Emma Approved and Other Jane Austen Inspirations

Pride and PrejudiceLast year I blogged about the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, which was a really wonderful and Emmy winning video series that told the modern day story of Lizzie Bennet and her sisters based on the original characters from Pride and Prejudice.

Fans of that series now have something new to watch! Emma Approved is a video series from the same producers and again is a modern day retelling of a classic Austen work. I was able to get caught up on the first five episodes today during lunch. They might be harder to get into because Emma Woodhouse isn’t initially as likeable of a character as Elizabeth Bennet, but having read the book (both for school and leisure!) I am feeling confident that she will grow on me with time. It isn’t too late to get caught up with either story, no matter if you are an Austen super fan or just a casual admirer.

Creative takes on Jane Austen’s works aren’t especially new. Authors such as Rebecca Ann Collins, Sharon Lathan, and Abigail Reynolds have written sequels that continue the stories of beloved characters as they settle in their lives, have children and grow old. Can’t get enough Mr. Darcy? You are in luck!

There are also a Jane Austen Mystery series by Stephanie Baron.  These mysteries don’t feature Austen characters, but Jane Austen herself as the amateur sleuth trying to solve murders! Fans of her original setting and tone will approve. Jane Austen also shows up as a character in a modern day series in which the setting and tone couldn’t be any different from Baron's mysteries. In the Jane Fairfax series by Michael Thomas Ford, vampire Jane has disguised herself and works in a modern day bookstore and has wacky adventures in love and life, sometimes accompanied by Lord Byron and Charlotte Bronte (also vampires).

Vampires and Austen don’t seem like a good fit, but don't forget there is also the highly creative and super creepy Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. And to switch tones to the super sweet and heartwarming, try the graphic novel adaptations of both Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice. Austen may be long dead, but her work lives on and on!