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Thread: James Potter

  1. #31
    cmwinters
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    Are you asking how James *is*, or how Harry *wants him to be*?

    We see very little of James. We see a desire-fueled image of him and Lily smiling benevolently down at Harry in the Mirror of Erised (which has nothing to do with reality — remember the Dark Lord would see himself as all-powerful and immortal), we see a reflection of him during Priori Incantatum, giving his son (who is the only one capable of bringing about an end to the war) dueling advice, we see a couple of memories of him, where arrogant, spoiled and cruel are the nicest things that could be said about him, and we see him once Harry puts on The Ressurrection Stone, where a shadow of him (that is not really him) effectively walks his son to his death.

    Harry thinks the moon and stars of James. Harry thinks James was all that and a box of chocolate. One of my biggest pet peeves is everyone makes such a big deal about Harry being "The Boy Who Lived", but Harry didn't *do* anything (he wasn't capable anyway, being an INFANT). It was LILY that saved him, LILY that provided the protection, and honestly, Harry doesn't really seem to give much of a rat's tail for her.

    Canonically, what we know about James is:
    • He was intelligent (having made Head Boy);
    • he was a pureblood;
    • he was a spoiled, pampered child;
    • he was prejudiced (he hated all Slytherins and all the Dark Arts on principle . . . he didn't have any apparent *reason*, as near as we can tell. Harry at least had *reason*);
    • he was stubborn (he pursued Lily Evans unfailingly for seven years even after she more than made it plain — repeatedly — that she wanted absolutely nothing to do with him — in fact, I think if any other male insisted on going after a young female that way, they'd be brought up on sexual harassment charges);
    • he was a good flyer and an extremely talented Quidditch player;
    • he was nearly inhumanly talented at Transfiguration (becoming an Animagus is nearly impossible to start with, and nevermind as a child with no formal training; human transfiguration instruction doesn't start until sixth year and James had it down pat by fifth);
    • he was quite innovative with regards to creating the Marauder's Map (which probably has heavy Charms emphasis);
    • he was loyal to his immediate circle of friends;
    • he was an absolute bloody MONSTER to those he didn't like;
    • he was cruel and vicious to those weaker and less privileged than himself;
    • and perhaps lastly, he had absolutely zero regard for the rules when the applied to himself (but everyone else should obey them, apparently), making him an incredible hypocrite (based upon his unreasonable dislike of Slytherins and Dark Arts, and his running about the castle at all hours, flagrantly disregarding the rules to run about the Forbidden Forest, and joining the Order in the first place).


    I don't think Harry saw James as *needing* to be redeemed. He was his father, he was the best man that ever lived in Harry's eyes, and that was that. He didn't overlook James' behaviour "a bit"; apart from a few moments in Order of the Phoenix, he overlooked it entirely.

    I don't like James much. Granted, I dislike Sirius Black equally if not more, but I will give Sirius this — he did *TRY* to be a good godfather to Harry in the face of some incredibly difficult odds. Note: I'm not saying that James wasn't or wouldn't have been a good father to Harry; I think Lucius was a good father to Draco. That doesn't mean any of them are good people. And I vehemently disagree that James was "a good person".

  2. #32
    Striped_Candycane
    Guest
    My first reaction to the James Potter’s character is much like cmwinters portrays him as: cruel, arrogant, hypocritical, etc. Being a HUGE Severus/Lily fan, I immediately finished Deathly Hallows thinking: WHY DID J.K ROWLING DO THIS? She basically makes the big-headed, jock-like git win over the uglier, socially inept but intelligent Snape! What kind of message is this sending to all those young minds reading Harry Potter? What is the world coming to?

    And yet. And yet.

    First of all, it is important that every single time we see James in a real-life situation (in other words, not the mirror of Erised or as a ghostly form), it is through Severus Snape’s memories. Would he remember any “kind James” moments? Of course not! James represents everything Severus hates, everything he could never have. Therefore, it is possible that there is a different James that lingers behind the pages.

    Second of all, let us not undermine Lily’s intelligence. She is too smart to let James’s alleged handsomeness lure her into loving someone who was cruel. With this in mind, we could think that Lily at least saw something in James that we reader’s don’t. And I think we can trust her instinct.

