Bridgete Jones’s Diary: Pride and Delusion

This is the second article I had written with the Return of Kings audience in mind. It follows from the first I posted a few weeks ago. They were both written around the same time. 

A few years ago I started thinking about films I’d watched growing up and how my perspectives have changed since red-pilling. Films like Father of the Bride where Steve Martin’s character is portrayed as nasty for being reluctant to fund an obscenely expensive wedding for his daughter who got engaged after a few weeks of romance in Italy. Another is Look Who’s Talking where a woman gets knocked up by her boss spends most of the film thinking she’s too good for the taxi driver that actually gives her the time of day – until she finds out he’s actually a pilot, that is. I don’t think any bothers me so much as the film Bridget Jones’s Diary.

I noticed that the release of a third Bridget Jones film seemed to come and go without much notice back in 2016. In saying that I note that looking it up, it seems to have been as profitable as the last two and was by no means a financial flop. But then, these films aren’t really marketed to people like me and I don’t watch much television anyway. I am ashamed to admit that I once enjoyed the original Bridget Jones film when I was in my early 20s and saw nothing at all absurd in the premise. However, as mentioned, since taking the proverbial red pill my thoughts when remembering the events of the film have naturally taken a decidedly different turn.

If you aren’t familiar with the films or the books they’re based on, (a good thing), let me give you an overview of the first one. Bridget Jones is a fat, drunken, vulgar and promiscuous woman in her 30s. Her friendship group includes a one-hit-wonder homosexual pop star and another tarty, chain-smoking woman in similar circumstances to Bridget. From what you gather of the group, they are quite miserable and of course – perpetually single. Bridget decides early on that a change is in order which includes things like becoming less fat and keeping a diary. She eventually meets and gets the attention of two men (one being her boss), who compete for her affections

The original book is a re-imagining of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice for modern Britain. The man that eventually wins over Bridget even has the same last name as the main love-interest in the Austen novel and is played by Colin Firth; the same actor that starred in 1995 BBC adaptation. Hugh Grant the awkward, wavy haired charmer seems very at home in his role as Bridget’s womanising boss. Interestingly he also played a major character in the film adaptation of Sense & Sensibility; another Jane Austen novel.

The conceit of all this is Bridget is stepping in as the heroine Elizabeth Bennet who in stark contrast to Bridget, is slim, beautiful, intelligent, sensible, young and a virgin. The drama of the novel centers around Elizabeth’s rather unfortunate family circumstances for her class. Being one of five girls and from a comfortable though not especially rich family, her father can not offer much of a dowry for each child. And lacking a male heir, the family knows they will eventually lose their property to their cousin; the closest male heir. This is all compounded by other events and circumstances including a particularly stupid mother and a younger sister who later disgraces the family by eloping. So despite Elizabeth’s numerous qualities she is in for a struggle. Admittedly, critics at the time apparently found her far too outspoken for a woman but in contrast to women today, she is the very picture of female virtue.

The important thing to notice here is despite the kind of woman Bridget is, she (and her audience), still believe she deserves to have a handsome, successful man to rescue her from her mistakes despite having none of the qualities of the original heroine. I have a hard time believing that the author of the novels hasn’t projected herself onto the character. And the wild successful of both the novels and the films suggests there is a large audience of women who have done the same.

One other event in the original film is when her mother runs off with another man and comes back to her weak husband late in the film who takes her back and (naturally) without any consequences. I imagine something similar happens with Bridget herself in the most recent film though I don’t care to find out.

Now pointing out that women believe they deserve it all no matter what they do is hardly an original thought but it is worth reinforcing this knowledge. Women really do believe this. There are a few lessons to be learned from this though. One is that this is what Pride and Prejudice would look like in modern Britain shows just how far society has fallen. And with the success of Twilight and 50 Shades of Grey, women have if anything, become even worse in a very short time since the original film was released.

The main lesson though is that this series is useful in knowing the mindset of many (if not most), Western women today. I don’t think I need to tell ROK readers that any woman who likes this film or has led a life anything like the protagonist, is absolutely not marriage material. Even should she turn her life around — such a woman is almost certainly beyond reform and taking a chance with a woman like Bridget Jones is a tremendous gamble on your resources and happiness.

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