Blood Brothers Essay

Topics: Social class, Working class, Marxism Pages: 5 (2049 words) Published: January 6, 2013
Blood Brothers is a popular play by Willy Russell. It was written and first performed in 1981. The play tells of twin brothers, separated at birth, with one kept in a low-class family and the other is adopted into a wealthy family. The characters of Mrs Johnston and Mrs Lyons, the mothers, are total opposites. Mrs Johnston is a struggling, single mother of seven, with another two on the way, whereas Mrs Lyons is a privileged, yet childless, married woman.

The opening scene started with a funeral. I think that was effective because immediately it captures your attention and you become eager to know whats going on. Mickey and Eddie lay side by side both dead. The narrator then tells us the story of what happened. This is cross-cutting as it shows a different time period then returns to the current one. The director was trying to give the audience a glimpse of the future so it can help them make conclusions which could be wrong then they’re given unexpected surprises and this all engages the audience. However in the end there is a definite ending and the audience become aware of that due to the way the play began.

The Narrator played a key role in the performance. Firstly he was like the host. He constantly kept appearing and gave the performance a flow. It seemed as if he had the remote to slow things down when he wanted and also to speed them up. He wore a smart black suit which gave him a high profile. His voice was used quite well because he adjusted it to make it loud and directive as a narrator should have but it also had a bit of power in it. During the performance he popped up here and there just to clarify things for the audience. He also engaged white some of the characters. I think the director wanted interaction between them to show the audience a unique perspective of the actors also to remind them that he is significant as he represents fate and destiny which is why the characters also interacted. Because fate and destiny involved everyone in the story.

In terms of clothing Mrs Johnstone’s apron was very significant because to me it represented a turning point. She had her apron on for the whole of the first half whilst they were poor and lived in a poor place. But as she was offered to move to the country side her apron came of and this showed a change. She didn’t wear an apron anymore which showed that she wasn’t working either.

During the play the actor that played Mickey acted as a child, playing and going to school, and as an adult worked in a factory but for most of the time was unemployed.

Culturally Mickey's status was low, he came from a working class background from a big family with little money. It is evident Mickey comes from a lower class background because of his dirty face, dirty ragged clothes and his northern accent. His clothes were quite large and seemed as if they weren’t his size. This shows his clothes might have been passed down which thus shows they aren’t able to afford so many clothes.

Socially, amongst his peers Mickey again has a low status. He often talked of how his older brother Sammy would beat him up and boss him around. In the scene where all the children play together and sing a song, no one listens to Mickey, they laugh at him and mock him, with the exception of Linda who obviously likes him as she sticks up for him. It is around her and Eddie that Mickey has an equal status, sometimes a higher. For instance Linda sticks up for Mickey and follows him around, and Eddie is impressed by his `smashing' swear words and tries to copy them, at one point telling his mother she is a `fuckoff'. He also copies the things Mickey does, such as pulling his shirt down over his knees. As a child Mickey is disobedient, as well as being a typical child of high hyper activeness and imagination. This is shown when he rushes around the stage on his imaginary horse whooping and yelling playing `Cowboys and Indians', and playing with toy guns, usual of young boys. His...
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