    Finally, James does die trying to protect his family. He dies trying to defend his ideals. He, along with Lily, “thrice defied” Lord Voldemort.

    I am not saying he is perfect. I’m not saying he’s a saint. Harry’s view of James is obviously flawed: he wants very badly to believe his father was the best man who ever lived, and James, through his arrogance and cruelty, just does not live up to these standards.

    But I do think, all in all, that James’s heart is in the right place in the end, even if it is hard to see at times. Because, after all, he is neither a devil or an angel: he is only human.

  3. #33
    Fourth Year Gryffindor
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    moonymaniac's Avatar
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    Nice defense of James Striped Candycane.


    I don't like James much.
    ROTFL Really? Gee, CM, the way you held back there, I wouldn’t have been able to guess. *still ROTFL* I have to admit that I do like James. I like him very much, even though I do think he was an arrogant little berk as a teenager, at least through fifth year. Still, I don’t think he was quite as bad even then as you obviously do (though you are fair to point out his better qualities, as well as bad.)

    It was LILY that saved him, LILY that provided the protection, and honestly, Harry doesn't really seem to give much of a rat's tail for her.
    First I’d like to defend Harry here. I think the reason he spends more time focusing on James in the books is that he gets to know James’ best friends and it is only natural to discuss him more with them. Also, Harry is a young man. He is also told repeatedly that he is like his father. I think it makes sense that he seems to consider his father more often. But Harry admitted to himself that he wasn’t doing his best to learn the Patronus Charm because he wanted to hear Lily’s voice. He was willing to suffer the horror of reliving those moments just to hear her voice. *gets all teary-eyed thinking of it*

    And there is this: DH SPOILER (do we still have to do that? ) In the forest with the Resurrection Stone. He could not speak. His eyes feasted on her, and he thought that he would like to stand and look at her forever, and that would be enough. *sob* It was Lily of all of them that he felt this for. /spoiler. I’m convinced Harry had immensely powerful feeling for her all along, we just don’t see him dwelling on it that much.

    he was prejudiced (he hated all Slytherins and all the Dark Arts on principle . . . he didn't have any apparent *reason*, as near as we can tell.
    I think James felt the way Harry did about the Slytherins, because so many of them obviously had links to Lord Voldemort and at the very least, James and his family probably had suspicions about this. His feelings on the Dark Arts would seem to be justified as well. From the definition of them, Dark, I think I would hate them on principle as well. That’s why they don’t teach the Dark Arts at Hogwarts, only DEFENSE AGAINST the Dark Arts. There was something said about Durmstrang teaching the Dark Arts and this was not mentioned as if it were a good thing.

    Also, James grew up during the rise of Voldemort. He would have known that Voldemort and his minions engaged in the Dark Arts and that would be a good reason to grow to hate them, and again the Slytherins, who did apparently comprise the larger part of Voldemort’s followers.


    he pursued Lily Evans unfailingly for seven years even after she more than made it plain — repeatedly — that she wanted absolutely nothing to do with him — in fact, I think if any other male insisted on going after a young female that way, they'd be brought up on sexual harassment charges);
    *DH Spoilers* I don’t think there is evidence that he pursued Lily from first year. He was a jerk to Snape from the start, but he isn’t shown hitting on Lily or showing any interest at all. From the book:

    One of the boys sharing the compartment, who had shown no interest at all in Lily or Snape until that point…

    And he shows no attraction to her throughout the rest of the scene. Then we have no evidence of his attraction to her until “a few years seem to have passed.” They were in fifth year when Snape seemed to realize that James fancied Lily. /spoiler] Also, I don’t think James did anything that would constitute harassment. He asked her out the one time that we saw (and I can’t decide if I think it was the first time he’d done so or not. It was so careless and offhanded that I almost think it was the first time he’d done it, and the way Lily reacted made me think it was new to her. I could definitely be wrong.), but the rest is only described as him not being able to help making “a fool of himself whenever she was around”. He obviously fancied her, but I never got the impression that he was actively stalking her. I don’t think everyone would have considered that the “height of cool”. LOL

    Anyway, just to add a bit to what Striped Candycane said about Lily's later feelings for James, and the fact that the bad things we see are through Snape's eyes, apparently most of the student body in his time at Hogwarts liked James. Lupin says that, “Everyone thought they were the height of cool.” And Snape even admits in DH that, “I’m just trying to show you they’re not as wonderful as everyone seems to think they are.”


