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April 8, 2011 / Siobhan Argent

My Obsession: Colin Firth

That’s right boys, look away now. Most of the time, it’s only when obsessions are in full swing that somebody realises something is amiss. But I can pinpoint the exact production responsible for turning me into a full-blown Firth-y fan, thanks to a role Firth was always destined to play. Mr. Darcy. BBC’s production of Pride and Prejudice was the moment Colin Firth ceased to exist and most of the Westernised, non-American, oestrogen-riding world fell in love with Mr. Darcy personified. Up on screen, enshrined on film, Firth offered an Austen-hungry crowd the kind of hero they craved. One with a non-receding hairline, and a crazy, heady love for an upbeat young chick called Elizabeth. Thighs that looked rather beautiful in riding breeches, and the kind of intense, sexy stare that would make any red-blooded woman quiver with lust.

Repeat watchings (and readings) of P&P sustained my imaginary wanderings with Firth-y around Pemberley. It was easy to fantasise as he dashed around (always elegantly, it must be said), attempting to woo his precious Elizabeth. Silly girl didn’t know what she had going for her at the time.

And then there was Bridget Jones’ Diary. He stumbled a little here; it’s hard to believe Mr. Darcy could honestly fall for such a British (Texan) dumpy girl who smoked, swore, didn’t seem all that intelligent and had a penchant for running about in her knickers. It all seemed so undignified, so inherently un-Mr. Darcy, that I couldn’t help but feel Firth had taken a step backwards. This movie was nominated for an MTV ‘Best Kiss’ award; in my opinion, it simply fell flat in comparison to P&P’s utterly restrained, but perfectly orchestrated public pash between a new husband and wife.

And so while Pride and Prejudice kept the Firth train going, Bridget Jones’ Diary maintained the Mr. Darcy fever and St. Trinian’s almost killed it. At that point, I was just about to fall of the Firth wagon with the kind of resounding thump that belies my habit of eating leftover whipped cream for a midnight snack. But The King’s Speech saved me. That’s right folks, King Albert himself. I don’t aim low or anything. He’s not particularly sexy, but he’s a potent reminder of the upper-class gallantry and romanticism of Mr. Darcy, albeit with a stutter. Aside from the travesty of St. Trinian’s, dear old Collie doesn’t do much wrong. And if anyone argues with me…


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