Journal news editor Kavahn Mansouri takes on copy editor Hailey Kaufman on the topic of…
Kavahn Mansouri vs. The World: One series to rule them all
There is nothing more obnoxious than Harry Potter fans, and I say that knowing full well what the Webster University Quidditch team is capable of.
It’s not that I dislike Harry Potter, it’s that Megan Favignano has put the great J.R.R. Tolkien in the same ring as J.K. what’s-her-face, and I for one will not stand for it.
The fact of the matter is that the Lord of the Rings trilogy stands alone when it comes to fantasy tales. It is the most important piece of fantasy fiction of all time, and to even compare it to a pesky pre-teen wizard tale is an insult. To put a writer who has invented languages from pure imagination into the same category as someone who wrote eight books based off a nightmare is ludicrous. People like to think that Harry Potter is some sort of important piece of literature; simply put, they’re wrong.
Just to start off, let’s compare Gandalf to Dumbledore. Oh wait, there is no comparison because Gandalf the Grey/White is possibly the greatest mentor character there is. Honestly, you can’t even compare Dumbledore to Gandalf after the confrontation of the Balrog (the ultimate sacrifice and a 10 day battle to the death). I’m pretty sure Dumbledore’s “sacrifice” doesn’t come close to that and the several other sacrifices Gandalf makes for the fellowship. Am I wrong? Gandalf 1 – 0. In the wizard show down, there is no competition.
Then we’ve got the kid with the scar on his face, who can use magic and whose parents died. Boohoo. The real deal: Frodo. No special powers without consequence, he’s a hobbit being chased 100 percent of the time by Sauron’s army and is constantly being led into danger by a hobbit who went mad because of the thing he’s supposed to destroy. Oh, poor Harry, he has to worry about Snape failing on his blah blah blah, who cares. His parents died before he could think, and he’s on the struggle bus for eight years of what is basically middle school.
How many books did Rowling need to tell such a drawn-out story? Tolkien invented several languages and an entire realm in four books. The best Rowling could do was dream up some pre-teen magic college where the conflict comes up once a book for three chapters. Tolkien took three books, five if you count “The Hobbit,” and “Silmarillion” to create a story that has survived the test of time. I’ll be surprised if we’re still hearing about Harry Potter in a decade.
It makes me laugh that Favignano really believes the magic books are even close to the ring trilogy. Rowling’s chapters drag on and never accomplish anything. I could barely get past “The Goblet of Fire,” and the conflict is the equivalent of middle school cheerleaders arguing. I feel like I’m wasting my time even considering these childish books to be compared against The Lord of the Rings.
If you want to talk about the movies, check out how many Academy Awards all eight Harry Potter movies have earned. None. Three Lord of the Rings films won 17 out of 30 Academy Award nominations. If you think earning more money makes for a better movie, go watch the Twilight series.
The fact of the matter is that Harry Potter is a passing fad, but Lord of The Rings will stand the test of time. Our generation will grow up and, like most books for teenagers, Harry Potter will be lost in time. But Tolkien’s work will stand the test of time. There is no question; Frodo beats Harry, Gandalf beats Dumbledore, Sauron beats Voldemort and Tolkien destroys Rowling.
There can only be one, there will always be one. One series to rule them all.