Shakespearean Character Spotlight: Richard III

Today's the day!

Yes, today's the day that the poor, mangled skeleton formerly known as King Richard III completes its journey from car park exhumation to cathedral re-interment. To commemorate the event, I thought it might be helpful to take a look at Shakespeare's version of this much-maligned English monarch. 

Shakespeare's Richard III is the villain you love to hate. He's charismatic and seductive, ruthless and manipulative, and a lot of fun to watch in action. He is, in short, a fantastic dramatic creation.

The real Richard III, of course, was a rather more nuanced character whose finer points - such as his strong leadership and introduction of political and judicial reforms - were all but obliterated by the pro-Tudor propaganda that proliferated after his demise. Whether or not he had a direct hand in the mysterious disappearance of his nephews, the Princes in the Tower, cannot be proved one way or another. Please don't send me angry messages, Ricardians. I'm a little bit scared of you.

Anyways... rest in peace, Richard. If it's any consolation, you've had a much more exciting afterlife than most other English monarchs.

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Don't Riddle Me This

Oh Pericles. You're such a wonderfully bizarre play. 

In case you haven't seen Pericles, it starts out with the noble Prince Pericles visiting the kingdom of Antiochus, whose beautiful daughter is up for grabs to whoever can solve a mysterious riddle. Of course, if you get the riddle wrong you die. That's the way these things usually work.

Seriously, Antiochus, that's the best riddle you could come up with? I defy you to write a riddle about an incestuous father-daughter relationship that is more obvious than that. 

All You Need To Know About Much Ado About Nothing

Tomorrow the RSC is live-broadcasting their production of Much Ado About Nothing! (They're calling it Love's Labour's Won and are presenting it as a sequel to Love's Labour's Lost, but it's still definitely Much Ado About Nothing.) To celebrate, here's a guide to all you need to know about the play! 

Check out my other All You Need To Know About [Insert Play Here] guides!