MYTHTERY: Does J.K. Rowling Regret Pairing Hermione Granger with Ronald Weasley?

Mythtery

J.K. Rowling has revealed in post Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows interviews that Hermione should have ended up with Harry Potter instead of Ronald Weasley.


 Evidence

On February 1, 2014, the Sunday Times published a preview of that month’s Wonderland periodical, which featured an interview with J.K. Rowling conducted by Emma Watson. The Sunday Times‘ headline, “JK admits Hermione should have wed Harry,” was incendiary, and almost instantly upon its publication, the Internet exploded.

This was likely written by Rita Skeeter’s Quick-Quotes-Quill.

The actual text of the interview, beyond the choice snippets that the Sunday Times chose to publish, is still rather concerning for readers who felt certain that Hermione and Ron were meant to be together.

When the topic of conversation reaches Deathly Hallows and the character of Hermione, Rowling first brings up the romantic pairing with Ron Weasley.

I wrote the Hermione/Ron relationship as a form of wish fulfillment. That’s how it was conceived, really. For reasons that have very little to do with literature and far more to do with me clinging to the plot as I first imagined it, Hermione with Ron.

It was a young relationship. I think the attraction itself is plausible but the combative side of it… I’m not sure you could have got over that in an adult relationship, there was too much fundamental incompatibility.

Fandom news websites and readers across the world were stunned at J.K. Rowling’s candid admission that she no longer believed Ron and Hermione would last as a couple.

What follows in the interview is, naturally, a contemplation as to whether Harry would have been a better match for her.

In some ways Hermione and Harry are a better fit and I’ll tell you something very strange. When I wrote Hallows, I felt this quite strongly when I had Hermione and Harry together in the tent! I hadn’t told [Steve] Kloves that and when he wrote the script he felt exactly the same thing at exactly the same point. David [Heyman] and Steve – they felt what I felt when writing it. And actually I liked that scene in the film, because it was articulating something I hadn’t said but I had felt. I think you do feel the ghost of what could have been in that scene.

On this, Emma Watson weighs in on Harry and Hermione’s need to just be kids and have fun, regardless of consequences. The discussion then turns to Ron’s departure in Hallows and Hermione’s loyalty.

Oh, maybe she and Ron will be alright with a bit of counseling. I wonder what happens at wizard marriage counseling? They’ll probably be fine. He needs to work on his self-esteem issues and she needs to work on being a little less critical.

The headline the Sunday Times went with, “JK admits Hermione should have wed Harry,” is a deliberate stretch of facts not supported by the interview – what would now be referred to as “clickbait.” What would have been a more accurate title, although potentially just as concerning, is “Rowling admits Hermione and Ron will not last!”

However, there is not a definitive mention where Rowling says Hermione “should have ended up” with Harry or that they would last longer or that she harbors any regrets (another word that was used in headlines at the time) about the pairing – only that Hermione and Harry shared a tender moment in the tent in Deathly Hallows and Rowling didn’t include it in her book but was relieved when Kloves added it to the film. By calling the Ron/Hermione pairing “wish fulfillment,” Rowling said that her pairing was more arbitrary and less realistic than it might need to be in a real-world setting, but she did not say that Hermione should have done differently.

For Ron/Hermione shippers still deeply concerned about Rowling’s criticisms (this writer included), there is a silver lining in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. The central story in the play’s two parts is the continuing relationship between Harry, Hermione, and Ron as adults, dealing with the exploits of their children. Audiences who have seen the play note in particular that the Hermione and Ron relationship is strong and deeply caring. It would appear that the story, which is authorized by J.K. Rowling, does a better job of exploring what the future for Hermione and Ron looks like than this infamous interview forever embedded in fandom history.

 

– Myth Managed

 

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Eric S.

Eric Scull joined MuggleNet in November of 2002. Since that time he’s presided over a number of sections including name origins and Dear Hogwarts, but none so long as the Crazy Caption Contest, which is recently revived. Eric is a hufflepuff who lives in Chicago and loves the outdoors.