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Epilogue -- Nineteen Years Later

The Crapilogue was sporked by enolabloodygay. Happy Valentine's Day, folks!

***

Nineteen Years Later...


In which the Famous Five Meet the Secret Seven in Gull Cove...or something. And everything is just Grrrr-eat! And it makes me want to barf.

Oh good – it's still 1950, even though we have done the whole misty screen bit, everything's gone wavy, calendars have appeared on the screen, pages have been torn off to indicate the passing of time and –did anyone bring lashings and lashings of ginger beer?

No? Damn.

Must be...er, 19 years later than when we last saw Harry, two pages ago. Doesn't time fly? And now it's the future. I'd work out what year it was, but I've lost the will to live, never mind read. As for typing...I'm only doing this for you, kids!

Anyway, it's some time in the future, even for us, and global warming has obviously been sorted out as September now has autumnal frosts, just like it used to when JKR and I were kids and the first day of school was cold and crisp and the long hot days of summer were behind us and we couldn't find our punctuation. But we weren't best-selling authors then, were we, Jo? And I'm still not, but what's your excuse?

Anyway, here we all are, on a day crisp as an apple (anyone want the first bite? There's probably maggots in it.) and the Family Potter are bobbing (I'm not even going to make the obvious joke about it being a street not a bloody ocean) across the rumbling street and Little Lily whines she wants to go to Hogwarts NOW.

Well, you can't, you stupid brat – even Harry knows that and has told you so – get over it.

Finally the commuting Muggles get a mention – they look at the owls!

But don't get too hung up on this mention of Muggles in London – we're British, we can ignore this sort of thing and get back to reading the Financial Times or (more likely) 'The Sun'.

It's true. Honestly.

James and Albus (still got the adoration of DD, I see, despite all that has gone before) are arguing about the possibility of Albus being in Slytherin. Does the great, good and grown-up Harry Potter point out that one of the bravest men he ever knew, who did more to bring down Voldemort than he did, was a Slytherin?

Of course not. Really, don't be so daft. Harry is forever frozen in time, as emotionally developed as er, well as a five year old, as far as I can make out. Why would he ever give credit to Severus Snape?

Harry Did It All. Single-handedly. Honest.

Ginny, who has obviously turned into Molly Weasley in the intervening years, tells them to be quiet – how useful of the woman. And James catches her eye. Difficult catch that – no doubt he'll be Seeker in Gryffindor's Quidditch team before the term's out.

James makes his apparently suicidal dash at the wall (please note the Muggles take no notice. I did tell you they wouldn't).

We're left on the platform with Albus begging for reassurance that his parents will write to him. Please note that Albus is a sensitive soul and we know what that means. Ginny treacherously tells him how many times they wrote to his brother (is no secret sacred to this woman?) and Harry actually says something vaguely reassuring too – I think he thought he was to talking to Gred and Forge when he said 'Your brother – he likes a laugh' but maybe I am reading too much into this.

They now approach the barrier and Albus winces. Why? As they brought Lily along to say goodbye to him, I presume they brought him along to say goodbye to James, so why would he be wincing? He knows it works.

And now they're on the platform, which was obscured by clouds of white steam. Why? I actually remember steam trains and even if you had several of them on the station, you could still see perfectly clearly.

But I suppose it makes it more romantic and gives them an excuse to avoid Percy, who is possibly the only person in the books to ever admit he was wrong. But he was boring too, so let's not waste time on someone who actually showed a bit of character growth.

Eventually, the wizards who obviously can't get rid of a bit of steam find who they are looking for. It's Ron and Hermione! Has everyone who fell in love at school stayed with their childhood sweethearts?

How unlikely. And how dull!

Pointless dialogue ensues (when doesn't it?), allowing Ron to be the comic turn once again and ending in 'no pressure' on the 11 year-old children facing their first term at Hogwarts. Nice one, you pathetic, emotionally stunted bunch.

