SPOILER EDITION – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

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– – Spoiler Warning – –

This review contains spoilers.
Do not continue without having read the source material first.
Some assembly required. Batteries not included.
By reading this review the reader releases Reading Over The Shoulder from all responsibility and liability for any and all spoilage experienced due to this article.
Viewer discretion is advised.

Here is the nitty gritty spoiler ridden review of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. If you haven’t read the script yet, leave and do so now. And yes, I know I’m repeating myself but I’m trying to build up the word count in the beginning so that nothing is accidentally spoiled due to the summary WordPress does in the Reader. This should be enough. On with the show.

Ok, so the alternate/expanded version of the closing chapter of HP#7 that is in this script just felt awkward. It’s familiar, but just felt wrong. If it really needed to be in there, it would have been nice if it hadn’t really been changed much.

Harry is such an annoying character…..and not in the good way. He’s slow, arrogant, and helpless until it’s fighting the bad guy and then he’s suddenly uber good. For having his name in the title, he wasn’t what I would consider a “main character.” At most he was an important secondary character.

Ginny felt forgotten.

Harry and Ginny’s kids are as dumb as bricks. James is a jerk, just like his father and grandfather. Lily is mostly forgotten, but comes across as the “princess” of the family. Lastly, Albus is such a confusing character. He’s happy and then sad and then conflicted and then bitter and then depressed and then violent and then emo and then happy and then sad. He’s basically a “daddy issues” poster child and no one can understand how or why. And all the conflict about him being in Slytherin is lame and forced. It also doesn’t feel like he has any of the attributes of Slytherin. Where’s the ambition? Cunning?

Ron felt forced. Sort of like they didn’t really know what he’s supposed to do or be so they created this persona that didn’t seem to match up well with his previous personality. He was never a Fred or George, so why make him into one? He’s managing Weasley Wizard Wheezes but he also stayed home? He tells jokes and does inappropriate things at inappropriate times? I never got that from him in the books.

The choice to make Hermione the Minister of Magic seemed…..odd. Not that she couldn’t do the job, or it wasn’t in her personality, it just felt too ambitious for her. She’s never wanted to be a leader, she always wanted to be an activist to get things done. Ya, it’s possible, but it felt a little off.

Draco was spot on. Everything he did felt like a natural progression for his character. Seriously my new favorite character of the series……behind that of his son, who is even more awesome.

Scorpius Malfoy is a real person to me. He’s got plenty of weaknesses and strengths. The rumors of him being Voldemort’s child is more than a bit weak, story wise. Way too much focus was put on that. He’s nothing like Voldemort and is too much like Draco. As soon as it was brought up I knew it wasn’t real. Harry of all people should have known this and if he had a brain would have worked to squash them on a personal level. Instead Harry is just a Ministry robot….no surprise there.

Now, as for the storyline. I’ve poked many holes in it already but there is still more that can be poked.

So Albus never showed any signs that being the son of Harry Potter was difficult before going to Hogwarts? It’s not like he was kept in a cupboard for a decade or anything. Then we get to him being in Slytherin, when he really should have been in Hufflepuff with Scorpius. Neither were Slytherin material. And why would all the other Slytherins hate them too? You’d think there would be other kids who would want to be their friends because of the rumors or because he’s the son of Potter and isn’t in Gryffindor. Why did Albus choose Slytherin? The assumption is because of Scorpius, but it then goes back to why did Scorpius get into Slytherin.

Time travel. It is the worst plot device ever conceived. I think I remember reading something that said that time travel is the crutch of a lazy author. With time travel there are no rules. Anything can happen or be undone. It’s filled with paradoxes and contradiction.

For example, they go back in time and disarm Cedric during the first task. Then they go back and enlarge him during the second task. But when they go back in time to undo it because the future they created is horrible they go back to the first task and shield him. They return again the the alternate present. They then go back to the 2nd task and shield him again……but if they failed to disarm him in the first task, and didn’t go to a slightly altered future, then it’s quite likely they would never have attempted the second time or done something else. How would they know they needed to humiliate Cedric?

On top of that, if Scorpius can remember his past when in alternate versions of the present, then his timeline is intact. He is from those other times and not from the alternate timeline or he would remember his alternate timeline. So, why did Albus disappear when returning to a present where his alternate self didn’t exist? His timeline should be as intact as Scorpius’s so he shouldn’t have disappeared.

Lastly, how can you return to a timeline in which you never went back in time in the first place? If Albus and Scorpius never went back in time then there should be two of them when they “return” from the past. But they don’t, they’re the only ones. So what happened to the alternate versions of Albus and Scorpius? Their experiences with time travel are inconsistent with those of Harry and Hermione in HP#3.

Time travel sucks and shouldn’t be messed with except under very specific and controlled situations…..which is basically NEVER!

Now, the question is, did Voldemort ever have a child? Is it even plausible? And would he choose Bellatrix?

First, I don’t believe that Voldemort would have the sexual desires that would normally lead to a child. However, if there was a reason for him to have a child then I could see him performing the functions to create a child. Why would he need a child? If the child was to be used for some dark purpose, likely to extend his own life, then it would be plausible. Would he choose Bellatrix? No, I don’t think he would. I don’t think he would trust her nor do I think he would be willing to give her that much power. It’s far more likely that he’d choose someone in secret.

While reading, I honestly thought that if Voldemort had a child the mostly likely candidate would be Albus. He fit the moods and looks far better than Scorpius. The green eyes could have been from Lily still because Voldemort’s new body was made with Harry’s blood so it would have been an interesting twist. It would also explain the hesitant relationship between Harry and Albus, and it would explain why Albus ended up in Slytherin being literally Slytherin’s Heir.

The story that Mr Lestrange would tell Delphi (or whatever her name is) that Voldemort is her father would likely be a lie done to further the cause. With Voldemort’s child few remaining Death Eaters would have a ray of hope and the group could continue….in a diminished capacity. If Bellatrix had lied to him saying it was Voldemort’s he would have probably believed her, but some other guy was likely the father. (Neither Voldy or Mr. Lestrange.)

Harry and company watching Voldemort kill his parents is profoundly disturbing. Nuff, said.

Well, now that that’s off my chest I’m going back to reading the books……because the book is almost always better.

Robert


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SPOILER EDITION – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

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