Hello and welcome to my blog, if you read my last blog then good news the National Autistic Society hasn’t murdered me with their secret hit man. Bad news I had one of their content creators decide to post about how great relaxed performances are the day after I did a blog about how they can be improved. Coincidence I think not!
I have seen this concept on Tiktok of people rereading the books as adults and picking it apart everything has some hidden meaning due to its plot holes and the controversy with JK Rowling. I don’t stand with her views and trans women are women, just to put that out there. However the Harry Potter books have always had a place in my heart, I grew up listening to them on audio book because I struggled to read when I was younger. I used to spend a lot of time in my room and I would listen to it constantly.
Then when I would sleep I would fall asleep listening to it. The only one I couldn’t fall asleep to was Prisoner of Azkaban and that’s because I would get too into it. I think sometimes you can split the art from the artist. With some of the points I have been seeing on TikTok videos I was surprised like I don’t remember that being so obvious. So the point of this reread is to see is there hidden meaning to the book or is it people just reaching. I am going to do this as a series throughout the series.
I am going to go through the chapters one by one talking about the good, the bad, the plot holes and potential offensiveness if I see it. This blog will be from The boy who lived to the keeper of the keys to avoid it being a 1000000 word blog. I plan to do four chapters per blog. Also to make you aware I am rereading them as someone who has read and listened to them a lot. Reference to future books will be mentioned. Spoiler alert for the rest of the books and movies. So let’s begin.
The boy who lived
This chapter sets up the rest of the series, its the beginning of everything. The books starts in the third person but we as the reader are in the head of Vernon Dursley then once the Dursleys go to bed its third person with no point of view, its supposed to be a normal day. It sets up the Dursleys well as who they are as people. The magic community being reckless is amusing they are all like Voldemort’s gone lets send thousands of letters and send out shooting stars. Vernon Dursley goes to work and notices that there are people wearing cloaks and he is so angry about it which is lightly amusing. Just let people live their lives. Also it negates the head canon that the Dursley were dicks because they were around the Horcrux.
The timeline is a bit messed up so the Potters died on Halloween night which is the 31st of October, Hagrid picks Harry up that night and Sirius was there. He gives him the motorbike and Hagrid goes off. Then Sirius goes off to find Peter Pettigrew. Then the 1st of November is when the parties and stuff are happening and that night or the early hours of the 2nd of November Harry is dropped of at the Dursley’s, so where were Hagrid and Harry for the missing 24 hours. Was Harry taken to a doctor or was he flying around for 24 hours. He mentions that he fell asleep going over Bristol but how long were they flying over Bristol. It makes no sense. Also we know its Hagrid who told McGonigal where to go. When did he have time? Also we know Sirius goes after Peter on 1st of November so news of his arrest would be going around as well.
McGonigal is the only person in this whole book series that has sense, to be begin with she is worried about Hagrid being the right person to bring Harry there. As soon as she found out Dumbledore’s plan to leave Harry with the Dursley’s she knew that they’d end up abusing him. Dumbledore also knew but didn’t care because blood protection. Also Dumbledore asks her why she isn’t out enjoying the parties like three of the students that she liked hadn’t just been
So in the earlier version off the book Hagrid says that Sirius lent him the motorbike, so we know he was expecting the bike back and then later on he say he is going to give the bike back. In the later versions of this book it says that Sirius gave him the bike and that he was going to put the bike away. So she fixes her timeline for Sirius but doesn’t explain the day that Hagrid and Harry are flying over Bristol. Also probably a bit nit-picky but it came into my head when I was reading the books but why does Sirius have a giant sized bike. Sirius wasn’t a giant.
They left a one year old on a doorstep. What if he had been kidnapped by a death eater, stepped on in the morning or just died of Hypothermia it was November in England. What if Petunia randomly decided she wasn’t putting the milk bottles out. Also its harsh that she finds out her sister died through a letter.
The vanishing glass
10 years later and Harry is being neglected and abused. From this moment on it’s mainly in Harry’s point of view but in the third person. The movie does miss out a lot of Harry’s sass in his inner monologue. If they do the HBO series they need to have Harry’s voice over. Harry is locked in the cupboard for days on end, he’s in clothes once worn by Dudley a child twice his size, he doesn’t get any affection and in this very chapter he gets shouted at constantly. Screw Dumbledore for leaving him with the Dursley’s. So James equally died saving Harry and James was apart of the whole pure blood stuff. He could have been given to anyone the name that come to mind Andromeda Tonks she would have enough blood connection to protect Harry.
Harry has a dream about a flying motorbike but if he wasn’t aware enough to notice his own mother dying in the same room enough to see thestrals would he remember the motor bike even in his subconscious. Probably he was on the motorbike for 24 hours. The way they use Harry as a servant is so crap, he cooking for them at age 10.
So, lets address the elephant in the room. Recently there has been debate that the description of the Dursley’s is fat phobic because Vernon and Dudley are overweight. Rereading it though I don’t think that’s the case because there are over weight people in the franchise for example Molly Weasley is described as plump but she is a good person. Also the books are mainly in Harry’s head/point of view so he’ll describe them negatively not because of their weight but because they are mean to him. Nobody hates the Dursley because they are overweight its because they are dicks to Harry. Also Petunia the one that is blood related to Harry that is a dick to Harry and she’s not fat. I think it’s a way to show the audience that you can any size and still be a dick. I can understand though why it is construed as fatphobic but in my opinion I don’t see it.
