Fan Focus: Eric – November 3, 2002

Age 14 – Pennsylvania, USA

My name is Eric Scull and I’m 14 years old. I’d first like to say how much I love the “Harry Potter” series along with everything else that goes with it. During the time I’ve been a fan, which (surprisingly perhaps) wasn’t since ’97 when Sorcerer’s, or, Philosopher’s Stone came out. I live in Reading, Pennsylvania and currently own the paperback box sets for both the American books and the actual United Kingdom books: the ones JK actually wrote, without being edited for grammar or content.

I also have typed the first three books onto the computer so I can read them whenever I wish. I’ve also drawn up the header pics for all of the chapter headers of the USA books, and in color too.

(Note from Emerson: To add to his list of eye-popping feats, he has also created his version of the Harry Potter cover font. Wow.)

MuggleNet (Emerson): How and when did you get into Harry Potter?

I’m saving most of the story for the “interesting hp story to share” at the end of this application, but mostly it was the movie that did it. That wasn’t too long ago, either. I haven’t been a fan nearly as long as everybody else. I used to not even care about HP, which I can’t see myself doing in a million years. But, after seeing the movie, I had realized what potential the books had, and from that moment on, Bang. It was like a disarming charm sent my way, which may sound cheesy but is true.

Which Harry Potter book is your favorite?

Prisoner of Azkaban is my favorite book, without a doubt. It is the book that doesn’t involve an extraordinary achievement or something in the school’s dark past that has been awakened or even has anything to do with Voldemort coming back, with the exception of Wormtail.

But it sets everything up for future books. You find out so much about Harry’s past and parents, and right up to the end, Sirius Black is on your “to Avada Kedavra” list. The next thing you know, he’s innocent, terribly misunderstood, and even has a sense of humor about things. He’s by far my favorite character as well.

What character can you relate to most?

Hmm…I can pretty much relate to Cedric Diggory. If you think about it, he’s really just a normal and lazy kid, whose parents expect him to do things that he doesn’t really mind doing but would rather not do for use of effort. But, when pressed, he shows courage and kindness right up to the time he dies.

What do you think of the inevitable boy/girl stuff coming in book 5?

I don’t know how JK’s going to do it, I really don’t. Goblet of Fire is preset for the longest book, with 734 pages in the US and 636 in the UK. JoAnne is going to have to write about tons of things: First, Harry will need to return to Hogwarts, or rather, finish his summer. That might have to include him coming home to find that Privet Drive has been reduced to rubble and the Dark Mark is flying high above it.

Second, we’ll need to meet and develop an understanding of Arabella Figg. She might even be the DADA teacher. The way I see it, if I were the most powerful wizard ever and just got back my power after thirteen years, I’d take huge pride in demolishing a few hundred cities. It would seem ludicrous not for Voldemort to do something in the summer. He doesn’t go, “Oooh, Harry went home, dang…There’s always next September…yes, wait until then to do anything…” which is number three on the things she has to do.

Let’s not forget, she also has to tell us what the Order of the Phoenix really is. I mean, we don’t even know if Lupin, Figg, and Fletcher were part of the Order or just some old crowd of something else. It’ll take up even more space for a good plot. She can write everything she needs to, but still not really have a good plot, which is a harder thing to develop than most realize.

Saying she did all that, the sixth thing being the boy/girl setup she’s said to be doing with it would be either strained or short. Most of it, I predict, will end up at the end when Voldemort is held back (if even that). He’d be knocked off course, the world will be saved, and everybody can hug and kiss then.

Who do you think Harry will “hook up” within book 5? What about Ron?

Ron and Hermione will have a bigger role together, I think. They’ll still fight and get mad at each other, have their same as usual personalities, but they won’t be as separated. We saw in four that Ron clearly hated the idea of Hermione being with anybody else, especially somebody who was clearly “better” than he was.

Harry, well…He’s not boyfriend material. Neither is Ron, really…They have their own thing going on, they’re not ready to get girlfriends and be a supportive boyfriend. Can you see Ron and Hermione kissing and holding hands, and buying each other stuff?

Sure, they both do like girls. Ron we saw likes Hermione, and Harry is sort of heading in the direction of Cho and does think she’s very pretty. But with all of the stuff he’s known to do, sneaking around the school in cloaks, reading Marauder’s Maps…He’s not ready to go to Cho’s dormitory, open the door, and say “Honey, I’m home“.

What character do you think will die in book 5?

This is a difficult question, as I’m pretty sure there aren’t any characters I want to die. We should all be able to determine that it won’t be Colin, because with the way JK’s going about this whole thing, somebody big is going to die. She wouldn’t be nice enough to kill Colin. Most of us I can safely say wouldn’t be too disturbed by it. I wouldn’t mind it nearly as much as Cedric’s death, and even that wasn’t the saddest thing.

