Losing the Labor of Love’s: Wrap-Up

Ah… Love’s Labor’s Lost.  How to sum up?  For those who’ve been following along this month, you probably know that I’m not a big fan of the ending of the play.

But like the last competitor in a judged competition, it’s the last performance that sticks in the head.

sorry for that subliminal Olympics reference… have. no. choice.  am. slave. to. television.  more. curling. please

So despite the things I really like about the play:

  • the explosion of linguistic variety,
  • the wild bawdiness,
  • the self-mocking of the male lover stereotype;

it’s the cruelty of that ending, coupled the thwarting of the romantic comedy’s conventions (by the ending), that just kills my enjoyment of the play.  Overall, I’d rate this at the bottom of the comedies, and almost the bottom of the Canon thus far (that First Part of Henry the Sixth still sits at the bottom of the barrel for me).  For me to enjoy the play (in production), I’d need a way to play up the language and the bawdiness, and a way to play down — WAY down — the cruelty of that last scene, and I think that means some cuts and some warping of the language (in much the same way as Branagh did in his musical version of the play… a version that in hindsight is growing in its charm and enjoyment for me).

For those dying for some clips from the Branagh piece (as well as some from the 2009 touring production), we’ve put together a LLL YouTube playlist on our BSP page.

Sorry there’s no other clips, but… there were no other clips.

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