In the beginning of the play, we see insulting behaviour from both Katherina and Petruchio, this is in the form of a ‘sparring match’ with insults.
Petruchio uses various sexual innuendos and normal insults when he is insulting Katherina, for example;
when Petruchio calls Katherina a wasp, she replies with “if I be waspish, best beware my sting”.
Katherina also states that Petruchio doesn’t know where a wasps sting lies, Petruchio says what it is in his tail and Katherina replies with: “in his tongue” and “yours, if you talk of tales, and so farewell”,
to which Petruchio replies with:”what? With my in your tail?, this is a clear sexual innuendo as he is implying that he wants to commit an act of oral sex, this type of insult is much cruder and blunt than Katherina’s smart and indirect comebacks, this is one of the reasons why Petruchios and Katherinas behaviour is not comparable.
Another reason for this is the insulting behaviour Petruchio has in other parts of the play, for example, when katherina and Petruchio are married and they go to petruchios household, Petruchio is rude and bullies the servants over petty things, such as how cooked the meat is, he is also violent and cruel, he repeatedly strikes his servants and forbids katherina from eating and sleeping, this is another reason why petruchios and Katherinas behaviour is not comparable, katherina, although strong minded and independent she is a very reasonable person, she is also noticeably more quiet as the play progresses, speaking only in protest of petruchios behaviour, Petruchio believes that’s Katherina is some ‘wild animal’ to be tamed.