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  • Deborah Yaffe

Boy meets pig

By now, we know that the Pride and Prejudice formula—opposites attract, enemies to lovers, snobby-meets-snarky—accommodates many variations. We’ve seen Darcys and Elizabeths divided over their racial/national identities, religious commitments, attitudes toward gentrification, and choice of martial-arts disciplines.


In that context, a human-animal pairing really shouldn’t be much of a departure. And thus it is that I, at least, welcome the news that Miss Piggy wants to star in a Muppet version of Pride and Prejudice, opposite the British actor Brett Goldstein.


The exciting news broke earlier this month, when Goldstein hosted an Entertainment Weekly roundtable interview with four of the stars of The Muppet Christmas Carol, which turns thirty this year. Noting that the Muppets have made screen adaptations of several classic works of fiction, Goldstein asks (at 15:49 on the video), “Can I please pitch that we make Muppets Pride and Prejudice?”


“Ooh, yes! Pride and Prejudice, I'd love to do that,” Miss Piggy replies. “Brett, you've got pull in this town. Can you get Pride and Prejudice and Piggy green-lit?” Goldstein immediately volunteers to play Darcy, with Miss Piggy starring as Elizabeth.


As Janeites will recall, a Muppets P&P wouldn’t be the first Austen adaptation to cross the species barrier: The beloved PBS series Wishbone cast a Jack Russell Terrier as Darcy back in 1995. Still, the latest pairing is inspired, as I’m sure you’ll agree.


Goldstein—best known for playing the surly, inexpressive, yet somehow smokin' hot soccer star Roy Kent on Ted Lasso—is a natural for the surly, inexpressive, yet somehow smokin' hot Mr. Darcy, although the Austen-based script will presumably dial down the foul language for which Roy Kent is known.


The famously vain Miss Piggy is equally well-suited to the Elizabeth who is convinced of her own excellent judgment. True, she'll have to stretch to convey the character’s growth in humility, but hey – that’s why they call it acting!


I know some of you are probably thinking, "But wasn't this whole thing just a joke? I mean, Brett Goldstein is a comedian, right?" Fine. If you want to be a killjoy, go right ahead. The rest of us are totally on board with this whole thing and are going to apply ourselves to casting the rest of the parts.


Kermit the Frog for Mr. Bingley, obviously. . . Elmo for Lydia. . . Further suggestions welcome. . .


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