Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Harry Potter self-control

The f*^#king New York Times has POSTED A REVIEW OF THE HARRY POTTER BOOK. I'm not going to link to it lest I encourage their bastardishness. Apparently they bought it at some soon-to-be-smote-by-lightning bookstore that's ignoring the embargo.

Normally I do not avoid spoilers; I'll read reviews of anything, and will even go to spoiler sites for TV shows and such. I generally feel that if a movie/TV show/book is really good, then knowing how it ends won't ruin it for me. Also, I have an unusual ability to suspend disbelief and to be shocked by an ending even if I had already read about it.

But the end of the Harry Potter series, and all the anxiety about such matters as who dies, who's really a bad guy, and whether good or evil will eventually triumph in the world, is such a huge cultural phenomenon that I feel like knowing what happens ahead of time would totally screw it up. How could I go to Kramerbooks on Friday at midnight, and be near all those nerdy hyperactive children, if I'd read a review that alluded to the ending? What if my non-innocence infected all those little wizard-costumed chimps?

The problem is that I have absolutely no practice in avoiding spoilers. I wasn't tempted to go looking for the supposed photographs of the pages of the book, because it would take a long time to read them--but the NYT! It's right there, staring me in the face! Even the intro sentence, starting with: "J.K. Rowling's spell-binding epic ends . . ." BASTARDS!

1 comment:

Andrea said...

Since I need to get back up to speed on HP before I can read this final volume (I think I can hold out, but we're going on vacation so possibly I can't), I went ahead and read the review for you, and want you to know that there are no spoilers in it. It's all vague and just congratulatory about the literary themes, etc etc. Anyway, you probably know Good vs. Evil is a theme. Possibly you didn't expect deus ex machina, but who ever does, really?

I made that part up, by the way, they don't mention deus ex machina.

I can read reviews without fearing spoilers because I never remember anything about them, other than general impressions, and am almost always actually surprised when I see or read something, even if I probably knew once that it would happen. Of course, I have now watched season 1 of The Wire four or five times, and I am still surprised, sad, happy etc each time I watch. I am emotionally easy like that.