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Old February 5th, 2011, 8:07 pm
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Join Date: 25th July 2007
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

Do you believe that Snape's soul was still intact after he had killed Dumbledore?

Yes.

To what extent, do you think, are Snape's parents to blame for his later choices and to what extent are they his own responsibility?

We are all products of our upbringing. The baggage we carry with us into our adulthood is, in part, the responsibility of our parents. What we do with that baggage after we become adults, however, is our own responsibility. Snape carried a lot of baggage with him, and he wasn't able to unload a lot that he should have.

Do you think Snape would have moved on if Lily had not died? Would he have turned to the good side in that case?

I think he would have always felt the loss of the friendship very deeply, but, I don't think he ever realistically expected to be more than friends. So, yes. I think he would have eventually moved on if she had not died.

Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius?

His love for Lily, as I see it, was the driving force behind all that he did after she died. He did not want the sacrifice of her life to protect Harry to have been for nothing. So, Severus continued to protect him until he died. I've never considered his killing of Dumbledore as "murder." It was a pre-planned action to save Dumbledore more pain and suffering than he needed to endure.

How Severus treated Sirius was two-fold: At first he wanted him captured and turned over to the Dementors because he thought, as did the rest of the WW, that Sirius had betrayed Lily. Once that was cleared up, though, I think their boyhood dislike for each other continued, and that is why they sniped at each other just about every time they are together. I've also wondered if Severus thought that maybe there might have been more Sirius could have done to protect Lily, as he was her's and James' closest friend.

How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?

We'd been shown SWM in OotP, so we knew a bit of why there was bad blood between Severus and James, and, unfortunately for Harry, he looked just like James. But, after reading DH and TPT, then re-reading the series, Severus seems the most angry and nasty to Harry after an incident when Harry has put himself at risk. Severus knew the sacrifice Lily had made to keep Harry alive, and, I think that he felt it disrespectful for Harry to be so reckless.

The only thing that I can think of for his treatment of Neville was to try to challenge him, "toughen him up," so to speak. He went about it in the totally wrong way, but, Severus also knew Neville's parents in the Order, since they were tortured after Voldemort was vaporized. He had not reason to dislike Neville, so, I think his treatment of him was partly out of frustration and partly to try to help him do better.

Do you think he wanted or needed Harry's forgiveness on some level?

Yes. And that is why I think he gave Harry all of the extra memories and begged him to "Look..at..me.." I think he wanted Harry to see him, good and bad, and to understand him. Harry must have forgiven him since he name one of his sons after him. That is, to me, more than enough to show that Harry had come to understand Severus.

What do you think about Snape's relationship with Dumbledore? Did they become friends or was Dumbledore a substitute father figure for him?

I think Dumbledore represented a lot of different things to Severus: a bit of a father-figure, as the one he had wasn't much; the one who offered him a chance to redeem himself when everyone else had given up on him; a man who trusted and respected him -- both deeply important to Severus; a friend, mentor, and confidante.

Do you agree with the author's take on Snape's character as revealed in interviews?

It depends on the interview and the time it was done. JKR did a lot of misdirection in many of her interviews before certain books were published because she didn't want to give away anything. And, in some later interviews she seems to say different things about the Snape character. I really put more reliance in how she presented him in the books.

Which elements do you think make Snape the most controversial character of the series?

His snarkniness, especially with the students. His becoming a DE. His reasons for wanting to vanquish Voldemort. Why he doesn't wash his hair more often. His manner of dress. Just about everything about him is controversial.

What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?

His ability to love was his strongest point, as far as I see. He was loyal, brave, selfless, and did everything he could to carry out what he offered Dumbledore on the hilltop: "Anything."

His major flaws were not being able to get over the problems of his childhood and carrying his animosity for James over to Harry.

If you had to summarize Snape's character to someone who had never read the books what would you tell them?

Read the books.


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