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Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis



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  #61  
Old July 29th, 2007, 11:50 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by wickedwickedboy View Post
Imagine you have a disease that you can pass onto your kid. Most people in that situation do not have kids. When they do, they abort or freak out. Well he freaked, pretty natural reaction. But JKR pulled him back into character and he returned. He didn't need Harry to do that - - but it helped him get there a lot sooner.
He didn't even have to imagine.Every painful tranformation must have come flooding back to him.The freak out was understandable.

Personally I'd like to think that Remus would have gone back anyway,I believe he would have.
I must say I found it a little sad that Remus confided in the trio,as if there was really no one else he could talk too.



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  #62  
Old July 29th, 2007, 8:30 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by wickedwickedboy View Post
Remus loved having friends; being liked. JKR said he cuts them a lot of slack and seemed to think this a flaw in his character. I dunno. I don't really think so.
The issue with this being a character flaw is that it probably made it easy for people to walk all over him. Take "Snape's Worst Memory" for instance:
Quote:
Originally Posted by OoTP, p. 645 US edition
"I'm bored," said Sirius. "Wish it was full moon."

"You might," said Lupin darkly from behind his book.
There are a few times when we see that James and Sirius showed in their youth a bit of insensitivity (or at least misjudgement) toward Remus's condition. They saw it as something fun; running around with a werewolf every month made them feel dangerous and special. The height of this is obviously the prank against Snape. What would have happened if James hadn't stepped in? What if Snape had made it all the way into the Shack and met a transformed Remus there? Remus's desire to be liked, which led him to hide his discomfort at the light-hearted way in which his friends treated his condition rather than speak up for himself, would have inadvertently led to disaster.

This ties into the "running away from everything" idea. And while it is, as you say wickedwickedboy, a blanket statement, it does happen much more than might seem obvious:

- In PoA, he resigns rather than wait for the wrath from parents which he assumes is coming to him. Instead of standing up for himself and trying to prove that he can still be a good person and good teacher, he lets history repeat itself.

- In OoTP, we see in "Snape's Worst Memory" that he does not intervene when James and Sirius confront Snape, even though he obviously knows it is wrong. He is figuratively "walking away" from a situation in which he feels he has no power, probably because he is not accustomed to standing up to his friends and is afraid of what they will say to him.

- In HBP, he is turning his back on a relationship with Tonks because he feels she doesn't deserve him.

- And obviously, the big one in DH when he tries to go off with Harry and leave Tonks and his unborn baby behind to prevent, once again, assumed consequences.

Even in smaller instances, we find that he doesn't allow himself to articulate or acknowledge his true feelings about things--he doesn't react to Sirius's death with the kind of fervor we know he feels, he doesn't express his frustration at having to be "among his equals" in HBP even though it clearly upsets him--another kind of figurative "running away". So really, as harsh as it sounds, his ignoring or avoiding of situations rather than confronting them is clearly a running character trait. And while it's obviously understandable that he would do these things, it doesn't mean that it's not a fault. It's the same as saying that it's understandable that Snape would hate Harry; just because it's understandable doesn't mean it's always right or forgivable, because, as JKR has shown us so potently, there are always choices to be made.

But honestly, I think recognizing that makes Remus's behavior in DH less shocking. If we consider that his typical response to uncomfortable situations is to avoid them, then it's easy to see how he might make such a rash and ultimately bad decision to leave Tonks. He's obviously taught himself through a lifetime of submission that walking the other way is something that works: it prevents uncomfortable and possibly damaging confrontation, it saves him from embarrassment, and makes him feel like he is protecting those around him. But clearly, he's never been in a situation like this before, where he's ultimately committed and the consequences of his decisions fundamentally affect the lives of others. So, he sees a situation in which he has done something to potentially harm others, feels that going away yet again is the best solution for everyone, and that's that.

