When I was close to my teenage years, back when I was eleven years old, I was a big fan of Harry Potter. I was fascinated by the many creatures and fantasy element in the series setting, by the fact that the main characters were close in age to me, and by the fact that I found Hermione Granger, back then portrayed by a young Emma Watson, extremely attractive (All you 90’s kids know what I am talking about).
But as I grew older, and closer to other works of fantasy, as well as works in the field of science fiction and horror, and as all nerds do, I began to compare them and even put them to scale for in depth comparisons. Eventually I grew further away from Harry Potter and began to feel a certain disdain for it. My disdain has never been enough to completely hate the books, I would still recommend them, and I don’t regret watching the films. But to be honest, the whole setting feels just weak, and after J. K. Rowling’s constant self contradictory revisionism (Hermione is now black even though the books describe her as pale, in case you didn’t get the memo) and her constant explanations over the meaning of different elements (Dementors are depression, Voldemort is magic Hitler, Harry Potter was basically a Jew), now the whole series feels like a big compilation of allegories and allusions held together by a bland yet enjoyable plot.
When you stop and think about it there are few heroes or villains more pathetic than those in the Harry Potter series.
To begin with the whole “wizarding world” is pathetic. Compared to other fantasy settings, in particular set in 1980’s modern Earth, the wizards and sorcerers in Rowling’s setting are scientifically illiterate to the point of shame, they know so little about science that you could easily get rid of them by using a pistol or throwing a grenade in proximity. In fact they are so retarded in regards to science you could get rid of a room full of Death Eaters by dropping a grenade, still locked, and wait for one of them to pull the pin for you in an act of curiosity.
Their spell casting method is simply ridiculous. At least in the whole Western world, all wizards need to speak pseudo Latin and yell “Wingardium leviosaaaaahhhh” properly, making sure to sound as if they were reaching their sexual climax when saying “leviosaaah”. We are never shown exactly what words other regions use, in fact, if they don’t use the very same pseudo Latin in Africa and Asia, probably they don’t need specific words, which means it is all an absurd and all they need is to speak a word to convey an idea, or even cut the middle man and just think the idea and cast the spell, this might produce compulsive transmutation of objects into teacups by the way.
Then we go to the part that spell casting requires an artificial augment. At no point we see any sort of mage casting spells without an artifact, more precisely a wand. Or should I say pointy stick? And the pointy stick has some complex construction. It can’t be just any pointy stick, it has to be from a special wood, with a special part of some life form, and you can’t just grab any, it chooses you. With all those restrictions I find it difficult for any primitive wizard to discover how it worked, let alone start a whole civilization on it.
Now, on their scientific illiteracy, it would make sense if they were completely isolated from the non magical world, as in Narnia. But that is not the case, these babbling fools with pointy sticks have somehow managed to get involved in non magical politics to the point that they have a currency exchange rate, and often non magical families have one or more magical relative, which means somehow they meddle in non magical affairs yet manage to avoid any form of science, including basic medicine.
Their foolishness however extends beyond that. They clearly have the magic to produce artifacts which could replicate modern technology, they could, in theory, make a device that transmitted audiovisual information and use automated transport, yet they prefer to carry their messages, no matter how important or classified, through owls. And of all the magically enhanced transportation methods they could use, they stick to flying brooms, uncomfortable, poorly balanced, lacking of any safety measure, flying brooms. They might be wizards, but they have the wisdom of a potato.
The fantasy creatures that once fascinated me also turned less interesting as I further studied them and found most of them to be either perversions, remixes, or copies of those in other myths and works. To put it in simple terms, the small winged faeries, which in folklore are basically part of the lowest rank of a large caste of species, are nothing but glorified flies (with the intellect of flies) in the so called “wizarding world”. I never liked Rowling’s elves by the way, they looked more like goblins wearing rags. In fact I was probably the only one pleased by Dobby’s death.
To worsen the matter, the whole spellcasting thing feels really shameful. When the most advanced, and illegal, spells are a madness inducing spell, a spell that inflicts pain, a phylactery making spell, and a cheap shot insta kill spell, you can be pretty much sure no one will make fire and brimstone fall from the skies or summon an otherworldly being. In fact there is no summoning of any kind in the series, the closest thing is the Patronus spell, which is just a temporary construct. No powerful wizard in the whole “wizarding world” concocted by Rowling’s sellout hag mind could handle the might of a single cosmic being no matter how puny, they couldn’t even summon one for that matter. There is little to no necromancy, no undead armies, no revival or quick healing spells, in fact I don’t remember the mention of elemental manipulation either, unless you count making an object float as such.
