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The other great HP war - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
The other great HP war
Well, I'm going to keep my promise about not dealing with shipping debates--now that I've stated my case, I'm actually not even interested in debating on that--but I've noticed another schism that's quite interesting: Snape vs. the Marauders.

I don't just mean the Pensieve scene, I mean in general.

I'm following pauraque's re-read of Prisoner of Azkaban, and it's also being read by a large number of Snape fans. There seems to be a fairly major difference in perception based on who's "side" you happen to be on.

I, of course, am a Lupin-fangirl. I don't even bother to hide it, and wouldn't want to. The world needs more good and kindly teachers, even if they do have a pretty fatal flaw. And I also dislike Snape--he strikes me as petty and immature, and I spent most of OotP wanting to smack him upside the head and say, "Get over yourself!" When it comes to the Pensieve scene, I think the boys were being assholes (Lupin included), but I don't make it the permanent and indelible mark of their character. I think Snape was the victim in that scene (and probably a frequent target), but I don't take it to mean he was always perfectly innocent.

But I've run into this before--the idea seems to be that if you're a Snape fan, the Marauders must all be craven, and no matter how nicely Harry sees them, they're all concealing deep and awful secrets about their own evilness. I haven't noticed too much of the parallel with Remus-fans; we pretty much see Snape as a nasty, snarky bastard, but not as currently evil and hiding it. (I don't especially trust him because I think he's mentally unstable, but I thought the same about Sirius.) I'm willing to guess it exists, though.

(Of course, there's the bizarre phenomenon among Peter-haters of making Snape the fourth Marauder or something equivalent to it, but that's too weird to contemplate.)

I don't know. It's weird.

EDIT: I want to add that I'm not posting this as a "What's wrong with them?" sort of thing, because unlike some of the shipping stuff, this isn't in the "Tear your hair out" category for me. It's interesting to me how people have read completely different books here--it's like there's no common ground at all. Now, I was a bullied kid (like, I'd guess, a whole lot of other fen), but I didn't find my sympathy going to Snape at all, despite having given it freely at earlier points in the series. I don't know what it was that pushed me over the line. Remus, I always liked and always will. Sirius, eh. He makes me a little nutty, but I don't mind him. James, I know nothing about except that he bullied Snape and later sacrificed his own life to save his son and wife. Of the two, I tend to put more weight on the latter, but we just don't know. Oh, and he opened his home to the runaway Sirius, as Ron opens his home to Harry.

Shrug. It's just a split that I'm looking at with an Oz-like, "Huh."
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ladylisse From: ladylisse Date: May 8th, 2004 12:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
Mostly I'm fascinated by James and Lily, with the fact that James was, in fact, a complete prat kept completely in mind. Snape's interesting too, don't get me wrong, but I don't really understand the need to vilify MWPP in stories about him. I mean, this is a guy who went over to the bad guys, came back to the good guys, and is still a petty small-minded bastard. There's plenty of interesting material there without making him the victimized hero.

I don't get a lot of the MWPP vs. Snape stuff, actually. Or a lot of the MWPP clichés in general. But I have to admit that's because I'm a fan of Lily first and foremost, and where you have MWPP clichés you have wallflower!Lily or Hermioneclone!Lily. BAH.

...this fandom needs to start handing out combat medals or something. Seriously.
ashtur From: ashtur Date: May 8th, 2004 12:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
It strikes me that people want to read and believe that people are always "this" or "that". A person is "good" or "bad", and they can't be something of a mixed bag, and it is in that distinction that the "wars" begin I think. We see troublesome moments from one or the other, and so we assume that must be absolutely typical of each and every moment, and every aspect of their personality. What makes Remus my favorite character of his generation is that he is so layered, and those layers are such an essential part of him.

