Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Hallows, Hallows. I'm in a place called vertigo

Huh. That title isn't the best, but, eh. I'm rusty. It's been a while since I've blogged.

It's been a week since we finished reading HP&tDH, so it's (beyond) time that I discuss it, no? I mean, a week is plenty of time for me to accio thoughts. That being said, I'm guaranteeing now that a) they won't be presented in a logical flowing manner and 2) there's most likely not going to be anything uniquely insightful or groundbreaking discussed. But, you know, read it anyway, because it's my POV and I'm asking nicely. :)

I probably don't really need to tag this, but I'm going to anyway, because how often does one get a chance to genuinely use spoiler tags? Also, I have more integrity than the New York Times.
[this was cross posted on the WD]
[begin spoiler for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - highlight to view]
As Steph pointed out in her review (go read it! It's really good!), this book was the most 'human' of them all.
As such, I have complex feelings about the book. Just like I do people I know. There is good and bad in all of us, and there is good and bad in HP&tDH.

One of the things I thought was very well done was the interweaving of all the previous book's occurances. Rather than having a bunch of backstory at the beginning (the 'previously' section that took up a lot of time in all the earlier books), it was worked into the narrative throughout. Clever!

The downside to that, though, was that it seemed like Rowling wanted to tie up *everything* that she'd had in the previous books. Which, um, you know, is good, especially since this was the final installment, but ...I'm not explaining myself very well. Let's see, how to put this? It seemed that some of the callbacks were ...gratuitous? And of course, I can't think of any examples right now, so, just pretend that this whole paragraph never happened. *casts memory charm*

I still find it hilarious that a good portion of the heroes are high school dropouts. Harry, Ron, Hermione (!!!!), Fred, George, Neville... all left Hogwarts prior to graduation.

It bummed me out having Dumbledore's memory tarnished, but it was also a very brave thing of JK Rowling to do. It made him more human, more real, more flawed, and in a lot of ways, more respectable as a result. Although I have qualms about the fact that Dumbledore would be looking for the Deathly Hallows when he had access to the Sorcerer's Stone all along. (And that makes me wonder if he truly did destroy it as he claimed he did at the end of Book 1. [eyebrow])

Deaths. [sigh]

Freakin' Hedwig, man. The two things that upset me about this (other than the death itself) was that Harry & Hedwig didn't end on good terms. Hedwig was pissed at Harry for having kept her cooped up, and they didn't get a chance to make-up. Also, the grieving stage seemed awfully brief. I mean, yeah, there were Death Eaters chasing them, and the Order may have been infiltrated, and nobody knew where half the Order was or who was still alive, but ...dude. She's been your companion for 7 years. Show some respect.

Dobby. Dobby, Dobby, Dobby. [sigh] This death had the right touch to it. The mourning stage was adequete, the death was touching and shocking and ... Freaking Bellatrix, man.
It was interesting, though, that both Dobby & Hedwig were killed by things that were intended to kill Harry, and that both of the characters were as innocent as you can get. There is undoubtedly a lot of symbolism about sacrifice in there that I will leave to smarter folks to analyze. [up]

Fred's death, strangely, didn't really bother me. I think because Amy had predicted it, and I was expecting it.

Tonks and Lupin, however, did. I mean, it was bloody obvious as soon as they asked Harry to be Godfather that they were doomed, but when it happened, my reaction was still, "But they just had a baby!!!"

Snape's death hit me about three days after the book was done. The fact that he looked into Harry's eyes - which were Lily's eyes - as he died simply made me unbelievably sad.

What else?
Weird theories/ideas time:

Umbridge was totally in love with Frank Longbottom.
I mean, if Snape was in love with Lily Potter, then obviously, Dolores must have had some unrequited love as well, no?
Well, I'm sticking with my Umbridge/Longbottom ship until I hear proof otherwise from Ms. Rowling herself.

Also - Dudley? He totally grew up to become the next Dark Lord. I don't care what ANYONE says, or how much canon it goes against. Dudley Dursely eventually performed magic. And eventually, that magic was Dark Magic. And eventually, he began to raise an army of Death Eaters. Oh yes. It happened.

And lastly, wand issues.

1) Why don't wizards have more than one wand? I was trying to think what wands would be analogous to in the Muggle world - cell phones? Pencils? Guns? Car keys? Probably something near all of those, but really, don't you think that a wizard would want a spare wand or two just in case something happened to their main stick?

2) Underage wizards don't need wands to perform magic. So why do older wizards? I *think* it's because the wand helps direct the spell, and therefore acts as a sort of tool that the wizards use. But still, doesn't that mean that a spell *could* be cast without a wand? (It would just be ...diluted, I guess? A curse intended for one person would kinda spread out and might hit the target, might not, and even if it did, it wouldn't be as powerful as if it were cast with a wand in hand.)
That being said... Voldemort's killing curse rebounding makes absolutely no sense. The wand doesn't control the spell. And even if it does, it doesn't control the spell after it's been sent. Guns don't control the bullets that they shoot once they're in the air. So the Avada Kedvra should have, at the very least, have simply not effected Harry. Bouncing off and hitting Tom Riddle is not really plausible. (Also, it makes for a highly tragic book. I said many times that Book 7 would be completley sad if Voldemort died. And lo and behold, he did. [crying])

But, of course, the answer to any inconsistencies is "A wizard did it."
[end spoiler]

Feel free to discuss the book/my thoughts/your thoughts/whatever in the comments. Anyone that has gotten this far, and looks at the comments and expects to NOT be spoiled is asking for a bit much, in my opinion.

1 comment:

Meghan said...

I totally agree with you about Hedwig. Why the chump death? Couldn't she have died valiantly, at least?