I once again am talking about romance in musicals. True, I brought up unrequited love a couple of times before. But there was so many characters who deal with it, but respond in different ways. Some characters poorly respond to it while other characters respond to it in a good way. There are some very unusual and ironic situations when it comes to the unrequited love.
Elphaba/Glinda- well this is where I find a very odd situation. They are part of a love triangle where they both love Fiyero. Fiyero starts out being this rather cool boy who doesn’t really care much for anything. In the beginning, Elphaba did not like Fiyero. In addition, Fiyero and Glinda started dating so they ended up in a relationship. Well, the lion cub scene indicates that Elphaba has fallen in love with Fiyero, and after the scene, “I’m Not That Girl”, the unrequited love song, is sung by Elphaba. She doesn’t think she is good enough for Fiyero because she is green and does not try to pursue him because her best friend is in a relationship with them. The unrequited love in this case shows Elphaba and Glinda’s loyalty.
It might seem as if Elphaba will always have the unrequited love, but things do take an unexpected turn. Back to the lion cub scene, if you were clearly paying attention, it almost seems as if Fiyero has a crush on Elphaba, but deep down he doesn’t quite realize it. Act II starts up and Fiyero is listening to all of these rumors spread about Elphaba and he knows they are not true and realizes that Glinda is not the girl for him, but instead it is Elphaba. So you have a bit of an unrequited love shift going on here. Elphaba and Fiyero in my opinion are a better couple than Glinda and Fiyero because they have a better chemistry and their song, “As Long As Your’e Mine” shows a sense of maturity. Glinda responds to the unrequited love in a similar way that Elphaba responds because she too like Elphaba does not try to steal him away from Elphaba.
But still this unrequited love situation between Elphaba and Glinda is quite odd and ironic because they are both involved in the same love triangle, but yet both deal with unrequited love at some point.
Boq- well this is another unrequited love situation in Wicked. I always seem to overlook Boq as there is not as much attention focused on him as there is on Elphaba, Fiyero, and Glinda. Boq obviously has a crush on Glinda, but it is clear that Glinda is just not interested in him. So we have a bit of a love square going on. He responds by staying faithful towards Glinda. He asks her out during “Dancing Through Life” and that is when you know that he has a crush on her, but she says something around the lines of that is so sweet, but instead asks him to go out with Nessa and he does. So his story actually seems to revolve around unrequited love unlike Glinda and Elphaba, whose stories revolve around friendship.
Nessa-what did I just say? I just said Wicked is home to a love square, but here I just threw in another part of the equation. Nessa, Elphaba’s younger sister, ends up falling in love with Boq. She is someone who does not seem to respond that well to unrequited love. At first, she doesn’t know that Boq doesn’t love her, but the audience does. To keep Boq under her care, she imprisons all the Munchkins since Boq is one himself. So she basically wants Boq all to herself. After seeing that Boq isn’t into her, she responds by trying to cast a spell on him to get him to stay, but the spell goes terribly wrong, which ends up shrinking his heart and all Elphaba knows to save him is to turn him into a tin man, but Nessa places the blame on Elphaba.
So Wicked has four, not one character deal with unrequited love. That makes it quite an interesting romantic arc. But the main trio is who I focus on the most and that main trio is my favorite of the love arc.
The Phantom- this unrequited love situation is easier to follow than Wicked’s. In Phantom of the Opera, the love triangle is straightforward so it is always Phantom with the unrequited love. He is yet a second person who does not respond well to the unrequited love. He wants Christine all to himself and does everything in his power to make sure she gets a lead role in the shows. He responds in very destructive and revengeful ways. He threatens the Opera House and threatens Christine when he makes her choose between being with him or killing Raoul. So he honestly does not respond well to the unrequited love even though he lets her go at the end. The Phantom, being as dark and mysterious as him, makes this love triangle so unique.
Eponine-like seriously, what would an unrequited love post be without Eponine? She like the Phantom has a story that revolves around unrequited love. She is deeply in love with Marius, but he loves Cosette. To understand why she loves Marius so much is to understand her life outside of him. Her life outside of Marius is dark and empty and lonely. She was raised to be a criminal and a thief by her selfish and greedy parents. No one treated her kindly growing up. Marius was the first and only person in her life to treat her with kindness and that is why she loves him so deeply.
Eponine responds by showing true love towards Marius. She would do anything for him. She helps Marius and Cosette get together even though it hurts. She prevents her father and his gang from robbing Valjean’s house when Marius is with Cosette. She may not have been raised right, but at least being in love with Marius makes her a better person and chooses to be loyal to him instead of her parents.
Her unrequited love does take her to the barricade and in the stage show, when Marius noticing that she is there sends her away with a love letter to Cosette in order to protect her. Her unrequited love song, “On My Own” shows just how strong her love for Marius is and how empty her life is. Even though Marius tries to protect her, she still goes back to the barricade and gets shot, but it comes with fatal consequences. Even though her life is so tragic, at least she gets to die in the arms of the man she loves. She like Elphaba, Glinda, and Boq responds to unrequited in a good way unlike the way that Phantom and Nessa respond.
This is crazily three musicals, but yet there are six characters dealing with unrequited love. The Wicked situation is why there are so many since four characters in that musical go through unrequited love. The love triangle between Elphaba, Glinda, and Fiyero strengthens the friendship between Glinda and Elphaba because it helps shows their loyalty towards each other. The love triangle between Phantom, Christine, and Raoul is basically the entire story and is straightforward. The love triangle between Cosette, Marius, and Eponine adds more to the love theme in Les Mis. So unrequited love happens in musicals and it is crazy how its still unrequited love, but yet these characters respond in different ways.