Monday, July 11, 2005

If we weren't ready for Harry Potter 6 before, we are now

On Saturday, July 17, a boy, scarred from innocence lost, will rise from the ashes and remind us all that heroes can still make the morning headlines. From British blood and global tears, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, like the terrorist threat before 7/7, turns speculation into reality. He will stand beside London police, medics, and emergency workers and mourn the inevitable truth: someone has to die.

We won't know the who, what, when, where, why, and how until the final chapter has been read. And, while most of us will read that final chapter in the final book, no one knows when this war on terror will ever end. When the series does finally end, who will be the next Harry Potter, and who will be the next Lord Voldemort?

In the Summer of 2000, Harry Potter faced the man responsible for killing his parents. Alone and armed only with a life he could not remember, Harry battled and subdued "He-who-must-not-be named" - subdued, not defeated. A year later, terrorists thrust America into a similar worst-case scenario with an enemy capable of changing its shape in accordance with its focus.

In 2003, the world, again, was in desperate need of a hero. The space shuttle Columbia explodes on re-entry. George W. Bush, Jr. announced victory, yet a message from Iraq, written in blood, declared everything but defeat. By July 4th, Harry Potter and his allies minus one, had temporarily calmed the unrest.

Unsubstantiated rumors. Anticipation, complacency...Harry Potter returns to battle evil July 17th. July 7th: the story isn't over. There will be a 7th book. There will be more bloodshed. On, 7/7, we all knew the story would not end in six.

A never-forgotten hero re-emerges on Saturday, 10 days after the terrorist attacks in London, to subdue, once again, an evil everyone believed to be dying or dead. In the hands of the boy that should've died, the globe returns to a fantasy land where love saves and evil is easily identified. On Saturday, a boy from England steps out of from under the shadows of two cardboard towers to say there will be a 7th and Final book.

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