Global Literatures in English

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Angels in America (Perestroika)

March 21st, 2012 · 17 Comments
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Comment here for Perestroika.  Some people already started doing this for last time, but let me ask it as a formal prompt this time: since Angels in America is in many ways structured via different couplings of characters, what pair of characters do you think have the most interesting relationship?

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17 responses so far ↓

  • 1    gvelella // Mar 21, 2012 at 2:31 am

    Since I’ve already said Harper and Joe, I’m going to go with Belize and Roy this time. These two are totally different characters, but in a way, compliment each other at the same time. Belize seems to hate Roy, and visa versa, but Belize seems to be a person he could talk to, considering he is infected with AIDS and Belize is a out and about gay.
    Another interesting couple are Prior and Louis. Louis comes off as this very Jewish, white man, who hides his feelings and what’s going on with Prior, and Prior is the out one, considering he too is infected with AIDS.

  • 2    cbergmann // Mar 21, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    Although I still think Louis and Prior had a very interesting relationship, I will pick a new couple to talk about this time. After reading Perestroika the relationship that really struck me as interesting was the one between Belize and Roy. Out of the many relationships that spun out of control in Perestroika, Belize and Roy’s scenes were truly unique. The most interesting scene between them in my opinion took place on pages 186-192. When Belize found out that Roy took his advice and was actually able to get his hands on the experimental medication, he was shocked. He realized how greedy Roy was and how Roy had no respect for kindness. It was not until Belize began to berate Roy that he allowed Belize to take a pill bottle. The scene ends with Roy saying how America has no room for the sick only the strong. I think that little paragraph is very interesting and holds a lot of meaning. Roy truly believes if one is weak, he might as well die.

  • 3    jsheets716 // Mar 22, 2012 at 3:57 am

    The pairing I found most interesting throughout both plays are Louis and Joe, mostly because I liked the twisted dynamic the two characters shared. Both are unsympathetic and sympathetic in many ways, and both have several things in common:

    1. They both left their lovers because they were unable to cope with what their loved ones were going through.; Louis left Prior and Joe left Harper.
    2. Said lovers were rather vulnerable, with Harper’s hallucinations and Prior struggling with AIDS.
    3. Both are unable to return to their lovers at first: Louis goes a month without seeing Prior and Joe stays with Louis for a month
    4. Both deal with rejection: Joe rejected Harper and Louis rejected Prior, but Louis also rejected Joe later on.
    5. Both their loved ones can’t forgive them for leaving: Harper leaves Joe (and takes his credit card, no less) while Prior is unable to forgive Louis.

    Both are extremely unsympathetic in their actions, but I felt sorry for both of them when they were rejected, especially at the end. I know Joe is generally looked upon as a character one is supposed to hate, but I probably sympathized with him most of all. I just liked the fact that they had so much in common, but they were very different characters despite their similarities. While Belize and Roy are an obvious choice for a good pairing, I like Louis and Joe regardless.

  • 4    marissae17 // Mar 22, 2012 at 11:39 am

    I think that Harper and Prior have the most interesting relationship. When I had first read the dream sequence I wasn’t really sure what was going on, but I had looked it up on YouTube and got more of an understanding on Prior’s significance in telling Harper that Joe was gay and Harper’s surprised but understanding reaction. At the end of the play, I feel that both Harper and Prior have come full circle in the play. I think that despite their obstacles throughout their play, they have both closed a chapter in their life.

  • 5    GordonWTam // Mar 22, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    I don’t know. Roy and Joe’s relationship was pretty interesting from the start. We can kind of see them becoming one another if they changed like.. one or two points in their personalities. But while pretty similar, they are vastly different. I think the LEAST interesting pairing was Hannah and Harper, as short as that was.

  • 6    khaff88 // Mar 22, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    Out of all the relationships throughout this play, I think Roy and Belize’s relationship is the most interesting. Belize despises Roy for numerous reasons and that is likewise for Roy toward Belize. Belize has no choice but to help Roy in the hospital because of his job, but he offers Roy advice out of pity of his disease. Roy never appreciates Belize and what he tries to do for him because he is so embarrassed of his situation and too proud at the same time. Roy’s disgusting attitude makes little progress in their relationship and Roy never changes his outlook on life even when he is right about to die. Roy’s personality just fuels Belize’s hatred for America but he is able to get the AZT pills from Roy for prior, the only benefit for Belize in this relationship.

