I was amused by Jay Bushman’s surprise at the Gigi/Lydia shippers, but I really liked what he said about how they worked on how to avoid making it seem like Lizzie was replacing Lydia with Gigi.
I’ve read P&P a gajillion times, as I’ve mentioned, but only after watching the Lizzie Bennet Diaries did I notice the very striking parallels between the two youngest sisters. This is partly because in the book, their personalities are very different—Georgiana is debilitatingly shy, while Lydia is a shameless flirt. Still, they both were duped by Wickham, and Georgiana was lucky enough to escape the fate of being married to him while Lydia was lucky enough to escape the fate of being left by him and outcast from respectable society.
In the adaptation, Lydia and Gigi have fairly similar personalities. They are both energetic and engaging, with occasionally immature behavior, albeit not always in the same ways. So that really pointed out to me the parallels in their relationships to Wickham—which also ended more similarly (at least in the sense of them both having their hearts broken by him, though in different ways) than in the book.
Those parallels in turn helped me realize how, in P&P, Georgiana really does replace Lydia in Lizzie’s life, becoming a new younger sister with better morals and more openness to Lizzie’s good influence than Lydia had. Lydia was never redeemed for the reader or for Lizzie, even if her reputation was salvaged.
So I was interested in Jay’s comment that they didn’t want it to seem that way in the Lizzie Bennet Diaries. I think it worked. The parallels were clear, but the post-Pemberley videos made clear that her relationship with Lydia is deeply important to her. In fact, I loved how, when Lydia hit rock bottom, she essentially voiced her fear that Gigi had replaced her (“‘Lydia, you dragged Lizzie away from Darcy and Gigi where she could’ve been happy forever, you’re so selfish…’ Do you think I don’t know what they’re saying?”), and Lizzie tells her no, there is nowhere else she would be right now.
And I’d just like to say that I ship Gigi and Lydia. Not because Wickham broke their hearts so they should give up on men and become lesbians, but because they are both energetic people who I want to see happy, and I can see them being happy together. I’ve been enjoying a few fanfics about this.