of course emma you did a really good job on hermione

Ron Weasley: the gutting of a character

(Strap yourselves in, everyone- this is a very long post)

I should start this post by pointing out that I’m a big Ron Weasley fan- I like his complex character, humour, and his overall character arc. Despite what the film series did to Ron, I am not knocking Rupert Grint’s portrayal of the character- Grint is a talented actor, and he did a fine job with what was given to him. The problem is that he was given very little in comparison with Radcliffe and Watson. Ron Weasley is a complex character that arguable deserved much better treatment than he was given in the film series.

In the post, I’ll be looking over the cool, bad-ass and interesting actions of the character that were given over to Hermione or otherwise changed in the films. Sometimes it isn’t just the dialogue, but the framing of how the audience is supposed to react to the character of Ron Weasley.

I should also point out that I like Hermione a lot- she’s one of my favourite characters in the books, but I wanted to see the three awesome characters in the golden trio that I knew from the books, not two awesome characters and a comedic sidekick. Emma Watson is a great actor, and did a fantastic job of portraying Hermione. I just wish that the characterisation of Ron had been given as much thought as that of Hermione. During the course of the film series, Hermione’s character was a victim of the ‘Legolas effect’, a term coined by the reviewer ‘The Dom’ in his Harry Potterathon video series. Hermione was given dialogue, actions and traits of other characters. 

One of the main themes of this is that film Hermione was given significant portions of Ron’s dialogue, character and traits. In effect, the character of Hermione was changed from a flawed but brilliant character into a near-perfect character with few flaws if any. Ron, on the other hand, was changed from a compelling flawed but lovable character into a comedic sidekick who the other two hung around with for no real reason.

Let’s start off with ‘The Philosophers Stone’. In the scene with Devils Snare, the golden trio are trying to discover a way to get past the plant. In the books, Hermione is trying to remember how to stop it using a rhyme that Professor Sprout told them. Harry then finishes the rhyme, pointing out that Devils Snare hates fire. However, Hermione (in the heat of the moment) forgets that she is a witch and exclaims that they don’t have anything to burn. Ron then loudly reminds her that she is, in fact, in possession of magical powers, and Hermione then conjured up flames to get rid of Devils Snare. It’s a scene that highlights the different strengths of the three heroes- Hermione’s brains, Harry resourcefulness, and Ron’s common-sense.

In the film adaptation, the Devil Snare releases a person when they do nothing. Hermione tells the other two this, but only Harry listens to her, leaving Ron trapped above them in a state of terror, thinking both of his friends have been destroyed by the plant. Hermione then remembers that Devils Snare hates sunlight (I don’t know why it was changed) and she sends light into the plant, which releases Ron. We are then treated to this little bit of dialogue;

Ron: Good thing we didn’t panic

 

(Harry and Hermione glare at Ron)

 

Harry: Good thing Hermione pays attention in Herbology

Notice the framing is changed. Instead of Ron being the one with common sense and reminding Hermione that she can conjure flames, in the film adaptation, Ron is the loud-mouthed one who doesn’t listen to his friends’ advice and then has the gall to act like he was being sensible. The audience is expected to laugh at Ron’s incompetence and praise Hermione’s resourcefulness, as opposed to the book where the reader was encouraged to see the different strengths of the three heroes.

Next, in ‘Chamber of Secrets’, there is the scene in Hagrids hut where the connotations of the slur ‘mudblood’ is explained. In the book, Ron is the one who explains the usage of the term, since Hermione (being relatively new to the wizarding world) didn’t know what it meant. She knew that it was ‘really rude, of course’ due to the reactions of Ron and the Gryffindor Quidditch team.

In the films, however, it is Hermione who explains the connotations of the slur. What does Ron do in this scene? Vomits slugs into a large bucket whilst looking very pale and clammy.

Ron is framed as comedic relief whilst Hermione gets the exposition about the concept of ‘blood-purity’ in the wizarding world. It also implies that Hermione either learnt about this from a textbook, from a teacher, or has already experienced this already since she was introduced to the wizarding world.

