Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Half Blood Prince & The Deathly Hallows

I haven’t done much reading lately. I started reading a book while I was in Los Angeles in May and I wasn’t enjoying it.

 

After getting home, by the time I finally got around to starting to read again, it was three weeks later. I just wanted to read something that wasn’t going to test me, something that I knew I would enjoy.

 

So, I settled down to read Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Last summer I started re-reading the series, ready for my trip to see the stage-play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child in October this year, and I have been periodically dipping into it since last June.

 

When I read Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire I wrote that it was the book in the series that really opened up the wider wizarding world. I also spoke about how annoying Harry was as he started to go through puberty.

 

In Phoenix, Harry is still kind of annoying, but his anger here doesn’t feel out of place. He went through a lot during Goblet and so it feels completely justified. His arrogance is still present, particularly in his refusal to fully embrace the Occlumency levels, but equally Dumbledore is frustrating, in his absence, in his reluctance to share things with Harry.

 

The beginning of the book, as you might imagine following the events at the end of the previous book, is pretty bleak, and Rowling seems to know it. There’s a line about a third of the way through where Hermione is looking out of the window and says ‘here’s something that should cheer you up. Hagrid’s back’.

 

And though not my favourite character, my heart did lift at that moment. And I remember my heart lifting the first time I read it as well. Perhaps because of the absence of Dumbledore and the in-fighting between Harry, Hermione and Ron anything familiar is a welcoming sight.

 

Books 1 to 5 of the Harry Potter series are probably some of the books I am most familiar with. Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows less so, mostly because I was eighteen and twenty respectfully when they came out. There was simply less opportunity for me to re-read the books when I became an ‘adult’.

 

So, reaching the end of Phoenix, I had to go into Prince and Hallows straight away to find out not what happened, but to remind myself how it happened. I read all three across the space of three weeks and it felt so good to be reading books that I enjoyed again, looking forward to picking up my book at the end of the day and not wanting to put it down.

 

I even woke up in the middle of the night worrying about Harry and Hermione while I was reading Deathly Hallows.

 

The last three books work so well together, like one huge book rather than just three big ones. They flow into each other well and Harry matures nicely into a character that you actually like, a great achievement for a character that comes close to being the worst character in the series during book four and five.

 

The last book neatly sews up pretty much every loose thread that had been left dangling from the previous six, even ones you didn’t know were loose. Every minor character gets a moment to shine, a shining example being Hermione saving Lavender Brown from Fenrir Greyback.

 

It’s a small moment, but the previous year, their relationship had been left frosty after Lavender went out with Ron, and Rowling doesn’t forget, she tidies it up, even with a small as interaction like that.

 

And yes… I cried at the end. It’s impossible not to.

 

For those wondering:

 

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix scores 4.1 out of 5 (same as Goblet of Fire)

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince scores 4.5 out of 5

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows scores 4.6 out of 5

 

What lets Deathly Hallows down? It’s *not* quite as funny as the previous books, and if I’m completely honest the epilogue set nineteen years later… I could do without. Nearly ten years after first reading it, I feel slightly better about it as a precursor to The Cursed Child but it still feels like a bit of a mis-step to me.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

Earlier this year, I re-read Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and have now progressed onto it’s sequel Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

 

I’ve previously stated that my copy of Philosopher’s Stone was the oldest thing I owned, but actually, it strikes me as I begin writing this review that it’s actually a tie with Chamber of Secrets – getting them both for my birthday, shortly after Chamber of Secret was published.

I remember being slightly disappointed at the time, because CoS wasn’t quite as good as PS (two paragraphs in and I’ve resorted to one of those people who use acronyms), so it seems strange reading it all these years later from a different perspective

Chamber of Secrets shows a slightly more comfortable Harry, and actually it feels like JK Rowling is slightly more comfortable with the writing, flowing a little more naturally, and being ever so slightly more grown-up.

It’s also interesting how much in here sets the tone for later books. The first of Voldemort’s Horcruxes that would play a pivotal part in the seventh book is introduced and destroyed here, but also is the first clue that Harry himself is a Horcrux.

