The exciting conclusion to a VERY bloody play. Prepare yourself for lots of death.
Lucius sits outside of Rome poised to take it for himself. He received many letters from the people of Rome hate Saturninus. The Goths are apparently very fickle and have turned against Tamora, their former queen, to join with the son of the man that was slaughtering them not that long ago.
A second Goth comes up with a prisoner he found in a ruined monastery, Aaron and his child. He explains that the child is Tamora’s illegitimate son, or so he overheard Aaron telling the child. Lucius is obviously overjoyed to know this news and prepares to hang Aaron and his son right then and there.
Aaron explains that he knows a lot of secrets that he will share if Lucius swears to spare the child. After some back and forth, Lucius swears and Aaron explains that the child is Tamora’s an it was her sons that killed Bassianus and raped and disfigured Lavinia. Then, Aaron explains his role in the whole plot. First, writing the letter and burying the gold that condemned Lucius’ brother. Then, tricking Titus into cutting off his own hand. Lucius and the Goths question how Aaron can be so remorseless. He pretty much says because he’s dark-skinned and therefore evil. Plus, he’s apparently done much worse. Lucius decides hanging is too good a death for Aaron.
Next, Aemilius comes in to ask Lucius for a parley with the emperor at Titus’ house. Lucius agrees.
Tamora has decided to throw all her chips into the “Titus is super crazy basket” and trick him by disguising herself as Revenge come to help him. They knock on Titus’ door. He’s mad because they interrupted his plotting. He’s also mad because he can clearly see it’s Tamora and her two sons. She explains that she is not Tamora, but Revenge come to help him against those who rape and murder. Titus says that if she’s really Revenge, she’ll stab Rape and Murder who stand beside her. Since she’s not about to stab her own sons, she explains that they are her ministers and kill those who rape and murder. Titus points out that they look an awful lot like Tamora’s sons, but he’ll come down anyway. Tamora is confident he believes their ruse and lays out her plan to scatter the Goths at the banquet.
Titus comes outside and welcomes his new allies, remarking again on how much they look like the Queen and her sons. He shrugs that aside and they ask him what he would like them to do. He tells them to look for people that look exactly like them and kill. Tamora proposes that he invite his son to a banquet and she would deliver all of his foes to him. Titus immediately sends Marcus out to deliver the message to Lucius.
Tamora prepare to leave with her sons, but Titus insists that her sons stay. She discusses it with her sons and decide it’s safe because Titus is crazy and they will be able to easily humor him. Titus, in an aside, explains that he’s not as dumb as they think he is and they are falling right into his trap.
Once Tamora leaves, Titus calls forth Publius, Caius, and Valentine to seize the two men. They cry out that they are Tamora’s sons, but they are quickly gagged. Titus recalls their crimes and explains that he will slice their throat while Lavinia collects their blood in a basin. Then, he will use their blood and bones and heads to make a pastie that he will feed to their mother. As they bleed out, he explains his plan again, just in case the audience missed it.
Lucius enters his father’s house and asks Marcus to conceal Aaron until it is time to ambush the empress. The emperor walks in and starts to exchange petty insults with Lucius. Marcus tells them to shut up and sit down, it’s time for dinner.
Titus busts in dressed like a cook because he is the host and made the dinner super special just for the emperor. Saturninus doesn’t find this even a little suspicious and thanks Titus for hosting. Titus then poses a hypothetical: was the father, Virginius, correct to kill his own daughter after she was raped. Saturninus says it was because no woman should survive that shame and constantly revive the sorrow. This seems legit to Titus, so he promptly kills Lavinia.
Saturninus reacts as one would expect and Titus explains that Lavinia was raped. Saturninus asks who did it. Titus asks him to start eating and then explains that it was Chiron and Demetrius. Saturninus tells him to bring them before him. Titus tells him that they’re already there…in the pies…that Tamora just ate. Then he kills Tamora. Saturninus kills Titus and Lucius kills Saturninus. And yes, it happens just that fast.
After “a great tumult,” Marcus goes out on the balcony to address Rome. In a very lengthy speech, he explains that Rome is broken and Lucius will have to tell the tale because Marcus is too emotional to speak. Lucius provides a concise summary of the play with a small detour into self-praise. Then, Marcus trots out Aaron’s son and explains that he is also Tamora’s illegitimate son. Also, Aaron was the architect behind pretty much everything. He then asks Rome to judge what was done to avenge these wrongs, and if found wanting that Lucius and Marcus would fall.
The Romans decide they’re cool with how Lucius handled everything and declare him emperor. They go to seize Aaron so he can be judged and punished. Then, Marcus, Lucius, and young Lucius say goodbye to Andronicus. Aaron is presented to Lucius, who decides that Aaron should be buried up to his chest and left to starve, and if anyone helped him they would also be executed. Aaron repents for any good deed he ever did because he’s evil. Lucius orders Titus and Lavinia to be buried with all pomp and circumstance, but Tamora to get disposed of like a beast. Lucius hopes that nothing like this will ever ruin Rome again.
Time to hug my kitty and go read something happy now.