The play depicts the stupidity, falsity and sham of everyday life. The story is about death, murder, suicide, betrayal and so forth.
The main character, Hamlet, is a reflective and thoughtful young man who is often hesitant and indecisive. This personality attributes to his hamartia, or tragic flaw. Shakespeare further demonstrates this throughout the play with the use of foils. (Heilman 47) Each of these characters has a primary purpose; however in many cases they are there to act as a foil to give Hamlet the opportunity to perform an action or make a decision, and even to expose a flaw in his character.
The ghost of King Hamlet characterizes Gertrude as "my most seeming-virtuous queen"(1.5.53), recognizing that his former wife only pretends to be virtuous. She became an adulteress, and out on only a brief display of mourning after her husband's death before rushing to "incestuous sheets" (1.2.162). In this act, Gertrude allowed herself to become completely corrupted by the serpent, Claudius. The queen upholds her impurity when she knowingly allows Polonius to spy on Hamlet during her personal conversation with him, degrading her respect for her own son, and turning to the path of deception. In nearly all instances, Gertrude allows her actions to be controlled by the king of corruption, Claudius.