As I was telling my friend Lu, the tragedy of ‘Henry V’, and Henry V, is that for all the hand-of-God achievements he made as a warrior and a king, it was all gone to hell by the time Henry VI got done with England and what was left of France. And because I can’t help myself when it comes to pointing out the parallels in certain aspects of our culture, it brings to mind the poem by Percy Bysshe Shelley, ‘Ozymandias,’ that recently came into the spotlight when the producers of ‘Breaking Bad’ used it in a trailer. The final lines read–
And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
In other words, once you’re dead, it’s unlikely that there will be anyone around to defend your legacy indefinitely, so get over yourself.
But there’s no reason why we can’t enjoy the Shakepeare/Hiddleston legacy for the rest of the year. When ‘The Hollow Crown’ aired in Britain last summer, a kind Tumblrite made these wonderful wallpapers. If you like to plan ahead, they make a great slideshow for your desktop.