Why Bridget Jones is my life role model
My ultimate favorite romantic comedies of all time are the Bridget Jones’s Diary installments. I have read all the books, written by the charming Helen Fielding, about the quirky British singleton named Bridget Jones. A modern interpretation of Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice, with a leading man actually named Mr. Darcy (played by the one and only Colin Firth), Bridget Jones is a genuinely relatable young woman in search of love.
Bridget Jones feels more real than your average rom-com heroine. She’s a little overweight, doesn’t think things all the way through, breaks things occasionally, and maybe smokes a bit too much. Here are the reasons why Bridget Jones is charming, magical, and overall a great leading lady.
Bridget Jones understands awkwardness
Whether its her determination to burn off fat on a bicycle, leading to wobbly legs, or falling while climbing the roof of her boyfriend’s house to check that the new girl hasn’t whisked him away, Bridget Jones has some sense of balance. Besides, whenever Bridget Jones falls it is a true gem of physical comedy. Who can erase that image of Bridget Jones sliding down the fireman’s pole and crashing into the camera, her butt in clear view? Thankfully, Bridget Jones does not fall too many times. But when she does, she falls with style.
She has the best wardrobe
Whenever I watch a romantic comedy, most of the women have an expensive taste of clothes. They are decked out in nice dresses, heels, accessories, and purses. For people who don’t live off of Gucci, Channel, or even Anne Taylor, Bridget Jones demonstrates cute and affordable wear (thanks, genius costume designers!). Whether it is wearing a black mini-skirt with a see-through shirt (no designer labels visible), a black cocktail dress, or a white summer dress with a jean jacket (and frizzy hair), Bridget Jones shows a rich variety of good clothes. I can imagine Bridget Jones shopping at department stores and thrift shops.
She keeps a journal
The fact that Bridget Jones keeps a journal speaks volumes to me. In this journal, Bridget Jones records her weight, number of cigarettes, and her alcohol units, amongst her tales of failed relationships and plain disdain for future boyfriend Mr. Darcy. Being able to get to know Bridget Jones through her journal entries in the book and film series made her seem more human. When we write in our journals we are completely guided by emotions. So, unsurprisingly, Bridget Jones is 100 percent honest and critical.. It is a perfect way to get a glimpse into her way of thinking.
She has a rich (if sometimes totally cheesy) fantasy life
Whether it is skipping in joy, hand in hand, with Mr. Darcy for a romantic picnic on a hill or telling off an annoying co-worker at a party, Bridget Jones doesn’t disappoint. Her rendition of an extravagant wedding with womanizer Daniel Cleaver? Perfection.
She stands up for herself
Despite all the obstacles Bridget Jones has to face, she always bounces back. Most importantly, she gives the men in her life a piece of her mind. After discovering that her boss/lover Daniel Cleaver cheated on her with an American lawyer, Bridget Jones quits her job at the publishing agency. She lands a job at an TV station and delivers him the news the day of her new job. When Daniel tries to convince her to stay, she quips, “I’ll rather have a job wiping Saddam Hussein’s arse.” Burn!
She sometimes says the wrong thing, but she always recovers
As Mr. Darcy tells her in that sweet romantic scene, Bridget Jones seems to let things out of her mouth without thinking about the consequences. Whether it is giving an appalling bad speech, gloating a bit too quickly over a Madonna trivia question (and utterly failing), or asking Colin Firth (yes, in the books Bridget Jones gets to interview the actual actor!) about the wet shirt in Pride & Prejudice, Bridget Jones doesn’t quite know when to stop talking. The best example of this quirky habit is her first interaction with Mr. Darcy. She attempts to talk to the shy and reserved Mr. Darcy about partying all night and committing to stop drinking and smoking for her New Year’s resolutions (all while drinking and smoking in a beautiful Christmas jumper).
She knows who she is and stays true to herself
Bridget Jones has a great sense of who she is. Despite walking into the party in a bunny costume, when everyone else is dressed for a Sunday brunch, Bridget Jones owns it. She walks unfazed into the garden party. Her recovery rate whenever she makes a mistake (which is often) is stellar. She never apologizes and nothing (not pride or logic) stops her from doing what she wants to do (even if it includes rushing to Mr. Darcy during a meeting and accepting a marriage proposal that never leaves his mouth).
She loves people for who they are and expects them to do the same
After finally starting a relationship with Mr. Darcy, Bridget Jones and her new boyfriend suffer from their very different social lives. As we know, Bridget Jones is not a lawyer like Mr. Darcy (who was born with a silver spoon) and he, admittedly, is not as grounded as she is. When Bridget Jones lists her shortcomings and tells Mr. Darcy that she can’t change for him (how she’ll never be a debutante like his colleagues), she stands her ground as her own woman. Mr. Darcy never wanted to change her but his world did.
No matter how old you are, or how your current love life is, Bridget Jones’s diary can teach you some great lessons about self-confidence, life, and love. Bridget Jones is a beautiful mess. A true underdog. Someone who isn’t afraid to poke fun of herself while at the same time going after what she wants. Ms. Jones is a voice and face for all women who feel a little different. And being different is better than being normal—especially if you get to land Colin Firth in the process.
Ana Christina Perez is the co-creator of upcoming web series DE COLORES. She recently graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a bachelor’s degree in screenwriting. She spends her time going to the movies, watching plenty of television, and streaming pop music on Spotify. You can follow here @AC_Perez_DelRio and get more information on her web series @girlmatterprod.
[image via Focus Features]