I have always loved Bingley more than Darcy. There are far too many Darcy’s in the world of movies and literature now and we tend to fantasize and romanticize them and it’s disgusting. We had the original Darcy, and Edward (Twilight), Mako (Legend of Korra, although he’s not that bad), and now Mr. Grey. How disgusting that we have fallen so much that we want a domineering bad-boy like Mr. Grey that we 50 Shades of Grey was so poplar as a book that it is becoming a movie!?!? (But, that’s another post for another day.)
I love watching all these different versions of Pride and Prejudice:
The Keira Knightely version from 2005
The Mormon Version
and The Bollywood Version: Bride and Prejudice
Each of these have a great representation of Bingley (although the Mormon one makes him look like a daft klutz) and I believe that we need more Bingley’s in the world.
Here is a description of Bingley from Jane Bennett: “He is just what a young man ought to be … sensible, good-humoured, lively; and I never saw such happy manners!—so much ease, with such perfect good breeding!”
Bingley doesn’t have an idealistic wife. Remember that conversation between Caroline, Darcy, and Elizabeth about an “accomplished woman”? Bingley doesn’t have a list. Many boys go looking for girls to fit their lists, either physically or characteristically. Bingley doesn’t. He is kind to all in all circumstances and doesn’t judge.
I’m not the most sensible person ever. I like to believe I am, but in reality, my emotions make most of my decisions. Whereas my husband is very sensible. He will do a list of pros and cons. He will research all of his options. He will be very rational about all his doings. I like that in a man.
2) Good Humored
Bingley likes a good joke. If you told Darcy a joke, he’d just stare at you. That’s sort of a buzzkill! But Bingley will smile (he smiles all the day long except when he’s trying to propose to Jane!) People gravitate towards good humored people. They are fun to be around and make you feel happy.
My husband loves to joke around with people, he loves a good time. He’s not down on the dumps very often. Everyone is friends with my husband. I love all his jokes and laugh–that is one of the first reasons we first became friends!
Bingley was willing to dance. Darcy made it clear to Elizabeth that he doesn’t necessarily like to dance. Whenever Bingley was doing an activity, he would invite the Bennett sisters along. He was a good host and liked to have fun. The best representation of this Bingley is Balraj from Bride and Prejudice–he was the life of the party!
My husband also loves to dance. He loves to go to parties. He loves to have a good time and let others have a good time, too. He’s always making a goof of himself. My husband also has the greatest range of exaggerated facial expressions which he’ll pull out in a number of situations.
4) Happy Manners
Bingley is very kind, considerate, and good mannered. He is very polite and will always do what protocol calls for, which is why he sometimes got a little embarrassed and unsure of what to say or do around the Bennetts. Darcy, on the other hand, always had a stone face and was quite cold to those who he believed didn’t deserve his attention or manners. Bingley was polite to all.
My husband respects all women, regardless. He will be more than willing to engage in conversation with those whom I would stay away from. He says everyone deserves love. He is also very polite and patient with my family and loves my siblings and does so much for them.
Bingley had a way of ease about him. He was easy to be around, easy to talk to, easy to be friends with. Darcy always had a wall up, which is one of the reasons he frustrated Elizabeth so much. Bingley was also easy-going, sometimes almost to a fault–he would do what Darcy said, and after he proposed to Jane, Mr. Bennett actually warned them: “You are each of you so complying, that nothing will ever be resolved on; so easy, that every servant will cheat you; and so generous, that you will always exceed your income.”
Justin is very easy-going. He doesn’t mind a little mess or tardiness. He’s happy doing a number of activities, eating just about anything, and hanging with just about anyone. It makes life so much easier and more relaxed to know that your husband is so relaxed to begin with.
Now, before I get to “perfect breeding”….
6) A Little Bit of Uncertainty
Bingley got a little nervous around Jane because he loved her so dearly. He fumbled his first attempt at a proposal. In the Mormon version, he acts like a silly, innocent, little boy. But, honestly, which would you prefer, a man stumbling over his words due to loving shyness while he proposes, or a man (Darcy) who insults your life, standing, and family while proposing? I vote the first!
Justin told me he was deathly nervous while he set up his proposal to me. He said he was shaking the entire time and his stomach was in knots. Because of that, I knew I was exactly what he wanted because he was so scared I would say no. He was head-over-heels with me. And I love him for it.
7) Perfect Breeding
Yes, Bingley was rich, although nowhere near as rich as Darcy. And yes, Justin’s family is pretty well off. But, although that may be why Mrs. Bennett liked Bingley, that’s not what Jane meant. She meant how he was raised. He treated all women with respect (including obnoxious Mrs. Bennett), on time, a good host, polite, happy, etc. Justin was raised exceedingly well by his parents. He opens the door for all women, is willing to pay for others’ meals and activities, always willing to participate in Sunday School, works exceedingly hard at his job, and is a wonderfully spoiling husband and father. Darcy, yes, was fiercely loyal to his friends, but that’s kind of limited. He had such pride and prejudice (like Elizabeth) that it kind of turns me off.
So, let’s hear it for the Bingley’s of the world! The nice guy, the best friend.
Bingley is warm, open, and inviting. Darcy is cold, closed, and isolated.