17 April 2007

HP7 Predictions: Who Will Live? Who Will Die?

So back when the title of the seventh Harry Potter book was released, I said I'd like to start some sort of coordinated Harry Potter predictions blogging challenge. But it looks like Scholastic is saving me the trouble--they're releasing seven key questions in the days leading up to the book release and encouraging people to vote on what they think.

Well, we can do better than that. We can blog about it.

So, if you're at all interested in Harry Potter, I encourage you to blog along with me. Answer the seven questions and cast your final predictions for the end of an epic which Orson Scott Card called "the most significant event in English language literature in decades."

So without further ado--

Question #1: Who will live? Who will die?

The deaths in book seven worry a lot of fans, especially since JK Rowling's comment that "one character got a reprieve, but I have to say two die that I didn't intend to die . . . ." A lot of my predictions are based on my perspective as a student of literature and as a writer. Here's the rundown:

  • Harry Potter--Live. First, the series contains so many elements of the typical hero cycle--the reluctant hero, thresholds, tests and trials, mentor figures, a final battle in which the hero stands alone. Each book is a mini-cycle, but the whole series is one as well. And the only way to properly end a hero cycle (as JKR would know) is with the hero returning triumphant from the "underworld." Second, the whole focus on Ginny/Harry would be a total waste if he died. Third, JKR likes him too much. No way she's gonna kill him, despite threats to the contrary (to avoid "non-author written sequels"). And even if Harry's a horcrux, Orson Scott Card has a theory to take care of that problem.
  • Voldemort--Die. See hero cycle argument above. The Dark Lord will die, though several of his minions will likely escape to avoid a Disney-esque ending wouldn't be fitting for any HP book after book 2.
  • Snape--Die. Snape, after all, turns out to be good, but in order to completely rid himself of any doubt, he must be killed fighting for the good guys. Unless he turns out to be evil--then he lives. But I doubt it. (As I'm guessing "Is Snape evil?" will be one of the later questions, I'm going to withhold my argumentation on this topic until later.)
  • Ginny--Live. Ever since going deep into the Harry Potter fandom, I've been a major proponent of the One-Big-Happy-Weasley-Family (OBHWF) theory. Plus all the great build up of Ginny's character as a suitably strong woman for Harry would be completely wasted if she ended up just being the weeping girlfriend of the dead hero. (I love the contrast between Ginny and Cho Chang, which I explored in my IB thesis entitled "Gender Roles in Harry Potter.")
  • Ron--Live/Die. I'm still torn over Ron. On the one hand, the OBHWF theory says that he should live. On the other hand, he gets his middle name with his uncle Bilius, who died after seeing the Grim.
  • Hermione--Live. No good reason for book-smart Hermione to die. She'll be orchestrating behind the scenes. Plus OBHWF.
  • Neville--Die. The parallels to Harry practically beg JKR to kill him off. It's got way too much tragic potential to waste. (Sorry, Mom. I really love Neville, I do, but he has to die.)
  • Hagrid--Live. Um, no one cares. He's cute for about the first two books, but I think people have gotten sick of him. Also, he didn't really have that big of a roll in book 6--why should he matter in 7?
  • Draco Malfoy--Die. Another tough one. If Draco really decides to renounce his father's ways, he will die like Snape in order to prove his loyalty. On the other hand, if he remains evil, he could escape. But maybe the scales are a little more in favor of death.
  • Others:
    • The Weasleys--Die. Unfortunately, there are far too many of them for them all to make it through the novel. Assuming Ron and Ginny live, my bet is that one of the twins or Percy will die. Arthur injured, but he pulls through.
    • Lupin and Tonks--Live. For obvious reasons.
    • Dumbledore--Still Dead. Just checking.
    • Luna Lovegood--Live. Goes on to commentate on many quidditch matches. In case you were wondering.


Ian said...

I'm torn about Draco and Snape. Up until the 6th book, I was a big Snape fan. I thought for sure that he was going to end up triumphant at the end. But knowing "She who must not be named" and her love of crazy twists, I have no idea where he will stand at the end. Was the end of book 6 the big twist for him, or will there be yet a final twist for our black clad friend? Really, wether he goes one way or the other, I think it's likely he will die. (as a tear slowly emerges...)

Draco is another tough one for me. He is the opposite of Snape. What he did at the end made me change my mind about him. I could actually see him helping Harry out. Going with him on the quest, taking out Snape at the end... The possiblities are endless.

I don't want to see any of the Weaslies bite it. Maybe Percy. If Ron dies I will be PISSED (notice the all caps...) One thing I worry about though. Ginny, whose real name is Ginevera (a form of Guinevere) may end up a traitor to Harry. She who must not be named often names her charicters after historical figures because they have their traits. Guinevere was a TRAITOR (all caps again) to the king. If Harry is the King, then she may betray him. If Harry is not the king, and is Lancelot, who is the king? See where I'm going? (another tear).

What's worse is that i'm a 31 year old married guy with three kids that are too young to read this stuff. Sad indeed.

Courtney said...

I am officially mad at you Liz. I have WAY too much to do, and now you are forcing me to blog about Harry Potter. Rude, I tell you. Rude. I would like to discuss Dumbledore with you. I am torn about that-- what about the important aspect of the Gandalf-like qualities? The "resurrection" of sorts from the mentor-thought-dead? There needs to be some sort of re-birth to fulfill the requirements of full hero-dom. No? If not Dumbledore, than who? Harry could, but how?

Aaron said...

Always happy to give my take on HP. Who's gonna die? Here's my best shot:
Harry - Live.
Voldemort - Die. Harry will not kill him, though. He will either die from his minions, or from Snape or Draco. I think it would be cool if he didn't die. I like him to be reduced to a near-nothing shadow of existence (this would leave a window for a return).
Snape - Die. But I don't want him to.
Ron - Die. I don't want him to. And as I began this post, I thought I would have him live. I figured that he is Sam (Harry being Frodo) and Sam didn't die. . .but I also think him dying would create such an incredible emotional response from readers. It could go that way.
Hermione - Live.
Percy - Die. I think Percy has to die in some sacrificial way (metaphorically speaking) to make up for his bad ways. Then again, he could just stay bad. . .
Neville - Live. He better not die. The most touching part of the entire series thus far is when the gang stumbles upon him visiting his mom in the hospital--and he saved the candy wrapper(?) in his pocket. . . I want him to get revenge. I'd even be okay if he killed Voldemort (though I don't think he will).
Other Weasleys - Both parents better live. I hope that Dad has a showdown with Lucius. The twins? Actually, I could see them dying in a dramatic fashion. They would like to go out that way. . .
Hagrid - I could see him dying.
Other professors, adults. -I could see McGonnagel dying, and Lupin, too.
Draco - Live. Why would he turn good, then die. He has to turn good, then live.

If I had to pin myself down on a guess of which two die (there could be more, of course). . .I would have to go with Ron and Percy. I think Snape got the "repreive" that JK mentioned.

JK is a great storyteller. I'd be suprised if any of her billions of fans could guess what she has in store for us. Can't wait.

Hop on youtube for a sneak peak at HP 5 movie if you haven't done so yet. . .