This post is a complete and detailed archive of every Mark Reads Harry Potter review I ever wrote. All of these posts do not live here on this site, but on Buzznet.com, where I was under contract to write the series. Additionally, the comment conversations that happened underneath these reviews are as much a part of the experience as the reviews themselves, so I have no interest in separating the two.
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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Chapter 1: The Boy Who Lived – In which Mark makes some terrible, terrible predictions about the series and makes it seem like he deeply, deeply hates everything, except for leather daddies.
Chapter 2: The Vanishing Glass – In which Mark writes the first “diary” entry and latches on to Harry’s friendship with the spiders, which proves to be deeply hilarious by the end of the next book.
Chapter 3: The Letters From No One – In which Mark writes a faux set of notes from an imaginary therapist listening to the inanity of Vernon Dursley’s life, which is actually the worst executed joke in modern history. No, just read the comments. What is wrong with me?
Chapter 4: The Keeper of the Keys – In which Mark begins his gradual descent into Harry Potter fanboy when he gets a full introduction to Rubeus Hagrid and then professes his love to him.
Chapter 5: Diagon Alley – In which Mark loses his mind over a chapter in Harry Potter for the first time.
Chapter 6: The Journey From Platform Nine And Three-Quarters – In which Mark writes his first review as if Hedwig could write a log of her actions, which is also deeply absurd, but hey, THIS SERIES IS ABOUT WIZARDS AND WITCHES.
Chapter 7: The Sorting Hat – In which Mark makes fun of Hufflepuffs because he may–MAY–have only scored two points away from being put into that house. Or something.
Chapter 8: The Potions Master – In which Mark gets his first full introduction to Snape and unleashes his fury with every angry GIF ever made.
Chapter 9: The Midnight Duel – In which HELICOPTER RIDES and BULLETED LIST and FUCKING CEREBRUS.
Chapter 10: Halloween – In which Mark explains Quidditch with an overcomplicated flowchart.
Chapter 11: Quidditch – In which Mark experiences his first Quidditch match and the first chapter he isn’t much of a fan of.
Chapter 12: The Mirror of Erised – In which Mark holds the very first CAPS LOCK party when he meets the Mirror of Erised.
Chapter 13: Nicholas Flamel – In which Mark writes the first part of Potter: A Play and reveals exactly how his brain is totally wired in a way that allows him to think of such things.
Chapter 14: Norbert the Norwegian Ridgeback – In which FUCKIN’ DRAGONS, HOW DO THEY WORK?
Chapter 15: The Forbidden Forest – In which, for the very first time, Mark learns how SHIT GETS REAL in the Harry Potter series.
Chapter 16: Through The Trap Door – In which Mark expresses his shock and disbelief at the danger of the end of this first novel through a repetitive set of GIFs.
Chapter 17: The Man With Two Faces – In which Mark can only express his emotions at the unbelievable conclusion of The Sorcerer’s Stone with a ridiculous amount of KEYSMASH.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Chapter 1: The Worst Birthday – In which Mark explains why the first chapter of the second book isn’t that good until the end.
Chapter 2: Dobby’s Warning – In which Mark explains how Dobby is a combination between Yoda and Jar Jar Binks (mostly Jar Jar) and professes his seething hatred for him, all the while unknowingly making a fool of himself in the process because Dobby turns out to be pretty awesome.
Chapter 3: The Burrow – In which Mark throws a party for the Weasleys as he enters the Burrow for the first time.
Chapter 4: At Flourish and Blotts – In which Mark realizes he can’t do one post per weekday and ever hope to finish this series in any normal amount of time, so he hastily agrees to something that will eventually take over his life. Oh, and he meets the Malfoy family and RAGES.
Chapter 5: The Whomping Willow – In which Mark complains about Rowling’s pervasive use of adverbs and writes possibly the shortest review ever.
Chapter 6: Gilderoy Lockhart – In which Mark writes an entire review in the voice of Lockhart. Fun fact: This review was one of the hardest to write for me because I kept having to erase passages that were TOO NICE. Jesus.
Chapter 7: Mudbloods and Murmurs – In which Mark creates the (obvious) Twitter account of Colin Creevey, thereby proving the only real purpose to have a Twitter. Also, little known fact: That Twitter account is simply one of the Twilight ones I used with just a namechange. Some people added the old Edward account and, to this day, still @reply me as if I am REALLY EDWARD.
