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Violence in Blood Brothers

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Erin Burke-Mackey

on 12 July 2016

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Transcript of Violence in Blood Brothers

Social Class
As a child Mickey and his friends often play a variety of games that are all linked to guns and death. Their lack of education, shows they have no understanding of the impact of violence. They don't understand that they couldn't just "get up off the ground again" in real life and as they grow up, the pretend violence just turns into real violence.
When Mrs Lyons finds out that the Johnstones have moved to the countryside, and Edward has been visiting them, she visits Mrs Johnstone and tries to persuade her to leave.

She argues
"Wherever I go you’ll be just behind me. I know that now... always and for ever and ever like, like a shadow."

Mrs Lyons looses control and becomes paranoid, then accuses Mrs Johnstone of following her. She then lunges at Mrs Johnstone with a kitchen knife. This reflects how violence is linked to feelings of powerlessness and instability. Mrs Lyons jumps to conclusions and she starts to become superstitious. She thinks that Mrs Johnstone is following her to try and get Edward back. Violence is a reaction by characters to their feelings of weakness and lack of control over what happens to them. The character becomes violent when they feel despairing or feel they have lost control of their lives. This is obvious through the characters of Mrs Lyons and Mickey in particular.
Verbal Violence
Micky's brother, Sammy, had a big influence on Micky's life. From a young age, Micky always wanted to be Sammy, from spitting someone in the eye from twenty yards, playing with matches and peeing in the neighbour's letterbox. As a child Sammy is quite naughty, however as he grows up his behavior becomes steadily worse and his 'pranks' become more serious, especially since he burned the school down and when Micky is 14 years old, Sammy robbed the bus conductor at knife point. As a child Sammy is quite naughty, however as he grows up his behavior becomes steadily worde.he would fall into the stereotypical roots of the working class life and go into the life of crime, leading to him killing an innocent. This had an effect on Micky, making him kill his brother.
Violence in Blood Brothers
By Emily and Emilia
Violence has a presence in the working class characters’ lives from a young age. When we first meet Mickey as a child, he has a toy gun and he plays games involving imaginary guns with his friends. The violence escalates as the play progresses, ending in the tragic death of the twins. Violence reflects a lack of control; when characters start to lose power in some way, they become more violent. For example, when Mrs Lyons looses her mind, she turns to violence and yells "Witch. I curse you witch!" This shows her weakness and that she has lost control.
"But you know that if you cross your fingers.

The whole thing’s just a game."
It doesn't matter.
You can get up off the ground again.
And if you count from one to ten.
At this point in the play, the violence is only 'pretend' and after being ‘killed’, you can just carry on. However, the games foreshadow the later violence at the end of the play, and it reminds us of how present this is in the characters’ lives.
While Sammy persuades Mickey to help with a robbery, Edward asks Linda to marry him. He doesn't know that Linda is already married to Mickey, which emphasizes the distance between the boys.

By showing the two conversations simultaneously, Russell increases the pace of the scene. It also emphasize that both boys are at a crossroad. Mickey has to decide whether to commit a crime and Edward whether to try to take his best friends wife - both make wrong decisions.

During his time in jail, Mickey becomes depresses and hooked on anti-depressants. Mrs Johnstone likens Mickey's problems to those of Marilyn Monroe and says that
"His mind's gone dancing"
. The motifs of Monroe and dancing were used previously to symbolise happiness. Now, they emphasize how wrong things have gone for Mickey.

After the robbery, Mickey repeats "You shot him, you shot him" and Sammy replies
"I know i bloody did." This together with the rhyme of
, mirrors the pattern of speech in the childrens game in Act One. This emphasizes that their childhood is over and it's not
"just a game"
When Mickey and Edward are 18 years old, and Eddie comes back from university, Mickey uses verbal violence to offend Edward. Instead of physically attacking him, he uses words. He is jealous of the life Eddie has, although he may have refused to admit it before. Edward has had the life he always wanted, and can go to parties, drink booze and listen to music without a care in the world, because he never had to grow up. Mickey has had to face the 'real world' and struggle with jobs. He takes his anger of having to grow up out on Eddie.
Violence in Blood Brothers
In conclusion, there is a lot of violence in Blood Brothers. This violence leads to the death and harm of many characters in the play, including the two main characters, Mickey and Edward. If there wasn't as much violence as there is in the play, it would be less likely that both Mickey and Edward would die at the end, completing the made-up superstition from Mrs Lyons. Following on from that, if violence wasn't as frequent in 20th century Liverpool, Mrs Johnstone, despite how superstitious she may have been, would have been less likely to believe this belief from Mrs Lyons. Violence was all too common and nobody gave it a second glance until it became serious, and had long term effects, such as death.
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