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Pride and Prejudice (1967)


Warning: screenonline full synopses contain 'spoilers' which give away key plot points. Don't read on if you don't want to know the ending!

Episode 5, 'Elopement':

Darcy visits Elizabeth at the Parsonage. He explains that he stood in the way of her sister Jane's and Mr Bingley's romance because at the time he had justifiable objections to her family and doubts about Jane's affections. His intense dislike of Mr Wickham, he insists, is because of Wickham's unscrupulous nature: he once attempted to elope with Darcy's sister, Georgiana. Mr Wickham has also mismanaged his inheritance and incurred debts.

Elizabeth and Jane return to Longbourn to find Lydia planning a trip to Brighton with family friends. When Elizabeth warns her father that Lydia will embarrass the family, he laughs. Later, Wickham slyly asks Elizabeth about Darcy, but she defends him, adding that he improves on acquaintance.

Elizabeth visits the North with her aunt and uncle. They call at Darcy's estate Pemberley House, believing him to be away. The housekeeper shows them around Pemberley, encouraging Elizabeth to admire Darcy's portrait and complimenting her master profusely. Darcy suddenly appears and is surprised and pleased to see the embarrassed Elizabeth. He shows them around the estate and asks Elizabeth if he can introduce his sister, Georgiana.

Later, Elizabeth meets Georgiana, and becomes reacquainted with Mr Bingley and the Miss Bingleys. Bingley expresses surprise to hear that the Bennet sisters were recently in London, and chastises his sister for not telling him (Mr Darcy graciously takes the blame upon himself). The Miss Bingleys taunt Elizabeth regarding Mr Wickham and hint that there have been numerous intrigues in Hertfordshire, but don't elaborate further. Georgiana is upset to hear Wickham's name mentioned.

After Elizabeth and her family leave, the Miss Bingleys scorn them as provincial nobodies, but Georgiana defends them. When Miss Bingley criticises Elizabeth's appearance, Darcy defends her, proclaiming her one of the handsomest women of his acquaintance.

Back at Longbourn, Kitty reveals Lydia's secret elopement with Mr Wickham. Mr Bennet fears that Wickham has no intention of marrying Lydia because she has no fortune. Mrs Bennet immediately blames him for the scandal. Mr Bennet declares his intention to travel to Gretna Green to intervene, and sends for Elizabeth.

Darcy finds Elizabeth distraught at the news, and she tells him the whole story. He offers to assist in any way he can. On the way home, Elizabeth realises that she loves Darcy, but the situation is now hopeless because of the shame Lydia has brought upon them.