Rereading Harry Potter – Week 9
Hello my fellow bookworms! Another week has come and gone and it’s the weekend again, which means that it’s time for another Rereading Harry Potter blog post. Thank you for clicking and reading, it means so much to me that you guys actually read the nonsense that I write!
We finished reading Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets last week, which means that it is now time for Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban! The Prisoner of Azkaban may very well be (one of) my favourite Harry Potter books, though I’m pretty sure that I say that about every single one of them except for the Chamber of Secrets (although that one surprised me as well). The Prisoner of Azkaban has some of my favourite characters in it, such as Remus Lupin, Sirius Black (we’ll have to cherish the time we have with him, since it’s not much) and Buckbeak. The Prisoner of Azkaban is also my favourite PC game, though it has little to do with the book.
“Harry Potter was a highly unusual boy in many ways. For one thing, he hated the summer holidays more than any other time of year. For another, he really wanted to do his homework, but was forced to do it in secret, in the dead of night. And he also happened to be a wizard.”Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
The Prisoner of Azkaban already starts out brilliantly. The quote above is the very first paragraph from the book and it already put a smile on my face. This is going to be great, guys. We’re going to have so much fun the next few weeks. We better cherish every funny thing we can find in this book, because we all know things are going to take a dark turn from the fourth book on.
As always, the story opens at Mr and Mrs Dursley’s house in Little Whinging where Dudley is getting fatter, Mr and Mrs Dursley are getting meaner and Harry is getting lonelier since his friends never seem to write to him during the summer. Ron did make an effort to try and call on the phone this summer, though just like my boyfriend, he doesn’t seem to realise he doesn’t need to shout all the way to Little Whinging for Harry to be able to hear him, that there is actually a phone in between them.
Harry finally receives letters from Ron, Hermione and Hagrid on his birthday, along with his Hogwarts letter. Ron tells him Mr Weasley won 700 galleons, so they’re spending their summer in Egypt. They’re also buying Ron a new wand. That explains why they couldn’t afford the wand last year, when they could buy one this year, I’ve always wondered why that was. Also, since “the wand chooses the wizard” and Ron has been walking around with a second hand wand, I guess he should be becoming a lot more powerful as of this year, right? Since he’s now got a wand that actually chose him. I guess we’ll see.. Ron also tells Harry that Percy was elected Head Boy and he got him a Pocket Sneakoscope for his birthday, a device that lights up when there’s someone untrustworthy around. I suppose that means it should’ve lit up around Scabbers, since (spoiler alert) he is Peter Pettigrew.
“Don’t let the Muggles get you down”Ron Weasley, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Hagrid sends Harry a copy of The Monster Book of Monsters for his birthday, the mandatory literature for the class that Hagrid is going to teach (though Harry doesn’t know that yet). When Harry arrives at Diagon Alley to buy his school supplies further on in the book, we learn that the manager of Flourish and Blotts absolutely hates the books, that are being kept in a cage in the bookshop, since they’re ripping each other apart and attacking his hands. Only Hagrid can think of making a dangerous, biting book mandatory literature for a class. I suppose since the class is called “Care for Magical Creatures“, it kind of fits. I hate that they left all of this out of the movie, though. They changed all this to one scene where Harry opens the book in his room at the Leaky Cauldron and then gets attacked and jumps on it. But I’m getting ahead of myself, we left off at the Dursley’s residence.
The Dursleys announce that Aunt Marge is going to stay with them for about a week. Aunt Marge is Uncle Vernon’s awful sister who lives in the country and breeds bulldogs. She spoils Dudley with expensive presents and has a lot of terrible things to say about Harry. Harry puts up with it for a whole week, because he needs Uncle Vernon to sign his permission slip for Hogsmeade, but loses it when Marge decides to voice her opinions on Harry’s parents on her last night in Little Whinging. Harry blows her up. Not in the BOOM kind of way, but she just slowly inflates until she looks like a giant balloon. She doesn’t fly away through the back door and float through the UK with a bulldog holding on to her leg, though. I guess that was added to the movie for dramatic purposes.
After blowing up Aunt Marge, Harry packs his stuff and flees, figuring that he will be arrested by the Ministry of Magic for underage magic very soon. He decides that he will go to Diagon Alley and collect all of the money from his safe at Gringotts, after which he will travel the world as an outcast. He’s so cute, sometimes I forget he is only 13 years old. Instead, he is picked up by the Knight Bus, the purple triple-decker bus we know and love. I never really understood how the Knight Bus works. Is it some kind of taxi? It helps that I now know Harry had to pay for it, since he doesn’t (visibly) have to in the movie. It is supposed to appear when it’s called, but how do you summon it? What did Harry do to summon it? So many unanswered questions.
Harry is greeted by Stan Shunpike, the conductor of the Knight Bus and Ernie Prang, the driver. When I think of Stan, I think of the creepy, skinny, shabby conductor from the movie, not the eighteen-year-old guy with pimples. I also forgot who Ernie Prang was. I remembered the name, but not who it belonged to. Now I know.
“Take ‘er away, Ern.”Stan Shunpike, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry and Stan chat about Sirius Black. Harry has seen him on the Muggle news (I love that he was on there too, with Uncle Vernon shouting “Wait! You didn’t tell us where he has escaped from!”). I can’t really remember why Sirius escaped and why now? He has been in there for thirteen years, what was the need to escape now? Also, do we ever find out how? It is the big question that is asked a couple of times, but I don’t really remember the answer. Was it because he was an animagus? Plenty of people ar animagi, right? Stan tells Harry that Black killed thirteen people and then just stood there and laughed. We know Peter Pettigrew killed those people and then turned himself into a rat, but why was Sirius laughing? Going to Azkaban is not exactly a laughing matter.
The Knight Bus takes Harry to the Leaky Cauldron, where he is greeted by Cornelius Fudge, the Minister for Magic. Fudge (typing his name makes me hungry) has Innkeeper Tom take them up to a room where they can talk. The way they displayed Innkeeper Tom in the movies always really annoyed me. They used a different actor in the first movie than in the rest of the movies. The first one was perfectly fine, but then from the Prisoner of Azkaban on, they display him as some kind of Hunchback of Notre Dame. He hardly talks, he just wheezes like he has about three braincells and a severe case of Bronchitis. I don’t really understand why they would change Tom so much.
While Harry was afraid that Fudge would expel him and send him to Azkaban for what he did, he lets him off the hook right away and gives him a room at the Leaky Cauldron for the next few weeks. They took those few weeks out of the movie, of course, Harry just walks in and all of the Weasleys and Hermione are already there.
I actually had much more for you today, but since this post is already quite long, I’ll save it for next week. As always, thank you so much for reading. Click the subscribe button down below if you want to be kept up to date! I’ll be back next week with Harry’s stay at the Leaky Cauldron and his first encounter with a dementor. All very exciting stuff. See you next week!