In a way, we can consider him as being naive in his new position as a husband and future father; things are obviously happening very quickly, and he hasn't had time to consider what it really means. So when Harry stands up to him, he's probably having it handed to him on a platter for the first time that "Hey, this is something you can't run away from. This isn't a class that someone else can teach. This isn't your friends who will still manage whether you stand up to them or not. This is your wife and your child." So, for the first time, he's put in a position that he has to confront head-on. That's got to be a terrifying thing for him, feeling so completely responsible for the lives of other people in a way that has nothing to do with the fact that he's a werewolf. And undoubtedly he would have come to this conclusion anyway. We all know that he's an extremely caring person, and no one with the kind of inherent goodness that Remus has could let the idea of leaving a wife and child behind go for long. But, as others here have said, Harry's intervention undoubtedly helped, and who knows what might have happened to Remus and Tonks's relationship if it had taken him longer to get to that point.

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Originally Posted by toonmili
I'm not sure if he totally kicked the habit at the end of Deathly Hallows. I was so distracted my Snape I hardly took on anyone else. I just remember Tonks running after him.
Tonks was "running after him" because he had gone into battle, but this was certainly an instance where he did so because it was the right and necessary thing to do, not because he was trying to give his family the slip again. I think JKR makes it pretty clear at the end that Remus has finally found a kind of peace in his new life. We see him almost deliriously happy for the first time when he announces the birth of his son, and one of the last actions we see from him is him showing pictures of little Teddy to Fleur. When Tonks arrived, she knew that Remus was there; it was undoubtedly a decision that they made together that he should fight.


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Old July 29th, 2007, 9:12 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Credo Buffa View Post
This ties into the "running away from everything" idea. And while it is, as you say wickedwickedboy, a blanket statement, it does happen much more than might seem obvious:

- In PoA, he resigns rather than wait for the wrath from parents which he assumes is coming to him. Instead of standing up for himself and trying to prove that he can still be a good person and good teacher, he lets history repeat itself.


Recall however he said: I almost bit you guys last night. That cannot happen again. I think it can be argued that he did indeed consider staying (it was hard to find a job and he had one!), but that was at war with the notion that he might bite someone and the idea repulsed him. He felt he was doing the responsible thing by going away, not running away from a situation that 'could possibly' work out. Snape's ratting him out was just the icing on the cake.


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Originally Posted by Credo Buffa View Post
- In OoTP, we see in "Snape's Worst Memory" that he does not intervene when James and Sirius confront Snape, even though he obviously knows it is wrong. He is figuratively "walking away" from a situation in which he feels he has no power, probably because he is not accustomed to standing up to his friends and is afraid of what they will say to him.

Note, however, that the pensive scene we saw is not the whole story. Sirius said in OOTP 'we were all idiots...well except for remus' and Remus said, 'yeah but I didn't try to stop you' and Sirius responded, 'you made us feel ashamed of ourselves sometimes, so that was something"

So we know that Remus may have felt he should have spoken up more often, but he obviously did speak to them about it often enough for Sirius to say this (he wouldn't likely have even recalled if Remus had only made them feel ashamed once.)

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Originally Posted by Credo Buffa View Post
- In HBP, he is turning his back on a relationship with Tonks because he feels she doesn't deserve him.

I think he feels that she deserves someone who will not place her in the position of being an outcast and shunned by society due to being married to a werewolf. I agree he ran away from Tonks, but not in a cowardly fashion. He really felt that he was doing what was best for her in that situation. (he was right by the way; portions of society as it was at that time would have treated her as an outcast merely because she was married to him. You heard all the pureblood comments about it in DH).