Chapter 8: The Deathday Party – In which Mark (kind of) complains that Chamber of Secrets is moving slowly and then BAM SHIT GETS REAL.
Chapter 9: The Writing on the Wall – In which Mark rambles for a really long time.
Chapter 10: The Rogue Bludger – In which Mark utilizes an actual DUN DUN DUN sound effect for the entire review. Which, in hindsight, is really fucking silly.
Chapter 11: The Dueling Club – In which Mark compiles “Everything in Chapter 11 of Chamber of Secrets That Rules.” This is the start of my obsession with reviewing in the form of lists. I LOVE DOING IT because it is a rather brilliant way of organizing my haggard thoughts.
Chapter 12: Polyjuice Potion – In which Mark loses his mind over the idea (and execution) of Polyjuice Potion and also makes a really embarrassing Blingee GIF of Hagrid that will be used against him in some sort of morals court in 2035.
Chapter 13: The Very Secret Diary – In which Mark complains about how poor the story is for the first fifteen pages (in hindsight, I am stupid and seriously, I can’t believe I missed the “clues” here) and then has his heart broken because he learns about Hagrid’s tragic past at Hogwarts.
Chapter 14: Cornelius Fudge – In which Hagrid is shipped off to Azkaban and Mark expresses his disbelief with as many O NOES macros he can find.
Chapter 15: Aragog – In which Mark flips the fuck out over giant spiders and Moaning Myrtle.
Chapter 16: The Chamber of Secrets – In which Mark continues to lose his mind over this book, but is upset over….tunnel slides? Man, I pick the strangest things to dislike.
Chapter 17: The Heir of Slytherin – In which Mark writes the second review as Lockhart (this time, post-Ron-wand-backfire) as a way to criticize the predictable endgame of Chamber of Secrets. I still don’t like it SO SUE ME.
Chapter 18: Dobby’s Reward – In which Mark MAY first use “Haters to the left” and feels better about Chamber of Secrets because of Dobby.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Chapter 1: Owl Post – In which Mark writes another one of Harry’s diary entries. And it’s not that good. Oh well.
Chapter 2: Aunt Marge’s Big Mistake – In which Mark is overjoyed to see Rowling’s deviation from her normal openings, rants about Aunt Marge’s bigotry, and then realizes he can TOTALLY RELATE to Harry since Harry ran away from home JUST LIKE HE DID except in entirely different contexts and Mark is slowly slipping into pure fanboyism. Um.
Chapter 3: The Knight Bus – In which Mark elaborates on his ASTRAL PLANE CONNECTION with Harry and totally falls in love with Sirius Black, setting up the worst heartbreak OF ALL TIME. 🙁 🙁 🙁
Chapter 4: The Leaky Cauldron – In which Mark freaks out about spoilers and loves how Rowling has turned this novel into a great story about BEING AFRAID OF A PSYCHOPATHIC MURDERER STALKING SOMEONE.
Chapter 5: The Dementor – In which Mark writes a review as if a dementer has attacked him? There are some great lines here that I like and I’m proud of writing, but as a whole, this is like THE WEIRDEST REVIEW EVER. Looking at the date…yeah, I can’t explain it at all.
Chapter 6: Talons and Tea Leaves – In which Mark gushes about how much he loves everything in the world ever and most especially when Hagrid gets drunk…in a children’s book.
Chapter 7: The Boggart in the Wardrobe – In which Mark falls deeply in love with Remus Lupin and SNAPE IN A DRESS!
Chapter 8: Flight of the Fat Lady – In which Mark elaborates on an earlier tidbit of a story and relates about his past as a runaway, which bizarrely parallels to Harry’s experience with his first non-trip to Hogsmeade.
Chapter 9: Grim Defeat – In which Mark loves that Rowling takes risks with her characters and then demands a Snape backstory. Oh, I had to wait sooooooooo long.
Chapter 10: The Marauder’s Map – In which Mark posts a super long reason why you can’t spoil him and then posts lots of exclamation points and excited statements when he learns about the Marauder’s Map and Black’s backstory.
