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Death wishes, etc. - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Death wishes, etc.


One of the questions confused me, as it started with "Bill is working as a curse breaker in Egypt." Hasn't he been working in England since the beginning of OotP, and dating Fleur? Did I miss him going back to Egypt at the end of HBP?

And, oops, wrong radio button clicked on whether or not there will be another battle at Hogwarts. I apparently hit "no." I definitely meant "yes" on that one.

I predicted that Harry will survive Book 7 in my more logical head, but of course, my paranoia is saying, "Yes, Jo is sick of it all, and will kill him out of annoyance" or "Well, there is a pretty trendy tendency to go for the 'I will accept death,' and she's already hit a couple of those notes with Voldemort refusing to do so..."

Sigh.

I really, honestly don't think it would fit the narrative--Harry doesn't seem to have a problem offering to sacrifice himself, so offering to do so is not any kind of character growth, and it wouldn't address the narrative question at the beginning (he has lost his family, will he regain it?). I think he will, at some point, show willingness to sacrifice himself, as he has in each book, and will most likely appear to be dead for a little while, but ultimately it won't be the case--the classic resurrection of the hero scene (think Kevin Costner emerging from the smoke in the *cough* immortal Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves).

I wouldn't discount the possibility of the "death wish" mentality, though--it seems to be kind of popular--ref, Star Wars: RotS--to say, "See, I ACCEPT DEATH AS PART OF LIFE" as something good and sophisticated. Which it is to some extent, but also really kind of descends into nihilism. (In the case of RotS, someone putting his mortal soul in danger solely, the narrative suggests, because he won't "accept" an oncoming death that no sane person would accept without a fight.)

As to Snape, the Y/N question didn't really capture the various things I'm thinking. I'm still an agnostic and won't be surprised by anything she does, but the more I think about it, the more I'm leaning toward a scenario where Snape really did betray DD in HBP, but Dumbledore was still right to trust him... that Dumbledore knew exactly how far he'd go, but still believed, rightly, that in the end, he would come around to the right side. Which is kind of sad, since it would mean Peter wouldn't get the redemption arc, as you can't do two of them that similar to each other in the course of the same story without risking self-parody. Draco, I think, has already discovered that he's in a really bad place and is less on a redemption track than on an escape track. Narcissa, I could see going to the Order with necessary information on the agreement that they would help get Draco out of there.

The Y/N on a new transfiguration teacher wasn't really a Y/N, either--I think there will be a new teacher (also a new DADA teacher), but we won't really see much of those people, as Harry won't be a student.

Oh, also, the "yeses" on questions of people getting married--R/Hr and G/H, particularly--I don't mean in the course of the regular narrative, like R/Hr getting hitched before the Horcrux hunt. I mean that in the epilogue, we'll find out that they're married.

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trinity_clare From: trinity_clare Date: April 14th, 2007 08:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
"I'm agnostic about Snape" is my new favorite phrase because that's exactly what I am.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 15th, 2007 02:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Sometimes he seems to be on one arc, other times on another. It seems to depend on my mood.
From: maxzook Date: May 12th, 2007 02:53 am (UTC) (Link)

"Is Snape a good guy or a bad guy?"

Every time I walk into Borders and see one of those stupid posters, I want to whip out a pen and write "yes" on it.
cheddartrek From: cheddartrek Date: April 14th, 2007 08:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
I never thought of it before, but it's a really good point, and I can't say how happy I am to have it pointed out to me before I read the book.

"...a scenario where Snape really did betray DD in HBP, but Dumbledore was still right to trust him... that Dumbledore knew exactly how far he'd go, but still believed, rightly, that in the end, he would come around to the right side."

I think Snape will be on the right side in the end, because I have trouble believing that Albus was just THAT wrong about him. At the same time, I have trouble accepting that Snape is fully a good guy, because JKR keeps saying that she just can't see why ANYone would like Snape, and that we'll see why in Book 6/7.

Your scenario would account for both. I don't really know my opinion on the subject of Snape at this point, but I'm pretty sure whatever happens involve something complex.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 15th, 2007 02:43 am (UTC) (Link)
because I have trouble believing that Albus was just THAT wrong about him.

Or that it would be the ultimate ending of a complex relationship with Harry.

But yes, it's important to remember that JKR has repeatedly given warnings that Snape is not likable.
olympe_maxime From: olympe_maxime Date: April 14th, 2007 10:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
I just thought of something yesterday: remember how Jo always said if we knew her religious beliefs then we'd guess the ending of book 7? Add this to the veil (and the curtains on the US cover?) and what do you get?

I think Harry's going to die - properly - and be resurrected. Wonder how she'd pull that off without, I don't know, creating automatic gag reflexes in millions of readers?

(PS: I know how she's always said death is for keeps, but she didn't say nothing about the veil... maybe that's a sort of limbo from which return is possible in only the most extraordinary cases.)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 15th, 2007 12:52 am (UTC) (Link)
I think she means the veil to be death.

