What's it about?
Oscar Wilde: The Most Interesting Man in the World.
What'd I experience?
This commercial is literally what I thought of when being introduced to Oscar Wilde. It’s still hard for me to imagine someone hating this guy, which people did but I wouldn’t consider his being into men as a valid reason for hating him, what I could see fueling people's dislike would be envy.
As soon as Oscar comes in, it’s clear he’s almost abnormally modern for his time. It has nothing to do with what he wore or the way he spoke, it was more about being the complete opposite of what people would assume him to be. He didn’t ever seem to care about what anyone thought about his lifestyle (liking men) - Oscar gave zero sh*ts. He never once conforms or makes people change for his benefit, he just accepts and loves, which unfortunately in the end was his ultimate downfall.
It’s hours before Oscar’s arrest and all he seems to be worried about is getting lunch. A man with priorities. It’s one of many qualities I found endearing about him, I was completely jealous of how chilled out he was knowing an arrest was hours away. I consider myself a pretty relaxed person, but if I was being arrested for loving the ‘wrong person’ I would have been flipping out. Oscar was eerily calm, nothing about being accused of being involved with a young man was phasing him, it’s like he was prepared for all the judgment and took it all in with open arms.
Going back to the part where I said he was modern for his time. It’s obvious. Since the late 1800’s aren’t notorious for having free spirits like Oscar, compared to a lot of people he seemed tremendously out of place. He was a divorced man who in the eyes of society had exchanged his happy family for casual flings with younger men, and what they hated the most was the fact that Oscar seemingly didn’t give a sh*t about their opinion. Not to say that he didn’t love his children and even the woman who gave him those children, because Oscar never once expresses anything less than gratitude for having the chance to have a family. It's just that loving was as easy as breathing for Oscar and when it came to having a reason to breath, it had Bosie written all over it.
Bosie is a self-righteous-egotistical-asshole who I wanted to punch in the face but couldn’t bring myself to because even though his love for Oscar may have been short lived, it was undeniably genuine. Where Oscar was contained and mellow, Bosie was boisterous and intense. He was never silent about loving Oscar and I found the love he had for him was genuine, because while Oscar had accepted the consequences of loving Bosie, Bosie was a more accurate depiction of what I’d picture my reaction when being told who to love. He wanted Oscar to fight for their love to show that he wasn’t ashamed of being with him, and I think it’s probably one of the reasons Boise stopped being in love with Oscar. Bosie being significantly younger than Oscar and made their whole relationship run hot and cold. One minute it was nearly impossible to tear them apart and then the next minute Bosie couldn’t bare to look at Oscar.
Then there was Robert, Oscar’s assistant and ex-lover, here was yet another person who couldn’t help but fall in love with Mr.Wilde. I’m telling you it’s hard hate the dude, he’s just too amazing. There was a clear sense that Robert was still very much in love with Oscar and, knowing him so well, he knew he needed a voice of reason when it came to Bosie. I can’t say I ever felt that Robert wanted to separate Oscar and Bosie. I think he genuinely believed that things between the two would end in Oscar losing everything. In the end Robert was right, having been the first man Oscar was with, he decides to stay by Oscar’s side. It is hours before the arrest (Bosie having left at this point) and Robert is clutching his hand knowing well it was probably the last time he’d see him. I imagine it being hard to see someone you love just give into punishment that isn’t deserved. It was probably even worse to see Oscar love another man so much that he is willing to be put in jail.
It was a shock to see that after having left Oscar behind to get jailed, it was Bosie who ended up taking care of Oscar. The way this story was told felt a lot like a cause and effect type thing. The first act was about meeting Oscar, Robert, and Bosie and seeing them in a high pressure situation. While the second act was about what their choices led them to and how love had ultimately changed them. Oscar ends up living in southern Italy, in what seemed like a warehouse with a single bed and a view of the ocean. The mood was a lot darker especially when the second act opens with Oscar looking at Bosie sleeping in the arms of another man. Ouch. Of course Oscar doesn’t go into a jealous rampage, just like before Oscar accepts that this is now his life.
Pretty much stuck in a chair because his legs no longer have the same strength from before, it’s like life is forcing Oscar to look at what he’d given up his freedom for. It’s such a dark time in his life, but Oscar remains the same. I obviously have no power over knowing what his internal feelings are, but what he lead me to believe is that he remains accepting of what life has prepared for him. It was really stressful to see someone I didn’t think deserved the life he had ended up with just take it all. It was as if he really believed he deserved what he got. For a moment I thought about the time period and how realizing you love someone who society has told you you can’t, must be difficult to justify even to yourself. Oscar had left his wife and children behind for the hope of falling in love again, so when things end in the way Robert told him they would I can see why Oscar would think he deserves to lose. To a fault, Oscar wants to please people, to make them happy, to live their life as they wish, and he is absolutely willing to put himself on the line for them.
The saddest thing is seeing a writer lose inspiration, and once that time comes for Oscar I noticed that my vision was getting blurred and then realized that I was tearing up. Which is fu*king weird. Inevitably it's those you love the most that are capable of hurting you the worst. When it came to love Oscar was all too willing to hand over his power to that person and unfortunately for him Bosie simply didn’t understand just how much power he had over Oscar. It’s really the worst way to end a love story, because I can’t imagine Oscar being in anything other than mind-numbing pain seeing that he no longer has his source of breath.
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