Theater: Double Will from England

King Lear. The fatal flaw that mars Paul Scofield's Lear is detachment. In the Royal Shakespeare Company's version of the play now in repertory at Lincoln Center's New York State Theater, Scofield seems to see through Lear's nature and coolly contemplate Lear's fate, instead of suffering it. But Lear, like Oedipus, cannot see himself, or there would be no tragedy. He threatens to do such things as will be "the terrors of the earth," but his cruel lot is to have those things done to him. He is stretched on the rack of the world like a pagan Job without hope...

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