Chapter 11: Firebolt – In which Mark GIF-cries as much as possible over a deeply depressing part of Harry’s life and Hagrid’s terror over losing Buckbeak.
Chapter 12: The Patronus – In which Mark admits that maybe he’s not as harsh on Rowling as he should be because he’s having such a good time. Then he falls even deeper in love with Remus Lupin.
Chapter 13: Gryffindor Versus Ravenclaw – In which Mark experiences unbearable tension before he erupts into FFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUU
Chapter 14: Snape’s Grudge – In which Mark’s entire HP worldview is shattered when he learns that Snape has a viable justification for hating Harry’s father (and him, in a way).
Chapter 15: The Quidditch Final – In which Mark writes an entire review as Lee Jordan. True story: This was one of my favorite reviews to write, ever, and I actually tried to bring the Lee Jordan review back again during Order of the Phoenix, but the logistics of telling a story with him in only half the action proved impossible.
Chapter 16: Professor Trelawney’s Prediction – In which Mark is creeped out by Trelawney’s prediction and then devastated by the death of Buckbeak.
Chapter 17: Cat, Rat, and Dog – In which Mark holds the second CAPSLOCK PARTY after the utterly mindblowing chapter in which it’s revealed that Sirius Black is an Animagus, Lupin is a werewolf, and Scabbers the rat is actually Peter Pettigrew.
Chapter 18: Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs – In which Mark has his very first HP review that is an AIM chat with the glorious Kasper, learning that all four friends are Animagi and they created the Marauder’s Map, and then SNAPE! (I believe this is the second AIM review I’ve ever done; I did one during the Twilight reviews for the infamous sex scene in Breaking Dawn. Wow, I’m just now remembering how horrible that book was.) Additionally, this is the review that spawned the term, “potato babies.” FYI: I don’t call them tater tots anymore because of that day.
Chapter 19: The Servant Of Voldemort – In which Mark simultaneously muses and freaks out over the revelation that Sirius Black is actually not a villain at all.
Chapter 20: The Dementor’s Kiss – In which Mark writes an entire review as if he is a dementer in Dementor’s Anonymous. I think this review is too clever for its own good.
Chapter 21: Hermione’s Secret – In which Mark declares that he loves time travel more than most things and is now 100% a fanboy of the Harry Potter series.
Chapter 22: Owl Post Again – In which Mark feels the action deflates a bit after one of the coolest chapters ever, but then Sirius’s letter to Harry totally breaks his heart.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Chapter 1: The Riddle House – In which Mark writes an entire review mimicking the marked change in style of the opening chapter of a Harry Potter book.
Chapter 2: The Scar – In which Mark yells at J.K. Rowling to GET ON WITH IT and stop summarizing any part of any previous novel. Oh, and there’s that weird bit about a PlayStation. It’s still weird.
Chapter 3: The Invitation – In which Mark spawns a rather enlightening conversation about fatphobia because of his uncomfortableness over Rowling’s portrayal of the Dursleys.
Chapter 4: Back to the Burrow – In which Mark falls in love with the Weasleys…again.
Chapter 5: Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes – In which Mark meets the ENTIRE Weasley family, swears his allegiance to the twins, and deeply hates Percy.
Chapter 6: The Portkey – In which Mark has Questions About the Harry Potter World. (I told you I love lists.)
Chapter 7: Bagman and Crouch – In which Mark wishes he desperately was able to go wizard camping. Also, I still stick by my claim that Crouch should have been played by Dennis Hopper.
Chapter 8: The Quidditch World Cup – In which Mark discusses three things: The House-Elf Liberation Front, the Malfoys, and how exciting the Quidditch World Cup is.
Chapter 9: The Dark Mark – In which Mark loses his mind about the SHIT GETTING REAL in this chapter by utilizing all lowercase, ALL CAPS, a lack of any normal syntax, and lots of interwebz speak. This chapter is proof why I’ve never had anything published because I somehow think this is an acceptable form to communicate.
Chapter 10: Mayhem at the Ministry – In which Mark uses Harry Potter to talk openly about privilege and what it means.
Chapter 11: Aboard the Hogwarts Express – In which Mark rages against Draco Malfoy but then Hagrid makes everything better.
