>In reading the Harry Potter books, I always thought that Hermione Granger is one of the greatest feminist literary girls in history. She’s incredibly smart and doesn’t hide it, even when people mock her for being intelligent. She is average-looking, described when Harry meets her for the first time on the train to Hogwarts as having “lots of bushy brown hair, and rather large front teeth” (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone) and her average looks don’t bother her at all. She’s one of the best friends of the hero, who values her for who she is. The Hermione character in the books is an incredible role model for girls. She symbolizes that it is OK to be smart and not gorgeous. In fact, being smart is a huge asset, as she frequently saves Harry’s ass because of her bookish nerdiness. Plain, smart Hermione gets even better as a role model as the serious goes on. In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, all the girls at Hogwarts have a huge crush on Victor Krum, a strapping athlete from a visiting school. But Victor asks Hermione to the Yule Ball, not any of the silly, pretty girls who fawn all over him. Hermione gets him by being herself. For the Ball, she makes herself up, but then goes right back to being herself: “But she didn’t look like Hermione at all. She had done something with her hair; it was no longer bushy but sleek and shiny, and twisted up into an elegant know at the back of her head... She was also smiling –rather nervously, it was true – but the reduction in the size of her front teeth was more noticeable than ever...Everybody got up late on Boxing Day... Hermione’s hair was bushy again; she confessed that she had used liberal amounts of Sleekeazy’s Hair Potion on it for the ball, ‘but it’s way too much bother to do every day,’ she said matter-of-factly... (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire). Awesome, right? I hate styling my hair too! For a special occasion, maybe I’ll go out of my way and try and do something and throw on a little make-up, but otherwise, why bother? What a damn great message to send to other girls – that the hot guy will like you for you and you don’t have to look or act like a beauty queen, ho-bag, or princess. Just be you! So, you ask, what has my dander up now? It’s the fucking Harry Potter movies. I have nothing against Emma Watson as an actress, but why the hell did Hollywood have to cast a little cutie pie as Hermione? Would it have been so awful to cast a nerdy girl with bad teeth and bushy hair? Do they think that the movies would have been a dismal failure? That no one in their right mind would have seen a movie that featured an average girl instead of a really cute girl? It is so damn offensive that I seriously considered not seeing any of the movies. The message from the movies is the exact opposite of that in the book: that only a really cute girl is worthy of anyone’s affections. It’s depressing - Harry and Hermione can bring down some of the most powerful, evil baddies in the books, but they can't make a dent in stereotypes and sexism in movies. In fact, I’d say that casting a cutie actually ruins the movie because there is no fucking difference between what Hermione looks like on any regular day and on the day of the ball:

This is "plain everyday" Hermione
This is "fancy pretty Yule Dance" Hermione

Do you notice a difference? I sure don’t. Damn you, Hollywood! Damn you!

Score: 0 for me and all the regular girls in the world, 250 for Lord Voldemort of Hollywood.

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