Romeo and Juliet Act 2 Song Analysis

Romeo and Juliet Act 2 Song Analysis

Act 2 of Romeo and Juliet is the most cheerful part of the play. This Act includes the famous balcony scene where Romeo and Juliet confess their love for each other and decide to get married. Romeo then arranges plans with Friar Lawrence and the nurse tells Juliet to meet him at the chapel. This act also includes the famous lines that make Romeo and Juliet still well known to this day

“But soft, what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the East, and Juliet is the sun.
Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief
That thou, her maid, art far more fair than she.
Be not her maid since she is envious.
Her vestal livery is but sick and green,
And none but fools do wear it. Cast it off.
It is my lady. O, it is my love!
O, that she knew she were!”
(2.2.2-11)

Now I want to compare two modern day songs “Love Story” by Taylor Swift and “Closer” by Ne-Yo. I want to see which one better represents Act 2 of Romeo and Juliet.

 

Love Story

To start, “Love Story”, by Taylor Swift was clearly inspired by Romeo and Juliet and includes a lot of elements of the play in that song. The song lyrics reference Romeo and Juliet and so does the imagery display. The imaginary flashback takes place in 14th century Verona with the costumes and the setting resembling Romeo and Juliet in a high degree. Also the song is sung in Juliet’s perspective mostly then changing to Romeo’s perspective in some parts of the song.

The lyrics have a great connection to Romeo and Juliet.

“See the lights, see the party, the ball gowns
See you make your way through the crowd
And say hello little did I know
That you were Romeo, you were throwing pebbles
And my daddy said, “Stay away from Juliet”
And I was crying on the staircase
Begging you, please, don’t go”

The similarities is that it resembles the Capulet party and both Romeo and Juliet’s parents are against them being together. The key differences between the lyrics and the play are in the lyrics where Juliet’s father tells Romeo to “Stay away from Juliet,” Capulet never told Romeo in the play to stay away from Juliet. Also she never goes to cry in a staircase.

“So I sneak out to the garden to see you
We keep quiet ’cause we’re dead if they knew”

The similarity to the play is that during the balcony scene Juliet feared for Romeo’s life because if they were caught Capulet would probably have Romeo killed. The difference is they never snuck into a garden together, Romeo came by himself and startled Juliet

.“Marry me, Juliet, you’ll never have to be alone
I love you and that’s all I really know
I talked to your dad, go pick out a white dress
It’s a love story, baby just say yes”

These lyrics resembled the play very well because Romeo and Juliet shared their love for each other during the balcony scene. They decided to get married so the play Romeo and Juliet is at heart a love story.

“Love Story” by Taylor Swift is the best representation of Act 2 of Romeo and Juliet. Now lets move on to the next song “Closer” by Ne-Yo and see how the song relates to Romeo and Juliet written by William Shakespeare.

 

Closer

“Closer” by Ne-Yo isn’t something to get excited about. The song has almost no connection to Romeo and Juliet and the lyrics are very repetitive.

“I just can’t stop
I just can’t stop
I just can’t stop
I just can’t stop
And I just can’t break myself no way
But I don’t want to escape
I just can’t stop
I just can’t stop
I just can’t stop
I just can’t stop
I just can’t stop

I can feel her on my skin
I can taste her on my tongue
She’s the sweetest taste of sin
The more I get the more I want
She wants to own me
Come closer
She says “come closer”

The only thing relevant to these lyrics are that this is a connection to the feelings Romeo has to Juliet like how he can’t stop being with her. Then the rest of lyrics sound sexual rather than them being romantic.

“She’s the sweetest taste of sin”

In the play Romeo and Juliet’s relationship is considered a sin by their families but Ne-Yo probably put that in a different context.

 

Verdict
In summary “’Love Story” by Taylor Swift better represents Romeo and Juliet by using moments from the play, their lyrics, and their imagery display. They also incorporate the balcony scene and the ideas of running away and getting married. “Closer” by Ne-Yo has lyrics that show Romeo’s strong desire for Juliet but in the end its basically a sexual song.

 

References

Lyricsfreak.com,. ‘Love Story Lyrics – Taylor Swift’. N.p., 2015. Web. 8 May 2015.

http://www.lyricsfreak.com/t/taylor+swift/love+story_20757542.html

Metrolyrics.com,. ‘Ne-Yo – Closer Lyrics | Metrolyrics’. N.p., 2015. Web. 8 May 2015.

http://www.metrolyrics.com/closer-lyrics-neyo.html

 

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