Tuesday, July 26, 2011

It's A Kind of Magic

Fictional magic has been bothering me for some time now, more accurately; the lack of imagination of fictional magic writers.

This has all started with Harry Potter. Some things have bothered me about Harry Potter... my issue here is not with the films (I have a full separate bag of issues with the films...) but with the way magic is constructed in the originals. Why do we have to create magic within these books but always give it these lame limitations so that things are still shit?

"Yer a wizard 'arry!"
"Brilliant, can I cure cancer?"
"Er... well, this is awkward. No. But, Dumbledore's got this cracking mirror where you can see all the dead folk you couldn't save?"
"Yeah, and you can hang it without any nails! Magically! On the wall!"
"Erm, humans have that too... It's called, No More Nails."
"Oh. Awkward."

Why are the Weasley's poor? They're magic!

"We don't have much wizard gold..." (Incidentally, I do not see why putting the word 'wizard' in front of anything makes it special. Poor is poor whether you're collecting wizard dole or standard...)
"Why don't you just magic some wizard gold then?"
"Or better yet, why do you even need gold? Just magic the shit you want?"
"Oh yeah... we didn't think of that."
"While you're at it, hair dye can be bought from muggle shops to sort out your family's bullying problem - you don't even need magic for that..."

How can you even end up poor when you're magic? What's the exchange rate like on Sterling to WG (Wizard Gold) - surely you should be able to hold down about 9 muggle jobs and be raking it in? The only excuse for being wizard poor is wizard laziness in my wizard book.

It's the same in all magical books... it's like the author freaks out at the concept of being able to make magic really good in case people flip out reading it that they want magic so badly. Maybe it's just too hard to construct a story in a human brain when all the normal boundaries of our existence have been removed? If I wrote a magic book it would be about 2 pages long and go something like this:

Wizard 1: Oh, hello. What did you wizard do today?
Wizard 2: I had a wizard wank and some wizard lunch. It was tremendous. I feel no need to wizard do anything else today because I am a wizard.
Wizard 1: Isn't being a wizard so easy?
Wizard 2: Yes, because magic is magical.
Wizard 1: You're not wizard wrong.

And that would be the end of the book. Because there are no problems if you're magic.

Also, when people write magical books where wizards co-exist with non-wizards. Where the hell did the wizards mooch off to when we were really struggling with stuff?

Were wizards just tired around Ethiopia in the 80s?
Are we suggesting that actually the wizards were fully in support of the Third Reich or that they just take an American approach to intervening?
Please don't insinuate that a wizard with an afternoon off and a 6 3/4 inch willow wand couldn't do more for heart disease than my £2 a month because I frankly won't believe you.

That's the bloody reason wizards need to keep their identity a secret - because they're selfish ass holes who prefer using their cosmic power to do menial tasks like potato peeling. They'd have a queue of normal people outside the door asking why it's still possible to lock your car keys in the car when people with the capacity to bend the laws of physics and nature are wandering around everywhere.

Let's just pop back in time and fix all these instances where magic could have been used to just make the whole story simpler and much more mighty magic...

Lord of The Rings - either use Gandalf like a steroid pump and give the mincy little Hobbits a fighting chance, or, I don't know... train the damn birds that turn up at the end to just do the outward bound journey as well?

Harry Potter - pop Harry's cherry using a wizard hooker in the first book so that even if the next 6 are still full of ridiculous uses of magic, it won't have a backdrop of anxiety and wizard moping.

Sabrina The Teenage Witch - don't mend what's not broken.

The lack of faith in the wizarding community is so bad that these are all entries in the list of the top ten wizards of all time according to www.time.com:

1. Albus Dumbledore - he dies. He is such a great wizard that he dies. He just dies. This, by my reckoning, instantly makes Voldemort a much better wizard. He can be number one in the "Most moral knobheads" list of all time or "Guys who went down trying to teach a valuable lesson to an orphan" but he is clearly not that great a wizard. Unless, he's cottoned on to the fact that in the world of Harry Potter you can never really die as long as someone's previously done a fairly accurate oil painting of you. Are you trying to tell me someone painted a fat lady to go on a door but no one thought to just sketch out the whiskery old fool in case he got snuffed out on some drugs binge with Dobby? Ridiculous.

4. Mickey Mouse. He is a mouse. He is also only ever really a wizard once. And in his time as a wizard he makes an enormous mess whilst trying to wash a floor. He is, therefore, such a poor wizard that his life would have been immensely more straightforward had he not even had magic. And he is at number 4. What are we learning here?

8. The Pinball Wizard... ie - from The Who song. I'm not making this up... people must have literally just started Googling the word wizard at this point in a desperate attempt to know more than Merlin, Gandalf and Mr Majeika. This could only be an impressive entry if number 9 was the band Wizzard and we discovered that this was in actual fact just a run down of words that will score you a lot on Scrabble.

Brilliant. In all our collective consciousness... we've dreamed up the concept of magic and this is all we've managed to do with it? Create a fairly implausible opportunity for a severely disabled man to shine in pub based games and applaud a mouse in a frock who can't mop a floor? You're letting yourselves down humans... makes me see the Bible in a whole new light...

No comments:

Post a Comment