Puck's Mishaps

Analyzing Robin Goodfellow from "A Midsummer Night's Dream"

There is magic in the world

Throughout the play, "A Midsummer Night's Dream", Robin (A.K.A. Puck) demonstrates that there is magic in the world. Robin is a type of fairy who has the ability to change forms and cause huge amounts of trouble. For example, in Act III of the play, Puck magically gives Bottom a donkey's head! It is clearly seen in Act II of the play that there is magic in the world when Oberon, King of fairies, sends Puck to retrieve a magical flower called "Love-in-idleness". Robin uses the drops the flower's magical juices into people's eyes and cause them to love the first person they see. In the play, Oberon tells Robin, " Fetch me that flower. The herb I showed thee once. The juice of it on sleeping eyelids laid will make a man or woman madly dote upon the next live creature it sees" (II. i. 26-29). This quote proves that there is magic in the world because it shows how its magic has the ability to make people magically fall in love. Puck finding and using this flower, makes it clear that there is magic in the world. Through this, I learned that Puck is an obedient fairy.

People's actions can influence other people's lives

In the play, there were a few incidents that Puck was involved in that prove that people's actions can influence other people's lives. In the play, Puck made a few mistakes with the magical flower. He somehow managed, to drop the magical juice from the flower in the wrong person's eyes! King Oberon expected him to drop the juice in Demetrius' eyes so that he would be in love with Helena, but Puck accidentally dropped the juice in Lysander's eyes instead! Since Helena was the first person that Lysander saw when he awoke, he instantly fell in love with her and pretty much kicked his 'true' love Hermia to the curb. Another incident was when Puck dropped the juice into Demetrius' eyes. Normally, Demetrius hated Helena but because Puck dropped the magic juice into his eyes, he instantly fell in love with Helena when he woke up also! Puck's big mistakes and misunderstanding flipped the lovers' lives upside down. Lysander and Demetrius are now fighting over Helena instead of Hermia and are enemies all because of one mistake! In Act II of the play, while Robin is squeezing the juice into Lysander's eyes he says, " Churl, upon thy eyes I throw all the power this charm doth owe. When thou wakest let love forbid sleep his seat on thy eyelid. So awake when I am gone" (II. ii. 38-42). This quote shows how Puck put the juice of the flower into the wrong person's eyes. Due to this mistake, Lysander is eventually going to wake up and fall in love with someone else other than Helena. This changes their lives. In this moment, it is clear that people's actions can influence other people's lives. Through this, I learned that Robin makes mistakes and is very mischievous.
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Chaos and confusion are a necessary part of life

Regardless of how bad a situation may be, Puck is always having his fun one way or another. He loves to be mischievous and cause lots of trouble. He loves to mess with people and have fun. For example, he made the lovers switch up one each other. The lovers started hating each other, arguing, and ready to battle because of his actions. Even though this is a problem, Puck sits back and does nothing because he is amused by the chaos! He is a big trouble maker! He does bad things to people but he loves it. Puck loves the fact that he gives people hard times and is very content with who he is. In Act II one of the fairies say, " Either I mistake your shape and making quite, or else you are that shrewd and knavish sprite called Robin Goodfellow. Are not you he that frights the maidens of the villager, skim milk, and sometimes labor the quern and bootless make the breathless housewife churn, and sometime make the drink bear no barm, mislead night-wanderers, laughing at their harm? Those that "Hobglobin" call you "Sweet Puck," you do their work, and they shall have good luck. Are you not he" (II. ii. 5-15)? This quote is showing all of the mischievous things that Puck does. He does all these things to people but he believes that it is all necessary. Although he causes trouble and messes with people, his encounters bring people good luck. This quote shows how chaos and confusion are necessary because after these things happen people are brought good luck! Puck clearly demonstrates that chaos and confusion are a necessary part of life for people because going through the struggles bring them something good in return. Through this I learned that Puck is content, mischievous and a bit of a trouble maker!

Connecting to the character

While Puck may be a fictional character, I find him extremely relatable. He is actually very much like me considering the way he acts and how he feels about himself. Puck's desire to be amused and have fun is something that I try to do at most times myself! I am also, the mischievous and jokester type of guy just like Puck! His mischievous mishaps and his personality resembles something that is somewhat close to mine!

Although Puck possesses many fine qualities, I find some of his ways childish. I'm not going to laugh or be amused at other people's problems like Puck. Puck changes shapes and uses that ability to play trick on people and animals which is not very admirable. I know many people who do things like Puck, and they are not very adored by their actions. I wouldn't be able to play tricks on people like Puck does.

A Midsummer Night's Dream - 1935 "Puck, Oberon's Servant"