On Professor Snape's Gift

March 8, 2018

I'm sorry. Can we talk about "Love Actually?" (SPOILERS AHEAD, in case you've been too busy for the last 15 years to see the movie.)


Why in the world did Professor Snape have to give Emma Thompson a Joni Mitchell CD for Christmas? Outside of the fact that he's a cheating jerk and should have given HER the necklace instead of his side piece, he should have given Emma Thompson LITERALLY ANYTHING ELSE other than a Joni Mitchell CD! She loves Joni Mitchell! Joni Mitchell taught Snape's "cold English wife how to feel!" Joni Mitchell soothes Emma Thompson's heart! But now, Professor Snape has not only ruined his marriage, he's ruined the only thing that could have helped Emma Thompson through that heartache.


Professor Snape took away Emma's coping mechanism in a sloppy attempt to be kinda thoughtful but in a lazy, completely unthoughtful way. It's like if my parents divorced and then, for my birthday, they fired my therapist.


This isn't a diatribe on male toxicity or anything like that. I've just been thinking a lot about it lately, ever since Emma Thompson did an interview where she admitted that her heartbreaking scene in "Love Actually" was inspired by the real heartbreak she felt when Shakespearean god Kenneth Branagh cheated on her. (Ugh! Kenneth! Is there no end to the heartbreak! Don't idolize anyone, kids. Ever. But watch his four-hour "Hamlet" because it's inspired.)


I just think that Snape did twice the damage that fateful Christmas night. He destroyed his wife's heart and also ensured that, for Emma Thompson, Joni Mitchell would be forever imbued with a traumatizing memory of infidelity and loneliness. (PS I know the above gif has no relevance to this article but seeing Emma wipe a single tear away from her sad sad eyes over and over and over again was making me pry open my painted-over window to crawl onto a ledge. So. Jesus Lobster it is.)


Anyway, happy Thursday, everyone!




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