A Guy’s Perspective of Mr. Darcy: A Chick Magnet

A Guy’s Perspective of Mr. Darcy: A Chick Magnet

I stumbled across this article several years ago and posted it on the blog in 2007. I figured why not share again for those who may not have read it then? The article was written by Bruce Ward for canada.com in December of 2005, weeks after the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice hit theaters. With that in mind, Mr. Ward wrote this humorous bit. Below is the full content, with a few fun images to enhance. Read on and enjoy!


Mr. Darcy, The Chick Magnet by Bruce Ward

Some of you young studs out there will be taking your sweetie to see Pride & Prejudice tonight at the cineplex. You will encounter Mr. Darcy, maybe for the first time. And you will not prevail against Mr. Darcy. “What’s the matter, Pops?” I hear you snickering. “Can’t handle a chick flick?”

Go ahead, laugh. But here’s what I have learned about Mr. Darcy and his effect on women: He’s a menace. I say this based on 32 years of marriage, not counting the three years we were walking out together. Mr. Darcy is a sex machine to all the chicks, like Shaft in the song. He burns with sullen intensity, and does so while wearing a frilly white blouse and tight breeches. This you will never do. As the years go by, you will be compared unfavourably to Mr. Darcy many, many times.

I read Pride and Prejudice back when I was pitching the woo to my gal. (You have to make an effort in the early going, don’t you?) It’s about England. A lot of goofy sisters stand around prattling about Mr. Darcy, who is visiting the Bennets at their country home. Elizabeth Bennet — she’s smart and a looker — is mad because in 1813 women were all but auctioned off in marriage. None of the Bennett sisters are married, mainly because they are forced to wear dresses with an Empire waist — basically, a sack.

Mr. Darcy is mighty glum, but I never figured out why. Soccer hasn’t been invented yet, so it’s not like he has to sit through a typical eight-hour match that ends 0-0. I think he’s in love with Mr. Bingley, the other rich, handsome swine in the movie, and that’s why he’s always stomping around outdoors. More than anything, Mr. D. wants to go shopping for frilly white shirts with Mr. Bingley. (Warning: Keep this theory to yourself, unless you’re already in the middle of a fight with your girlfriend.)

Mr. Darcy and Lizzie don’t like each other at first. She hates him, in fact, because he is haughty. Things get worse but eventually they discover that they are twin souls. It’s like Jane Austen had somehow been watching all those future Meg Ryan movies. Eerie.

In the new version of P&P, Elizabeth is played by Keira Knightley. The first P&P my wife and I saw together was one of those made-in-England TV deals. Colin Firth, a sometime resident of Vancouver Island, plays Mr. Darcy. Nobody does sullen intensity better than Firth. Any woman will tell you this. Should you try sullen intensity to impress the chicks? No. You will not look like a soul in torment. You will look hung over, and your loved one will say, “What’s your problem, Misery Guts?”

You know the expression “a month of Sundays,” right? That’s how long the TV P&P lasted. Each episode opened with a tracking shot of a four-horse carriage rolling across glorious English countryside. And each time I was asleep before the carriage came to a stop in front of the big house. Don’t be like me. Don’t say “Did anything happen yet?” when you awake. I guarantee your girlfriend will say, “Shut up, OK?” Or worse.

Do try to be conscious for the ballroom scene, which is always good for a laugh. You know the one. Band playing something lively, men lined up on one side of the room, women on the other. After some bowing and flouncing, each facing couple joins hands and sashays down the row, bosoms heaving. This is ye olde version of slow dancing, and it’s even funnier than watching the Royal Family doing Highland flings.

Matthew Macfadyen plays Mr. Darcy this time around. He has a plummy accent and a yummy profile, and advance word is he’s no slouch in the sullen intensity department. All of which is bad news for guys.

How can you fake your way through P&P? Trust an old hand. Be sure to talk about Austen’s use of language when you go for coffee. And when ordering say, “Make that two tall, low-fat, five-pump chai lattes, please.” It’s what Mr. Darcy would do.