  • 7    azaharopoulos // Mar 22, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    In Act 2 scene 2 Prior and the Angel seemed very comical. Also It was an unusual twist to a creation myth “Angelic orgasm makes protomatter, which fuels the Engine of Creation”. I also liked the relationship between Belize and Roy because of the tension they almost seemed like they were gonna succumb to punches but Belize decided to be helpful to this unfortunate fellow homosexual even though he shows colors of racism and arrogance.

  • 8    Jamie Rohr // Mar 22, 2012 at 6:37 pm

    I like Roy and Belize’s relationship because it is one of mutual disgust, while simultaneously, of mutual respect. Their dynamic is entertaining and there is a common ground that leaves both of them on the same page. They seem to understand each other, and a relationship that is stemmed from hate usually develops and encompasses other intense feelings as well.

  • 9    seanlevine // Mar 22, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    I especially enjoyed the rather strange relationship between Roy and Ethel Rosenberg. Granted, they aren’t on par with the major relationships featured in the plays, however it struck me nonetheless. Simply because on the one hand it’s fitting that’d she would essentially haunt him to his last breath, especially with the phantasmagorical aspects of this work being as prevalent as they are . But the relationship, despite their unfinished business, was casual/almost amicable on Ethel’s end. At least until Roy’s eventual disbarment wherein Ethel’s reserves of venom finally came to bear on Roy. However, even then there seemed to be some reconciliation between them at the bitter end; I even interpreted the scene wherein Roy is calling out for his mother and mistaking Ethel for her as perhaps a scene of attempted atonement for the evils he admitted to had perpetrated upon her and her husband, which is shockingly forthcoming and almost bizzare for a “heterosexual man who happens to f–k guys+rule the world…and has “liver cancer” etc etc. It almost humanized Roy Cohn, for an instant, but then reality came crashing back down around that supposition and I realized once and for all that it would’ve been he who belonged in the Electric Chair at Sing-Sing in a just world and not her.

  • 10    hamidah // Mar 22, 2012 at 6:55 pm

    I think that Prior and the Angel is an interesting couple because Angel is an Angel and Prior is a prophet. An Angel and a prophet should not have a connection like the way they did. They have a romantic, sexual connection and in real life that is absurd, weird, unthinkable and not possible at all.

  • 11    Erika // Mar 22, 2012 at 6:58 pm

    I definitely think the weirdest relationship s Prior and the angel. Considering that angels are messengers of God and that Prior being a homosexual isn’t an issue… strange…

  • 12    Zasha Lucas // Mar 22, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    The pair of characters that I found the most interesting were Joe and Louis. It kind of upset me a little that Louis would leave Prior which is really sick at the hospital. Joe left Harper while she was basically a druggy. At the end they wanted to return to their original partners but it was too late. I just believe they were both really messed up and they were selfish.

  • 13    hernandez // Mar 22, 2012 at 7:08 pm

    Forgiveness and change is what is seen at the end of the play. The most interesting character for me is Harper. She at first seemed to be so dependent of her husband but at the end she was able to free herself from him and go on her way to rebuild herself and her life.

  • 14    mhealy101 // Mar 22, 2012 at 7:35 pm

    Last blog I chose Joe and Harper as an appealing couplet, but this time around I find the angel and Priors relationship pretty interesting. The angel comes and declares Prior as a prohet. Although this scence is a little confusing at first once I was able to comprehend it I found it pretty interesting.

  • 15    nmulet // Mar 22, 2012 at 7:49 pm

    I like the relationship between Harper and Prior. I feel like they have a genuine friendship even though they aren’t really friends. They seem to know and understand each other better than any of the other characters. And they seem to be more understanding as well. When they’re together, they help each other out in some way. I think it would’ve been interesting to see what that relationship would’ve been like if they’d met before the dream. It probably would be the same, as they both seem to be experiencing similar struggles in life.

  • 16    costantinipatti // Mar 22, 2012 at 8:12 pm

    At first I believe that Joe and Harper had the most interesting/ strange relationship. Harper always stoned with pills, at home, refusing the outside world and Joe listening to all of her hallucinations of the current day. But then Louis and Prior’s relationship was more intriguing since it was profound, from the dialogues to how they managed to cope with each others insecurities. Furthermore, Harpers ending was great, as she was out to explore the world and herself. Harpers end was one of liberation.

  • 17    javeriasid // Mar 22, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    I find Belize and Roy to have the most interesting relationship, especially because their personalities are so different. Despite their hate for one another they seem to be comical together. And even though Roy is rude and obnoxious Belize still has a soft spot for him and continus to care for him.

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