Which isn't to say I haven't still been reading about the Shakespeare thing, which includes this rather good interview with Tom Hiddleston at The AV Club on the topic of his favourite play, Much Ado, which then strays into the process of acting in Henry V. He's very good here on exactly why Much Ado works so well:
"And I think the reason is that it’s about love. It’s about your last chance. You might have sworn off finding the right person and think, “Love’s not for me. Marriage isn’t for me. I will die a bachelor, or I will die a maid. None of your romance, none of your love poems.” It’s about these two old cynics who are like, “Nah, it’s not going to happen for me.” And it does. I think that’s just very redemptive and sweet. And there’s one extraordinary aspect of the play, which is that when Hero’s chastity is in doubt—it’s called into question because of the plot of Don John—an extraordinary thing happens, which is almost unique in all of Shakespeare, which is the man, Benedick, takes the side of the women in blind faith. So he says to Claudio and Don Pedro, I think, “What you’ve done is appalling. This is an act of brutality.” He doesn’t explicitly say that, but it’s an amazing thing where the leading male character takes the side of the women, and I think it’s, yet again, evidence of Shakespeare’s extraordinary compassion and understanding of human nature."