J.K. Rowling upbeat as legions of fans desert ‘Harry Potter’ after her transphobic tweets
There aren’t many laughs to be had in J.K. Rowling‘s heel turn into transphobia. The once-beloved Harry Potter author dropped an atom bomb on her reputation last year when she tweeted a series of transphobic comments, shortly followed by a lengthy and bizarre article. She was condemned by the stars of the Harry Potter movies, alienated many of her young fans, and has had to face industry professionals refusing to work on her projects.
2021 hasn’t been much better. She wasn’t invited to the Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts retrospective, the Hogwarts Legacy video game has explicitly pointed out that she’s not involved in any way, and now real-life Quidditch players have announced that they’re ditching the name entirely.
US Quidditch and Major League Quidditch representatives said last Wednesday that Rowling’s transphobia is incompatible with their values, as they have a reputation as one of the “most progressive sports in the world on gender equality and inclusivity,” which means that they cannot continue using anything associated with the once-loved author.
For her part, Rowling doesn’t seem too bothered. In a new tweet, she dismissed critics of her bigoted views as “Muggles,” a reference to the underclass of non-magical people in her Wizarding World:
Sadly, it’s looking like Rowling is too far gone for a redemption arc now, particularly as she’s tweeting deranged stuff about “penised individuals.”
Where this leaves Harry Potter is anyone’s guess. It’s clear that Rowling has done serious damage to the franchise’s image with her half-baked ramblings, and I imagine Warner Bros. isn’t happy. The litmus test will be Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, which is written by her and needs to do better than the critical and box office flop of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald if the remaining films in the five-film series are to move forward as planned.
If Secrets tanks, I suspect that Warner Bros will put the Wizarding World on ice. I’ve got to agree with the fans on this one, as I’d have a tough time enjoying any new Harry Potter project now that Rowling’s new passion is making life worse for minorities.