Lady Bracknell could probably be labeled the antagonist of the Oscar Wilde's play The Importance of Being Earnest. She is the force standing in the way of Jack and Gwendolen's marriage. As Gwendolen's mother, Lady Bracknell seems to be the deciding factor in her daughter's future (Lord Bracknell is referred to but never appears in the play). When she learns that Jack is interested in marrying her daughter, Lady Bracknell interrogates Jack in an absurd interview that reveals a lot about her character.
Lady Bracknell proves herself to be haughty and arrogant. She is very sure of herself and feels superior to seemingly everyone else and especially to Jack once she finds out he does not know the identity of his parents. She reveals that she very much wants to hold on to her power as a member of the aristocracy when she tells Jack that the common folk should not become educated, as it would be dangerous to the upper class's status. She also demonstrates her snobbery when she looks down upon Jack's London address as on "the unfashionable side." Her advice to him is ridiculous: to find at least one parent as soon as possible. She has no sense of reality and takes herself very seriously (though the audience definitely is laughing at her).
When Lady Bracknell returns in the final act of the play, she learns her nephew Algernon wants to marry Cecily, who Lady Bracknell does not know. However, when she finds out that Cecily is due a huge inheritance from her grandfather, she suddenly sees Cecily as an attractive partner for Algy. This proves that all she really cares about is money, power, and reputation.