The Boy Who Lived & The Wizard Who Was Born
by Randy A.
The fan scrutiny is baffling at times. I sit and read the most over-analytical commentaries about the most obscure and irrelevant details of every book in our beloved series. In the past, I have observed these editorials, thinking, “Will I one day become that raving mad about every aspect of every chapter?”. Well, I have not yet gotten to that point, but I have found myself attempting something equally as bizarre, developing a theory about one aspect of another theory.
At the root of the Changeling Hypothesis topic, all discussion has been in regards to whether it is fact or just fan fiction, and exploration into what doors this could lead to, if true, is almost uncharted territory. Therefore, to actually consider this editorial, without becoming infuriated, we’re going to have to suppose that the Changeling Hypothesis is correct.
So let me state my thesis and get everyone nice and angry: I believe, prior to his first (or was it?) altercation with Voldemort, the one where his parents were murdered, that Harry was a squib.
Still tolerating me? Good, here’s how this works: When Voldemort unintentionally transferred some of his powers and his soul into little Harry, I believe that this gave him not only his fantastic wizarding abilities, but ALL of his wizarding ability. My theory stems from the fact that Harry has no lasting purpose past the seventh book. Harry must either die or become useless, otherwise fans will feel that they are missing out on the fantastic adventures past Hogwarts. And I seriously doubt that JKR is prepared to kill a character that has so much of herself within.
Think about it, Harry has no real prospects for the future, no real destiny beyond Hogwarts, no real purpose besides eliminating Voldemort, and he doesn’t have to be a wizard to hang out with Ron and Hermione (assuming they’re still alive). One of my favorite details is that Harry doesn’t even have his own distinctive wand, it’s basically just Voldemort’s wand. Has anyone seriously questioned this? Just coincidence? Just JKR’s sense of fate? Please, designing a detail like this just to create a “cool” factor is lazy writing. The wand clearly chose Harry because it is attracted to Voldemort’s soul, and if Harry was born a wizard, there would be complications in regards to the fact that a wand was meant for Harry all along, a wand that I doubt would just happen to come from Fawkes.
But I find this theory interesting from both a reader’s and writer’s standpoint. An epic tale such as Harry Potter needs an equally epic climax, and I think JKR would take much delight in surprising the hell out of the mass millions by flipping our world, or rather Harry’s world, upside down. To me, it all makes sense.
Why do we all, when it comes down to it, love these stories? The detail JKR uses in her story enables us to lose ourselves into this magical world because we can actually believe that we are reading about actual places, actual people, and actual events. But the most important key is the fact that Harry, at the beginning of the story, is just a normal boy, nothing special. We follow and learn along with him all the secrets of this world that he has been thrown into, being able to relate and sympathize with Harry to the fullest extent. Wouldn’t it be appropriate then, in the end, once Harry destroys Voldemort and re-acquires his own soul, that he leaves us as a regular boy, or man, rather? We realize that, when it comes down to it, even a normal kid, with nothing special about him, can do extraordinary things. All things must come to an end, and the epic story of magic and wizardry should end for both us and Harry. No loose ends, no longing for knowledge of Harry’s, now normal, future. Nope, we get our sense of finality and are able to continue out lives with, for once, a batch of answers, rather than a barrage of questions.
We love Harry Potter because WE ARE Harry Potter. His life, his struggles, his friends, and his fate are all reflections of what we experience, for if it wasn’t, no one would relate and the story would have been a throwaway. In the end, we are who we were from the beginning, but with more knowledge about the world around us. Life, like Harry’s story, is a glimpse of the strange creation known as the universe.
And besides, do you really want Harry to delve deeper into the wizarding world without us? The jealousy would kill us.