I want to write an alternative version of Romeo and Juliet where instead of being a little ponce and trying to work things out for himself, Romeo asks his smarter friends what to do about the whole thing and Benvolio and Mercutio come up with the world’s greatest plan:
Marriage of convenience between Juliet and Mercutio.
Think about it.
Juliet’s parents want her to marry into the Prince’s family. Mercutio is a good compromise between no marriage and Paris.
Mercutio probably won’t get his inheritance if he keeps being HELLA FUCKING GAY ALL OVER THE PLACE so a beard is only a benefit to him.
They would probably get along great rolling their eyes at how adorably stupid Romeo is.
Romeo and Benvolio could get a “bachelor pad” right next to Juliet and Mercutio’s house. Every night, Romeo and Mercutio high five as they hop the fence to go bang their one true love.
The second half of the play is just all of them trying to keep up the charade and being “THIS CLOSE” to getting caught all the time. But everything ends nicely because true love conquers all.
Everybody wins. Nobody dies.
This has probably been said on this post before but it makes a reasonable amount of literary sense as well.
A lot of Shakespeare’s works, comedy in particular but also relatively serious plays like The Merchant Of Venice, were based in the tropes of Italian commedia, which is eventually where we get French sex farces from as well.
Add in a servant who facilitates the nightly transfer and wants to get laid with one of the housemaids, some jokes between characters about people thinking Romeo and Benvolio are fucking all night long, Romeo in drag once or twice, and either a lecherous elderly neighbor or Juliet’s father always hanging around, and you’ve basically got the plot of a commedia performance. Especially funny at the time would have been dressing Romeo in drag (say, to pretend to be her lady in waiting when her dad almost catches him in some other man’s marital bed in the middle of the day) while Juliet was already being played by a boy actor in drag, and having Romeo pull it off so well that he gets mistaken for her.
But yeah, R&J as a door-slammin’ sex comedy, I’d watch it.