Darcy introduces Elizabeth to his sister, Georgiana; in spite of Miss Bingley’s best efforts, their relationship is growing warmer, until Elizabeth receives a piece of distressing news from Longbourn.
I’ve had like, the most stressful day and tomorrow’s gonna be stressful too. And I always inevitably get asked by a bunch of you why I do this series every year, when it’s obviously such a huge time commitment, but the real reason I’m actually kind of glad to have an excuse to be productive with my time.
When I have stressful days like today, I tend to hide under my covers, put on a podcast and play a game on my phone until I fall asleep but that’s not super great for my mental health.
But when I’ve agreed to do something like #25Days, it gives me some purpose — as annoying and time consuming as it may be! And you, reader, are a big part of that. I simply refuse to disappoint you.
Which segues nicely into what I actually wanted to talk about in today’s intro, which is the often hilarious and occasionally touching response I’ve gotten to this series in the last week and a half.
First of all, I’ve been meaning to give a shout out to @annielyon on Twitter who made my whole day with her very sweet note ❤️
Thank you for reading and I hope this makes your day better!
And a super random shoutout to whoever this person at a production of Pride and Prejudice this weekend; apparently you ran into some of my friends and they decided to be sneaky!!
Lol I am most decidedly unfamous, but I just wanted to say thanks to everyone who has shared and supported my silly little project and I hope you stick around all the way to the end with me too ❤️ Lord knows I’m gonna need the support. (Actually, it’s booze. I’m gonna need booze.)
OK, onto the show!
(MORE. FUCKIN. EMBROIDERY.)
So we’re still in DURBEESHYUHR as the fifth episode starts. Apparently Darcy and another gentleman are waiting for Lizzy at her hotel — and the elusive Georgiana is there too!
The other gentleman is and adorably excited Mr. Bingley who is so obviously looking to dig up information about Jane.
Georgiana does wing-womanning CORRECTLY (take note, Col. Fitzwilliam) and tells Lizzy all the nice things her brother has said about Lizzy — and talks up him a little too.
Further cementing her newfound status as DURBEESHYURH’s best wingwoman, Georgiana invites Lizzy and the Gardiners to dinner at Pemberley tomorrow night. Oh and won’t you please play piano for us? My brother says you’re so good at it. *blink blink*
Cut to Lizzy playing the piano SO. MUCH. BETTER. than she did at Rosings that it’s hard for me to believe she didn’t take Lady Catherine’s advice to heart about practicing more…
And of course, Sacco and Vanzetti are there in all their feathery, burnt orange silk finery. They look like they fell off a Regency-era catwalk.
The Sisters Karamazov are pissed as hell at all the attention Lizzy is getting from Darcy & Co., and it’s not hard to see why: Darcy looks like rainbows are shooting out of his eyes every time he looks at Lizzy.
Caroline Bingley tries to get in a dig at her by mentioning Wickham, but fails SPECTACULARLY because all she does is stress out Georgiana and Lizzy gets to save the day in front of Darcy.
If Darcy had rainbows shooting out of his eyes before, then he just just combusted into a double rainbow alllll the wayyyyy acrosssss the skyyyyyy 🌈
Lizzy and the Gardiners leave, and Darcy goes back in to the drawing room only to find Caroline is back on her bullshit AGAIN.
Caroline: Didn’t Lizzy look ugly? I thought she looked ugly.
Caroline: I’m just saying I thought she looked bad. Like. Real bad.
Bingley: Well I thought–
Caroline: I MEAN LIKE, REALLLLL BAD.
Darcy: You know what’s ugly, Caroline? Your goddamn shitty attitude, you hag.
Or something like that.
Darcy storms out of the room, and we get a short but sweet montage of him remembering Lizzy’s fine eyes and making moon faces at him over the top of Georgiana’s head.
Puppy love is the best 🥰
Darcy rides out the next morning to visit Lizzy at the inn in Lambton, and I can’t help but think he was headed out so early and so obviously to propose again.
I just think that’s an awful lot of public and private attention being paid to a pretty girl — and if I learned anything from Beauty and the Beast, it’s that townspeople always notice and talk about EVERYTHING.
Before he gets there though, Lizzy’s received not one, but two, letters from Jane.
The Gardiners politely skedaddle so Lizzy can read her correspondence in private and it starts mundanely enough — Jane reports on the dull goings-on in Meryton and how hyperactive the Gardiner children are.
But halfway through the letter, Jane drops the bombshell that their little sister has decided to elope with Wickham. The Bennets got a knock on the door in the middle of the night and Kitty, of all people, is suspiciously *not surprised.*
Jane says they expect the couple back from Gretna Green any day now.
But remember there’s two letters: and the second drops another bomb. They’re not married. They never intended to get married, and Wickham is just like, what? A kidnapper? I honestly don’t even know what’s going on here anymore.
(Seriously, what did Lydia think was going to happen???)
Lizzy rushes out find Mr. Gardiner and tell him the news so they can rush home to aid in the search, but of course that’s the exact second Darcy walks through the door.
Now, I think that this is likely going to be an unpopular opinion — but I think Darcy did actually revert to his old self here at the inn for a moment. That’s why he beats it back to Pemberley to quickly. Lizzy wasn’t wrong. Darcy was feeling awkward and got caught up in that social hierarchy nonsense.
It’s not until he gets to Pemberley and thinks about it some more that he makes up his mind to go and make the situation right. I actually think Caroline’s snobbery helps him to realize what he needs to do to make things right.
(I’d like to give him more props for realizing that — because ultimately he did do the right thing — but it would have been nice if he’d done it in the room with Lizzy instead of having to like, think about it for a full day.)
