Falstaff isn't all that funny. He's bombastic, he's a coward, he's drunk most of the time... but in HIV Part 2 he becomes rather pathetic and is eventually humiliated (to the extent that even he can understand). There's something of this in Verdi's opera, except that it ends on an upbeat note. But Shakespeare makes him die offstage in HV and it always brings a lump to my throat.