J.K. Rowling needs to stop messing with Harry Potter - A general STFU J.K. Rowling MegaThread <3

HonestJohn2376

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So you've got this kid who's being bullied and all of a sudden he has an escape from that and as the sorting hat says "wants to prove himself". You can give him a lot of depth from that. Make him an academic tryhard and that's how he gets in with Hermione, make him really sporty and that's how he gets in with the Weasleys, and make him not having any classist pretensions a source of conflict since a solid chunk of Slytherin house is upper middle class. Have Harry be the aspirant side of ambition and cunning, as opposed to "normal" Slytherins who represent the upper crust's hold on wealth and power and their grooming their kids to inherit it.
That would actually be close to Voldemort's stay in Hogwarts. Voldy, being a poor orphan, had to prove himself against an entire house of prejudiced, uppity, middle-class dicks.

We could have had Voldy and Harry start out as ambition-cunning aspirants who came from similar backgrounds and struggled in proving themselves talented wizards but ultimately took very different paths. In this head-cannon, I imagine several factors in play. One is that wizards in Voldy's day were far more prejudiced against muggles than during Harry's day. Combine that with Voldy discovering his father was a "filthy" muggle, and that sets him down a path of darkness. Harry has a "mudblood" for a mother, but at least his mother was magical, and while Slytherins are obviously going to be dicks to Harry about it, at least it won't be as bad.

Second, Harry could have ended up with supportive friends while Voldy only ended up with sycophants leeching his talent. This could be because 1) Harry tries harder to reach across house boundaries, especially the prejudice against Slytherins as bad guys, and 2) the house boundaries are a bit more relaxed than in Voldy's day, making it possible for Harry to succeed in this endeavor. Harry earns the friendship and love of Hermione and Ron through his hard work in sports and academics. Harry has rough patches with Draco at first, but they become frenemies with a certain mutual understanding. Thus, when the Deatheaters tempt Harry to join the dark side, Harry refuses because he has a healthier sense of self and a support group.

tl;dr The Sorting Hat was right; Harry would have done well in Slytherin.
 
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Kari Kamiya

"I beat her up, so I gave her a cuck-cup."
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We could have had Voldy and Harry start out as ambition-cunning aspirants who came from similar backgrounds and struggled in proving themselves talented wizards but ultimately took very different paths.
I thought this was already the case? It might've just been because Harry's a Horcrux so he's kinda like Voldemort anyway, but I could've sworn this was his internal conflict in Chamber of Secrets in that he and Tom Riddle had quite a lot in common and that scared Harry.

But man, what a missed opportunity, indeed. If Rowling was always intending to put him into Gryffindor, she should've played up his darker elements more like she was exploring in Chamber of Secrets with his parseltongue (which started in Sorcerer's Stone anyway). I feel like that got dropped in Prisoner of Azkaban and tried to pick it back up in Goblet of Fire but was already in too deep/was being rushed with that book anyway and just changed her mind.

I think it was stated a few times that Harry might've had an interest in the Dark Arts? Think it was Mad-Eye Moody who brought it up to him, though Lupin might've been the first to bring it up during their tutoring. Still wasn't enough to explore his darker side.
 

melty

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I don't think Harry should have been in Slytherin, but there was a real missed opportunity to redeem any Slytherins at all. It's only in the last book that maybe some of them aren't assholes, kind of.
She should have put Ginny or Luna in Slytherin, or had a small group of Slytherins that are somewhat friendly to the main cast. Instead they're pretty much 100% evil bastards. We're told over and over that it's Not All Slytherins, but it's not really shown except for a really tiny amount of much older characters.
 

Cr1ms0n_&_C10v3r

"A man of many colours despite being only black."
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tl;dr The Sorting Hat was right; Harry would have done well in Slytherin.
I can't remember if this was actually supposed to be because of any aspects of his past or character. I think it might have been because part of Voldemort's soul was in him since he was a Horcrux, which is why he could speak Parseltongue, feel Tom Riddle's emotions etc. But I truly can't remember. Would be more interesting if it were due to his own character.
 

