The very first thing that surprised me in Shakespeare was the fact that I came across an unfamiliar in Romeo and Juliet.
This surprised me since I had read it so many times. The part that caught my eye was the fact that I never stopped to think about why Romeo kills Tybalt. It has always seemed to be that Romeo was revenging Mercutio to me, but this play I didn’t notice evidence to that. It seemed more that Mercutio’s big mouth was the only instigator in his death. The only inkling of animosity I could find between the two families came from the very beginning of the play. There is a scene set up that allows us to see that there is hatred between the two families.
This occurrence is most pronounced in act I. 1 ln. 58 when Tybalt proclaims his hatred of Montagues to Benvolio, but they never really get the chance to duel. Throughout the play there is increasing growth on the conflict between the two houses.
But in act III. 1 Tybalt is slain. This sets up the remainder of fate for Romeo. After all, these two houses are supposed to keep their distance.
But doesn’t it seem strange that a man would kill just out of dislike of a certain group. And out of that certain group Romeo kills the first Capulet he comes across. Yes, he is upset about Mercutio, but geesh! Talk about flying off The handle. The thing I guess I can most closely equate this to is the idea of Road Rage we see today. Still when some one is in a hurry And I change lanes unexpectedly and they flip me off, cursing at me all the way down the street I am surprised at the intensity of their outburst. It is a very surprising behavior, even for today, not to mention the small amount of reasoning behind it.
Romeo, don’t forget your chill pill next time. What I found most out of the ordinary in Twelfth Night was the fact that Shakespeare wrote comedies. I think of old time humor to be sarcasm or other such trivial writing, but this play was rather clever in the predicament that Viola gets herself into and how that is resolved in the end. To begin with I felt a bit of pity for this Duke’s servant, as she has to dress as a man to woo a woman for him. I didn’t feel sorry because she had to wear a disguise, but rather because I guessed that she would fall for hi, as he was seeking this other, unattainable goal. One of the most funniest and surprising acts to me is when Sir Andrew comes to the court toward the end of the play and cries wolf at Viola in disguise, and then punches her and she then, pummels the daylight out of him.
This is so funny to me because it is so unexpected. However what makes this surprising is the fact that it is so out of character for her. In all the instances of confrontation, Viola has been wary if not fleeting from these circumstances. Scene like the sword fight, however, she has to do it or else she’ll be found out. In other cases, like being confronted with Olivia’s devotion, Viola can brush her off and quickly try to flee. This gives us the idea of Viola as timid, intimidated, or shy/scared.
In the surprising act Viola does a complete 180 degrees and doesn’t even hesitate for a second. She is not persuaded or told or caring about letting herself be known. She just punches him, and instead of maybe catching her self out of fear, (like I supposed she would) she keeps right on hitting him. It is like an emotion of built up frustration from all the disguise and the forced sword fight and the pressures of not just Olivia but her whole court, that allow Viola to do this.
Not only that but in the movie version we watched, Viola even seemed to gloat a bit, like an overly proud man. A great, captivating moment. I was also surprised by another aspect of Twelfth Night. How does Olivia get .