Wand for the Money

Prepare to have a strong gust of comedy wind blown up your Hogwarts robes! We’re having a close-out sale on all Harry Potter jokes! Everything must go! Hurry and read them before they become obsolete!

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“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”
reviewed by an author who submitted his own boy-wizard fantasy novel the day after J.K. Rowling submitted hers.

Oh, geez. Here we go again with this crap. “Harry Potter inspired a whole new generation of young people to read books again!” “Harry Potter is the best series of books in the history of the written word!” “Harry Potter can heal the sick and make the blind to see!” Harry Potter, Harry Potter, Harry Potter!

The seventh and allegedly final book in this interminable series, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” — whatever THAT means — is another 9 billion pages of blah-bitty-blah-bitty-blah about some magical children and how their use of magic always gets them out of magical trouble. Voldemort always tries to kill Harry, and Harry always manages not to get killed. Every time. Seven times now. Borrrrring.

You know what would be really interesting? If there were a young boy with magical powers who learned about a secret society of wizards and witches that exists in a parallel world, and the boy learns how to go back and forth between worlds using a special dragon-like creature called a Nogard and an enchanted music box that his grandfather left him — because his grandfather, it turns out, was a wizard, too! Wouldn’t that be a marvelously entertaining story for young and old? Soooo much better than this Harry Potter crap, which was totally ripped off from “Star Wars.”

Anyway, Voldemort kills Ron Weasley. Whoops, should I have said “spoiler warning” first? MY BAD. Eat it, nerds.

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Despite the heavy secrecy surrounding “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” I have managed to obtain a copy of it. Don’t ask how! I cannot tell you. Let’s just say that if J.K. Rowling is so bad at holding her liquor, she probably shouldn’t keep accepting free drinks from strange Americans. Anyway, here are some minor spoilers to whet your appetite!

1. Dumbledore joins the Navy.

2. The “Deathly Hallows” of the title turns out to be a rock band.

3. Hagrid learns that house elves taste like chocolate.

4. In a private moment with Professor Trelawney, Snape learns that the “wingardium leviosa” levitation charm does not work in every circumstance.

5. Harry learns that Hermione is his twin sister, that Voldemort is his father, and that Hagrid is a Wookiee.

6. Harry accidentally folds the invisibility cloak inside-out and subsequently can’t find it.

7. The Dursleys are hauled away on child-abuse charges — not for mistreating Harry, but for allowing Dudley to swell to 500 pounds.

8. Dumbledore rises from the dead as a zombie, in search of brains. Ron is safe.

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A lot of really dumb people think that the Harry Potter books are Satanic, that they teach witchcraft, and that they’re just generally evil. When I hear this, I always think: Are these people reading the same books I am? And it turns out they’re not. Here’s an excerpt from the special All-Evil edition of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” which was published in secret and only made available to fundamentalist Christians who live in Southern states. After reading it, I can see why they’ve been so upset!

Harry arose from his pentagram-shaped bed, flung open the black curtains that covered the windows in his Gryffindor bedroom, and silently thanked the Dark Lord Satan for another blessed day in which to do his bidding. His classmates were nervous about the possible return of Jesus (whom they referred to as He Who Must Not Be Named), but Harry wasn’t afraid. He’d been able to escape some of You-Know-Who’s most devoted servants, the Dursleys; surely he could escape You-Know-Who himself. Especially if he continued to work hard at mastering the nefarious skills of darkness and Satanism being taught here at Hogwarts.

Just then, the mark of the beast on Harry’s forehead began to itch. That meant Satan himself was nearby, probably with some important message or task for Harry! He had to act quickly to prepare for his master’s arrival. He took out his wand and said, “Manifesto capricornus!” Instantly a goat appeared in the room, tied at the hooves and bleating pitifully. Harry knelt next to the goat, uttered the sacred words he’d learned from Professor Dumbledore just days earlier, and slit the animal’s throat with the end of his broomstick, which he had sharpened to a fine point for just this purpose.

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Finally, when the film version of “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” came out last week, I recorded an interview with Harry Potter himself as part of my weekly “In the Dark” movie podcast. You can listen to that interview here.

Act now! Supplies are limited! Once these Harry Potter jokes are gone, they’re gone forever!

Or until J.K. Rowling caves in and writes another book.

Note the date of publication on this column: July 16, a good five days before "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" was actually released. Which means that if anything I said about the book turns out to be true, it is entirely coincidental, and you're not allowed to get mad at me.

As you may have surmised, these are three different Harry Potter-related bits that didn't work as individual meals, so I threw them into a stew pot and let them simmer together. Tasty! I also wrote a piece for the July 2007 issue of Glenn Beck's Fusion magazine that was supposedly the first chapter of Harry Potter book 17, a decade after "Deathly Hallows." In it, Harry is a washed-up alcoholic. That's probably reason enough to subscribe to Fusion right there.

"Dumbledore joins the Navy" is a callback to one of my favorite old dumb columns, "What You Missed." In that context, it was a reference to the way soap-opera characters never stay dead for very long.

Oh, and thanks to my old friend Randy for his help with spoilers #6 and #8. Randy always has a lot of ideas that are really clever yet incredibly useless, and occasionally I like to commandeer his brain.