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I'm Laura. I am female, 31, a gamer, a bookworm, a knitter, a spinner, a tatter, pierced, tattooed, musical, vehemently geeky and occasionally ineptly artistic.

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They were Deathly, all right.


Posted at 22 Jul 2007 10:36:15 PM

Obligatory warning:
If you haven't finished Deathly Hallows yet and are pathetically spoiler-phobic, this is not the place to be.

Edit: now, with additional snark!


.....

So, my very good friend and fast reader Liz gave me the run-down (actually a very thorough synopsis) on HP&tDH tonight.

What the hell,people? I mean, I knew she was a hack, and that she'd written herself into a corner where literary integrity dictated that Harry kicks the bucket and the fangirls would exhaust the world's surplus supply of kleenex if he did, but I didn't think she was that bad. Are there no editors left on this planet with the guts to say "Sorry J. K, but this sucks donkey balls with marinara sauce on top*"?


They all live happily ever after. The good guys are all angels, the bad guys are all evil, everyone lives happily ever after and goes home to get married and have lots of little children, all of whom are coincidentally named Deux Ex Machina Potter and Plot Hole Weasley.

That makes me sick.

Happily ever after is bad, bad enough by itself, but.. *cough* ALBUS SEVERUS POTTER? And also, naming your kids after your dead parents? How fucking creepy is that? "James! Don't you dare stuff that PB&J sandwich in the VCR and *sob* how could you leave me like that???!"

*twitch*


ETA: For anyone keeping track, yes, I do believe that the only good way to end that series was: Harry dies, Voldemort also dies, Snape... probably survives, McGonagall survives, Gandalf Dumbledore dies, Ron and Hermione live, but not really happily ever after. Hagrid would probably be sadder and wiser, and end up a darned good professor after all. Ginny ... was too young for me to care about when I stopped reading the books, so I have no real interest in what happens to her. Sorry kid, them's the breaks.

This was a story which was carried by the supporting cast. She writes great characters, and it's easy to start caring about them. You WANT them to stay true to themselves, even when the book is almost over.

My problem with everyone pairing off and L.H.E.A. is partially that you don't just get out of that unscathed. Yes, I know that Hermione was tortured and Harry out-and-out died, but ... I have the same problem with that as I do with the Star Trek: TNG episode where Picard was tortured for 4(?) months, got rescued, grabbed a hot shower and a cup of tea and was back on the bridge within an hour. No aftereffects, no lingering mental issues, no self-doubt at all. Just the ol' Picard tug and "Good job, Number One."

It doesn't work that way.

That episode was a brilliant showcase of the strength of the character which Patrick Stewart created up until that moment (I blame the writers), and should have been a brilliant showcase of the strength of Rowling's. But it wasn't.

Let me put this in Lord of the Rings terms, which is quite safe because it in no way influenced the Harry Potter story. Clearly. *cough.* Going further, I will put in LotR terms without the Happy Ending that swooped in on eagles' wings and carried Our Heroes off to happy and quiet obscurity.

After a shakedown of the magical world like that final battle must have been, stuff doesn't just go back to normal, and the hero doesn't go live in happy and quiet obscurity. You probably, in fact, spend a good chunk of the rest of your life sorting out and fixing all the little problems and power struggles which will inevitably crop up. Aragorn doesn't get to marry the battle maiden who's been by his side and L.H.E.A. gallivanting about the woods as Strider, he gets a war-ravaged kingdom, a practically battlefield wedding to the pretty and occasionally powerful but mostly useless princess, and to spend the rest of his life trying to rebuild a kingdom.

It's similar to how, at the end of the Belgariad, Belgarath tells Garion not to get too comfortable with the idea of a hot meal and a soft bed at the end of the day as he'll probably be spending much of the rest of his life in a suit of armor and the saddle.

I also give The Slate's post-HP article some credit. The author pointed out that due to the hide-and-seek nature of the majority of the book, a lot of the supporting characters really didn't get their stories resolved to everyone's satisfaction. And a solid 100-150 pages' worth of Ron and Hermione whining back and forth at one another while searching for Horcruxes makes for neither entertainment nor sexual tension. Cut the crap about trying to re-establish an already pretty damn well established relationship, and in return, give Snape his due. He was one of your only really well-written characters, and the most he got was a postmortem flashback?

And with that, I'm done. The earlier edit of this entry stated that I was glad I'd gotten out of the emotional attachment to the series, and all that was left for me was to sit back and watch the snark. And then I thought about it, and realized that if I really didn't care, why was I so upset by the ending? In fact, that's probably quite a bit of what bugs me - she was good enough that I'm still very attached to the characters, but she wasn't quite good enough to make it out alive. And it's disappointing.

There's an adage which says that an author can't write a character smarter than they are, which I think is true. She started a great story, but wasn't good enough to really do it justice. And what I'd love to see is for someone to take this story and rewrite it (I'm looking at you, Phillip Pullman!).

It could be done. Hundreds of fanfic authors have done and are doing just that as I write. Chances are good that I'll find one whose story I agree with (Liz mentioned one which sounds promising) and that one will, for me, become the real ending to the story. Heavens know that Pirate Vindaloo, with or without the slash, is for me the real ending to Pirates of the Caribbean.


*A phrase which I am overusing just a wee bit lately, but I do love it so. ?.

Edit again: This says it all better than I ever could. Seriously, I laughed 'til I cried.

Edit yet a third time omg: mightygodking got suspended, which is made of fail. Here, have a google cache copy which I handily saved: click here for fun!

Tagged as: hp snark


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