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Fridge: Harry Potter

Warning: Marked and Unmarked spoilers throughout the page. Read at your own discretion.


Fridge Brilliance

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     General Part 1 
  • Look at the list and answer the question that comes after: Black hair, top of their classes, arrogant, talented/powerful wizards, fell in love with Lily Evans, redeemed themselves because of their love for Lily Evans, killed by Voldemort, and died protecting Harry Potter. Now, is the list talking about James Potter or Severus Snape?
  • Horcruxes = piece of soul + container (+ very evile magick). The piece of soul depends on its container for survival, and thus the Horcrux is really, really difficult to maim or destroy. Remember how no matter what the trio did, they couldn't harm the locket or the cup without dark magic? WELL. That explains how Harry got out of all of those life-threatening situations alive, right? Harry could break his leg or almost drown or fall fifty feet in the air or get otherwisely severely injured, and the book would just carry on with the action. It's because he had special protection as a Horcrux.
  • Why Harry wasn't completely dysfunctional and maladjusted? The kid was bullied, criminally neglected, and belittled for his entire childhood. The care he got from his parents during the first year of his life couldn't have possibly been enough to cancel out the cruelty the Dursleys showed him. By all rights, he should not have been as kind, fair-minded, or even as sane as he is. Lily's protective magic which she cast when she died for him must also extend to his mind. He isn't just protected from physical damage, he's protected from psychological damage!
  • How did Fred and George know how to use the Marauder's Map? They were most likely magically gifted to figure out what kind of enchantments that had been applied to it, thus figuring out exactly how it works. They possibly were able to recognize its potential when they first laid eyes on it
  • The page of wand wood lore just adds a whole slew of this. For instance, Holly wands often choose wizards engaged in dangerous or spiritual quests.
  • Beware, lots of unmarked horcrux spoilers to follow: The inconsistency of Harry's scar is confusing. His glimpsing Voldemort's plans from a distance in book four when the only thing that happens in book one is some pain? Not to mention book seven, where it steadily gets harder for even Voldemort to block the connection, to the point where Harry only has to close his eyes during the final battle to view what Voldemort's doing, as opposed to book five where it only happened when Harry was asleep. However, the strength of the connection corresponds with the destruction of the horcruxes. Or, more accurately, the ratio of Voldemort's soul held by Harry versus held by Voldemort himself.
    • Book One: Harry only feels minor pain when in close proximity to Voldemort.
    • Book Two: Tom Riddle's diary is destroyed, strengthening the connection.
    • Book Four: Voldemort makes Nagini into a Horcrux and so holds less of his own soul. Harry gets a glimpse mid-process and start seeing more of Voldemort's mind.
    • Book: Five: Harry can now glimpse Voldemort's thoughts and actions while asleep. Voldemort can send false messages, but in the end starts employing Occlumency to block Harry out.
    • Book Six: Another horcrux is destroyed.
    • Book Seven: Voldemort can't block Harry out of his mind out anymore. Harry now glimpses Voldemort's and even memories while awake, though only when Voldemort's feeling strong emotions. The locket and the cup are destroyed, and during the final battle all Harry has to do to activate Voldy-vision is basically just close his eyes. Voldemort is completely unaware of this, and has no control over it. This suggests that as the horcruxes are destroyed, Harry's control over the connection gets stronger and Voldemort's gets weaker.
  • In the first book, it's stated that Draco reminds Harry of Dudley. The comparison makes sense - both kids are heartless, spoiled-brat bullies with lackeys who verbally and physically abuse everyone and get away with it. But as the series commences, the parallels end up going further than that. Both get just barely redeemed and turn out to not be all bad. Both have mothers (with flower names) who turn out to truly care about them and not be all bad themselves (each of them has issues with her sister). Neither Draco nor Dudley's fathers get redeemed at all. The difference? The Dursleys (mostly Vernon) are intent on remaining a hundred-percent muggle, not acknowledging the magical world in the slightest, and they hate all wizards and regard them as freaks. The Malfoys (mostly Lucius) want to kill off all the Mudbloods, whom they regard as utterly worthless, and place wizards in control. The families are perfect mirror images of one another, but on opposing sides.
  • It's bothering how awful the "Dursley" sections of each book were, compared to the chapters in-between. The Dursleys seemed to be underdeveloped, derivative, irritating, and ridiculously lacking in redeeming qualities. Why J.K. couldn't have made them slightly more sympathetic—or at least cranked their villainy up into so that they'd be delicious, fascinating, shudder-worthy "love-to-hate" types. But: these are people who have spent their whole lives struggling to be boring. And it's working very well. Harry feels just the same way we do.
  • Neville spent the best part of six years being told that he wasn't brave enough to belong in Gryffindor, and we know it hit home. We also know that Godric Gryffindor's sword presents itself to any member of its House it views as worthy of receiving it, going with Dumbledore's statement that "help will always be given at Hogwarts to those that need/deserve it". During the first part of Book Seven Neville becomes the leader of an underground resistance against the Death Eaters, taking several level in badass as he goes: this basically involves him standing up to Snape - the man whose form his Boggart used to take (i.e. his greatest fear). He then proceeds to talk down VOLDEMORT HIMSELF and fight half of the Battle of Hogwarts armed with only a sword. To reiterate - he pretty much brought a knife to a gunfight, albeit a magical one. The Fridge Brilliance comes in when you remember him standing up to the Trio back in Book One, and realise that Neville has been so brave, and so deserving of the Sword, all along. It's the quote from Dumbledore that it "shows great courage to stand up to our friends and not just our enemies" that is evidence to him always being brave. Not to mention that that's exactly what Dumbledore felt he hadn't been able to do in regards to Grindelwald.
  • Headscratchers has an entry asking why Dumbledore never gave Snape an attitude adjustment, despite the fact that he very obviously needed one. JKR said it's because Dumbledore believes "that people in authority aren't always good" is a lesson the students have to learn. That's not the brilliant part; the brilliance comes in when you realize that every single book has featured at least one person at Hogwarts far, far worse than Severus Snape. First year, there was Quirrel, who has Tom Riddle stuck to the back of his head. Second year, we have Lockhart, an arrogant buffoon who can't teach at all (say whatever you want about Snape, he is at least more competent than Lockheart). Third year, we get introduced to the man who actually sold the Potters to Voldemort, Peter Pettigrew, a true coward and murderer. Year four has Karkaroff (coward) and Fake Moody, plus Cornelius Fudge, who refused to believe that Voldemort was back. Year Five: Umbridge's period of misrule, 'nuff said. Year six, Draco Malfoy joined the Death Eaters and cooked up at least two Russian Roulette-esque plans to kill Dumbledore, which nearly resulted in the deaths of Katie Bell and Ron Weasley. Oh, and he let other Death Eaters, like Bellatrix Lestrange and Fenrir Greyback, into the castle, too. Draco, ya little shit! And in Year Seven, the Carrows become the Muggle Studies and Dark Arts teachers, while Snape is made Headmaster and actually spends all of his time and energy making sure the Carrows can't torture and kill the students who defy them, and at the end of the book, Lord Voldemort himself enters Hogwarts. Bow to the brilliance.
  • Resident Slytherin bitch Pansy Parkinson is always described as being "pug-faced" by Harry in the books. Pugs are a kind of dog. In other words, Pansy Parkinson has a bitchy face!
  • It always seemed like somewhat weak writing that Harry never showed any curiosity about his family or the wider wizarding world, requiring Hermione to explain everything to him (and us) at every turn. It may seem Harry wasn't too bright but the Dursleys spent a decade beating any curiosity out of him and never answered his questions honestly. He's not dumb, he just still hasn't gotten over that part of his horrible childhood, poor kid.
  • Voldemort's NAME, for heaven's sake. In French, "vol-" means "escape," "-de-" means "from" and "-mort" means "death." His entire name is a mashup of the phrase "escape from death." Alternatively, in Latin, "vol" means "wish", "de" means "of", and "mort" means "death". So in Latin, Voldemort is "death wisher" or "one who wishes death". Tie that in with the French translation meaning "escape from death", and J.K. Rowling is a genius on so many levels. "Vol" can also be thief, or theft, too; both stealing from death, and stealing death itself. You can really tell J.K. Rowling was a languages scholar.
  • "I Am Lord Voldemort" fits neatly into the anagram "Tom Marvolo Riddle", with a last name that explicitly states the significance of the name - it's a riddle! The woman is a genius!
  • Remus Lupin = werewolf = Remus was one of the two wolf-raised brothers who founded Rome, and Lupin from lupīnus, the Latin for wolf.
  • Dolores Umbridge: "Dolor" is Latin for pain or grief, which she gives both out in large quantities. "Umbrage" means taking offense, annoyance and displeasure. Everyone is annoyed and displeased by her tyrannical nature.)
  • In every book, at least one person mentions that Harry looks incredibly like his father, but has his mother's eyes. Dumbledore comments that while looking like his father, he is more like his mother in his heart. This proved true the old saying: The eyes are windows to the soul.
  • It's bothersome that Slytherin House is painted as almost unequivocally evil, but: That's not bad writing, that's BRILLIANT writing! See, we're explicitly told that Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, and Ravenclaw are the "good" houses, so we just expect that anyone from those houses will do the right thing. Slytherin, on the other hand, has a reputation for churning out Dark witches and wizards like a machine, so we just expect anyone from that house to be evil. So when a Slytherin does something noble (i.e., Regulus Black stealing one of Voldemort's Horcruxes to try and destroy it) and a Gryffindor/Ravenclaw/Hufflepuff does something horrible (i.e., Peter Pettigrew turning James and Lily over to Voldemort), it's that much more of a shock. It's proof of Dumbledore's statement: "It is not our abilities, but our choices, that determine who we really are."
  • The whole Statue Of Secrecy-thing never made sense. If Muggles can't use magic, it surely wouldn't hurt anyone if they tried? But there’s an interview where Jo said that Muggles couldn't use magic, but if they happened to pick up a recently used wand, it could suddenly "explode" with magic. A Muggle who had heard about magic would probably try to use it. If a Muggle picked up a recently used wand, they could damage themselves and people around them.
  • Consider the contemptible treatment of Muggles even by the best of the wizarding world. At best, Muggles are seen as sort of amusing children or even intelligent pets, but almost never are they seen as equals, or even remotely intelligent. (Another smaller Fridge Brilliance: The Muggle Prime Minister actually remarks on this in the sixth book, heavily disliking Fudge's condescending attitude each time he appears in the PM's office, despite the fact that he, Fudge, is not exactly competent himself.) It's a great cultural tidbit because it's so imperialistic. The real-life Europe — and by extension Muggle Europe in HP — probably had this very same attitude towards the indigenous populations of the countries they colonized. So in that sense, one could argue that this plot device shows that Muggle culture and wizarding culture have that much more in common with each other — and neither group even realizes it. JK herself even said that Harry leaves the Muggle world and finds that the exact same problems exist in the wizarding world. It definitely shows that whatever wizards might think about Muggles, they're more connected to them than they know.

    General Part 2 
  • Cruciatus is the root for the word "Excruciating" — an appropriate adjective for the curse's effects.
  • Why do the Wizards live in castles, and write, eat, and dress as if they were living in the middle ages? Because they always had magic, so their world never needed to evolve technologically like ours did.
  • Almost every single character trait exhibited by Harry can be linked back to his time at the Dursleys: He's a good seeker because he was malnourished enough to be small and fast, and had gained excellent reflexes from constantly dodging their swings at him. He wants to protect and help others, because no-one helped him. He hates bullies, like Malfoy, because he was bullied. He doesn't try at school, because he was never encouraged at home, and in fact, was probably punished if he did better than Dudley. And so on.
  • Films-only, and possibly accidental. In the last film, Voldemort, Bellatrix, and Nagini all die and shatter into small pieces. With Bellatrix that's because of the weird... liquid nitrogen spell that Molly Weasley used. With Nagini and Voldemort, it could call back to the very first movie. Remember Quirrel when he touched Harry. Instead of burning, like in the books, Quirrel actually crumbled into ash, piece by piece. Scary, yes, but if that's a deliberate callback, that's pretty cool.
  • Look at the cover of Philosopher/Sorcerer's Stone. Look at the cover of Deathly Hallows. Stone has a sunset in the background. DH has a sunrise in the background. Symbolically, you'd think it should be the other way around, until you realize every end is a beginning and vice-versa. The end of the Marauders is the beginning of Harry Potter. The end of his story is a new beginning for the wizarding world.
    • Another way to take this bit of symbolism is that the series, metaphorically, is a descent into the dark of night (Voldemort's second reign). Harry going to school in the first book means that the prophecies (etc.) about Voldemort and Harry are going to come true, soon, and so the 'day' that happened after Voldemort's first reign of terror was ending. As others have mentioned, the artwork gets progressively darker, until things are "darkest before the dawn", like in the sixth book when Death Eaters have killed Dumbledore and are actively taking over the Ministry. Finally, in DH, the long night of Voldemort is over, and so the cover shows the dawning of a new, Voldemort-free day.
  • The covers were all done by the same artist, Mary GrandPré. She uses a more mature style as the series progresses and the story lines become more mature.
  • Alan Rickman does a great job of capturing Snape's complex character. So much so that watching the film version of Order Of The Phoenix and watching his scenes involving the Occlumency lessons makes you realize: Snape shows almost genuine worry for Harry, describing what Voldemort could do if he got into Harry's head. He also seems to disparage traits associated with James or Sirius (such as being sentimental, foolhardy, or arrogant), whilst also praising traits such as self-control, mastery of the mind, and other such traits... that could easily be associated with Lily's strengths!
  • Rickman was the only person besides JKR who knew that Snape had been in love with Lily before Deathly Hallows came out, so not only was JKR dropping hints in all of the books, Rickman has been dropping some very subtle hints in his performance. The only character movie!Snape ever looks in the eyes is Harry.
  • Mad Eye turning Malfoy into a ferret seems funny at first. But Malfoy's a daddy's boy, and Moody is actually Barty Crouch Jr, who hates the Death Eaters who abandoned Voldemort, Lucius being one of them. When Draco mentions his father, “Moody” gets even angrier, because Lucius has made so much money out of not being loyal to Voldemort. Barty Crouch, Jr. was jealous of Draco.
  • In Deathly Hallows, Xenophilius tells the story of the three brothers. One died for power (elder wand), one died for love (resurrection stone), and one greeted death like an old friend. In the final battle for Hogwarts, three very important characters die: Voldemort for power, Snape for love, and Harry greets death like an old friend.
  • In Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone Draco Malfoy seems a funny character. But seen in the series as a whole, Draco Malfoy seems to be crafted into a classic Threshold Guardian, as every decision Harry made in book one that defined him as a hero for most of the school year happened in response to Draco being a douche.
  • At the end of the last book/film, when Harry died, he was allowed to choose whether he wanted to stay dead or come back to life for the final battle against Voldemort. This was because at the time, he was the owner of the invisibility cloak, the resurrection stone and the elder wand. He was the master of death, that's why he got to choose for himself whether to live or die, even in the face of an avada kedavra curse.
  • The symbolism of the wands. Voldemort's wand was made of Yew, the whole "death tree symbolism", but his and Harry's wands were connected by the same phoenix, the bird of rebirth -the whole "horcruxes of each other" thing with the core being the same and all phoenix-connected, and Harry's wand was made of Holly, connected to rebirth in several mythologies including Christianity, to mirror Voldemort's wand. Because even though they both come back, Harry's the one who ultimately lives.
  • Lily Potter's wand was made of willow, which is traditionally associated with healing, protection and love. Her last act on Earth was to give her son the protection of her love. Also Elder (sometimes known as witchwood) is linked magically to protection, often against lightning strike, but bad luck will fall on anyone who uses it without permission. In other words, Voldemort's use of a wand that wasn't strictly his brought about his death via a certain young man with a lightning scar.
  • The Elder Wand's core is of thestral hair. Thestrals can only be seen by those who have both witnessed and accepted the reality of death. Voldemort has never accepted death as anything but a disgrace or something to be defied, so has never accepted its reality despite having murdered hundreds of people. Harry, though he's only seventeen, has witnessed many, many deaths, accepted it can't be undone or defied, and walked uncomplainingly to his own death. Guess which one of them understands the Elder Wand's inner nature, and is worthy to receive it?
  • In Half-Blood Prince. The scene involving Harry making Dumbledore drink the potion was nasty enough to begin with, but it becomes much worse when you realize what that potion actually does, as hinted by the flashbacks in Deathly Hallows: It makes you live through your worst memories over and over, presumably worse each time.

