The Real Housewives of Derbyshire County, страница 1
THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF
Good Evening and welcome, ladies and gentlemen. I am Sir David Frost, British journalist, comedian, writer and media personality, best known for my very serious interviews with various political figures such as Richard Nixon, now reduced to hosting this horrid little piece of nonsense, but there you go. One works when one can.
And...this is a terribly old photo of me.
Derbyshire County, England
This looks quite different from the representations on television and in the movies. Hollywood does tend to glamorize locations, and Derbyshire has grown quite a bit over the years.
Sir David Frost: Tonight we welcome The Real Housewives of Derbyshire County, a group of argumentative women who have wreaked havoc over the lives of their husbands, brothers and fathers for nearly two hundred years. In other words, typical housewives. My unasked for, unwanted, and yet still ever present, co-moderator for this open forum, a woman who is physically strong enough to wrestle Jesse Ventura, is Lady Catherine de Bourgh, an awesome caricature of a grande dame – just a totally overbearing, domineering woman who has always gotten her own way and can't stand to have anyone disagree with her.
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: You bring a blush to my cheeks, Sir. David.
Sir David Frost: I sincerely doubt that is even remotely
possible, Lady Catherine. Nevertheless, let us begin.
I now introduce The Real Housewives of Derbyshire County.
On the sofa, sitting farthest from me, on my right is Charlotte, super-practical, almost robotical in her logical approach to marriage, she was formerly known as Charlotte Lucas and is currently wife to Reverend Mr. Collins. Charlotte, thank you for being here.
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: Well of course she is here. Why would she not be here? I gave strict instructions to her husband that she should attend this miserable gathering and attend she has. She’ll be quite unexceptional, I can assure you of that. I have told her she may speak, but only during those odious commercial breaks or at such time as someone addresses her directly. Or, of course, if someone else should become incapacitated in such a manner as to become suddenly and profoundly mute. Isn’t that correct, Mrs. Collins.
Mrs. Charlotte Collins: May I speak, Lady Catherine?
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: Actually, I should prefer you did not.
Sir David Frost: Yes. Splendid. Well, perhaps we’ll move on then. Next to Mrs. Collins we have the lovely Jane, formerly Miss Jane Bennet, demur, saintly, generally one who acts just as a proper young woman should. Ordinarily, this would make her the big winner, since nineteenth-century novels tend to want their young women to be exactly like this. Here, instead, Jane's behavior actually almost causes her to lose everything. She is the current wife of Charles Bingley of Netherfield Hall. Mrs. Bingley, welcome.
Jane Bingley: I arrived on horseback.
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: Incredibly stupid these Bennet girls, I must say. I've seen this girl read - she mouths the words as she goes along. Astounding. I heard her once ask if Laudanum was an Easter hymn. Raised without a governess you know. May as well have been raised by wolves, the lot of them. They have no accomplishments, not one between them. I suspect the youngest one spits the farthest, but that's not much to build upon...
Sir David Frost: Lady Catherine, I really must protest, most vigorously. Under that thinly veiled threat of castration I did agreed to allow your co-moderation of this discussion with me but we cannot tolerate such disparaging remarks.
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: Why? What have I said?
Sir David Frost: (groan) Let us continue. Sitting beside Mrs. Jane Bingley is her mother, Mrs. Bennet, a woman who married before she was ready to a man she doesn't respect or love, a totally unhelpful, passive husband, who has failed to put any money aside as savings for his daughters, even though he knows full well that he can't leave the house or estate to them...Mrs. Bennet if you could just pay attention for a moment…are you feeling ill? You’re looking at me rather strangely, as if I’m a Christmas goose or something.
Mrs. Bennet: Are you married, sir? Betrothed? Engaged to be betrothed? Do you even like women? I have two more daughters remaining at home, unmarried both. Only two. Yes. I had five unmarried but then I had two. Five now two. They don’t eat much, really. One is a musician and the other is…not. Did you say if you were married?
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: You had better move on, Frost – you're not getting through to her. Well, she was never the sharpest tool in the shed - a few peas short of a casserole if you want my opinion. Hertfordshire is definitely short a village idiot since she came to town. Don't turn your back on her either. She's very quick - dull witted, but quick.
Sir David Frost: LADY CATHERINE!
Lady Catherine: Whatever have I said now?
Sir David Frost: How much time do we have left? Good God, that much. Oh my. We shall have to carry on I suppose. Let us move to the sofa on my left. Sitting farthest from me is Lydia, the youngest Bennet sister, gossipy, immature, self-involved, flings herself headlong into romance and ended up running off with George Wickham Welcome Mrs. Wickham.
Mrs. Lydia Wickham: I was wed at fifteen, before any of my other sisters and they were so very jealous. Wicky is dreamy! He has lots of muscles. Have you seen him? He was a soldier until he was tossed out, so now we live off of my sisters but still and all,they are both very rich so there's no problem. Wicky is the most handsome man. I am a complete fool for him.
Mrs. Charlotte Collins: We are all fools in love.
Mrs. Lydia Wickham: Oh, shut your gob, Charlotte! Every time you open your mouth you make me ill. Well, she does! Lizzy, quit looking at me like that!
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: You see now what they are like, don’t you. I am no stranger to the particulars of this youngest sister's infamous elopement. I know it all; that the young man's marrying her was a patched-up business, at the expense of father and uncles. And is such a girl to be my nephew's sister? Is her husband, is the son of his late father's steward, to be his brother? Heaven and earth! – of what are you thinking? Are the shades of Pemberley to be thus polluted?"
Mrs. Bennet: Mr. Frost, do you have brothers? May I enqure as to how much per annum you have? Have you any physical impairments? I assure you my daughters are no alarmists when faced with odd numbers of toes or such. Did I mentions there are two daughters yet at home. Good breeders. Large hipped.
