Friday, May 17, 2013

Harry Potter and the Deathly Readalong 1: Merlin had a saggy left . . . earlobe

I know this is the last book, and I haven’t been saying this for any of these posts . . . but it’s my duty to warn you that I am about to spoil the ever-fondled Horklumps out of this book. And that means spoiling the whooooole series. So watch yourself, you person who still hasn’t read the books and/or seen the movies. (I see you there, you last unicorn, you.)

So that William Penn quote at the beginning? “Death is but crossing the world, as friends do the seas; they live in one another still”?

Just be straight with us, Rowling.

But I’m not ready to talk about that yet. NOT ready.

I just casually mentioned to my husband the other night that Rowling was getting out of control with her wand euphemisms, and he was AGHAST that I could be so horrible as to see phallic imagery in this most beloved of children’s series. And *I* was aghast that he didn’t already realize this series is chock FULL of phallic imagery. And then we argued. And then I went to Twitter, where I was sure to find support for my case. And Kayleigh came to my immediate aid with a “wands are wangs” comment. And now my husband just thinks we’re ALL dirty. (He's not wrong, ya'll.)

But I promised you penis jokes:
“He drew out his own wand and compared the lengths.” (I’ve HEARD that guys do this.)
Ron talking about a book that teaches boys how to get girls: “You’d be surprised, it’s not all about wandwork, either.” (I mean, come ON. It’s right there.)

On a more serious note, when I was reading that obituary Elphias Doge wrote for Dumbledore, I was thinking that could EASILY have been Ron writing about Harry. They met at the age of 11 on the first day at Hogwarts. Dumbledore was already notorious at the school because of something his dad did.
“Our mutual attraction was undoubtedly due to the fact that we both felt ourselves to be outsiders. . . .
Being continually outshone was an occupational hazard of being his friend.” 
SCHOOL FRIENDS. And also Dumbledore being dead still. And also Elphias Doge's dandelion hair topped with a fez. *sniffle*

And with that, I can’t avoid it anymore. Two-hundred pages in, and there have been DEATHS.

2. George’s ear (*weeps prematurely for twin things to come*)
3. Mad-Eye Moody (Meh)

**EDITED TO ADD that Laura's post reminded me Charity Burbage and Rufus Scrimgeour also died in this section. Sorry, Charity and Rufus, but I didn't care about you overly much.**


  1. Aww we both used the "I kill what you love" gif. Dammit JK for making it relevant. I was more upset about losing Mad Eye than Hedwig, probably because Mad Eye could do things that would be helpful in fighting dark wizards. They need to stop losing all the people that know what to do.

    But of course that won't happen cos JK hates us.

  2. I've always had a thing about animals dying in books and movies. My mom once was like, "Meg...don't you think it's a little worrisome that you're crying about the horse that blew up and you don't care at all about the guy who was riding it?" And I, making PERFECT sense as always, replied, "It's not real anyway. So I can cry for whoever I want to." And I've been weeping over animals ever since.

    Also, Mad-Eye wasn't a sentimental character at all. Useful, yes...but not a father figure or friend figure or any of those things that really get you in the feeler. Hedwig was a big deal, emotionally. And she didn't HAVE to die. She could have been let out of her cage at the first sign of trouble.

  3. Normally animals deaths in novels get to me, but Hedwig's doesn't. Maybe because it happened suddenly. Maybe because she's a bird and no matter how adorable she seems, birds suck. If she had been a dog, I would have been a lot more torn up

    I wasn't so much sad for Mad Eye's death as I was for those that were going to have to go on without him. and how upset Fleur sounded when she and Bill were relaying what happened.

  4. deaths ruin me for DAYS.

  5. Ohmigosh, you make such a good point about Doge and Ron and their similaritiesss. I'm so glad you're here.

    I kind of enjoy Angel thinking that we're all gross... Feels accurate :)

  6. I wonder if Ron will have a ginger dandelion head when he gets older. Look forward to THAT, Hermione.

  7. I never picked up the Ron/Doge comparison and holy shit, you are one clever cookie for making that connection. Take 1000 internet points!

    That just makes Doge's struggles at the wedding against the aunt all the more upsetting, because now I'm picturing Ron doing the same thing, refusing to acknowledge that Harry once sliced Malfoy up, or blew up his aunt or whatever nasty thing Skeeter (or future Skeeter-type writer) decides to say about him. All because he loves him so. *tears up*

    Your husband is really missing out if he's never noticed the penis jokes in HP. Also, you probably shouldn't point out all my masturbation notes from the earlier books, he probably won't let you internet hang-out with me any more.

  8. *throws 1000 Internet points on the bed and rolls around in them*

    It's really a shame for him, isn't it? And I even showed him what you said about wand wangs. He remains unconvinced and slightly wary of me in general.

  9. I didn't realize Scrimgeour was dead EVEN THOUGH I OBVIOUSLY READ THAT LINE ABOUT HIM BEING DEAD, OBVIOUSLY, until the section for next week when someone is all, Oh, he didn't give up your whereabouts before dying, Harry. And I was like, shitsters, he died?

    But, I mean, ok, the line about him being dead comes right in the middle of the bit about the Ministry falling and Death Eaters coming, so you can see how I'd gloss it over.


    I am always The Saddest over animal deaths/injuries. Watching Homeward Bound is pretty much two solid hours of sobbing. (SHADOWWWWWWW!)

    *leaves computer to go cry softly into my cat's fur*

  11. Aaaahhg, animal deaths are the worst! It's because they generally don't know why things are happening, they didn't choose to be in this dangerous situation, and ack, I'mma just cry over here for a bit.

  12. Oh yeah, Scrimgeour died and protected Harry with his final words...meh. If I feel anything about that, it's a lack of closure. As for the dirtiness, it is definitely there and I miss it ALL. Seriously, I even quoted a bit of it this week and I was all, "Oh, Ron, thinking that successful dating is all about magical skill, how SILLY." And then everyone else was like DIRTY and I was all ohhh, gotcha. I also have a bad habit of making dirty jokes ALL THE TIME without realizing it. Sigh.

  13. *flails sorrowfully on floor with dogs*

  14. Saying "the Death Eaters are coming" last is somewhat burying the lead on that one, Kingsley.

  15. Hahahaaaa...poor Scrimgeour. Well he was rude for literally his entire existence and then did one decent thing at the end. It takes more than THAT to impress us, sir.

  16. I have always wanted to do that with money, but it turns out $1000 is upsettingly small unless you get it in $5 notes. I'm hoping the 1000 internet points were enough to make that as satisfying as it always looks on film.

  17. LOL at the Deathly Death Count! Sadly-hilarious? idk man, toward the end, I was almost desensitized by the deaths... almost :(

  18. How could we have possibly, truly cared for Charity Burbage when we DIDN'T EVEN KNOW HER NAME UNTIL SHE DIED?

    YES to all of the penis jokes. I was wondering about Merlin's saggy left something-or-other. It seems a fairly strong swear considering the situation. Rowling definitely ratchets up the adult content here. :0

    If wands are wangs, what does it mean to wang chung tonight?

    also, brilliant insight re: Ron & Elphias Doge. You are so right.