Generally, I think the "resurrection" motif will be symbolic, or will be a dangerous kind of magic that protects or brings him back from being very close to death, but not be actual death, because she's made such a point of saying that bringing someone back from the dead is Dark Magic.
miseri From: miseri Date: April 15th, 2007 11:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Maybe that's the point ... someone *does* get resurrected (literally, as opposed to "soul just went into another vessel") not by magic, but by a miracle. That is, it just happens without anyone's active involvement.

(Here's a theory: the real Harry Potter did indeed "die" (sort of) that Halloween night sixteen years ago, and the "Harry" we've all grown to know and love is actually the portion of Voldemort's soul that wasn't completely unscrupulous and evil. The reason Voldemort got blasted that Halloween was that this final division was too much for his soul to take. Once both Harry and Voldemort die, Harry "resurrects" because his actual spiritual self was never involved in this second(?) death.)
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fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 15th, 2007 02:41 am (UTC) (Link)
(Just nixed the duplicate comment.)
From: (Anonymous) Date: April 15th, 2007 02:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Well, I think there's plenty of resurrection symbolism floating around the story what with phoenixes and stuff.

I remember a comic where one character comes walking out of the supposedly unsurvivable fire and another character says, "Hey, there he is!"

To which the hero replies. "No, no, you're supposed to say 'Nobody could survive that inferno. He must be - no, wait. Is that him? No - Yes - It couldn't be - It is! He's alive!'"

At which point, the hero's boss, who told him not to get involved in this fight, says, "Not when I get through with you, you're not!"

Er, right. Back to the point.

Uhm, maybe Peter has a redemption arc that is parody? He realizes Ron was right, he is a better rat than he is a man, and decides to spend the rest of his days bringing happiness to elementary schoolers as their class pet. He even gives up napping and spends extra time running on the metal wheel, because the kids get such a kick out of it.

When faced with the choice of making the final sacrifice, instead of running away, he stays put so little Joey can get his science scholarship, even though it means running mazes and getting his brain dissected.

Or maybe he was going to do that but, instead, leads a group of rat refugees out of the lab, leading to the true origins of all that stuff in "The Secret of NIMH." He changes his name to Nicodemus, also explaining why there was a rat wizard in the movie.

Of course, unbeknownst to him, Voldemort survived, got turned into a rat and changed his name to Jenner . . . .

Ellen
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 15th, 2007 02:44 am (UTC) (Link)
Hah! Peter the rat movie star. I like it.
contrail From: contrail Date: April 15th, 2007 11:21 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm pretty certain Harry won't die. I used to think he might even though I was hoping he wouldn't, but then I saw the US cover and my initial reaction was basically, "Oh, good, Harry isn't going to die." The cover just feels too positive to me for the book to have a sad ending. And I agree with your thoughts about what would fit the narrative.

On the issue of who gets the redemption arc, we need some kind of payoff for the lifedebt situation with Peter and I don't know what other than redemption of some kind for him would be significant enough to work as that payoff. Do you have any thoughts on what would?

As far as Snape goes, my ability to actually care about what happens with him is mostly worn out, to be honest, so I'll probably be fine whatever JKR decides to do with him as long as it doesn't result in Peter's storyarc getting shafted.

- Contrail
mcgonagalls_cat From: mcgonagalls_cat Date: April 16th, 2007 06:21 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm doing the re-read of all the books before I do the re-read of them before DH comes out, and ...

In Stone (Ch.16, pg 270 of Scholastic edition) Harry is getting hyped up to go save the Stone and is shouting at Hermione and Ron that if Snape gets the Stone Voldemort comes back. Then he says, "If I get caught before I can get to the Stone, well, I'll have to go back to the Dursleys and wait for Voldemort to find me there, ***it's only dying a bit later than I would have, because I'm never going over to the Dark Side!***" (emphasis mine)

First, no one was talking about him going over to the Dark Side anywhere in Stone (except the Sorting Hat going back and forth between Slytherin & Gryffindor as proper House) so why bring it up unless it is a clumsy attempt at foreshadowing?

Second, When I first saw the American cover I thought Harry was calling something down and Voldemort was recoiling from it. Now I'm wondering if Harry is working *with* the Dark Lord.

That said, his "resurection" could come from 'seeing the light' and pulling himself out of Voldemort's service through the love aspect Dumbledore keeps reinforcing...or from the sacrifice of someone he loves jarring him out of service to TDL.

GAK! Dark Harry, Gak!


mcgonagalls_cat From: mcgonagalls_cat Date: April 16th, 2007 07:39 am (UTC) (Link)
P.S.

I just remembered another reference to a possible Dark Harry in Stone. His first night in the castle he has a dream he doen't remember where the high voice we later discover to be Voldemort's, is telling him he has to change to Slytherin House because it is his destiny.

Hmmmm.....



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