Harry Potter’s elusive fans

For Harry Potter fans, the long-awaited release of J.K Rowling’s sizable sixth installment has been a thing of the past. Now, they are eagerly awaiting the new movie “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” which will be in theaters on November 18.

The world of entertainment is a flutter with anticipation. But, here at St. John’s, such frivolous fiction has no affect on the students. Or does it?

The first Harry Potter book debuted when most current St. John’s students were in their early to mid-teens. As each new book was released, the readers’ dedication increased. So where have all the college-aged Harry Potter fans gone?

It was with this thought in mind that I embarked on a quest to find the elusive St. John’s Harry Potter enthusiast. It was not easy. Many walk among us under the guise of normal students, afraid to admit to the ever-judging world that, yes, they do read Harry Potter.

It was in the deepest dankest corner of DaSilva Hall in which I found my first subject, a perfect example of a ‘closeted Harry Potter fan.’ Although he admitted to being a dedicated reader since the first book, owning two copies of each movie and the first four books in hardcover (now that’s hardcore), his resistance to show his liking was astounding. On a scale of one to 10, he rated himself as a seven when it came to being a fan. However, when asked how he would rate himself in the presence of friends, the number dropped to 1.5.

When asked if he was considering attending the midnight showing of the new movie, he replied, “It was a thought.”

This is not to say that there are no Harry Potter fans willing to show their pride. Despite the increase in prejudice that fans have to face everyday, some have fought through the injustice.

Freshman Amadeo Plaza is a perfect example. Plaza was an instant fan when his mother introduced him to the series in 2000, slightly late in the game. He owns all the books in hardcover, excluding the fifth, which he has on CD.

And how does he rate himself as a fan?

“I’m about an 8.5, and frankly, I’m not ashamed of being a fan in front of my friends,” Plaza said. “I like children’s fantasy literature, because of all genres, it takes me the furthest away from reality, something people try to accomplish everyday.”

And it is that escape from reality which turns many people into Harry Potter fans, whether they admit it or not.