Histrionic Listicle Thoughts of a Fangirl While Reading Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: Part 1 Act 2
Do NOT read if you have not finished all of Part 1 (Acts 1 and 2) of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, or there will be a total collapse in the space time continuum!
Have I given enough instructions? Do I have anyone left reading? Eh. I’ve spent the majority of my life talking dramatically at people who aren’t listening, I’m not about to stop now.
Alright, I’ve forsaken all human interaction so I can read Act 2 of this play. Because I like fake people better than real ones, apparently.
Okay so we’re seeing more of Aunt Petunia AKA the ACTUAL worst parent ever. Y’know, considering his horrible, horrible life, Harry is basically Jesus Boy for turning out as kindly as he did.
If Harry woke up, still in the cupboard under the stairs, realizing that his whole seven book journey was just a delusion to help him escape his horrible reality, would he be disappointed or relieved?
Wow, I’m kind of a bummer right now. This play can be kind of a bummer. Where’s Fred and George when you need them?
I AM SUCH A BUMMER.
Professor McGonagall is Headmistress of Hogwarts. Hermione is Minister of Magic. Please tell me Molly Weasley is enjoying her retirement from being Supermom as Head of the Interior or something because this world rocks.
God, how old is Professor McGonagall now?
“PROFESSOR McGONAGALL: I can give you Professor Longbottom — his knowledge of plants might be useful — and —
Suddenly there is a rumble in the chimney. Professor McGonagall looks at it, concerned. Then Hermione tumbles out.
Aren’t there more pressing “running the Wizarding World” issues the Minister of Magic should be doing right now, anyway? Instead of joining a search party on a glorified amber alert? I guess Hermione’s default is still set to “saving Harry’s ass.”
Suddenly there is another rumble in the chimney and Draco comes down hard, surrounded by cascading soot and dust…
DRACO: Sorry about your floor, Minerva.
It is a sad state of affairs when Draco Malfoy is the only one with manners around here. C’mon trio, that’s Minerva Fudging McGonagall!
Are Delphi and Albus…flirting?! Isn’t she in her 20s? And Albus is like 14? Okay, we may need that amber alert after all, Minister. Run away, little boy!
“Scorpius appears at the back of the stage. He looks at his friend talking to a girl — and part of him likes it and part of him doesn’t.”
THESE TWO ARE SO IN LOVE GUYS.
AND I AM NOT TALKING ABOUT DELPEDOPHINI AND ALBUS
You know, of all the characters JK Rowling killed with her Death Stick, Cedric is probably the one I care least about coming back to life.
Okay so we’re seeing Bane the Centaur but not Neville. Sure.
Guess they were worried they couldn’t find someone as hot as Matthew Lewis.
Which, let’s be real, they can’t.
I wonder how they do the centaur costume.
“SCORPIUS: All I ever wanted to do was go to Hogwarts and have a mate to get up to mayhem with. Just like Harry Potter. And I got his son. How crazily fortunate is that.”
No, seriously, this has to be canon, right? Look, I love my friends, but, like normal people, I express affection by calling them smelly little shits. Like a healthy person. The only way a 14 year old says this to another human being is if a boner is involved.
Ludo Bagman ragging on Beauxbatons. Heh. French burn.
Wow Scorpius and Albus are really bad at stealth mode.
“YOUNG HERMIONE [to Scorpius in Durmstrang robes]: Who’s Rose? And what’s happened to your accent?”
Oh, so all Durmstrang students have to have an accent, Hermione?
Harry sitting beside his son in the hospital wing that he spent an inordinate amount of time in as an adolescent gives me feels.
DUMBLEDORE HOLY MERLIN IT’S DUMBLEDORE
Harry is like a Jewish mother. “Why don’t you cuall more Dumbledore?” “I’m not even a real person, Harry.” “Still, it’d be nice if you cualled.”
If you knew the size of my nose you’d know I’m allowed to make that joke.