I agree that Remus was not one for expressing himself in emotional situations (neither was Harry and in fact hardly anyone in the book because JKR doesn't write that way, except for Molly and other like emotional characters who expressed themselves in Harry's hearing - lol - Harry would seem like a cold, unemotional person if we had not been privy to all of his thoughts, in reality he was full of emotion and we got to read them all narrated. We don't get this for the other characters and those who are not emotional on the outside, like Remus, we cannot make a judgment about their emotions or how they react to them. We can only guess.) but we know how he felt. I don't call that running away from your feelings, it is just inexpressive. He felt them, he did not avoid them. He just didn't share them. He had no one to share them with that we know of. But again, we didn't see TONS of his life. He may have had a friend we don't know about who he shared his feelings with off screen. He did not share them with Harry till DH where JKR wanted us to see their relationship and understand the reunion scene better.

So I still wouldn't call what he did in DH as the basis of any norm of Remus' character. He did not run from things unless he felt that by doing so he would avoid hurting someone else or in the cases where he would lose the friendship/esteem of someone he treasured (avoidance more than running away - the latter signifies completely disregarding an issue. The first is dealing with it in a less than full manner). Considering the most of society shunned him, I don't find that at all surprising. Most would become outlaws and move against a society that treated them that way.

The dude was way braver than I would have been in most situations. I fully understood everything he did. I thought he was pulled out of character in DH on purpose by JKR because Remus' past behavior shows avoidance, but not lack of responsibility. Still for reasons you and I have discussed previously, it was believeable that he could reach that point and it was good Harry gave him a kick in the pants so he went back sooner than he may have done otherwise. But all that and later scenes up to his death were more to show his relationship with Harry rather than anything about Remus. Their contacts in the story showed a relationship between them that made sense of his being at the reunion later.



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  #64  
Old July 29th, 2007, 9:27 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

I think it is true, Lupin runs away from things, not from a cowards point of view, but because in a way he sees it as best for everyone. In his mind: It is a privilege for him to have friends, a job, a wife etc. so if he thinks there is any chance of them getting hurt, he runs; it is a very complex thing, I think. Some of the prejudice, from society, has sunk in somewhere.


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Old July 29th, 2007, 9:37 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

I do agree Sweets...completely. I think I just don't like the term "running away" because when I use that term I generally mean the person is acting without thinking. (like a teen gets upset and runs away from home). But I think that you and Credo are using the term more like I use the word 'avoidance'.

So it is just a 'term' thing. We are all in agreement here I think.



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Old July 29th, 2007, 9:55 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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I think it is true, Lupin runs away from things, not from a cowards point of view, but because in a way he sees it as best for everyone. In his mind: It is a privilege for him to have friends, a job, a wife etc. so if he thinks there is any chance of them getting hurt, he runs; it is a very complex thing, I think. Some of the prejudice, form society, has sunk in somewhere.
Exactly. I never meant to suggest that any of these actions were done out of cowardice. Quite the opposite, actually. But it is his motivation behind all of these things that leads me to say that he has a habitually "looks the other way" in difficult situations. In almost every instance, he is assuming that there is something wrong with him. It's never society that is to blame, or the way he has been treaded his whole life. But the fact that he submits to the idea that he is the problem prevents him from standing up for himself.


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Old July 29th, 2007, 10:03 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Exactly. I never meant to suggest that any of these actions were done out of cowardice. Quite the opposite, actually. But it is his motivation behind all of these things that leads me to say that he has a habitually "looks the other way" in difficult situations. In almost every instance, he is assuming that there is something wrong with him. It's never society that is to blame, or the way he has been treaded his whole life. But the fact that he submits to the idea that he is the problem prevents him from standing up for himself.
LOL I get that now...I am kind of slow. I agree with you completely. I just didn't have the same definition for the term you were using. We all meant the same thing.



