This isn’t entirely comics-related, but I know I’ve got a few readers who are Harry Potter fans, so what the heck: J.K. Rowling just outed Dumbledore.
Harry Potter fans, the rumors are true: Albus Dumbledore, master wizard and Headmaster of Hogwarts, is gay. J.K. Rowling, author of the mega-selling fantasy series that ended last summer, outed the beloved character Friday night while appearing before a full house at Carnegie Hall.
After reading briefly from the final book, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” she took questions from audience members.
She was asked by one young fan whether Dumbledore finds “true love.”
“Dumbledore is gay,” the author responded to gasps and applause.
She then explained that Dumbledore was smitten with rival Gellert Grindelwald, whom he defeated long ago in a battle between good and bad wizards. “Falling in love can blind us to an extent,” Rowling said of Dumbledore’s feelings, adding that Dumbledore was “horribly, terribly let down.”
Dumbledore’s love, she observed, was his “great tragedy.”
“Oh, my god,” Rowling concluded with a laugh, “the fan fiction.”
My thoughts: Well, I haven’t done a great job of keeping up with the Harry Potter series, so I’d also never heard any rumors about him. As a result, this comes a bit out of left field for me.
Nevertheless, I can’t say that I really object. I’m sure it doesn’t really change anything in the novels — it’s a completely extraneous character trait that’s never particularly important to the plot, so it never gets mentioned. So it goes.
Gay characters in fiction have never really bothered me. As long as the character is well-written with a well-developed personality, I’m happy with ‘em, gay, straight, male, female, white, black, brown, green-skinned, or whatever.
Frankly, I’m entirely overjoyed that we’re living in a more tolerant era. Hating people because of how they were born ain’t cool, and I’m still enough of a sci-fi/comics geek that I’d like to believe that we’ll someday quit with the stupid hatin’ altogether.
As Rowling says in the article above, freakazoid faux-religious groups are gonna hate this announcement, but they already hated her books, so let ‘em. I, for one, get tired of people who claim to be Christians while never reading their Bibles outside of Revelations, the first chapter of Genesis, and one verse in Leviticus.
So what are your thoughts, folks? Does the outing make sense for Dumbledore as a character? Is Rowling trying to sell a few more books (not that she needs the extra cash)? Any plans to start burning your Harry Potter books?