Last year, in recognition of Shakespeare Day, the staff offered some of their favorite quotes and adaptations of his work. This year, some staffers offer their appreciation for particular characters and what makes portrayals of them compelling.

Charlie
My two favorite Shakespearean renderings are Mercutio (Harold Perrineau) and Tybalt (Jon Leguizamo) in the Baz Luhrmann adaptation. In this version Mercutio is a gender nonconforming party boy who secretly pines for Romeo’s attention, while Tybalt’s seething aggression imbues the entire film with danger.

I wrote a poem with a pretty contemporary take on Ophelia, who is a character I think is written off too easily as crazy, because how would you feel if your boyfriend acted like Hamlet, ok?

Jeff
Count Paris. Poor dude just picked the wrong Capulet. If R&J were a romantic comedy, he would have probably lived and ended up with Rosaline.
Also an underrated character, in absentia, ‘cuz if it weren’t for her, Romeo would have never met Juliet.

Chae
My two favorite characters are Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Cameron) and Heath Ledger (Patrick) in 10 Things I Hate About You.  Cause you know, Robin and the Joker.

 

Bree
To quote Tyrion Lannister, “I have a tender spot in my heart for cripples and bastards and broken things.” As such, I’m exceptionally fond of Edmund in King Lear. He’s the first ‘villain’ I found not only understandable but genuinely charming and borderline likeable – not for what he does, but for his embracing of a stigma placed on him from birth solely due to the circumstance of his birth.

 

 


Bree is the Assistant to the Director and Social Media Coordinator. You can email her at btodish@uclaextension.edu.

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