* AlternateCharacterInterpretation - Is Falstaff some kind of [[CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass canny]] MagnificentBastard who [[SecretTestOfCharacter tests Hal]], and is eventually surpassed, or just an old fat drunkard who represents the worst excesses of Hal's youth -- who is eventually outgrown? Does Hal's rejection of Falstaff fall under CrowningMomentOfAwesome, NecessarilyEvil, or KickTheDog? Do Falstaff and Hal even like each other?
* EnsembleDarkhorse - Falstaff. To the point that Creator/OrsonWelles made a whole movie about him, and eventually ''Queen Elizabeth herself'' requested a play just about Falstaff -- ''Theatre/TheMerryWivesOfWindsor''.
* FanonDiscontinuity - Hal's first soliloquy, "I know you all", explains how he's not really a fun-loving rascal--he's just ''pretending'' to be one to make it more dramatic when he decides to get serious. A lot of the commentary on the play begins by carefully explaining why he doesn't really mean what he's saying.
** Of course, if you ''don't'' ignore the soliloquy Hal gives, then he's easily the best chessmaster in Shakespeare.
* MagnificentBastard: Prince John proves himself to be one when he manages to convince a rebel army to disband by telling it's leaders that they will have all of their grievances brought before the King and addressed... [[TooDumbToLive and when they actually believe him]], immediately having them all arrested. He ends the war that has lasted both parts of the play without firing a single arrow.
** As mentioned, Hal can be seen as this depending on whether or not you buy his claim that he is simply playing the fool but really is just biding his time to wait for the right moment to get serious. Depending on the production, the actor could go further and play him as a full-on moustache twirling villain if they so desired, particularly in the scene where he takes the crown from his father mistakenly thinking the King is dead- such a choice would also make his decision to break with Falstaff less about CharacterDevelopment and more a pre-planned, calculated, non-lethal version of YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness.
* OutOfFocus - Close to being a NonIndicativeTitle, the two plays bearing the name of UsefulNotes/HenryTheFourth aren't exactly focused on him but his son, the future Henry V.
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