Twelfth Night Essay

Topics: Comedy, Humour, Amusement Pages: 3 (865 words) Published: December 17, 2012
All around the world, people have often turned to dramas, movies, shows, and plays as a source of comedy in their everyday lives. Some of the most comedic plays ever created were written by Shakespeare, and they continue to be enjoyed today. However, many have asked, “What makes a play enjoyable?” The logical answer is the characters, for without them, there is no story to be enjoyed. Shakespeare’s characters are humorous, and often give entire entire plays a light, fun sense, as shown in plays from All’s Well That Ends Well to Twelfth Night. In the play Twelfth Night, we encounter many enjoyable characters, from Feste to Orsino to Sir Andrew to Viola. By far the most enjoyable character in Twelfth Night is Maria.

It might be argued that Maria is not in the play as often as some of the other characters. We only see her significantly in four scenes: Act I - Scenes iii and v, Act II - Scene iii, and Act III - Scene iv. However, in these scenes Maria has by far the most enjoyable interactions with the other characters. This is proven in the very first scene in which we encounter Maria. It is very amusing to watch her join a drunken Sir Toby in mocking the clueless Sir Andrew in Act I - Scene iii. Another part of the what makes Maria’s interactions so amusing is her ability to successfully portray false emotions. In Act III - Scene iv, Maria leaves Olivia with no doubts that Maria is as clueless as she is in regards to Malvolio’s strange behaviour. Olivia proves this in the statement, “Good Maria, let this fellow be looked to.” (Act iii, Scene iv, Line 58) Maria would not be so “good” in Olivia’s eyes if she knew that Maria was truly responsible for Malvolio’s outrageous behaviour. Both of the aforementioned scenes skillfully portray Maria’s enjoyability through her encounters with the other characters in Twelfth Night.

Admittedly, Maria only showcases her mischievous talent in one major joke: her revenge on Malvolio. Maria plans this prank in Act II - Scene...
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