Next is ‘Prisoner of Azkaban’. This one scene is one of the bigger changes that the films made in regards to the friendship dynamic of the golden trio. In the book, when Sirius Black is cornering Harry, Ron and Hermione in the Shrieking Shack, Ron stands in between Harry and Sirius and (on a broken leg and clearly in a lot of pain) declares that, if Black wants to kill Harry, he’ll have to kill Ron and Hermione first. It’s one of Ron’s standout moments in the book series, showing his loyalty to his friends and his brave nature as a character.

So how does this scene get translated on screen? Hermione stands between Black and Harry and says the cool line. Ron mumbles and whimpers on the floor in the background.

Once again, one character is made to be seen as brave, cool and heroic, whilst the other is stripped of one of their coolest moments. Not only does this scene remove one of Ron’s coolest moments, but it also changes the entire friendship dynamic between the three heroes. Up until this point, the films had largely kept to the idea that Ron was Harry’s best friend and was, more or less, on equal footing with Hermione as Harry confidant and ally. However, by switching the line and bad-ass action over to Hermione, the film series begins to cement the idea that Hermione is Harry’s best friend, and that Ron is more of a hanger-on rather than a steadfast friend or ally for the other two. This is something that would become quite common in the next few films.

In ‘The Goblet of Fire’, there is an interesting little scene where Ron talks to Harry about asking Fleur Delacour to the Yule Ball. In the books, he largely describes the whole thing (albeit with Ginny explaining the main points to Harry at the start). It shows that Ron was utterly embarrassed, confused and startled by his own decision.

In the films, however, it goes like this-

Ginny: It’s okay, Ron. It’s alright. It doesn’t matter.

Harry: What happened to you?

Ginny: He just asked Fleur Delacour out.

Hermione: What?

Harry: What did she say?

Hermione: She said yes?

Ron: Don’t be silly. There she was, just walking by… you know how I like it when they walk… I couldn’t help it! It just sort of slipped out.

Ginny: Actually, he sort of screamed at her. It was a bit frightening.

Ron enters the scene literally being led into the common room by the arm by Ginny, and then (half-dazed) explains part of it. It doesn’t help that Ginny ends it with a one-liner that pokes fun at Ron’s immaturity around girls.

See the difference? Ron’s agency in his own story is largely cut out and played almost entirely for laughs. Hermione is not, understandably, given Ron’s lines in this bit, but in the book she wasn’t even in the room when this was brought up.

Next we have ‘The Order of the Phoenix’. In the scene where Harry reunites with Ron and Hermione at Grimmauld Place, it is explained to Harry why they couldn’t contact him during the summer. In the book, both Ron and Hermione explain that Dumbledore made both Ron and Hermione swear not to tell Harry anything over the summer. It shows that they both understand that Harry would be angry at not knowing anything over the summer holidays, as well as highlighting the close bond that the three of them share.

In the film adaptation, this explanation is given to Hermione, and Ron largely stands in the background and says very little. This highlights the friendship dynamic of the three changing in the film adaptation. They are not three friends as much as the boy who lived, the brightest witch of her age, and their comedic sidekick who tags along.

In ‘The Half-Blood Prince’ ending scene (after Dumbledore’s funeral), Ron and Hermione say that they’ll go with Harry on his quest for the Horcruxes. Hermione says that ‘You said to us once before, that there was time to turn back if we wanted to. We’ve had time, haven’t we?’ and Ron follows her up, stating that ‘We’re with you whatever happens’. It highlights the friendship between the three, and shows their commitment to each other. They are clearly a trio here.

I’ve already talked about the film’s version of this scene in a previous post (see ‘Ron Weasley and the inability to stand next to your friends: an issue with scene staging’ at https://www.tumblr.com/dashboard/blog/headcanonsandmore/166883432059) but it does bear repeating. Hermione says her bit about them all going after the Horcruxes. Ron sits in the background during this scene and I’m not even sure if he had any dialogue.

I understand that Rupert Grint was ill with Swine Flu when they filmed this, but it’s not that difficult to give him dialogue and then edit it in in post-production. If you can do it with computer generated characters like Dobby, then you can certainly do it with a physical person.

