For my representation of Commedia Del Arte today, I have chosen a very popular comedy TV Show called The Simpson’s. This TV show has many examples of modern commedia in it. Modern examples of Commedia Del Arte can be hard to find today, but I believe The Simpson’s is a wonderful adaption.
In Commedia their are certain stock characters. Such as the pantelone, dottore, Isabella or the zanni. All of the characters placed in Commedia Del Arte play key roles in what happens in the tv show or movie. Most commedia adaptations are romantic comedies, where there are two lovers who face obstacles or have conflict, but in the end are always together somehow. The conflict would be the comedy part. I thought, instead of using a romantic comedy movie or tv show, using a cartoon comedy show would be unique in interpreting modern Commedia Del Arte.
In the case of the Simpson’s, the pantelone would be Mr. Burns. The pantelone is always the old man who is usually miserable, and tries inflict conflict on the characters. For the doctor, it would probably be Chief Wiggum. The doctor usually has a high position in society, and thinks he is smart, but usually ends up being ignorant. Chief Wiggum’s higher position would be him being a sheriff. The Zanni of The Simpson’s would be Homer Simpson. The zanni of the story usually is very dumb, and not very helpful, which is why Homer would be a great example of a zanni. There are several examples of Homer Simpson’s stupidity and uselessness on the tv show. The Isabella of The Simpson’s would be Marge Simpson. The Isabella of the story is usually, a beautiful headstrong woman who stands for what she believes in. The Isabella is usually admired by a man, in this case Homer Simpson being her husband.
Overall, The Simpson’s is a modern take on Commedia Del Arte.