Eleven-year-old Alicia still can’t believe it’s happening. Another Harry Potter movie is coming out this week! And Queen Rowling has promised four more in the near future! But even with the magic of Hogwarts living to bring in a new generation, there have been times when I need to be reminded that I’m not the only British-orphan-loving nerd on the planet.
So in honor of the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movie premier this weekend…
BEST HARRY POTTER NERD GOLDMINES:
- A Very Potter Musical: It all started on University of Michigan’s campus in 2007 and exploded into an internet phenomenon of cult classic proportions. Starring Glee heartthrob Darren Criss and written by Starkid Productions, the musical combines storylines from all seven books into hours of magical foot-stomping madness. You never knew (until you watch this) how much you were missing Harry Potter’s mad skills on the guitar, an Edward Cullen poster turned horcrux, or the strange confessions of Quirrell and Voldemort as the oddest couple you might ever meet. And wait, there’s more! A Very Potter Sequel and A Very Potter Senior Year are also available for streaming on YouTube any time you feel you need to “get back to Hogwarts!”
- Potter Puppet Pals: The last video might have been made three years ago, but that does not in any way make this YouTube channel any less awesome. Creator Neil Cicierega started off with a collection of homemade puppets made for him by his mother, and the idea only exploded from there. Turn to this channel for “The Mysterious Ticking Noise,” wizard angst, and a song about apparating that you will have stuck in your head for days. If you love Harry Potter even half as much as I do, I promise you won’t be disappointed!
- Jim Dale Audiobooks: When the fourth book came out in the summer of 2000 (whoa, that was over 15 years ago…), my parents came up with a creative solution for my brother and me fighting over the one copy they bought. That’s how I was first exposed to the Harry Potter series, as narrated by Jim Dale. He is voice actor who performs all of the characters and narration by himself, all the way from Dobby to Hagrid to Harry Potter himself. If you’re a fan of the books and want an easy way to dive into them all over again, these are perfect for you! (Also, shameless plug for Audible: Download the app onto your phone, and you can have Jim Dale’s Harry Potter with you wherever you go!)
- Fangirl: I picked up this book by Rainbow Rowell on the recommendation of one of my students last year, and I was not disappointed. This book tells the story of Cath, a not-so-sneaky fanfiction author who is struggling with growing up and letting go of her favorite childhood series. Rowell can claim the series is about Simon Snow all she wants, but when I hear a story about an orphan boy who one day finds out he’s a wizard and is sent off to wizard school, where he meets some best friends and learns how to overcome a seriously ugly bad guy, I know who you’re really talking about. That’s right, Rainbow Rowell. I’m onto you. And I love it. Also, her follow-up novel, Carry On, is really good. You should definitely check out both!
- Original Series Illustrated Editions: Jim Kay truly is a wizard. And hey, Christmas is coming, Courtney. And the illustrated Chamber of Secrets came out in October of this year. Just saying…
Thanks to the internet, I know that you are never too adult to love Harry Potter. Never. I hope this list can help us all solemnly swear that we’re up to no good in the near future.