The way they treat Harry is horrible, with the inner monologue you can see how young he is. Sometimes to easy to forget with all the adventures he goes on. He is so young. He always hears them talking bad about him which wouldn’t help his self esteem and he’s not even upset he’s got to the point now where he’s just accepting of his fate. It’s really cute that he wants to be left at home to watch tv and eat food. They are like and come back and find the house destroyed. He ends up going to the Zoo with them. At the zoo the Dursley’s get him an ice lolly and food at the food place at the Zoo so they know how to act around him outside such an abuse thing acting normal outside but being a dick inside. Anyway away from the Dursley’s I don’t know why but this reread I am more screw you Dursley.
When Harry is speaking to the snake is he hissing or is he speaking English. I forget sometimes that they don’t get stuck in the tank in the book. His early magic was amusing, he’s so sassy in his thoughts.
The letters from no one
So, Harry has been in the cupboard for a month and school is finished, did he go to school. Or was he in a cupboard for all that time. He’s looking forward to going to a different secondary school because he’ll be away from Dudley so he might make some friends. If only he knew.
Harry sass is amazing, Dudley tells Harry that they put peoples head in the toilet at Harry’s new secondary school and Harry says this “The poor toilet never had anything as horrible as your head down it might be sick”. Such sass and in the next page he’s see’s his school uniform in a pot of water and he says “I didn’t realise it had to be so wet”. So much sass.
Harry should have chucked his letter in the cupboard, silly Harry. They think that they are being spied on but then move Harry to another bedroom so that he doesn’t get another letter. Or are they doing it so they can be like look we treat him so good. Isn’t it bad though that Dudley pretended to cry, was sick on purpose and hit his mum because this has probably worked in the past which is just crazy. This reread I am struggling to be annoyed at Dudley as much as I normally would do because he’s a child. I think that my psychology degree is coming to play here so rather than seeing Dudley as this super villain I am seeing him as a product of his nasty parents.
Harry stepped on Vernon’s face to get a letter, his face should be broken. I love how Hagrid is just like not giving up getting these letters to Harry. They are in eggs, they are milk bottles and he even sends some down the chimney. Vernon packing the family up and leaving is so weird. Surely they want Harry to go away they didn’t want him. So they go to a hotel and Hagrid sends a lot of letters to the hotel. Which adds the question is Hagrid following them subtly and if so he could have been a guest at the hotel. But you know plot.
Harry nearly forgets it’s his birthday and that’s sad. He’s counting down from 10 to when it’s going to be his birthday, in the audio books if you’ve stopped paying attention trust me you start paying attention after the first boom. Especially in the Stephen Fry version of the audio books. So many times I would jump.
The Keeper of the keys
First thing first I love Hagrid and no amount of rereads will change my mind. The movies did him dirty because in the book he recognises Harry straight away, there’s no mistaking him for Dudley. He also spells Harry’s name right in the movies because again Hagrid isn’t an idiot. The fact they try to make him more like an idiot in the movies is ableist, the fact he spells Harry’s name wrong is meant to be for laughs, hahahaha a person can’t spell. You know who always can’t spell people with learning difficulties. JKR could have taken that out if she wanted to she had the choices of the movies. So I may not completely see the fatphobia but the ableism is loud.
See how pure Hagrid is, the Dursley’s point a gun at him and he’s straight away making fires for them so they are warm. He also makes enough sausages for everyone to have some. He is such a good person. He gets angry when Harry doesn’t know about Hogwarts. He gets angrier when Harry apologises. It’s amusing that the Dursley’s are trying intimidate a half giant is amusing. Now isn’t the time Vernon!
Harry finding out he is a wizard is so so iconic and the fact he questions it is so interesting. It takes a bit longer in the book to come to the realisation. Him connecting the dots is adorable and we can see him become more relaxed in himself now that he knows he isn’t just a freak.
So, a criticism I see a lot about the books is it’s not planned out and JKR forgets stuff. People say that she didn’t plan a lot of it. I think though Petunia’s rant about magic is dripping in jealousy and years of pent up annoyance. Which will come into play in the Deathly Hallows when we see her write to Dumbledore asking her to go but when she is rejected she gets angry over jealousy and the anger over the years. Could be she sees Harry the child that is her sister’s showing signs off magic and she wants that for herself. Also with petunia the anger could grieve, obviously she wasn’t close with her sister but in the same morning she got a baby and the news her sister died in a letter. She wouldn’t have time to process it because she would have jumped straight into parenting. So that could add to the resentment and her treatment of Harry.
Harry finding out about his parents deaths and how he is famous is interesting. For the first time Harry is being told what is going on by an adult without the adult getting annoyed about asking questions. The Dursley’s interjecting every so often just to remind us they are there is annoying, yes JKR we know they are there they brought the kids to the hut on the rock. The pig tail is so extra. I love Hagrid.
So what have we learnt from the first few chapters, Harry is a sassy kid who is ready to escape his life with the Dursley’s. The Dursley’s are awful people however Petunia and Dudley have reasons behind it. Yet to find a reason why Vernon is a dick other than he hates different people. Though I didn’t see fatphobia in the books there is some ableism in the movie. Hagrid is an amazing person that can do no wrong and deserves better.
If you like this blog give it a like, if you have something to say about the blog comment below nicely if you struggle to comment on here go to my socials. Next blog is going to released next week where we will do the next four chapters so follow so you can keep reading.