Well done Mr. Ward! Ha!! I loved it and am sure just about every testosterone driven man in the universe would agree!! As for me? Well, I’ll take the plummy accent and tight breeches any day, frilly shirt and all! Agreed?



11 Comments for A Guy’s Perspective of Mr. Darcy: A Chick Magnet

  1. What a talented writer! My hubby said her heard this advice for guys: “If you want to know what a woman wants in a man, read a romance novel.” Well, we women may not be (literally) looking for tight breeches and frilly shirt these days, but we do like a man who will fight for us and declare his undying love. Thank you, Mr. Darcy! (and thank you Colin Firth and Matthew Macfadyen for bringing Mr. Darcy to life for us : )

  2. This is so funny! I’ve often wondered what my husband was thinking when I watched the 2005 P&P over and over! He did watch the first time with me and said it was a good show. Now he tells me you might like this show! ( anything British)And he is usually correct and leaves the room after a few minutes. Which I like so I can concentrate better!

  3. Ah yes, be careful what you wish for. Often when my dear MrB is standing with a scowl on his face and studying the scene out the window, I have to chuckle…I did it to myself.

  4. Hilarious! Wonder if my husband had the same thoughts when he saw the 2005 movie with me… Now he only groans and finds his pad but that’s allowed when it’s the 50th time 😉
    Haven’t dared to show him the BBC series yet.

  5. What a hoot! I’ve been trying to get my DH to watch any Austen film for a few years now. He calls them my “blah-blah” movies because all they ever do is talk. Not like in Hercules Unchained or Godzilla Versus Mega-Godzilla, where all kinds of stuff is always happening. Well, I beg to differ: There’s a lot happening. It’s just subtle and you have to watch and listen carefully. I agree with another commenter that the 1980 version is infinitely better than the 2005 movie, altho’ I admit that there are moments in the movie that I just love. My favourite tight-breeched and frilly-shirted Mr Darcy is still Elliot Cowan. Thank you for passing this along!

  6. Hilarious passage!!
    The main thing my hubby says is ‘Oh no it’s not Mr Darcy again is it?’
    Hehehe as recently as last night Bridget Jones Diary played on TV. My hubby watched it with me for about five mins when he suddenly realised it was about Mr Darcy. (I think he believes Colin Firth is Mr Darcy generally!!!) as he left the room he looked at me with a cheeky grin and said ‘ok you enjoy Mr. Darcy’ and believe me I did!
    My hubby totally surprised me one day when he called out to me ‘you’ll want to watch this next show, you’ll like it’ I had no idea what he was talking about until I came into the room and found Colin Firth doing an interview on TV 🙂
    I’m glad that even though I am generally obsessed with Mr Darcy, it did not influence my choice of hubby. Otherwise I still wouldn’t be married I’m imagining!

  7. Just sent this off to my colleague who teaches P & P to her AP Lit class. Her male students will love it!

  8. I actually made my husband sit through the 2005 movie because it was much shorter and he got the cliff notes version of the novel that I talk about (I did the same with Emma). He didn’t make many snide comments, mostly confused and wanted to know why the women didn’t just take over. LOL Different times my dear, different times. Article is great, frilly shirts and breeches…yes, and we love them for it. Plummy accents oh and how. 😉 Thanks for posting Sharon, I am one of those that missed it the first time around.

  9. Personally I’ve never liked the 2005 movie as Elizabeth is too “bratty” unlike the Elizabeth of the novel. In this regard the 1980 and 1995 TV series are both much better. Maybe it’s just me but I really like the 1980 and 1995 variations as they are much truer to the original novel than the short 2005 movie.

  10. The article was great! He has my husband’s perspective of the 1995 miniseries bang on! My husband loved the 2005 version and actually introduced me to Pride & Prejudice. I agree and will also take “the plummy accent and tight breeches any day, frilly shirt and all”. 🙂 Thank you for sharing.

  11. LOL, this was great … thanks for sharing it with us 🙂 and yes, plummy accent, tight breeches, frilly shirt and all 🙂

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