The one with the ticking clock was an obvious, (cartoonish) reminder (unnecessary!) of Violetta’s deteriorating condition.
My favorite Violetta was Beverly Sills. Even though she was a bit plump (her nickname was “Bubbles”) she managed to convey the ravages of TB and her last scene was heartbreaking.
Anna Netrebko was more convincingly frail-looking, and we REALLY didn’t need the giant clock. LOL
I saw Bubbles in my very first live operatic experience, which happened in Seattle in 1972. She was in “Lucia.”