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14 October 2006 @ 01:02
PS - Chapter 2 - The Vanishing Glass  
Here is the place for comments on Chapter 2 of Philosopher's Stone.
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wandrin_dreamerpan_alchemist on 21st October 2006 01:57 (UTC)
Harry's dreams and memories
Throughout the books, Harry does seem to have some rather interesting dreams. Although the actual dream of a flying motorbike might not in itself be startling, the fact that it is their in his memory is.

I don't know of anyone who has memories that go back as far as that. This does, however, make it clear (as do the dreams of the flash of green light, and the Dementor-induced memories) that these memories are in Harry. Is it possible that in the future, he might look at them to see what really happened that night?
Ianus Incantatus: janusjanus_incantus on 11th November 2006 21:59 (UTC)
Re: Harry's dreams and memories
Using pensieve? Good point. Actually such a good idea that I'm really surprised Dumbledore didn't try that already.
wandrin_dreamerpan_alchemist on 21st October 2006 02:09 (UTC)
Speculation
...and find the house in ruins?"

I am probably pulling at straws here, but this isn't the only reference to the house being destroyed by Harry. I am wondering if Dumbledore mentioned something about the house in Godric's Hollow being destroyed in his letter to the Dursleys.
wandrin_dreamerpan_alchemist on 21st October 2006 02:26 (UTC)
Tinfoil Hat theories
Here are two theories that I have read before that stem from this chapter. I am going to mention them, just in case anyone thinks that there is something to them.

1) Harry is a metamorphmagus.
This theory comes from the fact that Harry could change the length of his hair after Petunia hacked it off.

Personally, I am not convinced.

2) Nagini is the Boa Constrictor Harry released from the zoo.
Although it would be a very interesting twist, there is no proof. We do not know what type of snake Nagini is.
Ianus Incantatusjanus_incantus on 11th November 2006 21:53 (UTC)
Re: Tinfoil Hat theories
1) I'm not convinced either. Harry didn't control himself the changing of his appearance here. And besides, didn't JKR rebuff this theory already?

2) Would be funny. But I think Harry would have noticed. And nagini seems to be a venomous snake rather than a starngler (it bite Arthur).
wandrin_dreamerpan_alchemist on 21st October 2006 03:11 (UTC)
General
I don't think there was much to find in this chapter. I think this chapter basically served to introduce us to Harry and the situation he was in.

As much as it pains me to say this, I suppose the Dursley's have served one very valuable purpose for Harry. He has grown up looking after himself, being on the defensive, and contantly having to be responsible for his own survival. If he had grown up in a normal home, as opposed to an abusive one, he would not have been as self-suffient; his expectations in life would have been different. In a very sick way, I suppose the Dursleys have at least helped Harry and is destiny by giving him a rough childhood. If he had been pampered, he would not have been as prepared and capable as he is.

Other than that, we get to see how spoilt Dudders is, and we learn that Harry is generally a nice guy. This chapter builds your sympathies for Harry and basically sets the foundations for him eventually leaving the Muggle world to join his own kind.

Ianus Incantatusjanus_incantus on 11th November 2006 21:45 (UTC)
Re: General
The chapter mentions in passing surprisingly many things of which we'll find out more later (see my fauna comments).

On Dursleys, I have something more to say with chapter 3, but well, at least they did give him some sort of home.

Good point about building sympathies for Harry - this also lies all the basic foundations for the 'Harry Filter'.
Ianus Incantatusjanus_incantus on 11th November 2006 21:34 (UTC)
Fauna
Interestingly, the second chapter introduces many non-magical animals that later turn out somewhat significant.

1) Right in the beginning, Harry is referred as slug (the way Dursleys are talking about him in his presence). Later a sea slug (whack) is mentioned to cause Aunt Marge's illness. In later books, we find Ron coughing slugs and of course Professor Slughorn.

2) There are spiders in Harry's cupboard. Spiders are very important in CoS, and later the Arachnomatulae make a comeback in HBP. We also have spiders in Dumbledore's hair in the beginning of HBP.

3) Snakes - I don't really need to elaborate this, do I?

In a way, this chapter introduces some of the less pleasant concepts, including animals, whereas the nicer muggle animals, cats and owls, were already present in the first chapter. I'm don't know if there is anything more to this, but I find it intriguing that so many things are laid out already in the beginning of the series.
Ianus Incantatusjanus_incantus on 11th November 2006 21:42 (UTC)
Mrs Figg's Suspicious Injury
How convenient for JKR that Mrs Figg broke her leg just now... Well, seriously, I'll come back to this with the 3rd chapter comments.