Friday, May 3, 2013

Much Ado About Nothing

by William Shakespeare
(originally published in 1600)

In this Shakespeare comedy, we have two pairs to keep track of: Hero and Claudio, and Beatrice and Bernadick. Hero and Claudio seem well on their way to matrimony until Don John, the bastard brother of the prince Don Pedro, decides to make trouble and break them up. Meanwhile, Beatrice and Bernadick seem more interested in trading barbs than anything else, but their friends decide to set them up and make them fall in love.

While this play doesn't have many recognizable one liners that are constantly quoted even once we've forgotten they're Shakespeare, I found myself wondering why Much Ado wasn't one of the plays I studied in high school or college. Because for just pure fun, and funny moments, and witticisms galore, this has suddenly become one of my favorite plays. Plus, it's fairly accessible - I truly barely needed the notes, and it's been a few years since I've read Shakespeare. It's worth reading just for the (very minor) characters of Verges and Dogberry, the witless malapropists. Why haven't I read this before now?


Rachel Bradford said...

I loved this play when I was a teenager. I've never read it, but I've watched several different performances of it.

Mary said...

My mom loves the Kenneth Branagh version, which I've seen once. Now that I've read the play, I should really watch it again...