His support for Demetrius colors the audience’s point of view of the young lover.
If one supports Lysander, one cannot approve of Demetrius, who initially enters the woods in the role of obstructionist, not lover. Shakespeare links the romantic relationships with male authority and aggressiveness.
derives from the attempt of Lysander and Hermia to remain together while overcoming the “blocking figure” (the adult authority figure who attempts to hinder the love of a young couple).
The overcoming of an obstacle (in this case, Egeus) functions as a common motif in Renaissance comedy.
Hermia on the other hand wants to get married to the lovely Lysander and so they decide to elope rather than hang around. She is desperately seeking his attention and love but does not get it.
By decree, Hermia is supposed to either die or be sent to a nunnery if she does not obey her father’s wish to marry Demetrius. Her desperation first shows when she approaches Hermia and asks her what to do about Demetrius.
The audience must wonder, however, whether Lysander and Hermia, as well as Demetrius and Helena, actually love each other.
While it is the love potion that alters the objects of the men’s affections, one may interpret the juice as a metaphor for lovers’ inconstancy.
Helena is a woman who falls in love with Demetrius (Berington, 2006).
He however has no time for Helena and would rather think of Hermia than bear the sight of Helena.