Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
— Arthur C. Clarke

It’s often been pointed out that science fiction and fantasy are essentially the same thing. Blasters and photon torpedoes are replaced with wands and spells, spaceships with dragons, and matter transporters with sooty chimneys and more spells. Star Wars blurs the line more than most with its use of The Force which is closer to fantasy than sci-fi (despite George Lucas’s attempt to science-ise it with the woeful introduction of “midichlorians” in The Phantom Menace).

Harry Potter is, to some extent, Luke Skywalker – taken from a mundane existence to discover that he’s destined for greater things. And we’re not the only ones to have spotted this. Of course it’s partly because they both stem from the same kind of story telling that pervades western literature – similar plot points can be found in just about every attempt at an epic story, all the way back to King Arthur, Beowulf and even the bible.

We grew up dreaming of flying swiftly amongst (and probably into) the trees of Endor on a speeder bike. Many younger people have similar thoughts of swooping round a Quidditch field on a broomstick. We just wondered what would happen if our dreams met theirs.

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