The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.0350  Monday, 9 February 2004

From:           L. Swilley <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Friday, 6 Feb 2004 07:19:23 -0600
Subject:        Richard III and Soames Forsythe

Al Magary wrote,

 >Soames Forsyte,...although often detestable, was in the first series in
 >2002 a
 >fascinating character in the style of some Shakespeare protagonists like
 >Richard III:  What *will* he do, what fresh outrage will he commit next?

An interesting association - although Richard never seems to suffer
Soame's struggle between his better and worse motives.  Especially as
Olivier plays him, Richard is having great fun; Soames seems always
miserable in his determination to assert his "Forsythe-ness".  In the
Masterpiece Theater's interpretation, Soames has an affection and
concern for his sister, a respect for his mother and a genuine love for
his father - and Irene is much more to him than a "property."  He seems
to fight off his instinct to love, thinking it a weakness, or as an obex
to a success required of him by the family tradition. (At least, that is
how he is being portrayed in the Masterpiece presentation; the novels
themselves seem  less kind to this character, more one-dimensional,  and
less appreciative of the TV-Soames' suffering. )

          L. Swilley

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