I’m also starting to understand that there’s a whole lot of self-doubt built into in Jane and Lizzy’s characterization.
If Jane had believed Bingley loved her … if Lizzy had believed Darcy’d truly changed … ah well. Interesting stories don’t come from people immediately understanding each other. (One of the many gripes I have about Romeo & Juliet too, but that’s a topic for another day.)
Anyway, I digress. At the inn, Lizzy tells Darcy what’s going on with Lydia and Wickham and fully blames herself for not telling people about Wickham’s bad character.
(At some point in this series, we’re going to dive into Regency-era social expectations and rules, but suffice it to say for now that Lydia’s action really would have ruined her sisters’ chances for marriage.)
So Darcy makes his excuses and leaves, and Lizzy is absolutely sure that she’s just fucked up any chance she might have had with him forevermore.
Lizzy and the Gardiners head back to Longbourn, while Darcy is making up his mind to right the wrongs he created when he allowed Wickham to keep breathing after he fucked with Georgiana last year.
Lizzy finally gets home and Jane is like “JESUS CHRIST THANK GOD” because inside, Mama Bennet has fucking. 👏 lost. 👏 it. 👏
She blames Mr. Bennet for not taking them all to Brighton. She blames the Forsters for not keeping a better eye on Lydia. She blames the Collinses for turning them out of the house — which hasn’t even happened yet.
She blames everyone for the situation but the actual culprits: Lydia and Wickham.
And her chief concern? That Lydia is going to buy a wedding trousseau without her input.
We cut to Darcy heading somewhere quickly, looking serious, and then back at Longbourn, the whole family gets a lecture from Mary Bennet about womens’ reputations and how brittle and fragile they are.
(I mean, Mary’s not wrong here. Actually, she’s rarely wrong — she’s just always annoying.)
Lizzy and Jane have a chat about who is most responsible for Wickham — though they forget to mention the most obvious answer.
(Wickham. Wickham is the one responsible for his behavior.)
Apparently tho, Lydia left a letter explaining her whole plan to Mrs. Forster so at least we know that at some point, she thought Wickham was going to marry her.
Not sure that makes it better but, but it does mean that Lydia isn’t entirely stupid.
Lizzy is absolutely miserable. What’s worse is that she can’t even admit what was going on with her and Darcy back in DURBEESHYURH — and everyone’s too preoccupied with the Lydia Issue to ask how the trip went.
(It does strike me as odd though that the Gardiners stay silent about it?)
But Lizzy slips up and mentions that Darcy knows about everything to Jane — and has to come clean with her theory that Darcy (and all the rest of good society) won’t ever come near them again once word of Lydia’s little adventure gets out.
The next morning, Collins shows up to offer his “condolences” to the Bennet family — and flat out says Lydia would have been better off dead.
He manages to insult Lizzy particularly, but I’m personally more upset at the comment that Charlotte’s been spreading that hot goss about Lydia and her “licentiousness of behavior that has preceded from a faulty degree of indulgence.”
Translation: “Charlotte told me that Lydia is a spoiled brat and everyone but her own family saw this one coming.”
Again, he’s not wrong but also again, no one gets to point out the flaws in Lizzy’s family but HER, thankyouverymuch.
Lizzy tells Collins to beat it, in no uncertain terms and he takes the hint before he, too, is tainted by association.
Town gossip and Bennet aunt Mrs. Phillips comes by to visit with more tales of Wickham’s debts and foul fiendery, which likely means everyone in Meryton knows about Lydia by now.
Cut to London, where Lydia’s bored as hell. Turns out being licentious and naughty isn’t as much fun as it looks in the movies.
Cut back to Longbourn, where a letter from Uncle Gardiner says Mr. Bennet is coming home alone and he’ll stay to look for Lydia.
Mr. Bennet storms through the house like a storm cloud and shuts himself into his study with hardly a word to the family. Smooth move, Ex Lax.
Meanwhile, Darcy is stalking the streets of London, and who does he find, but the same shifty governess that sold out his sister a year ago, Mrs. Young!
At Longbourn, Mr. Bennet is finally ready to talk. He blames himself — and rightfully IMO. He was pretty stupid about the whole situation. At least he tells Lizzy she was right, small comfort though it is.
(Also why is it always that dads can never find a happy medium? They’re either strict as hell or completely oblivious to everything their daughters do. 🤦🏻♀️)
We’re bounced back to London now, and I think I’m starting to get whiplash from all the scene changes in the second half of this episode.
Darcy must have extracted information from Mrs. Young about Wickham’s location because guess where he is? Downstairs from Lydia and Wickham’s love shack AND HELL DON BROKE LOOSE IN GEORGIA AND DARCY DEALS THE CARDS.
We cut AGAIN back to Longbourn and a rider gallops up to the house and delivers a message.
It’s for Mr. Bennet and Lizzy and Jane get a tip off from Hill the Housekeeper to go check on their dear pa pa.
Good news and bad news: Lydia and Wickham are to be married, Mr. Bennet must provide an annual income of £100, and Wickham’s debts are to be paid off.
Actually NONE of that sounds like bad news, but READ ON! It seems as though Uncle Gardiner has laid down a significant sum to make this all happen — and how will brokeass Mr. Bennet ever repay it?
The episode ends on Lizzy quietly musing that she’s not sure why she cares so much about Darcy’s opinion of her… but she very much does, and she’s very much sure that it’s a bad opinion…
Come back again tomorrow for the finale, episode six! (But not the last in our series of reviews because my stupid ass started on day three like a dooope.)
Buuuuuut, if you share these dopey blogs every day anyway, you could win a super awesome prize pack in honor of Jane’s Birthday on Dec. 16!