|neviot (e_witness) wrote,|
@ 2007-03-28 20:23:00
|Entry tags:||fangirling, snape|
(Becca, you knew this was coming...)
With the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows not three months around the corner, I've been slowly sinking back into the HP fandom. Okay, no, that would be a lie. I've been sinking rather rapidly back into Severus Snape addiction. Like fast forward 36x. Honestly, if there were ever a fictional character to enthrall me for a decade, it would be him, is him. Not Aragorn, not Gandalf, not Saitou Hajime, not Caius Merlyn Britannicus, not even Mr Stark - if he were fictional that is. Except for Dumbledore ;) but that’s only because D’s the hottest old man over a hundred I’ve ever seen. Snape is so ambiguous and complex of a character, bordering on obscure even, he begs to be examined and dissected and fallen in love with. Yes, I am a complete and utter dork; we knew that. You may move along now and spare yourself. I am mainly writing this for myself, as should be painfully obvious.
So I started browsing through the ‘net for general Snape information, hoping to get back in touch with the character and speculate some before the last book came out and the ultimate question of Severus Snape was answered (if it ever could be). I whipped out the 652-page Half-Blood Prince (American version) as well, but I’ve yet to dive in. I happened upon the website/forum “Chock Full o’ Sevy” (http://www.sevysgal.com/home.html) about three days ago, subscribed, and promptly tumbled head-over-heels. The atmosphere there is cozy and relaxed, and the fellow members are equally smitten with the Potions Master, though all with varying opinions and views on him. It makes for low-key yet in-depth discussions, exactly what my inner fangirl needed to kick her obsession into gear.
Since then, I’ve subscribed to the monthly Snape Cast (http://snapecast.com), read the “Darkness and Light Trilogy” (http://www.fanfiction.net/s/1546145/1/) by R.J. Anderson (a masterpiece, akin to “Irresistible Poison” but even more subtle and incredible because instead of Draco Malfoy, this is Snape, and the OC pairing for him was crafted brilliantly), read a few other fanfictions and some essays* searching for his true nature (mostly defending him, I admit), and embroiled myself in the
worship study of his character.
Snape seems to me these days to be ever more a vulnerable figure than any sort of power player. No, he’s not innocent, and no, I’m not turning him into a victim here (he’d probably slice my arm off for that and then add it to a potion and make me choke it down for good measure). I’m also very aware the man possesses insane will power and self-control on top of sheer intellectual and logical brilliance and quick wits. He’s been sustaining severe torture for most of his adult life, not to mention psychological abuse in his childhood, and to be able to remain as a double agent between the two most powerful wizards alive reveals his steely strength and cunning.
Which brings me to his layers of masks. Because, boy oh boy, does this guy disguise himself. I kind of doubt even JKR knew where she was taking him until book 5 or 6. Despite his aptitude at concealing the truth (just think Occlumency) however, Snape has seemingly cracked a few times throughout the series and even more so in HBP. Occasionally, we catch a glimpse of the wretched creature beneath all those layers and feel a rush of pity for his suffering. Sometimes, it seems like hatred; sometimes, vengefulness. But undoubtedly, even more true than all that, there is wrenching despair and miserable loneliness. He honestly does not have another thing to live for besides his duty and his responsibility to Dumbledore in the fight against Voldemort. To live as he does, an outcast at best in both worlds, is sheer torture in itself – though, of course, he has gotten used to that, hasn’t he? “So weak,” sneers the Dark Lord.
So, from this perspective, which finds its basis solely on the shaky, wishful ruminations of a romantic fangirl I’ll grant you, Snape is near breaking point and has been for a long time. I’ve no doubt he’ll hold out till Voldy dies simply because he must, and he’ll keep his facades all on, but they will leak ever more, revealing worse and worse hurt, and after the whole ordeal, who would blame him if he goes mad and lives out his days in St. Mungo’s? But, he tends to do the unexpected too (like JKR herself), so I can’t end on anything conclusive. Which is the wonderful part of speculation. :) Not that I think he’ll go mad. No, my thoughts about his end I will briefly go over a little later. First:
A Challenge! Devised by Brandyllyn on “Chock Full o’ Sevy”:
J.K. Rowling has said that Book Seven will end with the word ‘scar’. Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to come up with an ending paragraph in which: a) Harry dies, or b) Voldemort wins, which ends with the word ‘scar’.
