I can't claim that I really haven't seen Harry Potter, because the truth is that I did see the first one. I just didn't see the other seven. My mother may have dragged me to see the second one in the theater with her, but I retained nothing from it and she quickly learned her lesson about bringing her sarcastic college-aged daughter to a children's movie about wizards. It's a great way to ruin what would otherwise be a lovely experience.
I think that I learned enough from the first one to fill in the blanks from the rest of the series, though. So here we go: a quick plot summary of the Harry Potter series.
Harry Potter is an orphan wizard. His parents were killed when he was a baby, slain by the evil Lord Voldemort. Voldemort actually killed a whole sh*tload of wizards at the same time as Harry's parents, but baby Harry survived with nothing but a zig-zag scar on his head. This is how you know that HARRY IS SPECIAL.
He is ... THE ONE.
After his parents are killed, the plot merges onto the Cinderella Freeway for a spell (ha! See what I did there?!) as Harry goes to live with a cartoonishly evil family that makes him live under the stairs and won't even let him have his own owl.
He doesn't know he's a wizard, but keeps accidentally causing trouble to the family through his untamed wizardry. Then yadda yadda yadda he goes off to Hogwarts to learn wizarding.
When he gets to Hogwarts, he meets some stereotypes that will become his friends/enemies for the entire rest of his time there. First, the comic relief, Ron Weasley:
Look at him chowing down on all that chicken! Tell me that's not the funniest thing you've ever seen in your life!!! How do I become friends with THAT kid??!?!
The love interest-slash-nerd who always gets him out of trouble:
Hermione Granger, who is only half-wizard -- which may or may not be important.
The evil rich kid, Draco Malfoy:
Just look at that smug sneer. That poor actor -- for like eight movies, all he did was make that same face.
They start taking classes and the whole thing is about as interesting as you'd expect watching a bunch of people attend middle school to be. Harry does okay, and everyone is all "wow you're the famous dude that Voldemort didn't kill." Apparently, this qualifies him to be really good at a game called Quidditch.
What is Quidditch, you ask? Quidditch is a wizard game so nerdy that the players give THEMSELVES swirlies for playing it. I mean, I was hardly captain of the cheerleading squad in high school, but I still want to go into the TV and give all the Quidditch players atomic wedgies.
In a nutshell, Quidditch is magical lacrosse for pansies. The only way it could be worse is if they added a part where they all unleash their Pokemons to try and out-adorable each other. In the game, everyone flies around on brooms and tries to throw a ball through a hoop or something. I don't know. But Harry is super good at it, of course. Because as we already established, he is special.
Oh, he's going to "come and get it" alright.
Over the course of the next seven movies, a bunch of stuff happens again and again. Here are the main plot points:
-- Professor Snape turns out to be evil, but then turns out to be good, but then turns out to be evil, but then turns out to be good
Uh oh ... now I have to draw a goth Mitt Romney. I've given myself no other choice.
This turned out even worse than I thought it would.
-- Hermione, Ron, and Harry remain best friends, and there is untold sexual tension between all three of them. Why Ron and Harry don't just Eiffel Tower Hermione and get it over with is beyond me
I'M NOT GOING TO DRAW THAT, GUYS.
-- Harry battles Voldemort
Pew pew! Ptchewwwww!
-- The indelible threesome gets into a jam that is inevitably remedied at the last minute by some magical device or spell they didn't have until that very moment, and then will never have again
-- Wizards die
(please turn on Sarah MacLachlan's "I Will Remember You" and scroll through these slowly)
Turns out I have no idea who dies.
-- The albino kid is a real sh*thead
"Sneerity sneer sneer" didn't have the same ring to it.
-- Harry battles Voldemort some more
Then it ends, and I assume Harry vanquishes Voldemort. I never really heard anything to the contrary, and I'm taking a "no news is good news" approach here. If Harry didn't vanquish Voldemort, then there'd be fans bitching all over the place and I would have known about it. Probably.
And there you go -- Harry Potter! I just saved you a lot of time!!