1. Thanks for posting that – Darrin Bell had spelled two words incorrectly and I’d sent him an email . . . then forgot about it. I see he corrected both words. Just call me Ms Pedantic, but still . . .

  2. Unless he’s a known regular character, both the name in the first panel and the archaic form of “doth” seem to imply a reference either to “Hamlet” or to Tom Stoppard’s “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead“, but I’ve never seen (nor read) the latter, and connot judge whether the dialog in the comic might be a parody of it.

  3. They are regular characters, and this dialog is pretty much in line with their usual. Squabbling in very high-toned style…The whole setting is probably a reference to one or both of the plays (or people’s reactions to them).

  4. There’s an organization at the University of Chicago called Court Theatre, which for the last, I don’t know, 20 or 30 years, has its own excellent building on campus and is pretty much a professional theater company. But before that, it was more of a student organization, with mostly student and community casts and crew, led by a faculty member with professional acting and producing/directing experience, the great Nick Rudall. And the performances in that era were outdoors (weather permitting) in the courtyard of one of the campus quadrangles — which is why it had the name Court Theatre.

    ANYWAY, one season back in that era they did both of those plays, the Shakespeare and the Stoppard, with “consistent casting”, that is, any given role that occurs in both plays would be performed by the same actor in both. For the final night (or maybe the last two nights?), they performed the two plays together with the scenes interleaved, in something like the chronological order of the events being enacted.

    It was at least very clever! I don’t think it enhanced Hamlet really, but at least didn’t diminish it. And I thought it definitely did illuminate the Stoppard, supplying all the context his text had only alluded to, and very pointedly bringing out the way his central characters knew they were just a side-story to the central drama.

    (A cute detail which I have not checked might be written in the Stoppard script, or might be a performance tradition for either play, or might have been invented by the costumer for this particular production, as I like to think — Rosencrantz wore red/pink tights, and Guildenstern gold/yellow. Then on lines like “No, I’m Rosencrantz and he’s Guildenstern!” the actors would cock out a hip and point or touch his appropriately colored stern, or umm krantz.)

  5. NO WONDER he bothered to correct it – imagine how many other readers did this. There are a lot of pedants out there, and we want to be acknowledged!

  6. @ Carl & Andréa – I don’t want to embarrass the author, but the two of you are making me very curious to know which were the two words he misspelled…

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