    General Part 3 
  • People's predictions aren't as far-fetched as they seem. At every opportunity starting with Harry's first divination class in Prisoner of Azkaban, Trelawny has insisted that Harry will die a premature death (with one exception in Order of the Phoenix). Guess what? He does. She also references the Grim, which is supposed to herald death, and he even sees it a few times, but it turns out to be Sirius — whom Harry sees before he dies. Also, in Half Blood Prince, Dumbledore says that Slughorn has a knack for predicting who will go on to become famous. Slughorn then invites Ginny to his elite club after witnessing her Bat-Bogey hex. Fast forward to the epilogue, Ginny's become the senior Quidditch correspondent for the Daily Prophet after a successful career with the Holyhead Harpies team and is the wife of the most famous wizard of all time: Harry Potter. Not only that, but Harry and Ron's predictions for each other also come true: Ron predicts Harry will have a 'windfall of unexpected gold' and the next year Harry wins a thousand Galleons in the Triwizard Cup. Harry predicts that Ron will face 'trials and suffering' but also have 'great happiness.' Ron suffers as much as anyone in the series (apart from Harry himself perhaps), but in the end lives happily ever after with his hot nerd love, Hermione. Dynamic Dragon
  • Sure, it was easy enough to accept that Snape hated Neville because he was a Gryffindor, he was incompetent, and he was available, but it wasn't until some time after reading Deathly Hallows that it becomes clear that his particular hatred for Neville was due to his belief that if Neville had been the Chosen One named in the prophecy - that if Voldemort had decided to attack the Longbottoms instead of the Potters - Lily would still be alive. - knave
  • After reading the seventh book, Snape's hatred for Harry is seen in a different light. Not only did Harry have his mother's eyes and look like his father (reinforcing the bond they had and the fact that Snape would never see Lily again), but he also might have been Snape's son in a different world. Hard to be friends with a kid like that. —Serene Shadow
  • If you read "The Prince's Tale" with the mindset of "Snape views Dumbledore as a father figure" (which, considering Snape's real father, is not that far-fetched of an assumption), it adds a whole new dimension to Snape's resentment of Harry: Snape is very much the "Well Done, Son" Guy, constantly putting his life on the line for Dumbledore and doing everything he asks, which condemns him to a life of being hated by the entire Wizarding World when he kills Dumbledore, while Harry (in Snape's mind) will do much of the same and be worshipped by the Wizarding World, because everyone wants to see Voldemort killed. (Unfortunately, this makes Dumbledore seem pretty cold and even more manipulative than he already is, because it reads as though he deliberately took advantage of Snape's desperation for approval by a father-figure and tormented him with it.)
  • On the first trip on the Hogwart's Express, Ron has a smudge on his nose that won't come off. If you pay close attention to the conversation on the platform, it seems to be implied that the twins put the smudge on as a practical joke. - Comic Book Goddess
  • In Prisoner of Azkaban, when Snape confronts Sirius, he says: "Give me a reason. Give me a reason to do it and I swear I will." Pretty harsh, but remember, this is the guy that almost got Snape eaten by a werewolf. Then in Goblet of Fire and Order of The Phoenix, they're a bit more civil to each other, but still obviously carrying grudges. Fast forward to Deathly Hallows and Harry's magical mystery tour through Snape's memories shows him that Snape was in love with Lily. And the realization hits with a big KA-BOOM. Like the entire rest of the magical world, Snape had thought that Sirius betrayed the Potters and was responsible for Lily's death, and only found out the truth after Voldemort's return (when he went to Voldemort two hours after the Triwizard final and would have seen Pettigrew there). Instantly did two things: put a whole new spin on that entire confrontation, and made you realize how far in advance JKR had planned out the whole thing. — DiScOrD tHe LuNaTiC
    • Also, Snape was in the Shrieking Shack while Sirius and Lupin were explaining the whole thing. The creak in the stairwell that is heard is Snape. He was late to the party, however, and only heard about his childhood days at Hogwarts: nothing about the Secret Keeper. He still thought Black was the one who betrayed the Potter's and that he was deluding Harry, Hermione, and Ron. - mermaidgirl45
  • Given that both are muggle-borns and teen geniuses, Snape's nasty treatment of Hermione might not be just because he's a jerkass, but also because she reminds him of Lily, and he's probably angered by her friendship with Harry (who of course reminds him of James Potter)- Jordan
  • At first it seem that Voldemort's line "Stand aside, you foolish girl" and offering to spare Lily's life was unimportant. Then Deathly Hallows rolls around, and Snape admits he begged Voldemort for Lily's life. Because of this, he offered to spare Lily if she let him kill Harry, and she offered herself in place. When he killed her he essentially accepted the bargain, and then went back on it, which was why the spell backfired. Because Snape asked for Lily to live, Harry is the Chosen One! It could never have been anyone else. That is brilliant. -Darkloid_Blues
  • Luna was shot from either knee or waist height, or from a distance so that her feet was out of focus in the film adaptation of "Order of the Phoenix". The only time that the camera showed her feet clearly was when she and Harry were in the Forbidden Forest, surrounded by the Thestrals, and Harry asked why she was barefoot.
  • In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. by rallying against Umbridge, they were rallying against the Ministry. If Umbridge hadn't been the DADA teacher, there would have been no reason for Dumbledore's Army to form. Dumbledore's Army was kind of its own family, and Umbridge helped form an allegiance between the entire student body and the teachers, as well as the ghosts. Without the family of DA or the entire schoolwide allegiance already established, nobody besides a few teachers would have been so willing to take up arms against Voldemort, both at the Battle of the Astronomy Tower, or the Second Wizarding War. Harry's support system would have been severely diminished, especially at the end of the seventh book. Harry would probably have not so eagerly led a group in rebellion, if it hadn't been for Dumbledore's Army. Basically, the whole reason anything in the sixth or seventh book worked at all, not to mention with as relatively few casualties there were, was because of Umbridge, and her Ripple Effect over the entire school in the fifth book. Jo, you are one clever bastard. katzgoboo
  • Remember how Trelawney in Prisoner of Azkaban makes a big fuss of there being thirteen people at the dinner table, because the first to rise will die? In Order of the Phoenix there are thirteen people at dinner in Grimmauld Place: Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny, Fred, George, Bill, Arthur, Molly, Mundungus, Tonks, Remus and Sirius and Sirius rises first. Also J K Rowling is oft quoted on fan rumour pages as saying that a huge fan of Harry's was going to die. People took this to mean Colin Creevey or Ginny, but as she says in Order of the Phoenix Harry is the person Sirius most cares about. - Sweet-Indigo
  • Take a good look at the prophecy lines "marked as his equal" and "has power he knows not". First, consider that Harry was a horcrux, which meant he couldn't kill Voldemort without dying first, whereas Voldemort clearly had no such restriction...making them not necessarily equals. Secondly, due to Voldemort's obsessive belief that Harry was the chosen one, it meant that he disregarded most everyone else's abilities as irrelevant. Now look at Neville, who 1) would be free to defeat Voldemort without dying, and 2) clearly not deemed as important to Voldemort, would possess abilities which Voldemort did not know what they were. In short, up until the very end, it was still up in the air exactly whom the prophecy applied to. - Totemic Hero

    General Part 4 
  • There was more to Harry's angst in Order of the Phoenix than just being a broody teenager. In Deathly Hallows, while taking turns wearing the locket Horcrux, whoever is wearing it feels miserable, and their situation seems even worse than it is (and it's pretty bad to begin with). Near the end of Deathly Hallows, we learn that part of Voldemort's soul is attached to Harry's soul. So imagine having the locket Horcrux inside you at all times with no way to remove it. And this was coupled with the fact that Voldemort had come back to full power, which strengthened the connection between his soul and the piece of it in Harry. So it wasn't just Harry wangsting and whining, it was being so close to Voldemort that it made everything seem worse to him. This also opens up more Fridge Brilliance about why Harry was more upset over Cedric's death than Sirius's. Because of Harry's connection with Voldemort, it made Cedric's death more tragic to him than to anyone else, except probably Cho. Harry was very upset after Sirius died at the end of Order of the Phoenix, but didn't seem to be afterwards. Voldemort started using Occlumency against Harry sometime between the fifth and sixth books. When Harry took off the locket in Deathly Hallows, he immediately felt much less miserable. After being directly connected to Voldemort's soul for an entire year, having Voldemort blocking himself from it was enough of a relief that he was able to get over Sirius's death faster than he could have with Cedric's. -Giga Metroid 99
  • JKR is known for her placement of Chekhov's Guns throughout the novels, like the locket and the diary, which are given an importance later on (though in the case of the diary, it was more of an explanation for why it could do what it did). And the reason Harry was able to get glimpses of Voldemort's plans... was because he was bonded to Voldemort... as a Horcrux. -The Otaku Ninja
  • When Petunia reveals that she knows what Dementors are (in the 5th book), she blushes and says "I heard that...awful boy telling her years ago" and Harry angrily says "If you mean my dad, just say his name". But after you read the 7th book, you discover that she didn't mean James at all. She was referring to Snape. It's a brilliant reference that frames the relationship between Lily, Snape, and Petunia, seeming like a useless remark from both characters until you read the last book.
  • The entire "Snape's Worst Memory" sequence was set up to be much more meaningful in hindsight. At first, it appears that it is his worst memory simply because it shows him being bullied by James and his friends and ostracized at school. His encounter with Lily is just an afterthought as Harry is pulled out of the memory. Harry angsts about his father not being the hero he had pictured, and we move on. However, we later find out that this was his worst memory because, in an angry attempt to save face, he called Lily, his best friend who he had loved for years, a "filthy Mudblood", ruining their friendship (since he had already been hanging out with anti-Muggle, future-Death-Eater students who Lily hated, this was the last straw) and destroying his chances at being with her.-Kiirii XVI
  • In the film version of Goblet of Fire, FakeMoody does a pitch-perfect imitation of Hagrid saying "Marvelous Creatures, Dragons." While kind of cool, it seemed to serve no real purpose. But: While in the book series the Polyjuice Potion changes people both externally and internally, it's established in the film versions of Chamber and Hallows that Film!Polyjuice DOES NOT CHANGE YOUR VOICE. Thus, Barty Crouch Jr. was set up as being adept at Vocal Mimicry, another reason he was able to successfully pass as Moody. As much as I hate the film representation of the Junior Crouch, this was a neat little final clue before the potion wore off. - Goblin27
  • It seemed at first that Voldemort cursed the position of the DADA teacher purely out of spite (if I can't have it, nobody can). Then, after the evidences of abysmal ineptitude of the general wizarding population were presented (like the Ministry of Magic having to buy hats imbued with a Shield Charm from a prank shop), the strategic magnificence of V's move becomes clear. He ensured that the DADA classes would become a total mess, no consistent teaching routine would be possible and before long the school would run out of decent DADA teachers completely, thus dealing a crushing blow to the opposition. - Gess
  • W Sirus' nickname Padfoot seems just a sort of pun like the rest of them because dogs have padded feet.But in some British Isles mythology, the black dog is a death avatar that goes by many different names. One of them happens to be Padfoot. Now Trelawney's prediction makes a lot more sense. Sirus also is a death avatar; his friends from school all die rather violent deaths, so does Harry, and his cousin Tonks. - ashilles
  • Ron mentioned in Deathly Hallows that Voldemort had made his own name taboo—that is, if anyone said it, it would automatically dispatch the Snatchers, who would then rough them up (or, if it turned out to be Harry, turn his ass in). He not only finds a way to separate Harry from everyone else (because he knows Harry's one of the few who has the balls to say the name), he also mocks Harry's (and by extension Dumbledore's) bravery. He wants to keep the wizarding world in a constant state of fear, and creating such an intense fear of his name alone is, in my opinion, sheer, terrifying genius. We're often told that Voldemort is super intelligent and super evil, but details like this really show it. -Maiira
  • Throughout the series characters speculate on why Dumbledore never gives Snape the Defense Against the Dark Arts job. Generally, the idea is that Dumbledore doesn't trust him near the subject. Actually, its' because Dumbledore knew the job was jinxed so that no one would last more than a year, so he put off giving it to Snape to make sure Snape was always around...until there came a time when he knew that Snape would be leaving before the end of the year anyway.
  • Lily might have been so good at potions (according to Slughorn) because she was friends with Snape. If that's the case, then Slughorn was right about Harry being just like his mother. They both got their potions skills from the Half Blood Prince.
  • The Marauders are first mentioned in Prisoner of Azkaban in the order "Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs". This just happens to be the reverse of the order in which they die - James first, then fourteen years later Sirius, then two years later Peter at Malfoy Manor, then a few weeks later Remus during the final battle. - Bulbaquil
  • We find out in the epilogue of Deathly Hallows that Neville became the herbology professor at Hogwarts. However, Word of God stated that he served briefly as an auror. Although he proved in the books to be adept at both herbology and auror-ing, it seems a bit of a strange career change to make. Then I realized it would make perfect sense if he ever found out his wife Hannah was pregnant — Neville was probably worried about being in such a high-risk profession, not out of fear for his own safety, but because he didn't want his kids to grow up without a father the way he had to.
  • Why is Hermione still a buck-toothed geek in her fourth year? Because her Muggle dentist parents want her to stay with braces. Why do they want her to have braces instead of the inordinately faster, cheaper, and more painless shrinking of her front teeth? Because they haven't figured out all the little exploits of magic yet, or don't want to figure it out. - Landis
  • The first thing we ever learn about Uncle Vernon is that he works at a company which manufactures drills. That's right: Uncle Vernon's job is literally boring.
  • Why is Harry the one who has to look for the Horcruxes (and Hallows)? Because he's a great seeker. It could have been indirectly foreshadowed as far back as when he first attempted to catch his letters from Hogwarts. Although that's a stretch.

    General Part 5 
  • Why does Hermione stick with Harry after Ron leaves? Remember how she had no friends before Harry and Ron in school? Also compare Harry's fallouts with Hermione in the third book and Ron in the fourth. Ron hangs around with his brothers and the boys in the class. Hermione meanwhile is left on her own - and it's her own fault. She alienates Harry after the Crookshanks incident but has learned her lesson by the sixth book. This time when she and Ron fall out, Harry still sticks by her somewhat. He's the first true friend she has ever had and she's repaying that by sticking with him. More importantly, she remembers how she felt when Harry and Ron weren't speaking to her. She knows how awful it feels to be alone and thinking your best friends hate you. She never goes back to being truly alone so it must have been truly horrible for her. She won't let Harry go through that as well in the middle of a Wizarding War.
    • Hermione's loyalty to Harry is also symbolic within the text. As Dumbledore later points out, she serves as the tempering, grounded influence that Dumbledore should've been to his former friend Grindelwald. While the two characters aren't especially close, Hermione definitely has seems to embody Dumbledore's more rational side who at one point has to convince Harry to keep his focus on the Horcuxes rather than the Hallows.
  • So when Voldemort went to kill baby Harry, he intended for that death to become his 6th horcrux — splitting his soul 7 ways. We don't actually know which item he intended to turn into a horcrux, though. We DO know he wanted to use items that belonged to the founders, and the Potters lived at Godric's Hollow.
  • Harry's ultimate plan for the Elder Wand was to put it back where it was, and die a natural death undefeated in order to break its power. On the surface, and given Word of God that he becomes an Auror, this seems like a bad plan. But the Elder Wand's ownership passes from one owner to the other upon the first person's defeat or murder. The opponent doesn't even need to know what they'd done, as proven by both Harry and Malfoy doing it by accident. So in the event Harry is ever defeated, possession would go to that person, and if that person were defeated, it would go to whoever beat him, and so on and so on until the Elder Wand's power is effectively broken by the simple fact that nobody knows who's supposed to be using the thing. — Sgamer82
  • In the Half-Blood Prince movie, when Dumbledore is trying to convince Draco that he doesn't have to kill him he says "Years ago, I knew a boy who made all the wrong choices, please don't become him." He seems to be referring to Tom Riddle, especially since this echoes his words at the welcoming feast in the beginning of the movie. However, I realized that it makes more sense if he's referring to Regulus Black. There are very few parallels between Draco and Tom Riddle, while Word of God has said that Draco and Regulus are very similar. They both got in a little too deep, but they weren't prepared for the consequences. Dumbledore doesn't seem to see Draco as someone who could possibly become the next dark lord. He seems to see that he's trapped and wants to help him. As far as Dumbledore knows, Regulus is a boy who made the 'wrong choice' to join the Death Eaters, got too far in, backed out, and got killed for it. Dumbledore doesn't want Draco to suffer the same fate, and perhaps wishes to offer Draco the protection he couldn't give to Regulus. - That Crazy Girl With Glasses
  • Just a small one from Chamber of Secrets: the flying car plummets out of the sky at the precise moment that it crosses the boundary of the Hogwarts grounds. That is, when it hits the various enchantments and protections, negating its Hovering Charms.
  • In the first book, it's easy to a small detail with Hagrid showing up at the cabin at the sea; namely, the fact that Vernon Dursley had a gun. This was a big deal: there is a strict gun ban in the UK. Vernon is so paranoid that he resorted to criminal acts in order to protect himself. - The Albino Primid
  • Slytherins are ambitious, but it's not the way one first things when asked to describe someone whose defining trait is ambition. They're grabbing what power they can in any way they can. Crabbe and Goyle didn't subjugate themselves under Malfoy because they're minions, they did so because they were presumably taught from a young age that they would be nothing on their own, and they could only grasp power by being the (non-intellectual) giants on whose shoulders Draco stood while holding onto his bootstraps as he rises to the top. Petty, cruel bullies like Pansy Parkinson and overtly violent bullies like Millicent Bulstrode push everyone else down; they are ambitious in the short-sighted way that bullies in high school, middle school/junior high, and even elementary school are bullies. As long as they're better than any random person, and especially anyone who stands against them (thus challenging their dominance), and can prove it one way or another, that's all they need to be better than everyone. Even Draco in the sixth and seventh books is showing ambition (a steady and sharp decline from his lofty expectations of the first couple or few books), be it in an increasingly desperate way: he's still playing the field as of the end of the sixth book, not necessarily hesitating out of courage or loyalty and certainly not hesitating because he calculated his best odds of survival, and by the time of the seventh book he's doing everything he can to survive under Voldemort's reign (until the Power of Love prompts a change in philosphy). If the houses were more integrated, Slytherin would probably pick off the easiest-to-manipulate First Years from Hufflepuff, but as it is, there are too many aspiring leaders and not enough lackeys so nobody (except Draco, who got Crabbe and Goyle ahead of time thanks to family connections) can build up enough of a power base to get out of the Crab Bucket. -JET73L
  • Ron Weasley as a Keeper? Brilliant. At first, it seemed like an odd position for Ron to take (considering his portrayal, he always seemed like more of a get-up-in-front Chaser type, like Ginny). However, remember the Chess Motifs. Ron, while by no means a genius on par with Slytherin cunning, is shown to have a talent for tactics, and has always stood behind Harry by "having his back". Just like a King would on the chessboard. Ron's position in Quidditch? He's a keeper, which requires him to stay in one spot and guard the goals. If he didn't have his team's back by doing that, the opposing team would simply keep scoring. Just like a King would on the chessboard. What song do the Slytherins sing, later to be modified and made awesome by the Gryffindors? Weasley is our KING . Mind=Blown.
    • Given that Ron mentions his brothers always made him play Keeper when they used him in practice, he likely chose it since it's what he has the most experience in. Then there's the fact that when he joined, it was the only opening.
  • The reason Harry and Ginny's relationship doesn't get as fleshed out as some people would like is that those are their moments. Harry's famous (both in-series and out), but it's mentioned that the moments he has with Ginny are just ordinary, sweet, romantic moments, and he feels as if they were stolen from the life of someone without a lightning scar. The author decided to give Harry some privacy. It's not just lazy writing—Harry's relationship with Cho Chang got plenty of development before it crashed and burned.
    • Not to mention the fact that Ginny and Harry aren't exactly strangers by the time they finally start going out. A lot of the fleshing out of their eventual relationship was done before the relationship became official. Another thing that wasn't described in detail was Ginny and Harry's interactions when they lived together in the Burrow over the course of several weeks every year. Starting with Chamber of Secrets, Harry's at the Burrow or otherwise living with the Weasleys for the majority of each summer and every single winter holiday. By contrast, Cho's attraction to Harry, not counting her complicated emotional state, looks that much more shallow.
  • In an old (pre-"Order of the Phoenix") chat interview, someone asked about Riddle's mention (in "Chamber of Secrets") of Hagrid raising werewolf cubs under his bed, and whether they were "the same kind of werewolves" as Lupin. Rowling stated that this never happened: "Riddle was telling lies about Hagrid, just slandering him". Of course, back in "Chamber of Secrets" no one would have batted an eye at a mention of werewolf cubs, but Professor Lupin gets introduced later and we find out that werewolves are really just people with an incurable magical disease. To call their children "cubs" and imply that they can be raised under a bed like dogs is seriously offensive Fantastic Racism, but coming from the young Voldemort, it's no surprise. It's also consistent with the way Voldemort uses Fenrir Greyback, a werewolf who's succumbed to and embraced his animalism, essentially as a dog to bite and frighten his enemies.
  • In Order of the Phoenix, when Molly Weasley encounters a Boggart in a locked cabinet, we're told what forms it takes - the lifeless bodies of her family: Ron, Bill, Arthur, Fred and George, Percy, and finally Harry. Did you notice that one tiny detail? Fred and George. Not even in Mrs. Weasley's worst nightmares could she imagine the twins being separated. -iheardavoice
  • Dumbledore, Riddle (Voldemort), Snape and Harry are four of the important characters in the series, and shared more than a few similarities. All four could be considered the best representatives of their respective generations. All four were half-bloods. All four considered Hogwarts their true home.
  • Lily and Petunia (and Narcissa) have flower names. Sure, but there's nothing really brilliant about it - until you think about the flower meanings of both. One of the meanings of the lily is death, the petunia can mean anger and resentment, and the narcissus means selfishness that leads to tragedy.
  • While still irresponsible, Fudge's skepticism regarding Harry's assertion that Voldemort was back makes a lot more sense when you consider what had happened (or, as it turns out, Snape convinced him had happened) the previous year: specifically, that Harry had been confunded by Sirius to convince him that the guy was innocent. We don't know a whole lot about the mechanics of the Confundus Charm, but just look at Dawlish's experience with it in Deathly Hallows, where being charmed lets everyone and their grandma (literally, in Neville's case) get the drop on him. Throw in Rita Skeeter's various articles throughout Goblet of Fire, and it's not that surprising that Fudge would see Harry as mentally addled at best, crazy at worst. All the evidence was indicative of just that!
  • Why would Voldemort, who Dumbledore claims is afraid of the idea of death, use Inferi (AKA Dead bodies reanimated by magic)? You would think that the Inferi would remind him that no matter how much magic someone has, they will still die. But it makes sense when you consider that Voldemort uses them to convince himself that he has some sort of control over death.
  • Who Hermione would have become if she hadn't befriended Ron and Harry : Percy Weasley. And that explain why Ron made her cry so easily. He struck right where it hurt immediately and didn't even think about it probably because that's how Percy is treated in his family (notably by the twins). The fact that Hermione realized that those two were ready to risk their lives to save her made her lie to protect them in return and generally gave her the first clue that rules aren't always the most important things which gave her the chance to prove how remarkable she could be under her bossiness. It's sad that Percy never had the chance to show this. .
  • The dormitories for Gryffindor and Ravenclaw are above ground in towers, while those for Hufflepuff and Slytherin are in the cellars. This arrangement corresponds to each House's animal mascot: lions like to stand atop tall rocks to survey their territory and eagles perch on clifftops or trees, whereas badgers and many species of snakes retreat underground to sleep.
  • It is heavily implied by various official sources that in the H.P universe JKR is a squib who wrote Harry Potter's biography and sold it to the muggles as fiction. This is wonderful because imagine the sheer joy of all the muggleborns who will be told the world of their favorite book is absolutely real. It also means that explaining the ins and outs of the wizarding world will be much simpler than before the books were published. Despite this, prime ministers will have an even harder time believing what they are told on their first night "Harry Potter really exists! Don't be ridiculous"
  • Hermione's patronus is an otter, and otters are members of the weasel family. Yet more proof of whom she'd marry!
  • A typical fanfiction device to vilify Dumbledore is that he never allowed Sirius to have a trial and didn't stop Fudge's manhunt in spite of being the head of the legislative/judicial branch of the Ministry. British law allows for bills of attainder (in short, someone who has confessed treason or murder can be chucked in prison without trial): Crouch had the Wizengamot pass a bill of attainder on Sirius based on him 'confessing' on sixteen separate felonies (the murders of Peter and twelve Muggles and aiding the murders of the Potters and Harry's attempted murder) before various witnesses, including Fudge. Meaning that, without either Wormtail being confirmed alive or a witness coming out and saying that Sirius' confession was actually him blaming himself for not having stopped the murders, Dumbledore has no way to give him a trial.
  • How did James and Lily wind up together, when James was a Jerk Jock and Lily was a loyal friend who would fiercely stand up for what is right? Well... they're not that different. They're both very loyal to their friends, even when those friends betray them, they're both very intelligent, quite popular (though, as a muggle-born, Lily still may have felt like an outcast like Snape did), magically talented, and pretty brave. They're very much two sides of the same coin; Lily uses her personality for good, and James abuses it and becomes a Jerk Jock. But then James undergoes Character Development, and it's only then that Lily begins to think of him than something other than an 'arrogant toerag.' The central theme to the books is that choices make people who they are, not inborn traits— Lily and James both made choices that made them the people who they were, and James's choices led to Lily finally falling for him!
  • In the movies, the Death Eaters' appearances were modeled after the Nazis and KKK. It made the comparisons to those organizations a little to blatant and Anvilicious. But dressing up like the Nazis and KKK would work to frighten and intimidate muggles and muggle-borns, the Death Eaters' primary victims, who would have knowledge of these groups from muggle history.
  • Several people have complained about the wizarding world only giving 7 years of formal education. This is internally consistent. In half blood prince Voldemort says that 7 is the most magically powerful number. If the nonmagical world discovered that x number of years of education is ideal, then we would ensure that people received x number of years of formal education. -timeaesnyx
  • A lot of people find it surprising that muggle-borns like Lily or Hermione can be so adept at magic. Well, it's not that they're naturally gifted with magic, they're just better at school because they've had five or six years of muggle education, which taught them skills like basic writing and academic discipline. Their wizard-raised counterparts are just starting school for the first time, and therefore have yet to adapt to the academic environment. If you compare Ron, Harry, and Hermione, you'll note that they're all pretty intelligent, but Hermione has more discipline as she applies herself most at schoolwork and is a good writer. Ron, on the other hand, is very lazy and clueless when it comes to writing essays. Harry's somewhere in the middle, as he did go to muggle school but probably didn't get as much out of it as Hermione because of mistreatment by both the Dursleys and other kids.
    • And why don't most pure-blood wizarding children go to Muggle primary school? Because the pure-bloods are generally seen as the WW's "aristocracy" (old and often powerful families), and until extremely recently, all aristocratic children were schooled at home until they were old enough for a school like Eton or Harrow.
  • Voldemort's Fatal Flaw was his inability to understand the views of others. In the end, he never really got it. He thought that becoming the 'Master of Death' meant that you wouldn't die when it really meant that you accept it without fear like so many of his enemies. So, despite all he did, because of the aforementioned flaw, he would have never gotten it. Word of God says that because of the damage he's done to himself by creating the horcruxes, he doesn't have enough of a soul to send to an afterlife of any kind or even leave a ghost, just stuck in a limbo as a shriveled husk. Tom Riddle's worst fear and the one thing he fought for in the entire series was to avoid death, and now unfortunately for him, he succeeded.
  • The brilliance of the book order. Of course, as most of us know, Cedric Diggory dies in Book 4... which is the Wham Episode that changes the whole tone of the series. There are more deaths in books 5 and 6, and characters we've come to know well literally start dropping like flies in Book 7. But before all of this was Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. One of the running themes in the book series — really from Dumbledore's discussion with Harry from the ending of Philosopher's Stone — is of death being a part of life and really not being the worst thing in the world. Before the first major character death in Book 4, you have book 3, which stands out as the oddball in the series for being the only one where Harry does not have a direct confrontation with Voldemort. What he does face, however, are the dementors, and becomes more afraid of them than possible death at Voldemort's hand, which, second to The Power of Love, is the thing that makes him best equipped to stop Voldemort - especially in Book 7 when he's required to stand at the business end of an Avada Kedavra curse to destroy Voldemort's last horcrux.
  • Avada Kedavra. The most feared spell in the entire wizarding community isn't the one that gives you complete control of another, or one that fills them with mind-breaking pain. It's an unblockable killing curse. Why? There are many worse curses that kill in much more unpleasant ways (burning, crushing, freezing) but a spell that kills someone so quickly they don't even feel it is punishable with a life sentence. In the Muggle World, while it might be disliked, no country would ever outlaw it. It's too humane a method of killing. But wizards haven't fought the large scale style battles muggles have. Their warfare is mostly one on one or one on a few duels. The fate of an entire country would be decided by one unblockable lucky shot. Obviously that couldn't be allowed.
    • It goes far deeper than that. Using it is an automatic proof of a premediated murder ("you have to mean it"). Which, as is shown in the books, damages the caster's soul. Other two Unforgivable Curses are also single-use spells with severely adverse effects. Compare with a Stunning spell, which can be lethal but it is not its basic function.
  • It makes perfect sense that Harry, Ron and Hermione don't use guns to fight Voldemort/Death Eaters. Those from purely wizarding families like Ron wouldn't even understand what a gun is, let alone think it would be any help (and those like Voldemort would actively disdain relying on something invented by Muggles). Meanwhile, Harry and Hermione (despite having Muggle backgrounds), completely lack the criminal/questionable contacts necessary to get their hands on a gun (assuming they could even work it and resupply bullets). Lastly, wands have multiple functions in combat (like disarming, confusing or stunning an enemy). Guns can only kill or maim, which is what Harry and friends avoid doing.
  • Harry thinks of Snape as a Sadist Teacher and is devastated when he becomes the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, but when you think about it he's the only one out of six teachers who hasn't tried to kill and/or injure Harry directly.
  • Harry´s explosive temper seems a bit odd, being him (generally) a calm and quiet boy. But then you remember he´s lived with Vernon his complete life and it´s a lot more sense. First, he´s been repressed to express any feeling and second, that is the only way he knows to canalize his anger.
  • It's a good way of showing how biased Snape is when he awards House Points towards his own house and unfairly takes points from others, giving Slytherin an unfair advantage in the House Cup... or using blatant cheating and trickery to give an ambitious advantage to his house, in no uncertain words. No wonder Slytherin won 7 years straight!
    • But there's practically never been an instance when Snape has actually awarded Slytherin points, no matter how much it seems like that.
  • An extra possibility for why Harry and Hermione didn't happen. At the end of the sixth book, Harry alludes to Ginny being "tough" as one of the things he loves about her. As in, he likes that she's rarely weepy. In the previous book, Harry found all of Cho's crying very unattractive - and it was one of the things that turned him off her. Hermione...well let's face it, the girl is very dramatic. She cries openly in front of Harry and Ron several times. So Harry not liking the crying type is another reason why he doesn't have an interest in Hermione. Note that when Harry is confronted with a crying girl, he behaves very awkwardly and wishes for it to be over. But when Ron is, he comforts said girl.
  • The Dursley's mistreatment of Harry is seen as being because they're small-minded bigots. Petunia is later shown to have loved her sister Lily. They were probably very close, since Lily wrote and asked about Petunia coming to Hogwarts with her and Petunia being so upset about not being allowed to go. Petunia hates magic because she sees it as what destroyed her relationship with her sister and as what ultimately got her sister killed. This is why she's shown to dislike Harry. It's not him, it's what he has; magic.
  • What was the date of Voldemort's first defeat? October 31, or Halloween. What's the term 'Halloween' short for? All Hallows Eve.
  • Why do the Unforgiveable Curses carry the maximum penalty automatically? Because of a successful casting's effect on the caster's character.

    Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone 
  • In Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Ronan the Centaur is angry at Firenze for saving Harry from Quirrell/Voldemort in the Forbidden Forest, as it goes against the stars' foretelling. Harry is destined to be killed by Voldemort in the forest, but not until 6 years later. —
  • Everyone at first thinks Quirrel's stuttering and turban come from a bad encounter with a Vampire in Albania. He did indeed have a bad encounter, but with Voldemort, so it appears this rumor was false. but Voldemort makes Quirrel drink (unicorn) blood on his behalf.
  • When asked what's going on, all the centaurs say is that Mars is particularly bright, 4 books later Firenze explains in a Divination Class that Mars signals war. The Centaurs were telling the wizards that a War was coming!
  • Ronan also says "Always the innocent are the first victims." The first person to die in the second war was Cedric Diggory, a friendly, easygoing kid who'd never hurt anyone.
  • The mirror of Erised.. The entire phrase "Erised stra ehru oyt ube cafru oyt on wohsi" that is carved on the mirror can be read backwards reading "I show not your face but your heart's desire."
  • The sorting hat tells Harry that he could be great in Slytherin. In other words, it was trying to appeal to Harry's ambition. That's a clever way to see if someone should be in Slytherin. And Harry showed courage by asking the hat not to put him in Slytherin.
  • When Scabbers (who is actually Pettigrew, though we don't know that til PoA) bites Goyle in the scene on the train—Harry and Ron are on the verge of fighting them because, in part, Malfoy insulted Harry's parents.
  • Ron's attempt to turn Scabbers yellow didn't just fail because it wasn't a very good spell, but because it specified a rat as its target, and Scabbers isn't really a rat. Or stupid, for that matter.
  • When Dumbledore commends Neville Longbottom for trying to stop the Trio, he comments that while it takes courage to stand up to one's enemies, it takes a great deal more to stand up to one's friends, at the time it seemed like he was merely ensuring that Griffindor would win the house cup. However in the last book that we find out that Dumbledore's greatest regret was not standing up to his friend Grindelwald earlier, which caused the death of his younger sister, and his eventual rise to power.
  • In the shack on the island where Vernon takes the Dursleys, Harry asks Hagrid what happened to Voldermort. Hagrid's response: "Dunno if he had enough human left in him to die." That's exactly what happens: Voldemort doesn't die because only one-seventh of his soul is in his body at the time.
  • Near the end of this book, when Harry is trying to convince Hermione and Ron to break school rules to save the Stone, Harry tells them that this is more important than school rules: "Haven't you heard what it was like when he was taking over? There won't be any Hogwarts to get expelled from! He'll either flatten it or turn it into a school for the Dark Arts!" Not at all like what Voldemort tried to do in Deathly Hallows...
  • Just a small thing, but in the holidays, Fred and George charm snowballs to bounce off the back of Quirels turban. At the end of the book, it is revealed that Voldemorts face is on the back of Quirels head, under his turban. So the twins snowballs were hitting Voldemort! THIS MUST BE A CROWNING MOMENT OF FUNNY!
  • When Harry first feels pain in his scar, it's when he takes a good look at Snape up at the teachers' table during the opening-day feast. What's Snape doing when Harry sees him? Talking face-to-face with Quirrell, which means that the back of Quirrell's head must've been turned towards Harry at the time. The pain wasn't because he'd seen Snape, but because Voldemort was glaring at Harry from under the turban!
  • Dumbledore explains to Harry at the end of the book that Harry's father and Snape "detested each other. Not unlike yourself and Mr. Malfoy." At the time, we, along with Harry, envision James as Harry's own righteous counterpart to Snape's Malfoy-like supremacist bullying. Book 5 makes us realize that it was James who was the prejudiced, over-privileged brat picking on Snape, who was a neglected, ostracized loner. Book 7 cements the parallel when James says to Sirius much the same thing Draco did upon meeting Harry "Imagine being in Slytherin/ Hufflepuff! I think I'd leave, wouldn't you?". (this not to say that Snape wasn't a power-hungry git who made the wrong choices or that James eventually matured and became a good man. It simply underlines how ideology isn't the only thing that makes you good or bad, it's also about personal ethics and compassion.)
  • Hagrid arrives on Sirius's motorbike at the beginning. Well, why did Sirius give him the motorbike? Probably because, as revealed in Prisoner of Azkaban, Sirius was planning on confronting Peter, and expected to end up either dead or in prison.
  • At first the protections guarding the stone seem to be only OK, if they were able to be beaten by three first years. Until you realize it took THREE first years. Each challenge was difficult, but was also set for a specific skill set. The flying keys was designed for someone with quite a bit of athletic skills, while the potions needed someone good at riddles. The troll needed someone who was good at defensive spells, while a chess master has a different set of skills and way of looking at things than some who studies a lot. Even Deadly Snare needed someone was good in Herbology or who reads a lot. Its not the individual tasks were hard, but that the chances of one person being an extremely athletic, logical, strategist who was well read and good at defensive spells is highly unprobable. Even for three very different wizards, two of the tasks had too have already be taken care of them for them (the troll and Fluffy), it still was a challenge. No wonder it took Quirrel all year to figure out how to get past all of them. And because of this multilayered protection, it almost dictated that, barring a wizard equal to the power of Voldemort himself, it would have required a team of people to reach the Mirror of Erised - and more than likely, a team of people willing to sacrifice their chance at the Stone so one person could move forward. (And given that this stone produces instant riches and immortality, good luck with that.) And of course, Dumbledore's final protection was that only someone who only wanted to find the stone - "find it, but not use it" - would be able to get it. (Which pretty much disqualifies 99.99% looking for the Stone.) One could argue that Harry nearly screwed up the plan, because if Dumbledore's words held true, Quirrelmort would have likely just stood there in front of the Mirror for a long time looking stupid if Harry hadn't shown up and willed the Stone to drop right into his pocket.
  • The protections on the Stone also provide a sort of retroactive foreshadowing for who the villain is. Quirell tells Harry that "there is no good and evil- there is only power, and those too weak to seek it." This clearly points to a personal philosophy of 'power and nothing else.' All but one of the traps do not test sheer magical strength- The Devil's Snare required knowledge of Herbology and the ability to keep one's head in a crisis (and was eventually solved by a simple fire spell), the keys required skill at flying and teamwork, the chess set required strategical knowledge and willingness to make sacrifices, and the potion room is explicitly stated to be a test of logic, instead of magic. What is the only test that appears to be a contest of sheer strength (so much so that Harry and company were lucky they didn't have to fight it) and was probably beaten using sheer strength? Quirell's troll!
  • The 'it unscrews the other way' scene in Order of the Phoenix isn't an isolated incident of McGonagall bending the rules. It may be a long-buried desire, and we've seen it before. After all, she saved the reputation of her house's Quidditch team but recruiting a first-year who showed off his skill by recklessly breaking the rules. It wasn't even clear what she was doing at the time, and by the time Harry fully realized what had happened, he probably never made the connection (and, most likely, neither did most readers). She may have even taken deliberate advantage of Harry's lack of knowledge to keep the connection from being properly made.

    Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets 
  • There is a part in "Chamber of Secrets" in which the Weasleys continuously come back to the Burrow because some of the them forget their items. One of these times is when Ginny goes back to the house to get her diary. Sneaky little detail there, JK Rowling.
  • The Deathday Party in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was basically a Wacky Wayside Tribe to get Harry relatively isolated while he's looking completely off his rocker. But after the fifth book you can see this is their shallow imitation of the afterlife.
  • When the security at the school is stepped up, one of the first rules to be introduced is that students must be accompanied in the bathrooms. The teachers don't know about the Chamber, but they know where Myrtle died.
  • When Harry and Ron polyjuice themselves, Malfoy brags about how the Ministry doesn't know about "the secret chamber under their drawing room". Harry, Ron, Hermione, Luna, Ollivander, and Griphook will see that chamber first-hand in DH.
  • The amazingly casual mentions of the Vanishing Cabinets throughout this book, given the roles they would later play. First, Harry hides in the one in Borgin and Burkes - leaving the door open a crack, thank heavens, because at this point they were both still working. In Book 5. In what seems like a typical Weasley twin pranking, Fred and George throw Montague of the Inquisitorial Squad (and Slytherin Quidditch Captain) in the working cabinet as he's trying to dock points from Gryffindor. It's from this seemingly throwaway (and initially funny) incident that Malfoy finds out about the connection between the two cabinets in the first place. Later, Nearly-Headless Nick convinces Peeves to drop the Hogwarts one above Filch's office - breaking it and thus setting up Draco's entire plotline in Book 6
  • Harry can hear the Basilisk whispering through the pipes. Why does nobody else hear this? What sound does a snake make in it's natural habitat? That's right, a hiss. What sound does a pipe make in it's natural habitat?
  • In the movie, Acromantulas such as Aragog and his children look like colossal wolf spiders, not true tarantulas. It turns out that the word "tarantula" is originally Italian and was once used to describe what are now called wolf spiders.
  • Why are spiders (and Acromantulas) so particular afraid of the basilisk? Because spiders have eight eyes, pointing in every direction, and no eyelids. If there's a basilisk anywhere near them, they can't help but look directly at it and be killed.
  • Lockheart makes it quite known that he believes Hagrid is behind the attacks whilst escorting students from one class to the next. This seemed unusual,but he was probably still miffed that Hagrid considered Harry more famous than him and hadn't read any of his books. His pettiness knows no bounds.
  • Dobby's name. Dobby or Dobie is a type of fairy, one described as "foolish and helpful". Dobby sincerely wanted to help Harry stay safe (helpful) but went around to trying to achieve that aim in the completely wrong way (foolish).
  • Why does Lockheart grab Ron's wand in order to cast his mind-erasing spell? Simple - he's the only teacher who hasn't been teaching magic, so he's the only one who doesn't know that Ron's wand is broken and screws up spells!
  • Why is Hermione so annoyed with Harry and Ron for flying the car to Hogwarts? Because she has no other friends at that point and is mad at them for her having to be on her own the whole train ride to Hogsmeade.
  • The throwaway mention of Flitwick having been a dueling champion in his youth makes a lot of sense when you look at him or read a description of him. He probably fought with Charms - repurposed non-combat magic you wouldn't normally think would be used for duels - not to mention he was about three feet tall. Of course most adult wizards would have trouble beating him in a duel. As a highly intelligent Charms user, he probably thought outside the box in ways that most would-be duelists wouldn't see coming - but more importantly, his low profile probably made him much harder even to hit with a spell at a distance. .

    Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban 
  • In Harry's Divination lesson Trelawney predicts that Harry was born around Midwinter. Now, he was born on July 31st, so that doesn't make any sense. But, Midwinter might not mean the middle of winter, Trelawney could have been (subconsciously or otherwise) referring to the more traditional use of the word, with the meaning of "at or around the winter solstice". This is still stupid, because Winter Solstice is like the 22nd of December, so still not close to Harry's B-Day. But a birthday near the Winter Solstice is December 31st. The birthday of Tom Riddle. Trelawney wasn't reading Harry's "mind," but rather reading off of the but of Voldemort's soul within him.
  • You know the 'thing you are dreading will happen on the 16 of October' prophecy, to Lavender? Hermione uses it to prove that Trelawney is a fraud, as Lavender couldn't have been dreading what happened (her rabbit dying), as it came as a shock to her. But, the prophecy makes perfect sense if you assume one thing: it was a Self Fullfilling Prophecy! Lavender wasn't dreading her rabbit dying, which probably didn't happen on the 16th (she only got the news then), and came as a shock, but something bad happening on October 16, as per Trelawney's prophecy. And something did: she got the news of her rabbit dying.
  • In Prisoner of Azkaban, when Snape confronts Sirius, he says: "Give me a reason. Give me a reason to do it and I swear I will." Pretty harsh, but remember, this is the guy that almost got Snape eaten by a werewolf. Then in Goblet of Fire and Order of The Phoenix, they're a bit more civil to each other, but still obviously carrying grudges. Fast forward to Deathly Hallows, and Harry's magical mystery tour through Snape's memories shows him that Snape was in love with Lily. Like the entire rest of the magical world, Snape had thought that Sirius betrayed the Potters and was responsible for Lily's death, and only found out the truth after Voldemort's return (when he went to Voldemort two hours after the Triwizard final and would have seen Pettigrew there). This instantly did two things: put a whole new spin on that entire confrontation, and made you realize how far in advance JKR had planned out the whole thing. -
  • At first that Voldemort's line "Stand aside, you foolish girl" and offering to spare Lily's life seems unimportant. Then Deathly Hallows rolls around, and Snape admits he begged Voldemort for Lily's life. Because of this, he offered to spare Lily if she let him kill Harry, and she offered herself in place. When he killed her, he essentially accepted the bargain, and then went back on it, which was why the spell backfired. Because Snape asked for Lily to live, Harry is the Chosen One! It could never have been anyone else. That is brilliant.
  • Why the Dementor's Kiss was used as punishment instead of death: People can just come back as ghosts if their soul isn't harmed.
  • When Harry, Hermione, Ron, Neville, and Ginny are confronted by the Dementor on the Hogwarts Express in Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry passes out because, to paraphrase Lupin's later quote: "There are horrors in Harry's past that the others don't have." However, remember that of the other four kids, the one most affected is Ginny, "who was huddled in her corner looking nearly as bad as Harry felt". Not much emphasis is put on this, but the reason is that she's only two months removed from having been Mind Raped by Diary Horcrux-Voldemort. Also Neville was very pale and his voice was higher then normal. Neville's parents were tortured into insanity and can no longer recognize him, thats pretty traumatic.
  • When reading Prisoner of Azkaban, Sirius's nickname Padfoot seems just a sort of pun like the rest of them, because dogs have padded feet. Now, after looking into some of the British Isles mythology, the black dog is a death avatar that goes by many different names. One of them happens to be Padfoot. Now Trelawney's prediction makes a lot more sense. Sirus also is a death avatar; his friends from school all die rather violent deaths, so does Harry, and his cousin Tonks.
  • The Marauders are first mentioned in Prisoner of Azkaban in the order "Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs". This just happens to be the reverse of the order in which they die - James first, then fourteen years later Sirius, then two years later Peter at Malfoy Manor, then a few weeks later Remus during the final battle.
  • Harry's dad was the genius behind the three animagi — an incredibly difficult transfiguration to pull off [no comment on how Rita Skeeter did it] which he pulled off as a teen. Back in Book one, Ollivander described Daddy Potter's wand as "good for transfiguration." Wand and wizard were more than just good; they were exceptional!
  • Why Voldemort has so much control over Dementors, and why Dementors don't seem to affect him like everyone else: Voldemort's soul is so tiny, the Dementors see a creature similar to them, and thus, are more likely to follow him! Also, the fact that his soul is so small means that the Dementors wouldn't get much out of it. On the flipside, the reason Harry is so affected by Dementors, and why they always seem to go for him: Harry is established as having a particularly powerful soul, full of all the things that Voldemort has ignored in his pursuit of immortality. To the Dementors, they see something so unlike them, that they need to put it out, to consume Harry's soul would be like a rare feast, since his heart is full of the things that Dementors feed on.
  • Several different people mention that Dumbledore dislikes Dementors. While he let's them guard the school, he doesn't let them enter the grounds and is furious when they do. This seems perfectly reasonable - Dementors are, after all, nasty creatures - but there is a simpler explanation: Every time the Dementors come near him, Dumbledore has to relive Ariana's death.
  • On the American English hardback jacket, the preview information gives plenty of information on Sirius, From a Certain Point of View. It implies guilt, but does not explicitly state it as fact. Additionally, the last sentences are "Harry Potter isn't safe, not even within the walls of his magical school, surrounded by his friends. Because on top of it all, there may well be a traitor in their midst". At the bottom of this fold in the jacket is a rat, which unlike everything else on the cover, is small, casts a large shadow, and seems unnecessary. It's even standing on its hind legs.
  • Every animagus in the series turns into an animal indicative of his or her true personality. James became a stag, a proud leader (plus possible Bambi references). Sirius became a dog, and he was very loyal, a prized trait in dogs. Peter Pettigrew became a rat, Wikipedia has them as "vicious, unclean, parasitic animals that steal food and spread disease" and further comments "It is a term (noun and verb) in criminal slang for an informant - "to rat on someone" is to betray them by informing the authorities of a crime or misdeed they committed. Describing a person as "rat-like" usually implies he or she is unattractive and suspicious." Rita Skeeter became a beetle, which are often seen as pests. As for McGonagall, well...
  • Hermione's boggart is Professor McGonagall telling her she's failed everything—not because she's afraid of academic underachievement (although yes, she certainly is) but because she's afraid of failure and being inadequate.
  • After Snape confiscates and attempts to read the Mauraders Map, he calls Lupin, and asks him if he believes Harry might have gotten the map from the makers. While it's not obvious at the time, he's indirectly accusing Lupin of giving Harry the Map - after all, he went to school with the Marauders, and knows the nicknames they gave themselves. At the end of the conversation, Lupin says, "I'll take this (the map) back, shall I?" even though he hasn't held it at any point during the conversation. Of course, Lupin is one of the owners.
  • At the very end of the story, Harry says that "none of it made any difference". In a way, this makes it something of a Shaggy Dog Story. Who was the Prisoner of Azkaban? A Shaggy Dog. To take it one step further, Lupin replies "it made all the difference in the world!" What seemed like a Shaggy Dog Story at first was actually something much more meaningful. Sort of like how the Prisoner of Azkaban was not just a "Shaggy Dog".
  • When Harry and Hermione are on their way back to the Hospital Wing after rescuing Sirius from the tower, they hear Peeves "bouncing along the corridor in boisterous good spirits, laughing his head off." Hermione assumes that Peeves is "all excited because the dementors are going to finish off Sirius" However, we know from book 5 that Peeves likes the school troublemakers, like Fred and George. Peeves isn't celebrating because Sirius got caught- he's celebrating because he knows Sirius escaped.
  • Fudge and Dumbledore's exchange after Snape's tirade at the end turns out to be mildly foreshadowy. Fudge says Snape seems unbalanced and that "I'd watch out for him if I were you, Dumbledore," but Dumbledore is unfazed. Three years later, Snape will prove to indeed be somebody Dumbledore apparently should have been watching out for, but in the end we learn Dumbledore was right to trust him.

    Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire 
  • When the trio is trying to figure out how Rita Skeeter was able to overhear private conversations, Harry suggests Rita had Hermione bugged with an electronic device. Of course, that isn't possible because electronics don't work in the wizarding world. However, Harry was onto something, because by the end of the book we find out Rita Skeeter's secret: she is an unregistered animagus, her form being a beetle. Hermione literally was ''bugged''!
  • In the film version of Goblet of Fire, Fake!Moody does a pitch-perfect imitation of Hagrid saying "Marvelous Creatures, Dragons." While kind of cool, it seemed to serve no real purpose, but while in the book series, the Polyjuice Potion changes people both externally and internally, it's established in the film versions of Chamber and Hallows that Film!Polyjuice DOES NOT CHANGE YOUR VOICE. Thus, Barty Crouch Jr. was set up as being adept at Vocal Mimicry, another reason he was able to successfully pass as Moody. As much as I hate the film representation of the Junior Crouch, this was a neat little final clue before the potion wore off. -
  • Why is Hermione still a buck-toothed geek in her fourth year? Because her Muggle dentist parents want her to stay with braces. Why do they want her to have braces instead of the inordinately faster, cheaper, and more painless shrinking of her front teeth? Because they haven't figured out all the little exploits of magic yet, or don't want to figure it out. - Landis
  • In Ron and Harry's big fight, Ron actually makes an effort to make up before Harry does. Reading between the lines of the scene where Ron interrupts Harry's conversation with Sirius, it becomes clear that Ron was waiting up for Harry, presumably to try to make up with him, but when he came down Harry was so rude to him that he gave it up for the moment. Note also that Ron doesn't retaliate when Harry throws a badge at him and he acts less distant towards him the next day.
  • Scientifically speaking a ferret, a stoat, and a weasel share the same family and genus making them the biological equivalent of distant cousins. Draco insultingly refers to the Weasleys as weasels and he got turned into a ferret. Considering Arthur claims the Malfoys are distantly related to the Weasleys, this is hilarious.
  • When Ron states that he is only interested in "pretty girls," no matter their personality, and then rejects Eloise Midgen as a date because her nose is very slightly off center, Hermoine seems to be overreacting to his comments, but Hermoine still has her buck-teeth, so she is actually reacting to hearing the boy she has a crush on state that he likely has no interest in her because she isn't 'pretty' by his standards!
  • When Snape tells Harry that he knows that he took boomslang skin and gillyweed from his private stores, Harry automatically thinks that he is thinking back to the Polyjuice from Chamber of Secrets. In fact, Snape was almost certainly thinking about the recent removals by Fake!Moody, which Harry honestly had no knowledge about.
  • In the scene where Mrs. Weasley is cooking, she accidentally puts too much energy into a potato-peeling spell and knocks the whole pile onto the floor. This happens because she's a mite miffed with Fred and George over a prank they'd pulled on Dudley. Guess who turns out to have a ton of power at her disposal in book 7, when Bellatrix gives her something to really be furious about?
  • Why couldn't Parvati and Padma Patil, who are described in the book as "the two prettiest girls in the year", find dates before Harry and Ron asked them (or, rather, Harry asked Parvati and then asked Padma on Ron's behalf)? Once Padma's introduced, they go everywhere together, so they must be fairly close. It's very likely, then, that Parvati was turning down guys that had asked her (because, given her looks and outgoing personality, there's no way Harry was the first one) so Padma, who was bookish and probably shy, wouldn't be left alone.
  • When Harry first opens the egg in the Gryffindor common room and everyone hears the screaming, Neville thinks it sounds like someone being tortured and that Harry might have to face the Cruciatus Curse during the second task. It's easy enough to connect this to his parents. However, there's also a subtle Call Back when Seamus interprets the screaming as a banshee - shown to be his boggart in the previous book. In other words, both Neville and Seamus interpreted the egg's clue as something they were personally afraid of.
  • The idea that there's no loophole to get someone out of the tournament if they didn't enter themselves or got cold feet seems utterly ludicrous until you remember an important fact: It was Crouch who said there was no loophole or escape clause. The same Crouch who is currently mind controlled into helping Voldemort's plan to abduct Harry using the tournament. There might well have been a way out but the only person asked was working for the man who had Harry entered in the first place.
  • Draco's "bouncing ferret" stage seems really over the top in a number of ways... but Crouch Jr. chose an action that was in character both for himself and for Moody. Moody, being an ex-Auror, may have had (or assumed to have had) a scrap or two with Lucius Malfoy some years back. It might have been Lucius that hexed Moody in the back once, which would make sense as to why Moody would react so strongly to seeing his son attempt the same thing. As for Crouch, Jr.... well, he's probably pissed that Lucius Malfoy got to sit pretty for all those years while he himself was imprisoned either in Azkaban or in his own home. Not to mention he likely saw Draco Malfoy at the QWC and is jealous that Draco gets all the fatherly love and attention (however strangely Lucius shows it) that he's wanted his entire life.

    Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix 
  • Nymphadora Tonks is Rowling's answer to Mary Sues! Think about it! Her hair and eye color literally changes according to her mood, she ends up with one of the most wanted characters in the series, and in the end, she becomes a martyr!
  • How the entire school basically rallied against Umbridge... by rallying against Umbridge, they were rallying against the Ministry. If Umbridge hadn't been the DADA teacher, there would have been no reason for Dumbledore's Army to form. Dumbledore's Army was kind of its own family, and Umbridge helped form an allegiance between the entire student body and the teachers, as well as the ghosts. Without the family of DA or the entire schoolwide allegiance already established, nobody besides a few teachers would have been so willing to take up arms against Voldemort, both at the Battle of the Astronomy Tower, or the Second Wizarding War. Harry's support system would have been severely diminished, especially at the end of the seventh book. Harry would probably have not so eagerly led a group in rebellion, if it hadn't been for Dumbledore's Army. Basically, the whole reason anything in the sixth or seventh book worked at all, not to mention with as relatively few casualties as there were, was because of Umbridge, and her Ripple Effect over the entire school in the fifth book.
  • Making the character Tonks so clumsy. Being a Metamorphmagus, her center of gravity must be constantly changing as she changes shapes, thus leaving her continuously unable to find her balance.
  • There was more to Harry's angst in Order of the Pheonix than just being a broody teenager. In Deathly Hallows, while taking turns wearing the locket Horcrux, whoever is wearing it feels miserable, and their situation seems even worse than it is (and it's pretty bad to begin with). Near the end of Deathly Hallows, we learn that part of Voldemort's soul is attached to Harry's soul. So imagine having the locket Horcrux inside you at all times with no way to remove it. And this was coupled with the fact that Voldemort had come back to full power, which strengthened the connection between his soul and the piece of it in Harry. So it wasn't just Harry wangsting and whining, it was being so close to Voldemort that it made everything seem worse to him. This also opens up more Fridge Brilliance about why Harry was more upset over Cedric's death than Sirius's. Because of Harry's connection with Voldemort, it made Cedric's death more tragic to him than to anyone else, except probably Cho. Harry was very upset after Sirius died at the end of Order of the Phoenix, but didn't seem to be afterwards. Voldemort started using Occlumency against Harry sometime between the fifth and sixth books. When Harry took off the locket in Deathly Hallows, he immediately felt much less miserable. After being directly connected to Voldemort's soul for an entire year, having Voldemort blocking himself from it was enough of a relief that he was able to get over Sirius's death faster than he could have with Cedric's.
  • The reason for Harry's unusual Jerkass behaviour this whole year? Harry is having PTSD from seeing Cedric get killed!
  • When Snape reads Harry's mind during an occlumency lesson, he looks back to the time when Harry was an infant and Voldemort is attacking their house. Why? Snape wanted to see the last time Lily, the woman he loved, was alive!
  • At the end of the book, Harry is in Dumbledore's office and yells that "People don't like being locked up!" in reference to Sirius. But at his words, Dumbledore immediately shows his first sign of emotion: "Dumbledore closed his eyes and buried his face in his longfingered hands." Why did he react so strongly? He was thinking of his younger sister, Arianna, who we learn in Deathly Hallows spent her life locked up. At this point, now two of the people Dumbledore tried to keep locked up for their own good had died because of him.
  • In the movie, Harry sarcastically comments to Dudley, "Five against one, very brave," in reference to Dudley and his friends beating up a ten-year-old. Later, not counting Harry and the Order members who arrive, it's five against one, and yes, it truly is very brave. Instead of five or six large teenagers picking on a small kid, it's one large man doing far worse than trying to beat up five teenagers, and the teenagers try to fight back, not just out of self-preservation but to help the one singled out.
  • Order of the Phoenix came out three years after Goblet of Fire — the longest gap between any of the two books, which was especially frustrating because Goblet of Fire ended on a cliffhanger. In the first few chapters of Order of the Phoenix, Harry spends a lot of time angsting about being kept in the dark and not knowing what's going on in the wizarding world. This wasn't just to set up Harry as a character that was going to do a lot of angsting, but a way for JK to acknowledge the audience's frustration — "Yes, I know, writing this did take longer than expected, and yes, I'm sorry, and see? Harry is frustrated too!"
  • Regulus Black's name hints at his redeeming actions directly before his death. Regulus is a star in the constellation Leo, the lion. Specifically, it's a red star that represents the lion's heart. HE HAS A LION'S HEART.
  • Remember that spell that James used to humiliate Snape? Well, in "Half-Blood Prince", this very spell is in the Half-Blood Prince's text book as one of the jinxes that the Prince had invented. And, since Snape is the Half-Blood Prince, James must've learned it because Snape had been casting this spell himself! Hell, he'd most likely have used it on James himself. Suddenly, the whole incident doesn't seem quite as unprovoked as Harry had believed.
  • When Umbridge orders Snape to give her more Truth Serum (after finishing it), Snape responds that it will take a month before he can make more, and then says "Unless you wish to poison him - and I assure you I would have the greatest sympathy if you did - I cannot help you.". This is not only a jab at Harry, but it could be taken as a jab to Umbridge herself: "If you harm him, even I'll be sorry for you after what the entire Order will do to you."
  • Why are a celebrity divorce and a water-skiing budgie considered important enough to be on the evening news programme that the Durseleys are watching? Because it's Silly Season.
  • In the first book, Harry notes more than once that he sometimes gets the feeling that Snape can read minds. In this book, we find out that Harry is actually completely right about this when Snape is teaching him Occlumency.
  • Why Snape's Worst Memory is left out of the film. The context is different. In the book Harry enters the Pensieve which Snape is using so that Harry won't have access to his private memories. In the film Harry uses the Shield Charm like he does in the book. He doesn't witness Lily in there because Snape had removed the memory and put it in the Pensieve.
  • The significance of Snape and Lily's interaction in his worst memory. He calls her "Mudblood", essentially calling her the wizard variant of the n-word. Lily responds by pointedly calling him "Snivellus". Up until that point, she has been his friend and Snivellus is what people who bully him call him. She's essentially firing back with the worst thing she could think of calling him, wanting to hurt him as much as he has hurt her. That's also her symbolic way of ending their friendship.

    Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince 
  • When Harry is in detention for cursing Malfoy, he comments on how Snape seemed to be purposely keeping him longer so he couldn't spend as much time which Ginny. While Harry probably thinks this is just because Snape is mean, it may be deeper than that. Think about it — Harry looks extraordinarily like his father. Ginny, meanwhile, has long red hair. Together they resemble Lily and James as a couple. Snape no doubt notices it, and by keeping Harry from Ginny, it's almost like keeping James from Lily.
  • It seemed at first that Voldemort cursed the position of the DADA teacher purely out of spite (if I can't have it, nobody can). Then, after the evidences of abysmal ineptitude of the general wizarding population was presented (like the Ministry of Magic having to buy hats imbued with a Shield Charm from a prank shop), you see the strategic magnificence of V's move. He ensured that the DADA classes would become a total mess, no consistent teaching routine would be possible, and before long the school would run out of decent DADA teachers completely, thus dealing a crushing blow to the opposition.
  • Throughout the series, characters speculate on why Dumbledore never gives Snape the Defense Against the Dark Arts job. Generally, the idea is that Dumbledore doesn't trust him near the subject. Actually, it's because Dumbledore knew the job was jinxed so that no one would last more than a year, so he put off giving it to Snape to make sure Snape was always around... until there came a time when he knew that Snape would be leaving before the end of the year anyway.
  • Lily might have been so good at potions (according to Slughorn) because she was friends with Snape. If that's the case, then Slughorn was right about Harry being just like his mother. They both got their potions skills from the Half-Blood Prince.
  • A bit of casting brilliance here - after Bill Weasley gets savaged by Greyback in Half-Blood Prince, he's described as bearing "a distinct resemblance to Mad-Eye Moody." Who plays Bill in the Deathly Hallows films? Domhnall Gleeson, the son of Brendan Gleeson, who plays Mad-Eye
  • Arthur Weasley is promoted out of the understaffed Misuse of Muggle Artefacts office because war is imminent and it's not a priority. The same thing must have happened in the First Wizarding War - how else could Sirius could keep hold of an illegal flying motorbike?
  • Throughout the first five books, Hermione performs brilliantly at potions, while Harry, failing to pay close enough attention to Snape's instructions, is mediocre at best. In the sixth, he starts making each potion perfectly by following the Prince's advice, which is what he should have been doing all along!
  • Who is the Half-Blood Prince and why is Lily mentioned in here more than in any other book?... Gotcha.
  • In this book, Snape is about to kill Dumbledore, and Dumbledore is left begging, "Severus please...". At first it seems like he's weakly shocked at betrayal by Snape. Actually, it's because he's begging Snape to kill him. Because Snape is putting Dumbledore out of his misery, it doesn't harm his soul. That's why he spent the night searching for him.- blueflame724
    • Furthermore, book 7 tells us that when the unforgivables are used without strong enough intent to cause harm, the effect is lower and they throw whoever they hit across the room. And Snape's killing curse threw Dumbledore from the tower, showing that he lacked the intent to kill the old man and had to force himself.
  • Blaise Zabini. First off, he doesn't exactly come out of nowhere - he's mentioned in passing in Book 1 because he was (alphabetically) the last new student in Harry's year. Of course, from then, the Fandom tried to make a character out of him...or "her" in some fanfics. Then we finally find out (partially through the movie) that he's indeed a Black male. He gets into the Slug Club because his mother is famous. She married seven times, each time to a wealthy husband. Each husband died mysteriously, leaving Blaise and his mother with all the wealth. Of course, the implications there are obvious. Zabini's mom is a "Black widow." The black widow, of course, is a spider that's known for being very poisonous, first off, and second, killing her mates - and the term has been used for a woman who has killed a succession of husbands or boyfriends. The fact that Zabini's mom (more than likely) literally is a Black widow (in terms of race) just makes this even more brilliant.
  • The Death Eater attack of the Burrow put in the film seems pointless but earlier Ron told Harry his mother had not wanted Ron and Ginny to return to Hogwarts because it wasn't safe anymore and to stay home. The attack on the Burrow during Christmas made it clear that nowhere was safe from Voldemort and his followers, not Hogwarts and not even people's homes.
  • When Dumbledore was trying to convince Draco to give up, not kill him, and go into hiding, might he have been trying to course-correct. He might have known Draco disarming him would screw up his plans to break the power of the Elder Wand and hope to win it back by defeating Draco, by convincing him to surrender so the original plan, having Snape kill him without ownership of the Wand passing from him. Brilliant.
  • Snape dissing Tonks's Patronus (which he called "weak") is a two-pronged barb, when you think about it. On the face of it, it comes across as implying that Lupin is weak, because her new Patronus is wolf-like to demonstrate her feelings for him. But if you think back to how Patronuses are conjured up (happy thoughts and memories), it could also be taken as more of a warning than an insult: Snape's way of saying that Tonks's affection for Lupin, with which she calls the Patronus up, is doomed to disappointment. Considering how, if not for Harry, Lupin might've abandoned her, Snape's cheap shot wasn't entirely off the mark, either! How like Snape, to express a rather shrewd insight into others' limitations by talking multi-layered smack about them.
    • Snape also calls Tonks' patronus weak because he sees himself as weak. Tonks' patronus changed due to her love of Remus. Snape's patronus changed because of his love for Lily. Snape dissing Tonks' patronus change is only dissing himself.
  • Snape has been calm throughout the book series, and even angry Snape doesn't raise his voice higher than normal volume. However, at the end of HBP, Snape is shouting at Harry while escaping with the death eaters. With the reveal that Snape has been a double agent all along in mind, Snape is acting so the death eaters don't question his leaving. It seems to work, though it brings to mind more Fridge Logic: would't the death eaters notice when he never acts like that again for the rest of the series?
  • When Harry and Dumbledore are visiting memories, Dumbledore knows that Tom Riddle's friends are in the Hog's Head. Why? Because the Barkeep of the Hog's Head is his brother!
  • The name of the chapter in which Dumbledore dies? The Lightning-Struck Tower. Commonly called The Tower in modern Tarot decks, this card is one of the most feared (along with the Death card). It talks about a sudden realization, loss, a Broken Pedestal. And even more so, several decks' illustration for the Tower shows people falling/being thrown out of a tower. All of this happens in the chapter: Dumbledore was killed via an Avada Kedavra that looks suspiciously like a lightning strike, thrown off the Astronomy tower, and this causes the aforementioned feelings in Harry. Also one to the readers as well. Admit it, most of us probably held a Like You Would Really Do It attitude towards Rowling killing off Dumbledore until it hit us in the face.
  • Harry becomes a Karma Houdini in the movie version of Half-Blood Prince (he runs off before Snape can punish him for using Sectumsempra on Draco). Why? Because it changes his motivation for getting rid of the Half-Blood Prince's book - he's not hiding it because he doesn't want Snape to confiscate it; he's hiding it because he doesn't want anyone (not even himself) to be tempted by the dark magic in the book.
  • Remember how Ron has always craved attention and admiration? Well, in this book/movie he gets what he it: In the form of the lovestruck girl, Lavender Brown. Then, he gets the hint of how downright annoying it can be to always get attention. In a way, Lavender was a physical aesop on the lesson "be careful what you wish for".
  • After Harry takes the luck potion to get the memory from Slughorn, he is guided in a roundabout and unpredictable path to get his goal. It's odd though that he bumps Ginny Weasley on his way through the portrait hole under his invisibility cloak. Why would he, when he has perfect luck to prevent it? But ...that bump helped break Ginny and Dean Thomas up, a hidden desire of Harry's. Of COURSE he bumped her, he wanted them to break up, and the luck potion made it happen.
  • After Harry learns it was Snape who relayed the prophecy to Voldemort, Harry asks Dumbledore how he can be sure a talented Occlumens like Snape is on the right side. Dumbledore considers for a moment before replying that he trusts Snape completely. Dumbledore wasn't reconsidering whether he trusts Snape he does but whether explaining why he does in order to reassure Harry would be worth breaking his word to Snape never to reveal certain facts.
  • Hermione outright says that she was going to ask Ron to Slughorn's Christmas Party. This is in contrast to Book 4 where she waited around hoping Ron would ask her. She's likely copped on to how clueless he is by now.

    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 
  • Ginny is the most logical person for Harry to marry. A somewhat important subplot in the books is Harry's relationship with the Weasleys, to the point where they might as while be his family. If Harry had married somebody else, he wouldn't be part of the Weasely family anymore, and that connection would be lost.
  • You have to admire Rowling's strategy when it comes to explaining Harry's rebirth - she pulls it off by creating a situation that probably had never, ever happened before in the history of wizardkind. Nobody could possibly know what would happen when one human being first made five Horcruxes THEN offering a woman to spare her if she allowed him to kill her child (which he had never done before), THEN killing that woman (placing Harry under the blood protection), THEN trying to kill that child with a curse that had never failed before, THEN having his soul spontaneously split when the spell rebounded, THEN the part of the soul that split away taking refuge into the nearest living being (Harry), THEN the still free soul possessing another man and fighting with the living vessel and being defeated, THEN using the human Horcrux's blood in a resurrection ritual, THEN trying to kill the human Horcrux again with the same spell that failed before, THEN joined with that human Horcrux through a paired-wand bond in which he was determined to be the weaker one, THEN trying to kill that human Horcrux a third time, THEN possessing him, THEN using another person's wand to try to avoid the paired-wand bond and failing as the other person's wand breaks, THEN trying to kill that human Horcrux as he attempts to do a Heroic Sacrifice to save his friends, THEN having that human Horcrux survive AGAIN, and finally trying to kill him AGAIN by using a wand that has been said many times to be unable to fight against its owner. All in all, a VERY long chain of events that are very unlikely to be repeated in the same form ever again.
  • The symbolism of the wands. There's the thestral tail hair in the Elder Wand. Voldemort's wand was made of Yew, the whole "death tree symbolism", but his and Harry's wands were connected by the same phoenix, the bird of rebirth - the whole "horcruxes of each other" thing, with the core being the same phoenix and all - connected, and Harry's wand was made of Holly, connected to rebirth in several mythologies, including Christianity, to mirror Voldemort's wand. Because even though they both come back, Harry's the one who ultimately lives.
  • Sure, it was easy enough to accept that Snape hated Neville because he was a Gryffindor, he was incompetent, and he was available, but it wasn't until some time after reading Deathly Hallows his particular hatred for Neville was due to his belief that if Neville had been the Chosen One named in the prophecy - that if Voldemort had decided to attack the Longbottoms instead of the Potters - Lily would still be alive.
  • The seventh book shows Snape's hatred for Harry in a different light. Not only did Harry have his mother's eyes and look like his father (reinforcing the bond they had and the fact that Snape would never see Lily again), but he also might have been Snape's son in a different world. Hard to be friends with a kid like that.
  • If you read "The Prince's Tale" with the mindset of "Snape views Dumbledore as a father figure" (which, considering Snape's real father, is not that far-fetched of an assumption), it adds a whole new dimension to Snape's resentment of Harry: Snape is very much the "Well Done, Son" Guy, constantly putting his life on the line for Dumbledore and doing everything he asks, which condemns him to a life of being hated by the entire Wizarding World when he kills Dumbledore, while Harry (in Snape's mind) will do much of the same and be worshipped by the Wizarding World, because everyone wants to see Voldemort killed. (Unfortunately, this makes Dumbledore seem pretty cold and even more manipulative than he already is, because it reads as though he deliberately took advantage of Snape's desperation for approval by a father-figure and tormented him with it.)
  • Given that both are Muggle-borns and teen geniuses, Snape's nasty treatment of Hermione might not be just because he's a jerkass, but also because she reminds him of Lily, and he's probably angered by her friendship with Harry (who, of course, reminds him of James Potter).
  • Take a good look at the prophecy lines "marked as his equal" and "has power he knows not". First, consider that Harry was a Horcrux, which meant he couldn't kill Voldemort without dying first, whereas Voldemort clearly had no such restriction... making them not necessarily equals. Secondly, due to Voldemort's obsessive belief that Harry was the chosen one, it meant that he disregarded most everyone else's abilities as irrelevant. Now look at Neville, who 1) would be free to defeat Voldemort without dying, and 2) clearly not deemed as important to Voldemort, would possess abilities which Voldemort did not know what they were. In short, up until the very end, it was still up in the air exactly whom the prophecy applied to.
  • In Prisoner of Azkaban, Professor Trelawney is wary of sitting at the Christmas dinner table, as it would mean that there were thirteen people there, and when thirteen sit at a table, the first to rise would be the first to die. This is played for laughs when Harry and Ron get up at the same time (although, come to think of it, Harry did die first), but in Deathly Hallows, there are thirteen people sitting down mourning Moody's death. Lupin rises first to offer to locate the body. Lupin is killed at the Battle of Hogwarts, and is the first of the thirteen to die.
  • In the epilogue, Harry's son is worried that he'll be in Slytherin. His name is Albus Severus Potter, making his initials A.S.P. Therefore, it would actually be quite appropriate for him to be in Slytherin. Stealth Pun?
  • . Snape's last words are "look at me", directed at Harry. He wants the last thing he sees to be Lily's eyes. *sniffle*
  • Deathly Hallows and its long stretches of the protagonists camping out while on the run. Rowling likes to borrow from somewhat obscure English popular fiction (such as the school story), and this kind of setting/plot is a lot like The 39 Steps and Rogue Male - same idea of a sinister force threatening England in a Day of the Jackboot way and camping while on the run.-
  • In Deathly Hallows, the subtlety of the exact moment that Harry reveals himself to be alive in the Great Hall toward the end of the battle? It was right as Molly Weasley killed Bellatrix. Then Voldemort stopped fighting McGonagall, Kingsley, and Slughorn and turned toward Molly. Of all the friends he had fighting in the battle, why stop the battle to help Molly? Consider Order of the Phoenix, where Molly tells Sirius that Harry is "as good as" a son to her. When Harry sees Molly's boggart, it is flashing through images of her dead sons... and Harry is included. And, finally, in the beginning of Deathly Hallows, the gift of the watch. Because he was powerless to do so seventeen years ago, Harry is protecting the only mother he has ever known.
  • Unmarked Deathly Hallows Spoilers: In the seventh book, there comes a time when Voldemort is calling for Harry to be given up, and then no one will get hurt. Pansy steps up to say Harry should be given to Voldemort, and not one of the Slytherins stands against her. Now, some people see this as a DMoS for Jo, and she could have shown that Slytherin's aren't all evil and had some stand up for Harry, etc. But — how many of the Slytherins knew where their parents were? Their family members? Their loved ones? How many Slytherins had people they cared for with Voldemort, and potentially in danger if they helped the 'good guys'? It's actually really sad for them, because they don't necessarily know if it's safe for their families if they decide to step up for Harry, so they don't, whereas the other houses don't have that same stigma attached! /End Spoilers
  • We find out in the epilogue of Deathly Hallows that Neville became the herbology professor at Hogwarts. However, Word of God stated that he served briefly as an auror. Although he proved in the books to be adept at both herbology and auror-ing, this was a bit of a strange career change to make. But it would make perfect sense if he ever found out his wife Hannah was pregnant — Neville was probably worried about being in such a high-risk profession, not out of fear for his own safety, but because he didn't want his kids to grow up without a father the way he had to.
  • In Deathly Hallows, Ron is disguised as a ministry worker whose wife is a Muggleborn on trial, and as we all know, Ron later marries Hermione, who is a Muggleborn. No wonder it hits him so hard; he's in love with Hermione, and this parallel just brings it right home, reminding him of how much danger she's in just because of her blood status.
  • There was that whole stink about Moral Dissonance regarding Dumbledore training Harry to, essentially, kill him because of his Horcrux. But think about it... when did this training start? Book 5. What happened in book 4? The resurrection ritual, where Voldemort took Harry's blood. And there was a gleam of "something like triumph" in Dumbledore's eyes when Harry told him about it. Dumbledore only began training Harry when it became clear that Voldemort had made it impossible to kill Harry without killing himself, and Harry had a chance to "go back" and survive dying!
  • Harry's ultimate plan for the Elder Wand was to put it back where it was, and die a natural death undefeated in order to break its power. On the surface, and given Word of God that he becomes an Auror, this seems like a bad plan. But the Elder Wand's ownership passes from one owner to the other upon the first person's defeat or murder. The opponent doesn't even need to know what they'd done, as proven by both Harry and Malfoy doing it by accident. So in the event that Harry is ever defeated, possession would go to that person, and if that person were defeated, it would go to whoever beat him, and so on and so on until the Elder Wand's power is effectively broken by the simple fact that nobody knows who's supposed to be using the thing.
  • So Harry and Voldemort are the opposite of each other, right? Good vs evil, compassion vs heartlessness, life and death. According to TV Tropes's character page, Voldemort is 71 on the final book. What's Harry age on the seventh book? 17!
  • When Dumbledore leaves Harry the sword of Gryffindor in his will, Dumbledore knew Harry couldn't get it from his will, and that Harry would remember that the imbibed sword could kill Horcruxes. By putting it in his will and not letting Harry get to it, he was able to make Harry want to get it by making him believe that it was truly his, and then with the thoughts of getting the sword filling up his mind, he would remember that one fight in the Chamber of Secrets, and then remember that he can kill Horcruxes now. When the trio was lamenting about how they weren't very close to killing the Horcruxes as they were to finding them, they actually were getting closer by aiming to get the sword! OH, DUMBLEDORE!
  • The deaths of Voldemort, Snape, and Harry mirror that of the brothers in "The Tale of the Three Brothers" perfectly, right down to age order: The eldest, Voldemort, died because of power. The second, Snape, died for lost love. And the youngest, Harry, greeted Death like an old friend, willing and ready.
  • Lily's patronus was a female deer, without the antlers. James' patronus was a deer with antlers; therefor a male deer and the natural couterpart to Lily's deer. Snape's patronus was a deer without antlers; he loved her, symbolized by the same deer Lily had, but he could not be her natural counterpart, as James was.
  • During the sequence where Harry travels through Snape's memories, there's a scene where Snape asks Dumbledore why he destroyed the ring before calling him, and whether he thought destroying it might stop the curse. Dumbledore just sort of halfheartedly agreed to it. But since when has Dumbledore been mistaken about magic? No, the real reason he waited to call Snape was to destroy the Horcrux! The Sword of Gryffindor can only be used when it is needed or when the wielder has proven themselves worthy of the blade, and there's no evidence that Dumbledore ever proved he had the particular type of bravery needed to wield the sword—remember, while he was certainly brave, he was never the same kind of brave as Harry, Ron, or Neville; he was a genius, never put into a situation beyond his ability to handle, and in situations that were beyond his control, he seemed accepting, rather than defiant. So he had to take the blade because he needed to destroy this source of evil before he died. If he had waited for Snape to stop the curse, the condition of "need" would no longer have applied, and he couldn't have destroyed the Horcrux!
  • Voldemort's talk/showdown with Neville seems overemphasied,but remember- Neville could have been the chosen one, so he's facing the man who almost marked him as his equal!
  • During Voldemort's death scene in Deathly Hallows Part 2, the music playing is called Lily's Theme. Why is this important? Because the greatest Dark wizard of all time, in the end, was destroyed because a twenty-two-year-old mother refused to step aside and let her child die. Lily Potter vanquished Voldemort just as much as Harry did.
  • When Ron is given the Deluminator by Dumbledore in his will, one could think at first it is a sort of condescending gesture towards the supposedly least successful member of the Trio. Soon, he finds the Mundane Utility of the artifact, because turning off the lights can be useful in many situations. But then Ron discovers that it can be used to find his friends. Ron supposes that it is because Dumbledore thought he would leave his friends, but Harry sets him right: it's because he knew that he would come back. Then, when you realize that Dumbledore knows very well what can happen when you make a bad choice in anger and are unable to go back on it, and gave Ron the Deluminator to make sure that he didn't find himself in the same situation Dumbledore was so many years ago.
  • The scene where Harry enters Voldemort's camp in the woods to allow himself to be killed. Before Harry reveals himself, Voldemort seems extremely solemn, almost disappointed, that Harry hasn't shown up, whispering "I thought he would come ... I expected him to come". The odd thing is that Voldemort has spent the last three books basically calling Harry a Dirty Coward who lets everyone sacrifice themselves for him, so why would he expect Harry to willingly walk to the slaughter, and why such disappointment? But consider how Voldemort "sees death as a shameful human weakness", something all mere humans must inevitably submit to — exactly the idea that terrifies Voldemort, which he tries to rebel against. Proving himself mightier than death is how Voldemort (described plenty of times as a classic malignant narcissist) makes himself greater than any mere human, proving that he alone stands above human weakness. So if the cowardly little boy also has the strength to resist the call of death and not go humbly to the slaughter, it means Voldemort isn't standing above anyone. His narcissism is deflated and leaves him only as human as anyone else ... Voldemort's worst fear.
  • The murder of the Potters and Voldemort's first downfall happened on Halloween, also known as All Hallows Eve. Deathly Hallows? "Hallows" just means something sacred or "hallowed". All Hallows' Eve is said to be the night when the veil between our world and the other is thinnest, so spirits can travel more freely - perhaps foreshadowing that the four people who had the Killing Curse turned or rebounded on them that night would all come back in their own ways ( James and Lily return in spirit form in Books Four and Seven, Harry literally comes back, and Christ knows Voldemort can't seem to stay dead).
  • Saving Malfoy from The Fiendfyre in Room of Requirement. Knowing that Malfoy was a total jerk in the series, Harry's decision to save him was not convincing for Harry's goodness was not a satisfying enough reason. Then, looking past, during the Malfoy Manor, Malfoy's failure to confirm Harry Potter was technically saving Harry's life so it becomes more like I.O.U for saving Harry's life. Malfoy's incompetence as a death eater saved a crucial plot point.
  • It may or may not be deliberate, but at the beginning of the book George loses one ear. One part of an identical set. Then, near the end, Fred dies in battle. Again, one part of an identical set.
  • Voldemort's closeness with Nagini seems a little unusual, given that he's a narcisstic, sociopathic megalomaniac. But then you realize: As a Horcrux, Nagini is an extension of Voldemort. Nagini is Voldemort. Thus, when showing closeness with Nagini, Voldemort is showing closeness with... himself.
  • At the end of "Deathly Hallows: Part 2" what's the very last thing we, the audience hears? An unnamed and unseen child yelling, "Goodbye!" This very well could be a farewell from the filmmakers to those in the audience who started watching the series as little kids, and saw it all the way through to the very end...a piece of their childhood saying farewell at the end of a journey from one stage of life to another.
  • A small detail in the first film. During the scuffle with Rowle and Dolohov in the cafe, Ron is the one who angrily identifies the latter. Which Death Eater harmed Hermione the most in the Department of Mysteries back in OOTP?
  • It irritated many book readers that in the film version of Deathly Hallows, Voldemort is (like in the book) impacted with a rebound Killing Curse, but (unlike the book) dissolves into ashes instead of just being instantly killed and leaving a corpse. David Yates made this change because it works perfectly within the movie canon: this way, Voldemort's death mirrors that of Professor Quirrell in the first movie.
  • Wormtail dies by his own silver hand when he hesitates to kill Harry. All the way back in Goblet of Fire, when Voldemort gave him the silver hand to replace the one Wormtail gave up, he says to the healed Wormtail, 'May your faith never waver again.' Can't say ol' mouldy Voldy didn't warn him. -
  • In Deathly Hallows, when we see the trial of a muggle-born, the "justification" given is that she somehow must have "stole" her magic, and is thus not really a witch. In other words, Voldemort is running a reverse witch hunt.
  • In Chamber of Secrets, Harry tells Dobby "Just promise never to try and save my life again." In Deathly Hallows, Dobby dies while saving Harry's life.
  • Near the end of the series, Harry asked Dumbledore if the whole conversation at Kings Cross was real or just happening inside his head and Dumbledore answered, 'Of course it is happening inside your head, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?' This not only spoke as what Harry Potter means as a story but also what it means to write a story and J.K Rowling as a long time writer finishing a series would know it better than anyone and this is the time her emotions for this message was strongest. It relates to her as Harry Potter was a world happening inside her head but just because it wasn't tangible doesn't mean it's not real. For all of us, knowing that loving the characters is indeed loving something real as fictional characters aren't the text in a story, the drawings or even any actors who play them. They are the heart put into them, that for certain is real.
  • No where is the final line of the last book: "The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well." Now this seems like a happy ending, but why was Harry able to sense Voldemort? The piece of soul in him. SO that would mean that Harry is no longer a parseltongue, but it also means that he can no longer sense Voldemort. Which would mean that even if Voldemort rises again, Harry wouldn't be able to sense it.
  • Harry is able to cast a crucio on Amycus Carrow for spitting at McGonagall, but is unable to do more than mildly discomfit Bellatrix after she kills Sirius. Sure, he's a more powerful wizard by then and everyone has become just a little bit darker thanks to the times, but Bellatrix actually says that "righteous anger" is not enough to fuel the curse. It's natural and understandable, even justifiable (depending on your worldview) to hate and want to kill/inflict severe pain on someone who kills a beloved father-figure. Wanting to inflict that pain on someone for spitting on someone? Much darker and, well, they're called the Dark Arts for a reason.
  • When Harry wakes up after Voldemort's Killing Curse, he's on another version of Platform Nine and Three Quarters. Where can he go from there? Into the afterlife, or back to his life, the magical world. From the normal, actual Platform Nine and Three Quarters, he can either go to the magical world, or to the Dursleys. So, basically, Dursleys to Wizarding World like Wizarding World to Afterlife? Might be a hint how life after death in that universe looks like, or, if we go with heaven - compared to the Dursleys, the Wizarding World is heaven.
  • Luna helping drive off the dementor swarm during the battle becomes even more impressive when you consider that, like Harry, she would probably be particularly badly affected by them because of having witnessed her mother's death at a young age. Admittedly, she seems to have mostly come to terms with it, but that may not matter with dementors, since they seem to make you relive your worst memory as it happened.
  • You know how the Prophecy said that Voldemort would mark the Chosen One as his equal? And how, at Hogwarts, kids call each other by their surname unless they are friends? Well, in Deathly Hallows, when Voldemort and Harry fight in the Great Hall, Harry calls Voldemort by his surname. In essence, Harry is treating Voldemort like another student, or, in other words, an equal.

