Thursday, August 28, 2008

Ophelia As A Dog?

"...this is a canine version of Hamlet in which a) Ophelia is a dog and b) the story is told partly from “Ophelia”’s point of view."




Linda said...

So are you going to give this book a go and tell us what you think?

I'm always open to read or see a new take on things of, or from, Shakespeare. Not sure I can get around to the book for a while though.

But I did want to tell you about the Hamlet-with-a-twist performance I mentioned here a few weeks back. It's our local Shakespeare theater group's production and I've had a chance to see it twice now. The director decided to make Gertrude and Ophelia have an active role in what's going on.

For example, Ophelia is "in" on Hamlet's supposed madness. She is present when he gives his "to be or not to be" speech and she thinks they are pulling something over on Claudius and Polonius. But then when Hamlet later starts on the "nunnery" business she can't tell where he's coming from anymore and this begins her torment.

Then when Ophelia drowns, we, as the audience, are led to believe that Gertrude had a hand in it.

I'm sure it's not the first time it's been done this way, but boy oh boy did some people get bent out of shape over it! Some people simply did not like the director taking any liberties and messing up the way they thought it should be.

Personally, I thought it made for an interesting production. Why not. You don't have to agree in order to enjoy the effort. But I was most impressed with the actor playing Hamlet. I have seen several Hamlets and many actors can't channel all of the many facets to his character. Including some of the film actors, in my opinion. This one could do it!

Let us know if you give the Ophelia as a dog book a try!

Griffin said...

Bah! As any fule kno, Ophelia was originally a hamster not a dog. ... and Hamlet... don't even get me started!

Ophelia couldn't be a dog anyway, a dog is male. Besides, Ophelia has suffered enough.

Duane, I am sooo with you on this one.