    Admittedly, James and Sirius were truly awful to Snape in that one scene and Lily accuses James of hexing people who annoy him just because he could, which is a rather ugly trait. However, Snape isn’t someone who is weaker or innocent in the feud between them. He might not have been doing anything to deserve his treatment at the time, but Lupin also points out that Snape never passed up the opportunity to attack James either. Don’t get me wrong, I think what James and Sirius did (and Remus even, for remaining silent) was atrocious, attacking Snape out of the blue and doing so two against one. Bad form for Gryffindors! But, I don’t think it means they made a habit of being that vicious to all the others they had run-ins with. I always imagined it more of minor hexes at people who bothered them, sort of the way cocky jock types used to shoot spit balls at people they felt were beneath them. It isn’t nice, but not exactly monstrous either.

    Everyone that Harry cares about and whose opinion he would value tells him how wonderful both James and Lily were. Dumbledore even made James head boy, so he had to have redeeming qualities. Granted, Percy was Head Boy, but even he wasn’t all bad. I think James was spoiled and sometimes a jerk growing up, but I think he did grow up and what was left in the process must have been the part that was a really good person, which was there all along.

    Now, why can I not be as concise as Striped Candycane? I just love talking about the Marauders. It's a sickness. LOL

  4. #34
    cmwinters
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Striped_Candycane
    First of all, it is important that every single time we see James in a real-life situation (in other words, not the mirror of Erised or as a ghostly form), it is through Severus Snape’s memories. Would he remember any “kind James” moments? Of course not! James represents everything Severus hates, everything he could never have. Therefore, it is possible that there is a different James that lingers behind the pages.
    And that is absolutely and completely irrelevant, because Snape's memories of James aren't "tainted" they are *real life*. He didn't alter them to make James look bad. James looked bad all on his own. Snape's memories show reality, just like every other memory does.

    If you in any way doubt the absolute truth of that statement you need to go read the Mugglenet interview with Jo where she says, IN SO MANY WORDS, that the memory is an unbiased point of view.

    I post it again, here: http://www.mugglenet.com/jkrinterview3.shtml


    Quote Originally Posted by Striped_Candycane
    Second of all, let us not undermine Lily’s intelligence. She is too smart to let James’s alleged handsomeness lure her into loving someone who was cruel. With this in mind, we could think that Lily at least saw something in James that we reader’s don’t. And I think we can trust her instinct.
    And since there's no apparent reason for this, it's one reason why some people think she was drugged.

    Quote Originally Posted by Striped_Candycane
    Finally, James does die trying to protect his family. He dies trying to defend his ideals. He, along with Lily, “thrice defied” Lord Voldemort.
    I'm not saying that James was (or would have been) a bad father to Harry. However, I think Lucius was a good father to Draco, too, and that doens't mean that Lucius wasn't a Death Eater and didn't torture people.

    And it doesn't make either of them good PEOPLE.


    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    I have to admit that I do like James. I like him very much, even though I do think he was an arrogant little berk as a teenager, at least through fifth year. Still, I don’t think he was quite as bad even then as you obviously do (though you are fair to point out his better qualities, as well as bad.)
    Note how the bad ones far outweigh the good ones.

