Friday, December 13, 2019

Some Harry Potter behind the scenes fun

When I say I like The Lord of the Rings, people will sometimes immediately assume I'm some big Sci-Fi/Fantasy fan.  I'm not.  I like LoTR despite the fact that it's fantasy, not because.  Same goes for The Hobbit and the rest of Tolkien's vast universe.  I appreciate the quality and the talent and passion behind it all.

Likewise, I dis on Harry Potter quite a lot, and people sometimes confuse that with some profound dislike for it.  I don't dislike it, though I feel the later books of the series lacked the same charm and quality that the earlier books possessed.  As one of my sons said, Rowling tried to make an epic fictional universe that ended up being too big for her talents to fill.  To me it was like the movie Titanic, not as bad as its harshest critics suggest, but nowhere near deserving the accolades and success it enjoyed.

In the same way, I enjoyed the movies, though their quality tended to diminish along with the books.  Those radfans who insisted Rowling was the holy mother of authors and Potter was the Gospel incarnate, and who blamed directors and Hollywood and evil fundamentalists and bad editors and everything else for the quality problems were just blowing fanboy hot air.  She just hit it big at the dawn of the  global internet era and Harry Potter Org. was the result.  The disparity with her abilities was more to do with market shifts and worldwide consumer base than a fool editor causing her books to be what they became.

Nonetheless, I have fond memories of that whole phenomenon, just as I do The Wiggles and Miss Pattycake and Barney the Dinosaur or everything else that defines my boys' younger days.   That, as well as The Lord of the Rings (and their subsequent delving into all sorts of fantasy RPG sci-fi interests) are, for me, a special part of my life.  I can still remember the final book release and the big midnight HP party at a nearby Barnes and Noble.  My oldest son, who looked a lot like the boy wizard, was quite the conversation piece (I think he enjoyed the attention no matter what he said at the time).  Likewise, when the credits of the last HP movie rolled, I felt a certain sadness that a period in my boys' life had come to a close.   The same feeling I had when Luke beat the crap out of Vader in Return of the Jedi.

But that's the way of things.  So this was a fun little piece to go back and look through.  I'm sure actual fans of the movies (and maybe the books) will have more fun with it.

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