Actually, if I'd been around school with people like them, I would have loathed all of them (for different reasons). The difference is that while he still has his issues, I think Remus managed to mature past those issues more than Snape or Sirius.
atropos87 From: atropos87 Date: May 10th, 2004 02:05 am (UTC) (Link)
Exactly the point that I wanted to make. Given that one of the joys of JKR's characters is that they are three-dimensional, why is it so difficult for people to accept that one moment of bad behaviour does not an evil person make (and similarly with good behaviour and good people too)? The other thing that frustrates me a bit is the general unwillingness to accept that individuals change over time. Snape and MWPP will be different men from the boys they were at school because of all that has happened to them in the interim. And we all do things as young adults that we are ashamed of later. Yes, Harry finds the Pensieve scene shocking because he has idolised his father's memory and doesn't have the benefit of time to look back on his own adolescence, but it surprises me that anyone over the age of about 20 looks at it in the same way.

Oh well - I guess I'm with Fern on the 'giant shrug' response to this issue.
From: (Anonymous) Date: May 8th, 2004 12:26 pm (UTC) (Link)

from Sreya

What has shocked me is just how much of an effect the Pensieve Scene had on the fandom. I read that part, and went "Yup, that looks like a group of boys who would break the law and hang around with a werewolf off school grounds and..." I mean, am I the only one who saw it coming that Harry's father and his friends weren't perfect little angels who liked jokes? And Snape's hatred had always told me that he probably ended up on the receiving end of their wands a few times, though I'm also entirely sure Snape gave as good as he got.

I guess I just don't understand the big deal. Rowling never set out to make any of those 5 characters seem overly nice -- okay, I take it back. Remus is and continues to be a sweetheart. But he has his flaws, too -- remember, this is a man who knew that an "escaped mass-murderer" who was trying to get into the school not only knew about all sorts of secret passages to get him past the Dementors, but also is an unregistered Animagus... and he NEVER told anyone, just because, if I'm remembering the book correctly, he was afraid Dumbledore would think badly of him because of what they did more than 15 years ago as boys.

Nice, but sometimes Lupin just refuses to use his common sense. And the others are just as flawed. Sirius had obviously acted like enough of a prat that everyone was willing to believe he killed Peter and all those poor Muggles without insisting he be given a fair trial. Peter clearly wasn't as trustworthy as people like to think, since he betrayed his friends to the Dark Lord. Sure, Snape may finally be on the right side, but he's a petty prick about a lot of things, and a bully of a teacher. And James -- well, we had our hints that he was pretty arrogant! Snape certainly never let more than a few chapters go by without some snide remark about James. Yes, it was to torment Harry, but it was too consistent to not have any truth behind it.

Goodness, this went long! I think I'll skip the comments on Lily and leave it here. Summary: why everyone suddenly has to jump on a bandwagon to hate someone or other because of that scene is beyond me. There were no earth-shattering revelations in it, unless you just hadn't bothered to pay attention to the last four books. The characters are the same as they always were.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: May 8th, 2004 12:58 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: from Sreya

I mean, am I the only one who saw it coming that Harry's father and his friends weren't perfect little angels who liked jokes?

Nope. Nor was I thinking, "AAAAAGGGH! This changes the whole moral alignment of the universe!"

I thought they were acting like a bunch of spoiled prats, but that was all.
kizmet_42 From: kizmet_42 Date: May 8th, 2004 12:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
My two favorite characters in the books are Lupin AND Snape.

Yes, that's considered to be schizophrenic in this fandom.

But they're both incredibly complex characters and their mutual (even if Remus hides it) dislike makes me just want to read stories about them, and in that sorry lack, write them.

How about it, Fern? I know that rj_anderson has a great story "Cold Water" on SQ about the two of them http://www.sugarquill.net/read.php?storyid=1392&chapno=1 that is one of the most powerful stories I've ever read (and reread, and reread). How about a story about Lupin and Snape from you?

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: May 8th, 2004 12:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think my problem is that after OotP, I stopped being terribly interested in Snape. Just... aversion.

