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blood bros

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Introduction

English and English Literature Coursework Willy Russell: 'Blood Brothers' Which character in the play changes most? Explain: * How the character changes * The characters role in the play * How the playwright uses dramatic devices * How the characters use of language or the language used about the character influences your reaction to them * How the characters situation and actions reflect social, historical or cultural background Russell was brought up in Liverpool and he wrote this play in the nineteen seventies. In the play Russell shows the poorer working class background of the Johnston family and the richer more financially secure middle class of the Lyons family. The play is centred on twins who are separated at birth but by fate they meet and ironically swear to become blood brothers. Russell starts the play with Mrs Johnston who is a working class Liverpudlian and a deserted wife with seven children and she is again pregnant but this time with twins. She is forced by Mrs. Lyons to give her one of the twins and the plays unravels by showing how the twins grow up and meet. Although their liking for each other prevails at the start of the play their contrasting backgrounds and upbringing forces them apart and tragedy occurs at the end because this contrast prevents them from having a proper understanding for each other. The play starts with the narrator who summarises the play so we have an idea of what's going to happen and there is no curiosity. He starts off the play using the words 'so did you ever hear the tale...'and ends in the words '...let the story begin.' These words destroy this illusion of reality and make us become more detached from the action on stage so that we become more objective about what we see. Having the narrator on stage makes us see him as the play's conscience and he makes us believe there is going to be a tragic ending. ...read more.

Middle

Mickey is first introduced in the play in Act 2 scene1. The first words he speaks on stage are 'Mother. Will you open the bleeding door or what?' The word 'bleeding' to me stands out a lot as it is not a word you would expect to hear from someone who is only seven! The rest of this scene shows us a typical scene in many households today where Mickey, who is the youngest, complains to his mother about his brother taking his things off him. Towards the end of this scene Mickey says a poem which shows us how he sees the world and how he'd love to be older. This adds humour to the play and is an important role of Mickey's as a child. Act 2 scene 2 is an important scene due to Fate. Despite the fact that both mothers have tried to keep the twins apart they meet up. On stage we notice a huge difference between Edward, the middle - class twin and Mickey the working class one. It is in this scene that you see how your upbringing affects you and differentiates you from others. Immediately in this scene you realise how Mickey is the more dominating twin and how he likes to be in control. In this scene Eddie mentions looking up the 'F word' in the 'dictionary' and even though Mickey doesn't know what one is he tries not to show this and says 'it's a thingy isn't it.' This scene also shows how Eddie is really attracted to Mickey because he knows all these interesting words and does all these naughty but, yet fun things, which Eddie is not familiar with because he is more sheltered, well mannered and cultured. Towards the end of this scene Mickey and Eddie become blood brothers but when they are swearing the oath Mickey's mother interrupts and this is a symbol that shows us they won't stay blood brothers forever and there will always be something between them. ...read more.

Conclusion

As a result of the argument Mickey realises he has accomplished nothing in his life 'Eddie, Eddie! And I thought it was. I thought it was my job. My house ... my wife.' Another quote I've found to back my point is 'Have I got anything that doesn't belong to Eddie?' The audience feels sorry for Mickey as at the start he is quite scary but, we later realise why he has changed and become depressed and sad. Finally at the end we are again reminded by the narrator that this is just a 'tale' and a 'story' but this makes it more universal rather than just about one particular set of twins. Looking over the scenes from where Mickey is first introduced to where he dies I see him change a lot due to many serious issues I have discussed in this essay. At first we see an innocent little child getting into trouble but having the time of his life and then later on we go on to see how he becomes depressed, gets involved with crime, and turns into the 'workhouse donkey' 'old before his time' as he struggles to provide for his wife and family on minimum wages. The main point that gets to him at the end is the fact that he was Eddie's twin but Eddie got everything and he got nothing but pain and sadness. I think the most moving line in the play is where Mickey asks his mother 'Why didn't you give me away mam?' Mickey's role in the play was to be the poorer one of the twins who feels he got absolutely nothing out of his life at the end before he was killed apart from sadness, anger, jealousy and sorrow for himself. He ended up losing his most prized possession his wife whom he couldn't keep happy and his self confidence which left him a long time ago. I think this change is the result of his social background and Russell depicts him as caught in a cycle of poverty and ultimately despair. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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