The characters' cross-purposed actions create a comic rhythm. They are behaving in ways that are untypical of them and that, as far as romance is concerned, are against their own best emotional interests. The repetition of Andie's efforts to get Ben to get rid of her feeds the comedy, and it is consistent with Bergson's identification of repetition of action or words as an index of the comic mode; he uses the Jack-in-the-box and the Punch-and-Judy action as metaphors for mechanical repetition of behavior, he refers to "a complete repeating-machine set going by a fixed idea" (388). Meanwhile, the romance is never far beneath the surface because it becomes clear quickly that, all agendas aside, Ben and Andie are genuinely being drawn together, before they even realize it. Equally, before they even realize it, they are putting the authentic side of their relationship in jeopardy. Bergson's idea of the source of comic characterization is relevant here:
Ben, for his part, virtually clings back. He becomes not a metrosexual conquest machine but a perfect gentleman. His preparation of the gourmet dinner is aimed to impress as much as it is to seduce. He grins and bears Celine Dion, hiding his disappointment at not getting to see the Knicks' playoff games (that the Knicks would reach playoffs is itself a fantasy situation), always keeping his eyes on the diamond prize. Although he explodes on poker night, his colleagues remind him that the diamond account hinges on his still-active bet, and he races to patch things up with Andie.
omputer to construct putative images of what their children will look like; this is day three of the relationship. She gives Ben's masculinity a feminine name, as effective at suppressing it as a cold shower would be. A perfectly normal junk-food junkie, she responds to his painstakingly prepared leg of lamb by explaining that she is a vegetarian. Surely that will make him dump her. A great Knicks fan, she entices him with the promise of great