Fun with Franchises: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (2011), Part III — “Well That Boat’s No Good”

Today we continue with another entry in our Fun with Franchises series — Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. Part III.

In case you don’t know how this works — a while back, I decided to rank my favorite Disney movies and rank my favorite James Bond movies. And the Disney ones were mostly straight synopses and not too much fun, but when I got to Bond, I enlisted the help of my friend Colin (whose blog is TokyoRemix.com. Fuck yeah, promotion!), who knows everything about the Bond franchise that I do not, for those articles, and along the way, learned how to have fun with it. And, by the end of the Bond articles, we were having so much fun that I said, “Man, we have to do this again with other stuff.” Because I spent about a straight month and a half putting together those articles. That’s how much time and effort actually goes into something like that. And not once did it feel like work. It was so much fun that I knew, as long as we were doing it for comedy purposes and able to riff off of each other — we could do pretty much any film and it would work.

And very quickly, the first ones you come up with are the major franchises, because those are not only the most fun, but also the most universally known. Everyone’s gonna understand all the jokes we make (well… most of them. Some of them might be limited to three people) about them. So that’s what we’re doing. And if you’re gonna have fun with franchises, it wouldn’t be right if you didn’t franchise it. Also, just so we’re clear, this is all for parody. We’re just messing with them because we love them.

And that’s Fun with Franchises. Right now, we’re doing the Harry Potter franchise, and today is Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, Part III.

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We begin Part III in the boathouse.

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Which is now base of operations instead of the Shrieking Shack.

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Oh, Malfoy. Bad time to be saying anything to him. And not only that, he says to call off the attack.

Colin:

For anyone who played Warcraft III, how much is Lucius reminding you of Undead Arthas right now?

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This is a weird shot. Like, “My skin is peeling, I’m becoming human” or something. I guess it does set up the eventual end, but still — it brings about a lot of questions and has little to do with Rowling. I mean,  I sort of get it, but it also brings too many more questions than it should.

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Voldfinger’s like, “I don’t have to do shit before morning. This motherfucker is coming to ME!”

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“What did the five fingers say to the face?”

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Colin:

YOU’RE AN INANIMATE FUCKING OBJECT!

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“How can you live with yourself, Lucius?”

This is AWESOME.

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“I don’t know.”

Wow. That was a rare moment of empathy.

Colin:

What else do you say to that? Nobody’s ever asked me how I live with myself, but I think “I don’t know” is the only thing I’d be able to come up with on the spot. That or “booze.”

My go-to answer is always, “Like this.” Or, if I’m feeling cheeky, “Fucking spectacularly.”

Colin:

It’s marvelous that you have a go-to answer to that question.

You have to, when you’re me.

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He tells him to go get Severus.

(It’s almost like. “Call Bonasera. We need him now.” Or, I guess, in this franchise… “I want to talk to the goblin.”)

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“I know where he is.”

(Buddy, the grounds aren’t that big. You can probably just go looking for him and find him sooner or later.)

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Colin: 

Wait, so who are these guys on the brooms and what are they doing flying through all these Death Eaters? I wanted this to be like in The Longest Day when the Luftwaffe pilot gets orders to stop the Allied invasion at all costs, even though it’s just him and his wingman. And he’s jaded and doesn’t follow rules, but he’s a soldier, so he goes even though he knows it’s hopeless. That stuck with me. This is like four guys on broomsticks doing whatever. Strafing the Death Star. I don’t know.

“If I say it’s safe to surf this school, captain, then it’s safe to surf this school!”

“…Harry don’t surf!”

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This is actually kinda fucked up that they’re fighting in such an enclosed space. This is a worse situation than most Revolutionary War battles.

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I do like how they can just show up and duel, though. That’s great.

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Break yo self indeed.

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That was great. Stop Hermione, then cap that fuck.

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Spiders? The spiders have joined Voldemort?

Colin:

So let me get this straight. The giants are on the Death Eaters’ side. Way to go, Hagrid, aren’t they like your cousins, or something? And now all of Aragog’s kids are bad too? Couldn’t Hagrid get them in line, at least? Shit, man, you really dropped the ball here.

