Pride and Petulance
The story continues - Barbara Wright tells the toddlers the story of
Pride and Prejudice, with help from UNIT and others.
In which Mr Collins arrives, to the shock of Mr Bennet (Third Doctor)
and Mr Wickham takes a bow. And Mr Darcy is forced to dance. (Poor
In the meantime, Mrs Bennet hatches a plot to try and kill her eldest
daughter in pursuit of Mr Bingley, by sending her out in the rain to
visit Netherfield. She's ill for a while and Mr Darcy and Elizabeth
get a chance to get better acquainted, while Jane and Mr Bingley are
very much in love but too shy to tell each other, but the way this is
going, I'll think we'll move on swiftly to the day that Mr Bennet
received a letter...
MR BENNET / THIRD DOCTOR
Look, a letter.
MRS BENNET / NANCY[tucking into her roast fungus]
Who's it from, dear?
Someone I have never met.
JANE / LIZ
That doesn't narrow it down all that much.
LIZZY / SARAH
Oh, yes it does. It certainly can't be any famous person, for a
It's from my cousin, Mr Collins, who, after I am dead, may throw you
all out of this house as soon as he chooses.
MRS BENNET [placidly]
Don't talk to me about Mr Collins. I don't want to hear anything more
about Mr Collins.
Mrs Bennet, could you at least *try* to sound like an annoying, over-
excitable, foolish woman?
MR BENNET [in alarm]
Does she have to?
Well, it would help.
MRS BENNET [trying, but not succeeding]
Don't talk to me about Mr Collins! I don't want to hear anything
about Mr Collins ever again!
That's a shame, because he's coming for dinner today.
Mr Collins, arrived, full of a desire to please everyone, especially
his fair cousins.
MR COLLINS [stepping in through the front door]
What a charming abode, Mr Bennet. And what amiable daughters you
MR BENNET [standing back in shock]
Good grief, it's the Master!
MR COLLINS [remaining firmly in character with a certain malicious
Cousin, what can you mean? I would never count myself as master of
this house until *after* you are dead - which, I do hope, will not be
for some considerable time!
I suppose you'd better come in, if you must. But let me tell you here
and now that you're not marrying any of my - er - daughters!
I only intend to right the wrongs done to my fair cousins if it is
within my power. Lady Catherine - whom I'm sure I mentioned in my
letter to you - hit upon the idea and I do feel that it is only a just
one. Don't you, my dear - er - cousin?
No, I think it's nauseating.
One last warning, Mr Bennet, or it'll be detention for you, as well.
MR BENNET [still glaring at the Master]
Well, well, what an amusing fellow. Do come in and have a meal with
us and then propose to any one of the five that takes your fancy.
Right, Mr Bennet, half an hour's detention.
Oh, come now, Barbara - Harry only got ten minutes for hitting the
Yes, but you're being deliberately obstructive to the story. Please!
So you'd rather I helped the Master in his plot to marry Sarah Jane?
You know it doesn't work out that way.
Before Mr Collins could propose (after a word with Mrs Bennet about
which daughter to try), the girls went for a walk into Meryton and met
MRS BENNET [leaning conspiratorially near MR COLLINS]
By the way, it's no use looking at Jane like that, since we hope every
day that she will be engaged to Mr Bingley. But Lizzy isn't
interested in anyone. [Winks]
Thank you, Mrs Bennet. I shall bear it in mind.
LIZZY [walking to Meryton with JANE, MR COLLINS, MARY, KITTY and
[To JANE] I think I'm going to scream. At the moment, I've got a
choice of the Master or the Brigadier. Things are getting desperate.
Look, there's Captain Denny - and who's that with him?
[DENNY turns (played by CAPTAIN TURNER from 'The Invasion') along with
Allow me to introduce you to my friend Mr Wickham.
MR WICKHAM [Who is MIKE YATES, pleased with himself and his role in
Hello, there. [Winks at LIZZY and LYDIA]
[LYDIA starts laughing and is elbowed by LIZZY].
Um, how *splendid* to meet you, Mr Wickham.
The group were all talking together happily when MR BINGLEY and MR
DARCY rode up.
[There's a brief pause as everyone waits]
If the narrator doesn't mind, I think we'd rather walk.
As long as you get on with it!
Hello, Miss Bennet! We were just on our way to Longbourn to see how
[MR DARCY spots MR WICKHAM and glares and storms off.]
MR WICKHAM [shocked]
The Brigadier's not Mr Darcy, is he?
I'm afraid so. You should see my sisters, come to that. I mean,
hello, Mr Wickham, but I've heard some stories about you and I'm not
all that sure I want to be any better acquainted.
