The Muggles’ Oversight
Every fandom in the world will tell you theirs is the best. It has the best story to support, the best characters, the best members. For the Potterheads, our story is Harry Potter.
Now, my friends fall into three categories. A couple are as obsessed as I am. Some don’t like it, and others are indifferent. The latter two have their own fandoms, and that’s fine. Everyone has certain things that appeal to them more than others. All that we, as Potterheads, have ever asked is that you don’t judge our fandom, and we won’t judge yours. Yet, whatever fandom you call home, you can’t deny the complexity of the Harry Potter series.
I was talking with one of my friends who’s indifferent the other day, and he texted me a meme I’m sure most of you are familiar with.
His text read, “Explain 3 and 6.”
No. 3 is obvious to most of us because it wasn’t how the line was spoken in the book. Maybe not a big deal but not the true essence of Dumbledore. Personally I think the full nature of Dumbledore was lost when Richard Harris died, but that’s a topic for another day.
No. 6 is a bit more complicated. I explained that Voldemort’s death was infinitely more complex in the books. He didn’t disintegrate; there was an actual body. The battle was in the Great Hall, and when Voldemort died, his soul was trapped in limbo.
“The entire [final] half hour confused me…They didn’t explain things,” said my friend.
I agreed with him. Many things in the movies were extremely confusing if you hadn’t read the books and couldn’t fill in the missing pieces for yourself. In Deathly Hallows – Part 2, I had to elaborate on where Harry was after he died. The conversation suddenly became very in-depth. We got into a discussion on the Resurrection Stone and why Harry was allowed to return to the world of the living and why Voldemort would never be able to. My friend asked why Harry didn’t return changed as the lost love of the Peverell brother did. Harry died with the Stone whereas the lost love was brought back with it; she was already dead. Since Harry’s soul was pure he was given the option to return or go on, and Voldemort’s soul was so mangled, he would be forever stuck in limbo.
Toward the end of the conversation he said, “Hmmm. Harry Potter is deep.” I responded, “It’s so much more complicated than people give it credit for. Movies don’t do it justice.”
And indeed the movies don’t do the work justice. Behind all the whimsical magic, there are real issues and deep plot lines, and I think sometimes all the important aspects get lost in the “children’s story about a boy wizard.”