Hamlet for the Shakespeare-Impaired

Act 4, Scene 5

Elsinore. A room in the Castle. Enter Horatio, Queen, and a Gentleman.

Queen: I refuse to speak to Ophelia.
Gentleman: But she really wants to talk to you. And she's very upset.
Queen: What does she want?
Gentleman: She keeps talking about her father, and all the evil in the world. She doesn't make too much sense, really. She tends to babble.
Horatio: You really should speak with her, Your Majesty. If she goes crazy, she might be dangerous just like Hamlet.
Queen: Oh, all right. Let her come in.
[Exit Gentleman.]
Queen: Things are going from bad to worse around here.
[Ophelia wanders in, distracted.]
Ophelia: Where is the beauteous Majesty of Denmark?
Queen: Here. How are you, Ophelia?
Ophelia: [Sings.]  La dee dah de dah! It's like raaaaaaaain on your wedding day! La dee dah de dah! It's down the end of Lonely Street, it's Heartbreak hotel! La dee dum!
Queen: Alas, poor dear, what does this song mean?
Ophelia: What did you say? Never mind, just listen! Whee! [Sings.] It's the story of a lovely lady, who was bringing up three very lovely girls! Tra la la dee dah! Mary had a little lamb... Dum dee dah dee dum! La la la la Bamba! Hee hee! Memory, all alone in the moonlight! La dee dah de dum!
Queen: Uh...Ophelia...?
Ophelia: Shut up and listen! [Sings.] Great big gobs of greasy grimy gopher guts! La dee dah! Welcome to the Hotel California! Whee! When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are! Hee hee hee! Que sera, sera, whatever will be, will be! Do re mi fa sol la ti do! Doe, a deer, a female deer! Ray, a drop of golden sun!
[Enter King.]
Queen: Geez, dear, check out poor Ophelia! She's gone totally mad!
Ophelia: [Sings.] Twinkle, twinkle, little star! How I wonder what you are! Doo bee doo bee doo! Strangers in the night! Lah de dah! Monday, Tuesday, Happy Days! Hee hee! Whee! Hakuna Matata! It's our worry-free philosopy! Hakuna Matata!
King: Are you okay, Ophelia?
Ophelia: Well, they say the owl was a baker's daughter. Your Majesty, we know what we are, but know not what we may be. Yippee yi ki yi!
King: Are you upset about what happened to your father, Polonius?
Ophelia: Oh, don't mention that. Now, everybody sing! [Sings.] And Iiiiiiiiiiii-yi-yiiiiiiiii will always looooooooovvvve you! Ooh ooh ooh ooh! R E S P E C T, find out what it means to me! When a man loves a woman...! La dee dah! So no one told you life was gonna be this way! Your job's a joke, you're broke, your love life's D.O.A.! Doo bee doo bee doo! Every night in my dreams, I see you, I feel you! That is how I know you go on! Rawhide! Gettum up, movem out! Rawhide! Everybody, sing!
King: You're right, honey, she is nuts!
Ophelia: I sure am! Totally nuts! Whee! [Sings.] Stayin' alive! Stayin' alive! Whoah oh oh oh, stayin' alive! Stayin' alive! Hee hee! Figaro, Figaro, Figaroooooooh! Do re mi fa sol la ti do ti la sol fa mi re do! Maria! The most beatiful sound I ever heard! Maria! Say it loud and there's music playing! Hee hee! La dee dah! Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday to you! Dum dee dum dee dum! Play that funky music!
 King: How long has she been like this?
Ophelia: I hope everything turns out okay, but someday we'll all die. I will be able to lie by my dear father in the cold ground and get eaten up by worms. Yipee! Have you told my brother Laertes that Father is dead? Well, anyway, I've got to be going. Taxi! Good night, ladies. Good night, sweet ladies. Good night, good night.
[Ophelia skips out of the room.]
King: Follow her and keep a close eye on her. Please.
[Exit Horatio.]
King: What a bummer. She's grieved herself into madness. O Gertrude, darling, when bad things happen, they never seem to come alone. First, Polonius slain, then Hamlet goes crazy and we have to send him away, the people are upset, and now poor Ophelia has lost her mind! And to top it all off, Laertes has snuck into the country from France and is really ticked about his father's murder.
Queen: Uh oh. What's that noise?
King: Guards? What was that?
[Enter a Messenger.]
King: What's the matter?
Messenger: Oh, Your Majesty, you're in great danger! Laertes has stirred up the people and they're revolting! They blame you for Polonius' death and want to make Laertes king!
[Outside, a crowd is shouting "Laretes shall be king!"]
