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How Come You Ain't Never Liked Me?

Posted by ktrigilio on March 12, 2014 at 11:30 AM

When viewing the videos, consider the following:

 1. What is Troy’s objective?

2. What is Troy’s motivation?

3. How might Troy’s motivation differ for the two actors?

4. What physical and vocal choices do the actors make to depict their character and convey their objective?Consider the blocking choices. When is there distance between Troy and Cory? When are they close up?

5. What lines or phrases resonate with you? 

After viewing the videos, evaluate which performance wasmore authentic to the text. Consider Wilson’s intent in the scene and how each actor was able to convey it. 

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9 Comments

Reply Bethany Gray
3:00 PM on March 12, 2014 
The first video took a tense subject and made it funny. It was light-hearted, but still got the point across. In the second video, Troy was angry and his son seemed almost scared of him as he stood and took his lecture. I personally imagined the scene to be like the James Earl Jones one, but I liked the first clip better. I think that Wilson probably wanted it to be like JEJ, because the play overall seems like that sort of tone.
Reply Meggie Wambui
6:39 PM on March 12, 2014 
Both of the films had the same aspects in the message that Wilson was portraying. In the first clip with Denzel Washington it was a humorous adaptation o f the seene I. Which you would not have though of. The second video had a more surreal fell to it- in it intensity played by Tory- was what I had imagined it to be like. To say the lest for Wilson's perspective I fell that he meant that the scenes can be either serious of funny depending on the reader or audiance.
Reply Christina Giambanco
9:55 PM on March 12, 2014 
I thought the first video was an interesting adaptation of the scene because when I read it, I wasn't expecting it to be funny but it worked and I thought the comedy was done well. The second video was almost exactly how I pictured the scene playing out when I read it and I really liked the intensity of it. Overall I think the second video portrayed the message Wilson was trying to get across clearer.
Reply Elizabeth Murphy
10:06 PM on March 12, 2014 
1. Troy's objective is to teach Cory a lesson. He's a teacher who always wants to share his knowledge and self-thought wisdom. Here he is attempting to show Cory that life becomes much harder when your motivation or feelings are dependent on others liking you. Troy, who loves his son in a fatherly way, wants to show that being a father isn't always about love but responsibility.
2. The motivation of this monologue is slightly skewed without context. By simply taking it on it's own, Troy's motivation seems to be to simply tell his son off for bothering him about a seemingly tender subject. But Jones interpretation is closer to what I pictured while reading of a man harshly revealing a reality to his son and at the end, after he has gotten out his frustration on the subject, tries to reach out but is a much too intimidating person to truly reach them. Now, what I actually think his motivation is to try and help Cory not make the same mistakes that he did. To reveal to him a harsh truth without Cory having to experience it himself.
3. I already talked about this a bit in the last question but essentially, one interpretation, such as the Denzel Washington one, is lighter, funnier with a message both to the audience and Cory and the motivation seems more lesson like. James Earl Jones is more of a taking down a peg first and then lesson.
4. Well, let's just start with, James Earl Jones is practically perfection in this clip. He commands attention from Cory and Cory works perfectly with him by being a nice Foil. His voice, stature, muscle all work in his favor of portraying Troy as a commanding, filling presence. With Denzel Washington there is more of a flippant almost sluggish (slouched shoulders, inclined head) look about him. James Earl Jones stands up straight, keeps his head inclined up to the ceiling and even while he's talking you can just seem him projecting, it's ridiculous. There is also the difference in touch. Denzel Washington has physical contact with Cory a couple times in the video whereas James Earl Jones doesn't initiate contact at any point except near the end but to emphasize a point. With Denzel Washington there is also a degree of physical separation but then after the first couple lines, Cory moves right up to Troy. With James Earl Jones, Cory stays much farther away. This is, of course, to emphasize the intimidation factor that is very important with JEJ. JEJ also makes a very interesting decision that, when asked a question, he takes what's in his hands and slams it to the ground which gives his character an almost violent factor.