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Old August 2nd, 2007, 6:19 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Credo Buffa View Post
Exactly. I never meant to suggest that any of these actions were done out of cowardice. Quite the opposite, actually. But it is his motivation behind all of these things that leads me to say that he has a habitually "looks the other way" in difficult situations. In almost every instance, he is assuming that there is something wrong with him. It's never society that is to blame, or the way he has been treaded his whole life. But the fact that he submits to the idea that he is the problem prevents him from standing up for himself.
Agreed. It's been drilled into Remus that he is a danger to others, so he expects himself to hurt them. Sadly, the fact that he expects himslf to hurt others is what makes him do it: being a true Gryffindor, he decides to be noble and protect the people he loves by distancing himself from them in spite of his own misery, and because of his prejudice aginst himself, hd thinks they should be glad to be rid of him. But of course they aren't, and are hurt even more because they think he's rejecting them for some other reason.


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Old August 3rd, 2007, 12:28 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Agreed. It's been drilled into Remus that he is a danger to others, so he expects himself to hurt them. Sadly, the fact that he expects himslf to hurt others is what makes him do it: being a true Gryffindor, he decides to be noble and protect the people he loves by distancing himself from them in spite of his own misery, and because of his prejudice against himself, he thinks they should be glad to be rid of him. But of course they aren't, and are hurt even more because they think he's rejecting them for some other reason.
Well... Being communicative and open is not exactly something we see Remus doing often.

I agree completely that he sees himself as a danger to others... In more ways than one. He feels he's contaminated... Obviously by his lycanthropy, but also, look what has happened to all his closest friends. We see Remus as a very caring, and protective figure... But, always one step removed. He doesn't presume to play the father-figure role to Harry. Everyone's favorite teacher, mentor, psuedo-uncle... Sure. But, he can't get too close to people... He's 'too dangerous'. It all fits.


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Old August 3rd, 2007, 5:09 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by sweets7 View Post
I think it is true, Lupin runs away from things, not from a cowards point of view, but because in a way he sees it as best for everyone. In his mind: It is a privilege for him to have friends, a job, a wife etc. so if he thinks there is any chance of them getting hurt, he runs; it is a very complex thing, I think. Some of the prejudice, from society, has sunk in somewhere.
This is very true. Lupin has always been somewhat of a loner because he knew he was "different". We saw that he was not completely in on all of James and Sirius's doings at school, partly because he had a more conservative personality and partly because his condition made him somewhat aloof. He paid the price for that when James and Sirius came to believe he was working for Voldemort. As an adult, Lupin's solitude increased---during Order of the Phoenix and Half-Blood Prince, we see that he lives with Sirius but leaves for long periods to do work on his own. Falling in love and getting married to Tonks, then having a child, especially with all happening so quickly, was a drastic change in his life. He was naturally scared that his condition would jeopardize their safety, and I think in a way he was unable to handle the commitment.


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Old August 3rd, 2007, 5:20 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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This is very true. Lupin has always been somewhat of a loner because he knew he was "different". We saw that he was not completely in on all of James and Sirius's doings at school, partly because he had a more conservative personality and partly because his condition made him somewhat aloof. He paid the price for that when James and Sirius came to believe he was working for Voldemort. As an adult, Lupin's solitude increased---during Order of the Phoenix and Half-Blood Prince, we see that he lives with Sirius but leaves for long periods to do work on his own. Falling in love and getting married to Tonks, then having a child, especially with all happening so quickly, was a drastic change in his life. He was naturally scared that his condition would jeopardize their safety, and I think in a way he was unable to handle the commitment.
Yes, I agree. Remeber when he was down on himself in the Shrieking Shack bemoaning the fact that he had not passed info to DD because at that time it was very likely that DD was his only friend and he was about to lose his admiration as well. But If you think about it, DD likely told Lupin that he totally understood and not to be upset about it (DD is always saying that to or about people he trusts that do stuff in contrary to him - excusing their behavior with his huge capacity for understanding). Still that would not keep Lupin from agonizing over it all and every other situation that came up in relation to his little furry problem.

By GOF we know Dumbles still trusts him as he sends Sirius to him to round up the troops and be apart of the new Order. But even knowing that there are those like DD Harry and Sirius who unconditionally hold him in high regard, he would still freak out when new situations arose like marriage and kids in relation to his little furry problem. I see it all as a growing process for Lupin and he was successfull in dealing with it all in the end.

