Returning to popular, nostalgic properties is the name of the fantasy game these days, as shows like Willow, House of the Dragon, and The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power all lean on the impact of their predecessors to seize the spotlight anew. Even Harry Potter is leaning on this formula, despite broad fan backlash against J.K. Rowling and all of her associated properties.
Willow’s return, more than 30 years later, via a fresh series that shares a name with both the character and the original, showcases the weight nostalgia carries these days. People are looking for an escape back to our youths, and shows like Willow provide it. The first season of the Disney Plus series is officially concluded, leaving fans to desperately seek out news about a potential season two.
Harry Potter is experiencing a renaissance of sorts as well, but controversy continues to color fan expectations. Upcoming releases like Hogwarts Legacy are stirring up excitement, but J.K. Rowling’s presence casts a shadow over the entire franchise. Fans can still enjoy the original books and films—which came out long enough before Rowling outed herself as a TERF that they remain untarnished—but fresh properties face widespread boycotts. A number of fan-favorite Harry Potter characters never even got the screentime they deserved, across the popular live-action films, and fans are honing in on them even as they turn their backs on Hogwarts Legacy and the Fantastic Beasts franchise.
Will there be a Willow season two?
Willow didn’t rile up nearly the attention of shows like House of the Dragon or Rings of Power, but that doesn’t erase its impact on the show’s viewer base. These viewers, who gobbled up each of season one’s eight episodes with enthusiasm, are anxiously awaiting news of a season two. A string of cancellations—largely targeted at fantasy properties — has some fans concerned, and a lack of concrete confirmation isn’t helping things. There’s still no news on if Willow will return, but high viewership numbers and a solid rating should spell good news for the magical series.
Fans can’t get enough of the Vox Machina voice cast
Vox Machina is in the midst of airing its second season, and fans of the animated series can’t get enough. Even as fresh season two episodes continue to drop, many viewers are looking ahead to what comes next. The cancellation of popular programs like Warrior Nun and 1899 have fans of the genre on edge, and unwilling to invest their time in a doomed project. Thankfully, the stellar voice cast behind Vox Machina—which includes the likes of The Last of Us’ Ashley Johnson and Laura Bailey—is helping to keep the series afloat, and helped ensure that a third season will follow.
These Harry Potter characters never got the screen time they deserved
The Harry Potter movies remain an indelible part of thousands of childhoods, despite the sour taste author J.K. Rowling now leaves in many readers’ mouths. The once-celebrated author created a captivating world and filled it with wonderful characters, some of whom never even made it to the big screen. As fans work to separate the books and films they love from the crappy woman who originated them, they’re remembering the characters who never made the cut. Staples like the Longbottoms, Charlie Weasley, and Peeves added a richness to the books that, in their absence, was lacking in the films, and fans are taking a moment to celebrate these forgotten favorites.
Fans pray it’s a mistake as Mark Hamill likes a J.K. Rowling tweet
J.K. Rowling’s trans-exclusionary tendencies have lost her a lot of fans over the last few years. Few people are standing up to support her, and those who do often end up on the chopping block alongside the Harry Potter author. Recent Twitter activity sparked panic across Mark Hamill’s extensive fanbase after the Star Wars actor liked one of Rowling’s recent tweets. That simple like is largely seen as implicit support of her views—which horrified fans—but Hamill’s history of supporting trans rights gave some people pause. Now the actor’s fanbase is desperately holding onto hope that the like was an accident and not an indication of Hamill’s changing views on trans rights.