Monday, August 8, 2016

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: My Thoughts As I Read It For the First Time

Before beginning: I can't wait!  After nine years, Rowling has given us MORE to the story, a part we never expected to get!
Oh wait. It says she didn't really write it; it's based on a STORY she wrote, so, probably one of those plot summaries she's been putting on pottermore.  Hmmm... That's not so exciting.
Also, is it "Curs├ęd Child" or "Cursed Child"?  No one seems to know.  I like the former better.
Act I:
First few scenes:
This is like a skimpy version of the epilogue of Deathly Hallows, only they're changing details.

Several scenes in:
What is it with Rowling at ages of characters?  Amos Diggory is an old man in a wheelchair?  Why?  Even if we assume he was 35 when Cedric was born, then add 18 years for Cedric's life and the 25 years since Cedric's death, that still only make s him 78.  Why is in he in a care center?  Why is he in a wheelchair?  He's not THAT old!  McGonagall's got to be pushing 90 -- at least!  And she's still teaching at Hogwarts!
This is like the whole "What happened to Harry's grandparents?" bit.  Both James and Lily were born in 1960 and had a child at age 20.  If their parents had them that young, then their parents should only be in their early 40s by the time James and Lily are killed in 1981, yet they are apparently ALL dead.  Even if their sets of parents were older -- let's say the parents were 35 when  they had kids -- that still means that all Harry's grandparents -- muggle and magical -- are only in their late 50s when he becomes an orphan.  Why are ALL of them dead so young?
And now Aunt Petunia has died.  Her age is never specified in the books, but she can't be more than a couple of years older than Lily, based on her naive reactions to Lily's abilities and her own jealousies.  So, if Petunia was born in 1958 and we've now got the Cursed Child script up to 2020 when her death is mentioned, then she's still only 62 at the time of her death.  Why so young?!

Still in Act I:
Wait.  Is Hermione the Minister of Magic?  Cool!  Or wait.  Maybe she isn't.  It's not very clear.

OK.  This is lame.  Some scripts are beautiful to read: Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde.  Some less so but still with great depth of character: Tennessee Williams.  This stuff, however, is like reading really bad fan fiction.  I've seen junior high kids who can write more engaging stuff than this.  It's positively sketchy, and there is ZERO characterization.
It's like a cartoon.  No wait.  I think Scooby Doo had more characterization going on than this script has.

The only reason for its existence is that everyone's desperate enough for more Harry that we're willing to stoop to this.  I certainly hope the actors are talented enough to bring life to this miserable script.

More to come........ (I WILL finish this!  I will!)

UPDATE: 8/14/16
I put off reading this because I was so disappointed, but I have now finished it.
It did get a bit better, but not much. It was like reading fan fiction.  And all the magic was dead.
I'm pretty sure I wish it had never been written.  Bleah.