anoteinpink replied to your post:i strive, when i talk about shit like hamlet, to…
this was a realization of mine while i was writing Trash Heap horrible fiction but i like how in the nunnery scene all her lines have ‘my lord’—bc whether or not it’s calculated it is sure effective in evoking demureness/respect.
also im fond of placing the emphasis like “*i* was the more deceived” (as opposed to hamlo there)
yeah absolutely! i mean whenever people run w/ the “ophelia was super duper upset b/c her boyfriend hurt her feelings” stuff its like, okay, sure but
1. really everything she does in that scene is calculated to a certain amount? as is hamlet’s. if we run with the basic assumption that hamlet KNOWS that they’re being watched.
2. but even if hams doesn’t know, Ophelia’s been coached on what to do here, she’s been instructed. the letter that polonius reads to the queen/has ophelia read to the queen (“doubt thou the stars are fire” etc ) isn’t, to me, even nesc. one that hamlet wrote? like you could interpret polonius as a Dude Out For Political Gain, and someone who sees this as an opportunity to leverage his daughter’s marriageability & closeness to hamlet to get them married off. but anyway the letter thing is sort of immaterial, because ophelia’s an ACTOR here, like hamlet is in so much of the play
3. so to me there’s always this moment of honest confusion for hamlet, where he’s like “wait, what? what remembrances?,” like he wrote her love poetry when he was fourteen but is confused as to the Relevance at this point.
4. and then ophelia’s like “my honored lord, you know right well you did, get with the program, nudge nudge.”
5. or alternately what would be funny would be, yeah, “oh, I was the more deceived” like, “you sure did send me a lot of shit poetry, hamlet. i didn’t return your favors but i sure am returning your favors now.” which i don’t know if that’s what you meant, but either way, its Humorous.
6. and also either way, like, if you compare this scene to her scene with laertes (who is her brother but they’re close in age and her brother’s not In Charge of her so that’s the closest association i can get here), to me she sounds kind of different? that doesn’t necessarily her change in speech is an affectation, it could just be b/c she’s having a very different sort of convo then she had with her brother at the beginning of the play, but still!!!!! the Effect she produces is very different.
anyway like, i don’t think you have to play the nunnery scene like a lot of people do, where it’s ophelia getting knocked around by hamlet. see: the branagh version, where ken b. is like DRAGGING kate winslet around the room. that’s a valid way to read it, may have even been the way it was MEANT to be read, but whatever man. ophelia is absolutely hamlet’s equal, there’s a lot of parallels that exist between them, and that’s a sort of mirroring that could be exploited SO MUCH MORE by directors/actors (or scholars/adaptation writers/etc). even little things. ophelia calls hamlet “the expectancy and rose of the fair state,” laertes calls ophelia “o rose of may.” ophelia’s an actor here, like, NO ONE GOES AFTER THAT, that she’s acting. even if we assume all the things people assume about ophelia — that she’s in love with hamlet, that hamlet was in love with her and is now breaking her heart, that this is in part what causes her actions later on in the play — she’s still acting, she’s under direction, she plays a part.
maybe tbh the problem is that ophelia nailed her part way too well.