“HARRY: I’ve never asked how you felt about me naming him after you, have I?
DUMBLEDORE: Candidly, Harry, it seemed a great weight to place upon the poor boy.”
Albus has three names and he feels like he can’t live up to any of them.
Technically someone may have pointed this out to me, but if he’s going to point things out that make me cry face emoji then I’m gonna robber emoji his ass.
“DUMBLEDORE: You must see him as he is, Harry. You must look for what’s wounding him.”
Dumbledore, now is really not the time to be vague. You know Harry wasn’t sorted into Ravenclaw for a reason. The dude can only work with specifics.
But also Harry’s trying to reach out to the closest person he thought of as a father who was never really a father because he had to put the good of the Wizarding World before the good of Harry and Harry knows that but it doesn’t stop him from asking the echo of this man how to connect to his son because he has no idea how to have a child-parent relationship because he never had one himself and all he wants to do is give his son what he never had but that just makes the pressure even worse on them both and OH MY GOOD FEELS
“DUMBLEDORE: Ah really, what does my opinion matter anymore? I am paint and memory, Harry, paint and memory. And I never had a son.
HARRY: But I need your advice.
Harry looks at Albus and then back at Dumbledore. But Dumbledore is gone.”
OF COURSE HE’S GONE HE’S ALWAYS GONE AND HARRY WASN’T REALLY HIS SON
Some people with traumatic pasts self medicate with alcohol or drugs. Harry medicates with chocolate. I understand this.
HAROLD JAMES POTTER HOW DARE YOU ABUSE THE MARAUDER’S MAP FOR AUTHORITARIAN PURPOSES WHAT WOULD FRED SAY
I have a hard time believing Professor McGonagall would actually agree to be in charge of keeping two students apart by monitoring them on a map, doesn’t she have more important things to take care of? Maybe she’d ask the Head of House to do it? But definitely not the Headmistress.
I guess the Chosen One gets some liberties.
“HARRY: I thought for a long time I wasn’t a good enough dad for you because you didn’t like me. It’s only now I realize that I don’t need you to like me, I need you to obey me because I’m your dad and I do know better. I’m sorry, Albus. It has to be this way.”
Okay, as painful as this was to read and imagine, and as much as I wanna smack Harry in the face right now, this feels super real to me. Most parents come to this realization at some point, that it’s more important to create a better life for their child than it is to have their child like them. Which it is…it’s just that Harry isn’t doing so good a job of creating a better life for his child at this particular moment, mostly because he’s so frightened of the darkness that engulfed his childhood doing the same to Albus. I WILL FIGHT ANYONE WHO SAYS THIS ISN’T CONSISTENT CHARACTERIZATION I FEEL THIS PEOPLE I FEEL IT
Albus, you stepped on a butterfly and now Dad-Joke Ron is gone. …but that might be for the best.
So now Ron is married to Padma Patil and has a son named Panju. Which means that Albus basically killed Rose and Hugo. BUT now if they un-do this reality, they’ve basically killed Panju. So it’s time to play…which cousin do you prefer be alive?! These kids are gonna be SO MESSED UP FROM THIS.
“PROFESSOR McGONAGALL: I’m not sure this is what the Marauder’s Map was intended for.”
EVEN PROFESSOR RULES-ARE-RULES KNOWS THIS SPITS ON THE GRAVES OF FRED AND ALL THE MARAUDERS GODDAMIT HAROLD.
“PROFESSOR McGONAGALL: A head teacher’s portrait is a memoir. It is supposed to be a support mechanism for the decisions I have to make. But I was advised as I took the job to not mistake the painting for the person. And you would be well-advised to do the same.”
JK Rowling just takin’ care of some more plot holes that these damn kids have been yelling about for nine years.
Also continuing the theme of characters being dictated by the echoes of their pasts in a way that does disservice to the present.
But mostly the plot hole thing.
Actually it is a nice clarification. I always wondered why they didn’t just make Dumbledore’s portrait Headmaster of Hogwarts.
