Sunday, June 24, 2007

Harry Potter and Spoilers: An Occasion for Basking

The huge world of Harry Potter fans has been understandably ruffled by the likely fraudulent claims of "Gabriel" to have hacked the final novel...

I agree completely with the denunciations of this attention-seeking loser - see, for example, Dan Flanagan's fine piece in - but I also see this as a left-handed compliment to the extraordinary impact of Harry Potter in our culture.

Not that J. K. Rowling needs any further validation - hundreds of millions of books sold, worldwide, soundly refuting the notion that movies and television have sapped us our our literacy, our taste for captivating reading - but I do find it significant, and even a good thing, that spoilers are afflicting novels in this day and age.

The spectre of spoilers, after all, has haunted television and movies for quite some time. Hit series such as 24 have even been rumored to change their story lines to defeat the deflating impact of spoilers.

It's oddly nice to see spoilers yapping at the heels of novels now, too.

It's no doubt way too late for Rowling to change anything in the final Harry novel, so I propose (a) continuing to keep the goods as secret as possible, (b) vigorously checking out any claims to spoilers that may appear (as has been done with Gabriel), and (c) - most of all - basking in the sunlight that being targeted for spoilers bestows upon the magnificent series...

Useful links:

Harry Potter and the Refutation of Illiteracy

Harry Potter and iPhone

Harry Potter and the 3-D Phoenix movie review

Did Spoilers for 24 Lead Producers to Change the Finale?
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