- Those who think that Harry Potter is for kids, do not read beyond this disclaimer. By the way, all you "sensible and mature" grown ups out there, my 51 yrs old Dad is a huge Harry Potter fan.
- Yes...I too am a Harry Potter fan...so keep that in mind while reading and commenting.
Believe it or deny it...Harry Potter is a phenomenon. A world wide literary, and to a certain extent cinematic, phenomenon. Its something that we...the kids in the late 1990s...have grown up with. There were Harry/Ron/Hermione aspirants in every class, in almost every school! Every second kid wanted to call himself Harry and have two best friends...one, he would pretend, was Ron and the other Hermione. *Sigh* ....such was the craze!
Then suddenly one day the Harry-Ron-Hermione trio of our imagination got faces. Daniel, Rupert and Emma stepped into our life! If the books were best-sellers...the movies were blockbusters.
Ah! Those were the days when we kids used to pre-order HP books and wait in long queues outside bookstores since midnight and follow the countdown ardently to the book's release....there was this craze...everyone wanted to be the first to own the latest Harry Potter book!!
I remember fully well...it was 22nd June...a rainy water-logged Saturday, when Order of the Phoenix released. it was around 8:30pm when i got my copy in hand....and i was jumping up and down with joy. that night i called up every single person i knew to tell them that i had a first edition HP&OP...that too on the very first day! *Sigh*...childhood was so much fun!
And the movies....ah! i remember booking tickets 10 days in advance...Rs.250 at Imax....!!! Harry Potter wallpapers....fan fiction sites...internet merchandise...Daniel/Rupert/Emma searches on Google.... mugglenet.com .....even the official JKRowling website and the Warner Bros HP site.... i kind of meddled with everything HP!! And it was pure fun!
July 21st 2007...the last HP book, Deathly Hallows, was released. That day was a date each HP fan remembers as the day after which they'll never queue up outside bookstores to get their hands on the freshly released HP book... the emotions attached were simple overwhelming. no more theories...no more speculation...no more queues for a HP book...ever again. While reading the Epilogue...many had tears in their eyes....
Ahha...18th November 2010....the first installment of the final movie. suspense...thrill...emotions....at their height...
15th July 2011...the day the final installment of the final movie is scheduled to release. The day the HP saga....finally....finally...ends.
The end of the book series left the readers and fans with the consolation that the movies were still there. there would still be queues outside the ticket counters...one could still speculate over the scenes kept in movie and the parts left out...one could still anticipate much... But on 15th July 2011...it all ends...forever.
Unless of course someone remakes the series!!
So many fantasies this one Fantasy managed to create. One must give credit to Rowling for making us put our thinking caps on and devise theories and keep speculating over whats going to happen next. Rowling inspired kids to dream...she inspired many to write. No matter how improbable our ideas and imagination maybe...there is no harm in putting them in words and presenting them to an audience!
One may question....how on earth does this book have such a huge fan following??
It was because these books connected with the audience...big and small. Kids and adults alike. Kids connect with the fantasy and imagine their own school houses to be those of Hogwarts. Red House easily becomes Griffindor!! A kid can relate to the characters in an unique way. a kid may name the mean sinister teacher, Snape...the purely irritating and law-enforcing teacher becomes Umbridge...while the kind, motherly yet strict disciplinarian teacher becomes McGonagall.
An adult connects to it in a different way...one may simply appreciate the text or the plot. One may even recall his or her leaving-for-college scene while reading about the departure of Hogwarts Express at Platform 9 3/4 at the beginning of each academic year.
Simply put, Rowling has blended fantasy with reality. Much is real in her Fantasy World. The emotions, the conflicts (both inward and outward)...the characters...they are universal...and REAL. Beneath those layers of make-up lies a simple world which is as real as the fact that u are reading this post now.
This was an era...a beautiful one... it made writers out of simple school going kids....it inspired young minds to imagine and dream... it made sure that Good finally did triumph over Evil.
Much has been said and much will be said...by many.... i take it upon myself to oblige you and end this post here.
P.S: i kinda owed Rowling and Potter at least one post!! btw, am really looking forward to the last movie...n yeah...i agree, am getting a bit sentimental about it. never mind....guess all good things have to come to an end. *sigh*
for the ultimate potter maniacs: