Friday, July 20, 2007

Graduating From Hogwarts

I'll be plugging our late night happy hour fundraiser in a moment, but first I wanted to just offer a quick note about something happening soon that will have a few friends of mine locking themselves in their rooms and unplugging their phones.

Yes, the latest - and final - Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, is almost upon us.

You'll find some very interesting essays on the series and the subject throughout the blogosphere, all of which I recommend (Scott Walters's in particular). I'm not particularly interested in speculating on high or low art in great detail, although I was pleased to hear that, before the first movie, doll, or accessory came out, the most lucrative franchise was based solely on books.

(Not that I'm really upset that they've made movies and merchandise based on the books: I mean, that was just pure inevitability. No one has a multi-billion-dollar enterprise and goes, "Yeah, we're fine where we are." And, more to the point, no company sees a multi-billion-dollar enterprise and thinks, "Nah. Don't want any part of that.")

Much has been speculated on how and why the Harry Potter phenomenon took place, but all one really needs to do to understand it is to pick up a copy of one and start reading: they're immediately engaging and fun (I actually read the longest-to-date, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix in a little over two days).

I'm a late-bloomer fan: I started the series two years ago, when my friend Marsha lent me her books. I very much took to the series like a duck to water. I'm definitely a fan, although I'm not as rabid a fan as some. You could say I'm a rabid Star Wars fan - I really do like that series far beyond reason - and was a rabid Dark Tower fan (I remember panicking when I heard about Stephen King being hit by the truck: "Noooooo!! He's got to get Roland to the Tower!!). I've only seen one of the movies (the third one) and thought it was okay. Eventually I'll get around to checking the other ones out.

Why am I merely a fan, as opposed to a FAAAAAN? No idea. Maybe because I already have my favorite fantasy stories already set within me (I discovered The Chronicles of Narnia and later Sandman far sooner than Hogwarts, so them's just may be the breaks). I don't want to hear any spoilers, but it won't be the end of the world if any leak my way (I had heard the year prior to reading Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince about the death of a very major character and still enjoyed it).

Having said all that, I'm definitely looking forward to reading the final book. Maybe I'll borrow Marsha's copy.

I'm just kidding. She's a sweet girl, but she's also a rabid Potter fan. She'd cut my jugular without a second's hesitation if she saw my mitts edging towards her book.

Anyway, check out what the other folks around the theatresphere are saying. Maybe I'll go check out the latest movie tonight.

All smiles,

James "Sirius" Comtois

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