When Harry talks to Dumbledore at the end of the book about being able to speak Parseltongue, the older wizard implies that it was a gift from Voldemort himself.

Unless I’m much mistaken, he transferred some of his own powers to you the night he gave you that scar. Not something he intended to do, I’m sure…

 

If he didn’t know before, Dumbledore surely realises at this point that Harry is a Horcrux and that one day Harry would have to die in order for Voldemort to truly be banished. As a reader knowing this, it may put a different angle on how Dumbledore behaves in subsequent books.

I think the reason I liked it less at the time was because, rather than a new villain, Voldemort was back in a slightly different form. As an eleven year old, it felt like a cop-out for the heir of Slytherin to be the same guy that caused all the trouble in the first book.

Later, around the time of books four and five, Chamber of Secrets felt the weakest, because in comparison to the others, nothing actually happens. There is no advancement of the story. Philosopher’s Stone had a confrontation with the real thing, and Azkaban had the reveal of Scabbers and introduction of Sirius Black, while Goblet of Fire and Order of the Phoenix had the return of Voldemort and the beginning of the war.

In comparison, Chamber of Secrets was a meaningless romp, but in hindsight it sets up a lot of things that come into play in the later books.

All these years later, I’ve changed my mind, far from being one of the weakest books in the series, it may be one of the best.

There’s one thing I haven’t changed my mind about though: Dobby.

Can’t stand him.

Talk about ending on a bombshell.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

It has been eighteen years since the lines “Mr and Mrs Dursley of number four Privet Drive were proud to say they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.” were first released to the general public.

I read it shortly after it’s publication, at the age of ten and it coincided with a class project on creative writing. One of the pieces of work we had to do was write a book review about a title we had recently enjoyed.

That was the very first book I reviewed, and now eighteen years later, I’m returning to it to see how it’s stood the test of time.

That, perhaps, sounds slightly ridiculous, since we all know the juggernaut that the Harry Potter brand has become, but sometimes it’s worth looking at things objectively, and separate of their going legacy and re-evaluate them for what they are.

In short, is Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone a good book?

Ten year old me, certainly seemed to think so. Unfortunately, I don’t have my original review, but I do remember three things about it. I know that I drew a picture, copying the now-iconic face of Harry Potter from the front cover and I remember stating that the authoress (I’m sure I used that word) had a done a great job in setting up for a second – and maybe even a third – book and that I would very much enjoy reading it if and when it came.

Today, it was very difficult for me to read something that I knew so well, especially if I put it down for a period of time. It’s a book I could read without actually needing it in front of me I know it so well.

It us, however, hugely underwritten, when compared to the later novels. While a lot of us might agree that some of the later books in the series (stand up Order of the Phoenix) were hugely overwritten, Philosopher’s Stone rattles through the events of Harry’s first year at breakneck speed.

The moment Dumbledore confronts Harry about the Mirror of Erised, for example, takes place over just a single page, in later books, that would have merited at least a chapter just to that one conversation. It is tantalisingly brief and Dumbledore himself remains an enigmatic character throughout.

Harry has two conversations with Dumbledore in the whole book, once at Christmas, and then once at the end of the book, after the events behind the locked door on the third floor corridor.

No wonder ten year old me wanted more, the book was astonishingly brief, and as such it suffers a little bit for it. The characters are well-developed and the plot, while more basic than later ones, proceeds at a good pace, but there is a lack of warmth and everything feels too streamlined.

Still, it’s a great introduction to the series, it sets some things up nicely for the on-going series (whether those set-ups were intentional or not) and for a ten year old boy looking for something more to read, it’s a great gateway novel.

In reading Philosopher’s Stone, I’m reminded that the series did not become a runaway success straight from the beginning, it wasn’t really until the third book was released that it became a hit amongst adults as well as children.

Back to my question then… is Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone a good book? That really depends on who’s answering. The nearly 28 year old me says it’s comfortably on the high end of average, the ten year old me say it’s the best book he’s ever read. And that’s a good thing, because it wasn’t written for me, it was for him.