My (Cheesy) Attempt: “The world wept. Wizards and Muggles alike bowed their heads and folded their hands, hearts heavy with the loss of the Boy-Who-Saved. The ones who had journeyed seven years beside him to the end spent that first day huddled in mourning over the pristine grave. Rain streamed and flowed and washed the world into a new era. In a silent living room on
Now onto possible deaths in Deathly Hallows (just my opinion):
Harry will not die and Snape will die. Killing off the main character at the very end is too cheap a ploy for JKR. She’s been hinting at the likelihood of Harry’s death since OotP with the prophecy, which are not at all the actions of a sneaky author who wants to keep her aces up her sleeves. Harry is also, in my opinion, very much the type of hero who saves the world by age eighteen and then spends the rest of his life in general recluse, struggling with the trauma he has had to bear. A death would arguably be too easy for him.
Now, Snape, on the other hand, has every reason to die, so I believe. To be honest, I just don’t think he’ll be able to handle living after all he’s gone through, and it would actually be an act of mercy to give the poor man some rest. I am in no way saying Snape isn’t strong (God knows the man’s survived enough to kill twelve men twelve times over), but I think he would have a very difficult time dealing with the aftermath. Most people (AKA folks on Harry’s side) aren’t going to be able to accept him with open arms, and especially in the absence of Dumbledore, he would continue to live a very misunderstood and miserable existence. This is all running on the assumption that he is good, which is what I tend to believe, but if, by some small chance, he’s revealed to be Voldy’s henchman or with his own evil intentions, he’s going to die anyway.
Of course, in the ideal world, Dumbledore would still be there, and Snape would lead a more contented life after the end of Deathly Hallows. And maybe get married and have thirteen baby Sevvies playing hide-and-go-seek in his wizarding mansion. …I wonder what he would name them all.
Oh, and Voldy will die. Because HP is still categorized as a children’s fantasy series and some clichés are not to be broken.
* “Denorios’ Essay” (http://denorios.livejournal.com/15782.ht
“Under His Spell” (http://www.baltimoresun.com/features/boo
Excerpts: "’I can teach you how to bottle fame, brew glory, even stopper death,’ he says to his new students in the first Potter book, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, and we thought, cool. A closet poet, our Snape, and frequently funny in an awful, I-can't-believe-he-said-that way. People identify with this thirtysomething man stuck in a hated job, who never gets credit for his good efforts, who is irritable and quick to judge and deeply human.
…’If you took Snape out of the Harry Potter equation, I don't think the books would have as many adult fans,’ she said. ‘He adds the element of complexity that makes the books fascinating to older readers.’
…Then there's what Anelli calls the ‘dark, tortured soul seeking redemption’ mystique…
…’He's the sort of character who ... ends up dying sacrificially to prove his goodness,’ said James Krasner, an associate professor whose specialty at the University of New Hampshire is Victorian literature, and who, more importantly, has $25 riding on his belief that Snape "obviously" killed Dumbledore on Dumbledore's orders. (His teenage son took the bet.)”
“Harry Has It Wrong!” (http://www.gather.com/viewArticle.jsp?ar
Excerpt: “I find it incredibly interesting in crafting and writing the consecutive chapters, ‘The Cave’ and ‘The Lightning-Struck Tower,’ that JKR cleverly structures the earlier chapter to foreshadow the later chapter. Both Harry and Snape act in ways that can be interpreted as following Dumbledore's orders, and identical verbiage is used to describe both Harry and Snape's emotions as they are commanded to do the unthinkable. The following describes Harry when he forces Dumbledore to drink the potion: ‘Hating himself, repulsed by what he was doing, Harry forced the goblet back toward Dumbledore's mouth and tipped it.’ p. 571. Snape is described as follows right before he kills Dumbledore: ‘Snape gazed for a moment at Dumbledore, and there was revulsion and hatred etched in the harsh lines of his face.’ p. 595.”
Also many good readings to be found on “Why Snape?” (http://whysnape.tripod.com/)
Otherwise, I urge you to reserve Deathly Hallows at Borders: http://www.bordersmedia.com/harrypotter/
Forgive me for the self-indulgent post.