The internet loves to remind you of two things: that Frankenstein was the name of the doctor, not the monster, and that Romeo and Juliet is absolutely, positively, NOT romantic. At all.
Well, here is my unpopular opinion~ yes, it is romantic, and you’re allowed to think that it is romantic! 💕 Sure, the play is a tragedy, but there are elements of the story that speak to our soul, that speak to our need for romance and lust.
~ Love at First Sight ~
Romeo and Juliet look at each other and BAM! Sparks fly. They know nothing of each other (not even that they are rivals) and they are instantly in love.
This speaks to our romanticized view of soul mates.
That Romeo and Juliet instantly fall in love plays on the fantasy of “the one.” When you find them, you just know, and it is meant to be. Lots of romantic fiction plays on this idea, and we love it.
They were kids. They were in lust or in infatuation. As adults, we know that. To quote the wonderful Elsa, “You can’t marry a man you just met.”
We know that real love takes getting to know each other, work, and effort. Lots of effort.
But where would that leave us? Without passion. And passion is key to this story.
~ Passion ~
Sugar, spice, and lots of passion makes for a great romance. It is the head-over-heels passion of these young lovers that makes us sigh. They are simply crazy about each other, and super emotional about it!
It is Romeo and Juliet’s passion that drives the conflict, tension, and plot.
And it is that wild, over-the-top teenage passion that drives both families crazy. Their obsession is what makes them so impossible to keep apart. We sigh when we think of such longing, such passion.
That level of passion was unhealthy and a bit nutty 😂 Not to mention, unrealistic.
In real life, passion is hard to maintain.
But without that passion for each other, we would have had a very boring story. Probably not even a tragedy at all! Booo…
~ The Language ~
Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet has some of the loveliest dialogue I have ever read. (Not to mention how sweet it sounds coming from a young Leonardo DiCaprio! 😉 )
Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight!
For I ne’er saw true beauty till this night.
From the clever back-and-forth in the beginning between Sampson and Gregory, to Prince’s last breath-taking statement, Romeo and Juliet is full of wonderfully written, romantic language.
My love has given me a birthday card each year since I met him. He lets the card “do the talking” and always just signs his name at the bottom 😂
We don’t speak like this in real life. Romance fiction is filled with flowery language because we often lack that type of poetry in our day-to-day talk.
The dialogue in Romeo and Juliet is beautiful (which is why YOLO Juliet in texting format breaks my heart!! 😭). It’s no wonder people often think Romeo and Juliet is romantic– the dialogue sure is! 💕
~ I Would Die For You, I Would Die For You… ~
For the 90’s kids, Shirley Manson crooning those words just melted us. Romance turned up to 11! Cue the goosebumps 😘
This speaks to our longing for a love so deep we would die without it.
In fiction, death is the ultimate heroic sacrifice. In romance, people willing to die for each other show the reader just how true their love is, just how strong, just how powerful… It is breath-taking.
Yeah, you’re totally not going to die if your crush doesn’t date you, if your boyfriend leaves you, or if you wife divorces you.
You’re not going to die if a romance doesn’t pan out.
Chances are, you’ll dust yourself off and go on with life. It might suck for a while, but you’ll get over it. And that’s the healthy thing to do!
But who says fiction has to be healthy?
Romeo and Juliet is not meant to show us how to love anymore than Fahrenheit 451 is meant to show us how to deal with unsavory books. It is simply a work of fiction.
In fiction, crazy romance, wild rides, and dead bodies are all exciting…
not so much in real life 🤔
And that’s fine! 😆
But just because something isn’t ideal for real life it doesn’t mean that it won’t work for fiction… or that it can’t inspire certain feelings from the safety of a fictional book.
So go ahead, swoon over the romance in Romeo and Juliet. Sigh for the passion, lust, and craziness that works so well in fiction.
We can enjoy these powerful emotions from the safety of a fictional story…
…without using it as an example for real life.
I myself think Romeo and Juliet is incredibly romantic in its own teenaged messed up way! What about you?
🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