There will probably be a Lupin/Snape scene in Shifts (Remus does say he'll talk to Snape about the Occlumency issue), so I'll attack that when I get there, or maybe do it as a scenelet since I'm thinking about it.
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From: falco_999 Date: May 8th, 2004 01:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think that the MWPP vilification may be due, at least in part, to the fact that quite a few people in the HP fandom have been bullied at some point in their lives and tend to over-identify with young!Snape. Just look at how many people displayed the anti-bulling logo that went round. They aren't quite so bothered by Snape's treatment of Neville, because it tends to be more common to be bullied by a classmate than it is by a teacher. Thus, they don't equate themselves as much with Neville.

I've never been able to like Sirius, not because I think he's a terrible person, but because I've met boys somewhat similar to him in RL. Rationally, I know that he has many good points. Instinctively, he makes me want to dodge into the nearest girls' toilets until his scene's over. Which is rather an exaggerated way of expressing my point of view, but there you are. :) Anyway, I think that an inability in some members of the fandom to separate their own experience of bulling from Snape's could be one reason for the hatred of James and Sirius.

I'm not sure where the Snape worship stems from though. And I can't work out how people who claim to like James and Sirius as teens are also able to detest Peter during the same era. A whole crowd of kids enjoyed watching Snape being turned upside-down.

I seem to have become rather side-tracked by Peter. So I'll conclude this ridiculously long comment by adding that I'm a Remus-fan too, despite his lack of common sense, as Sreya put it.
From: falco_999 Date: May 8th, 2004 01:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Replying to my own post to clarify my meaning. If it needs clarifying - I don't know.

I'm not saying that Sirius and James were bad people. They were good people at heart, especially as adults. As teenage boys they were, well, teenage boys. Fortunately, they grew out of it. ;)

And there are many people in the fandom who have been bullied and aren't terribly bothered by James and Sirius. But over-identification with Snape could possibly be one reason - of many - that a few HP fans tend to demonise MWPP whilst glorifying the him-of-the-greasy-hair.

I'm sorry if I've strayed of the topic or annoyed anyone.
manicwriter1271 From: manicwriter1271 Date: May 8th, 2004 01:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Call me dumb but I can't think right off the top of my head what a "Marauder" is...I'm in the middle of re-reading Prisoner of Azkaban right now, specifically, the British version, which I picked up in London. It's much more authentic and enjoyable. I'm not sure I remember all the details correctly from GoF and OotP though, since it's been awhile.

I, of course, am a Lupin-fangirl. I don't even bother to hide it, and wouldn't want to. The world needs more good and kindly teachers, even if they do have a pretty fatal flaw.

Amen. And I don't even fault him for being a werewolf--he can't help it. He's been the best Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher yet, and it's too bad he got fired over Malfoy finding out he was a werewolf. What I would love to see in one of the next two books is Lucius Malfoy and Draco getting their come-uppance. Of course Lucius is in prison now so we'll see.

And I also dislike Snape--he strikes me as petty and immature, and I spent most of OotP wanting to smack him upside the head and say, "Get over yourself!"

Yes, no kidding. I felt sorry for him in that Pensieve scene, and I understand why it would make him angry, but geez--how old was he supposed to be by the time Harry got to school? In his forties probably? That's a little too old to be holding onto to a grudge from high school, and it's especially immature to take it out on your perpetrator's son and his friends.

And one thing I've been noticing in re-reading PoA--what on Earth is Snape's damage regarding Neville? You'd think poor old Neville would have had a hard enough life that even Snape would leave him alone.

When it comes to the Pensieve scene, I think the boys were being assholes (Lupin included), but I don't make it the permanent and indelible mark of their character.

They were being assholes, but they were teenage boys, and a lot of them are cocky assholes.

As far as favorite characters--on a Harry Potter website I would probably be "sirius_girl". I love him to pieces. I was pissed during OotP, almost as pissed as I'll be in Episode III. I like James too--he may have picked on Snape, but he did grow up (which is more than we can say for Snape), married Lily, and sacrificed himself for her and Harry. He was a member of the original Order of the Phoenix. I was also endeared to him when he showed up in GoF to give Harry advice.

