In Brighouse’s play Hobson’s choice, Willie is presented as a completely changed character by act four compared to how he started off firstly in act one. Willie starts off as a shy and timid underpaid boot maker who eventually transforms into a confident and outgoing successful businessman. In act four Willie has now gained all the qualities to what Brighouse thinks makes a successful businessman.
Willie is no longer afraid to stand up for himself against others which is shown in act four on page 79 when Willie says “I’ll take you into partnership and give you your half share on the condition you’re a sleeping partner and don’t try interference on with me” where Willie is now taking full control. In act one Willie would never have even thought about saying anything like this to Hobson as he would have been too scared and worried about how Hobson would react. Willie is also more ambitious now hand has already set his sights higher has on page one willies talks about opening a high class shop in the prestigious St. Anne’s square In Manchester where as in act one Willie said that he had no other plans to work at another shop, he just intended on working as a boot maker for the rest of his life.
By act four Willie has now become more confident thanks to Maggie which relates to the fact where Brighouse says that behind every successful businessman there’s a woman that made him, in this case the successful business man is Willie and the woman is Maggie. Maggie was the one who kept pushing Willie and who eventually unlocked Willies true inner character.
Willie has made these changes just for Maggie because he loves her and wants to show her that he can be successful instead of an underpaid boot maker. He wants Maggie to be proud of him and for her sisters to respect him. If Willie can provide for Maggie and give her what she needs then Maggie will be happy which will result in Willie being happy.
To the audience Willie appeared as quite a comic character who we couldn’t really take seriously in the first few acts. This was reflected in his language. His language started off very vague which made him appear to the audience as not such an important character; it also portrayed him to be a shy and timid. Now in act 4, is language represents his development and how much he has changed. He now uses words such as “sleeping partner” which is generally a technical term in the world of business.
In my opinion Willie is now a completely changed man but has become a better person. With his new found confidence he has unleashed the real Willie and has been able to become a successful business man and accomplish all his dreams. Willie is now a powerful character who I think Hobson aims for us to look up to.