“Bridget Jones’s Diary” the book became popular when I was still a teenager. I remember relating to it deeply when my teenage heart was broken and the thought that I could be worse off, meaning a thirty year old single smoker who drinks too much and isn’t particularly successful in her career was quite consoling. You surely know Bridget, the woman who goes for a bad boy instead noticing someone of much more value who is interested in her? You do and so did the world, making Bridget a symbol of her times. Therefore it didn’t come as a surprise that the book was followed by a movie which I considered much better than the original. Let’s be honest, Helen Fielding’s novel, was entertaining and an easy read but it wasn’t a masterpiece of literature. The movie was simply a good movie, with a smartly chosen cast and numerous entertaining scenes, at the same time devoided of the unnecessary and not so funny ones that were included in the novel.
With anticipation I was waiting for the seconds (yet again the book and the movie that followed) and I was, maybe not so surprisingly because they were sequels after all, disappointed. Less funny, less witty and quite predictable sequels made me promise that I will not continue with the series shall anything else ever been produced. The sequel was just a re-telling of the first story with the equally sweet, yet somehow difficult to believe in, ending.
When my mom sent me BJ part III “About the Boy” in the Christmas parcel I had a long internal monologue and eventually decided to read it. Mark is dead and Bridget starts to date again in the age of Twitter. 10 years older and a mother of two who didn’t get even a bit smarter commences a new adventure on the dating market in what turns out to be the same story all over again just with differently named characters.
Why did women (including me) get so crazy about this predictable series? Because it tells us lies about dating and love we would all like to believe in. We all would love to think that we don’t have to have a healthy self-esteem for a man to discover how very special we are, even though we actually feel way below average. We would all like to believe that we don’t need self-reliance and self-development and people who come from completely different educational backgrounds will be charmed by us all the same. Last but not least, the lie that the difficulties in the very beginning of courting are not actually a bad sign and we should still be expecting a happy ending.
Don’t but get me wrong – the series has got a lot right. How it feels when everyone keeps asking you about your prolonging single status, the uncomfortable situations that may result from it, how important drinking sessions with friends are when we’re single. However, apart from this value, the series just keeps repeating the old romantic fantasy of a prince who’ll come and save us from everyone, but first and foremost from ourselves.