Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio as Romeo and Juliet in Romeo + Juliet

Racist Conservatives Have Convinced Themselves Romeo and Juliet Are Historical Figures

Racist conservatives have been losing their minds after a casting announcement was made for West End’s Romeo & Juliet. However, things took a very odd turn when their main argument was that the casting choice “rewrote history” because Romeo and Juliet are apparently now real historical figures.

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West End’s Romeo & Juliet, directed by Jamie Lloyd, is highly anticipated, especially since it marks Tom Holland’s latest project. He is returning to theatre to portray the role of Romeo Montague in the stage adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragedy. While Holland announced his role weeks ago, it was only recently that the production announced it had found its Juliet in Francesca Amewudah-Rivers. Amewudah-Rivers is an Oxford University graduate who has worked on multiple projects with Shakespeare’s Globe and the National Theater. In addition to acting in projects such as Bad Education, she has written a short film and composed several soundtracks.

However, it didn’t take long for conservatives to begin their disgusting racist attacks over the casting of the Black actress. Sadly, it has now become customary for this response to arise, given that conservatives have decided casting any woman or non-white actors in any project is “woke.” Usually, outrage arises over some adaptation of a decades-old fictional work, like The Little Mermaid or Snow White, with middle-aged conservative men suddenly claiming that their entire existence depends upon a Disney princess in a children’s movie being white.

However, conservatives seemed to have realized how ridiculous it is to claim that a fictional character written decades ago can’t be changed whatsoever for a modern adaptation. So, they are now convincing themselves that fictional characters are real.

Conservatives think Romeo and Juliet are real

Romeo and Juliet began trending on social media after conservatives got wind of the casting announcement. To be clear, having this reaction to any casting is disgusting and unacceptable. However, it’s especially perplexing in a stage production. Anyone who knows anything about theatre knows that colorblind casting is customary. Plus, back in the day, Shakespeare would’ve had a man playing Juliet, so it’s not like there’s a history or tradition of super strict casting in stage productions. While people were trying to explain this to racists online, many were surprised and concerned to learn that conservatives appeared to believe Romeo and Juliet were real people.

One especially ignorant tweet went viral as the X user tried to raise hysteria claiming the casting choice means the production is “rewriting history in front of our very eyes.” Meanwhile, tens of thousands of racist users liked and reshared the tweet, with captions of their own outrage insisting the production is literally ignoring the historical record. One bizarre Tweet even called for “Italian historians” to weigh in on the extent of the historical inaccuracy. They really thought they had come up with such a clever argument, given that criticism does sometimes arise when real historical figures are whitewashed or race-swapped.

The bizarre argument did largely stop the debate online as one couldn’t help but almost feel pity for these conservatives. Oh honey, you thought Romeo and Juliet were real all this time? Even in the most generous possible reading, Shakespeare’s play was likely inspired by a 16th century poem, which is believed by some to have possibly been inspired by a real medieval family feud, although historians can’t even agree on which families were involved and even if they could, at the end of the day, Romeo and Juliet are still fictional characters.

So now most of the discussion on Romeo and Juliet on X has turned to everyone trying to break it to conservatives gently that Romeo and Juliet are, in fact, fictional, and no one is rewriting history by adapting a fictional work for the umpteenth time. They just seem so confused, though; we’re not entirely certain they know Leonardo DiCaprio isn’t actually Romeo or that Romeo and Juliet aren’t gnomes.

All these people really did was prove that they’re in dire need of an elementary history and literature lesson. After all, no one really knows why they’re even talking about West End’s Romeo & Juliet production in London in the first place. I’m sure the UK is just so concerned that a bunch of racist MAGA supporters in the United States who believe Romeo and Juliet are real are mad about a casting decision in a play they’ll never see.

(featured image: 20th Century Studios)


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Rachel Ulatowski
Rachel Ulatowski is a Staff Writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, literature, and celebrity news. She has over three years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant, JustWatch, and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.