    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    First I’d like to defend Harry here. I think the reason he spends more time focusing on James in the books is that he gets to know James’ best friends and it is only natural to discuss him more with them. Also, Harry is a young man. He is also told repeatedly that he is like his father. I think it makes sense that he seems to consider his father more often. But Harry admitted to himself that he wasn’t doing his best to learn the Patronus Charm because he wanted to hear Lily’s voice. He was willing to suffer the horror of reliving those moments just to hear her voice. *gets all teary-eyed thinking of it*

    And there is this: DH SPOILER (do we still have to do that? ) In the forest with the Resurrection Stone. He could not speak. His eyes feasted on her, and he thought that he would like to stand and look at her forever, and that would be enough. *sob* It was Lily of all of them that he felt this for. /spoiler. I’m convinced Harry had immensely powerful feeling for her all along, we just don’t see him dwelling on it that much.
    See, I'm considerably less generous. I think that was far less "Harry as-a-person reaching out for Lily as-a-person" than it was "Scared kid running back to mum". Not that he didn't have every reason to be running back to Mum. But I don't think it had anything to do with his value for her personally and individually as a PERSON.

    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    I think James felt the way Harry did about the Slytherins, because so many of them obviously had links to Lord Voldemort and at the very least, James and his family probably had suspicions about this. His feelings on the Dark Arts would seem to be justified as well. From the definition of them, Dark, I think I would hate them on principle as well. That’s why they don’t teach the Dark Arts at Hogwarts, only DEFENSE AGAINST the Dark Arts. There was something said about Durmstrang teaching the Dark Arts and this was not mentioned as if it were a good thing.

    Also, James grew up during the rise of Voldemort. He would have known that Voldemort and his minions engaged in the Dark Arts and that would be a good reason to grow to hate them, and again the Slytherins, who did apparently comprise the larger part of Voldemort’s followers.
    Although Jo made it a point to say that not all the Slytherins were Death Eaters, and that not all the Death Eaters were Slytherins, she didn't do a particularly spectacular job of demonstrating this, in my opinion.

    However, having said that, you're saying that it's okay for James to have hated a quarter of the school because they MIGHT grow up to have ties to the Dark Lord? Good thing *I* didn't go to school with James, because that kind of behaviour would make me join the Dark Lord out of sheer spite. If the whole world is already against you because of something that happened when you were eleven that you couldn't control, and you have no prospects for life, employment or happiness other than joining up with people who are banding against that kind of behaviour, and your choice is to live homeless like a beggar, what are YOU going to do?

    That attitude is justifying bias and torment against eleven year old kids who aren't even really in control of themselves or their emotions, for choices they can't reasonably make, that will change their entire lives.

    An attitude which Dumbledore himself espouses, when he tells Snape that he (Snape) was Sorted too soon, giving the general impression that if Snape had been a GRYFFINDOR, everything would have been okay, he would have been treated with human compassion, but because he was Sorted into Slytherin, then he's not worth it.

    NOTHING in there says that "you know, maybe we're just great big jerks to Slytherins for no reason and drive them into their behaviour because we give them no other options. Maybe we should correct our own behaviour." No, it's "you should have been put somewhere else" because GOD FORBID people be responsible for their own unfair judgements of other people.


    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    And he shows no attraction to her throughout the rest of the scene. Then we have no evidence of his attraction to her until “a few years seem to have passed.” They were in fifth year when Snape seemed to realize that James fancied Lily. /spoiler] Also, I don’t think James did anything that would constitute harassment. He asked her out the one time that we saw (and I can’t decide if I think it was the first time he’d done so or not. It was so careless and offhanded that I almost think it was the first time he’d done it, and the way Lily reacted made me think it was new to her. I could definitely be wrong.), but the rest is only described as him not being able to help making “a fool of himself whenever she was around”. He obviously fancied her, but I never got the impression that he was actively stalking her. I don’t think everyone would have considered that the “height of cool”. LOL
    I'm pretty sure it was made clear that he'd made a habit of doing it since she said something like "I'll never go out with you" or "get it through your thick skull" or something. In any case, she was quite vehement about it and he just ignored her.

    Aside from the fact that it made me think that James just wanted Lily because Snape had her as a friend. He didn't really want Lily, per se, he just didn't want Snape to have something he didn't.


    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    Anyway, just to add a bit to what Striped Candycane said about Lily's later feelings for James, and the fact that the bad things we see are through Snape's eyes, apparently most of the student body in his time at Hogwarts liked James. Lupin says that, “Everyone thought they were the height of cool.” And Snape even admits in DH that, “I’m just trying to show you they’re not as wonderful as everyone seems to think they are.”
    But it's not THROUGH his eyes. It's the REALITY of their behaviour. Read the interview. I posted it in reply to Striped Candycane.