Chapter 12: The Triwizard Tournament – In which Mark blabs about a lot of stuff. I don’t know. This review is kind of forgettable.
Chapter 13: Mad-Eye Moody – In which Mark finds another character to latch on to in an unhealthy way.
Chapter 14: The Unforgivable Curses – In which, once again, Mark’s fragile mental state is shattered by the series-changing revelations in this chapter, not least of which is his introduction to Avada Kedavra.
Chapter 15: Beauxbatons and Durmstrang – In which Mark finds another excuse to pretend that Hedwig could keep a detailed log on Harry. What an absurd concept. I must use this again.
Chapter 16: The Goblet of Fire – In which Mark continuously holds back his utter excitement at the mindfuck-y reveal at the end of this chapter.
Chapter 17: The Four Champions – In which Mark realizes Harry’s angst is just starting to formulate into an uncontrollable beast.
Chapter 18: The Weighing of the Wands – In which Mark writes more diary entries as Harry! These aren’t so good. Bleh, I think I was really tired and lazy that day?
Chapter 19: The Hungarian Horntail – In which Mark realizes how fucked up this book is becoming and gets really mad at Harry for an admittedly stupid reason. I love Ron, but he’s actually at fault here, in hindsight.
Chapter 20: The First Task – In which Mark declares Hermione the best friend ever.
Chapter 21: The House-Elf Liberation Front – In which Mark is kind of disappointed in how Hermione’s house-elf obsession sort of dies out.
Chapter 22: The Unexpected Task – In which Mark constructs his first fake LiveJournal entry, this time as Hermione.
Chapter 23: The Yule Ball – In which Mark is exposed to some of the series’ greatest angst.
Chapter 24: Rita Skeeter’s Scoop – In which Mark writes another LiveJournal entry, this time as Hagrid.
Chapter 25: The Egg and The Eye – In which Mark gushes at one of the most suspenseful scenes in the entire series.
Chapter 26: The Second Task – In which Mark embarrasses himself for disliking how Harry gets gillyweed, unaware of WHY that happens, and then totally flips out over how fucked up the Second Task is.
Chapter 27: Padfoot Returns – In which Mark celebrates the return of Sirius Black and then makes another list of all the new information gleamed from this chapter.
Chapter 28: The Madness of Mr. Crouch – In which Mark totally loses his shit over how strange this chapter is.
Chapter 29: The Dream – In which Mark discusses the set up for the next chapter, which knocks the book clean out of the park.
Chapter 30: The Pensieve – In which Mark keysmashes and brain vomits over the shocking backstory to the Death Eaters, Snape, and Neville’s parents.
Chapter 31: The Third Task – In which Mark claims that he hasn’t got the time for Mickey Mouse bullshit when he learns of the frightening magical properties of the Triwizard Cup itself.
Chapter 32: Flesh, Blood, and Bone – In which Mark holds another AIM review with Kasper to help cope with his heartbreak and mind explosion.
Chapter 33: The Death Eaters – In which Mark continues to be unable to formulate any coherent thoughts over the FUCKERY of this story.
Chapter 34: Priori Incantatem – In which Mark merely posts the most heartbreaking quote from this chapter and then sobs through GIFs. By the way, the UP one totally got you, didn’t it?
Chapter 35: Veritaserum – In which two things happen: Mark’s head explodes over Dumbeldore’s revelation and then there’s another list. Look, I really love lists.
Chapter 36: The Parting of the Ways – In which Mark elaborates on his life of TOTES MASC NO CRYING and how he’s come to be comfortable shedding tears.
Chapter 37: The Beginning – In which Mark writes more entries in Harry’s diary. (PS: I really, really like how this review came out. It took MANY, MANY drafts of it to get it just right.)
Mark Watches Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – 5,131 comments
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Chapter 1: Dudley Demented – In which Mark holds an improptu AIM chat with Kasper because WHY NOT and because SHIT GETS SO REAL IN THE VERY FIRST CHAPTER.
Chapter 2: A Peck of Owls – In which Mark is continually impressed by how real this book is right off the bat.
Chapter 3: The Advance Guard – In which Mark brings back Potter: A Play, only to insert himself in it. (True fact: The original version of this review did not have me in it and also was terrible at conveying how rad it was, so I surmised the only logical thing to do was put myself in it so I could have a voice talking about how rad this all was.)
