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Written by Kristina F
(2/21/2013 12:47 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Brandon versus Brandon, penned by Robbin
I agree with you that Austen's Col. Brandon hides (or controls) his anger quite a bit better than S&S3's Brandon, and I also admit that asking Willoughby what his intentions are toward Marianne certainly isn't in the novel, and in fact makes Brandon appear more confrontational than he should.
However, it should be noted that Brandon in S&S3 has a fair opportunity to kill or seriously maim Willoughby in the duel, and he chooses to spare him. In the book, I have always assumed that Brandon fully intended to kill Willoughby if he could, and was only prevented from doing so due to the inaccuracy of Regency era pistols and the code of honor that would have to be obeyed during the duel. What I gather from the original S&S2 screenplay is that Emma Thompson probably had this exact same opinion about the duel, so the original intent for S&S2 must have been to have Brandon going into the duel with the intention to kill Willoughby, whereas S&S3 clearly indicates that Brandon only meant to humiliate him, and so had no intention of doing anything more than giving him a minor wound.
I feel I should point out that I have nothing against Thompson's interpretation of the duel (which did not make the final cut, unfortunately), because I think it is actually a good deal closer to the book than Andrew Davies's interpretation, but, sorry, it just DOES seem more aggressive and violent-minded for Brandon to want Willoughby dead.
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