Arianne and I are so excited to bring you this new feature! One Window, Two Views will be a weekly meme where we will discuss a topic from each of our points of view. Please join the discussion!
Arianne: When the article where JK Rowling admitted she regretted letting Ron and Hermione end up together first appeared, I thought it was going to break the internet! I believe her comments were: “For reasons that have very little to do with literature and far more to do with me clinging to the plot as I first imagined it, Hermione ended up with Ron. I can hear the rage and fury it might cause some fans, but if I’m absolutely honest, distance has given me perspective”.
It's not outright saying the relationship didn't work, but an author even admitting she had doubts about 'big romance' of her most famous series is kind of a big deal! The Romione relationship is really important to a lot of fans - but (please don't maim me for what I'm about to say next!) I've always been a Harry/Hermione supporter, and when I read the article I was secretly thrilled. It was like being told "You were right, there was something there between them all along!" What about you, Liza?
Liza: That is so funny! I’m not at all surprised by Rowling’s statement. I’m not an author, but if I may insert a comparison here, when I bake a recipe for the first time I make notes: more sugar the next time, more vanilla, maybe adding more chocolate chips or replacing the pecans for almonds. Similarly, any artist often judges and criticizes her/his own work; it must be difficult indeed. Like you, I could easily imagine Harry and Hermione together, but I have to admit that by ‘The Goblet of Fire’ when Hermione started showing interest in Ron, the idea kind of grew on me.
Arianne: That's a good point, actually - when you read what Rowling said, you have to step back and think, "Hold on, was anyone really surprised by this?" I can totally understand why as a writer she felt she needed more control over her work. Remember, by the time the third and fourth books were published, the movies were already a huge success. Imagine how hard it must have been to see the books stripped back and streamlined so that only the bare bones were left intact. Of course the central story was still there, but it must have been like looking up a big, old tree and wondering which branch would be chopped off next! By going ahead with the Ron/Hermione romance no matter what was happening on the screen, JK Rowling made the relationship part of the tree's trunk, the very heart of the series, so no one could possibly dream of taking it away. I think a lot of people can empathize with her decision, no matter which relationship you support at the end of the day.
Liza: Maybe part of the problem for me, was that throughout the series we get to know and love this magical trio of friends. Since the ‘idea’ of Ron/Hermione is introduced early on, we, as readers got used to it and didn’t question it further. Sadly, that is not the case with Ginny Wesley. It may be, not that we can’t imagine Ron and Hermione together, but that I never saw any chemistry between Ginny and Harry. Furthermore, Harry and Hermione always behaved like siblings, and the bond of love between them was palpable, I can easily imagine that bond growing into something more.
Arianne: I'm in total agreement with you there. I may not have wanted them to end up together romantically, but Ron and Hermione have a very funny, tense, dynamic relationship - it's interesting. The same can't really be said for Harry and Ginny. I think that's why I started thinking about Harry and Hermione possibly falling for each other - because even if their romance wasn't happening on the page, the excitement of what could have been was way more believable and intriguing than Harry and Ginny were!
The one scene that really made me believe it though was when Harry and Hermione dance together while Ron's gone in Deathly Hallows. It's so different in the movie than in the book - tender and sweet and, like you said, really indicative of the bond they share, and maybe indicative of that bond changing, too. I was totally floored by it.
Liza: You’re right! That was a splendid scene, an indication that even though they were in the middle of nowhere, missing their loved ones, at a loss of what path to follow next; they could find solace in each other. I also always felt that Hermione was such an indispensable part of helping Harry defeat Voldemort. I can’t even imagine where they would have been without her unwavering faith in Harry, her extraordinary intelligence, her quick wit and quicker thinking. I think, more than the rest, Harry knew this, he accepted it and appreciated Hermione above everyone else.
Arianne: Harry wouldn't have made it past the first book without Hermione! We're talking as if Hermione needs a man beside her to survive, but she's a fantastic character all by herself - my favourite by far! I think she and Harry could have had a wonderful relationship, full of respect, reassurance and the bond we so love to see between them - but her relationship with Ron shows that no matter how many differences there are between you, love is love and who are we to say it wouldn't have worked out?
When it comes down to it, I'd like to be able to say a supporter of Harry/Hermione in the movies and Ron/Hermione in the books - but I support the friendship between the three of them most of all.
What do you think? Did it ever crossed your mind that Harry and Hermione might have been a couple? How do you feel about J.K. Rowling's comments? Were you surprised at all?
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