There is no denying that the ‘Harry Potter’ franchise changed the way we see witchcraft and wizards. While most people probably knew what a ‘Witch’s’ nose looked like before the series, the depiction of Salazar Slytherin in the films helped to introduce a whole new generation to the dark arts. Although not necessarily evil themselves, the villains that the series create are certainly memorable. Even someone as ‘average’ as Vernon Dursley would leave an impression on fans.
One of the most prominent villains from the series is Lord Voldemort. Many people know what Voldemort looks like, but it was the act of Salazar Slytherin that inspired his Muggle counterpart. Without Slytherin, there would be no Voldemort. That is what this famous witch hunter learned in ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ when it was revealed that the man who hunted down Harry Potter was, in fact, a former student of Slytherin. The dark lord’s return in ‘Fantastic Beasts 2′ was a scene that will live on in infamy.
The series has also helped to popularize the concept of ‘leaving work’ as a vacation. We have all seen the stunning Costa Rican beaches and lush rainforest. However, not many people know that Harry Potter and his friends spent a good deal of their vacation in Hogwarts, studying and engaging in the magical creatures and environment that helped to shape their young minds.
Romance And ‘Harry Potter’
While ‘Harry Potter’ made witchcraft and wizards more popular than ever before, the series did not exactly promote healthy relationships. The ‘wizards’ of Hogwarts were not exactly holding hands while dreaming of distant lands. Instead, the series presented a very different vision of romance. One that focused on rivalry and an ‘us-versus-them’ attitude. The fact that many of the series’ central characters die at the end did not exactly encourage fans to rush into relationships either. People may have been inspired by the franchise’s realistic take on witchcraft and wizards, but that does not mean that they had to follow suit.
Since the inception of the ‘Harry Potter’ series, fans have tried to pair the characters with their own ‘partners’ in real life. Some of these match-making attempts have even resulted in celebrity weddings. The most famous example being Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart. The two were first introduced to fans as the devoted pair that would eventually get married in the ‘Twilight’ films. Although not exactly a love story, the films did help to popularize the term ‘Twilight Romance’. Whether or not this was intentional, the pairing of these two incredibly popular superstitions certainly helped to shape the way that people thought about love and relationships. Another example is the much-loved Jemima Kirkee and Sid James. The comedy duo were married in real life, and their celebrity status inspired many children and adults to nickname their new puppy ‘Jemima’.
Change Of Identity
If real-life weddings are great for inspiring fandom, real-life births are even more so. The ‘Harry Potter’ universe did not just introduce the world to wizards and witchcraft, but also to Muggle-borns and half-bloods. While it was initially hard to recognize anyone outside of the realm of fiction, as the series progressed it became easier to identify characters by where they came from. At the end of the day, even someone as average as Vernon Dursley had very distinctive features. While it is always fun to speculate on which character may be the biological father of which child, that is not the point. The fact that these characters were not born to begin with but rather were artificially created through magical potions and spells certainly helped to make them more relatable to fans.
When the final installment of the ‘Harry Potter’ series was released in 2021, it was not just the fans that had to wait till next year to see the characters again. The reunion of the Dursley family was also eagerly anticipated. It had been a long time since we had seen the Dursley’s. Not only did they represent the more despicable elements of Harry’s childhood, but their disdain for him and his friends was also played out in front of the camera. It was clear that the writers of the series needed a break after 17 books and 7 years. The wait for the Dursleys was well worth it. Seeing Harry’s relatives for the first time in many years was both touching and hilarious.
It seems that the writers did not need much time to recover and the next two ‘Fantastic Beasts’ films were even greater successes than the previous two. While the first film was set in New York City, the second installment went back to Hogwarts. Fans would get to see a lot of old friends and make a few new ones too. Many of the main characters, including Newt Scamander, grew up and matured as a result of their experiences in ‘Harry Potter’. It was a nostalgic trip back to a period in the franchise’s history when things were simpler and more innocent. It was great to see all of the old faces again, even if only for a couple of hours. It is also interesting to see how different some of the relationships are now. Harry had changed a lot since the days of the first film, and some of his old friends had changed along with him. Some had even made a life for themselves away from the magical world, while others had used their time to better themselves. It was a joy to see everyone together again and have a little reminisce. One thing is for sure, after a few hours of reminiscing, the stressors of the day melted away.
A Whole New Generation Of Fans
The most recent ‘Harry Potter’ film series was responsible for a whole new generation of fans. While many people were entranced by the realistic portrayal of witchcraft in the films, it was the fact that they were a form of escapism that helped to fuel their popularity. The films provided young people with an alternative to the hectic and stressful adult world. It was no coincidence that many of the films were set in and around London. With the exception of a few rural areas, the city has always been teetotlly and hygienically obsessed. While London in the 21st century is a completely different place from the one seen in the Harry Potter films, there is still a lot of nostalgia to be found. The films helped generate a new audience, particularly among the millennials. Those that grew up during the ‘Harry Potter’ era may have been inspired to become witches and wizards themselves, while others simply wanted to relive those wonderful experiences through a film.
There is no denying that the ‘Harry Potter’ franchise changed the way we see witchcraft and wizards. While most people probably knew what a ‘Witch’s’ nose looked like before the series, it was the act of Salazar Slytherin that inspired his Muggle counterpart. Without Slytherin, there would be no Voldemort. That is what this famous witch hunter learned in ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ when it was revealed that the man who hunted down Harry Potter was, in fact, a former student of Slytherin. The dark lord’s return in ‘Fantastic Beasts 2′ was a scene that will live on in infamy.