Bookish Musings: Thoughts on the Harry Potter Series (Part 2)

 
 

I recently reread the Harry Potter series and decided to do some discussion posts about my thoughts on it! There was too much for one post, so I split it into two parts. Part 1 was about general things and the younger/student characters. Part 2 (this post) is about the adults!

*Note: I haven’t seen the movies, so this is based entirely on the books. I have no idea what differences the movies have.*

*Also note: This whole post contains spoilers.*


*This post contains SPOILERS for the entire Harry Potter series*

 

Barty Crouch Sr.

I know, I know, you’re probably like, “Who the hell is Crouch again?” or, “Why on earth is Kristen making a whole section to talk about him when he was just a random side character who was barely even in the book?” He was the one whose son impersonated Mad-Eye Moody for a year. His son was a Death Eater whom he sent to Azkaban but then helped escape because his wife couldn’t bear it and wanted to trade places. His wife then died in Azkaban, and he kept his son hidden away, under the Imperius curse. But then his son got away, and Crouch Sr. was put under the Imperius curse. And I actually felt bad for him.

He may have gone overboard, but he worked hard against the Death Eaters and was just trying to put away as many of them as possible. It had to be hard to send his own son to Azkaban, but he did it because his son really was supporting Voldemort as a Death Eater. But then he made another hard decision when he snuck his son out because it was what his wife wanted, and probably also because he still cared in some way for his son. He then had a lot of extra stress and difficulty in his life keeping that secret, keeping his son hidden, etc. I feel like he tried to do the right thing, but he was in such a tough situation, and I really can’t blame him for his actions. Especially since, when he realized the bad things his actions had led to, he tried to do the right thing and confess everything to Dumbledore, only to be killed before he could.

 

Snape

Controversial opinion time! I know some people love Snape, but I do not. He’s a well-written character, but regardless of everything we learn about him throughout the series, I don’t have sympathy for him, and I don’t feel he redeemed himself.

It doesn’t matter what your childhood or past is like, it doesn’t give you an excuse to treat others badly. But he did treat others badly. He was prejudiced. He tried to get James, Sirius, and Remus expelled when they all were in school together. As an adult, he bullied children to the point that they were terrified of him. He insulted Hermione’s teeth, purposely trying to make her feel bad about how she looked. He tried to poison Neville’s toad once just to teach Neville a lesson (therefore he’s cruel to animals). There’s no excuse for any of that. Not to mention he was just an awful teacher with awful teaching methods that didn’t encourage the students to learn and improve but rather demotivated them and made them too scared to think straight.

And here’s the other thing—he may have changed his allegiance from Voldemort to Dumbledore, but it wasn’t because he actually stopped being prejudiced and realized his mistakes. He only changed his allegiance because Voldemort killed Lily. Therefore, it stands to reason that if Voldemort hadn’t killed Lily, Snape would still have been a true Death Eater. Even when he found out Voldemort was going to go after the Potters, he admitted to Dumbledore that he only asked Voldemort to spare Lily, not James or Harry. He literally didn’t care about Voldemort killing James and Harry. He didn’t care about anyone else Voldemort was killing, not even children or babies. Just Lily.

As Lily said in the memory, Snape made his choice. He could’ve chosen not to become a Death Eater, but instead he chose to prejudiced and cruel. Not only was that wrong, it was also what pushed Lily away.

So yes, risking his life to work for Dumbledore as a double agent was a good thing that he did, but it wasn’t enough, in my opinion. And even if it did cancel out his actions of being a Death Eater (which I don’t feel it did because his actions were based on revenge against Voldemort more than actual remorse or repentance for taking the side of someone horrible), it still didn’t cancel out how badly he treated his students, especially Harry and Neville, whom he seemed to treat the worst.

And that’s another thing—I wonder if maybe he treated Neville especially badly because he wished that Voldemort had gone after Neville instead. Remember, the prophecy could’ve been about either Harry or Neville, but Voldemort chose Harry. It makes sense that Snape might’ve hated Neville for that reason, which only makes his actions toward Neville all the worse and proves even further that Snape wasn’t actually remorseful for being a Death Eater, only for getting Lily killed. (But of course this Neville thing is just speculation.)

Also, I feel like his love for Lily is made out to be his redeeming quality, but honestly? Pining over someone you can’t have for 20 years is obsessive. That “always” line is far more creepy, obsessive, and stalkerish than sweet and romantic, in my opinion.

Anyway, that’s why I don’t feel he truly redeemed himself.

Also, I think he should’ve quit teaching wizarding lessons and taught creative writing instead because he could be very eloquent when he wanted to be. I will give him that.

“I don’t expect you will really understand the softly simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes, the delicate power of liquids that creep through human veins, bewitching the mind, ensnaring the senses.”
-Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

 

“The Dark Arts,” said Snape, “are many, varied, ever-changing, and eternal. Fighting them is like fighting a many-headed monster, which, each time a neck is severed, sprouts a head even fiercer and cleverer than before. You are fighting that which is unfixed, mutating, indestructible.”

Harry stared at Snape. It was surely one thing to respect the Dark Arts as a dangerous enemy, another to speak of them, as Snape was doing, with a loving caress in his voice?
-Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

 
 

Sirius

SIRIUS IS JUST SO TRAGIC. I feel so much worse for Sirius than I do for anyone else in this series. He grew up with a terrible, prejudiced family who treated him like crap simply because he refused to be prejudiced like them. When he was only 21, his best friend, who was like a brother to him, was killed. He was thrown in Azkaban for 13 years, and everyone thought him a traitor. He broke out only to have to go into hiding for two years, living off rats in caves, hungry all the time. He was then stuck living back in the childhood home he hated, unable to even leave or be helpful in fighting against Voldemort. Then he was killed.

:’-( :’-( :’-(

Seeing Sirius sad made me so sad, but seeing Sirius happy also made me so sad because I knew what was coming. Why wouldn’t anyone just go live at Grimmauld Place with him??? I felt terrible for him, stuck there. But I guess part of the problem was that he didn’t even have friends anymore, except for Remus, and 13 years apart would put a bit of a damper on any friendship. (Not to mention how much more awkward it would be if you subscribe to the Wolfstar headcanon.) And I mean, I guess it would feel just as shitty, in a different way, to know someone is only living with you or visiting you out of pity. Poor guy, no wonder he was depressed and bitter and drinking. And another thing, yeah, he was still kind of immature and reckless, but that makes sense, and I don’t think it’s fair to blame him for that. He was thrown into a cell in Azkaban at 21. For 13 years. He didn’t have the chance to grow up, to experience adulthood the way most people do. In some ways, he would be kind of mentally stuck at 21. But in other ways, he’d have grown up a lot, because the horror of that place would do that to you. Harry even noticed a haunted look in his eyes that never went away. Gosh, I don’t even know where I’m going with all this, I just feel terrible for him.

 

Remus

I saved my favorite for last. Remus is one of my favorite literary characters, period. I’ve talked a bit about it before, but here’s a little more personal of an explanation. The first time I reread Harry Potter, it was during one of the worst periods of my chronic illness. I was struggling, and I felt alone because most of the people I thought would be there for me weren’t. It also seemed like, everywhere I turned, chronic illness was portrayed as something you’re not allowed to struggle with emotionally, that you’re just supposed to be this bright, shining ball of positivity. Then I came upon this character who was not only kind and caring and brave and a great person but who, as shown in later books, was also struggling, and some of his struggles had some similarities to my own. I finally felt like someone understood me, at least a little bit. Now, obviously having a chronic illness is entirely different from being a werewolf, but that didn’t matter. What mattered was that I formed a connection with his character in a way I had never formed a connection with any other character. So he’ll always be one of my favorites. But I think, even if I hadn’t connected in that way, I’d have loved him anyway because he’s such a good-hearted person <3

 

The Marauders vs. Snape

Despite how sad I feel for Sirius, and despite my love for Remus, I know they were not perfect. Sirius and James were bullies, definitely toward Snape and it sounds like toward others too, from what Lily said about James hexing people in the hallways. And Sirius did basically try to get Snape killed when they were both students by sending him to the Shrieking Shack while Remus was transformed into a vicious wolf. And Remus, though he didn’t do the bullying himself, just kind of let it happen sometimes.

But number one, we don’t know the whole story. Look at Harry and his friends vs. Draco, for example. They only fought with him because Draco was an asshole. And from what I’ve seen of Snape, I have no reason to believe he was any better.

Number two, they grew up to realize their mistakes and become better people. They didn’t join a prejudiced gang of wizards who hated muggle-borns, they didn’t terrorize children, etc. And look at what happened when Remus worked at the school—he didn’t do anything to try and antagonize Snape, but Snape purposely gave the students homework to learn about werewolves in the hopes that someone would figure out Remus’s secret and then he was the one who “accidentally” leaked that secret to the students at the end of the year, causing Remus to resign. Sure, Sirius was still kind of immature and argued with Snape, but again, that’s because his adulthood was spent in Azkaban. What’s Snape’s excuse? Snape could have moved on and had a decent life.

Number three, sitting back and letting things happen, as in Remus’s case, isn’t ok, but I can understand why he did it. I’m sure he did tell them to stop sometimes, but you ultimately can’t control you friends. He could’ve stopped being friends with them, but they were the ones who stood by him even when they learned he was a werewolf, the ones who weren’t prejudiced against him and who even learned how to become Animagi just to be there for him. I can see why he didn’t want to lose them.

None of this makes the behavior we saw from them ok, but it makes more understandable. Anyway, if people are able to brush off Draco’s and Snape’s behavior by saying they were young, then the same applies to how the Marauders were when they were teens. (Which, I have mixed feelings about that. I agree with Harry, who kept pointing out, whenever anyone excuse was, “He was young!” that they were the same age as Harry and his friends were during the book. But on the other hand, 15/16/17 is young, and we do make mistakes, so, depending upon the severity of the actions, I tend to cut teen characters some slack, especially if they become better people as they grow.)

 

Wolfstar

For anyone who doesn’t know (I didn’t until recently), Wolfstar is the Remus + Sirius ship name. It might not technically be canon, but it totally could be. I mean, there’s nothing in the book that negates it from being possible or believable. It never says anywhere that either character is straight, and it never mentions either of them having others partners when they were at Hogwarts. And if you read the series from this viewpoint of shipping them, it makes everything between them even more emotional and tragic, especially the scene when Sirius died and Remus, pale with his voice breaking, had to drag Harry away and tell him that Sirius was gone :’-(

Btw, if you’re looking for some of that aforementioned fanart, this tumblr is my favorite (and this one, by the same artist, for NSFW art) because the art is amazing, and she actually draws them close to how I picture them myself. This picture especially is heartbreaking D-‘:

 

Everyone Else

Again, there were more adult characters, but those are the only ones I felt like discussing. If you want to chat about any other characters or things that happened in the comments, go ahead!

 
 
 

Talk to me!

Have you read the Harry Potter series?
Do you ship Wolfstar?
What are your thoughts on the older characters?
(I don't mind disagreements, as long as we keep it respectful!)

 

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40 thoughts on “Bookish Musings: Thoughts on the Harry Potter Series (Part 2)

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  1. Greg

    I’ve heard of Snape of course, and I feel like I know a little about him, only from blog comments and stuff, but I can see where he would be controversial. Having only read the first book, I always think of Alan Rickman when I hear the name Snape- I wonder if his performance affects how some people feel about him? And yeah he doesn’t sound very sympathetic, especially if he bullied children. I do love those quotes though. That first one especially. I don’t know if he says them in the movies, but I can almost hear Rickman saying them with a sneer. :)

    REmus sounds awesome, and how cool that you were able to connect like that w/ his character. Those kinds of characters are the best, the ones that touch us on a certain level.

    The Marauders sound complex and interesting too. Wolfstar- with a name like that, why not??