It’s really funny how much Hagrid is actually responsible for.

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I wonder how long it took to choreograph something like this.

Colin:

I wanna feel like I’d be a boss in this fight, but it really would come down to sniping. I don’t need to be running around getting messed up by everyone. I don’t even do that in video games. Mike suggested this before, and I’d be the guy. Snipe from up in the tower.

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Aww… Lavendead.

Colin:

Lavender Brown (hah, her names are both colors) is now dead. That’s what happens when you write mushy shit on fogged up train car windows.

I was gonna say it’s funny that Hermione was the one to do this, but honestly, I’m not really sure what she did. She’s already dead. She can’t become a werewolf, so what exactly did Hermione do? Keep her corpse from being fucked?

Colin:

At least she put Greyback out of commission, if only temporarily.

I’d have felt like that was more of an accomplishment if it was the Greyback from the books. Once Bellatrix fucked him up in that last movie… I don’t know. I kinda lost respect for him as a scary motherfucker. True evil respects one another. He should never be able to be taken out by a snake around his neck. He shouldn’t be treated like another thug. So, because of that, I treat him like just another thug. Hermione could have been taking out McNair and it would be the same thing.

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Ah, dementors.

Wait… so who’s controlling them? The Minister of Magic got killed like, twenty minutes ago. Were they already dispatched and are following orders, or does Voldemort just become de facto Minister now that he killed the previous one? Does dementor control factor into coups? I’m not really getting how they can just be ordered to kill students like this like they’re at Kent State.

Colin:

Yay, massacres.

And super massacres, like the one at Clark Kent State.

If it wasn’t for my horse…

Though apparently dementors are more like mercenaries who took the Azkaban gig because they could feed off all the convicts’ happiness and take glee in it. So they’re actually on Voldemort’s side now, since they figure the body count for them will be higher this way.

It’s pretty interesting how dementors operate. Since theoretically they could just be attacking anyone and everyone. But on the other hand… everyone can just repel them really easily. It really starts to not make a whole lot of sense the more you think about it.

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THAT’s how you fight off a hundred dementors at once!

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Ah, Aberforth.

The Little Brother Wand.

Or maybe the Middle Child Wand.

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What’s funny is that Hagrid isn’t here for any of this. (Still not really allowed to do magic, right?)

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YES! Finally! Took them eight movies but they finally got around to using those stairs.

(The ironic thing being that they wouldn’t have, if they stuck to the book.)

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Voldeneye wants to know why the wand isn’t giving him all its power.

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There’s a great moment where Snape is like, “You used some exceptional magic with it already.” And Voldemort is like, “No, I’M extraordinary. Not the wand.”

Colin:

Great line. It’s so true, too. 

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“The wand answers to you. And you only.”

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“Does it?”

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“Does it truly answer to me?”

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This is nice and subtle. Harry’s like, “Oh fuck.” I like when characters can see ahead to what’s going to happen.

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Snape says the wand’s true loyalty lies with him.

(I love that Snape is the presumed expert here. It’s pretty funny the amount of stuff Voldemort doesn’t know for someone in it as deep as he is.)

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“The Elder Wand cannot serve me properly because I am not its true master.”

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“The Elder Wand belongs to the wizard who killed its last owner.”

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“You killed Dumbledore, Severus.”

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“While you live, the Elder Wand cannot truly be mine.”

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“Go ahead. I’ve seen everything but Jesus no way.”

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“You’ve been a good and faithful servant, Severus. But only I can live forever.”

Colin:

This is the part where you’re going buck wild inside your head, like, “BREAK THE FUCK OUT RIGHT NOW! MOVE! MOVE! HOW DO I SURVIVE THIS SHIT?! MOTHERFUCKER! AHHHH!”

Shit, I do that every morning when my alarm goes off.

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Throat cut! YES!

Colin:

He got Salieri’ed. Voldielocks just F[Murray Abraham]’ed his day up.