As far as Peter Pettigrew--I'm one of the anti's. I'd like to perform a lengthy Cruciatus curse on the bastard.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: May 8th, 2004 01:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Marauders" is just a fan name that's easier to pronounce than MWPP (Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs), from the Marauder's Map. Never used in the books. :)

I think Rowling said that Snape was 36 or so in PoA, so he's about 38 now... at 34, I think I can say that's old enough to get the hell over high school. I would hope that if a child of one of the girls who bullied me showed up for a writing workshop, I wouldn't take it out on her.

As to Neville... what is his damage?

On Peter, I'm in the "I suspect JKR is building toward some kind of redemption" camp. But he's a bit difficult to like precisely.

On the other hand, I hate it when people just pretend he wasn't there. It's like writing a SW fanfic and saying, "Boy, I sure don't like that Lando in ESB. I'll just skip him."
asphodeline From: asphodeline Date: May 9th, 2004 05:40 am (UTC) (Link)
Hi! I've added you as a friend. I am following pauraque's PoA posts and have enjoyed reading your comments. I confess, I am totally Snape/Slytherin but of all the others, have a great liking for Lupin's character. As you've said, it's interesting to see how different views are depending on which side (if any) you ally yourself with. Look forward to reading more of your opinion....
scionofgrace From: scionofgrace Date: May 9th, 2004 08:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think the largest looming problem with all these warring "camps" of fans is oversimplification. Of course, you're gonna get that with younger fans. Anyway, while I was as shocked as anyone by the Pensieve scene, I can now read it and just sit there shaking my head at how stupid and thoughtless teenage boys can be.

First off, following the first rule of hermeneutics, we don't have any context for the Pensieve scene. Others have said and I agree that Snape probably gave as good as he got. James and Co. had the advantage of being more popular, better-looking, and not into the dark arts. I would also not be surprised if they weren't the only ones who went about "hexing people for the fun of it." So yes, it's bullying, and Snape in this case was the victim, but I would contend that on the whole it was more like an ongoing war.

Second, James reminds me strongly of my older brother: an intelligent, charismatic young man who was more thoughtless and egocentric than actually malicious. Daniel persecuted people (including me) not because he was cruel, but because he loved watching their reactions. It was so easy for him to get under people's skins! It took years before he realized what he was doing to other people, and has since become a very decent man. I mean, he's still charismatic, but he's decided to use it to sell cars, rather than to mercilessly tease his little sister.

I like this quote from Sirius best: "Of course he was a bit of an idiot. We were all idiots!" Anybody who thinks decent men couldn't possibly have been idiot teenagers obviously isn't paying attention.

(anymore, I laugh every time James tousles his hair. Can the boy be any more ridiculous?)
From: (Anonymous) Date: May 10th, 2004 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
The more scary thing is, if anything, the camps are more violent amongst the *older* fans. Years of carefully-nursed memories at how much high school sucked, moderated by the distance of time that lets someone forget that they, too, were a jerk back then, makes for a case of powerful yet generally misguided identification.

But that's my theory, and I'm sticking to it.
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From: dphearson Date: May 10th, 2004 09:43 pm (UTC) (Link)

The reason why I think so many fen seem to like Snape is that he is the underdog. Anytime he is on the seen, he decribed in terms that would suit a gargoyle, and yet, he is also responsilble for a kid that he does not like- yet does try to do the right ultimately.

What I do see with Remus and Sirius and Jame is that they were pampered, spoiled people- and seemed to get away with everything. Their bullying did not cause them any short nights, and I am quite sure if Severus had been killed in Sirius prank, they would have shrugged off as a "greasy kid who was interested in the Dark arts getting what he deserved" (and yes, that is indeed what Sirius insinuated in OOTP).

Nice. Yet, Severus Snape, the greasy gargoyle, should, without compliant, make a potion for someone who does not respect him, and kindly and warmly put his life in danger for the son of some who humialted him in school- for it seems seven years.

Sweet. Somebody call the Vatican for sainthood procedures.