Ooh look – there's Draco. Funnily enough, his son looks just like him, as does Harry's son. Have they started cloning wizards now?

More pressure and prejudice is inflicted on the children. Well done, Jo – let's not ever keep an open mind. Heaven forbid that anything should change in Potterverse, even after what is apparently the most important war ever waged.

Ron warns his daughter, Rose, (is this the first name that hasn't been handed down from dead characters? Oh no, there was Draco's son, Scorpius. And if calling him that isn't setting him up to the bad boy of the future, I don't know what is.)

Sorry, got caught up in Jo-style rambling there. Ron warns Rose not be friends with him and Hermione, who has obviously been warped by long contact with Ron and Harry, is half amused. No more open-mindedness or fairness from her then.

Anyway, after further evidence of extreme prejudice from the Trio, James comes back to tell us Teddy is snogging Victoire. Lily (bless-her-little-cotton-socks-I-don't-think) thinks how lovely it would be if they got married!

How much more incestuous do you want the wizarding world to be? In a few generations they'll be so inbred we'll be calling them King Harry James Albus Sirius and Queen Lily Molly Hermione Virginia.

Anyway, it's made perfectly clear that Teddy is already practically part of the family – well, that's a relief; given his past performances, I expected Harry to forget all about his obligations and responsibilities to a child made orphan by his actions.

Finally the kids start getting on the train. Are we finally going to get to the end of this singularly pointless epilogue and be able to throw the book away for good? I do hope so.

James (like his namesake) dashes heedlessly on to the train where he will no doubt join the sycophantic bunch of friends he has, who will applaud his bullying as it is disguised as good natured fun and practical jokes.

Albus (sensitive little soul that he is) hangs back to say goodbye properly and also to confide his biggest fear to his father 'What if I'm in Slytherin?'

As Harry bends down to reassure him, we find that Albus has inherited Lily's eyes. Thank God for that, I thought Harry was hanging on to them like the selfish git that he is. Finally, Harry tells Albus that Severus was a Slytherin and one of the bravest men he ever knew – but only for Albus and Ginny's ears – Heaven forbid that he should say it out loud to other people. He also tells him the Hat takes personal preference into consideration – something he had never told any of his children before. Still keeping the secrets Harry? Well done. Good boy.

Have a chocolate drop for learning from DD's mistakes. Not.

At long last, the students are swarming on to the train and saying goodbye to their parents. Stay with me, people – the end is finally in sight!

People are staring at the Potter/Weasley tribe and apparently Albus doesn't know why. Oh come on, even if Harry hadn't spent the last 19 years boasting about it, the kid must have been brought up in a cupboard under the stairs not to have heard about it from other people. Maybe he was. Maybe Harry thought it would be character-forming for him – it worked for Harry, after all!

Ron does 'comic relief' again and dispels the tension that I wasn't feeling.

The train pulls out and Ginny tells Harry he'll be all right. Of course he will, in case anyone had forgotten, the egomaniacal, ever-so-slightly-insane megalomaniac is DEAD!

Duh-eh-ah-duh. Dead. No more Voldemort – as JKR heavy-handedly reminds us with yet another mention of The Boy Who Bores Me's lightning scar.

It's not hurting any more. All is well.

Too right it is – I've reached the end of the most pointless five pages of Ms Rowling's prose and that's saying something!

Can I have my ginger-beer now?

***



Only it's not! Hurrah!

Tomorrow we will be discussing exactly why we think "All was well" should go down as one of the greatest literary lies ever.

Comments

( 57 comments — Leave a comment )
pigeonsfromhell
14th Feb, 2008 15:18 (UTC)
Brilliant sporking!
Thanks to everyone for writing this. DH made me feel terribly depressed and isolated, because I was afraid no one else could see how stupid and cruel it was. This had been just what I needed. (Hurray, I'm not completely crazy after all)

I'd like to recommend a post-DH fic that deals with the consequences of victory.
http://www.fanfiction.net/s/3682339/1/The_Golden_Age

Thank you, thank you again! I can't wait to read your final assessment.
octoberstorm
14th Feb, 2008 15:22 (UTC)
That's one thing that really bothers me. HOW THE HELL ARE HARRY'S KIDS IGNORANT OF WHO HE IS? You'd think that they'd be told just so that they know how to deal with Harry's scores of loyal followers?