    1. Kristen Burns

      I didn’t think of that, but you’re probably right. People just love Alan Rickman, so they love his performance and it translates to a love of Snape. I’m unaffected since I haven’t seen the movies lol. But he’s absolutely terrible toward the students, insulting them and terrifying them and giving preferential treatment and stuff.

      I love Remus so much! It is a great feeling when you find a character you connect with like that. But he’s also just great <3

      The Marauders have a whole fanbase of their own. Lol Wolfstar *is* a pretty cool ship name!

  2. Michelle @ Pink Polka Dot Books

    Thank you!! I am so glad to find someone else who isn’t a Snape fan. When his big “revelation” came about, I was expecting this big THING to come out and all I got was an obsessive crush, bullying, and ALWAYS. Like really?? That’s supposed to make up for the terrible things he did to Harry?? Sorry, but no. And I KNOW Dumbledore told him to kill him, but I just can’t get over the fact that he DID. I do agree with Greg that love for Alan Rickman has helped with Snape’s image.

    Sirius is my fave. I’ve always liked him the best. and even knowing what happens to him didn’t make reading it any easier. Rowling got some kind of kick out of taking every single father figure away from Harry. When Dumbledore died I was full of such RAGE, which I don’t think I would have felt if Sirius was still alive. It was just that with Sirius gone, Dumbledore was what Harry had left, and then he was taken away too. UGHHH!!! I get that it was probably done because Harry needed to figure things out without Dumbledore leading him, but still– SO FRUSTRATING!!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Snape haters, unite! Lol. Yeah, the revelations about him just… weren’t things that actually redeem him, in my opinion. They especially didn’t make up for bullying his students. I’m actually ok with the Dumbledore killing because Dumbledore did ask him, and Snape didn’t want to do that, but Dumbledore was going to be killed that night anyway. At least with Snape killing him, it was quick. I also agree with Greg that the Snape love probably does have something to do with Alan Rickman.

      POOR TRAGIC SIRIUS. Ugh, yeah, poor Harry too. That’s true, that probably is why it was done, but it’s still so sad!

    1. Kristen Burns

      I think I felt some sympathy toward Snape the first time I read it too, but it had been a long time between books, so I didn’t even remember everything about him. James did sound like a jerk too though.

  3. Let's Get Beyond Tolerance

    Oh gosh, I love Remus and Sirius and I hate how their stories ended. It’s just heart breaking. I didn’t realize Wolfstar is how people phrased the Remus/Sirius ship. That’s super awesome – and I totally ship them. I actually read an interview once where the actor who played Remus in the films said he actually thought that Remus was gay, so that’s how he played him…and then the book came out with Remus getting married. LOL Granted, he could still be bisexual, but yeah, it totally feels like those two are in love in the books.

    -Lauren

    1. Kristen Burns

      He totally could be bisexual! I’m holding onto that belief because it doesn’t actually say anywhere in the books what either one of their sexualities is. And it doesn’t mention them dating anyone in the Marauder’s era. So why should we assume they’re straight? Yeah, apparently their ship is Wolfstar because wolf, obvi, and Sirius is the name of a constellation of a dog or something like that. Part of me would love a Marauder’s prequel kind of book, but the other part of me doesn’t want that because I want to continue being able to imagine Wolfstar is canon.

  4. Bookgraphy

    Really Great Post. I agree with what you said about Snape, I love his character the same way I love Voldemort’s character, it’s extremely well written but we can’t just say that he was a good person because he wasn’t. I wish I never have to deal with a teacher like Snape, I would definitely do anything in my power to just switch classes haha. AND SIRIUS, he’s my favorite character, I just love him too much. It makes me sad thinking about him. I didn’t know about Wolfstar that would be so nice or even more sad, like wow, I actually never thought about that possibility haha

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yes, I agree! They’re both well-written characters, but that’s not the same as being a good person. Ugh, I feel bad for anyone who has to deal with someone like Snape as a teacher. Like, aside from being a bully, his teaching methods are just awful and stress-inducing. It makes me so sad thinking about Sirius too cuz it was all just so tragic! Lol I didn’t think about the possibility either until I saw some fanart, and now I totally ship it.

