This is dramatic irony because the audience know who the masked characters are but the actual characters don’t. This adds to the discourse comedy of the play because the characters are using different identities whilst protecting their real selves also the characters can actually gain somewhat such as what the other characters think of them. However, this plan could also be portrayed as disingenuous and untruthful because Don Pedro woos Hero due to his status and the fact that he is able to speak with royalty unlike Claudio. Don Pedro is the most elusive character in the play. He never explains his motivations for instance wooing Hero for Claudio during the masked ball.
From the very beginning of the play, Benedick and Beatrice’s attitude toward each other is a superb representation of this theme of deceit. The two menacingly fight with each other; both determined to better the other. In this “merry war” of witty insults, they are both deceiving themselves into believing they feel nothing for one another. This self-deception becomes even more obvious in masked ball scene, Act 2, Scene 1, in which Shakespeare uses physical deception by having Benedick disguise himself at the party. Benedick’s desire to know what Beatrice truly thinks of him is a sign of the love he feels for her, yet has chosen to not yet acknowledge it, even to himself.
Olivia also had her identity mistaken by her brother's best friend antonio. Viola said that she had no idea who he was and Antonio, still believing her to be Sebastian, rightfully got very angry and upset because he had considered sebastian as a good and loyal friend. This case of mistaken identity caused hurt feelings and confusion to those involved. Unlike the other cases of mistaken identity , this one had no humor purpose this incident is an interesting and more serious part of the play, which involves another mistake over Viola's identity. As a final summary, I think mistaken identity is a very important aspect of Twelfth Night: it provides humour, complications and interesting twists to the play.
Othello then sees and claims Iago to be ‘honest’ throughout the play and believing all the lies that is told to him. This shows that Othello was not responsible for the bulk of the tragedy but being very gullible and not thinking twice for his actions towards his surroundings and helping Iago’s plan for revenge. Quoted by Iago in Act 3 Scene 3, “Men should be what they seem”, gives the irony of illusion and reality. There is an extensive jealousy with Othello and thinking Desdemona is having an affair with Cassio using the napkin Othello gave to Desdemona as the symbol between them, building a chaotic wrath inside
He talks to himself about many things, but the main theme is theduality in any situation, meaning how something bad can so easily be turnedto good, and vice versa. While he seems to be focusing his entire speech tohimself on this idea, Friar Lawrence so easily contradicts it only a fewscenes later, when he marries Romeo and Juliet. By marrying the youngcouple, Friar Lawrence is not even following his own ideas, because eventhough marrying Romeo and Juliet is a good act, doing it so hastily makes it abad one. This ties in to another, closely related one of Friar Lawrence’sideas, which is that a good action done in a bad way can form a bad action, ashe says: “Virtue itself turns vice, being misapplied…” (II.ii.17). This againshows that the good act of marrying Romeo and Juliet, if done wrong bydoing it too quickly, can become bad act.
After hearing of Romeo’s banishment and being forced to marry Paris in the upcoming days, Juliet rushes to the Friar for advice. Although betraying Juliet, the Nurse’s decision to side with Lady Capulet was probably one of the smartest choices in the play. Unlike the Friar, the Nurse realized how outcome of Romeo and Juliet’s marriage could end badly. The Friar continues his irresponsible and childish actions by conjuring up a plan and potion in a matter of minutes. “Friar Lawrence, less ambitious and more desperate than his fellow manipulators, does not hope that Juliet’s death will dissolve the families’ hatreds but only that it will give Romeo and chance to come and carry her off” (Snyder).
Like Cordelia, the Fool is honest, but his comical language masks his honesty. The Fool enters the play while Cordelia exits, which most Shakespearean scholars suggest that the Fool is a spiritual twin that connects with Cordelia-“Prithee, nuncle, keep a schoolmaster that can teach thy fool/to lie: I would fain to learn to lie”-because he leads Lear onto the road of sanity and truth and when Cordelia reenters she represents his heart and sanity that have been reborn-“Ay, madam; in the heaviness of his sleep/we put fresh garments on him.” However, when the Fool enters the play, he wastes no time and reminds Lear of “nothing.” Indeed, there is a subversion of values, by dividing his kingdom he has become the “all licens’d Fool.” The Fool also tells Lear that he has become “an O without a figure,” because he has given away his scepter, his rod-which represents his manhood-and his whip which suggest that he has become the child to his daughters. The Fool like Edmund is a luminal character because he is sui generis. He cannot be labeled because he is a wise man and a Fool. Throughout the play he is marginalized because he is a Fool, but since he is the Fool no one pays attention to him and he uses this title as an advantage to speak of the truth.
Mistaken identity, dramatic irony and disguise serve a large role in making this play, Twelfth Night comedic. Malvolio is convinced Olivia is in love with him because of Maria’s letter. Sir Andrew is completely oblivious to the fact that Sir Toby Belch is befriending him to use him for his wealth. As Viola decides to disguise herself as a young man to keep safe, the potential for mistaken identity arises between her and her twin brother Sebastian. Meaning to embarrass and fool Malvolio, Maria, with the help of Sir Toby Belch and Sir Andrew, writes a mysterious love letter to Malvolio.
King Lear is the title character of the play, so it is obvious he is pretty important. And in the play, he definitely knows it. This is evidenced by his inflated sense of self; he has such an ego that he wants to hear his daughters profess their love for him, saying “Which of you shall we say doth love us most,” (Act I Scene I Line 51) and when one refuses, disowns her, as well as banishing his best friend for disagreeing with him. However, these rash actions suggest something more to me. I think that inside, Lear is insecure.
Watching Othello, I already knew the underlined themes and symbolism, etc. because I had gone over it in previous classes; however, while I was watching the play I tried to block out what I “imagined” had occurred versus what the director’s vision of the play was. One of the reasons I do not like to read a play before watching it is because it conflicts with my vision or version of what it would have been. For instance, I imagined Iago as a very sinful villain and not as slick as he was played; however I can see both character directions. None the less, the play and actors were very good and I loved how the director made use of the space.