HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD
*** SPOILER ALERT
HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD
The Eighth Story. Nineteen Years Later.
Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The play will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30, 2016.
It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.
While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.
FLABBERGASTED. That’s what I felt most of the time. Because of all the things I’ve heard and knowing J.K. Rowling didn’t write this play herself, I tried to detach myself from the actual story while keeping what knowledge I have of Harry Potter. For some people it’s not possible or doesn’t make sense to do so. I tried to keep an open mind.
Every now and again, there is a book that completely engulfs the reader and doesn't let go. Then the book reaches its conclusion and the reader stays bound by its spell. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child did that to and for me. I couldn't put the book down. This was my first time reading a play on my own. It was thrilling! I needed to know what would happen with Albus and Scorpius. It was a must!
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child follows Albus Potter and Scorpius Malfoy on a journey of chaos. Within the play's storyline is Harry's struggle as a father. There’s more evil sorcery. There’s a decent version of Draco Malfoy. Friendships are tested and some have been created. Of course, it won't be a Harry Potter story without hiccups along the way. By hiccups, I mean changing time itself and Harry trying to get parenting right.
To begin, reading Harry Potter as a father was fascinating and infuriating. Harry doesn’t really understand his son and problems stem from that. Sometimes he projects what he needed as a child onto Albus and that causes more problems. I had to push past certain parts because I was so angry with Harry.
“ALBUS: No! I just wish you weren't my dad.
HARRY (seeing red): Well, there are times I wish you weren't my son.
There’s a silence. ALBUS nods. Pause. HARRY realizes what he’s said.
No, I didn’t mean that …”
We all know Harry was neglected as a child by the Dursleys. So, to say something like that is just horrible. Absolutely poor judgement. I wanted to scream at the top of my lungs. Harry knows what it is to be unloved and unwanted. Even though Harry and Albus learn a lot about each other throughout the play, I couldn’t get past it. Despite the seventh scene of act one, the play was entertaining.
Scorbus is one of my new favorite ship. Sorry, Feysand. I’m half kidding. Sort of. Albus Potter is dealing with normal adolescence issues as well as being the son of Harry Potter and carrying the names of two great wizards: Severus Snape and Albus Dumbledore. That’s a lot to deal with. His best friend, Scorpius Malfoy, is the son of Draco Malfoy. Scorpius is a younger male version of Hermione Granger. He’s a know-it-all with some sense and a kind heart. Who would have thought a Malfoy could possess such a thing?
Throughout the play, Albus can be self-centered and selfish when it comes to his friendship with Scorpius. Of course, they make up after Scorpius calls him out. Together Scorpius and Albus go through normal teenage things. The two are quite relatable if magic and fighting through time to save the world is removed.
One of my favorite bits is when Hagrid appears. There's a part in the play where Hagrid is speaking and I teared up.
“Well. Hello. Yeh must be Harry. Hello Potter. I'm Rubeus Hagrid. And I'm gonna be yer friend whether yeh like it or not. 'Cos yeh've had it tough, not that yeh know it yet. An' yer gonna need friends. Now yeh best come with me, don't yeh think?”
Given the circumstances and what happens in the scene prior, I had to control myself while sat in the hair salon. My hairdresser thought I was losing. I had to explain to her what happened. I’ve always loved Hagrid. He’s loyal and a wonderful friend. He’s always been there for Harry, Hermoine, and Ron.
So, why am I rating this a 4 out 5? There are a couple reasons. Harry is in fact the biggest douche to his son. I did well detaching myself from my knowledge of the Harry Potter series. The idea of Harry being the being mean even when he’s trying to do well doesn’t sit right with me. The second is Draco Malfoy being nice. I kept asking myself about Malfoy actually being nice. In the beginning, I thought he wanted something from Harry which turns out he wanted his son. I’d like to reread this again to pick up on the things I missed. I rather enjoyed the play and think it’s a good read for anyone.