I'm Still Not Over...how Ginny was mangled in 'Harry Potter' films
It’s a conversation any books-first Harry Potter fan is all too familiar with: You’re talking about how wonderful Harry Potter is (because just because it’s nearly 2014 doesn’t mean you’re stopping that conversation any time soon), and your friend brings up that it doesn’t make any sense Harry wound up with Ginny Weasley of all people, because Ginny is the worst.
I’m sorry. This isn’t true at all! That’s just what Warner Brothers inexplicably wanted you to think because of the fact Ginny was in roughly 20 minutes of the entire franchise (time spent nearly dying in the Chamber of Secrets when she was 11 not included). Ginny is a really cool girl who becomes a really cool lady and –bonus! — through her J.K. Rowling taught teenage readers a lot of really valuable lessons about being yourself, owning your own accomplishments, and not waiting around for guys (well, at least not too much).
But while Book Ginny was a dynamic, feisty character, Film Ginny is a Manic Pixie Wallflower that could be literally anyone Daniel Radcliffe had zero chemistry with. Seriously, was it not possible for her to accio a personality from anyone in the general vicinity? Her entire role in the movies was to awkwardly kiss Harry once at the Burrow and once at Hogwarts, and then stare at him while he ran around actually doing things during the final battles.
There are plenty of Harry Potter book-to-film changes I’m still not over. (Who are the Marauders, you ask? Don’t ask anyone who only watched the movies!) But recently, what’s bugging me more and more is how little respect Ginny gets — and I think a lot of it is because of the films. It’s time someone stood up and defended her; She’s actually a really cool character — it’s just that none of her awesomeness translated onscreen.
First of all, here is a classic awkward moment to refresh your memory about why the movie version didn’t do her justice. (Note: I’m experiencing secondhand embarrassment even bringing this up.)
Book Ginny would never. Let’s take a trip down memory lane…
Number One: Ginny from the book didn’t wait around for any man. When the boy of her dreams appeared disinterested (he had a few other things on his mind!) she didn’t get desperate. Instead, she got friendly with Dean, showing The Chosen One she had plenty of other things going on in her life. Next!
Number Two: While Harry is crushing on Cho in Order of the Phoenix, Ginny didn’t let her crush stand in the way of being useful and smart. She gave him support for Dumbledore’s Army, and helped fight at the Department of Mysteries, among other battles.
Number Three: While Harry, Ron and Hermione were off roaming a forest, Ginny was actually braving things out at Hogwarts — and it wasn’t all Yule Balls and Quidditch. In the books, Ginny and Neville are shown to be keeping the rebellion going at school (“Dumbledore’s Army, still recruiting“) — but only Neville’s heroism made the film. Ginny got to be a movie girlfriend, instead. -100 Points from the House of Movie Studios.
Number Four: This isn’t bada**, per se, but I always thought it was really cool that right before Harry and Ginny finally kissed, Ginny was off winning a Quidditch game because her dumb crush was stuck in detention. Guys, am I right?
With the films finished, I guess I’ll just have to hold out hope the just-announced stage version of Harry Potter will show Ginny in a better light — perhaps with a little something like this: