Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Harry Potter Countdown!

Kayleigh at Nylon Admiral is anxiously awaiting the last Harry Potter film like the rest of us, but she's actually doing something about it. Every week until the movie comes out, she'll be discussing a different aspect of the series in her Harry Potter Countdown. Anyone is welcome to join, so head on over there and check it out.

This week she's discussing favorite characters. Here's my list, in no particular order:

1) Severus Snape

I'm pretty sure that not a week has gone by in the last few months that I've been blogging that I haven't mentioned how much I like Snape. Even though he's a miserable bastard with a grudge who made poor lifestyle choices as a teenager, Snape is, and always will be, my favorite Harry Potter character. He's a multi-faceted guy with a painful history who spends his whole life trying to make up for his biggest mistake: allowing the woman he loved to die. While I'm really NOT a fan of Snape/Lilly, I think that his devotion, although bordering on crazyobsessivestalker, is touching and adds to a character that I identified with since practically the beginning of the series.

2) Lucius Malfoy

I'm a villain fanatic, especially when those villains are cold and calculating rather than screaming psychopaths. Lucius fits that bill to a "t." He's calm, snobby, quietly angry, and, in the end, he puts being a father before being a genocidal maniac. Malfoy's history with Snape always intrigued me and I wish that Rowling had gotten into their relationship better. I always felt that Snape was like the obnoxious little brother, tagging along everywhere with Lucius, trying to fit in. If Rowling ever gets around to doing prequels about the first war against Voldemort (and I sincerely hope that she does), I'm hoping that she'll delve into the Death Eaters more than she did in the original series because, quite frankly, I find a lot of them more interesting than some of the Order of the Phoenix characters.

3) Sirius Black

Sirius Black is my second-favorite character, getting beaten out only by Snivellus...I mean Severus. As my favorite Marauder, Sirius stood out from the moment he was introduced in Prisoner of Azkaban. I wanted to know more about him and I was hopeful that he'd become a permanent fixture in the series. And then she fracking killed him. Thanks, Rowling. Thanks a lot. Harry's godfather had his faults but he was, at heart, a good man. His real issue was being falsely imprisoned in Azkaban at such a young age, which stunted his emotional growth, leading to him acting childish and not quite being able to live fully in the present. He was always thinking of the good old days and never came to grips with the fact that Harry and James were two very different people. I'm not ashamed to admit that I cried for a full hour after finishing Order of the Phoenix. I had really been looking forward to Harry (and Sirius) getting some stability and closure in their lives. But, alas, it was not meant to be.

4) Neville Longbottom

It's been said that when Chuck Norris goes to sleep at night, he checks under his bed for Neville Longbottom. Chubby, frightened Neville started out on the wrong foot at Hogwarts. He was teased by the Slytherins, got full-on body bound by Hermione, and managed to help (alleged) psychopathic criminal Sirius Black into Gryffindor common room. Throughout the series, however, he grew as a character, as a person, and as a wizard. By book seven, he had learned how to take care of himself and was standing up for what he knew in his heart to be right. He even got his grandmother to respect him...and that's no easy task. To top it all off, Neville pulled the Sword of Gryffindor out of the Sorting Hat and used it to kill Nagini, one of Voldemort's horcruxes. Neville Longbottom is a B.A.M.F.

5) Luna Lovegood

As Hogwarts' resident conspiracy theorist, Luna Lovegood is a bit eccentric for some of the students. But for readers, she's an lovable oddity who tends to have her finger on the pulse of exactly what's happening around her. Despite being flighty, Luna's no idiot; she simply looks at the world through a unique lens. Watching this strong young woman face dangers that some of the "bravest" men would quail at is wonderful; watching her develop friendships despite being unpopular is even more so. Luna is the character for anyone, male or female, who has ever felt like the odd one out. She's also really funny, although sometimes she doesn't mean to be.

6) Remus Lupin

My other favorite Marauder, Remus Lupin is the only really good DADA professor that Hogwarts ever had. I guess it kind of makes sense considering that he's a werewolf, but he's also a really smart, kind, caring guy. I'm not too happy about how Rowling changed his character towards the end of the series (what the hell was up with that whole Lupin/Tonks thing?) but for the majority of his tenure as a character, Lupin was the voice of reason and the guy who gave really good advice...even if Harry didn't want to listen to it. I found Lupin's ability to keep his humanity despite transforming into a monster every full moon to be a really interesting take on werewolves and it gave him a depth that was refreshing.

7) Nearly-Headless Nick

Gryffindor's resident ghost, Nearly-Headless Nick, just wants to be respected. It's kind of hard when your death rendered you almost-decapitated, leading the actually-headless to look down on you. Nick is a funny character who didn't show up NEARLY enough in the series. But when he was there, he was always memorable. He also tended to be the ghost that helped solve whatever problem Harry and his friends were having at the time, which made him far more useful than Slytherin's ghost, the Bloody Baron. Although I'm a self-professed Slytherin, I have to admit that Gryffindor gets ten house points for having an awesome ghost.

Honorable Mentions:
-Hermione Granger
-Fred and George Weasley
-Gilderoy Lockhart
-Rubeus Hagrid
-Sybil Trelawney
-Mrs. Weasley
-Oliver Wood
-Draco Malfoy



  1. Poor Nearly Headless Nick, I felt so sorry for him at his Deathday, John Cleese was a great choice for him in the films.

    I completely agree with you about the Lupin/Tonks relationship, that'll be one of the ones I discuss next week, I couldn't stand it.

  2. Your list is great! You hit Snape dead on, exactly the reasons why I love him. Neville, too, because he is my favorite underdog!

  3. Kayleigh: I love John Cleese so I was especially happy to see that he was involved with Harry Potter. Lupin/Tonks was probably one of the worst decisions she ever made. It's right up there with the name choice of Rufus Scrimgeour. That one had me scratching my head, too.

    Kim: Thanks! It took me a long time to warm to Neville, but by the end of the series I wasn't surprised at all that he could hold his own. He'd been through so much and had come out stronger because of it.

  4. OK this is cool... I am so in on this!


    XOXO Angela's Anxious Life

  5. I've lost interest in the whole Harry Potter franchise I'm afarid (I think it started with book 5) but one of my colleagues is as excited as a small child about this. he's also a bit upset that it's coming to an end.

  6. Neville Longbottom has always been a pretty cool character I think.

  7. My anxious life: Kayleigh will be glad to hear that you're on board. :)

    Ellie: I don't know if I could ever lose interest in Harry Potter. It got me through a lot of really crappy stuff and I just got so invested in it, you know? I wasn't too happy with book seven, but I'm really anxious to see the last film. It's like the end of an era.

    Nonners: Agreed.