WHOA HARRY YOU DO NOT TALK TO MINERVA LIKE THAT
I appreciate that when Harry says stupid shit to his kids, Ginny is like, “You’ll figure it out,” but when he talks to McGonagall rudely she’s like, “BITCH WHAT YOU DOIN”
Whoa Harry just threatened McGonagall with Ministry intervention! This is Sectusempra Harry coming out to play!
“ALBUS: But you’re not this mean.
HERMIONE: And that’s twenty points from Gryffindor to assure Albus Potter that I am this mean.”
I relate a little too much to angry Professor Hermione.
Which is why I never babysat as a teenager.
So…because Hermione didn’t marry Ron…she’s a mean professor instead of Minister of Magic?
I get they’re trying to say that Hermione and Ron improve each other, but I have a hard time believing not being married to Ron keeps Hermione from still “wanting to do some good in the world.” Maybe something horrible happened to Hermione, or she became too frustrated with unfeeling bureaucracy, and Ron was the one who helped her through it? But I’m basically calling shenanigans on this one.
Aw, Harry and Draco are dueling. Just like old times.
I’m not even joking. This made me really nostalgic.
Again, this is why I do not teach children.
“GINNY (drier than dry): What did I miss?”
Basically the late 80s.
“SCORPIUS: You’ve never been to Hogwarts?
DELPHI: I was — unwell — as a child — for a few years. Other people got to go — I did not.”
NU UH BITCH YOU SAID PEOPLE AT SCHOOL SAID THERE WASN’T A HOLE YOU DIDN’T PUT YOUR FOOT IN YOU LYING WHAT’S UP DELPEDOPHINI I SEE YOU
“DELPHI: Albus needs you, Scorpius. That’s a wonderful thing … Find him, Scorpius. You two — you belong together.
They really do, Pedophini, they really do.
“DRACO: Sorry about your kitchen, Ginny.
GINNY: Oh, it’s not my kitchen. Harry does most of the cooking.”
FEMINIST WAR CRY OF JOY
“DRACO: Maybe the black cloud Bane saw was Albus’s loneliness. His pain. His hatred. Don’t lose the boy. You’ll regret it. And so will he. Because he needs you, and Scorpius, whether or not he knows it.”
Okay, JK Rowling DEFINITELY watched A Very Potter Sequel.
“SCORPIUS: Because of what we did, Rose wasn’t even born. Do you remember being told about the Triwizard Tournament Yule Ball? All the four Triwizard champions took a partner. Your dad took Parvati Patil, Viktor Krum took —
ALBUS: Hermione. And Ron got jealous and behaved like a prat.”
Okay, I can buy Albus knowing the story of how his aunt and uncle began dating, but how does Scorpius know!? Although the idea of Draco Malfoy tucking his little boy in at night and telling him the story about his nemeses’ adolescent dating lives is a rather entertaining image, it’s a bit far fetched.
So the hinge factor of Ron and Hermione dating and then getting married was Ron’s jealousy of Krum!?
“SCORPIUS: … Professor Croaker’s law – the furthest someone can go back in time without the possibility of serious harm to the traveler or time itself is five hours. And we went back years.”
If you squirt this page with lemon juice, you can read, “So stop asking me why they didn’t just use the time turners to solve all their problems, ok?!” in JK Rowling’s handwriting.
Scorpius, no matter how many times you say Rose’s name, I am not going to buy that she is the one you’re in love with.
Also, Albus, you should probably care just a little more that your cousins no longer exist. Maybe.
Scorpius laying down some veritaserum truth syrup here.
“PROFESSOR McGONAGALL (from off — trying to give them every chance): I am about to enter.”
I just love this bitch.
“[Professor McGonagall] looks back at the map, she looks at the boys. She smiles to herself.
PROFESSOR MCGONAGALL: Well, if I didn’t see you, I didn’t see you.
