£151k to look like Shakespeare | Fit for a Fool

By April 10, 2015 No Comments

Sometimes, just sometimes, a ridiculous Shakespeare story arrives that seems to be made for this column. This week was one of those weeks. I give to you the Shakespeare plastic surgery tale – yes, I’m serious.

The mirror reports that a so-called Shakespeare “superfan” spent £151,000 –  yes, that’s right £151,000 – on plastic surgery to make himself look like Shakespeare. This saw him undergoing ten operations for this Shakespeare-surgery. The man in question, Zhang Yiyi, is a writer himself, as well as a fan, with a lifelong dream to actually look like Shakespeare. He even likes to claim a shared heritage with the writer, but I’ll let you read about that here. I hope as the plastic surgeons were doing their work they uttered lines like ‘out damn’d spot’ and ‘Go prick thy face’ but I sense not…

For now here’s his photograph so you can weigh in with your view and see whether you think Yiyi, 10 operations down and £151,000 the poorer, has achieved his dream to look like Shakespeare:

£151k to look like Shakespeare | Fit for a Fool shakespeare news The Shakespeare Standard shakespeare plays list play shakespeare

Zhang Yiyi (Photograph taken from The Mirror Online).


Good auditions, everyone!

And now for a bit of Shakespeare silliness. This week I came across a post on Buzzfeed entitled: ‘Animals Auditioning for Shakespeare’. Now this doesn’t involve dogs reciting lines or singing bears (unfortunately), but is instead a collection of photographs of animals captioned with Shakespearean lines from a variety of plays; from big bears to snow covered squirrels, there’s something for every animal and Shakespeare lover, and even if you’re not it might cheer-up your coffee break!


On Sunday many of us will have celebrated Easter, or at least eaten the chocolate eggs, bunnies, and chickens it brings us. But if you’re intrigued about Shakespeare and where Easter crops up in his plays, why not have a look at this post here which looks at the Easter echoes, thematic and specific, in Shakespeare’s plays.

By now you’ll probably have heard of Shakespeare’s Star Wars, but did you know about the hidden Easter eggs in Shakespeare’s Star Wars trilogy? Not quite the chocolate kind you might be familiar with, nor the kind you’d have scrambled on toast. Instead they’re a secret (or really not so secret) trail of references laid by author of the series Ian Doescher. To embark on this Shakespearean Star Wars-themed Easter egg hunt simply click here to find out more from the author himself. But not all the references are here; see if you can spot even more including ones to The Princess Bride, Inferno and even The Pirates of Penzance for a truly geeky Easter egg hunt.


£151k to look like Shakespeare | Fit for a Fool shakespeare news The Shakespeare Standard shakespeare plays list play shakespeare

Sticking with Shakespeare and Easter for a moment, have you seen this pun-filled photograph of eggcellent Shakespeare themed Easter jokes?

And because you’re all itching for one, here’s a Shakespeare quiz for you. It’s all about his life and reputation.

Finally, in slightly more tangential Shakespeare news, comedian David Mitchell (best known for his roles in Mitchell and Webb and Peep Show) is set to play Shakespeare in a new pilot show for the BBC called Upstart Crow. It’s to be a sitcom which focuses on the early years of Shakespeare’s life being billed by the BBC as:

‘A new situation comedy about the life of the nation’s best-loved bard before he became famous. A purloined play, a wise wife, a stroppy teen and the underhand machinations of England’s sexiest spy combine in a mirthful entertainment suitable for groundlings and gentlefolk alike.’

An interesting billing of a show about Shakespeare, but watch this space and BBC Two for more as production gets underway. And, if you’re feeling really eager (and you live in the UK) then you can even go and be part of the studio audience for the recording of the pilot show on April 27th. To apply for tickets and read more about the show click here.

But that’s all for now folks, until next time keep foolin’ around Shakespeare style.

Author Sarah Waters

Sarah Waters is a PhD student at Oxford Brookes University, England where she is currently researching female melancholia in the early modern period (as presented in Shakespearean and early modern drama and proto-medical treatises) and contemporary female depression. She is interested in all things Shakespeare related, particularly contemporary Shakespeare adaptation and appropriation.

More posts by Sarah Waters

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