I still think however, that it is sad society never grows up in the books w/ respect to their outlook on wizards with something extra (werewolves, vampires, giants, etc).



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Old August 3rd, 2007, 4:01 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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I still think however, that it is sad society never grows up in the books w/ respect to their outlook on wizards with something extra (werewolves, vampires, giants, etc).
Well we are told that, under Kingsley, the wizarding world and its prejudices were tackled: that is was a much better place to live. It is a real shame that Lupin's character did not live to see the prejudice tackled.


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Old August 3rd, 2007, 10:27 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Well we are told that, under Kingsley, the wizarding world and its prejudices were tackled: that is was a much better place to live. It is a real shame that Lupin's character did not live to see the prejudice tackled.
True, true - good point, so maybe there was a good outcome there. Glad you caught that! But actually, Rem didn't have to struggle through more pain while it was all happening. He got to be happy right away and begin pranking the afterworld with his friends, lol. I like the outcome he received. Happy at last and much deserved.


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Old August 3rd, 2007, 11:38 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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True, true - good point, so maybe there was a good outcome there. Glad you caught that! But actually, Rem didn't have to struggle through more pain while it was all happening. He got to be happy right away and begin pranking the afterworld with his friends, lol. I like the outcome he received. Happy at last and much deserved.
Well I am sure he and Tonks would have been happier to have lived and have seen their son grow - up, but it makes no odds: the series is finished, doesn't really matter what happened afterwards.


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Old August 3rd, 2007, 11:41 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Well I am sure he and Tonks would have been happier to have lived and have seen their son grow - up, but if makes no odds: the series is finished, doesn't really matter what happened afterwards.
Yeah they would have I agree. But at least they know he is in great hands with Andromeda and Harry and others. Since James and Lily seemed to know what was going on with Harry in the reunion scene, "we are so proud of you, you are so close, etc" at least Tonks and Rem will see that Teddy is happy and Snogging (LOL)


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Old August 4th, 2007, 2:20 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

At first when I read HarryPotter I thought snogging meant dying.

We never exactly found out Remus's feelings towards Lily. I'm a firm Remus/Tonks shipper, but before, I think around the 3rd book, there was speculation about him having more than friendly feelings to her.

<3


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Old August 4th, 2007, 2:37 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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At first when I read HarryPotter I thought snogging meant dying.

We never exactly found out Remus's feelings towards Lily. I'm a firm Remus/Tonks shipper, but before, I think around the 3rd book, there was speculation about him having more than friendly feelings to her. <3
I love that, 'snogging' equals dying, very funny.

JKR said in her 2005 interview, that Lupin was found of Lily: he never would have competed with James over her and that she was a very popular girl and lots of boys liked her.


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Old August 4th, 2007, 4:44 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

i think remus didn't contact harry before PoA for the same reasons others have said, i think he felt guilty that harry's parents had died, and he was also afraid that harry would be frightened of him or would shun him because of his "furry little problem." i would not be surprised though if he sent hagrid some pics of harry's parents for the little photo album that harry gets at the end of SS.

i was stunned at harry and lupin's argument in the DH but it makes more sense after some reflection. harry, having lost his parents, would not want lupin to just "do a bunk" on his own family by turning his back on them. the fact that he learned that tom riddle sr. had done the same to LV might have had a little to do with his argument of a father willfully abandoning his son. lupin does go to fight and leaves teddy, but he goes to try to make his son's future a better place.

one thing i have enjoyed from reading all the books is that no one character is perfect. my favorite, sirius, definitely had his flaws. DD was definitely not always a saint. and lupin, one of harry's favorite teachers, shows that insecure side of him which prompts him to try to leave his wife and child behind.


