More Into the Woods dorking ahead:
My friend and I were having an in depth conversation about a particular line. “I was just trying to be a good mother.” It’s a funny line! The audience laughed at it every night, partly because of the line itself and partly because I’d spent the last few moments imitating the ugly crying faces Rapunzel was making as she sobbed on the ground. So yeah, structured to be a comedic scene! But the more I think about it, the more sad it is. Because the Witch really WAS just trying to be a good mother. She had no idea what that even meant. Her mother was pretty much evil. Cursed her, possibly dragged her to hell/killed her (there’s lots of interpretations) at the end…yeah, not a very good mother figure. So the Witch tries to be everything for Rapunzel that she never got from her own mother. Love, care, protection…and ultimately fails. And wow, when it’s all in context “I was just trying to be a good mother” is just so so heartbreaking.