Finally, in ‘The Deathly Hallows’, there is the scene wherein Ron briefly leaves the other two in their hunt for the Horcruxes. I’ll give you the two different bits of dialogue for comparison.

Book-

Ron: We thought you knew what you were doing! We thought Dumbledore had told you what to do, we thought you had a real plan!

Hermione: Ron! Take off the locket, Ron. Please take it off. You wouldn’t be talking like this if you hadn’t been wearing it all day.

Harry: Leave the Horcrux.

Ron: What are you doing?

Hermione: What do you mean?

Ron: Are you staying, or what?

Hermione: I – Yes – yes, I’m staying. Ron, we said we’d go with Harry, we said we’d help –

Ron: I get it. You choose him.

Hermione: Ron, no – please – come back, come back!

Movie:

Ron: You don’t know why I listen to the radio, do you? To make sure I don’t hear Ginny’s name. Or Fred, or George, or Mum.

Harry: You think I’m not listening too? You think I don’t know how this feels?

Ron: No, you don’t know how it feels! Your parents are dead! You have no family!

Hermione: Stop!

Harry: Fine then, go! Go then!

Ron: [to Hermione] And you? Are you coming or are you staying? Fine. I get it. I saw you two the other night.

Hermione: Ron, that’s – that’s nothing!

Notice the slight difference in how Hermione replies to Ron’s query as to what she is doing. In the book, Hermione makes it very clear that she is staying with Harry because she said that she would help in destroying the Horcruxes. She clearly frames it as an act of loyalty to her friend as opposed to anything else. In the films, however, she stutters over her answer, making the audience wonder as to whether Hermione is not entirely honest with Ron in her answer. Instead of being a climactic moment where the unity between the trio is broken (albeit briefly), the average movie-goer who might not have read the books would see this as a scene that forges onto the golden trio a ‘one-dimensional love triangle’ (as Mugglenet put it in this article-http://www.mugglenet.com/2015/09/7-times-hermione-granger-took-ron-weasleys-lines-in-the-movies/).

The point I am trying to make is that the systematic changes in dialogue, actions and personality traits that the films made to the character of Ron Weasley was detrimental to Ron’s character, Hermione’s character, and the friendship dynamic of the golden trio as a whole. Instead of being a group of three friends, the films made Harry and Hermione the main heroes whilst Ron was relegated to the role of a comedic side-kick who was kept around by his friends out of a mix of apathy and pity.

Ron Weasley is not a perfect character, but that is because he’s human. Humans are not perfect- we are flawed. The flaws of Ron’s character were what made him engaging and interesting to read about. Whilst Harry was the leader and Hermione the brains, Ron was the common-sense part of the trio, always cracking jokes to alleviate the tension and ground the other two.

The book version of Ron was a flawed but lovable character. The film version of Ron had all of Ron’s flaws without many of the positive aspects of the character that made him so engaging to begin with. Instead of a loyal, kind and dedicated friend, movie Ron is the sort of person that book Ron was terrified of becoming- an incompetent oaf who was kept around by his friends out of pity and amusement (another tumblr blog @accioron puts it much better than I can- http://accioron.tumblr.com/post/112530209613).  

Rupert Grint is a fantastic actor, and should have been given the opportunity to play Ron Weasley as he was in the books. A combination of weird script-writing, bad scene-framing and a lack of decent character development left Grint with barely anything to work with, meaning the book version of Ron was a much-missed part of the film adaptations. I don’t blame Rupert Grint for this- he was doing the best he could with what he was given. He was doing his job- I just wished the film-makers had done the same.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Recap: June 15th/16th

So as some of you who read my tags may have guessed, I went to see the play again this week. I wanted to hit a nice round number before my first anniversary of seeing Cursed Child next Wednesday, and I’ve been hearing such good things about how the new cast are developing that I couldn’t resist. I was not disappointed.

I’d been told that the show is almost unrecognisable from how it was on the 24th and 25th of May, and while that is not entirely accurate, it is so much more than what it was. My impression, particularly on the 24th, was of something raw and skeletal, that needed filling out. The bare bones were all there, but there wasn’t much detail, simply because they hadn’t had very much time to explore. And now they’re 13 shows in, the detail is definitely coming.

