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A comparison between Keith Waterhouse's 'Billy Liar' and Willy Russell's 'Blood Brothers'

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Introduction

A comparison between Keith Waterhouse's 'Billy Liar' and Willy Russell's 'Blood Brothers'. The novel 'Billy Liar' was written in 1959 about Billy Fisher, a working-class 19 year old, who lives with his parents in the town of Stradhoughton (a fictional town) in Yorkshire. His job as a clerk for an undertaker bores him, which is why Billy spends his time living in fantasies and dreams of life in the city as a comedy writer. However, with three current girlfriends, his exaggerated imagination comes at a cost. On the other hand 'Blood Brothers' is a 1983 musical which revolves around twins separated at birth. The story is set in Liverpool, and begins in the late 1950s and ends around the 1980s. Throughout, the story is narrated. 'Billy Liar' is a kitchen sink drama, which deals with the domestic issues of a disillusioned youth and his dysfunctional family. The acting style is realistic and there is a fourth wall, there is also one actor for the role of each character. ...read more.

Middle

class people and it would also reflect the character of Alice Fisher who is always busy cleaning and taking care of everything. The set of 'Blood Brothers' changes to many locations such as Mrs Lyons house and the Mothers house. Therefore it cannot be too detailed and should be more of a representational set wherein props would be used in order to show the scene change, the actors themselves could do this quickly. 'Billy Liar' is set in the 1950s in Yorkshire. It focuses on a lower/middle class family. At this time coloured people were moving to the country and were beginning to be accepted, the play also shows how the older generation such as Florence still do not accept coloured people. It was also a new beginning for young adults who began to be called 'teenagers'. 'Blood Brothers' starts in the late 1950s and moves through to the 1980s covering a period of 30 years hence there are many political and environmental changes during the course of the story. ...read more.

Conclusion

She represents many mothers and that is why she is not given a name and is instead referred to 'The Mother' when she speaks. Both 'Billy Liar' and 'Blood Brothers' have the same theme of family. 'Blood Brothers' is about how the family is split and 'Billy Liar' is about a dysfunctional family and also shows how class affects everyone in society. Like Billy in 'Billy Liar' Mickey in 'Blood Brothers' is a disillusioned youth. 'Blood Brothers' shows how society moulds you. It shows how twins separated at birth follow two very different paths due to they different societies they grow up in. When watching 'Billy Liar' an audience would feel empathy for the characters. They would feel emotionally involved and become involved with the characters. For example they would feel sympathy for Alice as she cares about her son but she doesn't know how to help him. The audience would also recognise Billy's failure. However, in 'Blood Brothers' the audience is left thinking about political issues and the society we live in. The storyline of 'Blood Brothers' is purposely predictable so that the audience can concentrate more on the message. ...read more.

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