Good Vs Evil is a core theme in Macbeth. It is evident throughout the play and is shown in most narratives and films. Good versus evil is the conflict between two people, groups, nations etc where one of the forces is clearly doing what is wrong (evil) and the other is trying to prevent them (Good). In most cases, the good side overcome the evil and everyone is better off.
The first example of Good vs Evil we see in Macbeth is the three witches. Witches have always considered to be an evil being throughout history that exercise witchcraft and sorcery. This description is no exception in Macbeth. They inform Macbeth of his glorious future where he will become king. By doing this, they have planted the seeds of Macbeths evil thoughts and ambitions. They see Macbeths future and say “All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of Cawdor! All hail, Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter!”. When Macbeth receives his thane of cawdor title he already has dark thoughts of murdering his king and taking his throne.
Another good example of Good vs Evil in Macbeth is the conversation between Macbeth and Banquo. In this scene, Banquo mentions the witches prophecy to Macbeth. Macbeth then tells Banquo, “If you shall cleave to my consent, when ’tis, It shall make honor for you.” Macbeth is secretly implying that he may become king sooner then expected and if Banquo stays on his side then he will be made powerful. However, Banquo responds honorably saying he will do whatever is asked of him as long as he remains with a clear conscience. It is clear that Banquo will stay faithul to is king and do the right thing.
In Act 3 scene 1, Macbeth commits yet another act of pure evil. He hires mercenaries to assassinate his good friend Banquo and also his son. His reason behind this is that the witches prophesised that Banquo’s children will become king and this makes Macbeth feel threatened. He tell the murderers, “Who wear our health but sickly in his life, Which in his death were perfect.” What he is saying to them is that whilst Banquo and his son are alive, he feels sick and the only cure is to kill them.
In act 4 Macbeth commands the extermination of Macduff’s entire castle. We can see now that Macbeth has officially become an evil character who is driven by an urge to maintain his power. Even defenceless women and children are slain by his command. Macduff is enraged by this act of evil and swears to achieve revenge. At this point it is clear that Macduff represents good and Macbeth represents evil.
In the final act of Macbeth, Macduff and his army reach Macbeth’s castle only to find that Macbeth’s soldiers had deserted him. Macduff duels him eventually defeats him. This shows us how if you are a bad/evil person, your followers will not being willing to fight for you and are more likely to flee when you are at your weakest. This is a perfect example of how evil wont triumph over good.