Characters Discussed (Cyclopedia of Literary Characters, Revised Third Edition)
Mr. Dangle, a wealthy Londoner who is stagestruck and brings into his house a constant parade of musicians, actors, critics, and other theatrical types. He is one of the witnesses to the rehearsal of Mr. Puff’s new play.
Mrs. Dangle, Mr. Dangle’s wife, who objects to the stream of theatrical callers who clutter up her house. She discusses the theater and drama with Mr. Sneer, who comes to call, and also rescues her husband from some musicians who cannot speak English but want him to get jobs for them.
Mr. Puff, a playwright as well as a press agent who praises things for a price. He has several categories of “puffs” that he writes in praise of anyone or anything when he is well paid. His play is the one being rehearsed, and he quarrels with the actors and the under-prompter because they have cut his lines and scenes and because the scenery has not been made. Mr. Puff is very proud of his playwriting ability.
Mr. Sneer, Mr. Dangle’s friend, with whom he discusses the theater. He is one of the group who watch the rehearsal of Mr. Puff’s play.
Sir Fretful Plagiary
Sir Fretful Plagiary, a dramatist who cannot stand any kind of criticism of his work. He brushes aside any critical remarks about his new play and holds forth at great length against those who say anything unflattering about his playwriting.