Many comparisons can be drawn between the plays Othello and Much Ado About Nothing, such as story line, characters, motives, and much more, which is not very uncommon as both plays are written by the same author, William Shakespeare.
The major themes in both plays are manipulation. Great men in both plays are manipulated by the villains into their evil deeds and they are both turned against their love of their lives, who has done nothing wrong to them. The major difference is that Othello is an tragedy while Much Ado About Nothing as a comedy, which might as well have ended as a tragedy just like Othello if they hadn’t found out earlier that Don John was behind everything.
The villains, Iago and Don John are the evil masterminds behind everything in both plays. Both of their actions are based on jealousy as both are jealous on Othello and Claudios and both wants revenge them. Iago didn’t get the position in the army that he wanted and Don John is jealous of Claudios who bonds better with his half brother than he does. What they both do is setting up false scene’s, creating false evidence, and manipulating the main character’s of the story, to doubt their relationships. Iago gets his hand on Desdemona’s handkerchief which he plants in Cassio bedroom, making it look like Desdemona has been unfaithful to Othello with Cassio and Don John does almost the same with Claudios and Don Pedro, except that he makes it look like a man is having sex with Hero (although it’s not her), and shows it to them the night before the wedding. A major difference between the two of them is that Roderigo in Othello actually questions Iago’s actions, while in Much Ado About Nothing, nobody seems to suspects Don John at all. Also Iago plays a bigger part in Othello as he controls and manipulates a lot more people and tricks people into doing his dirty work, as the assassination of Cassio. Don John on the other hand does only try two times in the play to destroy everything and he has two companions that does his bidding without asking questions. The two innocent maids are Desdemona and Hero, who both are the innocent victims of the manipulation as their partners stops trusting and believes they are unfaithful, which they are not! Desdemona, compared to Hero suffers a for more worse faith, as she ends up being killed by Othello, while Hero’s death is only faked. Both of them though still love Othello and Claudios, even though they knew they are about to die or they’d been ashamed in front of everybody and called a whore. Even though they are being treated horribly at the end, they still love them deeply. The heroes of the play, Othello and Claudios, are both important men in the military, they are both in love, and they both have insecurities. It’s from their insecurities that they are manipulated by the villains. After seeing what they believe is their partners cheat on them, they both decides to take action to restore their honors, although what they do is wrong. So both plays are very similar, although I wouldn’t personally say that they are. Of course you can see similarities between a lot of character’s and the plot, but I think Othello is way more based on insecure love, while Much Ado About Nothing has two love stories, one about Benedict and Beatrice who both are afraid of showing their love for one and another and then Claudios and Hero’s love story which I believe is very different from the one in Othello. Othello kills Desdemona in order to correct his honor, while Claudios just wants to bring shame upon Hero as he thinks she cheated on him before marriage and he does not kill her!