Now, as for the whole thing about being anti- Remus-(and actually, I am not) he is a liar and cheat. Period. Just because he has a condition and that he is poor does not make him enobled fine feeling. He is capable fo using people, depends over much on popular feeling, is given to sheap sentiment and is a poor friend- what type of friend would let a another friend rot in Azakaban for 13 years, when he knew that other friend loved the man he was accused of murdering to pieces? Why, Remus in the Pensieve scene, that's who.

It is a damn shame about Sirius. Because you know, despite his bouts of absolute stupidity, he had so much love and emotion to give, and his life was over befor eit ever really began. I like to think that after a really good, drag out, teeth knocked out sort of fight, Severus and Sirius could have become very good, very snarky friends, two old men arguing over chess and their lunch. *sniff*
From: threeoranges Date: May 11th, 2004 06:54 am (UTC) (Link)
Nice. Yet, Severus Snape, the greasy gargoyle, should, without compliant, make a potion for someone who does not respect him, and kindly and warmly put his life in danger for the son of some who humialted him in school- for it seems seven years.

Sweet. Somebody call the Vatican for sainthood procedures.

Erm, you gloss over the words "son of".

Furthermore, had Harry arrived in the classroom smirking and making comments like "Hey, Professor Snape, washed your underpants lately?" then Snape would be entirely justified in hating him.


Harry was a perfect blank slate when he arrived at Hogwarts, he knew nothing of his father's past history. Had Snape been a regular mature human being, he would have treated Harry the same as any other kid in his class. I don't deny that means "badly", since Snape is an unprofessional person who should never NEVER have been made a teacher, but the very least Snape should not have singled him out for personal and unjust abuse.

By acting in that manner, he's ENSURED that Harry - until then completely innocent - will inherit his father's grudge.

Indefensible behaviour. Completely indefensible.

what type of friend would let a another friend rot in Azakaban for 13 years, when he knew that other friend loved the man he was accused of murdering to pieces?

Lupin had no reason to assume that Black was not a traitor. Only one person could have revealed the Potters' location to Voldemort, and that was the Secret-Keeper; to Lupin's knowledge the Secret-Keeper was Black; Black is subsequently found surrounded by dead Muggles and debris, laughing hysterically. Witness reports *claim* he killed Pettigrew.

Given the lack of trial and the fact that the traitor HAD to be someone close, it is not fair to accuse Lupin of "cowardice" for not leaping to Black's defence. He had no reason to.
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musesfool From: musesfool Date: May 11th, 2004 08:55 am (UTC) (Link)
Most people have known boys like MWPP and Snape. Many fans have been Snape (or Peter) more than James or Sirius. Therefore they identify with Snape.

Thing is, many of them don't believe that people change. And I can point you to comments in my LJ and other people's to that effect, so I'm not just blowing smoke here and citing some mysterious 'they'.

For many fans, Sirius and James were big nasty bullies at 15 and so they must have been until the day they died.

The fact that Snape is a big nasty bully in the narrative present is considered 'character building' for Harry, or a sign of repressed lust [ew. I loathe Snarry, so that's my personal bias] or is excused, even though an adult in authority bullying children is far worse, in my mind than kids doing it to other kids.

We won't even go into how Snape CHOSE to become a Death Eater, while Sirius and James CHOSE to fight on right side, the side that wasn't going around killing people for having 'dirty blood.'

Apparently being a fifteen year old bully is a worse crime than being a Death Eater. And Snape must have had his reasons, and they were good, whereas Sirius and James only joined Ddore's side because they were looking for adventure - they had no convictions about right and wrong.

*rolls eyes*

And hey, I give Snape props for changing sides, for spying, for repeatedly saving the life of the kid of a man he hated.

But if he can be forgiven for becoming a Death Eater, if his change is believable, I do not understand why Sirius and James are painted as never having grown up (well, okay, I can see why in Sirius's case, but Azkaban stunted his maturity - he needed therapy desperately, not being locked up again).

Fannish double standard at work, and by god, I loathe that.

And personally, I don't care how horrid Snape's schooldays were, his treatment of Harry and Neville is unconscionable.