I suppose it's possible they're close with Rose and Hugo because they've never been exposed to other children and were never allowed to read the Daily Prophet, but really, WTF? They've never gone anywhere in public with Harry, who'd probably be chased down by nubile young witches and old ladies screaming about what a nice young savior he is. Apparently no one recognizes Ginny the Quidditch Goddess as a celebrity either.

Albus Severus is in for a BIG surprise. Even if he does manage to sort somewhere other than Slytherin.
enolabloodygay
14th Feb, 2008 23:32 (UTC)
"HOW THE HELL ARE HARRY'S KIDS IGNORANT OF WHO HE IS?"

I was screaming that at the book (since I couldn't get JK on the phone) and I still have no answers! Memory charms maybe? Or censorship of the kids'friends and reading matter? Because we SO know that works, don't we?

I'm still sticking with the theory they were all locked in the cupboard under the stairs till they were 11, so Harry and Ginny could go out and be lionised without the bovver of the kids.

No more than I would expect from this book though - why expect continuity in the epilogue when it was conspicuous by its absence throughout the book?
berseker
14th Feb, 2008 15:43 (UTC)
So what do we have here? Our heroes are prejudiced as ever, still fond of bending the rules and cheat (Ron´s driver license, anyone?) and still doing the same thing every parent in the book has done, that is, not paying enough attention to the children, because Harry and Ginny seems to miss the fact that Albus is a tad too nervous and James a bit on the bullying side.

Plus, this epilogue is BORING. I could enjoy this next-generation thing, if it was well-done, but the way it is? Meh. Boring, boring, boring.
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professor_mum
14th Feb, 2008 16:26 (UTC)
Sorry, got caught up in Jo-style rambling there

Oh, what to say that will make a difference? I'll forever love Books 1-6, and admire Jo, but this-here finale effort was a major letdown D-U-D. I'll say it again even though I was criticized in some LJ parts: I feel like she just wanted this part of her life over, and she rushed through the last book, assisted by her snoozy editors. There are quite a few decent ideas and themes in DH, but Jo seems all over the place plot-wise and her writing feels off its usual game. It's almost like she forgot her valuable and carefully constructed Potterverse (3 words: Snape Shaped Hole).

But thanks to everyone here, really. It's quite theraputic in dealing with my disappointment. I don't expect to love everything an author produces, but the fact that I was let down by this particular finale stings. Sigh.
octoberstorm
14th Feb, 2008 19:21 (UTC)
I know. I am astounded by the amount of people who claimed to have loved the book, but I'm more than disgusted with the people on LJ who seem to view valid crits of plot holes and inconsistancies that you could parade the international space station through as zomg so meen you're harshing my squee, it's an end to an era blah blah blah!

I'm just waiting in horror of what's ~10 years down the line, because I doubt JKR will succeed in her adult book endeavors. A Next Gen series or a HP: Animated TV Show! are sure to follow, along with the dreaded Book of Contradictory, Plot Breaking Facts.
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loopyloonyluna
14th Feb, 2008 16:37 (UTC)
Crapilogue says it all. Why Rowling decided to inflict it on us I cannot say.

The only thing I can recommend about it is how easily it can be ignored. At least there is fanfic to console ourselves with.
delphinapterus
14th Feb, 2008 17:26 (UTC)
*hands ginger beer* Great spork. I love the looney tunes ending.

What do they even let Malfoys into Hogwarts? Really with this level of continual intolerance from the Great Potter and his Gang why wouldn't Malfoy send Scorpius somewhere that he wouldn't face automatic intolerance because of his birth? More to the point with all the talk about how the Houses need to return to the glory days of working together why is the complete intolerance towards Syltherin being continued - that is not going to bring the Houses together.

