William Shakespeare 's Twelfth Night Essay examples

1039 Words Feb 29th, 2016 5 Pages
In a classic segment of Sesame Street, Big Bird sings “One of these things is not like the others” when referring to the largest of four bowls of bird seeds. The children must identify which item does not belong, and why. This task proves very easy, demonstrating that humans can easily single out an anomaly from a pattern. This theme corresponds with William Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night, a romantic comedy with an outcast. The main characters, Orsino, Olivia, and Viola, entangle themselves in a hopeless love triangle and act without reason. Even many of the minor characters fall under love’s spell or behave merrily, enjoying the exaggerated drama. However, one character detracts from the lighthearted mood of the play: Malvolio. As the steward of Lady Olivia’s household, Malvolio regulates the servants with strict protocol. His pompous attitude annoys everyone, especially Sir Toby, Andrew, and Maria. They trick him into embarrassing himself in front of Olivia, and then treat him like a madman. When the trio reveals their prank at the end of the play, Malvolio remorselessly storms off the stage in an unresolved conclusion. Shakespeare uses Malvolio’s excessively serious nature to warn against the dangers of pride. Early in the play, Shakespeare provides descriptions of Malvolio by other characters that diagnose pride as the cause of his humorless and condescending disposition. During the introduction of Olivia and her court, Feste, the fool, jokes about the death of…

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