Fan Focus: Sabrina – August 28, 2011

21-year-old Sabrina from the United States

First off, how did you become a Harry Potter fan?

When I was 10 years old and in 5th grade, everybody was talking about a new book called Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. From what I heard, I thought it was childish and not worth a read. In addition, I wasn’t one to follow the crowd so my obstinacy prevented me from giving the book a chance. One day I was presented Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone as a gift. I scoffed at it and tossed it towards the back of my book shelf. About a month later, I went to a dinner party with my parents. Their friends gave me a present- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. For the sake of politeness, I pretended to be excited but was actually thinking about how pointless it was to have two copies of a book I would never read. The evening dragged on slowly with adult conversation and I got bored. I cast my attention around and absentmindedly flipped to Chapter 1: The Boy Who Lived. Soon I was on chapter two. By the end of the night, 13 chapters in, I was hooked for life. Looking back, I like to consider those two copies of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone similar to Harry’s letters to Hogwarts. He didn’t read the first one and was bombarded with others till he finally did so. Luckily it didn’t take 100 copies of the books being stuffed down my chimney before I finally got the point (although a personal visit from Hagrid would have been awesome)!

Deathly Hallows Part Two!! Loved it? Hated it? Thoughts?

I thought that Deathly Hallows Part 2 was the perfect end to the series. I know a few fans who complained that the movie didn’t incorporate many details from the book. Looking at it practically, in order to do so it would have had to also include background information that the director and writers excluded from previous movies so that viewers who had never read the books would understand the significance. As a die hard fan, I personally would not have minded a 4-5 hour long movie, but that just doesn’t make sense. In terms of the movies, and the movies alone, I thought DH:P2 did a fabulous job in tying together all the loose ends while revving up the audience emotionally and physically. The acting was the best of the series and the movie evoked more audience reactions than all the other six put together.

What were your favorite scenes that were straight from the book?

I thought that the scene where the trio meet Aberforth for the first time and their entrance in the Room of Requirement was very well done and exactly as I imagined it to be while reading. Hogsmeade was portrayed very eerily and the Caterwauling Charm was impeccable. In addition, I liked the King’s Cross scene between Harry and Dumbledore. I could never quite imagine the destroyed part of Voldemort’s soul in my head while reading and thought that the movie did well in portraying it, making a stark contrast between it and the rest of the scene. The pensieve scene from start to finish was in a word, perfect.

What scenes that were changed did you liked? Disliked?

My favorite scene in the movie was the one where Hogwarts is preparing for battle. I wish that the movie had kept to the book version of how Harry defends McGonagall in the Ravenclaw common room against the Carrows but was not displeased with the changes the movie made. I agreed with the idea of having Snape die in the Crystal boathouse instead of the Shrieking Shack as it does romanticize his death and make it more magical. I disliked how they glossed over Fred’s death rather quickly. I expected it to be more emotional and having a greater impact on the audience, almost as much as Dobby’s death from Part 1. That, along with the deaths of Lupin and Tonks disappointed me because I felt it was only right that the fans should ‘pay their respects’ to those wonderful characters.

The WB says they are pushing hard for DH:P2 at The Oscars this year! What do you think Potter deserves to be nominated for, and what do you hope it would win?

I think DH:P2 should definitely be a part of the Oscars this year, especially after the massive profits it brought in- ranking it as number 3 highest grossing film of all time. It excelled in cinematography, special effects and score. It deserves a nomination in all those categories at the very least.

Now that all eight films are out, how to feel about the movie series as a whole? Favorite? Least favorite?

Now that all 8 films have been released, you can bet that I will be watching and re-watching them for years to come. Overall, I like DH:P2 the best in terms of action and emotion. However, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone will always have a special place in my heart. Their youth and innocence on screen reminds me of the time I discovered the world of Harry Potter and there’s nothing like being reintroduced to the magic all over again.

Do you have anything else you’d like to add? Maybe a theory you still believe to be true, a shout-out, praise for yours truly?

Although the series is over in terms of publications and there are no more books to be released, I still feel like there are so many new things to learn from it. Each time I read the books, I discover something I had never thought of before or noticed. Rowling had a real magic with words and to examine the series closely brings me renewed pleasure. Through my years of reading the books, I’ve found more and more layers to the storyline. From the significance of names and plot keys to comparisons to mythology and other works of literature, there is always something different that makes my reading experience new and exciting while retaining comfortable familiarity. To keep myself going with this, I started a blog called Here, I try and maintain new theories and analyses of the books and characters. I would love to have more writers because its enlightening to hear theories from different fans around the world. If anyone is interested in reading some of my observations or contributing their own, I strongly encourage you. With fans like those that make up our Harry Potter fandom, the series will never truly die. MuggleNet has already proved how amazing it can be when we all come together. It’s up to us to encourage each other to see something new in the books every time we read them. There lies the true magic that J.K. Rowling has given to us. It is a gift that we should explore and treasure forever.