Watermelon Roses

A collection of random thoughts, commentaries, and journaling. There is a lot to explore here, including links to other sites of mine. These are mostly for my own benefit, but guests are welcome to browse and explore as much or as little as they like.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Our UK version with the adult cover.

Let's muse over Harry Potter theories, shall we? Be warned, if you have not yet read this book and plan to do so, this post contains many spoilers. Read ahead at your own risk!


I was given this book on its release date while we were in England. It was the perfect gift, and Justin and I immediately started arguing about the logistics of who would get to read it and when. Since Layth and Maya get most of my attention, it was determined that Justin could read it whenever he felt like putting away his Gameboy, with the condition that I could take it whenever I would sneak off to nurse the baby. He could also read it until he was ready for bed, but he had to put it outside my door before he went to sleep so that I could have it first thing in the morning. With this method, Justin finished it in three days, and I finished it in four. Once Justin finished, he urged me to hurry because he wanted to talk about it.

The first thing he asked me when I finished was whether or not I had cried when Dumbledore died. I hadn't, because I had been so sure he wasn't really dead. I kept expecting him to reappear at any moment until the tomb appeared and his picture joined the pictures of other deceased headmasters in his office. By that time, I was sad, but the tear-inspiring shock had passed. I wanted to know why Dumbledore didn't speak from his picture like the other headmasters did, especially given Harry's distress. Justin pointed out that he had only just died, after all, so was probably very tired. Somehow, I accepted that at the time. We hoped that Snape was still really on the side of good, rather than evil, though it seemed a stretch, considering that he had just killed Dumbledore. We speculated that perhaps Snape had to sacrifice Dumbledore to prevent Voldemort from becoming suspicious. And RAB? No idea. I wondered briefly if Snape could have had a different name or if RAB was an acronym, but decided those possibilities were unlikely.

A friend of mine thinks it wasn't Dumbledore at all who died, but Wormtail under a spell. Wormtail's silver hand may have caused a problem, explaining why Dumbledore's hand was blackened and shriveled and unable to be healed. He also mentioned that the things he said while drinking the potion sounded more like Wormtail than Dumbledore, and that it would also explain his begging Snape for mercy. I don't remember him begging for mercy or exactly what he said while drinking the potion, so I want to reread the book with that theory in mind. My arguments were that the picture appeared in his office after he died, that he froze Harry to save him when the Deatheaters were coming up the stairs, and that it would have had to be Wormtail throughout the whole book, but he had the subtle humor and gentle manner that could only be Dumbledore's. Wormtail could never have pulled off that personality. My friend argues that while the picture did appear, we never saw Dumbledore speak from it, so maybe it's a fake. He isn't sure how Dumbledore got his personality to come across, but thinks it's rather more complicated than a polyjuice potion. He's fairly certain the whole thing was a setup of some sort to make Voldemort think that Dumbledore is dead and Snape is loyal. As for RAB ... Regulus Black! That one never even occurred to me. Regulus was Sirius's brother. I'm thinking now that I'm going to have to read the whole series again. Too much time has passed and I've forgotten too much.

I have another friend who believes that Harry himself is the last horcrux. Perhaps Voldemort never really tried to kill him, but instead intentionally transferred a part of his soul into Harry. I need to reread what was said about horcruxes now to see whether I think that would be possible. I do vaguely remember Voldemort being able to see things through Harry, so maybe he did it so that he could keep an eye on things in Hogwarts. I think this is an interesting theory, but it seems that Voldemort has tried to kill Harry more than once since he started at Hogwarts, and I'm not convinced he'd do that if Harry were a horcrux, assuming people can be horcruxes. Perhaps he was only pretending to try to kill Harry all those times, to make Dumbledore and his people work even harder to keep him safe, thus keeping Voldemort alive, as well. If this theory were true, Voldemort could never be killed unless Harry died, as well. Oh, the horror! Mike, this is an interesting theory, to be sure, but I have to say that I like the other theory better, as it sounds like it will have a happier ending for all but Wormtail.

I'm going to reread the book, but not until I finish This Present Darkness and Piercing the Darkness, by Frank Peretti. The library is no doubt getting annoyed with me for renewing these books for what seems like the umpteenth time (I was going to say gazillionth, but that's such an exaggeration. Unlike umpteenth, of course.) I may even reread the first five Harry Potter books, as well. Once I get back to the Half-Blood Prince, though, I'll read it slower and I may revisit these theories just so I can actually sound like I know what I'm talking about. I'll keep you posted.


Post a Comment

<< Home