I absolutely loved this play. At first I was kind of confused, not because of the Shakespeare, but because I knew the plot line, and it doesn’t start out with the story of the taming of the shrew. And for those of you who are unfamiliar with the plot line, it basically goes like this: These two men, Lucentio and Hortensio are both in love with a girl named Bianca. However, Bianca cannot be courted (let alone married) until her older sister Katherina has been wed. Simple, right? Wrong. You see, Katherina is a bit of a shrew, which means that no one wants to marry her. Luckily for Lucentio and Hortensio, Petruchio is up to the challenge, and he has decided that he will tame the shrew. That is the basic plot line of the play, in case you have never heard of it. And, of course, it is packed with funny reparte, sexual comebacks, and lots of madness, as seems to be customary in Shakespeare’s comedies.
Aside from the general message that Katherina gives at the end, I really liked her as a shrew. She was funny and witty and she did not submit to Petruchio right away; she was very willful, and it was something that I liked very much, especially when compared to Shakespeare’s other famous heroine, Juliet. Katherina is not the lovesick young girl that Juliet is. Compared to Juliet, Katherina is a lot more like a girl from this century than Shakespeare’s time. She’s a lot more independent. Obviously not as much towards the end, but for the majority of the play she is very independent. Another character I liked was Patruchio, for his sheer genius alone. I won’t tell you his secret to taming the shrew, but I will tell you that it was absolutely brilliant, and Shakespeare definitely made him into an equal match to Kate (Katherina is known as Kate throughout the play, and, in fact, there is even a play based off of this one (either that or it’s the same play with a different name, I’m unsure which it is) called Kiss Me Kate).
What I liked most, though, was that Shakespeare basically invented the idea for Inception in this play. This play was literally a play inside a play, since the entire story of The Taming of the Shrew was a play put on for one of the characters in this play that Shakespeare wrote. (That is the super confusing intro; it has absolutely nothing to do with the story of Patruchio and Kate, but instead with a drunkard who is made to believe that he is the lord, and this play was put on for him). I thought that was pretty cool, and I couldn’t help but marvel at it.
All in all, this play was absolutely amazing. If you don’t like reading Shakespeare, (because you don’t understand it, or because you simply don’t like it), then I recommend seeing the play in the theatre. It’s hilarious, and witty, and definitely worth it.