Hamlet gears up to be a traditional bloody revenge play – and then it stops. The bulk of the play deals not with Hamlet's ultimately successful vengeance on his father's murderer, but with Hamlet's inner struggle to take action. The play concludes with a bloodbath that's typical of revenge tragedy, but Hamlet's infamous delay sets it apart from anything that's come before it. Hamlet is also notable for the way it weaves together three revenge plots, all of which involve sons seeking vengeance for their fathers' murders. Ultimately, the play calls into question the validity and usefulness of revenge.
In Hamlet, Shakespeare establishes three revenge plots, all of which involve a son seeking vengeance for the death of a father. This allows Shakespeare to create two foils to Hamlet's character – Laertes and Fortinbras both take swift and immediate action that sets off and highlights Hamlet's infamous delay.
The thing that seems to most clearly separate Hamlet from other revenge tragedies is the hero's excessive delay in avenging his loved one's murder.