The PHS Poll: Wedding Fever
With the royal wedding still on our minds, we look at our favorite romance wedding tropes. Consider yourself cordially invited to vote for yours!
Robyn Rychards—I Heart A Marriage Of Convenience
With Prince Harry’s nuptials, royal romance has been on everyone’s mind lately. Many a royal wedding has been a marriage of convenience, and I love reading a romance which features that trope. Though it doesn’t have to be a royal marriage of convenience for me to enjoy it, there’s certainly something more romantic when it is.
I get an extra bit of satisfaction with the happy ending when it’s for two people who marry because either a circumstance forces them to, or it gets them out of a bind. Their life isn’t going the way they’d hoped, they’re stuck in a situation beyond their control, and it’s such a lovely surprise for them to discover they love each other, and the future is bright after all! Maybe that’s because I have a weakness for angst and drama… Or that one of my favorite tropes to both read and write is forced proximity, and a marriage of convenience falls into that category.
As I mentioned initially, a marriage of convenience isn’t out of the ordinary for royalty, but that’s not the only circumstance that may call for two people getting married when they aren’t in love. Sometimes it’s between two people who don’t know each other very well, but it’s in their financial best interests to do so. I remember reading this set up in a lot of the old Harlequin Presents; something along the lines of, the heroine’s father arranges a marriage for her that benefits his company, or the heroine is in a financial bind and the hero bails her out on the condition she marries him as he's in need a wife, maybe for business reasons, or family obligation. I couldn’t begin to tell you how many of these I read as a young teenager. Too many for my own good, I’m sure!
These days, a more popular reason for a marriage of convenience is because the woman is pregnant, frequently because of a one-time fling, or a moment of weakness with a hero she thinks is no good for her. All of these circumstances that lead to a marriage of convenience can make an enjoyable read, but my favorite is the royal marriage in order to further their country’s interests, and if it’s a historical, even better!
Kristina Knight—I Heart A Cinderella Wedding
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, excuse me, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, has me in a bit of royal wedding fever. Seriously, 94.3% of the time, I kind of forget there is a British monarchy that is still relevant. But the weddings, oh the weddings bring the royal family to the top of my mind every time.
I like the fashion and all the fascinators (seriously, the fascinators are fascinating!) and the pomp and the circumstance. More than that, though, in both the wedding of Prince William and Kate and now Prince Harry and Meghan, it’s the love that you can see simmering between the couples. In both cases, there were moments when, despite the cameras and attention and cheering crowds, these couples were just couples. Together and connected in a way that I think we all want to be connected.
This year, the royal wedding has me thinking about my favorite wedding trope. I love a blackmailed royal bride, and I love a royal wedding of convenience, and I even love an amnesiac royal bride or groom. I think my favorite royal wedding trope, though, is the Cinderella trope. I don’t love the Cinderella trope because the heroine is rescued from her powerless, unfulfilling life and taken off to live in a castle. Quite the contrary. I’m more a ran of the Drew Barrymore ‘Ever After’ Cinderella re-telling than of the sanitized Disney version. What I love about the Barrymore retelling is the challenge that Cinderella lays out to the hero: the challenge to look beyond his boredom, his privilege, and his money and see the reality of the world in which she lives. A world where women—and sometimes men—are traded, bought, and sold. A world where women are seen only as accoutrements to a man. A world where money, not intelligence or education, was revered.
In that story, Cinderella wanted, not to be rescued, but to be treated as a worthwhile human being. And in challenging the Prince to see her reality, she helped him change not only his worldview, but the actual world around them.
That is the draw of the Cinderella trope for me. Done well, the trope isn’t only about a woman being rescued to live a life of luxury. It’s the story of a woman and a man being brave enough to look beyond what is comfortable and familiar to them, and in looking past their comfort, to perhaps make the world a stronger, better, more comfortable place for everyone.
Carolyn Hector—I Heart The Faux Fiance/Wedding
Admit it!! You watched the wedding. The Royal Wedding. If you didn’t wake up at the crack of dawn, I know you at least have gushed over the photos on the internet. I’m a writer. Truthfully, I did both. As a matter of fact, I’m still fawning over the sweet photos of the happy couple gazing into each other’s eyes. But as a writer, I always have this “what if” question nagging me in the back of my head. Don’t pop me on the back of the hand for my thoughts, but here we go…
What if there was a motive behind the wedding, besides the obvious true love one. What if Harry wants to step up as a leader? What better way than with a beauty actress/humanitarian who is truly selling the look of love? What would the world have done if Meghan and her mom kept driving? What if they’d just eloped?
Let’s talk wedding tropes! I am a sucker for a marriage/ faux fiancé of convenience. It’s like watching my husband relive his football days on the field with our teenage boys. We all know both are going to end up with a someone’s back being blown out, a bed, ice, and a lot of moaning—yet we can’t look away.
What are some of the convenient reasons to get married or fake an engagement? Let’s see… Someone is pregnant, needs to show stability before inheriting a pot of money, or has to look good for a job promotion on the company retreat. Stick two people together for a length of time—and just as sure as someone single is going to make a dive for the wedding bouquet this year—your hero and heroine are going to catch feelings. My heart just soars at that point when they realize they’ve accidentally fallen in love.
So, what is your favorite wedding trope? Vote for it below or tell us what's missing from our list in the comments or using #CordiallyInvited on our Social Media.
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