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    Harry Potter
    Facing this stuff in real life... is not like school. In school, if you make a mistake, you can just try again tomorrow, but out there... when you're a second away from being murdered, or watching a friend die right before your eyes... you don't know what that's like.
    Type: Legendary Wizard
    Age: 11-17
    Species: Human
    Portrayed by: Daniel Radcliffe
    Status: Alive
    Media of origin: Harry Potter

    Harry James Potter is the main protagonist of the series of the same name. The majority of the books' plot covers seven years in the life of the orphan Harry, who, on his eleventh birthday, learns he is a wizard. Thus, he attends Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to practise magic under the guidance of the kindly headmaster Albus Dumbledore and other school professors along with his best friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger. Harry also discovers that he is already famous throughout the novel's magical community, and that his fate is tied with that of Lord Voldemort – the internationally feared Dark Wizard and murderer of his parents, Lily and James. The book and film series revolve around Harry's struggle to adapt to the wizarding world and defeat Voldemort.

    Harry is regarded as a fictional icon and has been described by many critics, readers, and audiences as one of the greatest literary and film characters of all time. He is portrayed by Daniel Radcliffe in all eight Harry Potter films from Philosopher's Stone (2001) to Deathly Hallows – Part 2 (2011).


    Concept and creation According to Rowling, the idea for both the Harry Potter books and its eponymous character came while waiting for a delayed train from Manchester, England to London in 1990. She stated that the idea of "this scrawny, black-haired, bespectacled boy who didn't know he was a wizard became more and more real to me". While developing the ideas for her book, she also decided to make Harry an orphan who attended a boarding school called Hogwarts. She explained in a 1999 interview with The Guardian: "Harry had to be an orphan—so that he's a free agent, with no fear of letting down his parents, disappointing them ... Hogwarts has to be a boarding school—half the important stuff happens at night! Then there's the security. Having a child of my own reinforces my belief that children above all want security, and that's what Hogwarts offers Harry."

    Her own mother's death on 30 December 1990 inspired Rowling to write Harry as a boy longing for his dead parents, his anguish becoming "much deeper, much more real" than in earlier drafts because she related to it herself. In a 2000 interview with The Guardian, Rowling also established that the character of Wart in T. H. White's novel The Once and Future King is "Harry's spiritual ancestor". Finally, she established Harry's birth date as 31 July, the same as her own. However, she maintained that Harry was not directly based on any real-life person: "he came just out of a part of me".

    Rowling has also maintained that Harry is a suitable real-life role model for children. "The advantage of a fictional hero or heroine is that you can know them better than you can know a living hero, many of whom you would never meet ... if people like Harry and identify with him, I am pleased, because I think he is very likable."

