So I have finished reading “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” and of course have to blog about it, being my ambition to take thoughts from my head and construct them into words.
There are a just a few spoilers ahead
I think I can officially say I have got my Harry Potter groove back again. It has been renewed and re-energized. I thought it would be impossible to get back the magic but I have been proven wrong. This is my trying attempt at a review of the long awaited eighth story in the Harry Potter series. Being a play, it was a little hard to get a feel for the characters, being little more than two dimensional and flat, but what a page turner it was. I read the story, which is little more than a manuscript of dialogue and stage directions, in about three days.
“Cursed Child” is a 308 page script (292 of it story; the rest cast info and production notes) and is divided into two parts of four acts. It is based on an original story written by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne. It is not canon and reads more like fan fiction.
The plot is all about time travel, and rewriting and un-writing history. What else could it be about? In order for the story to be anything worth reading, the old Voldemort plotline (or any similar sinister plot) had to be featured. Voldy may have gone Moldy in book seven, but the concept of Time-Turners makes his return an interesting possibility. At one point, the wizarding world is under control by Voldemort and his legion of followers. Dark days.
Part 1 is more about establishing the storyline and going through lots of talk at the Ministry while Part 2 is where the adventure really takes off, where it’s a trip back to a magically repaired Hogwarts where life goes on as usual as if the Battle in 1997 never happened (it’s about 2019 during Albus’ fourth year).
At times, it feels like all the script manages to do is rehash events from the past and try to paint alternative scenes from them. Maybe it is just serves as another excuse for Potter fans to dish out money.
The main characters:
Scorpius Malfoy – very unlike his father, becomes best friends with Albus Potter and the two are virtually inseparable throughout the play, developing a bromance with awkward hugging:
“Okay. Hello. Um. Have we hugged before?” Scorpius says after a clumsy embrace. “Do we hug?”
He has a weird sense of humor and a slight romantic attraction to Rose Granger-Weasley, Ron and Hermione’s daughter, to little success at wooing her.
Albus Potter – the main protagonist of the story, is afraid of being sorted into Slytherin house, for which he ultimately is. Has some trouble connecting with his father from the beginning. Goes on a time traveling adventure with Scorpius and nearly ends up screwing up the world for good.
Harry Potter – a much older man now working at the Ministry of Magic. He has to grip with raising a family and keeping behind a past that keeps trying to resurface. HIs scar and vivid dreams relating to Voldemort come back into play.
Delphini Diggory – the main villain of the play, tricks Albus into thinking she was a pure goodhearted person when in fact she is the perpetrated daughter of Lord Voldemort (how this is even possible and why anyone – even the vilest of people – would want to mate with him – is a puzzling thought).
The connections between characters is apparent; Albus, like his mother Ginny, is easily fooled and like the namesake of his middle name, is a bit of an outcast; James, like his grandfather, is arrogant and rude to Albus.
I loved this story right from the get go. It had enough twists and turns to keep me interested. Like the main seven books before it, nostalgic feelings came back as I neared the end of the story, feelings of reading a Harry Potter novel for the first time and anticipating what was to happen next. “Cursed Child” is well written and has just enough of that Harry Potter magic to make us all believe again.
Going with a 5 star system, I give the play/book 4/5 stars. The plot could have been a little more original (I felt like I was reading a script for Back to the Future at times)and less hurried, but overall this was an entertaining and heartwarming read. I may still get the play in the crisp hardcover form, because then it would fit along with the beautiful set of seven books I already own.
Watch the video below for a more detailed review: