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    Contextualising The Play Essay

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    Cultural  The Crazy Gang was a collection of zany comedians: three double acts. The most known were Bud Flanagan and Chesney Allen. Flanagan in particular being adored by the British public. The acts were a comedy phenomenon, packing theatres and appearing in a number of films.  Their antics combined verbal gymnastics with farce and elaborate physical comedy, and it all seemed totally unstructured – lunatic stream-of-consciousness complemented by custard pies.  Flanagan and Alan are quite alike with Ben and Gus, looking at them from a comedic angle.

    As one character is always played as the smarter character or a character with more authority.  Rock and Pop music was a huge influence on the 1950s. Not only the music, but also the image that came with it. In my opinion, Ben would have slicked back hair, influenced by Elvis Presley, and Gus, quite untidy hair. Historical, political and social  At the time the play was written and the time I would chose to set it, the Cold War was underway between communist Russia and capitalist America. Both countries had the capabilities to fire terrible weapons of mass destructions such as Atom bombs.

    It was a dangerous environment, and because Britain was in between the two countries, it was stuck in the middle.  Gus and Ben are hiding in the basement. They could be involved in the Cold War. The basement could be seen as a bunker, in fear of the war. George Orwell’s 1984 was a story about Winston Smith who endures a squalid existence in totalitarian Oceania under the constant surveillance of Big Brother. But his life takes a horrifying turn when he begins a forbidden love affair and commits the crime of independent thought.  Ben and Gus could be under surveillance of the people above the basement just like in Orwell’s novel.

    These two are strongly linked with each other because both are under surveillance. The Play in the context of the modern world  A twenty first century audience would find the play appealing and interesting because our society is much concerned with hiding in the modern world. For example, there are still a lot of organized gangs today. For example, Mafia, Yakuza and Triads etc.  Ben and Gus could have been seen as hiding from terrorists or something else outside that would cause harm to them. Perhaps they are terrorists themselves or members or members of the security services, hiding from something else.

    A recent, major terrorist act that occurred was when two planes flew into the World Trade Centre’s Twin Towers in New York, killing over 5,000 people. Ben and Gus could be part of the evil that is outside as embodied in such terrorist attacks.  There are still plenty of hit men or bounty hunters around today. Another reason for the audience being appealed to this play is that jobs including assassinations cause interest because there are many modern television programs and movies, which include such actions, for example, The Sopranos and the James Bond series.

    This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

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