Web Crush Wednesdays: The Setup Wizard

web crush wednesdaysWhen I was a child, like many of you, I was obsessed with Harry Potter. But unlike many of you, the fanfics I entertained in my mind (though I didn’t yet know they were called that) were not about the canonical characters, but all about an American Muggle-born witch OC who looked up her magical “symptoms” online and ended up finding the “Worldwide Wizarding Web”. Even back then, when I was as young as a first-year, I thought it was ridiculous that the wizarding world hadn’t yet entered the 21st century at all, and I decided to rectify the situation.

Well, imagine my satisfaction when, fifteen years later, Hogwarts finally “hopped aboard the Information Technology train” and hired an IT staff to deal with the Wizarding Web and all the Muggle-borns and half-bloods who refused to give up their smartphones when they went off to school! The Setup Wizard is a fan blog that posts daily updates on these IT adventures at Hogwarts, and oh my gosh, it is so much fun.

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Hogwarts Founders & the Potential for Something a Little More Interesting

Recently I’ve been seeing a lot of clickbait articles discussing how fans want a Hogwarts Founders TV show, particularly because of Redditor Njdevils11’s amazing pitch for a HBO-style TV show for the Founders. And with the success of shows like Game of Thrones and the recent expansion of the Harry Potter universe with things like Pottermore and the upcoming Fantastic Beasts movie, everyone is kind of wondering—well, why not?

Hogwarts housesThere is a part of me that desperately wants this and a part of me that does not. The Harry Potter universe was such a part of my life growing up it was almost like Harry and I grew up together. The last of the books was published in 2007 when I was graduating high school, and the last of the movies came out when I was graduating college. It made for a very visceral feeling of almost going to Hogwarts and being in Harry’s class. As many people can attest, these books were a huge part of my life, and I both long for more content and fear it. Why am I worried? There are two reasons. The first is that I have grown up and become much more aware of the importance of diversity in media. I’m now much more critical of how few people of color played a main role in the books, and I absolutely adore the new headcanons people have created for a Black Hermione and person of color Harry. And seeing that new things like the Fantastic Beasts movie continue to have very little to no diversity is really upsetting to me. Secondly, I have such particular headcanons for how I think the founders, from their personalities to their appearances, should be portrayed (as I’m sure many Potter fans do) that I worry that no matter how good the show is, I’d be ultimately disappointed.

However, that doesn’t mean that a Founders TV show couldn’t be good or make the Harry Potter universe more inclusive and interesting. Don’t get me wrong I would be excited if something like this show were to happen, but I feel like certain things would have to happen to make the show worthwhile.

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Magical Mondays: When Magical Education Is Lacking Part 2

It is no secret that I think Hogwarts is a place that doesn’t care about its students’ safety, and that its environment is morally reprehensible—Hogwarts has slaves, after all. But what about the curriculum? At the very least I should be able to say that Hogwarts provides a kickass education. After all, Hogwarts is the best magic school around, or so we’re told.

It's a castle! It has to be an awesome school if it's also a castle!

It’s a castle! It has to be an awesome school if it’s also a castle!

Well, about that… Hogwarts education is… lacking. Sure, it might be a great place to go to if you want to learn how to do magic, but not so much about anything else.

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Slytherin’s Problem: Hogwarts and the Cardinal Virtues

Hogwarts CrestIf you went to Hogwarts, which House would you be in? Where did Pottermore sort you? Identifying with Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, or Slytherin is one of the most important questions to members of the Harry Potter fandom. The internet loves personality quizzes, and in the early days of internet fandom, the web was full of people trying to write the most “authentic” Sorting Hat quiz. Some used Myers-Briggs personality inventories to sort you. Of course, no one could really agree on whether “iNtuitive Thinkers” made better Slytherins or Ravenclaws, or that all “Sensing Feelers” were either Gryffindors or Hufflepuffs (and don’t get me started on the awful chart that went around). But I’m here to propose a better way of understanding what makes each House tick, and why Slytherin really might have a bad reputation. It’s about the four cardinal virtues.

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Web Crush Wednesdays: Hogwarts is Here

Remember back a year or two ago when everyone was clamoring to join Pottermore and almost every post on every social media outlet was bragging about where they got sorted and asking people to friend them? Remember how great it felt to finally get into this digital Hogwarts, get sorted, get your wand, and finally traverse Diagon Alley in a way Harry Potter fans never thought would be possible? Remember how all of this got really boring after the first day because, after doing all the preliminary assigning, there really wasn’t anything to do except duel and brew potions ad nauseum? I remember, and there’s a pretty good chance a couple of you, dear readers, do too. So maybe Pottermore wasn’t everything we Harry Potter fans were waiting for, but what can I say? We have high expectations. Honestly, probably nothing would have been able to live up to the things we were imagining and had been imagining ever since we came to terms with the fact that we would never be getting our Hogwarts letters. However, all may not be lost.

Pottermore was, at its core, more about the books than the wizarding world it created or even the school it made so popular. Which is fine; expected, even. However, today’s web crush takes a more intensive approach to the Harry Potter universe, especially concerning Hogwarts. Harry Potter fans, hold onto your wands, because I have an important announcement: Hogwarts is here.

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Fanfiction Fridays: No Strings Attached by Out-Of-Control-Authoress

So what I bring you today is a series of epic proportions. No Strings Attached and its sequel, Blood Bound, is a crossover fic between Harry Potter and, no joke, Yu-Gi-Oh. Yes, you read that correctly. You’ll be even more surprised to hear that it doesn’t suck and that it has a unique twist in it to get the characters sent to Hogwarts, unlike all the other Yu-Gi-Oh and Harry Potter crossovers. Or just about anything that’s a Harry Potter crossover, for that matter.

Now, one thing I should mention that bothers me in a lot of crossover stories, and that this story does too, is that many authors don’t realize that there’s a time difference between Harry Potter and other stories. While I’m pretty sure the Yu-Gi-Oh series takes place in the early 2000s, The Philosopher’s Stone begins in the year 1991, meaning that Voldemort kind of dies before the turn of the century. I know that this is just reading into things way too much, but this is the reason that keeps me from reading too many crossovers. I get very particular about the year. I even raged during that one Fanfiction Follies about Ginny getting together with an original female character, because it takes place during her fifth year, which would be 1996, and the characters read Twilight, which came out in 2005.

It just really bugs me to no end.

Thankfully, though, Out-Of-Control-Authoress’s works are done well in enough other areas that I can forgive her story for this slight, especially considering that, as I’ve said, she wrote a Harry Potter/Yu-Gi-Oh crossover that doesn’t suck, which is certainly a near-impossible feat in and of itself.

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Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

1 Deathly Hallows WallpaperWell, the day has finally come. The last of the Harry Potter movies has been made, and with its release in theaters all the hardcore fans can enjoy the epicness of witnessing the conclusion of such a beloved story while simultaneously crying that it’s over.

Harry Potter has been a huge part of my life for years now. I was about twelve when I read the first three books, and now ten years later, sitting in the theater for the final movie, I feel as though my childhood has come to an end with the franchise. Harry Potter is someone I grew up with, so this was also a depressing day for me. I know it sounds sad, but I have to wonder what I’m going to do with my life now that this is over.

Well, there’s always Pottermore and fanfiction.

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