It comes to something when Boris, who as we’ve seen has trouble reporting the real world correctly is now making up his own facts about literature. Via Tom Phillips, who was the first to write down what to many of us seemed rather a bizarre set of comments by Boris and concluded, bluntly that Boris is ‘simply wrong’, comes this gem:
And who according to JK Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter novels, was Harry Potter’s first girlfriend? Who is the first person he kisses? That’s right, Cho Chang – who is a Chinese overseas student at Hogwarts school.
Except she isn’t Chinese or an overseas student, the character is clearly written as British, and is played in the films by Scottish actress Katie Leung, who’s from the mystic Oriental town of Motherwell, Lanarkshire. Her father is from Hong Kong. So whether Boris has seen the films or read the books or can’t tell the difference between a Scottish and a Chinese accent or just made it all up as usual, he’s barking wrong here. He could have read this from his own paper, for a start:
Our only clue is this: in an interview with Katie in Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post, the young actress said she had a great advantage when auditioning, because JK Rowling had specified Cho had to be unknown and have a Scottish accent.
Still, ‘Classic Boris’, as Paul Waugh put it in his tweet. Yep, making up his own facts is classic Boris all right, quite apart from the problematic comparison between what Boris presumably wants for UK-China relations (big sacks of money, basically), and what actually happens between Harry and Cho (not much, and then they end up with different partners). A better literary analogy might be famous Londoner Moll Flanders…
Who was Born in Newgate, and during a Life of continu’d Variety for Threescore Years, besides her Childhood, was Twelve Year a Whore…
Yes, that makes a bit more sense.
P.S. Paul Waugh wrote the original Evening Standard bendy bus/cyclist piece where Great Boris Lie #3 started, so perhaps he’s learned by now that when Boris makes the journalists chortle it’s probably outrageous bullshit. We can only hope.
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