Chapter 4: Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place – In which Mark tries to subject Harry Potter to a dose of his own CAPSLOCK rage. Which is absurd, but who cares at this point?
Chapter 5: The Order of the Phoenix – In which Mark spends a lot of time writing and less quoting the book. I’ll explain why these reviews started happening: I did not have steady Internet at home, so I found I had to write them in Microsoft Word, and then copy and paste onto Buzznet. I learned that it’s much easier to write freeform when I have a blank document instead of a blog entry box. Since then, I write all my reviews in Word first.
Chapter 6: The Noble and Most Ancient House of Black – In which Mark attempts to prepare himself for the mindfuckery that is to come and spend some time talking about bigotry, racism, and eugenics.
Chapter 7: The Ministry of Magic – In which Mark demands to know what everyone’s favorite single detail about the Ministry of Magic is. Also, THIS might be the shortest review yet.
Chapter 8: The Hearing – In which Mark holds a Dumbledore party to celebrate his scene in the courtoom.
Chapter 9: The Woes of Mrs. Weasely – In which Mark tells a TL;DR story about how he came to terms (or tried to) with death.
Chapter 10: Luna Lovegood – In which Mark chooses yet another character to attach himself to.
Chapter 11: The Sorting Hat’s New Song – In which Mark creates a bulleted list system to speak about certain moments in the chapter. Fun fact: I originally intended this to read like an actual set of lecture notes or outlines. I have no idea what it turned into or the proper mechanisms for writing it. It all just comes to me right before I start typing.
Chapter 12: Professor Umbridge – In which Mark becomes nearly catatonic when he is first introduced to Professor Dolores Umbridge.
Chapter 13: Detention With Dolores – In which Mark explains how Dolores Umbridge triggers his years of being bullied.
Chapter 14: Percy and Padfoot – In which Mark elaborates on how unsettling this book is.
Chapter 15: The Hogwarts High Inquisitor – In which Mark has yet another epic AIM conversation with Kasper and discusses SPESHUL ALLIES, horoscopes, hipster irony, and lists all the working titles for this book that Rowling never released.
Chapter 16: In The Hog’s Head – In which Mark is totally impressed by where this book is headed.
Chapter 17: Educational Decree Number Twenty-Four – In which Mark has yet ANOTHER AIM convo with the lovely Kasper. This time, there is much talk about some disturbing Wendy’s videos and the creepiness of Umbridge. There’s an even better session of, “What This Book Should Have Been Called.” Oh, and lot of DEAL/DILL WITH IT GIFs.
Chapter 18: Dumbledore’s Army – In which Mark totally enjoys a momentary reprieve from the madness of this book.
Chapter 19: The Lion and The Serpent – In which Mark comes to realize why so many people don’t like this book, gushes over Luna Lovegood, despises Umbridge more than usual, and then celebrates the return of Hagrid.
Chapter 20: Hagrid’s Tale – In which Mark writes another one of those mock outline reviews and constantly proves that his brain is on some weird wavelength on the astral plane. I honestly cannot recall what the fuck I was attempting to do here.
Chapter 21: The Eye of the Snake – In which Mark’s brain is turned to utter mush as Order of the Phoenix shifts to a much higher gear.
Chapter 22: St: Mungo’s Hospital For Magical Maladies and Injuries – In which Mark composes ‘8 Reasons Why Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Is Fucked Up (Solely Taken From Chapter 22).’ LISTS LISTS LISTS LISTS LISTS.
Chapter 23: Christmas On The Closed Ward – In which Mark discusses how Ginny Weasley is a badass, celebrates the return of a past character, and then wants to curl up in a ball as Rowling dumps so much despair on the reader.
Chapter 24: Occlumency – In which Mark writes a LiveJournal entry entirely from the view of Snape. Truthfully, this was one of my favorite reviews to write and I just imagined it all in the voice of Alan Rickman.
Chapter 25: The Beetle At Bay – In which Mark makes YET ANOTHER LIST about how fucked up this book is becoming.
Chapter 26: Seen and Unforseen – In which Mark writes the companion list to chapter 25; this time, it’s all the things that actually go right this time around.