Much as I detest the section on Snape's eternal love for the beautiful, kind, perfect, lovely Lily Potter and his unbelievable death I think the Epilogue is, in some ways, even worse. The wizarding world went through a civil war and absolutely nothing has changed. Perfect Potter and insensitive Ron still rule with their fembots by their side (what happened to Hermione?). As unintentionally depressing epilogues go I think this one deserves the top stop.
jodel_from_aol
14th Feb, 2008 19:27 (UTC)
More to the point: how is the Hat still Sorting kids when Voldemort *set it on fire* and nobody took the time (in the middle of a battle) to put it out?

This travesty of an epilogue is proof positive that Rowling has learned nothing in 17 years of trying to write in a genre that (she claims) she doesn't particularly like. It is painfully obvious that she hasn't a clue of what you can and what you can not pull in fantasy, and have any expectation of pulling it off.

She's told us time and again that the epilogue was written first. When she wrote this nonsense she barely even knew who the characters were. In fact, my opinion of her artistic judgement has fallen to the point that I think it may be perfectly reasonable to float the theory that the 749-page character assassination that we've just plowed through was mainly for the purpose of dragging the characters back to the point that these cartoon sketches would still fit.

i.e., She wrote the epilogue as a "promise to herself that she would get there". Never mind that a better writer and a more honest storyteller might by this time have wanted to go someplace else by now.
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asphodeline
14th Feb, 2008 19:36 (UTC)
Fabulous, thank you!!

I'm going to miss my everyday chapter spork but once again, I've been thoroughly reminded of how awful that book is. Is it my imagination or does it get gradually worse as it progresses?

Great spork!
shyfoxling
14th Feb, 2008 22:11 (UTC)
It kind of goes up and down, but I do think the end is worse than the beginning, so there's an overall downward trend.
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minkhollow
14th Feb, 2008 21:24 (UTC)
And to think, this would have been a perfect place for her to explain how the wizarding world had changed since the fall of Voldiething.
Pity the only appreciable difference is the sprog.
smurasaki
15th Feb, 2008 00:51 (UTC)
And the lack of that change combined with "all is well" pretty much sums up what's wrong with the series. And with Harry. Who knew utter self-centeredness was a Gryffindor trait.
*sigh*
Though I am looking forward to the discussion.
enolabloodygay
14th Feb, 2008 23:14 (UTC)
Thanks!
To all of you who enjoyed my efforts at the Crapilogue (gehayi or Erastes word, not mine).

It was my first effort at anything like this, so thanks for the encouragement. I have to admit, my first thought was to write 'The five most pointless pages the witless woman ever wrote - the end' but I had much more twisted fun pulling it to pieces.

The Looney Tunes ending, highly appropriate as it was, was again from Erastes or gehayi, I won't take credit for their brilliance - I enjoyed the surprise of it as much as you did.

*glugs ginger beer gratefully*
gehayi
15th Feb, 2008 04:42 (UTC)
Re: Thanks!
Calling it the Crapilogue was my idea; I found the word on LJ and it seemed to describe the epilogue perfectly.

The Looney Tunes ending was from erastes.

You did a brilliant job of sporking, enolabloodygay. It's amazing how much can go wrong with the wizarding world in five pages, isn't it?
rattyrayvn
15th Feb, 2008 02:03 (UTC)
Isn't it funny, what slapped me in the face the most was the fact that everyone marries their FIRST LOVE OMG!!11 (and people like Cho and Lavender don't count because they were zomg stoopid!!1) Well, you know what I mean. Where do we see anyone marrying a Muggle? Am I meant to believe that none of the characters ever met anyone who didn't go to Hogwarts?

...wow. No wonder wizards are so mad. They've probably never even *seen* Muggles.