Effluvium

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That would actually be close to Voldemort's stay in Hogwarts. Voldy, being a poor orphan, had to prove himself against an entire house of prejudiced, uppity, middle-class dicks.

We could have had Voldy and Harry start out as ambition-cunning aspirants who came from similar backgrounds and struggled in proving themselves talented wizards but ultimately took very different paths. In this head-cannon, I imagine several factors in play. One is that wizards in Voldy's day were far more prejudiced against muggles than during Harry's day. Combine that with Voldy discovering his father was a "filthy" muggle, and that sets him down a path of darkness. Harry has a "mudblood" for a mother, but at least his mother was magical, and while Slytherins are obviously going to be dicks to Harry about it, at least it won't be as bad.

Second, Harry could have ended up with supportive friends while Voldy only ended up with sycophants leeching his talent. This could be because 1) Harry tries harder to reach across house boundaries, especially the prejudice against Slytherins as bad guys, and 2) the house boundaries are a bit more relaxed than in Voldy's day, making it possible for Harry to succeed in this endeavor. Harry earns the friendship and love of Hermione and Ron through his hard work in sports and academics. Harry has rough patches with Draco at first, but they become frenemies with a certain mutual understanding. Thus, when the Deatheaters tempt Harry to join the dark side, Harry refuses because he has a healthier sense of self and a support group.

tl;dr The Sorting Hat was right; Harry would have done well in Slytherin.
Your scenario reminded me of a really good "what if" story where Harry is sorted into Slytherin. Read it years ago and was very much surprised by how well balanced it was. It showcases a tad more of a personality to Harry and various characters, delves into a mature and realistic brand of storytelling, and portrays how Death Eaters are realistically radicalized.

It isn't, "Lel, stupid mudbloods." It's actually more than that. Much more. It shows how Slytherin students are driven into it by family, peer pressure, and ostracization. In addition, the "good guys" are shown to be ineffective and uncompromising, especially when they are shown to be bigoted in their own way regarding Slytherin and dark magic (Ron is portrayed; from an outsider's perspective, as being prejudiced against them), inadvertently contributing to the problem. Even Sirius isn't exempted, as by reading between the lines, the author doesn't shy away from having him look down on Harry being a Slytherin; his own House.

Voldy, being a poor orphan, had to prove himself against an entire house of prejudiced, uppity, middle-class dicks.
What I find ironic about this is that the Weasleys themselves aren't exactly free from the same brand of being prejudiced, for ironically being a pure blood family.

This has less to do with the fanfic, and more with having gone back and really look into Ron's overall behavior and mindset. He was actually terribly prejudiced against Slytherin and dark wizarding families, proclaiming that they were no good, dastardly snakes who couldn't be trusted.

I guarantee you, if the books was more adult oriented and showcased society more realistically, it would have been less "good vs evil" and more of a "people being flawed" narrative. Sure, there are some genuinely evil bastards who didn't take much to become evil bastards, but those who fashion themselves as being the opposite are easily hypocrites who look down on those they consider "evil".

Why does that feel so terribly familiar?😉
 
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Wilhelm Bittrich

My pronouns: fuck/off
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I know I'm late bringing this up, but seeing these sorts of articles while scrolling through the news cracks me up.
View attachment 1396630
What now?
Yeah, well even after removing that fugly tattoo you're still an ugly tranny cunt.
Hopefully the cultural world can recover from that enormous loss of untalented pompous poofs.
 

Kari Kamiya

"I beat her up, so I gave her a cuck-cup."
True & Honest Fan
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Much more. It shows how Slytherin students are driven into it by family, peer pressure, and ostracization.
I think we had gotten a taste of that with Malfoy. Maybe it was in a fic, or it might've been like a deleted scene or something, but I could've sworn we had gotten a look inside the Malfoy home and it was rather sterile because Draco is not on good terms with Lucius, like they're disengaged with each other. Even his own mother doesn't really talk to him much, she's just off doing her own thing and doesn't show interest in her own son, so he's been trying to please them to be able to take up the name, and in a sense inherit everything the family was known for.