  5. Lindsi

    I love so many of these characters! Sirius is definitely a favorite. I feel like he always drew the short stick, though. It totally sucked, and I hated what his death meant for Harry. He finally felt like he had family, and then it was literally ripped away from him. JUST UGH I CANNOT EVEN.

    I adore Remus. He struggles with himself, but always wants to do the right thing and help others. I was really happy when he and Tonks were married, and that Harry was asked to care for their child after their deaths. I feel like Harry was responsible for a child when he was still a child himself…

    Wolfstar is new to me…must research….

    There are so many wonderful points made in this post and truly wonderful topics to discuss. I’ll be back! Lol!

    1. Kristen Burns

      He did! Poor Sirius just had terrible thing after terrible thing! And yeah, his death was also terrible for Harry :-(

      I love Remus so much. He was not without his flaws, but he really had a good heart. I actually looked that up because in Cursed Child Harry mentioned something about having Teddy over for dinner once a week, and I was confused. It turns out Teddy Lupin was raised by Tonks’s mother, but I imagine Harry was around a lot to be a father figure to him.

      Wolfstar was new to me too until I came upon that fanart and was sold lol. It totally makes sense though.

      Thank you!

  6. Erica

    I’m totally with you. Snape was a bully to CHILDREN. Ugh. That was one element that really bothered me when I first read the books back in elementary/middle/high school.

  7. chucklesthescot

    I hated James Potter. He was a prejudiced arrogant bully who behaved the way Draco did but didn’t have the excuse of having Draco’s obnoxious family to set a bad example. He and Sirius started picking on Snape on the train on their first day at Hogwarts, even telling Lily during the exams that he has no legitimate reason to bully him other than for fun because he existed. They bully and humiliate Snape for years, having fun picking on the kid in tatty clothes who grew up in a family of domestic abuse, so it isn’t surprising that he decided to get his own back. Snape saves Harry’s life in his first year at Hogwarts, raises the alarm when Harry goes to the Ministry in book 5 which lets the Order capture the Death Eaters and save Harry, was horrified by Dumbledore’s plan to have Harry die to save everyone, didn’t want to be the one to kill Dumbledore and even at the end he was trying to find Harry to tell him the truth of Dumbledore’s plan-an act which killed him. He had to risk his life daily as a double agent years after Lily died.

    As much as I like adult Sirius, he tried to kill a child at Hogwarts and he was willing to let his friend Remus in werewolf form kill someone and suffer the trauma of that act forever, just because Snape was spying on them. Snape hated Remus because he believed that Remus was in on the plan to kill him that night and thought that Remus was helping Sirius on the run. I like adult Remus but as a prefect at school, he was duty bound to stop his friends behaving like that but he never lifted a finger so he can’t expect Snape to be nice to him or keep his secret years later. Snape’s behaviour to Harry was based on him looking like his father, the man who wrecked his life. I’m not saying it was right to bully kids but frankly, it was down to Dumbledore to stop it and he chose not to, so he is as much to blame as anyone. I think Snape joined the Death Eaters as much to belong somewhere for once in his life as anything else. We know he wasn’t a hater of muggles as the girl he loved was one and he did beg Voldemort to spare her which under the circumstances took some guts. Yes Snape did bad things but his spying for Dumbledore was vital. I think his good deeds far outweigh his bad or else Harry wouldn’t name a child after him and call him the bravest man he ever knew.

    I don’t buy into this stalker stuff with Lily either. Snape and Lily were best friends before going to school and he loved her his entire life. Seeing her date the guy who made his life a misery must’ve been his worst nightmare. There’s nothing creepy about his love for her as far as I’m concerned. The good things he did were because of her. If they had got together as a couple he might never have become a Death Eater.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Ok, let’s see… I agree with some of what you’ said, but I still disagree completely about Snape. Hopefully we will still be blogging friends by the time we finish discussing this lol.

      Now that you’ve compared James to Draco, I can see it. I love Remus, and I like Sirius, but I never really took a liking to James. His bullying wasn’t ok. However, I don’t know that Snape was as innocent as you’re making him seem. (Though maybe he was, we don’t really get to see how he treated them or what happened when they met.)

