Comparison between Hamlet and Down the River
Comparison between Hamlet and Down the River

Comparison between Hamlet and Down the River

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  • Pages: 3 (1125 words)
  • Published: October 10, 2017
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“The man who seeks revenge digs two graves. ”(Ken Kesey) Hamlet and “Down the River” demonstrates the aftermath of murder and displays the different versions of revenge. Throughout both stories two characters were murdered without just cause, furthermore; the death is seemingly innocent to the general public. Both stories demonstrate the need for revenge; in Hamlet, the main character plays out a methodical, syncytial plan for vengeance.

On the contrary, in “Down the River”, the brother makes a quick decision to murder the man at fault. Lastly, both characters deal with the aftermath of murder in a similar manner.Hamlet shows that he feels no remorse for murdering the king, and even belittles him as he is dying. Comparably, the brother also feels no remorse and even begins to plot his next murder for the other person involved.

Overall both characters demonstrate an ability to persist with their plans, and act accordingly. Both story lines possess the same act of betrayal to a family member, without a just cause. In Hamlet, Claudius murders his brother, the King, in order to gain his rank. The king’s death calls for no alarm, because the people of Denmark suspect no foul play.This allows for Claudius to become king without dealing with the harsh repercussions, until, Hamlet discovers the horrible truth.

“…Now, Hamlet, hear:/ ‘Tis given out that, sleeping in my orchard,/ A serpent stung me; so the whole ear of Denmark/ Is by a forged process of my death / Rankly abused: bu

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t know, thou noble youth, /The serpent that did sting thy father’s life/ Now wears his crown. ” (I,v, 34-40) At this point in the play the audience learns of the crime committed by Claudius to gain the crown. However, the general public in the play does not know of the foul behaviour that has occurred in the background.The story line of “Down the River” is similar to the plot of Hamlet in which Walter was murdered without reason, and his death remained a mystery to the people of the town.

However, his brother knew the truth of his death “…so they decided that he’d drowned, but I knew better…” (Down the River) The brother knows that his brother did not drown and was murdered by Watson because “… I thought I heard a shot, back down the river…” (Down the River) Through this shot that the brother heard, he knows that Walter was in fact murdered by Watson and wants to revenge the killer.Overall, both story lines possess the same act of forbidden murder and result in both deaths to be believed that they are accidents. The main characters deal with the struggle of revenge in two very different ways. One plan of action is thought out and methodical whereas the other is rash and quick. However, both end with the same result.

In Hamlet, once he hears of how his father truly died, Hamlet begins to form a plan in order to kill the new king and regain his father’s delegacy.Throughout the entire play Hamlet struggles with planning out his next move and his is constantly thinking of how h

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will prove that Claudius killed his father. Hamlet decides to put on a performance and from there he will judge Claudius’s reaction to the taboo events in the play. “For I mine eyes will rivet to his face, /And after we will both our judgments join /In censure of his seeming. ” (III, ii, 85-87) These lines mean that Hamlet will observe Claudius and dependent on his reaction to the modified play will alter his decision to murder him or not.

However, Hamlet is not a man of action, and its takes him a long time to decide how to handle the situation. “To be, or not to be: that is the question. ” (III, I, 56) This famous line from Hamlet is where the audience see’s Hamlets uncertainty in himself; in which he should murder the king or not. In contrast to this two faced behaviour is the brother in “Down the River”. Once the murder of his brother occurs and no proper consequences are allotted to Watson, the brother takes matter into his own hands. The plan he has is not well thought out, and he barely takes a moment to decide on it.

I hid in the woods, until I saw him walk out back; I put a bullet in his head, and dropped him in his tracks. ” (Down the River) This part in the song shows how decisive the brother is. Almost immediately after Walters’s death he has killed Watson to account for his brother’s murder. The main difference between these two characters is how they execute their plans. Hamlets methodically thinks out every step, whereas the brother immediately does what he intended too.

How both characters deal with the aftermath of killing their emeries is quite similar.Hamlet kills Claudius with rage, yet feels no pity for what he has done. “Here, thou incestuous, murderous, damned Dane” (V,ii, 325) This is what Hamlet says to Claudius after stabbing him, allowing no relief and only giving him a poisoned drink in order to ensure his slow death. Hamlet wants to ensure that his dead Father has been avenged properly and does so by showing no mercy for Claudius. Similarly, the brother in “Down the River” feels the same lack of emotion after killing Watson. “I chained him to an anvil, and then I let him go, and five years later, I ain’t told a soul.

(Down the River) In these lines the brother shows how he does not regret his decision and allows it to remain a secret, without cracking under the pressure.Afterwards, the bother states “I’ve been thinking Wilsons cousin, better find a place to hind” (Down the River) this line is insinuating that the brother has a new plan to kill Wilson’s cousin as well because he was a part of Walters murder. Both characters demonstrate that they executed there plans effectively, and therefore have no regret in doing so. In conclusion, Hamlet and the Brother share common grounds while dealing with murder.Both characters have a family member who has been murdered on no proper grounds, and with foul play behind them.

However, there plot for

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