That man is a national treasure.

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“Nagini – kill.”

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Colin:

Interesting that we’ve seen Voldemort kill dozens of people using Avada Kedavra, but this time he uses a different spell that doesn’t quite kill him, and then lets the snake finish the job, and it doesn’t even completely kill him.

That is kind of strange. It’s clearly a Rowling Special, but one I kind of understand, because you need this moment to happen. Maybe it’s a weird honorific thing. He wants Snape to go out with dignity and not like all the assholes he’s killed. So he slashes him, katana-style and has the second finish the job.

(It’s complete horse shit, I know. This is Rowling all the way. But tell me that wasn’t hands down better than most other explanations you’d hear for this. I made that shit sound halfway plausible.)

Colin:

This is one of those deals where I wish you could enchant yourself in some way so that if it kills you, they die too, or whatever. Shiho will know what I mean when I say, “Pull a Mayuri.” They’ve got spells for just about anything – we’ve even seen a spell that will kill you under certain conditions. This makes me think that anyone entering the wizard mob should get to make their employer take the Unbreakable Vow – you will never kill me, or have me killed. Then at least you know that they can’t backstab you without going down themselves.

Wouldn’t it be fucked up if the wand only answered to Nagini?

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Such a powerful moment.

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“Take them. Please.”

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“Take them to the Pensieve.”

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Colin:

Good thing that Hermione – like Slughorn – keeps phials (auld spellinge) on hand at all times in case we need to collect a bodily fluid at a moment’s notice.

I can’t tell you how many times I’d have to collect a bodily fluid at a moment’s notice.

I can’t tell you which, though, cause it’s a secretion.

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“Look at me.”

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“You have your mother’s eyes.”

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Colin:

“I KNOW! ABOUT THE EYES! ENOUGH!”

Really though, after watching these all in a row…how many times does someone tell him he has his mother’s eyes? Who has that much time to just stare into someone’s eyes so long that you’d recognize them elsewhere like 20 or more years later? If you needed any indication that JK Rowling was not, in fact, a man…here you go.

But you know what… the amount of times they’ve done it… it makes this one work all the more. Because what if you didn’t have all those other ones? The emotion in this one wouldn’t come through.

That said — seriously, with the fucking eyes…

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(They can all see thestrals now!)

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Colin:

Well that boat’s no good.

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Voldemort tells his forces to retreat. He tells them to dispose of their dead with dignity.

Colin:

I’d like to take this whole scene seriously, but mostly I’m just imagining all the applications this sort of magic could have. iPods without earbuds and radio pumped directly into your brain.

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Oh, also, in the middle of this, we get a shot of what is probably a shot of Fred dying.

Colin:

That’s what I thought too. But then after the light fades away, he’s still moving. So maybe he bites it in a second? I never got how a ceasefire like this works when everyone’s in such tight quarters, fighting like crazy. Wouldn’t you let off a shot just after Voldafone finished his speech?

I thought it probably was more like Voldman Sachs told everyone to stop fighting, and then this fuck went and was like, “RAHH!” and killed him afterward.

Then again, that could be George, and we could supposed to be thinking, “Where’s Fred?” Which is dumb, since it’s a completely random cut. I don’t know what to make of it.

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I’d also like to take a second to point out how badly I lost it when I first saw Colin’s notes and, “Well that boat’s no good.” I didn’t want to ruin the comment by writing underneath it, so I’m putting it down here.

Because I took an image of that shot on my own, because it’s just so random and sticks out so much. And then, when I saw his notes, they were just notes, and yet I knew exactly what shot it was supposed to be for, which made it all the more hilarious. This is why I make sure we don’t compare notes beforehand. Comments like that. And the best part is, I know it wasn’t even meant to be anything more than an observation. Most of Colin’s comments that end up being subtitles (which is at least 2/3 of them) are ones where he’s not even necessarily trying to make a joke. And that’s why they end up being so funny to me. It’s just a shot of a boat, and then, “Well that boat’s no good.” I can’t even explain why that’s so funny, and yet I hope everyone just innately understands. Just, the situation, and the comment…

I hope you all understand how hilarious that was. In case you didn’t.

