PR to Pygmallion

The adaptation of the original story by Bernard Shaw was quite clever, as he was able to transform a romance story from early times, into a realistic drama that lacks romance but is still considered one by many people. The original story involves a sculptor, who sculpted his ideal woman, and the goddess Aphrodite granted his wish by bringing her to life, which led to  them they getting married with everyone happy. Shaw’s adaptation on the hand was very different, it had a childish and almost hateful relationship between the main male and female cast in the story. (Liza) “I won’t care for anybody that doesn’t care about me”, (Higgins)” Commercial principles, Eliza (reproducing her Covent Garden pronunciation with professional exactness) s’yollin voylets, isn’t it? “(Liza) “Don’t sneer at me. It’s mean to sneer at me”. (Higgins) “I have never sneered at anyone in my life.” (Pg, 68). Most of their interactions ends up with a fierce argument, over some silly dilemma, usually ones that can be solved easily too. Now, knowing that it was adapted from a romance, you would expect Liza and Higgins to make up somehow and end up falling for each other and then getting married. But that notion is destroyed, as the play ends with yet another argument between them, and Liza going against Higgins’ wishes and marrying the very man he despises, and thinks of as a wimp and an embarrassment, not worthy of the masterpiece he created.

However, you could argue that Higgins might have had some feelings but his nature got in the way and ruined things.  (Higgins) “About you, not about me. If you come back I shall treat you just as I have always treated you. I can’t change my nature, and I don’t intend to change my manners. My manners are exactly the same as Colonel Pickering’s”. (Pg, 66). (Higgins) “I can do without anybody. I have my own soul: my own spark of divine fire. But (with sudden humility) I shall miss you”. (Pg, 67). (Higgins) ” You might  even be what they call “attractive”. (Pg 56). It is evident that Higgins has some warm feelings towards her, but they are likely not romantic  due to the lack of evidence. Although, the peculiarity about Higgin’s character is that those feelings could be romantic but because of his nature, they are expressed in ways in which we (the audience) are unable to decipher.