Queen: No, no, they're all wrong. Hamlet killed Polonius, not the King!
King: They just broke the doors down!
[Enter Laertes with others.]
Laertes: Where's that rotten, snot-nosed excuse for a king? [To his followers] Maybe you guys should stay outside.
Followers: Aw, but we wanna come in!
Laertes: No, please, leave me alone.
Followers: Oh, all right. But that's no fun!
Laertes: Thanks. Watch the door.
[Exit his Followers.]
Laertes: Now, you vile king, what happened to my father? I demand you tell me right now, you great big poo-poo head!
Queen: Calm down, Laertes.
Laertes: If I didn't avenge my father's death, it would be like disowning him!
King: Why have you stirred up this huge mob? Let him go, Gertrude. We're all friends here. Laertes, what's your problem?  Come on, tell me!
 Laertes: Where is my father?
King: Dead.
Queen: But the King didn't do it!
King: Let him talk now.
Laertes: How did he die? Don't mess with my mind. I don't care if you are the king, I'll kick the snot out of whoever killed my father! If I go to Hell, so be it! I must avenge my father!
King: What could stop you?
Laertes: Nothing in the world! I'll do anything! Anything at all!.
King: Good Laertes, I understand you're upset. But surely you don't want to kill everyone. We're your friends. Tell you what; I'll tell you who killed your father if you promise not to hurt me.
Laertes: I will kill my enemies, no matter who they are.
King: You want to know who killed him?
Laertes: I'd be forever grateful.
King: Now you're talking sense. I'm terribly sorry for your father's death, although I was in no way responsible. [A noise at the door] Let her come in.
Laertes: What now? What's that noise?
[Re-enter Ophelia, looking very crazy.]
Laertes: Oh, no! Oh horrors! Ophelia! My dear sister has gone mad with grief! Ooh, somebody's going to pay for this! Oh, you poor, lovely, sweet sister, sweet Ophelia! Oh heavens! Is it possible that a young lady's sanity is as fragile as an old man's life? How can fate be so cruel?
Ophelia: [Sings.] Lah dee dah! The Great American Road belongs to Buuuuuuuuuick! Have you driven a Ford laaaaaaaaaaaately?! The hills are alive with the sound of music! Don't tell my heart, my achy-breaky heart! I just don't think he'd understand! Doo bee doo bee doo! You can't touch this! Doo doo doo doo!
Laertes: If you were sane and begged me to avenge father's death, you wouldn't be as convincing as you are now. Poor Ophelia!
Ophelia: [Sings more] Everybody dance now! Come on, baby let's do the twist! Don't cry for me Argentina! I never really left you! Lah dee dah dee dah! I just called to say I love you!
Laertes: Nothing could be worse than this!
Ophelia: It's a small world, after all! It's a small world, after all! It's a small, small world!
Laertes: I was wrong. That's worse.
Ophelia: Here, dear brother, have a flower. Here's rosemary, that's for remembrance. So remember. And here's some pansies, thoughts. And he's some cornflowers just because.
Laertes: Text book madness!
Ophelia: [Hands out flowers to bystanders.] There's fennel for you, and columbines. There's rue for you, and here's some for me. Don't we look pretty? There's a daisy. I'd give you some violets, but they all withered when my father died. They say he died well. [Sings.] Oh Danny Boy! The pipes, the pipes are calling! Deck the halls with boughs of holly, fa la la la la la la la la! Everything I do, I do it for you!
 Laertes: She's totally gone. Alas!
Ophelia: [Sings.] Michael, row the boat ashore! Halleujah! Doo bee doo bee doo! Weeeeeeeeeee are the champions, my friend! La dee dah dee dah! Hee hee! Under the sea! Lah duh duh duh! Pretty woman, walkin' down the street! Pretty woman, that I'd like to meet! Whee! O solo mio!
[Ophelia skips out of the room, throwing flowers in the air and gigging.]
Laertes: Did you see that, Your Majesty? Oh, horrors!
King: Laertes, I share your grief. It's a tragedy. Now, trust me. I had nothing to do with your father's death, so please don't over run the palace and overthrow me. Give me a chance and I can explain everything. In fact, I'll even help you get revenge.
Laertes: Okay. Good. Alas, my poor father! Murdered, buried in the cold ground without ceremony, without fame! Oh, God, I want to cry! I must avenge his death!
King: You will, and I'll help you see to it that it's done properly. Now, come with me.