Character Analysis: The Roaring Twenties

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The Roaring Twenties is in its full swing for Helen Burns, a young woman growing up in New York City, but not everything is as rosy as it may seem. The previous year, her brother John, a known Mafia member, had gone missing. The police have refused to work on the case and simply pronounced him dead. Now, Helen finds out John survived and in desperate need of help. He begs Helen to give him shelter, which she does so without hesitation, despite her best friend’s advice. They try their best to keep it a secret, but once the chief of police, Robert Razner, finds out, both Helen and her friend are accused of associating with the Mafia. He offers to forget the entire thing if only they turn John in for interrogation. The Mafia promises safety if they join them instead. If there’s one thing certain in this never-ending cycle of lies and deceit, it’s that not everyone will make it out alive. The bulk of this story revolves around exploring loyalty, especially that to one’s family, friends, and state. How far should one sacrifice themselves for the sake of someone else? And what should happen if these loyalties conflict with each other? This idea of putting one party over the other would resonate well with the teenage audience, with many of which…show more content…
This reimagining solves this problem by taking the issues of Antigone and putting it in a time and place more people are readily familiar with and interested in, namely, 1920s New York City. It also allows for the exploration of loyalty dynamics within the Mafia and the conflict Mafia vs state, a topic many people are interested in. The recent success of the 2013 movie The Great Gatsby has revived more interest in this particular moment in time. Many of the people who saw the movie would also read the book, since both works focus on a darker side of the 1920s that most
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