The Captivating Characters in Macbeth and The Crucible
For a play to meet with success, it is essential that it include a cast of interesting and captivating characters. Without interesting characters, the audience would not only be confused by each unimportant character, but possibly puzzled by the plot, disinterested in the theme and ideas, and worst of all, bored by the entire story.
For instance, in "The Crucible" by Arthur Miller, we take an immediate interest in 17-year-old Abigail Williams. Miller portrays her as a vindictive, wicked and persuasive girl. Perhaps persuasive is too mild an adjective, but her evilness or malevolence is indoctrinating, and her manipulative capability leaves the other girls no choice but to follow her lead. Abigail psychologically forces the others to obey her, and is not reluctant to threaten them, or do them physical harm! She is the spark that ignites the inferno of mistrust, guided more by an obsessive love than by malice. There are two sides to Abigail's nature which are portrayed throughout: the brutal and menacing side, and the heart-broken, passionate side. If Abigail was just a simple, average schoolgirl with not much involvement or relevance to the plot, we may not immediately take such an interest in her.
Similarly, at first, John Proctor appears to be a humble, ordinary farmer with a wife and two children. As the play unfolds, we discover that he is a man with a significant past; a man who has a story to tell. He and his wife are central characters to the play. He has had an affair with Abigail Williams, a girl years younger than hims...
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...houghts and feelings; their inner journey is described verbally, so that the audience receives a first-person recount from the key characters.
The more successful the characters are, the more popular a play becomes. Popularity is evidential by the length of time that a play is discussed, studied, screened, viewed or performed. Conclusively, a poor play with a poor cast, all similar in nature and character, with monotonous scenes which do not contrast, will not last long, and will not have a positive effect on the audience. But a play such as "The Crucible" or "Macbeth", with many contrasting scenes and characters, whether they be heroic or vindictive, short-tempered or forgiving, will undoubtedly remain successful, maintaining its position as a work of respected literature.
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