Tuesday, October 07, 2014

all is not well

So according to this link, author JK Rowling is looking to do more Harry Potter. She tweeted on 10/6 “Cry, foe! Run amok! Fa awry! My want won’t tolerate this nonsense!” which itself is cryptic, but a fan from Reddit came up with the possiblitiy that the tweet could be an anagram, one that “Harry returns! Won’t say any details now! A week off. No comment.” would fit into.

Could this mean that Harry Potter will make a return? Could this mean that JK Rowling might write more books? Could this mean we could see the further adventures of Harry, Hermione, Ron, and my favorite literary redhead Ginny Weasley?

Dear goodness, I hope not. I really hope not.

The seven book Harry Potter saga is not a perfect story… there seems to be some contradiction and senseless actions that occur, born not of an incompetent writer, but more of a unknowing of where the story was going after the first book, “Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone.” It’s now stuff of legend that Rowling wrote the final chapter of the book on a napkin in some coffeehouse in England before she ever was published, and I’m sure she had an overall idea of how the story will flow, with details coming only as she wrote the pages.

But it is a beautiful story. A story of growing up, a story of power, a story of innocence, a story of childhood into adulthood, a story of awesome. It has a beginning. It has an end. It even has an epilogue to show us where they ended up 17 years later, with Harry and Ginny marrying and having three great, if unfortunately named, kids, while Hermione and Ron do their own nuptials.

All is well. That was the ending sentence. Harry Potter touched that scar on his head, the scar that pained him growing up, but hadn’t hurt him at all in 17 years. All was well.

That’s the perfect way to end the story…

But all is not well…

You see, JK Rowling wants to keep coming back to the well.

I didn’t actually have a problem with Rowling spilling a few more secrets… how Neville Longbottom ended up with Hannah Abbott, and he became the Herbology professor… how Hermione went back and finished her final year at Hogwarts, and how Ron and Harry ended up being Aurors… the later happenings of Dean Thomas and Luna Lovegood and a few others that we loved.

Heck, I didn’t even have an issue with her announcement that yes, Dumbledore was gay. I thought it was a stupid decision, not because I’m anti-gay, but because it made no sense to the story itself.

However, last year, it was decided that there would be a movie made from the book “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”. This title is actually a fictional book within the Harry Potter universe, one that is required reading for Harry and the gang, and naturally, it was written into real, physical form, along with “Quidditch Through the Ages” and “The Tales of Beedle the Bard”… each book is about 60 or 70 pages long, because honestly, how much can you glean from a few passing references in the Harry Potter series to make an entire book with?

There is now a “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” movie coming. Part of me thinks this is a terrible idea, worse than the new trend of Young Adult novels being made into films where the final book is made into two movies (see: Hunger Games, The… Series, Harry Potter… Divergent Series… and yes, The Maze Runner has similar plans)… you are stretching 64 pages into a feature length film?

Part of me warms to the idea a little… naturally, it will be set in the Hogwarts/Potter universe, likely with new characters, and because the setting is pre-Potter, it will probably only reference what we know from the books.

But bringing Harry Potter back for new stories? No. No. No.

Before you get all mad and declare that I'm just drinking the Hater-Aid that Pansy Parkenson probably made up in Potions class... I'm a huge Potter fan.  I've read all the books three times each, and am already starting to go through them for a fourth run.  I've written about Potter several times on this very blog, including a post about the final film... an open letter to "Harry Potter & The Half-Blood Prince" screenwriter Steve Kloves about what an abomination that film was... and my fourth post ever, when I didn't know what I was doing (hey?  who said "as opposed to now?") was the feeling you get when you finish one book and can't get the next one... So I'm a fan.  Back to the thought...

JK… it’s done. You’ve said it yourself, that Harry Potter’s tale is told. Anything now, and you run the risk of ruining that legacy (see: Lucas, George) and it will take a mighty miracle to get it back (see: Abrams, JJ). It might be marvelous… it might be a great new series of stories, maybe new characters will be introduced, and I’ll smile as my cute, sweet Ginny Weasley is re-introduced to the timeline and they’ll have great new adventures…

…but do we really want that?

I don't think we do.  I don't think you do.  You may think you do, but I don't think so.  There's no good that could come of it, sullying the Potter memories I have already.  Do we need to hear stories of a 29 year old Harry Potter and a 28 year old Ginny Weasley Potter running around battling bad guys?  Voldemort was the ultimate bad guy, so is Rowling going to give us the son of Voldemort, seeking revenge?  A bad guy worse that Voldemort, which would undermine the ultimate evil that we were told about for seven books? 

Or maybe each book is a one off, with Harry and Ron solving wizard crime, fighting a different bad guy in each book? 

I hate to say this... I really hate to say it... but I think its a power play.  Her other non-Potter novels have done okay, but as expected, none have come close to the soaring heights that the Hogwarts adventures achieved.  Perhaps she realizes that this, and maybe only this, is what will continue the cash flow.  She's already a bajilliontyaire, so I'm not sure it's all about the money--I think it has to do with control.  This is her world, and she can do what she wants.

Which is true.  But JK Rowling, you are in danger of ruining what we love and hold dear.  I can daresay that Harry Potter is no longer yours anymore... he belongs to us.  You have told a brilliant story, a wonderful story, a story that I can't wait for my own son to read, and in 100 years, they will still be reading, but the story of 10 year old Harry Potter to the 17 year old Harry Potter is done.

Create new worlds.  Create new characters with new adventures that tie into the Harry Potter universe.  But do not give us the further adventures of Harry Potter.  Please. 


  1. As with all great book series, the unwritten endings are the best, because they allow each individual to create their own.
    Note to myself: stop the DVD before the final scene in the final 'Arry Potta movie next time. It kills the entire movie.

  2. I agree... you should read my letter to Steve Kloves about "Half Blood Prince"'s movie adaptation... the Harry/Ginny story was completely destroyed. And I agree about the ending of the final film... in the book, it's this brilliant showdown between Voldy and Harry, where everyone sees that Snape was a good guy all along, and where Voldemort is taken out in front of everyone... in the movie? Harry dispatches him. Then walks back to the castle and is all like "Hey guys. I took care of V-dawg. What's up?" Ugh.


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