Also, you're right. The entire Potterverse is stuck in a time warp where everything's the shiny-shiny 1950s and Nobody. Ever. Learns. Anything.
smurasaki
15th Feb, 2008 03:58 (UTC)
The sad thing is that even in their schooling, they met people who didn't go to Hogwarts. But the books make it only too clear that those who go to Hogwarts are superior to everyone else, and, of course, those who are sorted into Gryffindor are superior to other Hogwartians. Blech.

It just hit me. Do we have any reason to believe that other wizarding schools sort? I don't remember Viktor or Fleur mentioning Houses in their schools. (Hmm, Viktor. I think he makes the (very short) list of characters I don't hate after DH. That makes, what, four?)
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quaternionworld
15th Feb, 2008 02:06 (UTC)
Great sporking!

I was thoroughly unimpressed by the epilogue (and disgusted by 'all was well'). From book 5 onwards (and latest scenes of book 4), my own canon decided Harry was developing some form of depression. That explained why he became alternatively emo and angry in OotP, his over-reaction over Cedric (whom he barely knew ! He didn't grieve Sirius for that long), why we continuously heard of Dementors, why he couldn't do Occlumency, why he decided to go kill himself and his pals in the DoM (or at least didn't do anything to avoid it), why he was unable to think about anything or anyone but himself and Voldemort during these books, why he didn't grieve for either Sirius or Dumbledore beyond 'they're not there for me anymore' and his sheer inaction. It also explained how on Earth he could walk to Voldemort and ask to be killed.

And I learn Harry didn't, in fact, kill himself in the following 19 years, treated Ginny well enough that she stayed with him and 'all was well' ?
Wow.
nyxfixx
15th Feb, 2008 17:16 (UTC)
Ah, reading through these sporkings each day was SO much more satisfying than suffering through the actual book! Too bad it has to end! Thanks, everyone - mods, sporkers and commenters - for a great, great ride!

It was fun, illuminating and strangely reassuring. Maybe all isn't actually, you know, "well" here at the end of the sporks, but it's certainly a lot better. Which is more than we can say for the WW.
alias_iii
15th Feb, 2008 22:07 (UTC)
Late comer
I've only just discovered this com through a friend. Alas, I'm late. I, too, was worried that I was one of a very few scattered souls who thought the end of the series was disappointing at best, a new color of paint on an old regime at middling, and utterly repulsive at worst. It's a good thing that all of the interesting characters died off or Obliviated and reprogrammed by Molly Weasley, because I think they all would have offed themselves long before the epilogue just for something to do. I remember thinking that the WW was so much fun so very long ago...back in June....

Anyway, I look forward to reading more of the sporking, and I really appreciate the dose of sanity.
paperbrink
16th Feb, 2008 05:16 (UTC)
Woah. I've been reading this sporking since its infacny, but have never had an account with which to comment. So - this whole thing has been an amazing, amazing ripping to shreds of a chapter in canon best forgotten. Endless thanks and kudos to you all.
snapes_witch
17th Feb, 2008 07:02 (UTC)
I might have been able to accept DH even though seriously flawed, but the epilogue put fini to that!

Thanks for the wonderful spork! How did I manage to miss all those superfluous or misplaced commas -- and the inappropriate colons!
marionros
7th Sep, 2009 12:21 (UTC)
Forever 1950? You wish! If the Potter books were written in the 1950's, Harry would've never gotten away with his rude, contemptious-at-adults-and-especially-teachers 'tude, the Marauders would've been expelled as the criminal bullies ('bad lot', they'd say in the fifties) they were and the point of the books would be to show that Harry was a stupid little boy at the start, full of prejudices, but that by embracing values as Integrity, Self Control and Hard Work, as well as Fair Play and Courage, would emerge as a sensible, kind and likeable boy.
Well, that was the theme of every 1950's (and 1930's, 1920's and 1910's) schoolstory I've ever read.

No, the Wizarding World is forever trapped in 1984, with the (spirit of) Dumbledore as Big Brother and Gryffindor boots grinding Slytherin faces into the ground, forever.
( 57 comments — Leave a comment )