RANKING THE BOOKS AND FILMS
Right off the bat I have to say that the films were much easier to rank than the books. No biggie, I thought. Piece of cake, right? WRONG! I always forget exactly how much I love the books and the more I think about which one is better than another the more special scenes and moments I recall… And it makes it almost impossible! *Sigh*. I did do it eventually but it took me a long time to rank them, and let me honest: it is only the first, second to last, and last place I’m 100% certain of. The rest is… Well is because I had to and as it turns out it pretty much aligned with when they came out anyway. The only thing separating them is a certain moment, or a feeling, or a plot twist. That’s it. That’s a freaking high bar of excellence if you ask me! Anyway, ONWARD!
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Because of the different feel and pace, and the fact that it contains most of my favourite chapters of the entire series I simply had to put it in first place. It ties the knot on the entire story so beautifully and is one of the most satisfying reads I’ve ever had in my life. It is quiet, it’s action packed, it’s tragic and stunning. It’s a masterpiece!
2. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
It’s high on my list due to three things. First, it’s the magical beginning of the whole series and I enjoy being introduced to it all no matter how many times I read it (and I’ve read it a lot!) Everything is described in such great detail; especially Diagon Alley and the Great Hall of Hogwarts is just ah, nostalgia! Second, I don’t know about you but I freaking LOVE Snape’s Potion Task (or whatever it’s called). It shows that magic can’t, and won’t, always save you and it’s a nice reminder that sometimes you need to stop and think instead of just waving your wand around. Third, it has one of the most profound and important chapters, The Mirror of Erised – I actually call it The Mirror of Desire but… whatever – and just reading the chapter title I can’t help but get tears in my eyes. The image of Harry getting lost in the mirror, how sad it is, how utterly important, is in my opinion one of the most memorable moments in the entire series. It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.
3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Lupin, the meaning of Dementors, time travel (and the revelation of one of my favourite props of all time: the Time-Turner) AND the second biggest plot twist in the series: Scabbers being Peter Pettigrew!!! Fuck Sirius Black! As soon as Scabbers turns out to be Pettigrew I almost forget that Sirius exists. He’s not really that interesting to be honest.
4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
This book, I think, is underrated, by myself especially. I never remember how good it is before I sit down and open it. It is a travesty! It’s different, dark and exciting. We feel them being teenagers and all that entails. I love the tasks, the final one (The Maze) being my favourite (hence why I hate that it got ruined in the film), and the whole thing with Crouch Jr. You think you’ve experienced all that there is in this book and then BAM! You get something more, something even more brilliant. AND, we get to truly see why Dumbldore is so damn amazing!
“There was cold fury in every line of the ancient face; a sense of power radiated from Dumbledore as though he were giving off burning heat.”
5. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
I must admit that I mostly enjoy diving into, and exploring, the past of Tom Riddle. Harry’s encounters with Slughorn, meh not so much. I’ve always wondered what would’ve happened had Snape still been the Potion’s Master, seeing Harry using Snape’s old school book. That would have been interesting. Instead, Harry gets to annoy the shit out of Hermione by beating her in Potion’s Class. I love Hermione, but I enjoy those passages immensely. As a result of Potion’s suddenly being a decent class – I actually think Slughorn is a wonderful teacher (despite his ego) – we get to learn about some of the more interesting and advanced potions, and actually care about them. In previous books Snape always took focus away from that, but now we can enjoy the true wonderous magic. Unfortunately that means that the bat is now stealing focus away from another interesting subject: Defense Against the Dark Arts. Lupin, come back! We miss you! Anyway, spending so much time with Dumbledore, learning about Horcruxes, and watching how Tom Riddle was a child, teen and young adult is really exciting and by far why I want to read this book.
6. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
It used to be on last place until Order of the Phoenix was published. The Book Club actually helped me to appreciate this book a bit more, and even though I will never love it I don’t dread reading it anymore which is a huge plus.
7. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
*Sigh*. People tend to think that I don’t like it because of Umbridge. That’s not the case. I’m not sure exactly what it is but I only really enjoy the chapters in the Department of Mysteries. The book is dragging on in what seems like forever, literally since the Danish version has 930 pages. Unfortunately those 930 pages feels like 2000 and OH MY GOD why is it so dry and long and….. *Sigh* And Sirius dies but because I don’t really like him that much I don’t really care (sorry, but you have to cry your tears for him elsewhere). The ending with a mourning Harry in Dumbledor’s office is the only thing pulling my heartstrings and make me feel some deeper emotion than just boredom and tension. I get that it’s an important book for the plot as a whole but I won’t lie and say that I don’t dread reading it. It is what it is. I wonder how it would’ve been had it been written from Luna’s perspective.
I haven’t really got a lot to say about the films. It’s not that I dislike them but they don’t fill me with joy and nostalgia like the books do. The films are ordered by how likely I am to grab it on a film night.
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I
2. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
3. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
4. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
5. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
6. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II
7. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
8: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
There you go, this is how I’d rank the books and films. I will let you know that this process was painful at best. Bloody hell! Don’t ever do what I just did to yourself. Just go with “they’re all amazing!” I hope to see you tomorrow where you’ll read about my favourite characters. Cheers!
How would you rank them?
Be sure to leave your thoughts and comments down below.