Chapter 27: The Centaur and the Sneak – In which Mark is overly excited about the new Divination teacher and the totally badass ending to chapter 27.
Chapter 28: Snape’s Worst Memory – In which the events of Snape’s backstory render Mark unable to do any sort of traditional review, so you get one giant brain vomit instead.
Chapter 29: Career Advice – In which Mark realizes that each chapter is more real than the one before it and then totally has a crush on the Weasley twins for…well, you know.
Chapter 30: Grawp – In which Mark writes possibly the shortest review ever? I think this is the shortest one.
Chapter 31: O.W.L.S. – In which Mark relates how his AP Exams in high school are sort of like O.W.L.S and then, surprisingly, makes a list about the remaining two things he wants to talk about.
Chapter 32: Out of the Fire – In which Mark becomes increasingly distressed by the horrific events of this chapter.
Chapter 33: Fight and Flight – In which Mark composes his third outline-style review. You know, it took me seeing this third one to realize why I wrote these. I always organized my notes in college in really absurd outlines like this. In EVERY one of my classes. And once the teacher changed the subject in a lecture, I’d make a new point. When I was moving to Oakland at the end of July, I went through all my possessions and found all my old notebooks containing notes from lectures in college. When I tried to read through it, I realized I had written all of the notes in some sort of archaic slang that I would have completely understood at the time, but is now an utter mystery to me. So there you have it.
Chapter 34: The Department of Mysteries – In which Mark relies on a classic AIM conversation with Kasper to guide him through the insanity of the Department of Mysteries.
Chapter 35: Beyond The Veil – In which Mark has an actual breakdown out of grief. (PS: I still haven’t recovered. ::sadface::)
Chapter 36: The Only One He Ever Feared – In which Mark realizes he has to continue reading, despite the events of chapter 35, because this is just a book YET WHY AM I STILL SAD ABOUT THIS.
Chapter 37: The Lost Prophecy – In which Mark loves the story being told, but hates the execution of it.
Chapter 38: The Second War Begins – In which Mark writes another diary entry for Harry that, in hindsight, is unbelievably depressing and represents a great deal of how Mark feels about the book as well.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Chapter 1: The Other Minister – In which Mark realizes there’s no stopping of shit getting real as he’s introduced to two new Ministers.
Chapter 2: Spinner’s End – In which WHAT THE FUCK WHAT THE FUCK WHAT THE FUCK
Chapter 3: Will and Won’t – In which Mark realizes how drastically the series has changed since he started.
Chapter 4: Horace Slughorn – In which Mark compiles a list of ten reasons why Dumbledore is a certified badass.
Chapter 5: An Excess of Phlegm – In which Mark talks about life during wartime and the strangeness of Fleur Delacour.
Chapter 6: Draco’s Detour – In which Mark finally brings back a Hedwig detail log review to make fun of Draco Malfoy.
Chapter 7: The Slug Club – In which Mark screams that he hasn’t got time for this Mickey Mouse bullshit when he learns what Draco does to Harry at the end of the chapter.
Chapter 8: Snape Victorious – In which Mark’s request for MOAR SNAPE is granted…but in the exact opposite way he wanted.
Chapter 9: The Half-Blood Prince – In which Mark further complains about Snape getting away with everything and then losing his mind at the reveal at the end of the chapter.
Chapter 10: The House of Gaunt – In which Mark discusses LOST, incest, and proper juxtaposition when he learns the first bit of backstory on how Voldemort came to be Voldemort.
Chapter 11: Hermione’s Helping Hand – In which Mark utilizes an absurd outline and begs Ron and Hermione to make out.
Chapter 12: Silver and Opals – In which Mark is completely confused by the narrative because J.K. Rowling is a mad genius.
Chapter 13: The Secret Riddle – In which Mark learns where Tom Riddle came from and relates his own story that represents who he came to be best. I wrote about 90% of this on a flight before my trip to the Grand Canyon. It was one of the quickest reviews I ever wrote, despite that it is also the longest, clocking in at just over 4,400 words.