I’m not going to do a full on line-by-line recap, but I have too much to say not to write something, so I think this will just be a summary of things I loved from each of the actors, and maybe a little bit about a couple of my favourite scenes. I’ll attempt to keep this short (wish me luck).

Keep reading

Review of Harry Potter and the cursed child (play)

Hello!. So on Sunday 1st January i finally got to see Harry Potter and the cursed child in the Palace Theatre in London. And here is what i think:

It was absolutly incredible!!! One of the best shows i have seen so far (and i saw a lot of shows on west end). It was beautifully artistic and it nearly made me cry several times which means a lot.

The Plot

I know a lot of people don’t like the plot, but it worked so great on stage. I loved the plot, it was exciting until the end. It is not perfect of course (there is nothing that’s perfect not even the original books) but the plot was very good, i loved the time travelling and it served it’s main purpose: character development. Other than the books or fantastic beast cursed child is not about adventure or about the world and the plot so much, but it’s about interesting characters and character development, mainly about the development of Harrys and Albus’ father son relationship. So the main focus is not on the plot, but on the characters. So i will move on to the characters.

 

 

The characters/actors

I saw the whole main cast (which made me really happy) so here we go:

 

Harry James Potter

I saw Jamie Parker as Harry Potter and i can’t say enough how amazing he is. His performance was one of the best performances i ever got to see on a stage and this man is so talented it’s not normal any more. His portrayal of Harry’s pain about his relationship to Albus and about his haunting memories of the past was beautiful. His screams in Harry‘s nightmare scenes were bonechilling and we see how much Harry as a young adult with all this preasure on him is still haunted by his past. At the beginning of the play Jamie plays Harry very sorrowless and happy, we see what a loving father he is and Jamie Parker has great charisma on stage. With the developement of the plot however, Harry gets more and more stressed, there is a lot of preasure on him and Jamie‘s portrayal gets darker and he shows us the troubled but beautifully complex and very emotional human being. We see how much he loves his son and is trying to be a good father, but he has no idea how to show Albus his love. Harry as an interesting character is beautifully written and Jamie Parker brought Harry from the books to life on stage. I think he is perfectly casted and one of the most talented actors on the west end.

 

 

Albus Severus Potter

I saw Sam Clemmett as Albus Potter and he was amazing. His portrayal of Albus shows how angry Albus was and we understand why he is so angry. Everyone expects him to be like what they think Harry was: a perfect human being (which Harry of course wasn’t ). It must be very very hard to see that all your siblings go to Griffindor and are popular and you are sorted into Slytherin. He makes Harry‘s fame responsible for his suffering (and bullying in school) and that’s why he behaves the way to Harry as he does. He doesn’t want to see the famous Harry Potter he wants to see his father which is very hard for both of them. The most important scene in the whole play is the blanket scene in part one act one. The scene was tragically beautifully played by both Sam and Jamie and you could see that they both understood their characters perfectly.

Sam had great on stage chemistry with Jamie and Poppy (Ginny ) and with Anthony (Scorpius) of course. These two boys were brilliant together. Sam is an amazing and very young actor and we will definetly see more of him in te futute.

 

 

 

Ginny Potter

I saw Poppy Miller as Ginny and she was awesome (you will hear this a lot). In the movies i never really liked Ginny and i don’t think Bonny Wright did much for her character, it was so refreshing to see the strong and fierce Ginny we love so much from the books. Poppy portrays Ginny as a strong woman, a loving mother and as a very supportive wife (she has one moment when she doubts Harry, but this flaw and her apology just made her character more interesting and beautiful). She and Jamie had amazing chemistry and the kiss was so adorable. My favourite Ginny line, which is perfectly presented by Poppy, is when she answeres Draco with “my son is missing too!” Poppy literally screams this line and it’s such a strong moment (Draco‘s /Alex’ reaction is priceless).