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“Harry Potter – I now speak directly to you. On this night, you have allowed your friends to die for you rather than face me yourself. There is no greater dishonor.”

(That’s not true.)

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“Join me in the Forbidden Forest, and confront your fate. If you do not do this, I shall kill every last man, woman and child who tries to conceal you from me.”

Colin:

He says he’ll kill every last man, woman, and child that tries to conceal Harry, but he doesn’t mention transgender or intersex. So there’s a good three or four Hufflepuffs that can rest easy.

That also doesn’t mention what happens to the people who don’t try to conceal him. What if they’re like, “I don’t know where the fuck he is, go get him. I don’t give a fuck”?

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Well that’s quite the ultimatum.

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Always a big fan of the trail of blood.

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Ha ha. Filch fought too.

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Filius Flitwick (baddest motherfucker at Hogwarts) is upset the fighting stopped.

He was putting up Legolas numbers.

Colin:

Flitwick with the thousand yard stare. What you don’t know is that he does this every day at exactly this time while remembering the time he accidentally charmed a girl to death.

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How many divination professors does it take to identify a dead body?

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Fred’s dead, baby. Fred’s dead.

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Thank you for giving Ron a serious moment.

Colin:

This is the moment where I genuinely felt bad. We love the twins. And he’s really shook up about it. It’s not even like they got that much screen time, but they were never not awesome.

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This is sad. She was pregnant, too.

(Mike Note: Though I found out later on, as you’ll see in my synopsis in the next part, that apparently she had the kid already. Not mentioned once in the movie.)

But what’s really sad is that they CUT IT OUT OF THE BOOK AND THE MOVIE!

Colin:

Sounds like a C-section to me.

Nice.

But I’ve gone off about that a bunch before these articles, so I won’t now.

But seriously – why would you deprive two of the best characters of a chance to die ON SCREEN?

Colin:

Lupin and Tonks…couldn’t give a shit. They were all but written out of the franchise and were never that badass to begin with. It’s sorta sad, I guess, but I’m kinda out of fucks to give.

I’m All Out of Fucks to Give.

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Does the Pensieve know he’s coming?

Colin:

Is that thing on a motion sensor, or…?

It’s like the automatic flushing toilets.

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Really? You can order a memory to go?

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Is he gonna project it or something?

Colin:

And he tosses it over to the desk in a weird, floaty sort of way that makes me think you probably buy Pensieves at Wizard Sharper Image.

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And thus begins one of the best sequences in the franchise, books or movies.

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It’s Lily.

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And Petunia.

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Petunia thinks Lily is a freak.

Colin:

“I’m going to tell Mummy!” Yeah. That’s right. Briony that bitch.

“Yeah. That’s Right. Briony That Bitch.” Subtitle.

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I come out of trees, motherfucker.

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“Fifteen bucks, little man, put that shit, in my hand.”

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Isn’t it weird how these memories know exactly what to show us?

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Whomping Willow? Or just a regular ass tree?

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Oh, man, this is so tragic already.

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This is the kind of sequence you write seven books for. You get an idea, and you go to write it, and there’s always one part you really want to do, to the point where getting to that moment is what allows you to get through the rest of it. And this, to me, seems like that sequence. This seems like what J.K. Rowling was building toward with all of her other books. She knew this was coming, and this was that ace up her sleeve.

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Lily be a Gryff.

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Asian kid!

Colin:

Whoa! It’s 1971, but look at the little Asian kid in the front, there! No black kids, though.

We would both notice that.

The school only was desegregated in 1965.

Brown vs. Ministry of Magic.

I heard it only happened because Plessy was muggle-born.

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Aww… James meets Lily.

Colin:

Considering they’ve just been sorted like seconds before, how come their ties are all house-appropriate? Are these ties programmed to change the second you get sorted? Cause there’s first-year James Potter with his red and gold.

I don’t see the ties colored in the previous shot, so I think they might be.

