Medea is an epic tale of a struggle between two characters, an opportunistic, deceitful man and a barbaric sorceress, opposed by gender and capabilities. As such, this play highlights the importance of Medea's character through interpretation of these apparently "contrasting" characteristics within her foil, Jason. However, suppose for a moment the notion that these major characters do not always provide a sufficient and "true" foil as the play suggests. Suppose that when it comes down to approaching their struggle, the foil then, may become blurry allowing for a possible misjudgment of character.
The tragic play Medea establishes many contrasting characteristics of the two most influential characters, Medea and Jason. These contrasts, mainly of gender stereotypes within the play, emphasize the idea that Jason is the ideal husband of reason and logic, while Medea possesses traits of preposterous behaviour and is oblivious to the expectations of a civilized world. Women of Corinth were expected to be obedient for "Obedience - and in marriage that's the saving thing, when a wife obediently accepts her husbands will" (Euripides 17). As a foreign woman, coming to Corinth, Medea is exposed to new laws and customs different from her own, she states that she "needs the skill of magic, to find out what her home could not teach her, how to treat men whose bed she shares"(24). This quotation illustrates the fear that may be embedded in Medea while she tries to adapt to her new home in order to please her husband Jason, a man of order. On the other hand, the expectations of men in Corinth were quite different. For men, there were no laws pertaining to the idea that men must remain loyal and sincere to their wives. In fact, when a man grew tired of his company at home, "he could go out and find a cure for tediousness"(24), whether this satisfaction for boredom involved a mistress or a concubine.