Saturday, July 16, 2011

I Open At The Close, Part 5: The Remains

"Vitality shows in not only the ability to persist but the ability to start over." - F. Scott Fitzgerald

Honestly, going to see the final Harry Potter movie was not the intense emotional experience I expected and hoped it would be. It was enjoyable, yes, and I did cry a little (The Prince's Tale), but it didn't live up to the expectations set by the tweets of everyone who saw the advanced showing at Leaky Con. And that's fine, really. It's a movie, and it's a movie based off of one of the most emotionally-affecting books I've ever read.

McGonagall, however, was completely awesome.

I don't really feel any different, short of the fact that there isn't anything left to look forward to with unrivaled anticipation. That makes me sad, of course, but I don't feel as if I've lost anything.

Here's a quote from an article I read on NPR yesterday: ‎"If those kids keep buying all things Potter — books, movies, and whatever else they come up with — Harry could go from the 'Boy Who Lived' to the 'Boy Who Lived Forever.'" And he will.

I have a cousin who was born the week Deathly Hallows Part 1 hit theaters. I'll be able to experience the wonder of the series over again with him once he's old enough, as well as with my own eventual children, nieces/nephews, and so on. And my generation will keep Harry Potter as a shared memory-- and what's unique to us is the mixture of pain and joy that comes from waiting with bated breath for the next book to be published. No one else will ever be able to have that.

And that's what makes me saddest: not the fact that it's "over," because it's not, but that future generations won't be able to have what we have had. It's been such an enormous, all-affecting part of my life and the lives of many, many others. And I wish everyone could have that opportunity.

Of course, there will be other fantastic books and other fantastic series, and I will read them and love them. But Harry Potter is my first love, my greatest love, and my longest-lasting love (in terms of books, that is), and it will always hold the place of honor on my shelves, and in my life. 

It's hard not to make an ironic or self-mocking comment after a sappy conclusion like that, but I am being completely sincere.


  1. But future generations will have their own books (hopefully), which seem like the height of literature. And they'll wonder why all these old-timers are making such a fuss about a, admittedly solidly written but nothing extraordinary, series of books. Which is not to say that the Harry Potter phenomenon hasn't been extraordinary, but what has made it so is precisely the reaction of people to it, not the books themselves, so I'm sure the next generation will have something that they get swept away with, although it could be something like British music, Star Wars movies, or *shudder* vampire novels ;)

  2. Wouldn't something have to be extraordinary in some way or another in order for so many people to react in such a huge way?

    Star Wars is still a big thing- I watched and rewatched them with my dad's friend's kids so many times...

    It's hard to know, really, since mass publishing and availability is still a relatively new thing.

  3. Well, I suppose technically yes, but it could be extraordinary in that it provoked an unusual response. I guess what I'm saying is that I think the big difference between HP and similar books is the huge social phenomenon that HP incited. I blame the Catholic Church ;)


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