Or how JK Rowling finally succeeded in retroactively ruining her own books.
Welcome, my wee readers to the first of many
rants well thought out think pieces on the Wee Blog.
Let us begin, much like Rowling herself, with a boy on a train.
His name is Harry Potter.
Ah, Harry Potter, that mythic golden goose that managed to ensnare both child and adult readers before…well every franchise under the sun was trying to do that. Like many in my generation I spent a good amount of my childhood reading the words of Ms. Rowling, and getting lost in the world she created. Thus, like many of my generation, and let’s face it everyone else, I was ecstatic to hear more tit-bits from the world of Harry Potter. However, I don’t think it took us very long, relatively speaking, to notice a bit of a trend with this new information.
She seemed to be trying to retroactively ruin the Harry Potter books.
We all kind of know where it started – with the revelation of Dumbledore’s sexuality. But don’t get me wrong, Dumbledore being gay wasn’t the problem – it was the fact that she chose to reveal it retroactively on Twitter. Why would you do that? Why not just put it in the books to begin with – I mean it doesn’t have to be the focus since its Harry’s story, but it would have been really good to have that representation in the books. To have the leader of the Light be an out and proud Gay man, would have really added something to the story JK Rowling was trying to tell. But okay…guess we’re just going to put it on social media and collect the praise without doing any of the work for actual inclusion.
Still, that revelation didn’t ruin the books themselves per say, but it did cast a shadow of doubt on the author. Was she really as progressive as she made herself out to be? Or was she just playing the part to court the favor of both the LGBT community and the homophobes? And if so, could we continue to like her books even if she turned out to be a terrible, terrible person? Could we separate Harry Potter from his Author? It’s a questions fans of works written by writers who turn out to be human garbage, have asked themselves since the beginning of the written word. In the end I think it’s a personal choice – and I very much doubt that ‘the Dumbledore is Gay’ revelation ruined the Harry Potter books for many people. After all, it didn’t exactly prove JK Rowling was an awful person, just maybe a little thoughtless in her actions sometimes.
The Next strike – or at least the next strike I remember – came in the form of supplementary material from the site Pottermore (a site I’ve never quite understood the appeal of myself, but many people seem to like so I’ll leave it be). In preparation for her new Fantastic Beast Films, Rowling released a series of short stories detailing the history of magic/wizards in North America and… oh boy, was it a racist slock. I’m not entirely sure which was worse, the fact that she had written the Navajo Skinwalkers into her text as misunderstood Animagi; or that when she was confronted by Native American readers, she declined to respond and instead let her more rabid fans do the answering. No, no, I’m being unfair…both actions can be awful.
So where does this leave us? Do I think JK Rowling is actually racist – a bit, but probably not consciously; she’s more likely just very, very lazy in her research. Or, and I like this idea the most, this is just another step in her dastardly plan to ruin the Harry Potter series. Think about it, would you really want to read the books of a racist? I know I wouldn’t. Still Harry Potter is such a well written, if slightly flawed in sections, work that even if JK Rowling does turn out to be a terrible person and not just a very, very daft one – it isn’t a difficult thing to separate her from the work. You can still enjoy the books and the films, even if you dislike the author.
It’s what I had to do when Rowling stuck her ‘terribly large nose’ into Scotland’s business – and then refused to talk about it like an adult. Still that was back in 2014 and I can be an adult, who cares if she described the SNP as Deatheaters, and the head of Scotland’s Labour branch – one of the leaders of the ‘No Thanks’ Campaign – as a ‘good little Gryffindor’. It’s not as if it was an important political situation, that would affect the lives of almost everyone in Briton and deserved to be treated as such…oh wait.
Anyway, the point I was trying to make before that trip down painful memory lane was, that all these mistakes – and there have been many more that I haven’t mentioned here – all lead to one solid explanation:
She’s doing it deliberately.
She wants to ruin the Harry Potter series for us.
By now you must be thinking, Wee Lassie, how have you come to this ridiculous conclusion? When there are so many more sensible ones on offer: maybe she’s just not very good at Twitter, maybe she’s just lazy, or maybe she’s just a terrible person. All excellent well thought out conclusions, my wee Readers, but all proven wrong by one new fact about the wizarding world that Rowling released relatively recently at time of writing.
Before they had toilets, Wizards would shit themselves and then just magic it away.
This has ruined Harry Potter for me…I will never again be able to take any books or films set in the wizarding world seriously. And I cannot believe that an author who wrote something so profound as the Harry Potter books, could reveal something that stupid about her own world with sincerity…ergo… this must be a deliberate campaign to sabotage her past success.
Now, why would she do that? Possibly because none of her other forays into writing have been as universally loved as Harry Potter – pigeonholing her as only the writer of Harry Potter in the public’s eyes, instead of a successful author in her own right. Perhaps she’s simply trolling us for the giggles. Or maybe I’m just seeing conspiracies where there’s really only a shitty person.
What do you think?
If you enjoyed this little foray into the frightening world of my mind, check me out on Twitter or click the follow button on my Wee blog if you haven’t already.
Until next time, my wee readers, farewell and have a bonny night.