|David Briggs: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde|| Christopher Cohan Center
San Luis Obispo, CA
Details of Jekyll and the Ticket Luck value
Jekyll and Hyde is a theatrical adaptation of the novella by Robert Louis Stevenson named “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde”. The book was originally published in 1886 and revolved around the story of a London based lawyer who is looking into a case for his friend, Dr. Henry Jekyll and another, Mr. Hyde. The work became famous for its documentation of different aspects of psychology, in particular, mental illness. One of the problems highlighted in the story was that of split personality. It inspired the psychological thriller genre and made way for many adaptations for both film and stage. The latest production is going on a tour of the country, so buy Jekyll tickets if you wish to see what the story is about.
Most adaptations of Stevenson’s work have not remained true to what the writer had originally intended. For example, most productions overlook the character of Utterson and narrate the story from Hyde and Jekyll’s point of views. People often have Jekyll and Hyde played by the same character, which ultimately finishes off the mystery angle that the writer had originally gone for. Today, the problem that has been identified as “dissociative personality disorder” has been more deeply explored in the stage adaptations of the novel. However, the basic storyline has remained the same; one of his personalities is good, and the other is evil. They coexist on different stages of morality. This part of the novel was so influential that the phrase “Jekyll and Hyde” exists today to explain a person who has different moral values in different situations.
Steveson had planned for a story that would deal with the good and the evil within a person as opposed to the protagonist, antagonist method that seemed to be popular with most writers. Jekyll was described as being a posh looking fifty year old man who felt like he is always in a constant battle with himself. He felt like he had to fight his evil impulses throughout his life which threaten to overtake his otherwise composed personality and his respectable stature. To “fix” himself, he develops a serum that could suppress these violent urges. But in doing as such, he is transformed into a different man altogether, a much more sinister looking; Edward Hyde. This new man is although smaller and younger, yet he is remorseless, ruthless and cruel. Eventually, Mr. Hyde starts to become stronger, so much so that Jekyll needs to take the serum repetitively to stop him from taking over his true personality.
The evil and sinister behavior that Hyde partakes has never truly been revealed in a worldly fashion. What is usually believed is that he defied the rules of Victorian morals and the religious laws that would bind the people of the time. He would steal things and engage in prostitutions. These were the things people would never have associated with the clean cut Mr. Jekyll who was a respectable man of propriety. Still, Hyde’s devious activities are the very things that would give him thrill—attacking, murdering, and becoming an outlaw was exhilarating.
This story inspired many other popular fictions, and continues to do so even today. Hitchcock’s “Psycho” similarly dealt with the dual personalities of “Norman Bates”, the younger good boy, and the sick, evil mother. The younger boy is the responsible one, looking after the mother and running their motel while the mother is the crazed one, who kills off the guests. Hulk and Two Face are also examples of stories depicting the same person with different personalities. Others have gone on to say that the entire superhero genre was inspired by Stevenson’s work because it essentially deals with people living a double life.
The theatrical representation will similarly deal with the Victorian standards of right and wrong, good and evil. The story will be fueled by the need for the unconscious mind taking over the conscious mind, taking the audience on a thrilling ride, full of mystery and sensation, making them getting Jekyll tickets worthwhile.