It’s all happening in the latest instalment in the Harry Potter saga: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. The unfolding events are no more than you’d expect from a grand finale, after all, one would hope the long running series would end with a bang.
As for the main characters, Harry Potter played by Daniel Radcliffe, Ron Weasely as portrayed by Rupert Grint and Hermione Granger realised by Emily Watson, the battles – both internally and externally – never seem to end.
Luckily they have youthful exuberance on their side, but what else drives them?
Since the first film in 2001 it has been made obvious that each character has particular traits which hinder them, or at least they would if faced with them in the real world. But this is fantasy we’re talking about, so let’s take a light hearted look at the minds of the three central figures.
First up is the protagonist, Harry. Harry Potter should be reasonably messed up. Not only did he lose his parents at an extremely young age, but he was then forced to live in an abusive household with a bullying uncle, aunt and irritating cousin, and has been hounded his entire life by a moody spectre hell bent on killing him.
Considering all these things Harry Potter is incredibly well balanced, confident and self-assured. Most people under just one of those circumstances would emerge with emotional scars that could lead to things like anxiety disorder, depression, cardiovascular disease, somatization or chronic fatigue.
All things considered, Harry is something of a super hero – but then we already knew that didn’t we?!
Next is Ron, best friend and serial worrier. Ron Weasely’s issues probably stem from being the “middle” child, and a common issue for second born children (once a third born arrives) is that they become overlooked which leads to conditions such as a sense they do not belong anywhere, low self esteem and lack of self belief, trust issues born of feeling “unloved”, and reclusion which makes them quite insular and unable to open up about their emotions.
Ron certainly displays neuroses associated with Middle Child Syndrome, including paranoia, hyper sensitivity and lack of direction in life. That said, he’s held it together enough times to save Harry and Hermione.
And what of Hermione? Hermione Granger is clearly a workaholic where studies are concerned and is painfully fastidious amongst her peers. She constantly displays symptoms of workaholism which include things like setting standards that are virtually unobtainable, self deprecation as a result of feeling she is never quite good enough, a need to please her peers which masks her ability to see the effect her overworking is having on her health, and she has a strong desire to control situations, often distrusting anyone else’s ability to do things well or right.
Perhaps J. K. Rowling is something of a psychologist. Her blend of characters and their defects creates good tension in the stories but it’s her ability to portray great camaraderie under extremely adverse conditions that makes the Harry Potter story so special.
Are Harry, Ron and Hermione really too messed up to defeat Voldemort and his forces? Tell us what you think by leaving a comment.
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