It is curious how the death of someone you’ve never met can affect you in a profound way. Alan Rickman passed away today. He was widely known as a superb actor and generous man. Harry Potter fans knew him as Professor Snape. But those of us who have reread the series and tromped around in our house robes, he embodied Snape in an unforgettable way. And for fans elbow-deep in the fandom, who are Slytherins and proud of it, he was our head of house.
Even out of his robes and with gray rather than pitch black locks, smiling instead of scowling, Rickman was our leader. I had immense respect for him in many capacities. His support for the young actors in Harry Potter was unparalleled. He flew to New York City just to see Daniel Radcliffe in a Broadway performance after the series ended. His dedication to the arts made stories seem so important in a harsh, data-driven world. And he held on to Harry Potter as dearly as fans did.
I raise my wand to you, Mr. Rickman, Professor Snape. Always.