J K Rowling Regrets Ron And Hermione: My Thoughts

Ron and Hermione. RON AND HERMIONE. I love them so much. They had such an interesting and difficult relationship.

They went from this:

To this:

And then to this:

GLORIOUS, isn’t it? I’ve had LOTS of discussions about what J K Rowling purportedly said (I mean, I’m still waiting for the entire world to go LOL JKS, but let’s assume it’s true for now).

I’ve had discussions about whether books belong to their readers.

I’ve had discussions about why Harry and Hermione would be a terrible idea.

I’ve had discussions about whether there should have been romantic love in the books at all.

I’ve watched as Twitter and Tumblr blow up, and I’ve seen arguments about every possible facet of the Harry Potter fandom. Geez. J K Rowling is one verrrry influential lady.

So here are my thoughts.

I think J K Rowling can say whatever she wants about her books – she wrote them, she spent years thinking them through. But that doesn’t change the books. She can say what happens beyond the books – that’s her interpretation, but any other interpretations outside of the published works is just as correct. Like, when she says Dumbledore’s gay? It’s hard to infer that from the text. When she says Luna and Rolf Scamander end up together? Doesn’t happen in the books, so we can think whatever we want about that.

Here’s the thing: we are just as important to her as she is to us. Without us, there’d be no Harry Potter. The books belong to us just as much as they belong to her now, and regardless of whether she regrets putting Ron and Hermione together, the fact remains that they will always stay together, because that’s what’s in the text. If J K Rowling says something about the books that isn’t in the text, people are obviously going to take notice of her – and that’s what I have a problem with. I have a problem with the fact that our privilege as readers, i.e having liberty to think whatever we want outside the text, is not absolute.

Then there’s the other facet of Harry and Hermione.

This was one of my favourite scenes in the movies. But not because of the romance that many people have said is evident there. It’s because Harry and Hermione’s relationship is complex, and beautiful, and platonic – we don’t get many of those kinds of relationships, and I love it to pieces. When J K Rowling says things like she wished she had put Hermione and Harry together, like it or not, it changes the reading experience for me. Especially since having the main guy and main girl together would be such a cliche.

Then there’s the fact that there are even romantic relationships at all. I started reading these books in year two. I wasn’t concerned about who ended up with whom. I wanted to know if Snape was evil, goddammit!

(okay, this GIF doesn’t really relate, but I like it, okay?)

What I’m trying to say is that I don’t think the series needed the 19 Years Later. I don’t like that everything was tied up in a neat little bow – I like a bit of ambiguity, and Harry Potter ends on a note that doesn’t allow much room for imagination. And despite that, even J K Rowling has misgivings about the ending. There’s an obsession in Western society with romantic love, and J K Rowling does all the other types of love brilliantly – familial love, love between friends, naive love, love between headmaster and student, complicated love…the list goes on. J K Rowling’s comment on the romantic relationship of all things signifies that she places a lot of importance on that – which I don’t think is what Harry Potter is about at all.

Having said all that, I’m often wrong. What do you think? Should J K Rowling have left things the way they were, or do you support her right to say whatever she wants about the books?

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20 thoughts on “J K Rowling Regrets Ron And Hermione: My Thoughts

  1. I guess I can’t really have an opinion on the subject, because I’ve only read 3 of them (though I do want to finish them! Just…time! Argh!) But I think this is a super interesting controversy…and I’m going to stick my neck and and agree with JK Rowling. I’m a writer. I know how it feels to “get it wrong” (like, heck, I’m not published, but I already desperately want to change stuff I’ve given to my agent). I often want to TAKE BACK EVERYTHING I ever wrote and just…eh. Change it. So I get what JK Rowling’s feeling. If I were here, though, I wouldn’t have gone out and said it. I feel like books belong to their authors, even when they give them to us…we didn’t invent them. *shrugs* But I can’t really have an opinion not being a Harry Pottite myself (what do you call Harry Potter fans? I like Pott-ite, myself.) XD

    • Reading them is a big commitment šŸ™‚ doesn’t stop my annual reading, for some reason. You’d think I would have had enough by now, but apparently not.

      On some level, I agree with you. After all, J K Rowling put a world of time into those books. I just don’t think that voicing her regrets is doing anything for the Potterheads (that’s our name, like potheads…lol). In some ways I feel sorry for her – everything she ever says is going to be twisted and blown out of proportion. Who knows if this was even in the right context? We won’t know for sure until the complete interview is released.

      Thanks for your very thoughtful comment šŸ™‚

  2. This was a great post, you outlined your views and supported them amazingly! (: I agree with you, I do see Harry and Hermione as a more brother/sister relationship. I think as the author of the books, J.K. Rowling does have a right to talk about what she’d change and how she views the books. However as the books are published, I feel like whatever happened in the books happened. You can’t really discount Ron and Hermione’s relationship as it’s in the books and it won’t really be changing. Overall I think we’re all entitled to our own opinions and we can share them :] That doesn’t change what’s canon and what isn’t though.

    Again, fantastic post šŸ˜€

    • I think you hit the nail on the head there – everyone’s able to have opinions. After all, imagine the world without fan-fiction! But as the creator of the series, J K Rowling has a HUGE influence on what the Harry Potter community thinks.