Chapter 14: Felix Felicis – In which Mark laments his similarity to Hermione but doesn’t tell the most depressing story ever. Phew. I wrote half of a review telling the story of when I first realized that I was doomed to being the third wheel or utterly alone as long as I stayed in the closet, but I was also sitting on a bench outside my tent on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. I looked around at the stunning scenery around me and felt it was just wrong to write about something so fucking depressing in such a beautiful place. So, strangely, this review took three to four times longer to write than chapter 13. Also, this is when I started posting reviews in real-time, as my small trip cut into my normal Harry Potter time.
Chapter 15: The Unbreakable Vow – In which Mark flips out over the gigantic comment war over Ginny from the previous chapter, which he was completely unaware of because he was like 900 miles from home. Also, I have an actual Blingee account. I swear.
Chapter 16: A Very Frosty Christmas – In which Mark praises the subtext-rich info dump Rowling gives him in this chapter.
Chapter 17: A Sluggish Memory – In which Mark learns that Horace Slughorn is hiding something in his memories and (briefly) brings back “The Most Depressing Sentence(s) in the English Language.”
Chapter 18: Birthday Surprises – In which Mark observes that nearly everyone makes a bad decision in this chapter. Incidentally, this is the chapter in which my favorite set of comment threads exist, especially the DEAL WITH IT GIF war of 2010. It made me so happy that I published the next review a day early just to send a thank you to everyone.
Chapter 19: Elf Tails – In which Mark finally fulfills a life goal of writing an entire review as if he is Luna Lovegood.
Chapter 20: Lord Voldemort’s Request – In which Mark learns more about Voldemort’s rise to power and is completely shocked by the revelation regarding the Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers at Hogwarts.
Chapter 21: The Unknowable Room – In which Mark’s brain fractures at how real shit is getting and how much he is completely in the dark about what is going on in this book.
Chapter 22: After The Burial – In which Mark’s brain is completely melted by the method in which Harry obtains Slughorn’s hidden memory.
Chapter 23: Horcruxes – In which Mark has lost all coherency when he learns the horrifying truth about Horcruxes and the way Rowling re-writes the entire series.
Chapter 24: Sectumsempra – In which Mark continues to disbelieve that things can possibly get worse and then freaks out as they do.
Chapter 25: The Seer Overheard – In which Mark is disturbed by the pieces of the story falling into place and realizes shit is about to get painfully and tragically real.
Chapter 26: The Cave – In which Mark freaks out over AIM with Kasper about the unbelievably fucked up events inside Voldemort’s cave.
Chapter 27: The Lightning-Struck Tower – In which Mark is sent into a spiraling bout of depression and terror at the horrifying events of THAT chapter in Half-Blood Prince. I read this chapter while my friend was watching TV on my couch and I am endlessly thankful that he loves HP because I seriously started screaming at the book when THAT ONE THING happened.
Chapter 28: Flight of the Prince – In which Mark’s sadness and shock gets only worse and worse.
Chapter 29: The Phoenix Lament – In which Mark just wants to cry into his pillow forever.
Chapter 30: The White Tomb – In which Mark shares the complete story of his father’s funeral to parallel to the funeral of that one guy. (I don’t know why I am so concerned about spoiling people with this, but oh well.)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Chapter 1: The Dark Lord Ascending – In which Mark realizes that Rowling isn’t going to waste any time making sure shit gets real and is simultaneously terrified that this series is ending.
Chapter 2: In Memoriam – In which Mark discovers Rowling’s ability to make tragic characters a thousand times more tragic.
Chapter 3: The Dursleys Departing – In which Mark bids goodbye to the Dursley family.
Chapter 4: The Seven Potters – In which Mark writes his last review as Hedwig. So I read this chapter right before leaving to accompany my friend on a little bike ride through Oakland so we could run errands. MISTAKE. I was completely out of it the entire time because I couldn’t believe what had happened to Hedwig and I was convinced Hagrid was dead. I SHOULDN’T READ CHAPTERS UNLESS I CAN REVIEW THEM IMMEDIATELY.
Chapter 5: Fallen Warrior – In which everything is fucked up and awful.
Chapter 6: The Ghoul in Pajamas – In which Mark learns of Ron and Hermione’s dedication to Harry while Hermione teaches us about Horcruxes.
Chapter 7: The Will of Albus Dumbledore – In which Mark writes one of his longest reviews and complains about Harry’s genitals.