I dunno, I remember how much of a pussy Malfoy was as a first-year (least for the film), so I think he had to "step it up" to make himself a bit more "cooler" than he really is. It's also been a long while, but didn't Harry feel a little sorry for Malfoy when he and Ron took the Polyjuice and got to talk to him a bit in the Slytherin lounge? Especially since it came off that Crabbe and Goyle might not've been the greatest boys to hang around with and not just because they were thickheaded?
 

Effluvium

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I think we had gotten a taste of that with Malfoy. Maybe it was in a fic, or it might've been like a deleted scene or something, but I could've sworn we had gotten a look inside the Malfoy home and it was rather sterile because Draco is not on good terms with Lucius, like they're disengaged with each other. Even his own mother doesn't really talk to him much, she's just off doing her own thing and doesn't show interest in her own son, so he's been trying to please them to be able to take up the name, and in a sense inherit everything the family was known for.

I dunno, I remember how much of a pussy Malfoy was as a first-year (least for the film), so I think he had to "step it up" to make himself a bit more "cooler" than he really is. It's also been a long while, but didn't Harry feel a little sorry for Malfoy when he and Ron took the Polyjuice and got to talk to him a bit in the Slytherin lounge? Especially since it came off that Crabbe and Goyle might not've been the greatest boys to hang around with and not just because they were thickheaded?
It partly has to do with having to prove himself, but also for family pride, his prejudices confirmed; if not outright encouraged, by the very people who are supposed to discourage it. Basically, in such an environment where people are "righteous" and "morally superior", having uncompromising morals and predetermined notions can actually lead to more problems when said righteous people persecute those who are still young and impressionable. McGonagall, if you were to deconstruct her as a character, is one such person when compared to Umbridge. She's the polar opposite, but that doesn't translate to being effectively "good". It perpetuates a cycle where the teacher has already made up their minds in regards to a student(s).

This is shown in the fanfic I provided as someone who's read the canon books. The story offers a more in-depth look into how Slytherin life would be like if it had been more detailed upon by Rowling. Missed opportunity, right there. In addition, Harry, if he wasn't a Gryffindor, would have been given an outsider's perspective of his "friends" and "allies".

Let's just say he doesn't like what he sees.
 

Kurosaki Ichigo

an approaching murder
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Your scenario reminded me of a really good "what if" story where Harry is sorted into Slytherin. Read it years ago and was very much surprised by how well balanced it was. It showcases a tad more of a personality to Harry and various characters, delves into a mature and realistic brand of storytelling, and portrays how Death Eaters are realistically radicalized.

It isn't, "Lel, stupid mudbloods." It's actually more than that. Much more. It shows how Slytherin students are driven into it by family, peer pressure, and ostracization. In addition, the "good guys" are shown to be ineffective and uncompromising, especially when they are shown to be bigoted in their own way regarding Slytherin and dark magic (Ron is portrayed; from an outsider's perspective, as being prejudiced against them), inadvertently contributing to the problem. Even Sirius isn't exempted, as by reading between the lines, the author doesn't shy away from having him look down on Harry being a Slytherin; his own House.


What I find ironic about this is that the Weasleys themselves aren't exactly free from the same brand of being prejudiced, for ironically being a pure blood family.

This has less to do with the fanfic, and more with having gone back and really look into Ron's overall behavior and mindset. He was actually terribly prejudiced against Slytherin and dark wizarding families, proclaiming that they were no good, dastardly snakes who couldn't be trusted.

I guarantee you, if the books was more adult oriented and showcased society more realistically, it would have been less "good vs evil" and more of a "people being flawed" narrative. Sure, there are some genuinely evil bastards who didn't take much to become evil bastards, but those who fashion themselves as being the opposite are easily hypocrites who look down on those they consider "evil".