Look, I had my reasons for what I did.
I don't think we're sticking to the plot, are we?
Gentlemen, let's all be friends.
It's the Master!
Hadn't you noticed?
No, he was too busy flirting with us.
And who can blame me?
Heh. [To JANE] What d'you think'll happen if I just run away?
I heard that.
The next day, at her Aunt Phillips house in Meryton, Lizzy had a
chance to further her new acquaintance.
AUNT PHILLIPS / AUNT LAVINIA
Hello, Lizzy. Come on in, while I meet my sister. [Whispering to
Sarah] Who is she? I don't even recognise her. Some minor character,
Hark who's talking...
MR WICKHAM [all but rubbing his hands with glee at getting to be
disrespectful to the Brigadier shortly]
So, how long have you been acquainted with Mr Darcy?
About a month. He is a man of very large property in Derbyshire, I
Yes, his estate there is a noble one. A clear ten thousand per
annum. And I know what I'm talking about - I've known him since my
infancy. (Or maybe it just feels like that sometimes...)
Really? I'm surprised.
You may well be surprised, Miss Bennet, after seeing the very cold
manner of our meeting yesterday. Look, how well do you know Darcy?
As much as I ever wish to. I have spent four days in the same house
with him, and I think him very disagreeable. Everyone here is
disgusted at his behaviour. I think him a most ill-tempered man.
Sounds good to me. Here comes the sob story. Would you believe, Miss
Bennet, that his father was the best man who ever lived? He cared for
me like his own son and promised me a living, but when he died Mr
Darcy wouldn't let me have it. And I was so keen to be a vicar!
You should have found a good lawyer. I didn't think he was *that*
bad. Now I'm shocked.
Yes, and he's cruel to small, furry animals as well and -
You can't say I'm not in character! Let me carry on, here. Yes, Miss
Bennet, I've seen him myself - beating his horses and kicking his
dogs. You were right to call him an ill-tempered man. But I won't be
driven out of Meryton by his being here - I am prepared to face him.
Let him be the one to run away! I'll think of something...
Oh, the cunning of the man!
Anything else I can tell you?
Yes. What is his sister, Miss Darcy, like?
Oh, as proud and as disagreeable as him, I'm afraid.
This is shocking. How could someone as amiable as Mr Bingley be
friends with such a man? Are you acquainted with Mr Bingley?
No. He arrived on the scene after I left.
He is a sweet-tempered, amiable, charming man. He cannot know what Mr
Probably not, but Darcy can please where he chooses. He doesn't lack
ability and he can converse happily when he thinks it worth his
while. Do we have to talk about the bounder any longer?
MR COLLINS [leans back in his chair towards them]
I really should mention my dear patroness Lady Catherine de Bourgh at
this point, I believe.
Why's he being so helpful?
Oh, all right. Did you know that Lady Catherine de Bourgh is the - Mr
No! She has recently given our cousin a living and he is most
Her daughter is very rich and I believe that Lady Catherine intends
that she will marry Mr Darcy.
Poor Miss Bingley. Mind you, from what Mr Collins says, I suspect
Lady Catherine is another arrogant, conceited sort of person.
You've hit the nail on the head there.
Lizzy related all this to Jane later...
I don't believe it.
You better, 'cos it's true.
Well, Mr Bingley *must* have been imposed upon. It would be just like
him to be taken in by some -.
You're supposed to be the sweet, good-natured one.
Sorry. In that case, I'm sure there has been a misunderstanding
somewhere and all of them are perfectly nice.
The long-awaited ball at Netherfield arrived at last, with the
unwelcome addition of Mr Collins, who insisted on engaging Lizzy for
the first two dances.
[Arriving at the ball, LIZZY stares at the UNIT troops, searching for
MR WICKHAM, but with no luck.]
Sorry, Miss Bennet - Mr Wickham said that in the end he thought he'd
rather not cause trouble by meeting a certain person here.
Drat that Mr Darcy!
Her troubles were added to, when she agreed to dance with Mr Darcy.
Drat! Double drat! Now I've got to dance two dances with the Master,
followed by one with the Brigadier! What did I do to deserve that?
Isn't your cousin that nice man from Sirius 3? As for Mr Darcy, I
daresay you will find him very agreeable.
Agreeable? Heaven forbid! To find a man agreeable whom one is
determined to hate! Oh, help, here he comes!
Miss Bennet. Come on, we may as well get this over with.
You don't dance too badly, Brig. Not as well as the Master, though...
