What Makes Harry Potter Such a Big Phenomenon
Updated: May 21
It has been 9 years since the main storyline of Harry Potter took the world stage on the silver screen and even after the 9 years, it feels like it was just yesterday that I had picked up the books or gone to the theater to watch one of the movies and witnessed the wonder and magic of Harry Potter all over again!
Over the course of these 9 years, we have seen the world of Harry Potter grow and thrive as the fans of the franchise who call themselves Potterheads made the wizarding world a part of their own lives. They embraced the Potter universe and took to the internet to start discussions, make stories, artwork and so much more! To stoke the fire to the flame, J.K. Rowling also worked with a digital team to create Pottermore where these Potterheads could really immerse themselves and jump into the world of Witches and Wizards. I would like to say I was a part of this bunch as well! But what is it that led us to be this invested in this series? What was it that led us to actively make the decision to have it be a part of our lives where we speak to others about which Hogwarts House we have been sorted into?
To me, personally, I think it was the fact that JK Rowling decided to keep magic as a supporting factor in the story rather than the main focus. It wasn't that Harry was learning how to be the most powerful wizard or he wanted to learn each and every spell in the world or so on, rather it was the fact that these stories gave us much more than the wonder of magic. They gave us a world where these characters grew as people, where we saw The Golden Trio face trials and tribulations. These stories were mysteries that happened to take place in a magical setting.
It started with trying to find out what Fluffy (Our lovely giant three-headed dog; who is also a good boy!) was guarding in the first book. It reigned us in, it made us question what was going on and compelled us to keep on reading to find out. We saw these three kids, who were around our age when we were introduced to them, go about embarking on an adventure where we were the fourth friend who basically always had a cloak of invisibility on the whole time.
It wasn't just the mystery, but we also got privy to their relationships, the small details that JK Rowling decided to add into the books to enhance the characters. Like how Ron, who was always bickering with Hermione all the time, would not hesitate to stand up to anyone else and would answer back to them to support his friend and future wife! Like the time when Snape asked a question in class, Hermione answered but had points taken off from Gryffindor but as soon as Professor Snape called her a know it all and did that, Ron quickly comes to her defense and says 'You asked us a question and she knows the answer! Why ask if you don't want to be told?'. Things like hearing Harry's thoughts and seeing Draco go through the trauma he did, all of it made us understand the characters on a deeper level.
The fact that we can talk about the different aspects and quirks that make up each character in the Potterverse is a testament to the literature written by JK Rowling in Harry Potter. We get to know small details about each and every character and we get to see them take their own journeys where they grow, overcome obstacles, and learn from their mistakes.
This series did not take off just because it spoke about magic, it took off because it spoke to us on a personal level. It made this idea of magic very human, the idea that these witches and wizards are just like us. It made kids all over the world want to receive this letter from Hogwarts and be able to go there and have their own adventure, form their own relationships, and have fun along the way.
The true beauty of it all is, JK Rowling succeeded in fulfilling this want. These kids did get to go on adventures, they formed relationships with Potterheads all around the world, they played games, made art, created their own magic and brought this world to life in our own reality. That is the true beauty of Harry Potter, the mystery, the intrigue, and the characters themselves that felt more like friends than characters on screen or in a book. That is the reason why we love it so much and why we see parents who grew up with this series reading it to their kids and introducing them to our old friends. Hogwarts is our second home and even with its dangers, it remains a place of comfort for us all.
That is why when someone questions our love for Harry Potter and asks us 'Even after all this time?'
Our only answer is 'Always'.
While I write about why Harry Potter was such a phenomenon, Zee and I go on a journey through the books and movies of this franchise. We had to divide this topic into two episodes and you can hear us talk about the first 3 books and movies in the first part!
You can find our episode right here: https://bit.ly/potterhead-podcast-part-1
This is 1000Minus7 signing out! Mischief Managed ;)