5. "How come you ain't never like me?" / "Like you? How in the hell ever say I had to like you" / "Answer me when I talk to you" / "A man got to take care of his family" / "Now you get the hell outta my face and go on down to the A & P" /
Reply Sarah Urbanski
11:53 PM on March 13, 2014 
The clip with James Earl Jones seemed to possess more of the tone that Wilson created in the play. The apprehensiveness of Cory was more like what I imagined while reading this scene. After all, he is being scolded for quitting his job and playing football instead of working, whether it be at the A&P or around the house. The intensity in James Earl Jones' voice as he is yelling supports Troy's stern character that Wilson has portrayed.
I did not imagine this scene as humorous when reading it, but after watching the first clip, it made sense for those parts to be humorous however, some of the seriousness and tenseness of the scene was lost because of the suggested humor. Overall, I believe that the second clip was the more accurate representation of the scene Wilson creates in his play.
Reply Jordan P
10:13 AM on March 17, 2014 
The first video made a situation that was very tense and made it more into a funny event. Although it was funny it got the point across to us. In the second clip Troy was more aggresive and angry. I like the second video because in this part of the play i imagined Troy as this type of person and in the second flip he really drove this point home. I liked both protrayals of Troy but Troys anger in the second one stood out to me more.
Reply Santo dimino
7:15 AM on March 18, 2014 
The first video moves the scene in a humorous and funny direction , without though missing the whole point. The second one I was closer to my expectations as it was clearly as aggressive and intense as it is when reading it.
Reply Daniel Wood
9:19 AM on April 2, 2014 
1. Troy's objective seems to be to teach his son a harsh lesson that it doesn't matter whether or not someone likes you as long as they treat you well.
2.Troy's motivation is to make his son care less about what people think of him so he can go and take jobs like a trash worker as long as it pays.
3.In Denzel's version it seems more like he is trying to scold Cory whereas in James' version it sounds more like he is actually trying to teach his boy a lesson.
4.Denzel's voice was much higher and I think it made him seem to be showing his anger more than James, but James' soft deep voice made it sound like he was trying to hold in his anger the whole time and thus came off as even scarier. Both characters kept their bodies big as to make them seem more intimidating and both made Cory seem weak.
5.The best line for me was when James just rumbled out the line "what ever said I had to like you.
-over all I prefer the James Earl Jones version. His large persona and mean deep black voice made you scared that he was ready to explode at any time. Unlike a lot of other commentators I didn't find the Denzel Washington version that funny, I still thought that he was intimidating, but at the same time I think his motivations did not come out as clearly through his vocal actions.
Reply Kevin Rogers
9:32 AM on April 2, 2014 
1. Troy?s objective seems pretty clear; he is trying to get a point across to his son. That point being that no one on this planet owes him anything (including being liked), Cory?s own life is his responsibility and he should just be grateful that Troy has given him all the things he has in his life.
2. If I were to assume I would guess that Troy?s motivation comes from his past. In Troy?s life absolutely nothing was given to him expect the own two feet he walked on. There was not a single person to lend him a helping hand when he needed it, because of this I believe that he looks at Cory?s life angered with envy because he doesn?t even understand how lucky his is for the little he has.
3. Well the actors took two completely different approaches to the role. James Earl Jones attacked the scene with intensity that striked fear into Cory and the entire audience. While on the other hand Denzel Washington wasn?t exactly softer in the scene but had a more animated approach to it, leaving Cory still in fear but the audience more comfortable in their seats.
4. Well Denzel?s motions were more theatrical suggesting that he is putting on a show for everyone (also suggest in the book ?reaching profound heights of expression?) which becomes humorous for the audience. You can also pick that up in Denzel?s voice which seems a bit more playful and higher than James Earl Jones. Jones voice is deep, strong, and intense his physical presence is also strong and solid; through his physical and vocal choices James Earl Jones is able show Troy?s other side the hard, old, strong, and intense character. Cory seems to be farther away in the Jones version probably because they want to show the fear Troy put into him, in this version it is only Troy who approaches Cory not the other way around in the Washington version.
5. ?Liked you? Who the hell say I got to like you??