Mrs. Jane Bingley: Well, at least Lydia wasn't forced to arrive on horseback.
Mrs. Lydia Wickham: Will you get over yourself! La! You're such a cold mullet, Jane, you're lucky to have a husband at all. I mean even plain old Charlotte got a husband!
Sir David Frost: Enough! Good heavens! Apparently I am losing control of this whole situation and I am now becoming quite terrified. Mrs. Bennet, I must request you remove your hand from my thigh. Thank you. Shall we move on. Quickly. Next to Lydia is the only single woman in our group…
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: (snort) Though not from want of trying to be sure.
Sir David Frost: ...Caroline Bingley. (Lady Catherine, perhaps you would like to wait outside.) Now back to Caroline. Miss Bingley you are said to have all of society's class prejudice but none of it's honor and virtue. You pandered to Mr. Darcy in an attempt to win his affections, but to no avail. You pretended to be a genuine friend to Jane but then were extremely rude to her when she came to London. You attempted to prevent the marriage of Jane and your brother and to prevent Darcy's attachment to Elizabeth by constantly ridiculing the poor manners of Elizabeth's mother and younger sisters.
Caroline Bingley: Don't be more ridiculous than you already are. I am currently living with my sister, Mrs. Hurst, and am quite content. I have no interest in marriage. None whatsoever. Never. I could easily have won Mr. Darcy’s heart, if I had put more effort into the pursuit. You're quite a short man, aren't you?
Mrs. Elizabeth Darcy: She is not such a simpleton. Could she have seen half as much love in Mr. Darcy for herself, she would have ordered her wedding clothes.
Sir David Frost: And that brings us to the true star of our show, Elizabeth Darcy, the former Elizabeth Bennet. As the second daughter of a country gentleman who cannot pass on his estate to a girl, Elizabeth risks poverty if she does not find a husband who can provide for her. Still, Elizabeth has eyes as well as ears, and she can see from the evidence in her own home (Exhibit A: Mrs. Bennet) that marriage can also be a one-way ticket to unhappiness. Despair if you do, despair if you don't. Under the circumstances, what's a girl to do?
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: Mr. Frost, IF that is indeed your real name, let me assure you that my nephew's wife employed unnatural feminine wiles to lure him into matrimony. Your assessment of her motives is as clear as it is correct. She desired the security of a superior match and thus demeaned our family. My heavens, the death of my own daughter would have been preferable to this patched up family!
Sir David Frost: Lady Catherine! Surely you don't mean to say such a thing about your own daughter!
Lady Catherine de Bourgh: Have you met my daughter?!
Mrs. Elizabeth Darcy: Lady Catherine, I am a gentleman's daughter, and as such resolved to act in that manner, which will, in my own opinion, constitute my happiness, without reference to you, or to any person so wholly unconnected with me.
Mrs. Bennet: She can talk like that because she's filthy rich. Ha!
Mrs. Elizabeth Darcy: You bet your sweet @#$ I am.
I arrived on horseback.
Jane, dearest, do stop saying that.
Mother, it was humiliating! I arrived wet and sickly.
And how can you still be angry with me – you came away with a husband. La, all my planning went very well.
I want to know what Miss Bennet meant by her remark!
Wicky can break walnuts with his thighs.
You mean Mrs. Darcy, do you not Caroline? Lydia please stop speaking about Wickham's thighs.
Lizzy’s merely jealous. She wanted my Mr. Collins, but he chose me.
Charlotte, you cannot be serious!
I thought Charlotte was your best friend, Lizzy, but I am your sister and all I wanted from you was a dry pair of shoes and you...
Charlotte you becoming the wife of Mr. Collins was a most humiliating picture!
I married before you did!
You were his third choice, you pathetic idiot! Believe me, that man would have turned to small farm animals if you had refused him!
I married Wicky before the whole lot of you found husbands.
My shoes were ruined, as well as my hair! I arrived on horseback, mother.
Jane you are truly become a trial to your mother!
SOMEWHERE IN THE SUB-BASEMENT OF THE BBC....
Sir David Frost: Well, as you can hear from the ceiling vent above me, I did eventually lose all control of this interview. About two hours ago the women began to gang up on me. After securing my hands and feet they locked me in this sub-basement men's lavatory, without cell phone reception or electricity, one floor above the Rupert Murdoch Memorial Newsroom. My Kindle is my only light - rather poetic, that. I have no idea how much longer the battery will last however so I have begun scribling out cries for help written on paper towels and flushing them down the thingy. Who knows, maybe they will float to the surface and be found, like some sort of Nicholas Sparks novel. I confess that I was rather unprepared for the furor of a group of such distinguished women. Weaker sex. Huh. My word.
If you can, please contact the police.
And send down some tea.
The wonderful screen adaptations of
PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
Lizzy Bennet - Greer Garson
Jane Bennet - Maureen O'Sullivan
Mrs. Bennet - Mary Boland
Lady Catherine de Bourgh - the magnificent Edna Mae Oliver
Lizzy Bennet - Jennifer Ehle
Lydia Bennet - Julia Sawalha
Mrs. Bennet - Alison Steadman
Caroline Bingley - Anna Chancellor
Charlotte Lucas - Lucy Scott
Lady Catherine de Bourgh - Barbara Leigh-Hunt
LIzzy Bennet - Kiera Knightley
Jane Bennet - Rosamund Pike
Lydia Bennet - Jena Malone
Charlotte Lucas - Claudia Blakley
Mrs. Bennet - Brenda Blethyn
Caroline Bingley - Kelly Reilly
Lady Catherine de Bourgh - the magnificent Judi Dench