The Cursed Child had it's official premiere on the West End yesterday and the script book is out today, which means I can finally talk about it! Yay! I saw the show last Saturday (July 23rd) and I have a LOT to say about it.
I've already done a spoiler free review which gave more thoughts about the actual production of the play (spoiler: I loved it), so this post is really just going to focus on the story itself. That means it will be full of spoilers, and I will no longer be #keepthesecrets-ing. Think carefully about whether you want to read this.
Disclaimer: I saw a preview performance of the show, so some aspects may have changed in the final production.
Disclaimer #2: This is just my opinion. You might have a different one, and you can tell me about it in the comments!
This post will only discuss Part One because I could basically rant about this forever. Click to see my thoughts on Part Two.
SPOILER WARNING! SPOILER WARNING! READ AT YOUR OWN RISK! SPOILERS!!!!!!!!
I'm going to try and do this in order of when it happened, but it's been a week and my memory's a bit fuzzy. Stick with me! Also, this is totally not a full plot summary. I'm just trying to structure my thoughts a little bit.
So, we start at Kings Cross station with a scene that was basically the epilogue from the books, just without Teddy Lupin. I really wanted to see him and I was kind of disappointed he never showed up (this is going to become a theme, by the way) but that's really not important. Harry, Ginny, Hermione and Ron wave their kids off to Hogwarts, and instantly I felt myself falling back into the wizarding world. This was one of the scenes I felt really captured the feel of the books and it made me ridiculously emotional. Then came the sorting ceremony, which was so exciting for me as someone who had no idea which houses the characters were going to be in. Albus being in Slytherin was so predictable but still made me really happy, though I was disappointed that nobody was in Ravenclaw. WE NEED MORE RAVENCLAW'S, JO! Also, I would have sorted Scorpius into Hufflepuff or maybe Ravenclaw not Slytherin, but I guess we were just following tradition.
Then it skipped a few years, which really confused me for about five minutes before I actually figured out what was happening. It was here that we found out Scorpius' mother had died, and I cried for the first time! Who knew I'd get so emotionally invested in the Malfoy family? I loved Scorpius SO much (more on that in the spoiler free review), and I felt more sympathetic towards Draco than I ever had before. I actually cried over Draco as well when he was talking about how he was jealous of the Golden Trio's friendship, which was something I never thought would happen. Have I just converted to Team Draco?
Anyway, it's the night before Albus leaves for his fourth year of Hogwarts and he has this huge fight with Harry that actually made me tear up again. Where did that blanket come from, though? I feel like something that had that much emotional significance to Harry would have been mentioned before. I don't know. For some reason this propels Albus to decide to travel back in time and save Cedric Diggory after overhearing literally ONE CONVERSATION about it, which didn't really make much sense to me. Over reaction, much? I never really cared about Cedric Diggory, to be honest, and I was really confused about why they decided to centre half the story around him. Cedric Diggory is irrelevant.
This lead to a really confusing scene for me which was the bit with the trolley lady. I get that she was trying to keep them on the Hogwarts Express and everything (which is sensible, really. Who thought it was a good idea to jump off a moving train?) but why the heck did her fingers extend? Maybe I missed something, but I was so confused about that. This scene continued references to both the Marauders and the Weasley twins, which made me tear up again! I was basically an emotional wreck by this point, and I was only half way through Part One.
Albus and Scorpius go to a retirement home (which was a really fun scene to watch) and talk to Amos Diggory and his "neice", Delphie Diggory. Delphie Diggory, if we can even call her that, is probably my least favourite part of the show. At this point I just thought she was annoying and pointless, but it got so, SO much worse. I'll leave that rant for later. I loved the scene that followed with Albus, Scorpius and Delphie sneaking into the Ministry disguised as the old Trio, mostly because it was hilarious and it really felt like a classic Harry Potter scene to me with the Polyjuice potion and the riddles and everything. I sort of want a bookshelf that eats people. Is that weird?
