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Tag Archives: Retrospective

 

Yeah I’m jumping on the band wagon with what appears to be every single other blogger, critic and vid blogger in the western world and half of the rest of it that has internet access and Harry Potter books in their local language. Before I go in to my over all retrospective which could be long or could be short depending on where I go with this let’s start from the obvious spot. A brief look at Harry Potter 7 part 2, the conclusion (goddamn finally) of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Spoiler warning should be obvious but really you’ve probably see in by now, and you should have read the book, so you should already know. Holy shit, FINALLY this is the shit I was craving from my read through of book seven, time to take the gloves off, shake off the training wheels and kick some ass or die trying. FUCK YES, you hear me? Finally we get to see the “adult” wizards of the world mysteriously absent through out the series because of the focus on the kids do some serious magic. It’s fucking worth the wait too. I’m actually feeling a lot better about 7.1 because it means they could make this movie essentially a two hour ass kicking sequence. There’s the usual bout of details you’re only really gonna get if you’ve read through the books but as usual they’re relatively small so just ignore them and enjoy the epicness and go read the books and see if that doesn’t fill in some details for you. The show casing spreads out too the primary support cast from Harry, Ron and Herminone handing out some “action hero moments” including Neville proving that deep down inside under the wuss with the toad he’s quite the bad ass and has potentially seen Braveheart one too many times. (as if that’s actually possible…)  Some poignant death sequences and one of the most loved lines in the series got great emotional responses from me and everyone around me and the special effects managed to keep pace with the sheer scope of what was happening. Fantastic right up to the very end in which we (well everyone who read the book and paid attention to rumors about the movie) learned that the rumors weren’t true and hollywood hadn’t modified the ending. Some people might have prefered a darker ending but you know, fuck them, a fairy tale ending isn’t going to hurt any one and is probably good the one’s mental health now and then.

This leads me to my reaction right after the film and right in to my retrospective, the second the credits hit “I’m freeeeee! At last the curse is ended, freeeeeeee”

Alright, alright it was comedic exaggeration even when I was in the theater but the sense of something big ending at that moment was palpable and for a lot of people in my generation who literally grew up with this series I’ve talked to the sensation was similar. These characters and this story first in book format and then the movies as they started coming out have been with me personally since I was in the fourth grade and passing green inked notes back and forth with my friend and fellow nerd Kristi. Yeah we were lame but we were kids so we were allowed to be lame.

The books followed us though, the characters growing up as we did and the books growing up as we did too, addressing more complex themes, taking on a darker more dramatic tone as time and the story went on. I don’t think a series has gone this long or followed such an arc with a generation before, literally growing with the reader, it’s a first for literature and it’s fascinating to look at the relationship we developed with these characters and this world over the years.

The books had a very strong effect on my reading habits as well, beyond getting me reading even more then I already did (the immortal curse of the nerd it seems) it started me off on the path of all sorts of fantasy literature such as Brian Jacques’s Red Wall series and eventually of course the granddaddy of all fantasy Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings, and eventually Sci-Fi because it tends to share self space with Fantasy. So I suppose I can directly blame Harry Potter for the massive, well read nerd I am today. In which case thanks J.K. I owe you one.

I’d much rather be a nerd and read way too much (which I am and do) then be some of the effective illiterates that so frustrated me in high school and if Harry Potter helped keep me from that particular fate and might be able to help others, I know what book I’m getting my kids a copy of when they get to the right reading level.

It’s interesting to think about where my own story arc has gone since the story started back when I got my hands on my first copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone so many years ago, from a student myself for book 1 and to when book 7 I had just sworn in to the DEP for the United States Marine Corps, waiting for orders to ship in the early spring/late winter of 2008, and now with the movies finally complete and Harry’s story completely told I’m 21, out of the Marines and getting ready to go back to college to start on my road towards a teaching career. It’s been a hell of a ride for me and I’m glad I had these books and characters on my book shelves for it.