So this morning, over my usual bowl of cereal, I had a very long and detailed train of thought, which I will now share with you in its condensed form.
Romeo and Juliet: the much-plagarized and re-imagined classic star-crossed love story. (wow, that was a lot of hyphens.) Look at Juliet, the lovely girl character. She is supposed to marry that guy Paris or whatever his name was, right? Now think about it. Juliet meets Romeo. You know the rest of that.
But look at this: when she’s “dead” (aka under the effect of the sleeping-so-she-looks-dead potion thing) Paris comes to her grave. Paying his respects to a girl who was supposed to marry him, who he cared very much about, who he was rejected by. He probably knew all about her and Romeo, in fact. But he still comes to her grave. He’s not off sulking in his bedroom, clinging to bitter feelings against her and her descisions. See, I think he still loves her anyway. Poor guy.
Then Romeo shows up. We all know he’s supposed to be the good guy, but see this from Paris’ POV! Paris is probably thinking, “This jerk has the nerve to show his face? After Juliet killed herself because she couldn’t marry him? He made her kill herself, which is basically like him killing her because he had to be an idiot and yell nice poetry up to her balcony and–” Well, then when he fights Romeo he’s kind of just defending Juliet’s honor because he loves her, blames Romeo for her demise. We all want to blame someone in a situation like that, and from Paris’ point of view Romeo is a nasty Capulet who ruined everything, which is what Paris has been raised to believe Capulets do by nature. Then Romeo kills Paris. The End.
Paris never knows that his love Juliet is actually alive. (Romeo doesn’t either because of the whole personal messenger mix-up… perhaps this play is not so much a tragedy as an advertisement for unlimited texting. can you imagine? “rmeo, jus thot id tell u im not rly ded ;]” )
And maybe…. maybe if Paris had known Juliet’s plan all along, he wouldn’t have fought Romeo that night. Maybe he would have loved Juliet enough to want her to be happy, despite his personal thoughts (none of them very nice) about Romeo. Certainly, if he loved her, he would rather have seen her and Romeo escape into the night instead of both lying stone cold in a vault somewhere.
That, I think, is the real tragedy of this play. Paris.
AHHHH! *shrieks* Paris is Peeta!!!!!!!!!!!
OMG. Just made up my mind.
Dang. I am gonna so hate the ending of the third Hunger Games book now. Because you know Katniss is so not going to end up with Peeta.
I can’t believe I never saw it before… Wow. about ten minutes ago I didn’t care if she picked Gale or Peeta, but right now I see that if she picks Gale I would not like it very much at all. Curses on thee, Capulets!! But at least Katniss realizes that she’s going to hurt someone either way, and that it’s going to hurt Peeta the most. At least she understands that he really loves her. I wonder if Juliet was aware of the extent of Paris’ devotion.
Sigh. Shakespeare thought of everything. His story has just revealed a layer that I am sure he thought about, but we watchers of plays never saw before. Another round of applause for the Bard. ;)