      No matter what happens, Ron and Hermione will stay together in the canon, and that’s what I keep in mind in the end šŸ™‚

  3. I think she has the right to say whatever she wants, but she should at least think it through. Commenting about Ron and Hermione might ruin the story for new readers, who have yet to read and feel the chemistry between the characters. They would automatically jump on the Harry and Hermione bandwagon and view Ron as the third party. The whole trio concept would be shaken… and the adventure would not be the same for them as it was for us. That’s just sad.

    • I completely agree. As a writer she’s perfectly able to have regrets about her creative work. But she should realise that anything she says is going to be blown out of proportion and change the reading experience.

  4. This is such a great post – thank you so much! I completely agree with everything you said. And I love love love the gif šŸ™‚

  5. She can say what she likes, I think, but she’s never going to ruin Ron and Hermione’s Perfect Love, at least not for me. I really like the way you’ve been cautious in your post – making it very clear that what JKR actually *said* may not be what everyone *thinks* she did – but my heart will always belong to Ron and Hermione. Harry and Hermione makes me actually quake with horror.

    And, I think I’m unique in that I’m a fan of the epilogue. Apologies. *slinks away*

    • Yeah, that was what I was trying to say, basically. I didn’t want to be too ranty either way, because I know both points of view are valid. I look forward to seeing what JKR said in that interview!

      To be honest I think it’s unpopular not to like the epilogue – or at least that was the impression I got. Who knows? Maybe I’m in the majority after all. I mean, as a kid I loved the 19 years later (I did read the last book in fourth grade, after all). But I don’t know. Now I’m becoming old and bitter or something. At 16. Wow, I’m going to be a fun old lady.

      Thanks for stopping by to comment! šŸ™‚

      • šŸ˜€ At 16, I barely knew what day it was, and I turned out all right. You’re going to be just fine. Take it from an old lady, who may or may not be fun. (I’m not fun, really. But don’t tell anyone.)

  6. ZOMG. Yes. Yes, I love that Harry and Hermione have their own complex relationship without the romance. And I love, love, LOVE Ron and Hermione, because even though I’ve never been in a romantic relationship, there was something about them that just made sense to me. It just clicked. And I agree, that for Harry and Hermione to have ended up together… definitely cliche.

    But I can finally disagree with you on the overall end to Harry Potter. I mean, I understand your view, and I think ‘fair enough’, too. In my opinion, however, I feel like that ending was something that was… earned, if that makes sense. Like you said, the series goes into a whole range of different kinds of loves, and the journey as a whole is so much more than that romance. But after all the hardships, the struggles, the deaths, and even the ambiguity, through all 7 books, that neat little end was deserved. I donno how else to explain it. It’s just, for me, that journey was so emotionally draining in so many ways, and they went through so damn much, that if she left it ambiguous, it just wouldn’t be fair. And if it wasn’t something nice – after ALL THEY WENT THROUGH – I would’ve beaten somebody with the Punishment Salmon. And come on, wouldn’t you have liked to known who our favourite trio ended up with? Not because it undermined the other kind of loves, but just because.

    And that is my opinion šŸ™‚ Thanks for this post. I love a Harry Potter related discussion ^_^

    • I love opinions! Luckily we’re having very rational discussions on this blog so far, which is lovely. I totally get why you think that about the ending, as I know a lot of people do. And in a way, I kind of agree – I mean, there kind of had to be a happy ending, right? For me this particular happy ending felt kind of corny, but I get where you’re coming from.

      On an entirely different note, Punishment Salmon? That is awesome!

      In the end, I love the books just the way they are, with all their flaws. Even if J K Rowling has things she’d like to change, we can rest assured that the books will never reflect that opinion.

      Thanks for your very thoughtful comment, it’s much appreciated šŸ™‚

  7. I’m a Harry Potter fan and it’s one of my favorite series. I think it’s the reason why I became in love with reading books. Anyway, I actually don’t care anymore what JKR says about the book or the characters. What I have read in the 7 books will be final and I’m happy with everything that happened. I don’t want to change anything, even the characters that died.

    I don’t understand what this “shipping” is about. I loved the book not because of the romance but the adventure, the magical world, goodness and evilness, and friendship. I think the book will even survive without the romance at all. Don’t get me wrong, I love romance in books but Harry potter series is already awesome without it. So I don’t understand why people are fighting who ends up with who.

    Oh that dancing scene, I remember that when I was watching in cinema. The viewers were all like “awwww” while I just felt that it’s a friendly dance between them.

    Laslty, I already like Snape even before his famous line “always”. Until book 4, he was my favorite book villain.

    • Exactly – Harry Potter is about so much more than romance, and there are so many more things to discuss than just that!

      For example, I will always (haha) dislike Snape. I don’t care how many people love him, he will always be a selfish man to me, and that’s okay! There are so many facets of Harry Potter that difference of opinions is always going to happen.

      Thanks for your comment šŸ™‚

  8. Pingback: What Happened This Week: Irish Accents and Swimming Carnivals | The Loony Teen Writer

  9. To be honest I think JK Rowling is coming out and doing this for a bit of publicity. I think the series was perfect, and reading her comments about it she felt that Ron & Hermione were right at the time. And I still think they are, Harry couldn’t have ended up with Hermione because the whole dynamic would have been different in the novel and it would have been a love story instead of a story about his bravery.

    • Yeah, I think that’s part of it as well. I just don’t see why she would think that about her work when nothing in the books would be the same – I mean, surely she thought extensively on this while she wrote it? She was setting up the relationship between Ron and Hermione from the third book, and probably thinking about it long before that. It makes no sense to me at all!

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