 

 

Hermione Jean Granger

I saw Noma Dumenzweni as Hermione and you can tell me whatever you want but this woman was born to play Hermione Granger. She is one of those very rare actors/actresses who have such an authority when they enter the stage. Her Hermione was so strong and fierce as i remembered her from the books and she played such an amazing Minister of Magic (i really can’t imagine Emma Watson playing Hermione as Minister of Magic, it really wouldn’t fit for me as i always found Emma to be not strong and bossy enough to play Hermione). But Noma also has some beautiful soft scenes in the play e.g. in her kissing scene with Ron (they are a perfect couple) and this one scene after they changed back time and she sees Rose and then fully realized that her daughter didn’t excist in the other universe and they share a very heartbreaking hug. I don’t care about her skin colour or that some idiots think that she is too ugly to play Hermione, she was incredible and perfect in my eyes.

 

 

Ron(ald) Weasley

I saw Paul Thorne as Ron Weasley and it was such a delight watching him. Ron has a lot of funny moments in the play , which paul played masterly, he is trying to be the light in those dark moments, but at the same time he is still the good friend we saw in the books. He stands up for his wife and his friend and Paul made me love Ron even more. He had amazing chemistry with Noma and their kissing scene was so cute and heartwarming.

 

 

Rose Granger Weasley

I saw Cherrelle Skeete as Rose. When reading the script book first i didn’t like Rose that much, but Cherrele managed to let me see the Hermione part more in her and i actually really liked Rose in the play. She gives a very energetic performance and had some good moments with Scorpius. I think i saw not enough of her to properly judge her, but i think she is a very talented young actress.

 

 

Draco Malfoy

I saw Alex Price as Draco and he was amazing. In the first part he portrays Draco as we all know him from the books (at the beginning he is a little brat), but the more we get into the play we see the real Draco, he loves his son more than anything like Harry does (and yes they have a lot of father son issues too) and he gets more and more in touch with Harry, Ginny and Ron and Hermione as he has the same problem as Harry, his son is missing. To see Draco working with the golden trio makes a really great dynamic at the end of the play. I also love that through Alex incredible acting we see how lonely Draco always has felt and that he indeed is not a bad human being but a very interesting and developed character.

 

 

Scorpius Malfoy

I saw Anthony Boyle as Scorpius Malfoy and i tell you if Jamie Parker wouldn’t have been such an incredible actor this young man would have totally stolen the show. It’s very hard to describe Anthony’s acting and his high voice but this young actor is something special. I don’t think anyone came out of the theatre not totally in love with Scorpius Malfoy. Anthony has perfect comedic timing and he was so talented in the more silent scenes (i swear i saw a tear in his eyes). Whoever will play the part on Broadway has some big shoes to fill and in my opinion has to go with a totally different interpretation of Scorpius because you can’t imitate Anthony Boyle.



Before this blog gets even longer i won’t go into detail about the other actors, but i have to especially mention Esther Smith as Delphi and Paul Bennett as Snape for doing an especially great job.

 

 

The special effects

Please don’t ask me how they do it! The special effects are incredible, they are like real magic and with some tricks i still have no clue how they do it . I was sitting there with my jaw open and it was just magical. I can’t even say what i loved best it was all so amazing. But please never let the Dementors near me again. They were so creepy and frightening, amazingly made, but so creepy, not to even mention their terrifying screams. I never felt that horrified in my life before, i guess that’s the biggest compliment i can make the person, whoever designed them.

 

 

 

The costumes

All of the costumes were beautiful and fitted the characters very well. I loved how flowy the cloakes were, what looked really good in the dance numbers. I especially liked the costumes for the alternate Voldemort timeline, they were all black and so beautifully elegant especially Scorpius‘, Draco’s and Snape’s costumes.

 

 

 

Things i didn’t like

There wasn’t much that i didn’t like and it’s really just nitpicking, but every great thing always has some flaws that’s normal.

First of all i had some problems with some specific actors, mainly with the actor who played Bane. He was so over the top that it was nearly hilarious to me. Maybe he had a bad day or just is not my cup of tea.