Why does that feel so terribly familiar?😉
Thanks for the recommendation, I’m really enjoying it so far!
 
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Doctor Placebo

Western education is sin.
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9/11 fucked us up, I think.
I don't really believe that. How much of an effect did 9/11 have on you, personally? Unless you had a relative directly involved in some way, it was probably a day where you watched the news instead of doing your normal school work. Sure, learning about terrorism and violence on a massive scale is heavy, but what about the generation that grew up with the Pearl Harbor attacks? And World War 2 had a far greater impact on individual lives than the War on Terror, because far more men went to war and a lot more sacrifices were made on the home front.

Nah, I don't think 9/11 was what did it. I think it was a lot of far more mundane things that kids experienced and participated in (or didn't when previous generations did) growing up.
 

Dom Cruise

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I don't really believe that. How much of an effect did 9/11 have on you, personally? Unless you had a relative directly involved in some way, it was probably a day where you watched the news instead of doing your normal school work. Sure, learning about terrorism and violence on a massive scale is heavy, but what about the generation that grew up with the Pearl Harbor attacks? And World War 2 had a far greater impact on individual lives than the War on Terror, because far more men went to war and a lot more sacrifices were made on the home front.

Nah, I don't think 9/11 was what did it. I think it was a lot of far more mundane things that kids experienced and participated in (or didn't when previous generations did) growing up.
You've got to try to understand for 90s kids what it felt like to grow up in an idyllic seeming time where it really did seem like humanity was getting it's shit together and a bright new future lay ahead of us and then one day, all of a sudden, out of the blue, bam, in an instant you see that bright, happy future literally going down in flames.

I know for me anyway I kind of "froze" in fall of 2001 and I've never fully moved past that, what I did was heavily turn to video games as a way for escapism, I guess for other kids it was Harry Potter or whatever, a lot of us lag behind in maturity, I'm better than some, but I'm still a pretty immature person for a 30 year old man.

But it wasn't just the event itself, it was also the aftermath, there's unresolved tension to it that still lingers on in some way, you compare it to Pearl Harbor, but the difference is we absolutely fucking wrecked Japan in response and unequivocally achieved a victory, a hard won victory, but a victory nevertheless, we won the war and in the long term Japan was fine.

What did we get instead for 9/11? A war in an unrelated country that went poorly, cost a lot of lives and what did it really achieve? It only made things worse in the middle east, it didn't make anything better and a war that still drags on to this day, when they finally killed Bin Laden a decade later it felt like a bit of a Pyrrhic victory after Iraq and Afghanistan.

Americans wanted another WW2 style victory, instead we got another Vietnam.

In a way the whole human race is flash frozen on September 11th 2001, not just one generation, stuck in that day of violence, we're stuck in violence where for a while we dreamed of something better for this new millennium.

The overall psychic residue from that event is hard to estimate in my opinion, one thing I hate is the way the media played those clips of the towers falling over and over and over and over again, we didn't need that, once was enough, what does that do to a person's psyche to see that violence so many times?
 

Kari Kamiya

"I beat her up, so I gave her a cuck-cup."
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Sure, learning about terrorism and violence on a massive scale is heavy, but what about the generation that grew up with the Pearl Harbor attacks?
Pearl Harbor wasn't broadcast on television and as well didn't have the same number of American deaths that 9/11 had. And while WWII is still considered one of the most horrific wars in modern history, us stupidly naïve Americans didn't know of what was really going on in Europe until soldiers infiltrated the concentration camps and dug up information about what the Nazis were doing under everyone's noses. Vietnam would make for a better comparison given how widely televised it was, especially since it was during the Cold War and everyone was already on pins and needles over the possibility of Russia (and America) nuking everyone.