    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    Admittedly, James and Sirius were truly awful to Snape in that one scene and Lily accuses James of hexing people who annoy him just because he could, which is a rather ugly trait.
    But it wasn't one scene or one time. It was a history of it. Even Dumbledore says this.

    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    However, Snape isn’t someone who is weaker or innocent in the feud between them. He might not have been doing anything to deserve his treatment at the time, but Lupin also points out that Snape never passed up the opportunity to attack James either.
    No, but Snape attacked James *directly*. James attacked Snape when he had an entire group of people backing him up and they weren't looking.

    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    Don’t get me wrong, I think what James and Sirius did (and Remus even, for remaining silent) was atrocious, attacking Snape out of the blue and doing so two against one.
    Four.

    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    Bad form for Gryffindors! But, I don’t think it means they made a habit of being that vicious to all the others they had run-ins with. I always imagined it more of minor hexes at people who bothered them, sort of the way cocky jock types used to shoot spit balls at people they felt were beneath them. It isn’t nice, but not exactly monstrous either.
    You know, people who are singled out and bullied quite frankly feel that whether it's once or repeatedly, for the rest of their lives, and bullies DON'T EVER do it once, they do it ALL. THE. TIME. Even Harry sees in the Pensieve scene that it was apparent that it was regular behaviour, and Remus & Sirius admit it.

  5. #35
    Striped_Candycane
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    And that is absolutely and completely irrelevant, because Snape's memories of James aren't "tainted" they are *real life*. He didn't alter them to make James look bad. James looked bad all on his own. Snape's memories show reality, just like every other memory does.

    If you in any way doubt the absolute truth of that statement you need to go read the Mugglenet interview with Jo where she says, IN SO MANY WORDS, that the memory is an unbiased point of view.
    I am not doubting for a moment that the memory is biased. I'm merely saying that the memory was a vulnerable point for Snape, so it quite obviously would not be one of James acting heroic in any way. He deliberately nurtures those memories where James acts his worst, as is in Snape's nature, but will probably pass by those where he acts good.

    I am not saying that Snape doesn’t have a reason for this, nor am I denying that in the two memories we see James is extremely nasty, I’m just stating that these are two memories taken from Snape’s mind, where most of them would probably be bad.

    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    And since there's no apparent reason for this, it's one reason why some people think she was drugged.
    Of course we could say she was drugged. We could say Voldemort was under the Imperius Curse the entire time. We could say Dumbledore secretly fed Harry Potter Felix Felices his entire life, because otherwise he couldn’t have had so many lucky escapes. I just don’t see the evidence for Lily being drugged other than she couldn’t have married James on her own accord. She just couldn’t!

    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    I'm not saying that James was (or would have been) a bad father to Harry. However, I think Lucius was a good father to Draco, too, and that doens't mean that Lucius wasn't a Death Eater and didn't torture people.

    And it doesn't make either of them good PEOPLE.
    So now we’re comparing a stupid teenage bully to a Death Eater? These things are just not on the same scale. I’m sure many Death Eaters do start out as bullies, but that does not mean that every bully remains one throughout their entire lives, and does not mean that they can never be redeemed.

    In fact, I object to separating people into “good” and “bad”. It is very easy to do this for convenience, and yet I think that most characters, especially in J.K Rowling’s world, are a mixture of both. There are very few people that are perfectly good, and very few that are perfectly bad. Everyone had weak moments. James was someone that, like everyone else, had moments where he would be plain nasty, especially towards Snape, but we cannot deny that he could be heroic at times.

    Then again, with James, I believe it really depends on whether you are pessimistic or optimistic. We should probably not ask ourselves: “was James Potter a bully when he was younger?” because he quite obviously was. We should instead wonder if he did, in fact, redeem himself in his 7th year, and if his constant battles for the Order did make him a better person.