As much as i loved Paul Bennett as Snape his voice was way too special to play Voldemort as well, it was a little bit outputting as it was very clear that it was the same actor. Normally theatre can hide it very well when an actor plays multiple roles, but that really doesn’t work with Paul Bennett. I really loved his Snape (which means a lot form e as a hardcore Snape fan), but because he was so special and fitted so well to Snape, it was to me as Snape tried to pretend he is Voldemort, which felt really weird to me. And i really didn’t like that they went with no nose ,new body Voldemort as up to my knowlegde he only looks like this since book four. I guess they made it so the audience can recognize him better.

The last things i wasn’t too fond of (but didn’t hate either) were the Trolley Witch (it was very cleverly made and funny just a little bit too much for me personally) and Delphi. I loved Esthers portrayal of her especially at the beginning and i don’t have anything against the idea of Voldemort having a child and overall i liked Delphi, but they could have developed her character a little bit more at the end, that’s all.  As i said nitpicking.




All in all it was one of the best days of my life and the show is amazing and i love it with all my heart. If you have a chance to see it: DO IT!!! It is one of the most beautiful Harry Potter related things i have seen and please don’t judge it too soon by just reading the script. The script is very empty without seeing this wonderful show bringing it to life

I know this blog is very long, but i hope you enjoyed <3

HP rant

Before you proceed: This is tagged as anti-Harmony for a reason. While I remain civil and polite in my rant I do ship the actual canon ships so proceed at your own risk. If you feel like hating on me despite my fair warning, well, I seriously don’t care.

I read the Harry Potter news yesterday night and the truth is that I’m still really shocked and also pretty angry. First and foremost the series ended years ago so for me it seems pointless to drop a bomb like that now when everyone’s already moved on from the shipping drama. I also don’t understand why JKR wants to suddenly change YEARS of careful work since she said both Romione and Hinny were set up from the very first book and was slowly developed from there. Was she drunk the entire time she wrote the 7 books? I just don’t get how can she regret something that was carefully planned for years. Those two ships did not happen on a whim and there are pretty good reasons it happened like that and not the other way around.

In my opinion for the series to take a Harmony path the entire heptology should be rewritten because there was never anything going on between Harry and Hermione. Of course I’m talking about the books because that’s what I consider canon; we all know David Yates ships Harmony – that’s why I’m so angry at the movies, the director’s job should have been to adapt canon things and not make up non-canon scenes for a non-canon pairing and in the meanwhile destroy both Romione and Hinny the actual canon and endgame ships. Also the fact that Dan and Emma has better chemistry together than Dan/Bonny and Rupert/Emma doesn’t help either. But I repeat: What I consider canon are the books and not the movies so I’m gonna talk about that.

Back to the main topic: Harry’s and Hermione’s relationship remained entirely platonic the entire time and no one can convince me otherwise, even Harry himself said that Hermione is like a sister to him he never had. There was no romantic spark whatsoever and I don’t think they could have had a long-lasting relationship with the way things are written. Angry Harry in book 5 is the perfect example. When he shouts Hermione immediately backs away and apologizes when she didn’t do anything wrong. She can’t deal with is mood swings, the only one who can do that is Ginny. She spats back at him and either responds with sarcasm or shouts back which totally surprises him but it works. Also Harry and Ginny both know what it is to be possessed by Voldemort and they both had been through some serious shit; that’s why I believe Ginny is the only one who can be his support on the long run. She simply knows how to deal with him. Not to mention their personalities are perfect match: They are both passionate about the same things and has same values in general. Harry and Hermione together doesn’t have this similarity nor do they have actual chemistry.

Ron and Hermione had a slow-going development. It started with bickering that slowly turned into flirting which they didn’t even realize at first. Seeing them falling in love over the course of so many books was just so satisfying for me as a reader, I love how they complement each other; what one of them lacks the other surely has it and vica versa. Hermione always had low self-esteem and she needs Ron who can wholeheartedly cherish her and show her how important she as a person. There is also one thing: even though Ron and Harry were always best friends Ron always felt inferior to him and outshined by him. If Harry were to get together with Hermione that would be another thing adding up to his inferior complex. I’m so glad that this didn’t happen and I’m so glad the books actually finished unusually: the main protagonist not getting together with the lead female.

