"Here's much to do with hate, but more with love," Romeo says at the play's beginning, and the dynamics of extreme emotion define the tone of the play (1.1.7). Romeo and Juliet deals in extremes that overlap or transform into each other. The Friar attempts to provide a lone voice of moderation, but he is drowned out by storms of passion and violence. The insults tossed back and forth between the Montagues and Capulets alternate with Romeo and Juliet's loving exchanges of vows.
The language of the play is also highly sexualized, but sexuality is as often discussed in violent terms (in the play's opening scene, for instance) as it is in romantic terms. Violence and death emerge even out of Romeo and Juliet's talk of love. The strength of Romeo and Juliet's passion for each other conjures up the threat of death almost immediately. "If he be married, / my grave is like to be my wedding bed," Juliet says before she learns Romeo's identity (1.5.9). Later she says to Romeo, "I should kill thee with much cherishing" (2.2.27). Romeo and Juliet is marked by an excess of strong emotion that demands resolution – whether in a duel or in a kiss.