Last week, Glamour published a blog post, “Great D-Bags in Classic Literature (And Their Modern Day Equivalents,” in which writer Anna Breslaw dared to insult one Fitzwilliam Darcy, the man responsible for setting crushingly high romantic expectations for two centuries of women.
According to Breslaw, “Austen’s character is pretentious, laconic, repressed, and verging on emotionally abusive.”
Okay, so he has some faults. He’s definitely pretentious, and maybe a little laconic. But repressed? No! The second he realizes he has feelings for Elizabeth Bennett, he proposes to her! And, yes, maybe it’s a little misguided at that point in their relationship, but in an age of ambiguous text messages and confusing drunken hook-ups, the idea of a man who immediately voices his attraction is infinitely appealing. And when she turns him down, he respects that, and when her family gets in trouble, he doesn’t chastise or judge!
Look, breathlessly defending Mr. Darcy is like, not a cool thing to do, so allow me to have some of our readers take over:
He’ll do all that without you having to nag him 59 times. He’ll do it before you even know it needs to be done, and when you say thank you, he’ll be all, ‘No worries, I did it because I love you most ardently.’-thesignaturething
Even if you can’t cook, he’d be all “Your delicious pot roast has bewitched me, body and soul.” -criticalmess
“He’s strong, silent, yet sensitive, he’ll give time and money just to get your attention, and he’ll change for you. That last part is the most important thing, and the thing that gets women into trouble in real relationships.”-Rachelkawesome
I think it’s less Darcy the person, but the two of them together. Here you have lizzie, who is out spoken, and perhaps not as pretty as her sister and maybe we identify with her. Because we’re outspoken and perhaps not as pretty as the other girls. And Darcy and Lizzie meet and, eventually, they learn to love each other BECAUSE of their faults. So we like him because here he is, this big man or whatever, loving a girl JUST AS SHE IS.-Joy Engel
Lastly, he’s handsome and rich and tall. Those three things are always going to stand the test of time. Always. -OhJeez
Whew. There we go. Darcy a d-bag? I don’t think so.