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August 8, 2009


yes Caylee, we will remember

by Andrea O'Connell
Ophelia asks for remembrance

Ophelia asks for remembrance

It is the eve of what would have been Caylee Anthony’s fourth birthday and still, each time I think about the circus that the case against Casey has become, the figurative stench of the whole affair assaults my senses all over again. 

 There is such a rotten smell to the whole aspect of this case.   (I wonder if Casey, George, and Cindy have gotten the real smell out of their noses yet.)  To those of us closely following this case, the sordidness of it stinks to high heaven. 

It is my love of Shakespeare that brings me back once again to this theme of comparing the case against Casey to the rotten stench in Hamlet’s Denmark.  (Examining this debacle through the lens of Hamlet is ripe with parallels.)

The rancid environment that wafts in, around, and over the Casey Anthony case is like a dirty and damp fog where treachery and murder creep about under a hanging cover of sickly grey mist. This rancid mist hung in Casey’s car, hangs around this case , and settles in the murderer’s footprints off of Suburban Drive. 

In the days before she abandoned her car, Casey sent text messages to Amy Huizenga that attempted to explain away the foul odor from her car: 

….definitely part of a dead animal [was] plastered to my car…

Trying to explain away the smell clearly points to her need to cover it up.  If it were an animal plastered to the car, why not have it removed? 

The character of Casey: Only Iago will do.

The plot of Hamlet may not mirror the Anthony case, but the characters and their circumstances are drawn from the same cloth, as I will attempt to illustrate for you.  However, in Hamlet, not even Claudius is a evil as Casey, though he did murder his own brother, he seems almost tame compared to a mother who could murder her own daughter.  So, I am looking to another one of Shakespeare’s cruel male tyrants to find Casey’s equal. 

Iago, the villain in Othello, bears a striking resemblance to Casey.  Do you know Iago?  He is probably one of Shakespeare’s most evil characters, by far, the sickest and cruelest.  He is a master manipulator, like Casey, and is the one responsible for the death of  Emilia (Iago’s own wife), Desdemona (Othello’s wife), and Othello (who kills himself as a result of Iago’s deeds). 

Iago says of himself:  I am not what I am.  And to Othello, manipulating him, he says:

O! beware, my lord, of jealousy;
It is the green-ey’d monster which doth mock
The meat it feeds on.

Evil and revenge are part of Iago’s nature.  He is a pure sociopath; and like Casey, only thinks of his own needs.  He is an apt twin for Casey Anthony.

Now back to the characters in Hamlet, where there are additional mirrors. 

The Character of George: Polonius

George Anthony, like the hapless and pompous Polonius, Ophelia’s father, who says to his son, Laertes:

Above all else, to thine own self be true

Sadly, Polonius goes on to dissemble and deceive, ultimately hurting his daughter, Ophelia, his Son, Laertes, and is subsequently, though accidently, murdered by Hamlet.   

Lee Anthony: Laertes

Laertes, son of Polonius, like Lee Anthony, is passionate but seeks revenge without knowing the truth.  Lee Anthony, according to WESH News, has been granted use immunity which is a common tool used in the law to protect a witness in a criminal trial from inadvertently incriminating his or herself as a result of direct testimony given. 

According to WESH News, Thomas Luka, Lee’s attorney, contends that Lee:

Spilled it all and nothing was different.

Time will tell.

Cindy Anthony.  Who else but Queen Gertrude

Now, on to Queen Gertrude, Hamlet’s mother.  Like Cindy, Queen Gertrude refuses to accept or know the truth, though it stares her smack in the face.  The Queen is guilty of  ignoring the truth, just as Cindy portrays herself as being above everyone, above all laws, so does the Queen. Gertrude is shallow and selfish. In a famous line, Queen Gretrude says with regards to a character in the play, who is really a parody of the Queen herself:

The lady doth protest too much, methinks.

And, one of Hamlet’s most famous lines about his mother, the Queen is:

Frailty, thy name is woman!

Dear Caylee, and gentle Ophelia

On to Ophelia, the only pure heart among the lot of them in Hamlet. Ophelia is Polonius’s daughter, with whom Hamlet has been in love.  She is a sweet and innocent young girl who drowns in a river surrounded by the flowers and herbs she loves and has just gathered.  Before she dies, Ophelia says to those who love her:

Here’s rosemary, that’s for remembrance. Pray, love, remember.

Yes, Caylee. We will remember.

8 Comments Post a comment
  1. Hilde
    Aug 8 2009

    Andrea, I like Your Post. It is very interesting especially the Comparison You made between the Plot of Hamlet and the Anthony Case. How fitting indeed this Comparison is.
    Very well put.
    It makes Sense to me.
    Thanks Andrea to look at this Case in a different Perspective. 🙂 JMO

    • Andrea
      Aug 8 2009

      Hi Hilde,

      Thank you so much. It’s funny that in all of Shakespeare there is not a single female character as wicked as Casey… Well, Medea comes to mind – she murdered her two children in the play, but Medea was written by Euripedes. Medea and Casey are clearly equals.

      In truth, not even Shakespeare could conjure up such cruelty…

      All the best, Hilde, and thanks again,

  2. starfish
    Aug 9 2009

    Very good comparisons andrea.
    Poor Caylee….such a short life….we will never forget little Caylee.

    • Andrea
      Aug 9 2009


      that is what is so wonderful…we have all come together as friends – real friends – out of our remorse over the death of such innocence. It’s difficult to put grief in words sometimes. The only good that has come from this is that we have grown into a community of people who take comfort in each other, knowing we all feel the same sadness, we give eachother comfort as a community of people who care.

      Thank you for your frienship, Star.


  3. Debbie
    Aug 9 2009

    Love the comparisons Andrea…..very well written…you re so gifted!! So sad to know we will never know what Caylees gift would have been……….

    • Andrea
      Aug 9 2009


      Thank you so much for your kind words. To wonder what that gorgeous child could have been is heartbreaking beyond words. I have faith that her little soul is now at peace and is delighting in the fact that we all care so deeply for her memory.

      Extending my deepest gratitude for your friendship.


  4. Jill from Western Australia
    Aug 9 2009

    Thanks for the article Andrea…I lit an 8 hour gardenia candle this morning…sadly it won’t last much longer {its ~5pm Sunday here in Oz}. 😥

    Hugs for Caylee Marie ♥♥♥

    • Andrea
      Aug 9 2009

      Hi Jill,
      It’s Sunday here in the states and I have followed you and lit a little rose colored candle in my living room in memory.

      Thank you for stopping here, Jill, and reminding me to light a candle in Caylee’s honor today.



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