The glorious and triumphant return of now-19 year old Blogger, the revival of a once-grand and dare I say influential webspace that produced daily content, and the crippling anxiety of a young woman who no longer has any time or motivation to write, and feels like any ability she had acquired in the past through repetition and sheer will alone is now slowly slipping out of her grasp. Brief history of the Blog and Blogger can be found here.

Here be personal journal entries, observations, slices of life, questions and conclusions, as well as exploration of social and political topics seen through the lens of a Malaysian Muslim, feminist, lesbian, Marxist, and horse enthusiast.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Negative Three (Not Forever)

Spoilers for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. By the way, as an added information, at one point in my life, Harry Potter was the fastest thing I could type, even faster than my name and on occasional bad days, the word I.

"People will be picking up the Harry Potter books for generations to come, but we are the lucky few who can say, ‘We were there.’ We will remember the crazy, late-night madness of book releases and the teeming crowd of fans all over the world gathering in honor of Harry Potter. We will remember watching a book about a boy wizard seduce millions of kids away from their TV sets. We will remember spending countless hours arguing with our friends about Snape’s loyalties and whether Harry would survive the series."
- Emerson Spartz. (s)

The Excluded
  • The Wand, The Stone, The Cloak - I think it was a mistake, given the fact that they took the time to explain the tale in graphic detail (like, literally, graphic) in the first part, to exclude the crux of the Deathly Hallows plot line. Like, the climax of it all. I know the book's more internal, so you can't exactly show Harry being more interested in the Hallows than the Horcruxes, but I wish they had done something to somehow work it in instead of leaving it just hanging in there, focusing only on the wand. Excluding the backstory for the cloak was excusable, I guess.
  • And another thing they left out (but now that I think about it, I understand that it's a hard plot to swallow - I mean, what with the Horcruxes and all, it becomes sort of thick and too much for casual movie-goers) is the whole love sacrifice thing, which I think ruins quite a lot of the ending for me. Like, everything they changed about the final showdown would have been more tolerable if they had mentioned something about the love sacrifice because it's bad enough to not have it in front of other people in the Great Hall, it's a little bit harder to accept without Dumbledore's explanations of the love sacrifice. I thought that, from start to finish, that was what the entire book was really about. It's lovely, the poetry of it all, to have the story start with Lily's sacrifice and end it with Harry's sacrifice for so many people who were willing to fight the good fight.
  • I was pissed that they kept cockblocking Remus and Tonks. Why are you making us not care about them? They were a lovely part of the sixth book, their romance bringing a whole other theme into the books (as well as Fleur and Bill's - I guess they sort of worked that in when Bill first introduced himself to Harry but not enough, I say!).
  • It was quite short so the only other thing I would have added to it, other than the love sacrifice thing, was more backstory on Dumbledore's family (with the inclusion of Grindelwald). However, I loved what the movie did with the scene in the Hog's Head, which I'll get back to later.
The Changed
  • Having the DA rebel to such an extent that they hid away in the Room of Requirement was quite vital to the story, I think, because it proved how too legit to quit the DA was. I guess there wasn't enough time for an explanation? I don't know - they could have just elongated the scene of them walking through Ariana's portrait's tunnel. But then I guess it doesn't make sense with the scene of Harry announcing himself in the Great Hall. Huh. Cause and effect, I guess. Still, though, I hate that they changed this. 
  • Whatever else they changed in The Lost Diadem chapter was okay enough. As usual, marvelous efforts, Evanna. 
  • Why change Fred's death scene, why? It was only right in front of the Room of Requirement.
  • Um. Shrieking Shack, edge of the lake. What's the difference, anyways, so I accept it wholeheartedly. 
  • I actually hated the King's Cross scene because it was odd. And people kept laughing when Dumbledore asked Harry where he thought he was and he replied with King's Cross. Enlighten me on what's so funny about that. But anyways, I don't particularly like it because it lacked so many elements that made the conversation between Harry and Dumbledore truly memorable and of note - love sacrifice and Lily's protection, Grindelwald and Dumbledore - but the fact that some of the lines were true to book was great. I don't know why Harry thought the silver doe was so curious. Wasn't it obvious from the Pensieve memories that Snape was in love with his mother? Or was it that they hadn't discussed that Patronuses could change their forms in the movies? 
  • Romione kiss in front of Harry was better, in my opinion.
  • Like I said, I didn't enjoy the outside, secluded battle scene, mainly because it felt so disconnected from the other fighters. When Harry did something in front of a crowd, it left a different sort of impact. Like, the Triwizard tournament. It would have been disastrous to not have a crowd around after the first and second task. And in turn, it was disastrous to have the HG kiss in a secluded space as opposed to in front of the crowd after Gryffindor's win. It wasn't bad. It wasn't good either, the final duel scene. Kind of anticlimactic, but DH part 2 was terrible at the beginning and at the very end. The middle parts were glorious, but not the start and the finish.
  • LOL, the nineteen years later part. Funniest today when someone up front outright laughed the loudest "ha ha ha" you could possibly imagine when Harry started talking to Al (sorry - force of fanfiction habit) Albus.
The Kudos
  • The scene at the Hog's Head - while lacking - was perfect, because like Harry, it's all right if the audience don't exactly care for Dumbledore's backstory (however amazing and jaw-dropping it is), Harry trusted the man he knew, which basically meant the man that everyone else who watched the movies knew, and that was that. Love the scene. Love Dan's delivery.
  • Also perfection: the scene at the start of the Battle of Hogwarts when McGonagall does the spell she's always wanted to use. The stone guards dropping from up high was spine tingling. And to ruin the moment of tears and outright sobbing was Maggie Smith's perfect delivery of a comedic line.
  • Oh, I forgot to mention: I love that dragon. 
  • The cute fluffy little balls of cotton candy inducing laughter after the Romione kiss!
  • And also, the Room of Requirement scene when he was looking for the diadem, that was especially cool. Throwback to Chamber of Secrets: Cornish Pixies!
  • The Prince's Tale was perfect, start to finish. Whatever flaws it had, doesn't matter AT ALL. It was like tears all over the place and buckets upon buckets of CRIES.
This is more of a kudos to JKR's writing but I've never exactly done a book review of DH before because I didn't have this blog then but two things: I adore the way that Harry saved Draco and, well, Zabini, after everything that they did - after they tried to kill and curse him and Ron and Hermione - whilst Voldemort just killed Snape just like that, after everything Snape's done for him. That particular parallel was one of my favorites and the movie did it great, great justice. And then the fact that Hagrid was the person who carried Harry to Privet Drive on the bike, and he was also the person to carry Harry back to Hogwarts after he "died". That just killed me. I am so humbled to read something like this. And I am so grateful that at the end of the day, the essence of Harry Potter remained intact. Everyone on the crew did a marvelous job - could have done better but with what they have done, I am impressed and I am satisfied. Like, beyond that. And to JKR, who have guided everyone in the process of film-making; she has made the right calls for each and every decision and without her supervision, the movies would be a mess, and without her, period, there would be no movies, so, yes, thank you for everything!