Chapter 8: The Wedding – In which Mark writes another lengthy review and loses all coherent thought by the end.
Chapter 9: A Place To Hide – In which Mark continues the trend of incredibly long reviews and questions Rowling’s choice of curses.
Chapter 10: Kreacher’s Tale – In which Mark lists five things he needs to talk about and falls in love with Kreacher.
Chapter 11: The Bribe – In which celebrates the return of Lupin and then gets really sad about the argument that happens instead.
Chapter 12: Magic is Might – In which Mark states that everything is fucked.
Chapter 13: The Muggle-Born Registration Commission – In which Mark takes it back and states that NOW everything is fucked up and FUCK DOLORES UMBRIDGE.
Chapter 14: The Thief – In which Mark breathes a sigh of relief as the story finally slows down, but then Rowling introduces MOAR MYSTERIES.
Chapter 15: The Goblin’s Revenge – In which Mark calls out Rowling for having another OVERHEARD infodump, but is at least ok that it’s different than ones in the past.
Chapter 16: Godric’s Hollow – In which Mark reveals the story of what happened after his father died and he entered his first relationship and how Harry finding his parents’ graves relates to that.
Chapter 17: Bathilda’s Secret – In which Mark’s mind explodes because of how awful the Bathilda “twist” is.
Chapter 18: The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore – In which Mark admits he is completely confused.
Chapter 19: The Silver Doe – In which OH MY GOD RON OH MY GOD THE HORCRUX WHAT THE FUCK
Chapter 20: Xenophilius Lovegood – In which Mark celebrates the Lovegood household and then his head explodes when he reads the last line of the chapter.
Chapter 21: The Tale of the Three Brothers – In which Mark holds a much-needed ALL CAPS party when he learns the truth about the Deathly Hallows.
Chapter 22: The Deathly Hallows – In which Mark is still confused by what this book is trying to do and then POTTERWATCH!!!!
Chapter 23: Malfoy Manor – In which Mark writes a eulogy for Dobby the House-Elf.
Chapter 24: The Wandmaker – In which Mark writes a really long review that is sad, confused, and mind-blowing all at the same time.
Chapter 25: Shell Cottage – In which the Great Comment War of 2010 occurs because Mark is an idiot.
Chapter 26: Gringotts – In which Mark slowly loses his mind over the Gringotts break-in and escape.
Chapter 27: The Last Hiding Place – In which Mark writes a LiveJournal entry as Voldemort.
Chapter 28: The Missing Mirror – In which Mark parallels Harry’s loss of faith in Dumbledore with a story from his teenage years when he first lost faith.
Chapter 29: The Lost Diadem – In which Mark celebrates the return to Hogwarts before brain explosion at the end of the chapter.
Chapter 30: The Sacking of Severus Snape – In which Mark falls deeper in love with Ravenclaw and then fumes at Snape. I don’t know if anyone is reading this, but this is the exact point where I nearly lost my mind trying to stay unspoiled. Kasper was already staying at my house for AMERICAN FUN TIMES VACATIONS and witnessed my paranoia and terror and convinced me that I needed to read and enjoy the series on my own terms. So that weekend, I read and did reviews through chapter 34 and then finished reading the last three. I was done with the book/reviews for almost a week before I published the Epilogue review.
Chapter 31: The Battle of Hogwarts – In which Mark refuses to forgive Rowling forever for that one thing she does at the end.
Chapter 32: The Elder Wand – In which Mark’s grief turns into rage and then massive confusion.
Chapter 33: The Prince’s Tale – In which Mark yells at Rowling very, very loudly because of something she does, but then is entirely submissive to her massive brain melting when it’s revealed what Snape has really been doing for seven years.
Chapter 34: The Forest Again – In which Mark writes the saddest sad review that was ever sad in the world of sad things.
Chapter 35: King’s Cross – In which Mark is utterly gobsmacked and befuddled by the re-appearance of Dumbledore.
Chapter 36: The Flaw In The Plan – In which THAT THING happens that we’ve all been waiting for.
Epiloge: Nineteen Years Late – In which Mark closes out his Harry Potter reviews by returning to the fake play format and bidding these characters goodbye.
Mark Watches Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – 7,162 comments