I’ll finish this review with the way I finished my review eighteen years ago, with my favourite quote from the novel, a quote that comes my favourite scene, one that sets the tone for the remainder of the series.

‘Ah! Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans! I was unfortunate enough in my youth to come across a vomit-flavoured one, and since then I’m afraid I’ve rather lost my liking for them – but I think I’ll be safe with a nice toffee, don’t you?’

He smiled and popped the golden-brown bean into his mouth. Then he choked and said, ‘Alas! Ear wax!’

Losing my Star Wars Virginity – Part 1 (or Part 4)

I am a Star Wars virgin.

I think I might have seen one of them once, years ago as part of a school trip to the cinema, but I can’t be sure.

With the seventh live action film in the series coming out this winter, and with many of my close friends being big fans, it’s time to change the situation.

Needless to say, this post is going to contain spoilers, so if, like me, you’ve never seen the film before, step away now.

I know much of the obvious stuff, I know what a lightsaber is, I know about Princess Leia – including that she nearly gets off with her brother, and that Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker’s dad.

I’m intrigued by ‘the force’ and wish to know exactly how one goes about feeling it.

That’s about all I know, so here goes, a blow-by-blow account of my first experience of watching Star Wars

00:00 – The 70’s version of 20th Century Fox starts to play. I’m dismayed to discover the film is two hours long. It’s already 10:30pm as I sit down to watch it!

00:25 – A long time ago in a galaxy far away… – the text appears on screen rather plain and boring. This isn’t what I was expecting.

00:39 – This is more like it, the text is now scrolling up at an angle, much more in keeping with expectations. Did it really say Episode IV at the beginning though, back when the film was first produced? I’m assuming not

02:01 – Thee planets come into view and two ships appear and start fighting. The big one unfairly seems to have the upper hand

02:35 – The robots have appeared. The gold one is flapping his arms around. The little one on wheels is squeaking. I’ll remember their names as soon as they mention it. Is one of them R2D2?

03:45 – White versions of Darth Vader have appeared. They’re all shooting rather unconvincing red lasers at each other. The robots don’t seem to be in much of a hurry to get out of the way. Maybe they need bigger wheels.

04:40 – Darth Vader has appeared!

greencrosscode1

05:00 – The gold one has just called the little one R2D2! He spotted Carrie Fisher slipping a little disc into the little one. The gold one seems a bit of a fusspot.

06:02 – Vader has just killed someone. He’s using James Earl Jones’ voice.

06:33 – Princess Leia has just been shot. She didn’t last very long.

07:05 – The gold one and R2D2 have just escaped. They’re going to crash land on a planet.

07:30 – Ah! She’s alive, but she’s a prisoner. Although, she appears to be miming her part. In fact, they all seem to be miming their parts. The soundtrack could be better synced. Was it like this in ‘77? Or is this part of the George Lucas edits?

09:04 – The robots are in a desert. The gold one is still fussing about. He’s gay, right? Makes Kryten look positively butch.

Kryten

10:20 – They’ve had a bit of a tiff, and are now going off in opposite directions. Suspect the gold one’s going to regret it.

11:00 – Oh, he is regretting it. And he’s blaming the little one. Shady bitch.

11:52 – There’s something hiding in the quarry. It appears to be the same quarry that Star Trek always used to use. Some things never change.

Quarry

12:21 – Oh, the little one’s been shot. Turns out the gold one was right, that was the wrong way!

12:53 – These little monk creatures sound like a cross between Donald Duck and the aliens from Toy Story.

DuckAliens

14:04 – More robots? Are all the characters made out of tin? Princess Leia’s the only real one we’ve seen so far. Apart from the bloke that the Green Cross Code man killed.

14:59 – Ah, so they both went the wrong way. The gold one and the little one have both been picked up.

15:17 – Some of the graphics have clearly been updated. It jars a little, because some of them haven’t.

16:05 – “We’re doomed!” The gold one channeling a bit of Dad’s Army there.

