Just when you thought the Harry Potter mania was dying down (it’s been nearly three years since the release of Deathly Hallows Part 2), J.K Rowling makes a statement that relapses Potter fans into their old habits of discussion, debate, and analysis. Well, I should say our old habits; I’m a huge Potter fan myself. Let’s face it, we were all looking for an excuse to get talking about these characters again, and Rowling has just given us the perfect one. In a recent interview with Emma Watson, Rowling reportedly states that “for reasons that have very little to do with literature and far more to do with me clinging to the plot as I first imagined it, Hermione ended up with Ron.” She carries on to say that Hermione would have been happier with Harry, and that the two of them make a better match than Hermione and Ron, who would have needed “counselling” if they stayed together.
It’s easy to see why many Potter fans have their knickers in a twist over this. The Hermione/Ron relationship is something Rowling has foreshadowed so meticulously throughout her series that anything else seems almost indecent. I’ll admit I’m biased toward the Hermione/Ron pairing, but not simply due to personal preference. I cling to it because it makes sense for the plot, characters, and themes of Rowling’s story. After all, she’d been working toward this ending for seven books. The stitches between these characters are too intricately woven to be snipped away with nail scissors in the final scenes of Deathly Hallows. Here are a few reasons why.
For starters, many fans have pointed out the issue of family. In marrying Ron, Hermione is officially inducted into the huge Weasley family, which makes sense considering she has no family of her own. (Recall that her parents no longer remember her due to the memory-wiping spell she used to keep them safe.) Similarly, orphan Harry is made part of the family through his marriage to Ginny. See what Rowling does there? All three friends are joined by marriage. If Harry had married Hermione they would have made a family of two, completely separate from the Weasleys. Sounds a little sad to me.
Secondly, isn’t Harry Potter about the power of friendship? Hermione and Harry are the best of friends; why ruin that with a half-baked romance? Getting the hero and heroine together is a clichéd plot device we see in nearly every fantasy novel. Fans have commented (and I agree) that the Rons of this world need a break. When you think about it, it’s not even that unrealistic for Ron to get the girl in this case. Hermione needs someone funny and lighthearted to counteract her seriousness, and Ron needs Hermione’s levelheadedness in times of trouble. On the other hand, Harry can be quite morose by nature (and hell, who can blame the guy?). Again, the only word I find to describe a marriage between him and Hermione is just plain sad. They’re too similar. Think about how depressed they were in Hallows after Ron left – and now imagine them like that forever. Whether Rowling meant to or not, she made Ron the glue between those two. Nothing but intense manuscript–no, make that series–surgery could change that.
-Contributed by Raluca Balasa