Of course, Remus's not revealing Sirius's animagus abilities and knowledge of the secret passages is also unconscionable (though Harry glosses over it). And I adore Lupin. Love him to bits.

They are not 15-year-old boys anymore, and Snape at least needs to get over himself. He doesn't have the excuse of 12 years in Azkaban to fuck his mind up, which Sirius does.

What I find amusing is how, pre-OotP, many Snape fans gave him what turned out to be Sirius's canon background, and used it as an excuse for his narrative-present nastiness, but refuse to cut Sirius the same slack.

I love James, Sirius and Remus, but I never expected them to be the saints Hagrid et al. made them out to be (well, James, anyway). I find Snape a fascinating and complex character, but I don't like him at all. I also don't feel the need to make him a psycho rapist in order to make Sirius or Remus look good.

Huh. I never get tired of ranting on that subject. *g*
marinarusalka From: marinarusalka Date: May 11th, 2004 11:03 am (UTC) (Link)
Apparently being a fifteen year old bully is a worse crime than being a Death Eater. And Snape must have had his reasons, and they were good, whereas Sirius and James only joined Ddore's side because they were looking for adventure - they had no convictions about right and wrong.

Right. And don't forget, in every bad thing that's ever happened to Snape, he was the victim. He deserves total sympathy, his past suffering makes all his current character flaws sympathetic and understandable, and he is in no way responsible for failing to remake his own fate into something better.

OTOH, every bad thing that's ever happened to Remus is his own damn fault. Being afflicted from early childhood with a condition that puts him in excruciating pain once a month and causes most of the Wizarding World to view him as subhuman can't possibly make his flaws sympathetic or understandable. If he wasn't such a selfish coward, he would've proved Sirius' innocence, taken Harry away from the Dursleys and single-handedly convinced Wizarding society to love werewolves. Because all those things are much easier to achieve than, say, dealing with bullying classmates.

Okay, I'm abusing sarcasm now, sorry. But I share your loathing for the fannish double standard, even though I like Snape more than you do.

ladysorka From: ladysorka Date: May 11th, 2004 09:06 am (UTC) (Link)
(here via quickquote)

My two favourite characters in HP are Snape and Lupin. Yes, both of them. And actually, in the circles that I run, that's not very unusual at all.

Of course, when I say they're my favourite characters, that doesn't neccessarily mean I identify with them, or that I sympathize with them.

My love for Snape comes from the simple fact that he's the type of character that I love to play with. I have a thing for exceptionally grey characters. Are they good? Are they evil? Are they just really nasty gits who happen to be on the right side? Are they just good enough actors that they've convinced people they're on the right side? They fascinate me. Especially ones who've possibly made moral shifts along the way, ala Snape.

Also, I personally think that despite the chapter title, the pensieve scene was not Snape's worst memory. It was simply one (of probably many) memories he didn't want Harry to see. And I'm sure that, that wasn't because he was worried about Harry seeing something he didn't expect about his father, but that Snape did not want to have Harry seem him humilated like that, especially by his father. If there's one thing we can't deny about Snape, it's that the man has his pride, misplaced as it sometimes is.

My reasons for loving Remus are actually somewhat along the same lines. Yes, he's a great guy. I'd probably get along with him in RL (although, I think I'd probably enjoy talking with Snape as well). But he's made some... questionable choices which make his character that much more interesting to me. Take, for example, not telling Dumbledore/the Ministry/whatever that Sirius was an animagus.

Yes, Sirius was his friend. But, at that point in time, he honestly believed that Sirius had killed one of his other friends (not to mention a large number of muggles), and set the other two up for a nasty death. And that now he was on the run, set out to kill the offspring of said friends, and possibly a large number of people along the way. Why would he hold onto information that would be vital to this man's capture? Even more so later on, when it's discovered that Sirius has been in the castle, and no one can find him?

It intrigues me.

Characters like Sirius, James, and Peter I'm much more ambivalent about. Sirius I was rather "eh" about, although I frequently wanted to slap him for purposfully trying to endager the life of his godson, whether he realized it or not.