Doomed

16:59 –Did anyone else have a black robot at school they had to program called Pip? I’m pretty sure the monks have him now.

17:20 – Luke Skywalker’s turned up! He lives with his aunt and uncle and appears to be a bit of a surly teenager.

18:51 – Gosh, they picked the little one on wheels that looked even cheaper than the R2D2.

19:52 – The gold one is having some sort of bath. He reminds me of Niles Crane.

Niles

20:29 – C3P0! The gold one has a name. I shall never remember these serial codes. I’ll call them Niles and Little Blue

21:12 – Oh, there’s a tiny Princess Leia. Help me Obi Wonky Nobi, you’re my only hope. Luke thinks they’re talking about his neighbour Ben

22:37 – Little Blue sounds like he’s trying to connect to dial-up.

23:58 – Luke’s aunt and uncle seem a bit shifty when he mentions Obi Wonky Nobi. They’re referring to him Obi One, though, so I think I’ve misheard the princess.

25:05 – Luke looks suspiciously like a young Selina Cadell.

Selina

25:45 – One assumes the igloo-like structure is the top of a larger underground residence? There doesn’t look room to swing a penguin in there.

26:33 – Niles has just dropped Little Blue in it. He’s a right snitch.

27:58 – A different set of masked creatures. And one giant thing that looks like the big hairy thing from Sesame Street.

Mr Snuff

28:43 – Selina and Niles have found Little Blue. They’re spying on the sand creatures when one of them appears. Niles actually faints! The big pansy.

29:26 – Little Blue is hiding while this new set of creatures raid their hover board. They’re scared off by a cloaked figure screaming in a high pitched tone. I bet it’s Niles.

30:15 – It’s not Niles. It appears to be Bernard Cribbins.

Bernard

31:00 – Ah! It’s Ben Kernobi. He’s also Obi Won. But is actually Alec Guinness. I’ll just call him Bernard.

32:08 – Selina and Bernard find Niles. His arm has fallen off and he’s being a complete drama queen. I’d just leave him where he was.

33:00 – Bernard is telling Selina about his father. Turns out he was a Jedi. I’ve heard of them.

34:00 – Selina plays with a lightsaber.

34:29 – Ah. Darth Vader killed Selina’s “dad”.

34:44 – The force gets its first mention. It binds the galaxy together, apparently. Suspect the force will end up being love. Or Jesus.

Jesus

35:20 – Princess Leia’s message in full. Bernard thinks about it for a second, then tries to recruit Selina to learn the ways of the force. The dirty old man.

36:24 – Selina can’t fight the Empire, apparently, he’s got work in the morning.

36:40 – “Learn about the force, Luke.” It’s gay sex, isn’t it?

Gay Sex

37:00 – There’s a cockney on this ship. around a Dr Evil type table. And they’re referring to Starfleet. It’s like Austin Powers meets Star Trek meets EastEnders

37:50 – I’m not really listening to this evil plotting. I’m focusing on a guy in the background. I think he was in EastEnders as Melanie Owen’s dad.

Jeff

39:00 – A man who looks a lot like The Demon Headmaster also seems to be there as well. He doesn’t seem that happy, but I’m not sure who he’s pissed off at.

40:03 – Selina’s worried about his aunt and uncle. He jumps in his hovercraft and speeds off., only to find the igloo’s been blown up. Pingu’s been made homeless.

40:42 – Oh, yikes! There are two charred skeletons outside the igloo. That’s a touch graphic!

41:20 – James Earl Jones’s voice doesn’t really seem to fit Vader. It sound silly to say it about JEJ, but it doesn’t sound deep enough?

42:22 – Selina wants to learn the ways of the force. The gays get everyone in the end.

42:53 – CGI rats. They’re clearly a later addition to the film. These extra effects are really quite jarring.

43:46 – Oh, Bernard’s good at this mind-control lark. He’s a bit like Dumbledore crossed with Doctor Who. His full name will now be Bernard DumbleWho.

