History buffs and Shakespeare nerds gather 'round! I just found my new favorite show, and with what I'm about to tell you, it might become your new favorite show too. Whether you dislike Shakespeare or not.

Welcome to punk rock Elizabethan London.

 

I know most people hear "Shakespeare" and immediately roll their eyes. I know. We all have horrible experiences with Shakespeare from high school that, to this day, make us slightly detest the man. But this show might make you change your feelings about him.

 

"Will" is about how William Shakespeare got his start in playwriting. Which, now that I say it out loud, isn't really a lot of incentive to watch the show. Let me explain why this show is so awesome...

 

Exhibits A and B...

 

The late 1500's were a scary time politically, and religiously. Politics were ruled by religion, and at this time religion was at war. The Protestants vs. the Catholics to be exact. Protestants were torturing Catholics for information about other Catholics so that they could be punished for essentially "believing the wrong thing" and "living in sin". Protestants had very strict rules. They were like the anti-fun police. And they were in charge.

 

Theater was one of the things on the Protestants "no-no" list. Men dressing as women? Wearing make-up? Doing obscene things on the stage? Blasphemy! Sin!

 

But, while the Protestants thought theater was evil, the people loved it. Theater at this time was like a rock concert. It was new and bright and flashy! It was entertaining! You could yell things at the stage! You could drink! Also, it brought in great revenue...Which means that, while the Protestants didn't like it, and condemned it, they couldn't really do anything about it because $$.

 

What I love about the show is that they actually dress the lower class theater goers (the people in the "pit") and the actors and writers, as Elizabethan punks. They've got brightly colored hair, tattoos, and piercings. I love it. Because while it's not physically historically accurate, it is metaphorically. These people were the "punks" of their time.

 

Warped Tour: 1592

 

So, back to the topic at hand, after I went on that historical tangent: Why should you watch this show? Well, this show has everything:

-Sex
-Politics
-The most nudity you can put on cable tv at 8pm
-Drama
-Feuds
-More sex
-Adultery
-An Elizabethan rap battle
-Partying
-History
-Blood
-Executions
-Sass
-Spies

 

And that was all just in the first 2 episodes.

 

This isn't just a show about William Shakespeare. It's a show about a man trying to find his way one of the LARGEST cultural centers in the world at the time (London) and making a living doing what he loves. It's history. It's drama. It's entertainment. And it's got The Clash's "London Calling" in it. (The soundtrack is awesome, seriously.)

 

So check out Will on TNT, Mondays at 8 and change your perspective of Shakespeare.

He's not just a dick that made us read weird words in high school.