Mrs. Lovett

Mrs. Lovett

    Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Grew Up… in the squalor of early 19th century London.

Living… in London in 1847. Life is gothically harsh and bleak, with her business slow and in a state of disrepair.

Profession… meat pie shop proprietor and landlord. Mrs. Lovett's pie shop, according to her, serves the "worst pies in London." Predictably, that’s not exactly helping business boom. At least, that’s the case until she discovers a rather macabre solution.

Interests… assisting barber Benjamin Barker (now going by the alias Sweeney Todd) in his revenge against the corrupt Judge Turpin, who exiled him to Australia under false charges in order to rape his wife, Lucy. Todd is told that his wife committed suicide. After Sweeney fails to get his revenge on Turpin in a near miss, he starts killing scores of people in his barbershop above. The bodies fall through a trap door into the pie shop of the complicit Mrs. Lovett, which is directly below Todd’s barber shop. She starts baking parts of the bodies in her pies. Yes, you read that correctly.

Relationship Status… longing for Sweeney, but it seems that her love is unrequited. It's hard to believe one so grim as Sweeney is still capable of love. But that isn’t stopping Mrs. Lovett.

Challenge… trying to keep Sweeney from the truth. Though he was told his wife poisoned herself, she survived and became the beggar woman who frequents around the pie shop. But Mrs. Lovett wants Todd all to herself. Her pie shop has become a hit since she’s added the “secret ingredient” of body parts, and she doesn’t want any rivals for her new hero.

Personality… strange and complicated. She is unbothered by the prospect of killing people, yet not totally without a heart. She is selfish and even vindictive in her “love” for Sweeney, and yet she basically adopts an orphan by the name of Tobias Ragg. But in the end it’s hard to get around the fact that, yes, she bakes dead people in her pies and serves them to the people of London.


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