How is’t, Laertes?

The note on Genius suggests that this line is evidence of Osric’s allegiance with Laertes and the king and/or his complicity in the plot against Hamlet.

I’m not sure it is. It could be, sure. But it could be that Osric is showing concern for Laertes because no one else is. Hamlet has Horatio so perhaps Osric sees Laertes as without a friend.

In the end, it is important that he asks Laertes how he’s doing because Laertes starts to give up the goods in response to this question.

I see how this line might support a case against Osric in a conspiracy case but there are other possibilities. Different productions will have different Osrics with different motivations. These kind of possibilities contribute to the reasons these plays can be produced over and over with seemingly endless variations.


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