By Major Van Harl
That Mr. Darcy Can Really Lop Off Heads.
Wisconsin –-(Ammoland.com)- Do you have a significant other (SO) in your life who is a Jane Austen fan?
As long as you have known this SO, do they have copies of Pride and Prejudice and other Jane Austen books in your home? Having never actually sat down and watched an entire Pride and Prejudice movie, I do you know most of the story and characters just from passing by the TV for twenty plus years, when one of the many versions of Pride and Prejudice was on? First, it starts with your SO and then when you have female children they too become Jan Austen fans.
When a Jane Austen movie marathon is on TV all weekend you might as well leave the house.
Do you get tired of that Mr. Darcy, his snobbish ways, his cool aloof, almost mean spirited (liberal speak) approach to the Bennet family, the five Bennet daughters, and most especially the lovely Elizabeth (Lizzy) Bennet? Jane Austen’s Lizzy Bennet is a pretty daughter of the gentry, who while literate, has no marketable skill outside of pummeling Mr. Darcy with her clever 1800s English repartee. The Pride and Prejudice genre is supposed to be a novel of manners. Mr. Darcy demonstrates bad manners toward Lizzy Bennet, and Lizzy demonstrates bad manners toward that Mr. Darcy.
And then the Zombies arrive in England.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, first was a book, now series, written in 2009 by Seth Grahame-Smith that was released as a movie in 2016. Mr. Darcy is now Colonel Darcy and while drinking tea and socializing with the upper crust of what is left of English society, he is shoving swords into people’s eyes and cutting off the heads of gentry zombies.
Even after the zombies have all but destroyed the English economy, that Mr. Darcy is still worth 10,000 pounds a year. A sizable sum, that any right thinking English young lady, who had not yet been bitten by a zombie, would make her very interested in pursuing Darcy as a future husband.
Now, instead of sitting around doing needle point and playing the piano as the Bennet sisters did in the original Pride and Prejudice, in the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies movie the five Bennet sisters are shipped off to China to become martial arts warriors. They come back to England as five bad-as, zombie-killing, combat princesses, who at first blush falsely give you the impression they are the same old Bennet sisters you might see in any of the many Pride and Prejudice movies. That is until the scene where the sisters are getting dressed and start strapping on knives to their thighs, knives in their boots, swords and pistols on their belts and a muzzle loading rifle on their shoulder.
Now they are still the sharp dressers of the day, freely going anywhere in society and the open country-side by themselves, but they are ever ready to shoot out the eye of a zombie (killing the brain) or slice open a head with their sword. Even with the normal Bennet sister bickering and squabbling which was found in the original book, and is carried into Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, when the zombie bio mass hits the local windmill (SHTF), Lizzy and her sisters fight as a precision trained death squad.
A family who is a well-trained killing team that anyone on the Walking Dead show would love to have fighting on their side.
It does your heart good to see such fine English young ladies, instead of sitting around knitting they are professionally sharpening their knives, or cleaning and oiling their pistols. Lizzy is found speaking of the Art of War in fluent Chinese instead of trying to get all the spaces on their dance card filled. That Mr. Darcy still has a stick stuck up him where the moon don’t shine, but he becomes quickly enamored not only with Lizzy’s beauty but her ability to destroy a zombie’s brain at a hundred yards with rifle or lop a head off in close quarters.
The evil Mr. Wickham is ever present and again tries to pass himself off as a good guy working to stop the Zombies. No matter if it is the Pride and Prejudice book, or one of the many Hollywood movie versions, or even Pride and Prejudice and Zombies with those pesky zombies, the Bennet sisters are still looking for suitable husbands. They must marry well, since they will all be penniless when Mr. Bennet their dad, dies or gets bitten by a zombie and leaves them nothing. In this latest story, the sisters not only need a man who can bring home the English bacon, but can also bring home a new musket or a couple of Wilkinson swords when danger requires.
In the book, Lizzy and her sister get married in a double wedding and the movie always ends with the two newlywed couples driving off in a carriage living happily ever after. I always kid my daughter that given 1812 medicine one or both of the two Bennet sisters are dead in childbirth within the year and my daughter always tells me to be quiet and stop spoiling the moment.
In Pride and Prejudice and Zombies it is not a potentially difficult labor that could kill Lizzy, but Mr. Wickham and some of his friends showing up at the wedding with a few scratches and bites. There will be a sequel and something tells me that Mr. Darcy will have Lizzy’s back, since he gave her a shiny new musket with lots of shot and powder as a wedding present, and everyone got new bayonets for their rifles as wedding party favors. That Mr. Darcy thinks of everything.
I believe the Walking Dead TV series is entertaining, but also I see the episodes as training films that help inspire and maybe prepare you for a future crisis. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is well done, fun to watch, and worth seeing even if you are not a Jane Austen fan. If you really cannot enjoy Miss Austen’s original works, think of this new movie as a training film that could someday save your life.
If you want to impress your significant other tell her you cannot wait to take her to the newest Pride and Prejudice movie—so it has zombies, everyone has zombies nowadays.
20 Feb 2016 / Major Van Harl USAF Ret. / [email protected]
About Major Van Harl USAF Ret.:Major Van E. Harl USAF Ret., a career Police Officer in the U.S. Air Force was born in Burlington, Iowa, USA, in 1955. He was the Deputy Chief of police at two Air Force Bases and the Commander of Law Enforcement Operations at another. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army Infantry School. A retired Colorado Ranger and currently is an Auxiliary Police Officer with the Cudahy PD in Milwaukee County, WI. His efforts now are directed at church campus safely and security training. He believes “evil hates organization.” [email protected]