Let's set the scene...
After thoroughly embarrassing herself dressed as "that girl from The Dukes of Hazzard" [BW&R Note: The Stars Hollow set was the same one that was used for Hazzard County. This is historical, yo!] in front of Emily and Headmaster Charleston, Lorelai is about to return to the scene of the crime (this time, no longer dressed like she's heading to the rodeo) and pick Rory up from what was to be a very trying first day at Chilton.
[Miss Patty is standing at the doorway of her dance studio. Inside, a class of girls walks around with books on their heads.]
Miss Patty: Now, walk smooth. That's the new Harry Potter on your heads. If they should drop, Harry will die, and there won't be anymore books. [sees Lorelai walking by] Now that's how you should've dressed this morning, Missy..
Because The Lorelai's First Day at Chilton was aired in 2000, that would make Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire the "new Harry Potter" to Miss Patty's dance students.
Although generally seen as a children's book, J.K. Rowling weaves such a magnificent tale told within such a fascinating world that it truly captivates readers of all ages. I originally would go to see the movies with my stepmother (a huge Harry Potter fan) and enjoyed them, but as I tend not to be interested in stories about wizards and dragons (my stepmother is the same person who tried to get me to read The Hobbitapproximately 300 times when I was younger), I didn't think the books would capture my attention. When the monumental release of the seventh and final Harry Potter book (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows) happened, I came across a spoiler that had me running to the store for the first in the series. Luckily, by the time I got to The Deathly Hallows (and it honestly wasn't that long as I consumed these books, like... whoa), I had NO CLUE what that spoiler said (point for Bear Allen's craptastic memory!).
The great thing about this series is that story becomes darker as the characters grow up. I love that the fans of Harry Potter as the books were first released almost were able to grow up with the story... as their lives became more complicated, so did the lives of Harry, Ron and Hermione. Although the first, secondand third books get progressively darker in nature, The Goblet of Fire is where the subject matter truly begins to turn more serious. The threat hanging over Hogwarts is no longer just a vague notion or a memory for older witches and wizards, but that threat is very real and begins to prove it's power. This book begins to reveal the reality of life that we are all faced with... life is fleeting. Although children tend to believe themselves immortal, this book speaks to the fact that there is evil everywhere that does not discriminate between child and adult, innocent and guilty. However, it also shows that CONSTANT VIGILANCE (thank you, Mad-Eye) and strong moral fiber has a chance against even the darkest wizards in this world.
Harry Potter is midway through his training as a wizard and his coming of age. Harry wants to get away from the pernicious Dursleys and go to the International Quidditch Cup. He wants to find out about the mysterious event that's supposed to take place at Hogwarts this year, an event involving two other rival schools of magic, and a competition that hasn't happened for a hundred years. He wants to be a normal, fourteen-year-old wizard. But unfortunately for Harry Potter, he's not normal - even by wizarding standards. And in his case, different can be deadly.
Who do I see reading this in the Stars Hollow gazebo?
I was actually torn about this. When I thought of who I could see reading this in Stars Hollow, I instantly thought of Brian. However, I know he's not considered a central character of the show. My next choice would be Kirk... but Harry Potter just screams Brian to me. I asked a friend, she agreed... DONE!