I haven't watched the trailer prior to the first time watching. They showed the trailer before the movie. I wonder why but I am grateful. It was a beautiful, breathtaking trailer. Appropriate for setting the tone, excellent at piquing interest, all around great. And during that, the trailer, and then the WB logo, I just couldn't help but think that I was part of it all. 

Like, seriously, I was. Am. And not a lot of people that I hang out with today (well, no one that I hang out with today) has the privilege of saying that they were a part of it. I honestly just can't at describing everything but everything from the podcasts, the discussions, essays, the forum arguments, Mugglenet (and the other websites but primarily Mugglenet!), all of the secondhand stories I heard about conferences, the lovely YouTube videos from lovelier vloggers, everything and anything, fanfiction and fanart and fanmixes, interviews, chances of interacting with BNFs, learning to play Harry Potter soundtrack songs on the piano, discovering new things through the fandom and its fans, interacting with people from so many different backgrounds, the unofficial books, the RPs, WIZARD ROCK OH MY GOD, everything, just everything. For teaching me to value books and the written word above many far less important things in my life. For teaching me about the power we have within us no matter how old we are and however many times we fall. For helping me learn to type faster. From 2005 until now, I've been a part of this fandom and it's everything to me. The biggest, biggest part of my life thus far.

And I won't cry. I won't. I'm not crying for this "end" because it's just. Well, it is. But how can something end when it's in your life every single day. I had nightmares after the seventh book came out - that communities would become ghost towns and fanfiction archives would shut down, but the exact opposite happened. I cry now, because I remember all the good times, because after all these years, I still resent the fact that I live here and not there with everyone else and while they're off having conferences and going to midnight premieres, I am here, in a country where not many people understand quite what it means to go to a cinema to watch (and not discuss) a movie.

It's "over" for now, so they say, and I'll take a well-deserved rest and a break from fandom for the sake of my studies, but it's not forever. I'll be back soon, better than ever.

"I don’t thank you for my childhood. I thank you for my life." - Em.

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