After seven earlier films and novels reaching back over a decade, the Harry Potter saga came to a solid and satisfying conclusion this month in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2.
As the series closes, however, I can’t help but find a little discouragement in the fact that there will be no more Harry Potter.
True, there’s Pottermore, if you’re into that sort of thing. I feel that deep down, there has always been a part of me either waiting for the next of the Rowling novels or the next film experience since the first days of third grade. This feeling, however, is now being silenced forever.
The final movie conjures up enough awe and solemnity to serve as an appropriate finale, and has a stark contrast to the innocence within the first novel, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, read all those magical years ago.
As I was watching the final film, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of melancholy achievement: a bittersweet goodbye to a large part of my childhood.
Harry, Hermione and Ron are grown up now, and Harry has even grown the facial stubble required of all epic heroes. The time has come for him to face Lord Voldemort in a final showdown, not unlike a final duel from Luke Skywalker and his dastardly father Darth Vader.
The conflict within Part 2 is staged in a series of special effects sequences containing power and conviction that would surely make the early Pixar go absolutely bonkers.
Despite my deep longing to do so, I refuse to reveal a single crucial detail about the story itself, lest I offend the potential legions of Potter fans that are reading this article.
Besides, as far as you know, innocent moviegoer, the film may be completely different. Maybe in a bizarre twist Harry dies by Hagrid’s hand, Voldemort is triumphant and evil reigns for eternity.
Don’t let my long-winded rose-colored pretenses throw you off. I have had plenty of other childhood franchises that could make me go weak in the knees during a powerful conclusion.
Anything pertaining to Zelda, Half Life, Toy Story or even Star Wars has potential to set my heart ablaze with passionate nostalgia, and make my eyes start fiercely pouring with large, gushing tears.
I feel that these and other stories have personally affected my growing up, and that honestly my life would not be the same without them.
Perhaps this is why I analyze the ending of Harry Potter so deeply. Of the franchises that have had the most profound effects, I feel that it is the longest running and perhaps most deeply inspiring.
But let’s be honest here, you’ll miss the Harry Potter franchise, too.
Whether or not your pastor, overly protective parents or elementary school principal would let you read the Harry Potter books is none of my concern; as long as you were born on this side of the Milky Way, chances are you’ve been hearing about Harry Potter for quite some time now.
You’ve been touched by some element of the novels; you’ve heard that the author used to be homeless; you’ve seen pictures of Emma Watson you probably shouldn’t have. Whatever the case may be, our society has had an obsession with the franchise. And hopefully, you were allowed to read them. Even if you didn’t read the novels, hopefully it was up to your own personal preference, and you stood firmly against the novels for good reason.
As for those who read the novels with such fervor as me, let this humble opinions essay be a jaded reminder to you that a certain flame has been extinguished. We can no longer look forward to more from “The Boy Who Lived” and his posse.
We must forevermore re-read the broken-spined remnants from a time long ago, and will never be able to forget what actually comes at the end of book six, despite all our efforts. The series will never be new to us again, and Harry will never feel as magical as he did on the first read through.
As we move forward into a potentially less magical age, one without Hogwarts or Space Shuttles, remember the time you spent invested in Harry Potter fondly.
Let it not be a wasted time; everyone could stand to learn a few things from the series, and the good versus evil debate is one that is older than the solar system itself and will likely never be solved.
As J.K. Rowling herself said, “It does not do well to dwell upon dreams for so long that we fail to realize them as we live.”