Shout-Out to Shirly Henderson

Last night was a big night for me, as I introduced the boyfriend to the chickflick classic that is Bridget Jones’s Diary. I’ve been a fan of Bridget ever since stumbling upon Fielding’s book back in high school; who can resist the delightfully disheveled account of Bridget’s ever fluctuating weight, alcohol ingestion, and love life? While watching Bridget gave me the usual girly thrills that can only be brought on by Firth As Darcy, I took particular pleasure this time around in pointing out all of the Harry Potter alums that can be spotted mingling with Bridget’s crowd. Aside from the unlikely coupling of Madam Pomfrey and Professor Slughorn as Bridget’s kooky parents, one can’t overlook Moaning Myrtle as Bridget’s best friend Jude.

Introducing someone to a beloved favorite truly does allow you to view it through fresh eyes, as I discovered last night while whispering “That’s Moaning Myrtle” at Jude’s first appearance. No sooner had I uttered the words than my boyfriend and I simultaneously realized the irony of Bridget’s voice-over introduction: “Daily call from Jude. Best friend. Head of investment at Brightlings Bank, who spends most of her time trapped in the ladies’ toilet crying over fuckwit boyfriend.”

The coincidence was enough to make us both exclaim out loud. Apparently, such is Shirley Henderson’s lot in life, as we all know that Moaning Myrtle, too, spends her days crying in the second floor girls’ bathroom at Hogwarts. Since I love me some parallels in fiction (and fiction-inspired film), I couldn’t resist this shoutout to Henderson. Had anyone else noticed the similarity in characters, or was I slow on the uptake?

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