      I think when Sirius did that, it was probably his reckless impulsiveness more than a thought-out thing, however, that was absolutely not ok either. I thought of that too, that not only would Snape have been killed, Remus would’ve been emotionally scarred for life to know that he killed someone and he could’ve ended up in prison. That’s the one thing Sirius did that’s really hard to swallow.

      Remus shouldn’t have sat back and let his friends bully Snape, no. But I think he grew up and realized his mistakes. And Remus himself was on the receiving end of terrible treatment by others for being a werewolf, and he handled it maturely and moved on from it.

      You’re also right that Dumbledore should’ve done more to stop Snape’s bullying. But Dumbledore did a lot of questionable things, and even Aberforth pointed that out to Harry (and Harry’s kid’s first name is Albus, despite that).

      But here’s where I disagree. It’s not Lily’s fault Snape became a Death Eater, not is it her fault that she didn’t love him in that way. She was under no obligation to date him just because he loved her all his life. People fall in love that’s unrequited all the time, and they don’t join prejudice groups and become implicit in murder because of it. If that’s why he joined, that’s not an excuse. That just makes him like one of those guys who calls themselves a “nice guy” then turns around and threatens a girl or pulls put a gun and shoots her when she turns him down. And the way I see it, he did the good things he did because he wanted revenge on Voldemort. And even though it had to do with his feelings for Lily, that doesn’t change the fact that he didn’t care about Voldemort killing her baby or husband or friends. If he really loved her, then he should have cared about her happiness. He was selfish. Also, just because someone loves a person, doesn’t mean they’re not prejudiced against whatever group they’re in. E.g. a man can love a woman but still be sexist. And saving Harry the first year, sending help to the Ministry, not wanting to kill Dumbledore, those are just that any decent person would do. I don’t think he deserves special credit for that. And that doesn’t change how badly he treated Harry, a child who never did anything to him (which I know you did say wasn’t ok). There was a moment when Snape was horrified by Dumbledore’s plan in which I thought maybe Snape did care, but then he revealed he didn’t actually care about Harry, he still only cared about Lily.

      Ultimately, Snape chose to nurse his unrequited love and his grudges for his entire life instead of ever moving on and finding happiness. And he chose to become a Death Eater. The only person Snape has to blame for how his life turned out is himself. If he had been bullied like that and became a Death Eater but then realized he was wrong and turned to Dumbledore to atone for that reason, and if he had been decent to the students, and if he had grown up and moved on and been a decent person in general, I would have an entirely different opinion about Snape. But that’s not how things happened. I know you’re still going to disagree with me (which is fine, we’re both allowed to have our opinions), but that’s how I see things.

      1. chucklesthescot

        You asked what WE thought and I gave MY opinion, using events from the book to illustrate my reasons. You said ‘I don’t know that Snape was as innocent as you’re making him seem.’ Am I not allowed to have a different opinion from you? I’m not right, I’m not wrong, I’m sharing my opinion. You said ‘we don’t really get to see what happened when they met.’ We do actually see what happened when they met for the first time as it is in book 7 when Harry goes into Snape’s memories, the same as we saw his abusive family life and being bullied at school and that’s what I’m using for reference.

        I said Snape *might* never have become a Death Eater if he and Lily had got together. I NEVER blamed Lily! I NEVER said Snape turned out that way because of her, or that her rejection was what made him join so please don’t put words in my mouth again. (His joining the group that became Death Eaters is well covered in book 7). I’m disappointed that you felt the need to go through most of my points and argue on them as to why I’m wrong as you’d already had your say in the post itself and I was just sharing mine. I find it all very disappointing as I’d looked forward to sharing my thoughts on my favourite books and I’m left wishing I hadn’t.

        1. Kristen Burns

          I’m sorry to have made you feel that way. To me, a discussion is each person sharing their opinion and thoughts in turns in relation to what the other person has said, so that’s all I meant to do. It won’t change what’s already happened, but if you want me to just delete this whole conversation, let me know, and I will.