  6. #36
    A.H.
    Guest
    *stares around a bit nervously*..... Not to budge in on a heated discussion, but I have a few things I'd like to add...
    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    NOTHING in there says that "you know, maybe we're just great big jerks to Slytherins for no reason and drive them into their behaviour because we give them no other options. Maybe we should correct our own behaviour." No, it's "you should have been put somewhere else" because GOD FORBID people be responsible for their own unfair judgements of other people.
    I have to agree with your reasoning here. I don't remember the exact quote, but Ron says something to the nature of "If it means we have to buddy with with the Slytherins -fat chance."
    He isn't specifying just one Slytherin, or a group of them, he's generalizing the lot of them. I could say more but... *points to thread title* tis supposed to be about James.


    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    Aside from the fact that it made me think that James just wanted Lily because Snape had her as a friend. He didn't really want Lily, per se, he just didn't want Snape to have something he didn't.[/COLOR][/FONT]
    I'm getting the feeling that you don't like James... I can't say that I don't either but I have to admit I agree with just about everything you've said about him. He instigated the animosity from the very begining, when Severus announced to Lily that he hoped she would be in Slytherin. If I remember correctly, which admitidly I may not, James said something snide and Severus ignored him. From that moment I think that James saw Sev as a threat, not like Draco saw Harry, but as a general git who might challange him.
    Also, I don't think that he only wanted Lily because she was friends with Severus. I mean I wouldn't try for seven years to get a guy to go out with me, simply because my archenemy liked her. No, I think that as time went on, she became a challange to him also. He would get everything he wanted, IE attention, good grades, etc (not sure about the grades... but you get my point) but he couldn't get Lily. This, mixed with the longing to thwart Severus, plus maybe a bit of general liking, is what I think gave James motive to wanting to be with Lily.


    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    But it wasn't one scene or one time. It was a history of it. Even Dumbledore says this.
    No, we don't need FF to tell us this. James was quite crude to Severus in the memory, and if it were an uncommon thing I doubt whether either of them would have been so quick to pull out their wands.
    pg 646, ch 28, OotP, AC
    "Snape reacted so fast it was as though he had been expecting an attack:"
    He was expecting the attack because, from what we can gather from canon, they were indeed worst enemies. Enemies don't often sit down to a cup of tea, so use your guesses to imagine what went on in their time. From the first meeting, James was crude to Severus; it is completely in my own opinion that I expect no one else to agree with, I think that James was one of the sole reasons that Severus became a Death Eater. I'd very much like to elaborate, but once again, *points at thread title*.

    Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    However, Snape isn’t someone who is weaker or innocent in the feud between them. He might not have been doing anything to deserve his treatment at the time, but Lupin also points out that Snape never passed up the opportunity to attack James either.
    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    No, but Snape attacked James *directly*. James attacked Snape when he had an entire group of people backing him up and they weren't looking.[/FONT]
    Well, although this may be a sign of cowardice on James' part, I think it was more that he [James] was like Draco. If he were going to show off by *torturing* (used lightly, for lack of a better word) then what would be the use if there weren't any onlookers?
    As for Snape's defence... it was in defence. I can't deny that Snape must have started some of the duels -if he was being bullied, Severus Snape isn't the type of man to only attack once attacked - but Lupin was trying to protect Harry's thought about James. However horrible the past was, Lupin wouldn't have wanted to dishonor Jame's memory; espcially not in the eyes of Jame's own son.


    Quote Originally Posted by Striped_Candycane
    I am not doubting for a moment that the memory is biased. I'm merely saying that the memory was a vulnerable point for Snape, so it quite obviously would not be one of James acting heroic in any way. He deliberately nurtures those memories where James acts his worst, as is in Snape's nature, but will probably pass by those where he acts good.

    I am not saying that Snape doesn’t have a reason for this, nor am I denying that in the two memories we see James is extremely nasty, I’m just stating that these are two memories taken from Snape’s mind, where most of them would probably be bad.
    Sorry, but I have to respectfuly disagree. Snape didn't "prepare" those memories for Harry to see. I don't mean "tampered with", but he didn't intend on Harry seeing them. On the contrary, he deliberatly tried to hide them from Harry, on the off-chance of Harry accomplishing Legimens. Had Snape wanted to prove to Harry that James was, indeed, not the man that every one said he was, he could have gone about it in a different way, a better way. Severus wasn't a dumb man.