Sirius also looks like the disgusting kid who would eat his own scabs and do all sorts of crazy shit like run head first into a brick wall.

…which also makes him the first kid who totally ended up eating a girl out in eighth grade under the bleachers. Because women go for that sort of thing at that age.

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What’s even better is that over this, we hear Snape’s lines from earlier, about how Harry is “just like his father” – which only now he’s realizing is totally true.

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“The prophecy did not refer to a woman. It spoke of a boy, born at the end of July.”

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“Yes, but he thinks it’s HER son!”

Colin:

Hear the desperation in his voice and recognize that he’s talking about Lily here. This will all make my line of questions more logical in a second.

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“He intends to hunt them down now, to kill them. Hide them. Hide them all. I beg you.”

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“What will you give me in exchange, Severus?”

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“Anything.”

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Colin:

I was also of the impression that Voldemort would look more normal in the flashbacks. I thought that his new, creepy body was just a byproduct of the spell that brought him back from being a Rod Stewart baby. Or that being the Rod Stewart baby set him up to look like that. But either way, he had a nose at SOME point. Was it making all the horcruxes that made him end up looking like this, even before he got killed? Was he cool with this, or was there a moment where his nose fell off and he got freaked out?

That’s a good point. We don’t actually ever find out how he ended up looking this way. He just sort of goes from diary Tom Riddle to Voldemort and it’s never explained.

Colin:

Like Jesus. What’s he doing for those middle years between his birth and all the miracles? Probably spending gold and smoking myrrh, which I choose to believe is something one could smoke. And is frankincense one of those hybrid breeds of pot? 

I really hope frankincense was the common sense of those days.

You know one of the wise men was extra Jewy and was all like, “Oy, I hope he gets the gift of some frankincense.” “Thanks, Schlomo. We could really use that here in this fucking barn right now.”

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Oh shit, they actually did go back to the first movie! Wow, they really found a way to make it seem less shitty here. Good for them.

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“You said you would keep them safe!”

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“Lily and James put their faith in the wrong person, Severus. Rather like you.”

Damn. He just admitted he’s not particularly trustworthy.

Colin:

Nice telescope. Oh, I’m sorry, was something happening?

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“The boy lives.”

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“So what? The Dark Lord is gone.”

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“The Dark Lord will return! And then the boy will be in danger.”

(So he’s aware of the horcruxes back then? It took you 16 years to confirm something you already knew?)

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“He has her eyes.”

Oh, that’s cold. Even for you, that’s cold.

“If you truly loved her…”

Goddamn, that’s some cold blooded shit, Dumbledore.

Colin:

Harry should start wearing color contacts. Switch up the eye color, lose the glasses.

And please take note here that Dumbledore knows that Snape loves Lily.

Hear that? Pikachu, take notes!

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“No one can know.”

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“That I should never reveal the best of you, Severus?”

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“That you risk your life every day to protect the boy?”

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This is where we finally get the backstory on that black hand. Poison from a horcrux. Snape was giving him potion to stop the spreading of it, but it still would have killed him within a year.

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“We both know that Voldemort has ordered the Malfoy boy to murder me.”

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“But should he fail, I should presume the Dark Lord will turn to you.”

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“You must be the one to kill me, Severus. It is the only way.”

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“Only then will the Dark Lord trust you completely.”

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“There comes a time when Harry Potter must be told something. But you must wait until Voldemort is at his most vulnerable.”

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“Must be told what?”

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“On the night Voldemort went to Godric’s Hollow to kill Harry, and Lily Potter cast herself between them – the curse rebounded.”

Colin:

Dumbledore calling her Lily “Potter” while recounting this story feels like a fuck you to Snape. You could just say Lily, and we’d all know who you were talking about. Adding the “Potter” does nothing here but to remind Snape of the fact that Lily Evans, the girl he loved his whole life, got married to and knocked up by a guy he hated.

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“When that happened, a part of Voldemort’s soul latched itself onto the only living thing it could find –”

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“Harry himself.”

