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Monday, 21 December 2015

Not like in the Book

Much outrage over the news that a black actress is to play Hermione Granger on stage. Some people have pointed out there is one quote in the canon that says that the smartest kid in Hogwarts has a white face - an odd thing, I would say. Most caucasians are a kind of pinky-grey, except after a robust Christmas dinner when they tend to rosy. Or the following morning, when they can approach a colour best described as apple-white. I don't suppose Hermione had been on the razz and was suffering when described thus.

But Hermione's colour is hardly relevant to her character. She at no point joins the Klu Klux Klan or, as far as I'm aware, wonders what the neighbourhood is coming to.

This is an example of a dramatised version of a book where the change is irrelevant. Oddly enough, in a rapid dash to Wessex  Dorset and back over the weekend, I was discussing this very matter with somebody (who didn't really want to talk to me, but hey-ho) in Mellstock Stinsford Church. Sometimes, the very nature of cinematography or theatre as opposed to the written word demands a change in plot, scene. Sometimes, the changes between the two don't really matter or slightly enhance things. For example, James Bond in the books tends to drink whisky. Sherlock Holmes rarely wears a deerstalker in Conan Doyles's originals. But sometimes the drama makes a nonsense of the novel. For instance:

Contrary to the recent film of Far from the Madding Crowd, Gabriel Oak is quite interesting, and from the South West of England.

Contrary to the recent trilogy of films, The Hobbit is quite a short book.

In the book, Bridget Jones is frequently drunk. Very frequently.

Unlike every adaptation, Mr Woodhouse in Emma is an annoying get.

In the Bible, Jesus is Jewish,

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