Pride and Prejudice - It's Not Just the Tight PantsDespite Gina Ardito’s claim to being “just a typical suburban lady with a husband and two kids,” she is one of the co-founders of Dunes and Dreams, the Eastern Long Island chapter of RWA, and not only does she write romantic comedy, she writes historical romances under the pen name, Katherine Brandon!
Please welcome Gina Ardito to the Wet Noodle Posse!
This past week, my husband caught me in the bedroom, indulging my favorite vice: watching Pride & Prejudice. Again.
"What is it about this movie?" my poor clueless hubby demanded.
"It's Jane Austen," I replied smoothly. "The grandmother of my genre."
Okay, sure. Jane's terrific. But I don't watch Emma or Sense and Sensibility with the same rabid fan grrrl mentality I reserve for Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy. In fact, I can only think of two other movies that engender the same ferocity in me: The Scarlet Pimpernel and The Count of Monte Cristo. In each case, I own more than one version on DVD--Leslie Howard, Anthony Andrews, and Richard E. Grant all took a turn as the Pimpie, Alan Badel and Jim Caviezel both played the Count, and of course, Colin Firth and Matthew MacFadyen as Mr. Darcy.
"You know," my husband pointed out--not unkindly. "They're fiction."
Sure. Of course. I'm not delusional. But these three men are, for some reason I've yet to fathom, my idea of romance hero ideals. Mmmm...time to take stock and see if I can figure out why these three in particular, "do it" for me.
Maybe it's the tight pants?
I'm not that shallow. ...Am I?
So what do they all have in common? Time period? No, not really. They're all English? If that was the only requirement, I'd have moved to the Empire thirty years ago in search of my Happily Ever After. But I found my guy in New York--in the 20th century. Okay, scratch that idea.
But then I started to think about their love relationships. And I hit on something striking. Each of them fell in love with a woman, who, he believed, betrayed him in some way.
Sure, Elizabeth Bennet's crime was more in her loyalty to her family than the so-called crimes of Marguerite in The Scarlet Pimpernel or Mercedes in The Count of Monte Cristo, the former having supposedly condemned an innocent family to the guillotine and the latter marrying the man who'd betrayed our hero.
Yet, in each case, the heroes remained steadfast in their hearts to these women, despite their belief in the ladies' guilt. Why? For honor? Maybe. Sir Percy was already married to Marguerite when he discovered her alleged perfidy. But neither Darcy nor Dantes shared that domestic arrangement and could have walked away at any time. But they not only stayed loyal to their hearts (even with thoughts of revenge burning in their breasts), they managed to learn the truth and find love at the end of their journeys.
And therein, for me, lies the key. These are heroes who remain constant, who face the hardships and still struggle to believe--even when love seems impossible. Because sometimes in life, the hardest thing to do is love someone you think did you wrong. But love forgives, love believes in second chances, and the truly love-worthy hero will be there waiting when the truth is revealed.
To learn more about Gina visit her website. And don’t forget Gina’s book, A Run For the Money, will be available August 24, 2009!