But I did notice that shows, especially kids' shows, started feeling more serious/heavy-handed during the 2000s compared to the more goofy, optimistic, campy, toy-advertisement cartoons from up to the '90s (when they weren't shoveling environmental messages down our throats). The need for escapism was great then, too, even the movies weren't immune to this. It's probably not a coincidence Order of the Phoenix really took a turn for the dark, especially when compared to Goblet of Fire which came out in 2000, and that's when the books started "growing up" with the audience.
 

AlexJonesGotMePregnant

he put a baby in my butt
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Even as a kid something didn't feel right about Harry getting everything he wanted. I think the most egregious example of that was Gryffindor winning the House Cup in his first year.
It felt like the books presented this exactly for what it was: old homo likes young boy, gives young boy everything he wants. If anything,it shows just how unfair Hogwarts is. If you aren't on harry's side, hogwarts must have sucked ass.
 

Absolutego

End the American Cultural Revolution
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I don't really believe that. How much of an effect did 9/11 have on you, personally? Unless you had a relative directly involved in some way, it was probably a day where you watched the news instead of doing your normal school work. Sure, learning about terrorism and violence on a massive scale is heavy, but what about the generation that grew up with the Pearl Harbor attacks? And World War 2 had a far greater impact on individual lives than the War on Terror, because far more men went to war and a lot more sacrifices were made on the home front.

Nah, I don't think 9/11 was what did it. I think it was a lot of far more mundane things that kids experienced and participated in (or didn't when previous generations did) growing up.
You're probably right. I very much believe the obsession with using it as some kind of quasi-religious text among millennials stems from:
-Scholastic and the education sector pushing it on parents as the primo way to get kids into reading in the computer age
-The movie series being relatively good and kicking off the whole 'interconneced universe' long-form storytelling trend in movies that plagues the industry today
-It was uniquely targeted by the American Evangelical movement as part of their last gasp of relevance.

The combination of all authority figures shouting at them to view the series as important and the designated enemy threatening to take it away from them for religious reasons explains its use as a replacement for religion by so many millennials perfectly.
 

Tasty Tatty

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The Gryffindor/Slytherin drama is better understood when you realise the main target of the books are children who need a less nuanced dichotomy. We adults see more shadows, but children don't. And yes, I know children need to understand that people can have more characteristics than "hero" or "villain", but HP barely touches these subjects because its purpose was never to touch them. It just starts going this way after book 5, because I guess Rowling understood that her audience was growing up and needed more than just "hero kills snake with sword".

Still, you eventually realise that the ones projecting all those things are adults or worst, "young adults" trying to use the books to purgue their own shitty beliefs and project their insecurities.

Now, in other news, Rowling quoted Andrea Dworkin, lmao. It's funny considering how much it contrasts with her giving praise to all the art children are sending to her.

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Pointless Pedant

Waiting in queue for 2b2t
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9/11 fucked us up, I think.
As a British resident, definitely not. Troons and their friends have been screeching like crazy about JK Rowling here recently and people barely think about 9/11 here anymore since its impact on our history was peripheral (leading to the Iraq debacle a couple of years later). By the 20th anniversary it will have largely faded into history. It's just that the internet (specifically Twitter) enabled these people to get their voices out there to scream at JK Rowling, which they couldn't back in the 1990s.
 

Syaoran Li

Oh what a night! Late December back in '63...
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I'm wondering what's going to happen when we finally get to the 20th Anniversary of the movies in 2021.

For good or ill, Harry Potter was one of the biggest cultural touchstones of the Millennials and for the American Millennials, it really kicked off into high gear with the movies back in the 2000's.

Despite being a British series, I noticed the most insufferable "read another book" cringe tends to come from American SJW's and Harry Potter fans the most.

Maybe it's sample bias since I'm an American and see it IRL as well as online, but still.

I do think @Dom Cruise might be onto something with how 9/11 played a major role in the wider collective psyche with American Millennials, and there's also the fact that the old Religious Right was almost entirely an American phenomenon, especially in the late 90's and early 2000's when the books started coming out.
 
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