Emma Approved BTS: Caroline Lee and her Happy Ending.

Filed in Behind the Scenes - EA, Emma Approved, News, Shows by on May 2, 2014

This post was written as an answer to a question on  my tumblr.

Q: I’m sad that there’s been so much hate for Caroline Lee. Your version of her gave me a lot of hope for her growth, and I hope that she doesn’t become a scapegoat for Emma to hate bc Emma screwed up with Harriet. Caroline is my favorite of all the characters and I hope she gets her happy ending.

Note: This question was asked BEFORE the Caroline/Elton arc on Emma Approved had played out.

Now that the arc is over I’m going to speak also as a huge Caroline fan. I never liked where we left her at the end of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. I believe that subbing in Caroline for Lady Catherine was the most debated creative choice within our team. How debated was it? Here’s the Lady Catherine version of this encounter (EARLY DRAFT, NOT CANON).

I’m not even sure if we’d all agree today that it was the best move to fill that plot point. In contrast, I remember there being almost no debate about the Lydia sex tape.

Bringing it to EA and Caroline replacing Augusta. On the surface, this was one of those moves that helped us both economically and creatively. We had one less person to cast/develop AND we got to bring back a very compelling character to inject a different dynamic into Emma’s world.

We started exploring this move right after our holiday party last year.


I know this move was very polarizing when it was released. You either loved the idea, or you hated the idea.  Now that it’s done maybe your perspective has changed, maybe it hasn’t, that’s your right as an audience member to make your own opinions. Personally, I loved watching Emma and Caroline go at it.

But in regards to Caroline’s happy ending, here’s how I see it. Back in The LBD story, Caroline wanted Darcy. She wanted Darcy so badly, she was willing to sabotage a very healthy relationship that her brother was having, in order to get him. But why exactly she wanted Darcy remains unanswered.

Was it because of his social status? Was it because of his wealth/power? Was it the way he carried himself? Was it for his tall/dark/handsome good looks? Any combination? All of it? She’s never told us. We can only speculate but we do know that she wanted some or all of those traits or else why would she want a man like Darcy in the first place?

Now, take those traits that Darcy has, take away the name Darcy and insert the name State Senator James Elton. All of it still fits right? Not perfectly, but I’d say its pretty close. Now anyone who reads the text and/or watches the shows knows that Darcy is the better person. (By the way, Paul Stuart did audition for Darcy way back in the day. Oh look, here’s a pic!)

Screen shot 2014-05-02 at 12.18.59 PM

Paul Stuart wearing scarves in the summer.

Anyway, so did Caroline get her happy ending getting engaged to Senator Elton? Well she got a tall/handsome man with social status, power, and ambition. Elton has a lot of what she was looking for. How will he end up treating her? and … how will she treat him? Who knows for sure. But I’d say a Caroline/Elton  is a power couple that projects to be a force in the land of politics.

The Happy Couple 9-color-BW

By the way, there were a lot of internal discussions about whether or not Caroline would still prefer Darcy over Elton OR if Elton would still prefer Emma or Caroline but that’s a discussion for another day.

So did Caroline Lee get her happy ending? Well a happy ending would mean that her story is over, and I don’t know if ANY of our character’s stories are truly over. But any potential spoilers aside, at this point in her life, she has everything she wanted. She said it herself at the end of that arc in EA. She already won.

Emma Approved returns June 2nd!


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