Could it be that Gertrude killed herselfgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet : One Thread
If, according to Branagh's production, Gertrude knew of the Kings plans to kill Hamlet during the duel, and she, then, possibly was aware that cap is poisoned, could it be that she killed herself. Maybe she could not live with the guilt after what Hamlet has told her. Does anyone agree?
-- Oren (email@example.com), July 27, 2004
Gertrude's drinking from the poison cup has been interpreted both ways for as long as the play has existed, I think. I've seen it played both ways, as her totally unaware, and as her deliberately drinking the poison.
In the Branagh version, we never see her "knowing" about the plot, so we can only assume it's accidental. At least I think so. She's just being pissy with Claudius at the time, more and more distant from him.
Other productions I've seen, Gertrude overhears Claudius and Laertes, and therefore kills herself deliberately. This is done by showing her nearby, not speaking, but hearing all. Of course this is directorial decision since we're never shown this in the actual play.
-- Sam W (firstname.lastname@example.org), August 07, 2004.