Thursday, March 3, 2011

Richard III: Act 2, Scenes 2-4


blessings in disguise. we were supposed to leave for Alabama today, but because of issues with getting the car, we have to hold off for 2 days. (moral of the story is: don't have a co-signer in another state.) i was so upset when i found out we would be behind schedule for our road trip, but today i have a little different perspective. if we had left today, the world we would have left behind here in Orlando would be a disaster. and 10 days later, we would come home to be faced with that disaster. and then have to start school the next day. the apartment is a pig sty, i didn't have the right books for my research paper, i hadn't made time for my phone interview, i think our dog needs to go to the vet, etc. but now we had tonight and an extra day to get life in order. we can get a good night's sleep tonight and really take care of all items on the pending list. sometimes it takes awhile to adjust to new plans, but once you do you might find that those plans are better anyway. it's a pretty good life lesson. i have to say that i keep learning that lesson over and over again, and yet i still crumble when my plans crumble. maybe one day i will figure it out.

and guess what else? the crap is hitting the fan in Richard-Land! holy guacamole. it just gets better and better. let's see if you can believe this:

act 2, scene 2
   (Clarence's children and Duchess, their grandmother.)
Boy: is our dad dead?
Duchess: no.
Girl: then why do you cry so much?
Duchess: i cry for the sickness of the king. it is 'lost sorrow' to cry for a dead person.
Boy: then he is dead. it is King Edward's fault, and God will revenge it.
Duchess: please calm down, children. the king loves you.
Boy: Uncle Richard told me that Queen Elizabeth turned Uncle Edward against our father. Uncle Richard cried and said we could always rely upon him.
   (Elizabeth, Rivers, and Dorset enter.)
Elizabeth: 'Edward, my lord, thy son, our king, is dead!'
Duchess: oh no. now i have lost two of my sons. Elizabeth, you are a widow, but you are still a mother. death has taken my husband and two of my sons.
Boy: you didn't weep for our father's death. how can we weep for your husband's death?
Elizabeth: i don't need help in my grieving.
Rivers: my queen, think of your son. send for him right away.comfort in him, crown him, and let yourself find joy in him.
   (Richard, Buckingham, and others enter.)
Richard: oh poor Elizabeth. i too grieve. (see quote below.)
Buckingham: we all still have each other. let's cheer up. let's get the prince and crown him.

act 2, scene 3
   (citizens on a London street.)
Third Citizen: our world is troubled.
First Citizen: no, Edward's son will reign. it will be fine.
Third: having a child as our king does not sound like a great idea.
Second: there is hope in him. he will grow up to rule well.
First: yes. all will be well.
Third: leave it to God.

act 2, scene 4
   (Archbishop, Elizabeth, and others.)
Archbishop: don't worry. your son will be here tomorrow or the next day.
Duchess: i can't wait to see the prince.
Elizabeth: neither can i. i hear he has grown so much.
   (Messenger enters.)
Messenger: Lord Rivers and Lord Grey have been captured and put in prison!
Duchess: by whom?
Messenger: by Richard and Buckingham.
Archbishop: for what?
Messenger: i have no idea.
Elizabeth: 'ay me, i see the ruin of my house!'
Duchess: not all of this again! oh God, end this or kill me so that i don't have to see any more death!
Elizabeth: let's go. we must find sanctuary.

funny how the Duchess bemoans the death of two of her sons. what about Rutland? also, i think it's important to know that in real life, Edward died five years after Clarence. way to infuse the play with some urgency, Shakespeare!

??????? the end of scene 2 really confused me. i don't think i understand what's going on? can anyone help? i'm looking at lines 124-the end. HELP! ???????

also, how weird is scene 3? i don't know if we've seen this kind of thing before. i don't think the scene really gives us any new information, other than the realization that the public is very much affected by all of this. i know this is blasphemy, but this scene feels dispensable after one read. perhaps a closer reading would reveal more? i wonder how often this scene is cut in performance. does anyone have experience with this?

i am also a little confused about who is on what side. i know Buckingham is with Richard, but to what extent? i feel like Richard would keep and is keeping even his closest confidante at arm's length. who else is with him? Hastings? Ratcliffe? to what extent? does anyone have input?

quote of the day: (ready for a laugh?)
'sister, have comfort. all of us have cause
to wail the dimming of our shining star,
but none can help our harms by wailing them.--
madam, my mother, i do cry you mercy;
i did not see your grace. humbly on my knee
i crave your blessing.'
     -Richard: act 2, scene 2

for tomorrow:
act 3, scenes 1 and 2

-rebecca may

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