Much Ado About Nothing Comedy Analysis

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Much Ado About Lear
(An Analysis of Comedy and Tragedy Through the Works of Shakespeare) Enter any theatre, and there is a very high probability you will encounter two masks. One will depict a joyful expression, and one will depict a mournful one. These represent the two types of shows that there are: dramas and comedies. While on the surface these may seem complete opposites, in truth they also have many similarities. “Shakespeare 's plays are all about one great general theme: disorder” (Johnston). No one is better at writing both comedy and tragedy than William Shakespeare, as evidenced by two of his most known works: Much Ado About Nothing, and Lear. Much Ado About Nothing is a comedy in the most traditional sense. “In the
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Like most plays, they each have a protagonist with a so-called ‘fatal flaw,’ a lapse in character that leads to conflict within the story. For Much Ado About Nothing, the protagonist Claudio is gullible, and believes the lie that his love is unfaithful to him. In King Lear, Lear is prideful, and takes his daughter’s refusal to pour praise onto him as a personal affront. Another similarity between the two shows would be the use of misconception to further the plot. Lear believes that his daughter does not care for him and so takes away her inheritance, while Claudio believes that his betrothed has been unfaithful and so shames her on their wedding day. The final similarity is Shakespeare’s use of ‘funny characters,’ those whose value seems to be nothing more than to provide the audience, usually the groundlings, with same base form of amusement. Lear has his jester, and the maid Margaret plays the part in Much Ado. However, often these characters will be given deeply philosophical lines and essential parts in the furthering of the plot, which go unseen by the average, non-academic viewer. “While we might think little of the buffoonery of a Nick Bottom or the witticisms of a Feste, Shakespeare, his contemporaries in the early modern professional theatre and especially his audiences, valued clowning highly – and scrutinised it carefully in its
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