  8. S. J. Pajonas

    Such great thoughts here! Especially about Remus. I feel very similarly about Snape, and when I tell people he was one of my favorite characters, it’s because of how he was written, not because of what he did or was. This is the writer in me coming out. My favorite character is Hermione, and my second favorite is Ron’s mom. Lol.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! That makes sense, I too sometimes like characters for how they’re written, not because of the kind of people they are. Hermione is great, and yes, I almost included a section about Mrs. Weasley because she’s so motherly toward Harry and I loved it!

  9. Aleen @ Lampshade Reader

    Okay, since you’ve written it out like that I can totally understand about Snape’s character. It’s been awhile since I’ve read the books. But great discussion, really puts things in perspective.

  10. Suzanne @ The Bookish Libra

    Great post! There’s always so much to talk about when it comes to this series. Sirius and Remus were two of my favorite characters as well. It broke my heart how each of their stories ended.

    I liked Snape more in the movies than I did in the books and I think that probably has more to do with the fact that Alan Rickman played him and I just adored Rickman as an actor.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! And right? Why did they both have to die like that :-(

      Yeah, people do like Alan Rickman, and I know people loved his Snape performance. I haven’t seen the movies, so I’m free from that influence lol.

  11. Danya @ Fine Print

    THANK YOU. I’m sorry to his fans, Severus Snape is a good character in the technical sense, but he is not a good person and I do not find him likeable in the slightest. He abuses his students and he’s straight-up racist, so. Nope. The Marauders as a group were also sketch, honestly. Like what is it about boarding school that amps up the vicious teen drama? Not cool, guys.

    1. Kristen Burns

      I agree, very well-written and complex, but I don’t find him likeable in the slightest either. But oh, yeah, the Marauders were definitely sketch too, especially James. But I wonder how much he would’ve changed had he had the chance. I feel like Remus at least regretted not stepping in more to stop them.

  12. Mikky @ Nocturnal Predators Reviews

    I’ve watched all the HP movies and tried getting through the first book in the series (which ended up a DNF at around 50%) a few years ago and I wasn’t blown away by anything. I see these interesting and detailed discussions about the series and the characters that I can’t really say anything to because I’m the black sheep in the herd who doesn’t love the subject matter :)

    1. Kristen Burns

      I get it. I actually talked about in Part 1 of my discussion how the first book is cute but not impressive, and I wouldn’t have continued the series if I hadn’t already read it all when I was younger and if it hadn’t been so popular. The books get so much better later in the series.

  13. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    I agree, book Snape is rubbish and I don’t think he did enough to redeem himself but I do think he is an intriguing character who I like to see developed in fanfiction. It’s the same way I feel about Draco. I’m intrigued by the potential because unlikable characters are so much more fun to play around with, you know? But yeah, in actual canon world Snape sucks and is not a good person. I liked that he actually had a slightly decent side but he could have done far more (and like to read fanfiction where he does and beats himself up about it).

    And Remus and Sirius always make me sad… they had such hard lives and it was so unfair. Another favourite of fanfiction (I’ve read a lot of it, ok) is seeing past rewrites where Sirius doesn’t get sent to prison and raises Harry and all the potential for him because when he comes out of Azkaban he’s still a big kid and that’s so not his fault. And Remus basically gets relegated to a second class citizen as a werewolf and how is that even fair? And not only that but he loses his best friends too. I wouldn’t have coped as well as he did. I wanted both of them to get a far better ending that they got. I really did.

    I want to go read some fanfiction now… like a lot. This will not help my reading but oh well.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Oh yeah, definitely well-written, but I don’t think what he did was enough to redeem himself either. Yes, I do see what you’re saying about the potential of unlikeable characters and I feel that way sometimes too. I don’t really read fanfic though unless it’s the kind that *could* be canon because I’m afraid I’ll get confused between what’s canon and what’s not or something, idk lol.

      Ugh, I know. I read some short fanfics about Remus and Sirius, but ones that fit what we know of the canon. Ones that show them being together but then Sirius still ends up in Azkaban. But yeah, it’s not Sirius’s fault that he’s basically still a kid. And poor Remus did lose all his friends—James and Lily were dead, and he thought Peter was dead and Sirius was a traitor. And he was def treated poorly as a werewolf. And yet he still managed to keep going and to treat others kindly. Gah, now I’m sad lol.