Dumbledore

45:00 – Even more odd looking creatures in a bit what appears to be a 1920’s Jazz bar. Is this where Selina’s going to feel the force for the first time?

45:40 – The bartender is discriminating against Niles. He doesn’t serve their kind. NOT a gay-friendly bar then. Selina will have to feel the force elsewhere.

46:28 – DumbleWho is talking to a giant hairy beast. Now wondering two things: 1) It MIGHT be a gay bar, 2) Where are the Hendersons?

Harry

46:34 – A chap with a chin that looks like a pair of bollocks has taken offence to Selina so DumbleWho chops off his friend’s arm.

47:32 – Ah, so Harry is actually Chewbacca. I’ve hard of him. Chewbacca and the Hendersons doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.

47:56 – And there’s Indiana Jones for the first time. Luke is looking at him like he’s hoping to feel his force.

Indt

48:36 – Indiana’s not really my type, but he’s got a nice smile.

49:20 – Indiana asks for 10,000 unspecifics. Bernard DumbleWho offers him 17,000, I don’t think he’s really got the hang of this negotiating lark.

50:00 – Indiana is now being held up by a green hedgehog. This is a very odd film.

51:00 – Mrs Tiggywinkle is about to shoot Indy, so he blows her up first.

51:30 – It appears the Demon Headmaster is in charge here. I thought Darth was the man in charge?

Demon

51:50 – The white vaders are doing a door-to-door looking for Niles and Little Blue. We get a nice slow version of the Star Wars theme in the background as they do.

52:40 – Bernard and Luke are being followed by Cyril Sneer.

Cyril

53:06 – Indiana is talking to Jabba the Slug. He looks like he’s part of the new CGI too. Have they updated him, or was this how he looked at the time?

54:59 – I took a quick break to Google Jabba the Slug. He’s not even supposed to be in this film, so it appears that this is how the scene first played out. BUT he was a puppet in his original-original appearance.

55:27 – I haven’t been paying enough attention. Niles, Little Blue, DumbleWho, Indiana , Harry and Selina Cadell are escaping the planet in Indy’s ship.

56:43 – One thing occurs to me during this extended technobabble scene (turns out it’s not exclusive to Star Trek) – why has Selina spent the first hour of the film in a dressing gown?

57:22 – Ah, the princess says the Demon Headmaster is holding Vader’s leash. So he’s just a henchman? Also, the Demon Headmaster seems to report into an Emperor? Who’s he?

58:32 – Actually, the Demon Headmaster looks a touch like Charles Dance. He’s blowing up the Princess’s home planet. It all happens rather quickly, considering that’s a whole planet being blown to bits.

59:26 – Bernard felt a great disturbance in the force and nearly fell over with shock. It’s happened to us all, love. Selina meanwhile is playing a lightsaber version of Pong.

01:00 – The robots and Harry are playing monster chess.

01:01 – Indiana Jones doesn’t believe in one all-powerful force controlling everything. So it’s about God, not gay sex.

01:02 – Except now Bernard DumbleWho has put a mask on Selina and told him to stretch out with his feelings. He’s a kinky bastard.

01:02 – Luke tells him he could almost feel something. He may as well have just asked “Is it in yet?” Way to make an old man feel good about himself.

01:03 – The boys have just discovered the destroyed planet. They’ve dropped out of Doctor Who’s time tunnel right into the middle of it.

01:04 – They’re being dragged into the big black ball. Gosh, it’s enormous.

01:06 – I’m quite enjoying this. I should have watched it sooner.

01:07 – Oh! Just got an extreme close up of one of the white vader’s crotch. Nearly felt his force. Niles would have enjoyed that.

01:07 – PS My DVD display can’t handle hours, minutes and seconds, which is why my timings have suddenly become less specific.

01:08 – Those white vaders are really daft. Although the Nazi controllers in the tower seem to be dafter. At least Selina’s finally out of his dressing gown.

01:09 – Little Blue has just penetrated the mainframe. This whole film is about sex, isn’t it?

