A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a classic Shakespearean romantic comedy. A genre, that attempts to catch the viewer’s heart with the combination of love and humor. It is light-hearted and usually places the protagonists in a humorous situation.
It is one of the many kinds of comedy which dates back to the 16th century stage in England and it has an identifiable formula. It has a main plot and a subplot. In the main plot an eligible man and woman fall in love with each other but cannot marry for some reason. Then some external agency like the disclosure of a secret or a trick by others brings the lovers together.
While many romantic comedies are chided for their predictable plotlines, it was William Shakespeare who first created these well-known story arcs. His comedies are known to strike a balance between expectation (the formula) and yearning (the fantasy). The following characteristics will summarise the reasons of this play being treated as a romantic comedy:
Light, humorous tone: The play features fairy magic (like Oberon's love potion), silly pranks (like the transformation of a guy's head into that of a jackass), and the botched performance of a play-within-the-play by a bunch of wannabe actors.
Clever dialogue and witty banter: Shakespeare is a huge fan of puns and snappy word play, so naturally, his characters know how to get their witty repartee on. Shakespeare reserves some of the best dialogues for his warring lovers, especially Oberon and Titania, and even the "rude mechanicals" manage to wow us with their clever banter.
Deception and disguise: Hermia and Lysander try to sneak away from Athens to elope (behind Egeus's back). Also, Titania and the young lovers have no idea they've been drugged by Oberon and his magic love juice.
Mistaken identity: Titania mistakes Bottom for a creature who is worthy of her love and affection. The same can be said of the other lovers who are... [continues]
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