"Hamlet has never been a problem to Gertrude, but since the death of the old King and her marriage to Claudius, Hamlet has been moping around in black for months. In that first scene, she finally looses patience with him and there is a terrible anger against him and his behaviour."
"I don’t think she married in haste. She’s quite a weak person and she badly needs somebody to support her. She’s also quite selfish - a little naive, perhaps, and she very much acts on impulse. The love she feels for Claudius is genuine and very physical. She has been drawn to marry him without fully thinking through the implications for Hamlet. His father has obviously adored her but in a very cerebral way and so this is the first time in her married life that she’s been having fun - Claudius has been splashing out on new dresses for her and there has been much carousing. I don’t think she has any idea of what Claudius has done to gain her and the crown, nor do I believe there has been any collusion between them."
"If she were guilty, she might have had a few more lines."
- Judi Dench on Gertrude (Hamlet at The National Theatre 1989)