01:10 – A thought occurs to me. If this was being made now, we’d be watching Ian McKellan, Hugh Jackman and Zac Efron. I may have just said that so I can include a gratuitous picture of Zac…

Zac

01:11 – Indiana and Selina Cadell are arguing about whether to rescue the princess. Indiana can’t be bothered. He’d rather watch Little Blue penetrate the computer. At least until money is mentioned.

01:11 – Now I’m trying to think who would do the voice of Niles. David Hyde Piece is the obvious choice… but maybe Alan Carr?

01:12 – Charles Dance would play the Demon Headmaster and Darth Vader would almost certainly be Stephen Fry.

Fry

01:12 – Harry’s just roared at a tiny little lego brick on wheels. A black robot has just walked past them. It looks like Niles in bondage.

01:14 – The Nazis seem to have rumbled their disguise. Harry knocks some of them out and a bad laser light fight scene takes place

01:15 – I’ve got to say… these white vader suits actually makes Indiana look quite sexy. That probably says more about me than anything else.

01:16 – Selina Cadell rescues Leia. I can’t help but think he should have kept his dressing gown on, then they’d be a matching pair.

01:17 – The white vader troops on closer inspection seem to be polystyrene stuck to black spandex.

01:18 – Leia’s got some balls to her. She seems infinitely more capable than Selina Cadell

01:19 – Wait – I think I’ve seen this film… do the walls of the garbage store start to squash in on them?

01:20 – Oh, maybe not. Instead Selina Cadell’s been dragged into the water by a tentacle. He’s going to be livid, his hair will lose it’s fluffiness.

01:21 – After a tense few moments, he is spat out by the creature. Probably the taste of the shampoo.

01:21 – Oh! The walls ARE starting to close in on them. Selina Cadell looks better with wet hair. Shame he’s about to be squished.

01:22 – Niles and Little Blue are proper sneaky. Mincing about the ship, everyone just letting them past.

01:23 While Niles is mincing about, Selina, Leia and Indy are worried they’re going to be crushed. I’m not that worried. There’s about a million more films yet for them to die here.

01:24 – At the last moment, Niles thinks to check his messages. Little Blue penetrates another computer, and while it’s distracted by his advances, the crusher stops.

01:25 – Meanwhile, Bernard DumbleWho is just wandering around another part of the ship. The security seems quite lax on this big black ball.

01:26 – Indiana is getting snarky with the princess. The galaxy is a big place, but there’s only enough force for one queen.

01:27 – I’m enjoying the cheesy screen swipes between scenes. These were state of the art back then, weren’t they? They’re all a bit powerpoint now.

01:28 – Selina Cadell is back in his dressing gown now. Still as thick as shit, blowing up the controls to the bridge that is his and Leia’s only escape route.

01:29 – They swing across the bridge Indiana Jones style. Or rather, I guess, Indiana stole the moves from Selina Cadell, since the film was released after this one.

01:30 – A face off between Bernard DumbleWho and Darth. Bernard’s lightsaber expands at the sight of Darth. One assumes he’s feeling the force.

01:31 – Darth tells him the circle is complete. Hakuna matata.

Mufasa

01:31 – This light saber fight is very Dumbledore/Voldemort, isn’t it?

01:32 – The white vaders spot DumbleWho and Darth having a scrap and leave the ship unguarded. They good guys all run toward the ship until Selina Cadell spots the fight.

01:32 – DumbleWho seems to sacrifice himself and collapses under his cloak. You might say he’s submitted to the force. Selina Cadell gets all emotional, but runs onto the ship when DumbleWho’s disembodied voice tells him to.

01:33 – I’m assuming DumbleWho ain’t dead, although they all seem to think he is. There’s still half an hour to go, and nobody else has vaporized at the touch of a lightsaber.

01:34 – Oh, good a space fight. These are always the most tedious bit about these sort of films for me.

01:35 – Pow, pow, pow!

01:36 – They did it! Good. We can get on with the film. Niles, continuing the bondage theme, seems to have tied himself up in a bunch of wires.