Colin:

So why does part of Voldemort’s soul latch onto Harry? Is this a horcrux thing or not? Cause if so, where’s the intent to make a horcrux that is supposed necessary and sets aside those murders from regular ones? And if not, why does the soul just latch on? Can other people do that when they die? This is all very convenient. The human soul in this franchise is a lot like The Tingler.

If there’s one thing I cannot stress enough in these articles, it’s that people NEED to see The Tingler. Preferably in a movie theater, with… well, I won’t give it away. But… if you can ever get the full experience… do it. But if not, just see it. It’s fucking incredible.

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“There’s a reason Harry can speak to snakes. There’s a reason he can look into Lord Voldemort’s mind.”

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“A part of Voldemort lives INSIDE him.”

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“So, when the time comes… the boy must die?”

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“Yes.”

Colin:

The moment Rowling introduced the idea of horcruxes and what they were, it was immediately obvious that Harry was the same thing and so the end of the series was pretty clear. But this reveal is still pretty cool, the way they did it – not because you find out that Harry has to die, but because you know that Dumbledore has known all along and that Snape is remorseful about it.

I really liked this moment. Because you do get that sense of, “Wow… Dumbledore is a huge asshole.” In the grand scheme of things, he wasn’t entirely, but the way he explains it to Snape — that’s cold as shit. You could add the extra sentence of, “By the way, Harry is a horcrux, Voldemort needs to kill him so he can destroy it.” Sure, you’re not sure whether he can survive something like that, but at least let us know you care for the fuck instead of just being like, “No. He needs to die so that fuck can die.”

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“Yes. He must die.”

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“You’ve kept him alive so that he can die at the proper moment.”

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“You’ve been raising him like a pig for slaughter.”

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“Don’t tell me now that you’ve grown to care for the boy.”

(This is the coldest line of all. It could be read as not being cold at all and more of a reflection of Snape, but to me that shit comes off as a real asshole thing to say.)

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“Lily?”

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“After all this time?”

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^ ^ ^ ^ ^

(Right, though?)

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“Always.”

Colin:

So now that I’ve pointed out two times over the course of at least a decade where Dumbledore clearly sees how much Snape still loves Lily, I’m confused about this. 

I guess he just figured that now she was dead, Snape was just doing the right thing, since that’s what they had to do. But either way — it’s a great line.

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“So, when the time comes –”

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“The boy must die?”

(Didn’t you ask this already?)

(Also, oh my god, how have I not, in eight movies, made an Ecks vs. Severus joke yet?)

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“Yes. He must die.”

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“Voldemort himself must do it.”

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That’s some heavy shit to find out. I remember reading this chapter in the book and being like, “Fuuuck…” because that was some heavy shit. I was a huge fan of this section of the book.

The question is – how does Voldemort know Harry will come to him? Does he think he’s coming for the snake? Or does he think Harry won’t let his friends actually die? Cause he sure as shit don’t know about the scarcrux.

Colin:

What if Harry bitched out? Here’s how you run this. You keep him locked up with like seven other kids and you raise them all like Spartans. You train them to be hard killers. Then, he’s just another one of the bunch who all have this common goal of fucking up bad guys. Send them all out to kill horcruxes, and then arrange it so that Harry’s the one to go up against Voldemort at the end. Boom. You’re good. It’s this ‘Chosen One’ crap that’s been problematic the whole time. You gotta isolate him in a way to make him not know he’s special.

Or, you could just… do this.

Colin:

The reason I suggest the other way is because it was a little boring having Harry start out as the Chosen One and continue to be the Chosen One and then wind up being the Chosen One after all. It’s so much cooler when you have a regular guy and he does some Chosen One level shit, and then it comes out at the end that someone’s been planning this all along. That’s sort of closer to the Matrix arc, I suppose.

Oh christ… if Harry goes fucking blind and some asshole is doing a Malfoy impression for two movies…

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We’ll END PART III with that. Because you kind of have to.

– – – – – – – – – – –

Tomorrow is Part IV, and the boy who lived coming to die.

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