Every year in the winter, multiple television channels host a Harry Potter Movie Marathon. Even if you don’t watch them on live TV, you probably watch them on the discs or, you most likely know someone who does.
In the spirit of the season of Harry Potter, I decided to interview some avid Harry Potter fans to find out why they like Harry Potter, and why it is such a prominent winter tradition for so many people.
I interviewed 4 different people that I knew to be huge fans of Harry Potter. Their names are Kaitlyn Woodbrey, Abigail Fuhriman, Sophie Gilmore and Sarah Bishop.
The reasons for why each likes Harry Potter is mainly because they always have liked it. Kaitlyn, Sophie and Abigail all watched it growing up, and Sarah loves the world of fantasy.
“I love the Magical World, and the Dark Academia Style.” – Abigail Fuhriman
When asked why they liked it more than other series, they all agreed that the world-building had a lot to do with it. The ability to insert yourself into the book by having relatable characters as well as being able to find out your House, Patronus and much more on Pottermore pertaining to the Harry Potter world.
“It’s nice that there are ways that you can somewhat be a part of the world through Pottermore and stuff, and even just watching the movies. And there’s merch available, like the cloaks and such with the Hogwarts houses on it where you can like, have some semblance to being a character in it, which is cool.” – Sarah Bishop
They also had other reasons, Sarah details the different layers to the fandom, such as the Marauders, Golden Gen and Next Gen. Abigail goes into how nice the fandom is, as well as the semblance of growing up that you get with both the movies and the books, as they get darker as they go on. Sophie agrees that you get to grow up with the series, and get to watch the actors grow up, which you don’t get to do with many other series.
Their favorite movies often differ from the books, as some things may not be portrayed as well or certain details get left out. Sarah, for example loves the third book Prisoner of Azkaban, but her favorite movie is the first. Both Sophie and Abigail agree that the sixth movie is the best, and the fourth book tends to shine for them. Kaitlyn chose the last book and the third movie.
When favorite characters come up, Sarah has a bit of a disclaimer:
“I don’t know, most of my favorite characters don’t have that much actual “canon” to them, but Remus Lupin or Sirius Black was a really responsible father figure character, but he also was a huge mess.” – Sarah Bishop
Sophie loves Luna Lovegood, because of her relatability.
“My favorite character is Luna Lovegood, more because she just reminds me of myself a lot, so its fun to see her onscreen and in the books doing things that remind me of myself.” – Sophie Gilmore.
Kaitlyn and Abbey both agree that Hermione is their favorite character, as she brings a lot to the trio (Harry, Ron and Hermione) and it’s cool to see someone who is so smart being represented positively.
Now heading into their experience with the Harry Potter Universe, I asked them what their favorite experience, related to the series was. Sarah’s was being able to visit Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley at Universal Studios, Orlando.
“[It] was really cool because I was able to see it in real life and how I imagined it… I got a wand and got to go on rides and eat themed food.” – Sarah Bishop
She says. She loved the opportunity to almost live like she was in the Harry Potter Universe and enjoyed trying foods and drinks, such as Pumpkin Juice and Butterbeer.
Sophie agrees that Harry Potter World is definitely a memorable experience for her as well. She particularly liked the themed rides and snacks they had to offer.
“My favorite memory is probably watching the movies with my dad growing up.” – Kaitlyn Woodbrey
Abigail’s favorite memories also have to do with other people, although not all of them are her family.
“My favorite memory is when we got to meet Daniel Radcliffe (the Harry Potter actor) in New York and I was able to tell him I read the series 9 times. He said my name and was super nice, I also got to meet Tom Felton (the Draco Malfoy portrayer) and the Phelps Twins. (both Fred and George Weasley)” – Abigail Fuhriman
As for the reason of this interview, many had similar thoughts on why people tend to re-watch or re-read the series in the Winter, as well as why they themselves re-watch and re-read.
“Well almost every movie has a Christmas scene or a snowy scene and it reminds you of Christmas and the winter and makes it seem magical.” – Kaitlyn Woodbrey.
They also mentioned that during the holiday and winter season, many people tend to feel nostalgic and enjoy the familiarity that the series brings. Sophie and Abbey mention that they are nice movies to watch when you want to feel cozy and warm.
The real question though, is have they watched them this winter, or do they even plan to?
Abbey, Kaitlyn and Sarah have all watched them, and plan on watching them again, and even re-reading the series this winter. Many mention that the amount of time they have due to quarantine, and it makes it so much easier to have time to read the books and watch the movies. Sophie has not yet but plans to also re-watch and re-read the series this winter.
As for me? Well, I have re-watched the series and have begun re-reading it. I love the series and it brings me a sense of nostalgia, like many of the interviewees were saying. What about you? Will you cozy up with some hot chocolate and re-watch the series this year? Or maybe even for the first time.