01:37 – Worth noting at this point that Selina’s Cadell hair has returned to it’s natural state.

Farrah

01:37 – He quickly tells Indiana that he and the Princess aren’t suitable. We’re supposed to think that he has feelings for her instead, when actually, he’s clearly hoping to feel Indy’s force

01:39 – Fifteen minutes since his last one, Little Blue penetrates another computer.

01:39 – Harry and Indiana raise eyebrows at each other during a Q style briefing when their instructor says the word penetrate. Kids.

01:40 – Q says the word shaft several times, but we don’t see their reaction to that one.

01:40 – Q wishes the force upon everyone (every good film needs an orgy scene) and his audience – who all seem to be dressed like Oompa Loompas, head out.

01:41 – Indiana is abandoning the Starfleet, presumably, because it’s from the wrong franchise, but he invites Selina Cadell along. He refuses, and Indiana wishes that the force be with him.

01:43 – At the mention of the force Selina suddenly misses DumbleWho, until Leia kisses him and he forgets all about it. I’m sure his mind will certainly be back on the force once he realises he’s fancies his sister.

01:44 – They are siblings, right? I haven’t made that up?

01:44 – Niles says goodbye to Little Blue – he’s off in one of the ships. I think Niles is a little jealous that Little Blue has penetrated everything in sight apart from him at this point.

01:45 – As he’s taking off, Selina hears DumbleWho talking about the force. It’s always at the most inappropriate moments you think about your ex.

01:46 – Have I missed something? Why is Little Blue piloting one of the attack ships? They’ve only got four good pilots in the whole fleet?

01:46 – Oh, good, more space fight. I’m going to take this opportunity to refill my wine glass.

01:47 – Darth is mincing around with his cape billowing behind him. I love a cape.

01:47 – DumbleWho’s voice keeps bouncing around Selina’s head, reminding him of the force. Not the greatest of moments to be thinking about sex.

01:48 – More cape billowing. I’ve just decided on my next Halloween costume.

01:49 – I don’t know what he’s doing, but Little Blue seems to be penetrating the back of the ship now. These characters are all sex-obsessed.

01:49 – Darth has stopped billowing and is now flying an attack ship. I know he’s one of the henchmen, but you would think in a ship that size, he would send out a few more minions first?

01:53 – This space fight is going on too long. Nobody’s talked about the force and nobody’s penetrated anything in ages.

01:54 – Oh! Little Blue’s doing some more penetrating. It seems to be helping.

01:55 – The Demon Headmaster looks worried. I’ve just realised he’s probably got reason to be. Darth’s not on the ship, so the big black ball – along with Charles Dance – will get blown up. Darth gets to return in another film. A bit like the Borg Queen.

01:55 – “Use the force, Luke.” At last. It’s been ages since anyone had a bit of force in them – obviously not including Little Blue.

01:56 – No sooner does Selina start using the force and Indiana turns up. Major power bottom.

01:57 – So he uses the force and his big ball explodes? No comment.

01:58 – Niles offering to be an organ donor for Little Blue. Yeah, we all know which organ he’d like to donate.

01:58 – There appears to be some sort of ceremony. They’ve all got different hair. Even Harry seems to have had at it with a bottle of Loreal.

01:59 – Niles has buffed himself up as well. He’s the robot equivalent of a Muscle Mary now. I think this is his civil partnership with Little Blue

02:00 – They all turn to the camera – I mean, the audience, and grin. Half expecting them to take a bow.

02:00 – The credits roll. My first experience of Star Wars is over. Bit disappointed that DumbleWho didn’t come back to life. And the ending seemed a bit ambiguous. I mean, I know there’s more films – but did the audience back in 1977?

Overall, I quite enjoyed it. Which, I guess is lucky, since I’m committed to watching the other five films. It’s hard for me to imagine watching this and not knowing ANYTHING about it – it’s had such a massive cultural impact, that even though I’d never seen it before, I knew some of – if not all – the main plot points.

Next week – I’ll watch Episode V, I’m looking forward to it.