    Quote Originally Posted by Striped_Candycane
    In fact, I object to separating people into “good” and “bad”. It is very easy to do this for convenience, and yet I think that most characters, especially in J.K Rowling’s world, are a mixture of both. There are very few people that are perfectly good, and very few that are perfectly bad. Everyone had weak moments. James was someone that, like everyone else, had moments where he would be plain nasty, especially towards Snape, but we cannot deny that he could be heroic at times.
    He did have his good sides, that I can not deny. I like to think of James as a heroic man too, but only to the people he liked. Which, in turn, makes him sort of a heroic prat.

    Edit- I just read a little Mod comment in another thread... s'cuse meh lack of facts that concern fan-fiction. The discussion of Severus' motives and James' as well does very much help with the the almost forgotten fic I'm writing about J/L, but meh discussion mentioned nothing about it. Ermm.. long apology, but hopefully yeh get the point

  7. #37
    Pafoo
    Guest
    a.h and CM, you are my heroes.

    ...

    On topic:

    In fact, I object to separating people into “good” and “bad”. It is very easy to do this for convenience, and yet I think that most characters, especially in J.K Rowling’s world, are a mixture of both. There are very few people that are perfectly good, and very few that are perfectly bad. Everyone had weak moments. James was someone that, like everyone else, had moments where he would be plain nasty, especially towards Snape, but we cannot deny that he could be heroic at times.
    I don't think James was a good person that had bouts of bad - I come at it from the perspective that he was generally awful, but nice around some people. He just hung around those people he would be nice to more often than the people he wouldn't.

    No, but Snape attacked James *directly*. James attacked Snape when he had an entire group of people backing him up and they weren't looking.
    That's pretty much the crux of the matter - Severus attaced James because James was encroaching/being a general bastard. James attacked Severus because it would get him attention. More specifically, he attacked *Severus* because, really, who would care?

    Apparently, not even Snape's "best friend."

  8. #38
    kask
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    Quote Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    First I’d like to defend Harry here. I think the reason he spends more time focusing on James in the books is that he gets to know James’ best friends and it is only natural to discuss him more with them. Also, Harry is a young man. He is also told repeatedly that he is like his father. I think it makes sense that he seems to consider his father more often. But Harry admitted to himself that he wasn’t doing his best to learn the Patronus Charm because he wanted to hear Lily’s voice. He was willing to suffer the horror of reliving those moments just to hear her voice. *gets all teary-eyed thinking of it*

    And there is this: DH SPOILER (do we still have to do that?) In the forest with the Resurrection Stone. He could not speak. His eyes feasted on her, and he thought that he would like to stand and look at her forever, and that would be enough. *sob* It was Lily of all of them that he felt this for. /spoiler. I’m convinced Harry had immensely powerful feeling for her all along, we just don’t see him dwelling on it that much.
    See, I'm considerably less generous. I think that was far less "Harry as-a-person reaching out for Lily as-a-person" than it was "Scared kid running back to mum". Not that he didn't have every reason to be running back to Mum. But I don't think it had anything to do with his value for her personally and individually as a PERSON.
    I have to disagree here. I think, throughout his life, Harry understood the sacrifice Lily made for him and I don't think he ever treasured James above her. I don't think that it was a scared kid running to his mother, how would that apply with the Dementor attacks? He wanted to hear her voice because it's his mother. Yes, he did want a mother, so maybe it was him just running back to her, but I don't think so. I think that there is a special relationship between a mother and a son, a different sort of love, and I think Harry felt that throughout his life. I agree with moonymaniac, he heard about James more (from his two friend) and was always compared to James (especially by Snape and through Quidditch) so he would think about James more. But I do not doubt for a second he didn't love both of his parents and want to know both of them.

    I feel like by saying Harry didn't want to know his mother personally and individually is a very general statement that is not correct on any level. Harry grew up alone. He had no one and the thing he wanted most -- parents, love, a family. He wanted to know Lily on any level he could, and if he had the choice, he would have wanted to know her as a mother and as a person.