    Why He is the Chosen One

    1. He is one of the most iconic heroes in not only literature, but also in all of fiction.
    2. He is very brave, quick witted, benevolent, respectful, kind, humble, and loyal.
    3. Harry does anything for those who love, including risking his own life.
    4. He always defended the honor of his family, his friends, and Dumbledore.
    5. He is compassionate and forgives others, regardless of how heinous their acts were.
      • He made amends with Dudley and Draco; regardless of how awful they treated him, especially Draco.
      • He saved Wormtail from being killed by Sirius and Lupin, and opted to hand him over the dementors instead. (Although this backfired immensely)
      • He once admits to Voldemort that he feels sorry for him for not knowing the true meaning of love and friendship.
      • Despite the many revealing details he learned about Dumbledore's life in the 7th book, Harry ultimately got over it when he understood that Dumbledore did changed for the better over time.
      • And finally and especially, Harry ultimately forgave Snape after learning his story and decided to honor his memory; to the point where he named his son after him and had his portrait be installed in the headmaster's office.
    6. He understood and believed in the power of love.
    7. His friendship with Ron and Hermione is one of the strongest bonds in the series.
    8. He is shown to be a highly efficient leader and teacher, like when he establishes Dumbledore's army and how he taught the other students how to fend for themselves.
    9. He has done many wholesome and respectful things for the people he loves:
      • He gave the Weasley twins his winnings of the tournament so that they can start their magical joke items shop.
      • He and Hermione saved Buckbeak from being executed and handed over to Sirius, who then took care of him.
      • One of his best moments in the franchise was when he started Dumbledore's Army and taught his peers how to defend themselves from the dark forces and use magic wisely; not only to go against the Ministry and Umbridge's regime, but because he really cared for them and wanted to prepare everyone for the upcoming war.
      • Even though he didn't had to, he also saved Fleur's sister along with Ron from the lake in the 2nd tournament task and even considered saving all of the hostages; this ultimately earned him the first place for showing moral values.
      • He stood up against prejudiced people: Like those who called Hermione a mudblood, and the people who discriminated Hagrid for being a semi-giant (like Rita Skeeter, Fudge, and Umbridge).
      • Speaking of Hagrid, his friendship with him is one of the most heartwarming parts of the series. They both cared so much for each other.
      • Despite being aware of her quirky personality, Harry had a cute friendship with Luna and considered her a pretty cool girl.
      • He didn't told Ron about his crush on Ginny at first, because he is his best friend and Harry wanted to respect his boundaries.
      • Harry also (temporarily) ended his relationship with Ginny to protect her from Voldemort.
      • The many things he did for Dobby:
        • He set him free from the Malfoys.
        • Bought him several clothes after Dobby provided him gillyweed for the second tournament task.
        • He gave him a proper respectful burial after Dobby rescued him and his friends from Malfoy manor.
      • Despite of the danger, he took Ron and Hermione along with him on his quest to destroy Voldemort's horcruxes.
    10. Despite his initial insecurities, Harry has proven to be very fearless; leading to his many heroic feats, even without magic:
      • He stopped Quirrell/Voldemort from stealing the Philosopher's Stone.
      • He killed the basilisk in the chamber of secrets with the sword of Gryffindor.
      • He faced hundreds of dementors, which he chased away with his Patronus.
      • He managed to overcome the three tasks of the Triwizard Tournament: Facing a dragon, rescue his friend from the creatures of the lake, and avoiding the obstacles of a magical maze.
      • Along with his friends, fought against the Death Eaters at the Ministry of Magic.
      • He faced Voldemort on more than one occasion, against all odds.
      • He managed to destroy Voldemort's horcruxes and finally defeated him.
    11. Although one of the biggest criticisms against his character is over the idea that he is a Gary Stu: Harry is actually an ironic twist on the trope. Despite his privileged background and the story being on his side, he is still a flawed individual who learns many lessons along the way, and ultimately doesn't lets his background define him and chooses to be his own person.
      • While he is famous, he doesn't enjoy it. In fact, it becomes clear that he never wanted fame; especially as that comes from a tragedy.
      • He's a Quidditch prodigy, but is average academically.
      • He's a living legend, but mostly keeps to himself and his two best friends.
      • Girls like him enough, but he's awkward with them.
      • Has tons of money, but doesn't flaunt it or deck himself out in expensive stuff. In fact, he shares it with his friends.
      • When someone starts going on about his greatness he tends to downplay it and say he'd gladly swap it for a normal life.
    12. Daniel Radcliffe did a fantastic performance portraying this character.
    13. His arc and development throughout the series teaches the value of resilience, and how important it is in life: Despite the many tragedies Harry goes through (Losing his parents, his godfather, his mentor, being vilified by authorities, and watching others die for him), Harry doesn't let any of that drag him down and always keeps moving forward, no matter what.
    14. Regardless of the obstacles, Harry refuses to give up.

    Bad Qualities

    1. He can be stubborn and impulsive.
    2. He can lose his temper on several occasions.
    3. Sometimes he can be very proud and arrogant.

