Review: King Henry VI, Part 3

King Henry VI, Part 3
King Henry VI, Part 3 by William Shakespeare
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was starting to get bored with the Henrys, but this one revived me a bit. There were some especially rousing speeches, and I didn’t completely hate every character.

I feel like every situation and scene was gone through twice. Twice Edward is on the throne and Henry is forced to compromise or flee. Twice Henry is on the throne and Edward is fleeing. Twice they summon all their allies to send soldiers. Twice somebody sends to France for soldiers. Twice Henry is thrown into prison in the Tower, then Edward is thrown into prison as well with the Archbishop. Two big battles where half of everyone is killed. Two different scenes where young boys are killed. So much back and forth. Ugh. I feel like I read the same play twice.

King Henry VI is still getting on my nerves, just like in the last two plays. He’s such a good guy with a compassionate heart, but no wisdom, no cunning. He’s not circumspect enough to see that everyone is plotting against him and betraying him right and left. He lets himself be bullied by his wife; he’s such a doormat. They won’t let him speak at parley; they won’t let him lead the battles. Poor Henry, he’s such a lovable idiot.
I felt truly sorry for him in this play. At the end, (view spoiler)

Queen Margaret is as acidic and mean as ever. What a shrew! She just shrieks at everybody, but she does have some amazing lines.

Warwick is a complicated guy. I was actually surprised when (view spoiler) Up until then, I thought he was just a horrible blood-thirsty soldier, but he really cared about his honor more than anything. He had a weird sense of honor that didn’t quite align with actual righteousness, but still, I can admire his attitude… sometimes.

All the characters are such liars. They’re always switching sides and breaking oaths of peace. Bunch of selfish ingrates! haha! That’s royalty for you, I guess.

So now I only have one more Henry left to read about. Richard III and then Henry VIII, and I’ll be done with all the historical plays, I think. Yay!

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