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Old August 4th, 2007, 8:16 am
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Pigleto972001 View Post
i think remus didn't contact harry before PoA for the same reasons others have said, i think he felt guilty that harry's parents had died, and he was also afraid that harry would be frightened of him or would shun him because of his "furry little problem." i would not be surprised though if he sent hagrid some pics of harry's parents for the little photo album that harry gets at the end of SS.

i was stunned at harry and lupin's argument in the DH but it makes more sense after some reflection. harry, having lost his parents, would not want lupin to just "do a bunk" on his own family by turning his back on them. the fact that he learned that tom riddle sr. had done the same to LV might have had a little to do with his argument of a father willfully abandoning his son. lupin does go to fight and leaves teddy, but he goes to try to make his son's future a better place.

one thing i have enjoyed from reading all the books is that no one character is perfect. my favorite, sirius, definitely had his flaws. DD was definitely not always a saint. and lupin, one of harry's favorite teachers, shows that insecure side of him which prompts him to try to leave his wife and child behind.
I think perhaps DD had asked Lupin not to be very open with Harry about things. You recall the hesitant way he was speaking to Harry in his office about Harry's parents. By then Lupin would no longer be worried about Harry being frightened of him. He certaintly felt sad about James and Lily's death, but what did he have to feel guilty about? And we know for sure that Lupin knew things that DD did not reveal to Harry until later; he likely asked Lupin not to reveal them either.

I think Lupin would want to have contacted Harry, if nothing more than to tell him about his parents and see the child of his good friends. I really believe DD had a hand in it, during the 12 years and at school. I think he would have been slow to get close due to his furry little problem, but I don't think he would have stayed clean away, it just doesn't make sense knowing how much he loved James and Lily.

Lupin only said so much in the classroom during his chat with Harry - he was totally not wanting to talk about Sirius nor go into any details about Harry's parents - even on a frivolous level. He said "I knew your dad, we were friends". He could have easily said more and not make it appear that they had been 'great friends', but I think DD had told him to chill.

I think Lupin checked with DD before saying things because as time went on he would say a little more and more. You note later in GOF and OOTP, he is much more open about things and even starts to allow himself to get closer to Harry. It is definitely in Lupins nature to not get too close to people due to his furry little problem and take his time in doing so, but this didn't start to happen until GOF which makes me look to DD having a hand in it.

Plus, Lupin kept getting emotional and holding himself back over little things like when Harry lost his broom. I think he would have said more at that point under normal circumstances. His furry problem came into play more like when he hesitantly reached out to comfort Harry, but in the end used words instead - that is his reluctance to get close to people coming into play. They finally got closer, but it took a long time - but the other, just the casual talking in POA at school, that was DD in play I think.



Last edited by wickedwickedboy; August 4th, 2007 at 8:24 am.
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Old August 4th, 2007, 7:02 pm
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Re: Remus John Lupin: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by sweets7 View Post
Well we are told that, under Kingsley, the wizarding world and its prejudices were tackled: that is was a much better place to live. It is a real shame that Lupin's character did not live to see the prejudice tackled.
Honestly, though, complete "tackling" of prejudice is an unrealistic outlook. Undoubtedly there would still be people out there wary of werewolves. Even if laws might have changed protecting their rights, it's extremely difficult to change people's minds, even in nineteen years' time.

And supposing, miraculously, that this did happen, it doesn't likewise follow that the werewolves of the world would themselves be transformed. Of course, it's a huge morale booster to be able to get a job and have people out there supporting them, but they'd still have to live with that knowledge that once a month they become uncontrollable and dangerous. Even in a world where prejudice has decreased, werewolves would still have to contend with that fact.

One thing I would hope for under a new regime would be that the Ministry would mandate that the wolfsbane potion be freely available for all werewolves. I imagine that, in the long run, that gesture would reduce the number of werewolf attacks and even, as generations go by, lead to the possibility of erradicating lycanthropy altogether.


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