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|You have expanded the scope from where I started.
Written by Adrian
(9/14/2013 12:31 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, But it's giving the game away..., penned by Mandy N
Of course that is quite all right. As I said earlier, I would rewatch NA2 to see if anyone but John Thorpe claimed that Mr. Allen was not a gentleman but a tradesman. Since John T. was inherently unreliable in so many instances, I would not take his information on the subject as necessarily reliable. I did watch the DVD and therefore reported back what I found. I wasn't attempting to comment on the relative merits of the second video adaptation.
While I still don't wish to do that, you have brought up two points that interest me enough to comment on them.
I believe that a gentleman who married down for money was not looked down upon so much as a less-than-gentleman who married up for money. Since Catherine was the daughter of a gentleman, an additional source of money from a friend in trade might not have marked John T. as unimpressive. After all, the General decided to encourage Henry to pursue Catherine on just that basis. (This is not to say that John wouldn't embarrass himself without knowing it, as he did in other cases, nor do I think the General had any interest in John other than as a source of information.)
The second point you make, telegraphing the General's information on Catherine's anticipated fortune, is a pretty consistent quality of Andrew Davies and plenty of other writers who consider the "invisible mustache" a weakness in plot construction. Such people (and clearly JA is not one) believe that withholding a disqualifying character flaw until the last moment is a kind of deus ex machina in reverse, too convenient for good plot construction.
I confess, I can easily enjoy a story with either a deus ex machina ending or an "invisible mustache" if the story is otherwise interesting and well constructed. But clearly Andrew Davies (like many other writers) does not like these devices, as we know from early news of Darcy's return to Pemberley in P&P2 and Wickham's character in S&S3. (I fear I am veering towards Austentations territory here.)
Of course, many dislike AD's changing the stories in this way, which is fine. Artistic license means you can do whatever you like--and you can be roundly criticized for doing so by those who disagree with your choices. You don't have to like what AD has done here--of course you are entitled to that for the same reasons I never expect to view MP3 again--but there are established reasons (compelling or not) for what AD did in these instance.
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