23 October 2007

How Come Dumbledore Has a Boyfriend and I Don't?

I'm a self-avowed fan, a connoseiur of all things Harry Potter...a Pottermaniac if you will. Sure, I'm not quite to the level of going to midnight launch parties at Barnes & Noble dressed as Hermoine, but I did read each of the books in less than two days and was actually depressed when I finished the last installment. I love Oxford (in part) because I think it looks like Hogwarts. I've often wondered what butterbeer would taste like. I waited in line for two and a half hours for the midnight showing of "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" when it came out this summer.

I'm not quite as obsessed as I sound, I promise.

With this kind of Potter-fan street cred (and an obviously Christian world view on life), one would think that my response to the news that Dumbledore, the venerated Hogwarts head master, is gay in the eyes of J.K. Rowling would be somewhat extreme. To be completely honest, when I heard the news yesterday I responded with a resounding and impassioned "okay, and?"
I may have shrugged.
I may have rolled my eyes.
But mostly, it was "okay." C'est la vie, let him be a gay wizard.

I was a little taken aback, yes, but in the same way I would have been had I found out that Dumbledore was a widower or had an illegitimate child. He's the kind of trustworthy, fatherly character that is blissfully conflict-free--isn't the possibility that he could've had anything to do with the Dark Arts what bothered Harry so much in this last book?

Call me what you may, I just don't see what the big deal is either way, and to be completely honest, I think J.K. Rowling's a little bit of a fool for bringing it up now. If it was that important of a plot point she should have put it in the book, and bringing it up now seems a little useless. Romantic relationships have never been a central theme of the book. Love was, but never in a romantic sort of way. Sure, there was that tension between Ron and Hermoine, and Harry and Ginny ended up together in the end, but those were side plots that always took second fiddle to the main story. Dumbledore never had a relationship with anyone in any of the books, so why should it matter now? More so, are we to question the sexuality of every character in the book who doesn't have a relationship? Perhaps Professor Trelawney was in a secret lesbian relationship with Professor McGonagall and that's the real reason she was asked to leave in book 5! Maybe Madam Hooch had another type of profession on the side. We were all a little weirded out by the close relationship that Flich had with his cat, Mrs. Norris...perhaps it was more than owner and pet. Scandal!

Really, people.

I say let the magical world of Harry Potter reside between book covers. Since the last book was released, Rowling has revealed a lot of facts about the characters that weren't in the books. Personally, I'd like to remember Harry, Ron, and Hermoine the way I read them, so I think I'll take Rowling's revelations with a handful of Bernie Bott's Every Flavor Beans...avoiding the earwax flavored ones, of course.


Anonymous said...

Touché! I agree! A little too much, a little too late. Personally, I’d like to remember the characters the way I read them as well. Furthermore, what good does it do now to know that Dumbledore may have been gay, and what does it matter anyway? As far as I am concerned, it’s an issue that doesn’t belong in the book, especially given the young age groups that were, and still are, enamored with the series. I feel that sexuality choices are of a personal nature and don’t bother me unless it happens to invade my “personal space”. I would like to know, however, what the bible says about it. B

LooHoo said...


I'm going to do some research to make sure that I can give you an accurate answer to your question and put it up in a post soon. Thanks for your comment!