The Businessmen Scene

[Lane watches Henry in Act 3, interpreted as businessmen with cell phones]
HENRY: I am hurt. A plague on both your houses! Oh, I am sped. What, is he gone and hath nothing?

Henry’s speech is from Act 3, Scene 1 of Romeo and Juliet. He is playing Mercutio, a close friend of Romeo, and a relative of Count Paris, who Juliet is betrothed to. It is he who persuades Romeo to attend the Capulet’s party where he meets Juliet and falls in love with her.

Something of a wild party animal, Mercutio is lively and witty, making him a memorable scene stealer in the play. Romeo refuses to duel with Juliet’s cousin Tybalt, as he now sees Tybalt as one of his kin, through his secret marriage to Juliet.

Mercutio is incensed at the dishonourable way Romeo has refused to fight, and duels Tybalt himself, getting stabbed to death for his troubles. As he dies, he furiously denounces both the Montagues and the Capulets, crying, “A plague on both your houses!”.

A grief-stricken Romeo kills Tybalt to avenge his dearest friend, leading to him being banished from the city, and setting the tragic portion of the play in motion.

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