And the main characters are the worst offenders of cognitive dissonance. Harry Potter is nothing but a glorified weak kid. He for most of the part does little to contribute to his goals, he never overcomes a single obstacle alone. Even when he seems to be “alone” there is someone in the background acting to his benefit. The battle against the basilisk? Dumbledore sends Fawkes to save Harry by bringing the Sword of Griffindor, the only time an actual weapon is used in a relevant way. Cedric dies saving Harry. There is not a single instance in which he was not saved by someone else, even his “The Boy who Lived” title is hogwash. He survived because of the deus ex machina of a lingering motherly love spell. Yet still the wimpy fucker gets all the credit, even his opponents in the story point at it! And he has the nerve of going full Shinji Ikari and complaining about the burden that credit taking gets on him. I am pretty much sure I would actually enjoy that undeserved fame if I was in his place, since because of that same undeserved fame he could often violate the rules and get little more than a slap on the wrist for it until the bad guys got in charge.
And going to the bad guys leads me to my second piece of evidence. Voldemort is just magic Hitler minus the political pull. He is not even that much of a powerful wizard or a cosmic menace, think about it, he died at the very beginning of the story and half of it is him connecting to his phylacteries in order to revive. And his death was the most stupid death ever for a dark lord, a pretty much basic death spell, which he already dominated with almost depraved mastery, backfired because he wasted it on a baby. Of all the things he could do to get rid of that baby or neutralize its possible threat he had to go for the most retarded form of overkill. He could burn the house, with the baby inside, or go right to incinerate the baby, he could raise him as his own child and make a perfect acolyte out of him, he could even just slam the baby to the floor and that could be enough to neutralize it by killing him or crippling him. Were I in his place I wouldn’t even bother, I could ask one of my subordinates to do the dirty job, in front of me to make sure I was not crossed of course.
Voldemort’s goals were so simple, world domination and ethnical cleansing. Considering the many villains that share one or both goals with him, his performance is shameful. The fact that he failed to accomplish his goals but still manages to strike fear with his sole memory makes him look like an abject failure. Even the real Hitler got close to accomplish those goals, and it took a combination of infighting, espionage, intrigue, and a rather uncanny alliance of friends and foes to defeat him and his forces and push the man to “suicide” (Let’s face it, he probably escaped to Argentina). Voldemort had more loyal followers, less spies to deal with, and less organized opponents to deal with, and his actions never caught wind beyond the local British sphere, his villainous spree didn’t even take over a nation, he was more of a school shooter or a local white supremacist than an actual Nazi. Voldemort as both a dark lord and as allusion to Hitler is an abject failure.
And even considering how much Voldemort failed as a villain, he still manages to induce deep seated fear in the heart of all wizards, old and young, even those who lived long before him and probably dealt with their fair share of tyrants. His name, or rather names, are forbidden to mention, and naming him shocks people as much as if one yelled “Cock and balls, and also dick!” in a public square if not more. His names shock wizards more than “Allahu Ahkbar!” before someone gets stabbed to death shocks modern day brits (Which tells a lot about how fucked Britain is in that regard). He is not a cosmic horror, he is basically defeated from the beginning, he failed in all his goals, and still people are afraid of naming him as if doing so would break objects around them as in some parodies of his character. People are less afraid of naming Nyarlathotep than of naming Voldemort, even though the mere name of an old god is enough to damage minds and worlds.
To conclude, compared to many other works of fiction, which I do not need to name for the reader to realize I am telling the truth, Harry Potter is a weak setting with weak characters. In order of making my point clear I will however list works of fiction which make any and all “wizards” in Rowling’s work look like weaklings. Magic: The Gathering, Any and all lovecraftian works. The Lord of The Rings, Final Fantasy, Any and all depictions of Dracula, My Little Pony (Both G1 and Friendship is Magic), Any Marvel story (Yes, even FemThor) especially Doctor Strange, Any DC story, Neverwinter Nights, The Witcher, Game of Thrones (Even though I hate George R. R. Martin I must admit he made a better fantasy setting), Slayers, Avatar: The Last Air Bender, Pokemon, Dragon Age, Berserk, Saint Seiya, He Man, Thundercats, Samurai Jack, nearly any fantasy anime, nearly any fantasy comic or video game for that matter.