Thursday, April 7, 2011

"Romeo & Juliet"

Feeling like I have a great love story to write, but not knowing anything about how to write one, I decided a good place to start learning is to read "Romeo and Juliet" by William Shakespeare since I've seen two movie versions several times.

Do you remember the story? A teen boy and girl from feuding families fall passionately in love and the only way to solve the mess is to fake their own deaths so they can run away to be together.

More or less.

It turns out to be much more.

First of all, Romeo is already in love with Rosaline to the extent that he crashes a party thrown by Daddy of the feuding Capulets in order to see her.

Tybalt, Juliet's cousin, spots Romeo and reports him to Capulet with the intention of having Romeo thrown out or worse.

Surprisingly, Capulet thinks Romeo has a decent reputation and tells Tybalt to leave Romeo alone. Perhaps Capulet is feeling magnanimous because Paris asked to marry Juliet who told her parents she's willing to think about it and they'll get to know one another at the party.

Except Romeo and Juliet do the love-at-first-sight thing at the party. Rosaline and Paris are forgotten as they pledge their love, not knowing anything about each other.

They must've been hot-hot-hot to fall so fast for each other, don't you think?

Somehow (you need to read or see it to learn how if you don't already know), they learn they're from rival families, decide to overcome it with a secret marriage, and the rivalry breaks out again with Tybalt killing Mercutio and Romeo avenging Mercutio's death by killing Tybalt.

As a result, Romeo is exiled and Juliet mourns his leaving.

Understandably, Capulet assumes Juliet is mourning the death of her cousin, Tybalt. However, it's beyond me why he thought getting married to Paris in two days would end her grief. It's also beyond me why Paris would agree to it. What decent man wants to consummate his marriage to a grieving young woman, sobbing in their marriage bed?

So, there are the main male characters of this love triangle:

1. Romeo, an outrageously rude party-crasher whose fickle-mindedness causes him to dump Rosaline for Juliet in a heart-beat

2. Capulet, the father who thinks getting married will dry the tears of his grieving daughter, and

3. Paris, who wants to wed and bed the grieving Juliet.

In my opinion, they're nuts.

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