December 17, 2010

You Don't Want Mr. Darcy...

Mr. Darcy is presented to all of us, even to this day, as the perfect man. He's not an anachronistic character you studied in your grade 11 English class, he's the man we all think we want to marry to this day. First, A and E preserved his memory in the 1990s, and then Bridget Jones reincarnated him in the 20th and 21st centuries as a haughty human rights lawyer. Also, there was that dreadful Keira Knightly movie where none of the characters brushed their hair and they tacked on a really stupid ending. Let's forget about that, okay? I mean, the costumes didn't even fit! Poor Keira's flatchestedness (And I know she's a bitch so I probably shouldn't feel sorry for her, but whatever) was on display to everyone when they couldn't even be bothered to tailer the empire-waisted dresses to f-cking fit her. The least they could have done was stuffed her bra!

Anyway, enough of the sartorial sniping. Back to Mr. Darcy. Generations of girls have gone gaga for him. Colin Firth practically made a career out of PLAYING him, after all. But what's so great about Mr. Darcy, anyway? He's the man you SHOULDN'T Marry. There, I said it.

Elizabeth Bennet is supposed to have high standards for herself. She won't marry just any jerk who doesn't respect her, and this is why she rejects Mr. Collins' advances, and it's supposed to be why she rejects Mr. Darcy the first time, as well she should. Why would you marry a guy who loudly calls you homely to his friend the first time he sees you because he's embarrassed about liking a middle-class country girl, then goes on to sabotage your sister's marriage to his friend because he thinks she's too poor? To top it all off, the first time he proposed, he basically told her she was just shame-sex he REALLY wanted to have, and that's why he was popping the question. No woman should value herself so little as to want such a controlling, classist, impolite dick!

But then something happens. After Elizabeth rejects Darcy, he becomes nice for about five minutes and then she marries him. WTF? Does him uses his money to bribe an old associate to marry her sister Lydia really make up for all the shit her put her through? Is this really proof of change, or does he just want to bang her that badly?

We've all been there with a guy. At first he's a jerk because he's read the game and is trying to nettle you into bed. When he realizes, however, that you're a confident chick and can't be manipulated like that, he might change tactics and start being INCREDIBLY nice. For example, he might offer to help you rearrange the furniture in your house or to drive you to the hospital to visit your grandmother. DO NOT BE DECEIVED! If he really were just a nice guy and not only trying to get up all in your business, why wouldn't he have been nice from the get-go? No, he just wants to bang you and is changing tactics out of desperation because his usual games didn't work!

A truly confident girl holds out for the guy who doesn't publicly insult her at parties they first time they meet or mettle in her older sister's love life. She doesn't change her mind when he's nice to her for all of five minutes. No, sir, if she knows her self-worth (whether this is in the Georgian era or today), she doesn't go for Mr. Darcy. Because, guess what? Mr. Darcy is "just not that into you." He just wants to bang you...

After marry Elizabeth Bennett and shagging her for a few months, I'm sure he moved on to a mistress of some sort. Let's not be naive here. Mr. Darcy is the 1800s equivalent to the guy who pretends he wants to be committed and calls you his girlfriend for a week so he can get in your pants before discarding you. No, jerky guys did not just emerge in the 1960s with the baby boomers - Jane Austen had them too.

Don't get me wrong, there are some lovely men out there. There are great guys, and of course we women can find them, but we shouldn't be distracted or please be suspicious of the one who's only nice to you AFTER being mean failed to pick you up...

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