A screenshot from the parody 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Weapons'. Image courtesy of Mighty Mopar/YouTube
2020: what an absurd year to be alive! And the latest to join the ranks of its buffet of quirks, somewhere between “everything is cake” and “Binod” is this alt version of Harry Potter making the rounds on Twitter. Someone with fairly good editing skills, a ridiculously great sense of humour, and wayyy too much time on their hands has edited the entirety of the first Harry Potter movie to replace all the wands with guns.
The 169-minute Harry Potter and the Deathly Weapons parody took the creator over five long years to make. They refer to it as “an unsanctioned, licensed content, feature-film-long JOKE with over 175 brand-spankin' new good-enough-looking special effects shots.” And TBH, that is exactly what it is. 169 minutes of all your favourite characters firing at each other using a panoply of firearms.The Tarantino-worthy movie has scenes of Hagrid shooting at the OG bully Dudley Dursley’s butt, Harry Potter blowing up a room full of letters, Hermione's Wingardium Leviosa spell with a pistol, some kids casually gunning down each other while playing Quidditch, and, Hermoine shooting Neville Longbottom in the head instead of the original immobilising spell. And Twitter agrees, the bang-bangs do make the movie a little more fun.
But while the first few minutes are quite amusing, I suppose you could only tolerate the entire movie if you were either baked, or had run out of options to Netflix. Moreover, the gun edits for humour become a little tasteless when you remember how gun violence is at an all-time high IRL and how glamourised guns are in movies. The creator acknowledges this. Do the gun owners in our society really value guns for their use, or just for their sexiness, they question on their website. “We've made it cool to pull out a gun and empty a clip real quick or reload in slow-motion. But at the end of the day, sexy or not, a gun is a machine designed to kill. It has one purpose: murder. Watch Harry Potter and the Deadly Weapons to see how easy it is to push guns into a Hollywood film. See how ridiculous the notion of guns in schools looks. Understand how magic isn't real, but gun violence is.” In the same post, they also attach a few links where you can help out to to support the fight against gun violence.
Harry Potter’s pop culture relevance has been declining in the past few years, as Gen Z had started taking over spaces that Potterhead millennials used to occupy. Furthermore, in June, after JK Rowling's transphobic essay, this franchise has promptly become a name not many want to be associated with.
Honestly, this whacky edit is just what you need to erase her from your memory of the movies and your childhood. Good luck finding the entire movie though—Warner Bros. was quick to take action and get it off YouTube. Follow Satviki on Instagram.