James I don't know enough about to make a judgement, but I wasn't the least bit suprised when he found out he was a bully very much like Malfoy - he was rich, he was popular, he was a jock... all very common igredients to be the bully. Of course, I'm sure he had good traits as well (just like I'm sure Malfoy has good traits - he's not the most popular guy in Slytherin for no reason), James just happened to be on "our side", making more of his good traits cancel out more of his bad traits.

Peter, well, Peter was a guy who just wanted to be popular, didn't quite make it, and made some truly horrible decisions. Though I'd love to see what drove him to that.
shadesofbrixton From: shadesofbrixton Date: May 11th, 2004 09:06 am (UTC) (Link)
Followed a link here...

I'm not going to try and defend my position because, as you said, a lot of people read entirely different books, and it has a lot to do with your interpretation of the canon. But the thing is, I started out with Lupin and Sirius as my all time favorite characters. And Snape sort of - no pun intended - wormed his way in when I wasn't looking. And now I love all three of them to tiny pieces completely independent of one another, and if anyone ever asks me why on earth I could support three characters as hugely and as opposite as I do, I just have to shrug. They're fun! Isn't that the point, after all?
sistermagpie From: sistermagpie Date: May 11th, 2004 09:54 am (UTC) (Link)
Came over from QQ.:-)

This has always amazed me as well because both sides are far more interesting when they're not black and white. Interestingly, I remember being taken to task pre-OotP for explaining that I thought MWPP were much the way they were revealed in OotP. I didn't hate them, I just said, c'mon, we see the way they taunt Sanpe through the map. We know James was the big hero. We know Snape's had a rough life and he probably feels like James got all the glory when all he did was get dramatically killed. We know about the Prank--where is this idea coming from that Snape was teh evil who tormented them?

And then OotP happened and suddenly Snape became this big victim, as if he hadn't picked on an 11-year-old boy from the first day of class. All the comments about how Snape would try to hex James and get him in trouble (the exact thing they used to trap him during the prank) suddenly disappeared and it was just James knocking his books out of his hands.

::sigh:: To me what's interesting is the way all of this was just the inevitable conclusion to a lot of very flawed boys who were often handled in exactly the wrong way. There are things I think Snape has legitimate gripes about, but I don't think it excuses all his behavior. I'm hoping this is part of the point, that Harry's desperate attempt to just find one villain are supposed to be a plot point--like the way he reacts to the Pensieve by declaring he'd never do that to anybody...except his own personal Snape, who would be Malfoy.

It's just a real shame because what I see as the real story is far more intersting--the way hurts have consequences and everybody has a story and nobody's perfect. It's messy, much more like life.
neotoma From: neotoma Date: May 11th, 2004 11:33 am (UTC) (Link)
It's odd, but I like Snape *and* Lupin. God knows that Snape is a complete asshole in the day to day, but I'm fond of the snarky git. Lupin, otoh, is a nice guy and I usually forget how how scarily irresponsible he is when it counts.

If you could blend them together (freak Apparation accident?) you'd get either a complete basket-case, or a superbly good teacher -- but it's a coin toss which blend you'd get, all bad traits, or all good ones...
froda_baggins From: froda_baggins Date: May 11th, 2004 12:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
You know, as a Lupin fangirl, I like to think I can take a step back and see all parties for what they truly are (including Lupin, who is far from being a saint), and it does make me scratch my head sometimes at the vehemency of some fen in their loathing of one side or the other.

Like musesfool said, it's a bit of a fandom double-standard, and I *hate* double-standards.
kiwislut From: kiwislut Date: May 11th, 2004 12:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sure to spark another debate between Froda and I... ~heh~

I don't know. Personally, I just want to reach through the pages and slap Snape around nearly every time he enters a scene. I'm going with what was said above - grudges against James, though childish, were understandable. But taking those grudges out on Harry, who had NOTHING to do with the situation, is utterly inexcusable.

I just can't bring myself to even consider liking Snape, no matter how hard I try.
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