Much like MARCH (the month) our little experiment in the madness of brackets has come to an end. The reader’s have voted and we have the winners!
As you can see the Colonel and Lizzie came in first in their respective categories. Hat’s off to Miss Elizabeth, who garnered all the votes from the ladies final bracket. Brandon had some competition from Knightley, but he was the winner by a large, manly margin.
This March Madness, Jane Austen Style Bracket has always been a purely academic exercise. Austen never intended for characters from different books to get together. But I couldn’t sleep last night, and as the hours began to trickle away and dawn refused to come I started to think about this impossible (dark) mash-up.
Marianne never recovers from her fever? Despite Elinor and Col. Brandon’s best attentions she dies at Cleveland?
- Edward still becomes Rector at Delaford .
- Lucy still marries his brother, leaving him to…
- finally proclaim his love for Elinor.
They marry and the Colonel generously sets up Mrs. Dashwood and Margaret in a house closer to town and the newlyweds so the remaining family members can live in closer proximity. This leaves Barton cottage empty.
Which is good… because what if…
Lydia runs off with Wickham a week earlier than she did in the novel. Jane’s panicked letter to Elizabeth arrives at the Inn at Lampton BEFORE Lizzie and the Gardiners have a chance to tour Pemberly.
She doesn’t see Darcy’s beautiful house, or, more importantly his altered behavior (or — as in the BBC version — his wet shirt.) Darcy and Elizabeth’s friendship and romance doesn’t have a chance to kindle. And she and the Gardiners leave immediately for Longbourn. (Darcy doesn’t learn of the ‘elopement’ for weeks when the details have become grist for the rumor mill. By then it is too late for him to find the lovers.)
Mr. Bennet goes looking for Lydia and Wickham, which results in one of these possibilities…
- He finds them, and as Mrs. Bennet sagely predicted, he duels with the rascal and dies.
- He can’t find them and his frequent trips away from his man cave to London, Gretna Green and points north prove too strenuous for him. He dies of a heart attack.
This leaves Mrs. Bennet and the remaining girls in a very undesirable position.
- Their reputation is ruined. (THANKS LYDIA!)
- They must leave the Longbourn.
- And they have very little money to live on.
Of course the Gardiners take them in, but that proves a VERY temporary fix. (Can you imagine putting up with Mrs. Bennet’s flutterings?) Mr. Gardiner uses his business connections to put out feelers for a reasonably priced home in the county, far enough away from town that their reputation might be over looked.
He finds a 3 bedroom cottage near Barton Village. It is a little less roomy than Longbourn, but the cottage would have much comfort and much elegance about it. The Bennets move in in the Spring.
Lizzie, who is fond of long walks, finds herself trespassing on the grounds of Delaford…
This blog post has been interrupted by the hostile take over by Pemberly Digital.
Because, really… everybody KNOWS Mr. Darcy should have won.