Most people work out that there are tricks in the world a little later than Ophelia does. I guess she really is an innocent. Even an 8 year old child in this day and age understands that not every one is honest, that the world doesn’t always do the right thing or the fair thing. A child can understand that a magician is tricking them and not REALLY performing magic. But it feels like this might be news to Ophelia. “No! He didn’t REALLY saw that woman in half and put her back together? There aren’t magic rabbits in that hat? He didn’t really put a rope back together by waving a wand over it?”
That sort of late revelation really might explain why Ophelia goes crazy so quickly. To suddenly be thrust into a world of distrust would be incredibly disruptive.
My friend’s father is declining rapidly. He was always a man full of vigor and vitality but has, in recent months, lost his ability to move with ease, has fallen, has relied on a wheelchair for the first time. His speed has shifted.
There are people throughout the world that have gone through this before. It is a common enough occurrence – but they were not my friend. And their father’s were not my friend’s father.
When we were first friends, I learned a lot about my friend’s father. He was a strong force in her life. When I met him, I felt as though I knew him already. He was so vividly and accurately described by her. Now, in my friend’s email update on the situation, the vividness in description is just as sharp. I feel as though I am a witness to something I am miles away from. I wish though, that I were closer, to be able to be more a support.
I watched the entire first season of Unreal in a couple of days. It was an extraordinary show by virtue of revealing the behind the scenes machinations on a reality show and by featuring two women at the center of it. But the thing that was most extraordinary was that the woman at the center was so incredibly complex. Her character was reprehensible in so many ways. She’s manipulative and cruel but somehow I liked and empathized with her anyway. When things went badly for her, I pitied her and wanted things to get better, to work out, to get the guy or the job or whatever she wanted.
She may be one of the first feminist anti-heroes. Ha! Screw you like-ability trap!
It’s probably significant that this line is spoken by a character called “Gentleman.” It is often played by a servant character of Horatio – but I think the Gentleman is on purpose. Only a gentleman might find the strength and have permission to speak to the Queen this way. A servant would likely not dare to advocate for the crazy woman outside the door. A servant might be like, “Uh. The Queen says no. Get that crazy lady out of here, pronto.”
Similarly, it’s a little weird when directors have Horatio speak these lines. It makes him seem a little presumptuous and familiar with his friend’s mother – when everything Horatio actually does and says is much more measured – with a kind of distance, a remove from the whole experience. He has a foreigner’s reserve – so to have him plead Ophelia’s case is weird.
This line is a Gentleman’s job.