I think she’s going to kill somebody important, somebody that we have to get in the dark mood about. if Ron popped up dead (which he CAN’T but just as a for instance), we would be trying to jump inside the book and go kill his murderer with the most painful thing we could find or do. We would realize that, “Woah…this is…really happening…It’s death, no more living…no more…anything…” It’ll end up being Hagrid or Lupin. If she killed Black, I would personally go to Edinburgh and egg her house. You guys can come too.

Which school house would you want to be in? Do you think the Sorting Hat would place you in that house?

Everybody’s saying Gryffindor or Slytherin would be their ideal house. Let’s face it, Hufflepuff, or more so Ravenclaw, don’t get much attention, so people don’t really know about those houses as much and you can’t blame them for choosing so. We haven’t found out who the head of Ravenclaw is. Only in Goblet did it say that Sprout was Hufflepuff’s head.

The Sorting hat might of course put me in Gryffindor which would be my ideal spot as it’s the most happening of the lot, but I think that I would end up in one of those existent but not very important houses…Ravenclaw maybe.

Do you have any interesting HP stories to share?

This is the longer story of how I became a fan. As I stated before, it was the movie that got me going. Before the movie, I didn’t have much interest if any in books, or Harry Potter for that matter. I’d just as soon read a Little House on the Prairie book that won seven hundred awards for depressing content.

But seeing the movie, I realized that there was a sort of potential here. It was bestowed in the movie all because of the books…Suddenly I felt this need to read on. I needed to find out if this whole series was really as good as everybody said, and had the same sort of humor and anger as the movie had.

I borrowed the second book from a friend. I read it and loved it. I couldn’t believe how funny and true it was to the first book, while also being its own novel. I read the third book and was further surprised at how great, how spectacular this whole thing was. That happened to be the week that Goblet of Fire came out in paperback. As I hadn’t owned the books so far, I bought the paperback box set and read Goblet. Within a week, I was reciting lines, answering trivia, and visiting all of the sites I could find, including Mugglenet, which seems to be the best fan site out there.

I’ve typed the books onto my computer so I can read them on there now, too…I could read any favorite chapter of the first three books, and after CoS premieres in the theatres, I’ll be working on the Goblet computerization. I’ve also participated but sadly failed to win any of the contests or sweepstakes to win a trip to the US NYC premiere on Nov 13th. But I’ve spent so much time trying to enter, and even that I think should be worth a spot at the premiere…Too bad, though. It hasn’t.

Do you have anything else you’d like to add? Maybe a theory you’ve concocted, a shout-out, praise for yours truly?

I go to the sites a lot and look up the rumors or suggestions that other fans have about the fifth book and the future of HP. The most said, and the most ludicrous thing I read, is that Voldemort is related to Lily or James or had an affair with Lily or something…Or even that Lily is Crookshanks.

Tom is the heir of Slytherin. What on earth would he want with a Muggle like Lily? And would Lily do that? Not the slightest chance! Lily and Crookshanks now, yes of course. It works out perfectly with the fact of Ginger hair and everything…but Crookshanks is a male cat. Unless Lily has some favorite hobby of being another gender than her own or had some most unlucky animagus transfiguration encounter, there really isn’t a way that she is Crookshanks…Come on, that would be sick.

If you haven’t noticed as well, I think that Jo’s going overboard with this whole unregistered Animagus thing. Okay, so Sirius, Lupin, James, and Peter were unregistered. That fit the story perfectly and was the first time we knew anything about it. Goblet had Rita Skeeter. It fit in, for her to be a bug, but I’m starting to lose faith in the Ministry of Magic. I daresay, that’s five witches and wizards that weren’t registered. Another one? They need to change the policy here.

Note from Eric: This profile was the start of my career here at MuggleNet. I’ve been working the Caption Contest for the past 8 months and doing some other things as well. Anyway, people are emailing me and asking me about egging JKR, simply because Sirius Black was killed in OOTP and that’s exactly what I said I’d do four questions up. Staying true, I would still do that if she killed him. However, and this may be blatant, but I don’t believe he’s dead. Nick only said “he would have passed on by now“, but that’s only guessing that Sirius could contact anyone. The scene with Harry and Luna where she says she heard the voices as well, would be seemingly pointless had there not been some hope. Also, apart from some clues regarding the mysterious disappearance of Sirius which I won’t disclose, the only person certain he’s dead is Lupin! And WHO can trust a werewolf?!?! =). Just my way of seeing things, so I will not be egging any time soon. Unless, of course, she kills off Dumbledore next!

Another Note from Eric, post-HBP: …. Yeah, okay… Dumbledore was next. *Sighs* Umm… let’s just hope Harry’s not after him, alright? …=)