    I think that was far less "Harry as-a-person reaching out for Lily as-a-person."
    I agree. I think it was Harry-as-a-person reaching out for Lily-as-a-mother. He wasn't a scared kid running back to his mum, but he was a parentless boy reaching out to his mother.


    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters[QUOTE
    Originally Posted by moonymaniac
    Don’t get me wrong, I think what James and Sirius did (and Remus even, for remaining silent) was atrocious, attacking Snape out of the blue and doing so two against one.
    Four.[/QUOTE]

    Actually, we don't know this. Since we seem to be judging James from the two memories we have of him, we see two people cursing Snape. I think it was rarely four. I don't think Remus was with them a lot of the time and I don't think Peter was either. Remus says that, although he wasn't that bad, he was just as bad for not stopping them.

    Also, we only have that one memory, which shows two-on-one. Sirius mentions that Snape hung with a Slytherin-gang and then Lily talks about Snape's friendship with Avery and Mulciber. She talks about how they used to Dark Arts for a few laughs, so I think it could have been those three planning things against James & Sirius.

    I also feel like Severus had an active role in their lives, on his own accord. I don't feel like Snape really distanced himself from James and Sirius. I get the feeling that he had an interest in them, and that led to a lot of the hexing between them. Snape was never ironclad with Lily's feelings toward James and Sirius, how could he be? They were in the same House, they were in the same classes, they were hanging around in the common room. We know he's unsure when she insults them in DH and he gets relaxed again. I think Snape always suspected Lily might have liked James, and maybe did a little sneaking around to try to get information to make them look bad in Lily's eyes. Like his interest in Lupin, he wants dirt on the Marauders, and I think he'd go looking for it, causing problems between them.

    I think that, while they wrongfully teased Snape, we saw it under one circumstance. We see Snape as the weak one, but we don't know anything else. The previous day, Snape, Avery and Mulciber could have attacked James when he was walking down the hallway alone. Or he could have been spying on them, trying to find out about Moony's condition, so they went after him the next day. There are a ton of possible scenarios that show Snape isn't quite the victim he is made out to be.

    I would like to add that we do not know who threw the first spell between Snape and James. After James made fun of Snape on the train, Snape could have gone looking for him later to show him some curses he learned.

  9. #39
    Fawkes_the_Phoenix
    Guest
    kask brings up a good point about how Snape was friends with people who used the dark arts just for fun. There is a big difference between hexing people and cursing people. If Snape and Co. were running around cursing people with the dark magic then I feel that James had some right so strike back. I'm not saying that he should have hexed just anyone, but if Snape used dark arts then he had it coming to him.

    I had a question- Do you think that James (and the other Marauders) would have said Voldemort's name? I would think so because James is so arrogant and thinks he's so great that I could see his using it. Also because he does join the Order and Dumbledore encouraged everyone (at least in the second war) to call Voldemort by his name. The only reason I have to support him not using it was because it appears that people were more afraid in the first war. That this was completly new, nothing like this had happened since Grindelwald. In the second war, they have the knowledge that someone (Harry) has already "beaten" him, which may have made them feel a teensy bit better.
    What do you think?

  10. #40
    queen fan
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Fawkes_the_Phoenix
    I had a question- Do you think that James (and the other Marauders) would have said Voldemort's name? I would think so because James is so arrogant and thinks he's so great that I could see his using it. Also because he does join the Order and Dumbledore encouraged everyone (at least in the second war) to call Voldemort by his name. The only reason I have to support him not using it was because it appears that people were more afraid in the first war. That this was completly new, nothing like this had happened since Grindelwald. In the second war, they have the knowledge that someone (Harry) has already "beaten" him, which may have made them feel a teensy bit better.
    What do you think?
    I would think that James would have used Voldemort's name. Like you said, he was in the Order and Dumbledore did encourage everyone to use Voldemort's name. I think that Remus and Sirius would have used his name too, but Peter would be a little more hesitant about it. He did betray them and he's not exactly the most (can't think of the word).

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