I'm going to take this opportunity to say just how much I love the fact that Hermione Granger is the Minister for Magic. I feel so freaking proud of her (which sounds silly, but anyway) and she was so strong and badass and I cried just hearing about it. I also want to say that Minevra McGonagall as the Headmistress of Hogwarts is a fabulous thing and her sass made this play a hundred times better. YAY FOR WOMEN IN POSITIONS OF POWER! McGonagall was one of the cameos I really loved, and her saying "I solemnly swear I was up to no good" was one of my favourite moments in the show. Okay, back to the plot.
Act One ends with the trio (I HATE calling them that. There is no way they could be a new trio. NO WAY.) using the time turner for the first time, and by then I was already having doubts about the whole time travel thing. I have so many questions that weren't answered about how it all actually worked and it's so frustrating that it wasn't thought out or explained as well as I wanted. Like, how do you know how many times to turn this new time turner? It can't be one turn for one hour because that would take FOREVER, but it can't be one turn per year because they were going to really specific dates. I don't even know.
INTERVAL TIME! This is where I'm going to talk about some random things I didn't get chance to mention before but I have to rant about. One thing I was seriously disappointed in was Rose Granger-Weasley, or rather the lack of Rose Granger-Weasley. I was totally prepared for her to be my favourite character, and from the marketing of the show I really thought she was going to be a big part of the show. Instead she was in, like, two scenes and all she did was judge Albus and Scorpius for being in Slytherin. This is NOT how Hermione Granger would raise her daughter to treat people. There was such a good opportunity to have a strong black girl as a main character in the Potter universe, and they completely blew it. I am so pissed off.
Anyway! Act Two sent us back to Goblet of Fire (which is my favourite of the books, so I was actually quite happy with that) where Scorpius and Albus decided to sabotage Cedric in the first task. This was all fun (although I wanted to actually see a dragon. Dragons make everything better), but then they travel back to the normal timeline and realise they've managed to completely remove Rose and Hugo from existence. Good job! This is where I started whispering swear words under my breath, much to the annoyance of my sister, because OH CRAP HERMIONE AND RON AREN'T MARRIED! Also in this part was a little reference to Remus' classic line about eating chocolate to feel better, which made me cry a lot. (Remus Lupin is my favourite character, if you didn't know, and I am extremely emotional about everything about him). There was a little scene with Hermione and Ron on the staircase that also made me cry, and I think it's so adorable (and surprising, considering what J.K. Rowling has said in the past) that even in the two timelines where they weren't married there was at least one scene that showed their relationship. Hermione as a strict teacher pissed me off since I thought it was so far away from the character we knew, and I thought there were some really sexist connotations that she was bitter and angry because she wasn't in a relationship. I'm probably thinking too far into that.
I can't really remember what happened then, but Albus and Scorpius ended up back at the Triwizard Tournament to try and fix everything they'd fucked up. They went swimming, or something? I really can't remember this part and I don't know why. What I do remember (and will take this as a random opportunity to talk about) is that Scorpius and Albus have the most adorable friendship and I shipped the hell out of them. I just wanted them to kiss, damn it! The two actors had such brilliant chemistry and every scene with them together was so cute I couldn't handle it. Again, I think J.K. Rowling really missed an opportunity to have some great representation by including a canon gay relationship and again I am mad.
Then we got to the end of Part One, also known as the bit where I gasped constantly for a whole five minutes. I didn't take my hands away from my mouth for, like, an hour after the first show ended. There were dementors everywhere (including one that came right out over the audience and scared the crap out of my sister) and UMBRIDGE came out to literally ruin everything again. I hate her. I hate her so much. We find out Harry is dead and it's Voldemort day (which I still can't take seriously) and, worse of all, Umbridge is Headmistress of Hogwarts. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I knew it was going to be sorted out in the end, but that didn't stop me from going into a state of shock and panic. It felt like such a cruel ending, and I am SO glad I only had to wait two hours to see Part 2.
I ship Albus and Scorpius to the ends of the Earth, Hermione as the Minister of Magic is perfect, Delphie Diggory was already getting on my nerves and the ending was just cruel. At this point I wasn't too mad about the plot, though I really need some explanation about how that bloody time turner worked and why the hell Albus even thought it was a good idea to go back in time to save Cedric Diggory. Also, ROSE GRANGER-WEASLEY DESERVED BETTER!
Well, that got long. Oops! If you read all of this then I love you.