You don't get to be an officer without having to attend an official
function or two, Miss Smith. I mean, Bennet. Thought I'd left all
that sort of thing behind me, though.
You should be asking me some questions, to which I give you witty
Sorry, Miss Sm- Bennet.
One must speak a little, you know. It would look odd to be entirely
silent for half an hour together.
Half an hour?!
Later, Elizabeth found herself accosted by Miss Bingley.
So, I hear you've been taken in by that rogue Wickham. I suppose he
forgot to tell you that he is the son of old Mr Darcy's steward. And
I hear that he has treated Mr Darcy in a most infamous manner, but
then you're all such a lot of gullible idiots!
His guilt and his parentage seem to you to be the same thing. I might
have known you'd be into eugenics. He told me himself who his father
MISS BINGLEY [sneering]
Excuse me for interfering, then. It was kindly meant. A frivolous
woman like you with little in the way of brains needs guidance. If
you feel like that, suit yourself, but the man's an obvious liar.
LIZZY [sticking her tongue out at the retreating back of MISS BINGLEY]
Poor Harry and the Brig having to put up with that dreadful woman!
MR BENNET [taking his remaining daughters and wife to one side]
Listen to me, everyone, I believe the plan is for us to behave as
badly as possible and thoroughly humiliate Sarah Jane. Now, get to
Officers! Come on, Kitty - we can make them cups of tea!
I'm not flirting with a load of redcoats! Doctor, tell them.
Jamie, will you stop complaining and remember to call me 'Father'?
You know, I remember one day when I was young, an old hermit said to
Okay, okay, I'll flirt with the soldiers!
Is this the point to mention that I don't actually play the piano?
And my singing's not that bad, really. I made quite a hit at the
creche the other day.
I think that'll work nicely, cariad. I have to drink a little too
much of my homemade dandelion wine, I believe.
Something like that. Zoe - er - Mary, I'll stop you playing soon
enough. Just get on with it and hope that the piano knows it.
[Reflectively] That sounds familiar...
MR COLLINS [joining them in the corner of the ballroom]
Are you leaving me out of the family confab, my dear cousin? I
believe I have to be obsequious to Mr Darcy and mention Lady Catherine
My dear fellow, I don't care how many times you masquerade as a man of
the cloth, I still don't trust you!
Which they did so well that Lizzy had nightmares about it for years
afterwards. Especially Kitty flirting with the soldiers.
The next morning, Mr Collins asked for a word alone with Elizabeth.
LIZZY [finding herself alone with MR COLLINS]
Mr Collins, please excuse me, you can have nothing to say to me that
anyone need not hear!
I believe I have to propose to you, my dear. I don't know about you,
but I certainly don't want the - Mr Bennet interfering at this point!
No, I won't marry you!
I believe it is the nature of fashionable females -
Really, I won't! If you go on, I shall scream. You do realise that
this is completely ruining my favourite book, don't you?
I'm sorry to hear it. Personally, I prefer something with a little
more bite, such as 'Dracula', but Miss Austen was an intelligent woman
and I rate her works highly. I met her once, did you know?
Really? She must be about the one famous author the Doctor *hasn't*
Yes it was quite amusing, really. There was I, on the point of
insinuating myself into a small English village - five to ten good
families at the most - and she made a remark I found far too
perceptive and I thought it better to leave before -
NARRATOR [interrupting pointedly before the general chatting
Lizzy ran to her father, leaving Mrs Bennet to try and persuade Mr
Collins that there was still some hope.
[LIZZY runs to find MR BENNET, but MRS BENNET arrives shortly after.]
MRS BENNET [still sounding calm]
Mr Bennet, Mr Collins has proposed to Lizzy and she has refused him.
Now he begins to say that he will not have her, either.
Well, thank goodness for that. I mean, it seems a hopeless case, my
dear. What do you want me to do about it?
I won't marry him!
Then I shall never see you again.
Mrs Bennet, could you please try a little harder?
I'm just naturally an even, placid sort of person. I don't know why I
got the role. I suppose it must be because they all call me 'Mum' at
Well, now's your chance to be hysterical and over the top. You never
know, you might enjoy it.
MRS BENNET [with an effort]
Then I shall never see you again!
An unhappy alternative is before you, Elizabeth. From this day you
must be a stranger to one of your parents. Your mother will never see
you again if you do *not* marry Mr Collins, and I will never see you
again if you *do*.
Mr Bennet! [Tries her best to flounce out].
Hey, did you know that the Master's met Jane Austen?
My dear girl, you can't believe a word he says! I doubt if he's even
so much as met Mrs Radcliffe...
Part One - Part Three - Part Four - Part Five - Part Six