“ALBUS: I don’t think Voldemort is capable of having a kind son — and you’re kind, Scorpius. To the depths of your belly, to the tips of your fingers.”
Um, Mr. Thorne, sir? NO ONE TALKS LIKE THAT.
“Albus smiles and stretches out a hand.
but actually that was horribly mean c’mon writers don’t do that to my ovaries
Scorpius thinks Albus’s idea to humiliate Cedric into not performing well is a “really good strategy.”
These two are aggressively not bright.
Professor McGonagall is onstage on her own. She looks at the map. She frowns to herself. She taps it with her wand. She smiles to herself at a good decision made.
PROFESSOR McGONAGALL: Mischief managed.”
Minerva telling Chosen One Harry Potter that she doesn’t care what Ministry powers he brings down on her, she’s not playing into his idiocy, BECAUSE BOSS
“PROFESSOR McGONAGALL: Well, [Albus and Scorpius] are together.
DRACO: In the girls’ bathroom on the first floor. What on earth would they be doing there?”
Same thing Ron and Hermione were doing in there.
“MOANING MYRTLE: What did you call me? Do I moan? Am I moaning now? AM I? AM I?
SCORPIUS: Do, I didn’t mean…
MOANING MYRTLE: What’s my name?”
MOANING MYRTLE: Exactly — Myrtle. Myrtle Elizabeth Warren –“
I — I’m not sure what to do with that. So we’re just gonna blow past it.
“MOANING MYRTLE: I think it was a secret, but I could never keep anything from you, Harry. How is it you’ve grown handsomer and handsomer as you’ve aged? And you’re taller.”
Was that…was that a burn on Daniel Radcliffe? Was that a Daniel Radcliffe is short joke!? Please say it was. I just imagine JK Rowling telling Jack Thorne to put that in there, and Daniel Radcliffe seeing the show, and getting to that line, and just facepalming like “Goddamit Jo, ya got me.”
Wow. I really need to sit in a corner and re-evalaute my life choices.
After I finish reading the play about MY FRIENDS.
“And then Cedric starts to grow — and grow again — and grow some more. He looks around himself — entirely panicked. And the boys watch as Cedric ascends helplessly through the water.”
HOW DO THEY DO THIS ON STAGE. HOW.
“LUDO BAGMAN: … Oh my, it gets wilder still, around Cedric, fireworks explode declaiming — ‘Ron loves Hermione’ — and the crowd loved that — oh, ladies and gentlemen, the look on Cedric’s face.”
Scorpius and Albus thought sky writing would change Ron and Hermione’s feelings towards each other. These two are so stupid it’s actually a little adorable.
“DOLORES UMBRIDGE: Scorpius Malfoy. Get out of the lake.”
NO NO NO
ANYTHING BUT YOU.
“DOLORES UMBRIDGE: “Miss? I’m Professor Umbridge, the headmistress of your school, I’m no ‘Miss.’”
“DOLORES UMBRIDGE: … Now come along — I don’t know what game you’re playing but you’re upsetting the dementors and entirely ruining Voldemort Day.”
I…I don’t even know how to feel about this.
HE WAS UPSETTING THE DEMENTORS.
Is this…supposed to be hilarious? Because it is. Objectively “You’re upsetting the dementors and entirely ruining Voldemort Day” is a HILARIOUS sentence.
…but it seems a little inappropriate because we’re about to end the entire first play on the realization that the world is completely fucked, Voldemort AKA Wizard Hitler won and achieved world domination, and basically everyone we know and love is dead.
I need to know how this is acted. Is it played for laughs? Is it supposed to be just scary? A little of both?
Either way, it looks like Albus and Scorpius just made a huge, tiny mistake.
Well, I guess that’s the end of Part 1…I should go try and do that human adulting thing…and I’ll see you again on Voldemort Day?
Note: Once again, please don’t put any spoilers for Part Two in the comments section, in case anyone reading hasn’t finished yet!