The Deception of Benedick in Act 2 Scene 3 of William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing
Deception plays a fundamental role in Much Ado About Nothing because it is one of the elements of laughter in it. It normally originates from Don Jon the bastard brother of Don Pedro, who wants to be the Prince causing havoc to Don Pedro and his friends. However this deception doesn't originate from Don Jon's malevolence, but from Don Pedro, Claudio and Leonato, as they try and deceive Beatrice and Benedick that the other is madly in love with them. Don Pedro came up with the plan at the masked ball" I will in the interim undertake one of Hercules labour which is to bring Signor Benefice and the lady Beatrice
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He complains that Claudio has changed, 'I would have known when there was no music with him but the drum and the fife, and now had he rather hear the tabor and the pipe', implying, he is becoming more feminine and insinuating that Claudio has changed to listening to elegant music rather than the sound of war (drum and the fife). Benedick obviously disprove of Claudio falling in love with Hero. He continues by implicating the changes of Claudio, causing him to wonders if it will ever happen to him, 'May I be so converted and see with these eyes' (rhetorical question).Benedick then refers to his ideal woman setting his standards too high that no woman could match it, "wise mild, and fair". This is ironic as he refers mostly to Beatrice except she isn't mild. However he probably wants a woman who isn't mild as he enjoys his "Skirmish of wit" with Beatrice. After setting the standard too high he ends with a mild joke, 'and her hair shall be the colour it pleases God', implying the ridiculousness of his standards. The audience later see Claudio and the others approaching as Benedick finishes his soliloquy. Benedick refers to Claudio as 'Monsieur Love', an epithet of sarcasm. He then hides due to their obsession of talking about love.
The stage directions are important enhance the effects of the deception. As this scene is