  14. Di @ Book Reviews By Di

    I hadn’t really thought too much about Bart Crouch Sr but you’re right – he was dealt a terrible hand. He did bad things and made the wrong decisions, but I guess that’s what it means to be human!

    Ohhh. I love Snape. :D I hadn’t thought about him in the light of some of your comments though…. I need to finish Book 7 again and reflect. He was a horrible person… But I liked some of the things that he did…

    Sirius… I have no words. I loved him too much and then he was TAKEN from me!

    Love these two HP posts! Thanks!

    1. Kristen Burns

      He really was dealt a terrible hand and put in a tough spot. I felt bad for him.

      I mean, Snape was helpful in eventually taking Voldy down, but yeah, I still think he was a horrible person. A really well-written character though.

      Thinking about Sirius is just so sad!

      Glad you liked them!

  15. Cee @ Dora Reads

    ‘…having a chronic illness is entirely different from being a werewolf…’ – Best. Sentence. Ever!!!!! XD

    It’s not possible to fully hate someone played by Alan Rickman. He was too good an actor dammit!!!!!

    On other points: I think Snape, Remus, Sirius, etc. are only really caught in snapshots in the book. They’re characters who are *so* complex that the narrow view we get of them isn’t ever going to be enough to fully get to the bottom of things, especially considering the *years* we have no info. on.

    And, I think what makes people both love and hate them is that they are so very, very human. People aren’t *all* good or *all* bad – they’re just people. And that can be both refreshing and galling to witness in fictional characters!

    Also, I’m here for all the Wolfstar angst-fluff ;)

    1. Kristen Burns

      I felt the need to clarify the chronic illness werewolf thing, just in case, haha.

      I haven’t seen the movies, so my opinion of Snape hasn’t been swayed by that lol.

      That’s a good point. We do mostly get snapshots, at least of their pasts. But still, I feel like we see enough of Snape in the present to know, if nothing else, that he does bully some of the students, which is not ok.

      But yes, I absolutely agree that possibly the best thing about this series is how human the characters are, how not a single one of them is too perfect or unflawed. All of them have made mistakes or done something wrong.

      Wolfstar 4 lyf! :-P

  16. Tizzy Brown

    I love how J K Rowling writes such complicated characters with both dark and light in them. Sirius says something to harry along the lines of “the world isn’t split into good people and death eaters”, and that’s so true. I’m still not sure about Snape. I agree with you that he was very selfish and obsessive and didn’t really redeem himself. He had a strange relationship with Harry, where he seemed to hate him but at the same time wanted to protect him. However, I do also think James was a bit of a jerk for bullying Snape. I think I grew to like Snape more from the films because he’s played by Alan Rickman, who performs him with such sass. Even when he’s being cruel I can’t help but like him. I really like Sirius of course but Remus is my favourite too. I really liked how caring he was and how honest he is with Harry, he’s a great mentor. I don’t think J K intended Wolfstar to be a thing, but I still totally ship it. Although I also like Remus/Tonks.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Exactly, NONE of the characters are perfect. They all have flaws and have made bad decisions, including our beloved Remus. I definitely agree James bullying Snape was wrong, and James seemed like kind of a jerk in general, but I just still don’t feel that made it ok for Snape to bully students, you know? But you’re right that he did seem to both hate and try to protect Harry. I’ve had other people mention that maybe there’s so much Snape love because of Alan Rickman, but I haven’t seen the movies, so I wasn’t influenced by that lol. But yes, Remus was such a great mentor and so kind to all the students! Idk if Wolfstar was intended by Rowling, but it’s what I have already accepted in my mind lol. Remus-Tonks was not bad either, but I feel like I just didn’t know Tonks well enough or something to feel strongly about that relationship? The good news is, it’s totally possible to ship both since Wolfstar could’ve happened as teens and Remus-Tonks later as adults!