From the “Here we go again” files…

Jonny Lee Miller is an “absurdly young Mr. Knightley”?

He’s 36, people.  And Mr. Knightley, according to Miss Austen, is “a sensible man of about seven or eight-and-thirty.”  Further, Dude’s a very youthful 37 or 38:

“His tall, firm, upright figure, among the bulky forms and stooping shoulders of the elderly men, was such as Emma felt must draw everybody’s eyes; and, excepting her own partner [Frank], there was not one among the whole row of young men who could be compared with him. He moved a few steps nearer, and those few steps were enough to prove how gentlemanlike a manner, with what natural grace, he must have danced, would he but take the trouble.” (At the Crown In Ball.)


2 Replies to “From the “Here we go again” files…”

  1. I’m sorry to go against you, Kali, but I think I understand what David Lister meat, perhaps the adjective he used was not the adequate since as you have pointed out and I have also insisted on it for more than 10 years whenever someone critisizes Jeremy Northam’s youthful appearance as Mr. Knightley (Notice please, I have not forgotten him and I will never do so!!!), in the novel we are told that he is 37 or 38 but he looks young.

    JLM not only looks young, but boyish and that is only one part of what bothers me of his being cast as Mr. Knightley (now I’ve seen the whole miniseries and though I do not dislike it as I have loathed P&P3 or P3, nor I do think it is a lousy adaptation as MP2 and MP3 have been, it leaves me quite flat) and that is what I feel most disappoingly and even frustrating of this miniseries from my subjective point of view (have I mentioned Mr. Knigthley is one of my 3 top literary heroes of all times -tied with Faramir and Jean de Pardaillan (from a French series of novels)-, not only my favourite Austen hero?).

    So I say, JLM looks too boyish, lacks that manliness which IMHO is an inherent characteristic of Mr. Knightley. Furthermore he is not tall (that is evident not only in his interaction with Romola Garai’s Emma, but also with other characters for example Sir Michael Gambon).

    Here are other quotes from the novel that offer a description of Mr. Knightley’s appearance:

    He has not such a fine air and way of walking as Mr. Knightley. I see the difference plain enough. But Mr. Knightley is so very fine a man!”

    “Mr. Knightley’s air is so remarkably good that it is not fair to compare Mr. Martin with him. You might not see one in a hundred with gentleman so plainly written as in Mr. Knightley.

    Mr. Knightley’s downright, decided, commanding sort of manner, though it suits him very well; his figure, and look, and situation in life seem to allow it; but if any young man were to set about copying him, he would not be sufferable.

    That is what I also find terribly missing from JLM. So, he is not and never could be *my* Mr. Knightley.

Leave a Reply