    Reception and Popularity

    In 2002, Harry Potter was voted No. 85 among the "100 Best Fictional Characters" by Book magazine and also voted the 35th "Worst Briton" in Channel 4's "100 Worst Britons We Love to Hate" programme. Entertainment Weekly ranked Harry Potter number two on its 2010 "100 Greatest Characters of the Last 20 Years" list, saying "Long after we've turned the last page and watched the last end credit, Harry still feels like someone we know. And that's the most magical thing about him." UGO Networks listed Harry as one of their best heroes of all time, who said that "Harry is a hero to the often oppressed and downtrodden young fan boys and girls out there, who finally have an icon that is respected and revered by those who might otherwise look down on robe-wearing and wand waving as dork fodder". Harry Potter was also ranked number thirty-six on Empire's 2008 list of "100 Greatest Movie Characters of All Time". IGN said that Harry Potter was their favourite Harry Potter character, calling him a "sympathetic figure" and saying in response to his fights against Voldemort that "everybody loves an underdog story of good vs. evil".

    On the other hand, he has received criticism. In The Irish Times, Ed Power wrote "Potter, by contrast, is an anointed cherub, told he is special from the very outset. He has no winning attributes yet ... is fawned over endlessly. Harry is thus the ultimate 'Special One' – celebrated as an overachiever before he's achieved anything. ... In Potter, [Rowling] encourages the underage reader to identify with a young man who is exceptional only because the author insists this to be the case. You're extraordinary no matter what. Is that an outlook I want to pass onto my kids?"[37] Author Lannah Marshall criticised the character, saying "What I hear about Harry Potter, more often than not, is that he is a bland character. Defence of this includes that he is an audience surrogate, or what I call a 'puppet protagonist'. A puppet protagonist is a main character with dull, limited personality, enabling the audience to step inside the role and use their imagination to fill in the rest. The prevalence of first-person narration within Young Adult (YA) simply adds to the tide of puppet protagonists; introducing hundreds of bland, forgetful leads into interesting and complex stories to allow the reader to feel part of the tale. It's like we’re going back to the second-person horrors of choose-your-own-adventure books."

    Despite blowback from some Christian fundamentalists critical of Rowling's usage of witchcraft and magic in the series, other Christian critics, including Rev. John Killinger, have argued that Potter is a Christ figure in the series. Killinger opined in 2002 that "J.K. Rowling has written the Christ story of the 21st century, and it's wonderful that she has attained such a magnificent following worldwide." He noted several allusions to Jesus in Potter's character arcs in Philosopher's Stone and Chamber of Secrets. Rowling herself later admitted that the Gospel story inspired that of Harry Potter, especially with his ultimate sacrifice in Deathly Hallows and apparent death before returning to defeat Voldemort once and for all.

    According to halloweenonline.com, Harry Potter sets were the fifth-best selling Halloween costume of 2005. In addition, wizard rock bands like Harry and the Potters and others regularly dress up in the style of Harry Potter, sporting painted forehead scars, black wigs, and round bottle top glasses. Wizard rock is a musical movement dating from 2002 that consists of at least 200 bands made up of young musicians, playing songs about Harry Potter. The movement started in Massachusetts with the band Harry and the Potters, who cosplay as Harry during live performances.

    In April 2009, a group of University of Michigan students eventually known as StarKid Productions performed Harry Potter: The Musical, a two-act musical parody that featured major elements from all seven books and an original score. They posted the entire musical on their YouTube channel but removed it in late June, to edit some more mature elements from the videos. The musical, re-titled A Very Potter Musical, was reposted on 5 July 2009, starring Darren Criss as Harry Potter. A sequel was premiered at the 2010 HPEF Harry Potter Conference Infinitus, and released on YouTube on 22 July at 8 pm EST. The sequel was called A Very Potter Sequel and featured the Death Eaters using the Time-Turner to go back in time to Harry's first year in Hogwarts. Harry Potter is spoofed in the Barry Trotter series by American writer Michael Gerber, where a "Barry Trotter" appears as the eponymous antihero. On his homepage, Gerber describes Trotter as an unpleasant character who "drinks too much, eats like a pig, sleeps until noon, and owes everybody money". The author stated "since I really liked Rowling's books ... I felt obligated to try to write a spoof worthy of the originals".


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