I still stand by my opinion: The entire heptology should be rewritten for a possible Harmony ending, all interactions and developments should be changed since it’s clear from at least the 4th book that Ron and Hermione are endgame. I never really understood those who shipped Harmony seriously. Like… wasn’t it obvious they won’t be together? But whatever. Those two are perfect as friends but are simply not right for each other as romantic partners. They don’t “click” together.

The thing is that Hinny and Romione is STILL canon and Harmony is STILL non-canon so I don’t worry about it that much; I just simply don’t understand how can JKR basically take back what she said about Romione and Hinny being soulmates. There is a reason she wrote it like that. She could have done it differently. She didn’t.

anonymous asked:

Hermione isn't black 😞

Hm…

Well, I must admit I was a bit taken aback when this was the very first comment to come from my ‘Hermione’ piece, but I suppose I’m not surprised.

I understand that there has been much discourse for a while now over the color of a beloved heroine’s skin. To be honest, I remember the first time I’d seen art of a black Hermione and thought “Wait she doesn’t look like that…”

Of course, I had grown up watching the lovely Emma Watson portray this character for years. When ‘The Sorcerer’s Stone’ came out, I saw the movie before reading the books, and obviously seeing these characters on the screen influenced the way I imagined them in my mind as I read. This was how Hermione was represented, so of course that was how she was to me. And I imagine this is much the same for you, Nonny?

But indulge me while we take a moment to look at the way Hermione is canonically represented in the books. 

This is the very first time we meet Hermione, and the only solid traits we have to go on are “bushy brown hair” and “large front teeth.” Nothing on skin color whatsoever. This description stands true through the remaining six books, with the only change being her teeth size in GOF. Never at any point in time is her skin color mentioned. The closest we get to it is in POA…

Obviously, “very brown” can mean plenty of different things: tan, freckly, etc. It can also very well mean true and natural brown (read: black) skin, and plenty of people have chosen to let it mean that to them personally. 

I’m not trying to say that black Hermione is officially cannon. But I’m not saying that white Hermione is cannon either. The truth is, this is still a fictional character. If it were, say, a historical person who was very much white, then yes I would generally expect them to choose an actor who looks as similar to them as possible. But Hermione is not a historical figure as much as we may feel she is alive. And as such, she does not have as much of an image set in stone that she must be conformed to.

You might say, “But the original sketch Rowling did of the characters had a white Hermione, AND Hermione in the movies was still white, and if Rowling agreed with the casting, then it must be accurate, right?”

Well, yes. And no. If we really wanted to get into it, we must acknowledge that really not all of the books characters were portrayed preciously to the letter in the films: Dan keeps his natural blue eyes in the films even though we all know Harry’s were green, and Rupert is a bit shorter and stockier than Ron who was tall, long-nosed, and gangling. Neville was blonde for crying out loud, but you don’t see Matt dying his hair. 

Emma was chosen to play Hermione because she was the best young actress for the job although even Rowling herself didn’t approve 100% right away, thinking young Emma was way too pretty until she met her in person and discovered her to be the best fit for the role. In the same way, Noma Dumezweni was the best actress for playing Hermione in TCC. 

Now please don’t take all this as me trying to attack you or your personal vision of this character, Nonny. Ultimately what I’m saying is that no one should have to limit their views of a fictional character - especially one as excellent and inspiring as Hermione Granger - when so many more levels of inspiration can be opened when we are allowed to view them in a manor that represents so many differently skinned people! 

If someone wants to view Hermione as white, great! If someone wants to view her as black, awesome! If someone wants to view her as Asian, Indian, or anything in between, more power to ‘em! Personally, my view of Hermione switches between white and black half the time.

Nonny, you have perfect liberty to imagine a fictional character to look any way you want. All I’m asking is that you extend that same liberty to people who may view that character a little differently. Because regardless of her skin color, we can all still love a character like Hermione!

And after all, Rowling herself said…

So if black Hermione is good enough for the creator of the character and the Wizarding World, then certainly it’s good enough for me!

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