Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Hobson’s Choice Essay

Again in this Act we see Willie’s potential when Maggie goes round to Hobson’s to collect some old broken chairs she tells Vicky and Alice, â€Å"Wills handy with his fingers. Hell put in this afternoon mending them. † This shows that Willie has the ability do other things apart from just making boots, so this shows he is not just a simple boot maker that we think he is. He has the capability to use his hands to mend near enough anything. One of the main points of this act is the fact that Willie now accepts the marriage freely and he is not just marrying Maggie because he is scared of her, like he was at first. We know this as he says, â€Å"Yes Maggie, I’m resigned! You’re growing on me lass, and I’ll toe the line with you! † This is the second time in the play we see Willie make a decision for himself, but this decision is important as the rest of his life depends on this decision. This proves that Willie is a slightly stronger character but the marriage is still just a business proposition. Despite the fact that Willie is now able to make decisions for himself he is still a rather humble character as Vicky asks Willie if he has got the rings and Maggie replies, â€Å"I have. Do you think I trust him to remember? † This shows us Maggie still takes charge of everything and does not trust Willie to do anything. Act Three is set later the same day after the couple have got married and everybody is at Maggie and Willie’s for the after wedding party, apart from Hobson. Willie decided to make a speech this shows how much his reading has improved, although he is still in Maggie’s shadow as when Willie is making the speech Maggie has to correct him, â€Å"generous† she says when he forgets the word he is looking for. Also when he makes the speech Maggie’s family notices his development, as when Albert wants to make a speech Alice says, â€Å"But you’ll not speak as well as he did. † This just shows that Willie must have progressed if Alice has noticed, as they do not think that he is good enough to be in their family. After the speech Hobson comes round to their home to ask for Maggie’s advice, and with some help from Maggie, Willie is able to take control of the situation with Hobson. Willie puts Hobson in his place when he speaks the truth and tells him what he really thinks of him as he says, â€Å"I’m sorry if my well meant words don’t suit your taste, but I thought you came here for advice† But despite this Hobson still does not see why Maggie has chosen Willie for a husband, as he cannot see that Willie has changed and has much more strength in his character. After Willie offends Hobson, Hobson then goes on to offend Willie by saying, â€Å"I didn’t come to you, you jumped up cocka-hooping.. † Again we see Willie as a weak character when Maggie has to step in and intervene, to defend her husband, â€Å"That’ull do father. My husbands trying to help you. † Again we see that he is still in Maggie’s shadow as she asks him to wash up, â€Å"Willie, we’ll need this table, when they’re gone. You’d better be clearing the pots away† This shows he still does not stand up to Maggie all the time and he is still scared of her. This scene is also full of humour when Willie shows one of his remaining weaknesses the fact that he is still a virgin and he does not want to go to bed with Maggie so he does not want their guests to go home and even Freddie notices this and says, â€Å"He’s afraid to be alone with her,† This is important because in the end Maggie drags him to bed and in Victorian society woman were not supposed to enjoy a sexual relationship but still the roles in this absurd relationship are reversed, which is extremely humorous. However, this is the last time we see Willie as a ridiculous figure. Act Four is set a year later so in this act the audience do expect a dramatic change in Willie, and that is what they get. Before Willie even enters the act we see that he has built up a successful business, a business that is ruining Hobson’s. We know this as Tubby says to Hobson, â€Å"In Chapel Street they say its Willie Mossop† This just shows that Willie has developed in leaps and bounds since the last time we saw him. In this act we find out that Hobson is a chronic alcoholic and that he is feeling melancholic and suicidal. The doctor tells Hobson he must refrain from drinking and asks Maggie to come back home and look after him. Maggie comes back but she says that she will have to have Willie’s permission. Hobson finds this hilarious because he does not know how much Willie has changed, so Maggie simply replies, â€Å"maybe Willie has changed since the last time you saw him† Willie arrives at Hobson’s and he goes straight to look over the stock. Alice and Vicky question what he is doing and Willie replies, â€Å"If I’m to come into a thing I like to know what I’m coming into† This shows that Willie has become a changed man as he is definitely more confident and stronger than he was in the previous three acts, we know this because Alice’s reaction is, â€Å"That’s never Willie Mossop† Later in the Act Willie says to Maggie about moving back to Hobson’s, â€Å"If we come here we come on my terms† This shows that Willie is now the dominant one of the couple and that he is not afraid of Maggie, this is a complete role reversal as before it was Maggie who told Willie what to do. To make sure that Maggie comes home to look after Hobson he decides to set terms by offering to pay Willie’s old wages and allowing Maggie to live in his house rent-free. Willie is not fooled and simply says, â€Å"Come home Maggie,† because why would he want to get paid his old wages when he has a successful business in Oldfield Road? Later Willie sets down his own terms to Hobson. His terms were that they would only move back if Willie owns half of Hobson’s shop and Hobson is a silent partner. He even says he cannot refuse because Willie owns a business that is starving Hobson’s to death, as Willie says, â€Å"Me that’s the owner of a business that’s starving yours to death† Willie even stands up to Maggie because Willie wants the sign above the shop door to read, ‘Mossop and Hobson’ but Maggie disagrees. So Willie says, â€Å"Its Mossop and Hobson or its Oldfield Road for us, Maggie! † Eventually Maggie gives in, just proving that now she is the weaker character and Willie is the stronger, more dominant one, and in Victorian England it was thought that that was how it should be.

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