Fridge Horror

    Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone 
  • In the first book, Fred and George throw snowballs at Professor Quirrel's turban. Only at the end do we find out that underneath that turban is the most dangerous dark wizard of all time.
  • The fact that three 11 year olds and a 12 year old (Hermione's birthday is mid-september) were sent into the Forbidden Forest to find a unicorn that had been badly hurt for being out after curfew. Hagrid even says that a werewolf wouldn't be able to do it. And as we learn in the next book, there's an entire colony of giant spiders in the forest! Oh, and Hagrid even tells them that "Yeh've done wrong an' now yeh've got ter pay fer it.'" when Harry and Hermione (and Ron in the movie) are in trouble for helping him! What the Hell, Hero? doesn't even begin to cover it!

    Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets 
  • Ron tries and fails to perform "Ferreverto" on Scabbers (turning him into a fuzzy goblet with a twitching tail instead of a crystal goblet). Funny at the time, right? Now... remember that little tidbit about Scabbers? That he's actually Peter Pettigrew in his Animagus form? Body Horror at it's finest! And Pettigrew would've known that Ron's wand was damaged and malfunctioning, yet would've had to play dumb and just sit there and wait to be transformed into what he could only hope was an intact goblet.
  • Throughout his time at Hogwarts, Tom Riddle was sent back to the orphanage during the summer holidays, and this notably upset him. According to Word of God, The Chamber of Secrets takes place during the 1992-93 school year, and the Chamber was originally opened fifty years before that, meaning circa 1942. Given that Riddle was a fifth year in 1942, that means he was repeatedly sent back to an orphanage in London during World War II
  • Dursleys are not just petty jerks, they're child abusers. Including, in the first two books, actively trying to prevent Harry from escaping so that they can continue to abuse him.
  • Dumbledore knows that Harry lives in the cupboard under the stairs, Dudley's second bedroom, and in book 2 even knows on the same night that Harry has been rescued by the Weasleys. He can't be unaware of the Dursleys' treatment, but apparently sees no need to intervene at any point during Harry's childhood. It would only have taken ten minutes a year for Dumbledore to pop over there and intimidate them into being decent, but he doesn't do that until Harry is sixteen (and they'd given up at the end of book 3). Basically Dumbledore seems okay with child abuse so long as it's not deadly—oh, and Harry doesn't come into Hogwarts with a big head. His guardians didn't have to encourage their son to beat Harry up every day in order to not grow up an egotistical prat, Albus.
  • A rather minor one, but consider Voldemort's preferred means of disposing of dead bodies, namely, feeding them to his pet snake. Now imagine what was in store for Ginny once Tom Riddle had returned to full strength with a Basilisk on hand.
  • Do we know whether or not the Basilisk can choose who it kills with its gaze? Because if it just kills ANYONE who stares it in the eye, what would happen if Draco happened upon it? Could it have killed him too? Lucius's level of evil or at least arrogance that he knows what he's doing is even more disturbing when you realize he let a monster loose in the school that could have killed HIS OWN SON, and he never showed any sign that he thought that Draco might be in danger. Not only was it capable of killing muggleborns, the basilisk could have killed ANYONE who looked into its eyes, including teachers as well as students! The ones who were petrified were extremely lucky, considering that their condition was able to be cured.
  • Anyone else notice that the developmental process for the Mandrakes included them throwing a party? Yes, it was a joke about teenage behavior, but it also suggests an unsettling degree of cognitive ability and emotion on the part of organisms that Professor Sprout was raising for the express purpose of cutting them into pieces and stewing them.
  • Lockhart specialized in erasing memories. He showed a clear lack of morals in wiping a piece of person's mind and was even willing to leave a young girl to die and destroy the minds of two boys ( and maybe leave them in the chamber to die as well). He was in a school for a year. Part of that year, the well-known, respected and sometimes feared headmaster was gone. It was perfectly acceptable for teachers to be alone and unsupervised with students, even extremely late at night (in Harry's dentention with him, it started at eight and lasted four hours and no one looked in once, even to point out how late it was and Harry had classes the next day or even to talk with Lockhart about something). So, alone with minors for significant periods of time, lacking morals and able to erase memories that could cause trouble for him. Eep!
  • During Harry's confrontation with the Apparition/Fragment of Voldemort's soul that has taken the form of his younger Tom Riddle self, Riddle!Voldemort mocks Hagrid, explaining why he was the perfect fall guy for the Heir of Slytherin because of his penchant for keeping monsters around him, like "werewolf cubs". Later we learn how werewolves are created in the Harry Potter world making this seem like an error. Fridge Horror kicks in even later when we learn of the sadistic Fenrir Greyback who bites young children, turning them into werewolves at a young enough age that he can easily indoctrinate them with hatred and contempt for "normal" wizards and witches. While it may not have been his work, this may have been the circumstances under which the "cubs" Hagrid sheltered came into being.
  • Lucius draws his wand on Harry after Harry frees Dobby. Listen to what he's snarling under his breath as he does so: "Avada". Harry was two seconds away from being murdered on Dumbledore's doorstep if it weren't for Dobby's intervention.
  • Dumbledore cancelling exams seems pretty sweet at the onset, but that has got to pay hell on the OWL and NEWT students. For the petrified kids, it's better than sitting an exam covering material they never learned, but the other, non-petrified students... Exams are created to prove proficiency and/or worth in a subject. How are they going to explain how everyone got the same grade with zero effort? Looks like Hermione wasn't just being a spoilsport.

    Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban 
  • Percy and Ron Weasley handled Peter Pettigrew's poop for 12 years and were likely naked in front of him.
    Ron: I let you sleep in my bed!
  • On the way to Hogwarts, at least one dementor searches the train. A creature that feeds on happiness and souls was in confined quarters with a few hundred emotional children and teenagers. Even worse, it's implied that there wasn't an auror or official around keeping an eye on it! What if Lupin didn't drive it off with a patronus?
  • One of the books Harry reads mentions the witch burnings and about how they were ineffective because any real witch or wizard would just cast a protective charm on themselves. Which is very nice... for the wizards whose captors helpfully left them their wands and the freedom to use their hands. For those who were searched and tied properly, on the other hand...
    • At least in later books, it's mentioned that magic can be cast without a wand.
  • Azkaban. Outside of school, they have fines, permanent loss of magical power, and soul torturing imprisonment that often drives people mad within weeks, making even the shortest sentence horrifying. What do they do to petty criminals? A fine? Permanent loss of their wands? Torturing them into madness?
  • When Snape forces the Marauder's Map to "reveal its secrets", it starts printing insulting text towards him. This is funny at the time, but when we learn what Snape's relationship with the Marauder's actually was, it's like they're bullying him all over again, and in front of Harry as well.
  • Toward the end of the Prisoner of Azkaban video game, the trio fight Peeves and cause him to fly away crying about the 'nasty kiddies', with Hermione commenting (paraphrased) "I hope we didn't hurt him TOO badly". This is the last time Peeves is seen in the video game series.
  • The scene where Sirius and Lupin interrogate Pettigrew and give him a Reason You Suck Speech starts out as well-deserved but gets scary after the two openly admit to planning to KILL Pettigrew, especially when we have every reason to believe that they would have done it, had Harry not intervened (admittedly, just to have Pettigrew submitted to a Fate Worse than Death in Azkaban and probably to clear Sirius' name by showing everyone the very person Sirius was supposed to have killed. This is hammered home by the Ministry of Magic song "Marauder's Map".)

    Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire 
  • All of the interactions between Neville and Mad-Eye Moody in the fourth book become horrifying when you find out that “Mad-Eye" was a fake, and was really Barty Crouch Jr. Long story short: Neville had tea with one of the Death Eaters who tortured his parents into permanent insanity, and he had no idea. Considering how eager he is in the fifth book to have a go at duelling/killing Bellatrix Lestrange, how would he have reacted if he'd have known who the fake Mad-Eye really was? Especially when you realise that the demonstration of the Unforgivable Curses was probably some deliberate, rather twisted attempt at Evil Gloating; he KNEW that Neville would react in the way that he did, so making him watch the spider being tortured was probably Barty displaying how it happened to Neville's parents.
  • With most of the Harry Potter novels, if you remove the fantastic elements from the climax, it doesn't mean all that much (the possible exception being the third book). But look at the end of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Now remove the magic. What you have is a fully-grown man tying up, humiliating, torturing, mocking, and otherwise tormenting a fourteen-year-old boy. While more adults stand by and watch.
  • We've seen that medical magic can achieve amazing cures that aren't possible for mundane science, from re-growing absent bones overnight to flawlessly re-attaching splinched body parts. Nevertheless, Mad-Eye Moody became crippled and horribly scarred over the course of his Auror's career. So what sort of over-the-top destructive forces caused so much damage to his face and leg, that even St. Mungo's couldn't repair? Or was he injured so badly that he couldn't even make it to a hospital for treatment, and had to lie there in agony for weeks while his burns healed non-magically? Nightmare Fuel, either way.
  • Minister Fudge brought a dementor into the school for protection. Not an auror, a dementor. A creature described as pure evil that devours happiness and souls! And when it executed Crouch Jr., everyone basically talked about how he couldn't testify why he did it. Nobody seemed to be bothered that a man was just given a summary execution (that is, an execution without a trial)!
  • It is possible to subject somebody else to a Magical Binding Contract against his will. How? By simply putting his/her name in the Goblet of Fire! Dumbledore even admits it's possible that somebody else put Harry's name in the Goblet. So, you can force somebody (even a first-year student) to participate in a very dangerous event, and if he doesn't, he will die! And Dumbledore, the most brilliant wizard of all time and caretaker of all the students at Hogwarts, didn't even think of some counter-measures and just allowed it!
  • Sirius has been living off rats. Peter's animagus form is a rat. Sirius really wants Peter dead. Make of all that what you will.

    Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix 
  • Consider this one. In the fifth book, Harry sees a vision of Sirius being attacked, then proceeds to freak out and do everything in his power to go save him. When Hermione tells him that he needs to verify that Sirius is actually missing first, he hatches a plot to sneak into Umbridge's office and use her fire to check if Sirius is at headquarters. This leads to the entire climax, and ultimately Sirius' death.
  • In Order of the Phoenix, Dolores Umbridge is not shown to be a particularly talented witch, being utterly unable to combat Fred and George's wild array of spells, but she has complete confidence in her ability to cast the Cruciatus Curse (described as a very hard curse to bring off) on Harry. The most likely explanation? She's had plenty of practice using it before.
  • The listing of floors at St. Mungo's suggests that the hospital is equipped to deal with every possible kind of magical malady, but not to deal with common mundane ailments such as heart disease, diabetes, or cancer. Going by Ron's reaction to the word, wizards don't have any faith in Muggle doctors' capabilities, and none of them know any mundane biology beyond what a ten-year-old Muggle would've been taught, so if a wizard or witch comes down with a non-magical illness, they're going to be stuck with whatever crude home remedy their medically-ignorant families can whip up. Mrs. Crouch's terminal illness might well have been averted if she'd ever thought to go to a Muggle hospital.
    • However there is some indication that wizards are pretty resilient against mundane physical threats, their innate magic acting to protect them. For instance, a young Neville is saved from death-by gravity when his latent magic causes him to bounce off the ground instead of splatting. Harry too is pritected by his innate magic before he ever knows he even has it - chased by bullies, he flies or apparatus to a place of safety. Since we never see wizards or witches suffering from mundane maladies, it's reasonable to infer that magic works without the bearer's conscious effort to protect them from illness as it does from injury.
  • The love room in the Department of Mysteries sounds tame enough, but it's been permanently locked with extremely powerful enchantments. Which brings up the question: why is it there if it's not used? The answer is that something went wrong in there that was so horrible that they can't chance going in there ever again. Remember, love in the Potterverse is an extremely powerful magical force. And as they say in the Narnia books, good does not mean safe. Especially when contrasted with the Veil of Death, which is not under additional lock and key.
  • The more you learn about Sirius Black's life, the more horrifying it gets. Recap: he grew up with an awful, racist, emotionally abusive family that treated him like a disgrace (and had Bellatrix Lestrange over for dinner). At the age of 16, he ran away from home to live with James Potter. A year or two later, he graduated Hogwarts and joined the Order of the Phoenix at the height of Voldemort's power, when he was picking off those who opposed him one by one. Then one of his friends betrayed Sirius' best friends/surrogate family to Voldemort, framed him for it, and got him sent to a prison where he spend the next twelve years reliving his worst memories. Of which there were probably quite a few, by this time. He broke out, managed to prove his innocence to his remaining living friend and godson, then was forced to go on the run again. Finally, he spent the last year of his life shut up in the very house he ran away from as a teenager, unable to take part in the fight against Voldemort because the rest of the world still thought he was a Death Eater who had betrayed his best friend to Voldemort, alone except for Buckbeak, his memories of Azkaban, and an alcohol problem. When you look at it, the best years of Sirius' life honestly seem to be in the midst of a war and on the run eating rats.
  • The students claimed they had "Umbridgeitis", ie: Umbridge made them sick, or they were sick of her. Either way. . .

    Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince 
  • The scene involving Harry making Dumbledore drink the potion was nasty enough to begin with, but it becomes much worse when you realize what that potion actually does, as hinted by the flashbacks in Deathly Hallows: It makes you live through your worst memories over and over, presumably worse each time. -The Great Unknown
  • Amortentia, Love Potion, is, essentially, a magical date-rape drug. They distribute these openly. ~KCS
  • During Half-Blood Prince and Deathly Hallows, there's an army of Dementors "breeding" all over Britain and no one controlling them. Not only that, there's no spell described in the books that can actually kill them (a Patronus just repels them) and Word of God says they're immortal.
  • Fenrir Greyback is a werewolf who tries to bite as many people as possible, in order to get enough werewolves to overcome the wizards. He specializes in biting children, even putting himself close to them so he'll infect them when the moon turns full. There are some very deliberate parallels with pedophilia, but the metaphor gets even more horrifying when you learn or remember that victims of pedophiles have a higher chance of becoming molesters themselves. Now think about what this means for Lupin.
  • The Sectumsepmpra spell which almost made Draco bleed out is noted as "for enemies"by its creator...Gee, I wonder who those enemies were? Answer? Sirius and James.

    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 
  • If Voldemort actually won, the wizarding world wouldn't be the only place in danger, considering his hatred of Muggles and half-blood types. If left unchecked he honestly may have attempted to take out everyone on the planet that wasn't in tune with what he wanted. Genocide on a mass scale.
  • In Deathly Hallows Part 1, Hermione finds the bloody room and Nagini inside of Bathilda. Killing with Avada Kedavra doesn't leave any blood, so what Hermione saw was likely the aftermath of Voldemort flaying Bathilda so Nagini could hide in the skin. And since nobody knew precisely when Harry was going to head to Godric's Hollow, that body could have been decomposing for months.
  • In The Deathly Hallows, Luna is kidnapped and kept at Malfoy Manor for months! Considering that Bellatrix and Greyback (a sadist with a history of attacking children) had took residence there, imagine what she must have been through.
  • When Dolores Umbridge resurfaces in Book 7, she is seen with several fully corporeal Patronuses. Now, as Book 3 stated over and over again, the basis for creating a corporeal Patronus is a fair bit of magical power combined with thinking happy thoughts. So Umbridge, being the evil Witch with a Capital B that she was (pun completely intended), got her Patronus-jollies from sentencing people to A Fate Worse Than Death. Voldemort might have been the most powerful dark wizard, but Umbridge just on the strength of her pure sadism was a villainous Badass Normal.
  • In Deathly Hallows, Harry successfully casts Crucio on a Death Eater. Think about what this means. The spell causes pain of a magnitude so great that enough time under it can drive the victim into permanent insanity. According to the text, you have to sincerely want to cause another person this amount of pain in order for the spell to work. And you have to go on wanting it while you watch your victim writhing on the floor and shrieking in mind-shattering agony. Harry's only response after casting it successfully is to murmur, "Bellatrix was right. You have to really mean it." Brrrrr.
    • This could be a case of misunderstood Fridge Brilliance in disguise. Harry knocks Carrow through the air, whereupon the death eater falls unconscious. Crucio very clearly doesn't knock people unconscious, or even send them flying—just the pain. So in saying that you "really have to mean it," Harry might be acknowledging the fact that he didn't actually cast the curse successfully, and doesn't have it in him to do so, even when presented with such an obvious and available symbol of everything he hates.
  • The Fate of Umbridge. Harry knocks her out, extinguishing her Patronus, and leaves her, unconscious, in a room full of Dementors.
    • Word of God said that she ended up convicted for crimes against muggleborns and locked in Azkaban, so it should be assumed that she survived that, soul intact.
  • This is more of a Fridge Tear Jerker, but by the end of Deathly Hallows Andromeda Tonks has lost both her husband and her daughter in the space of a few months. Poor thing.
  • What happened to Dumbledore's sister decades before the time the story is set? We are just told that when she was a small child, too young to have any control over her magic, some muggle boys saw her doing magic and were very frightened. So they "wanted to make her feel powerless" in retaliation — Details of what they did are not given, but it left her permanently and severely psychologically damaged. Implication made even worse by how young she was.
    • And to add to that, Dumbledore's father was sent to Azkaban for going after those boys after they attacked her.
  • When you are a kid the fact that Slytherins are bad people is easy to accept. But when you grow up you realize that 25% of the school population are seen as evil by everyone else from their 11th birthday. No surprise that Voldemort had so many followers there : they probably don't have anyone else.
  • Moody's body must have been discovered by agents of the Ministry, as his eye turns up on Umbridge's door. He never has a funeral, however, as the Ministry doesn't want the public to know it's lost one of its most formidable Aurors. Just days later, the Ministry falls under Voldemort's control, when Mad-Eye's corpse is probably still being held in a Ministry-run morgue. We know the bad guys make use of Inferi...
    • Moody only had one leg. They probably wouldn't have bothered.
  • In the film, at the Battle of Hogwarts, there was one scene where a group of Death Eaters Zerg Rush across a bridge while shouting "DEEAATH!". Since none of them use magic, it seems really stupid. But we already know the Death Eaters use the Imperius Curse, and in the sixth book, we hear that they use it on Muggles too, since one of Prime Minister John Major's associates had to be locked up. That group that was Zerg Rushing the bridge? Those were Muggles who had been brainwashed to act as cannon fodder. They had no idea what they were doing.
  • In Part 2, it’s strange that Draco, Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy walked away from the battle, across what must've been a damage bridge instead of Disapparating, like the other Death Eaters to who fled the scene, but none of them are carrying a wand by that time. Lucius' wand was snapped when Voldemort used it against Harry in Part 1, Draco's wand was currently being wielded by Harry and Narcissa's wand was incinerated by Fiendfyre in the Room of Hidden Things. - FallenAngelII

    Unsorted Fridge Horror 
  • Unsorted because it really applies to two books. In book one, the Dursleys said that they meant to 'squash' the magic out of Harry with years of abuse. Come book six we meet the Gaunts, where we learn that such a thing is all too possible.
  • The very concept of the Wizarding World is Fridge Horror. Think about it. A bunch of people, who at best either know nothing about us at all or regard us in an extreamly condescending way, secretly Mind Rape us into not realizing they exist. And then they say we deserve not to know based on the logical fallacy that we wouldn't "believe" in magic sufficiently enough anyway, whatever that's supposed to mean.
    • Hagrid's reply to Harry when he asks why [the Wizarding World is hidden from the normal world] is that people would want magical solutions for all their problems, and it's a perfectly reasonable claim.
  • You know how "Avada Kedavra" sounds a lot like "Abra Kedabra"? The obvious implication is that someone heard the phrase, didn't know it's implications but knew it sounded/meant something awesome, and it got passed onto fake magicians as a catch phrase. The horror comes from the fact that it's now a common catch phrase and analogous to the sound of a magic gun going off. In book 7, dark wizards could accidentally return fire on muggle kids who scream it too loudly. Inquisitors are bound to shackle up street performers who use it in gambling alleyways (remember that inquisitors live long and leave their atticks clean of pop-culture, Holmes style). AND NOW HAPPY-GO-LUCKY TRICK MAGICIANS AROUND THE WORLD ARE CONSTANTLY SAYING "PLEASE #$%^ THIS SAWED WOMAN TO DEATH".
    • Let's think for a moment about how the wizarding world as a whole behaved in the past, if the one phrase almost everyone associates with magic is a corrupted form of the words of an unblockable deathspell. And . .. with Lockhart and a few others, we are shown quite well what unscrupulous wizards can do, and do routinely. Suddenly, the efforts of the Holy Inquisition in rooting them out seem genuinely heroic, in the universe Rowling has written.
  • Consider the following: Voldemort had an army. In order for someone to have an army - and to even spend some time with power in their hands - there has to be at least some measurable degree of support. In the real world, even the most horrid regimes are supported, if not by a majority, by a loud and not-too-small minority of the people in it - or they would simply fall apart in a few days rather than in a few years. It must, in short, be politically viable. So, Voldemort might be a very powerful wizard, yes, but he only gathered an army and managed to actually control things for a while because his ideology is politically viable in that particular environment. Meaning that, unless there was a purge of sorts (and these aren't exactly foolproof, nor necessarily much of a way to keep the moral high ground) or something, his ideas are still shared by quite a lot of people, some of whom have money and/or political/magical power (the Malfoys being the most iconic example, and they clearly lived through the first war). Said people might, in that setting, try and get into power by hook or by crook in the future.
  • Certain pure-blood families would rather have members marry their own cousins than Muggle-borns or half-bloods. Now we know why Crabbe and Goyle are so dumb.
  • Harry never goes beyond "mediocre wizard" at best... and he was never supposed to. Harry Potter is a story about an average boy who was inexplicably targeted by a terrorist (because of a prophecy) when really he's not worth being a blip on Voldemort's radar. The story wasn't about the rise of a hero — it was about a kid getting caught up in events that he couldn't handle (just like most kids today couldn't handle either). Realizing that made me be a bit less irritated with the last three books in general.
  • The Killing Curse is this when you consider that wizards aren't any less likely than Muggles to be serial killers or mass murderers. Someone could suddenly die one day, and without witnesses, nobody knows what happened to them or who killed them, or who the killer could be. The killer could keep right on going until they got caught, got tired of killing, or died themselves. We've already seen Wizarding law enforcement officials duping Muggles into thinking Muggle victims simply died of gas leaks or heart attacks. This is, of course, assuming that the magic doesn't leave a trace somehow, which would enable wizards to figure out that the victim was in fact murdered, but it still wouldn't leave any clues as to who the killer is. Someone could kill off loads of people just because they can't get caught unless there are witnesses, or other circumstantial clues that would point to a possible suspect.
    • This actually occurred in universe: Tom Riddle murdered his own family, at least one of his customers, and possibly other unknown people before anyone even suspected him of wrongdoing. It’s likely that only Dumbledore and Harry are even aware of his early murders.
  • Polyjuice Potion. By drinking it you will become a perfect copy of the original person, even taking over the eye-sight. It can have some horrible consequences, like somebody else posing as you to commit a crime. But, this also means that your privacy is gone. You want to know what a person looks like naked? Drink his/her potion! Stalkers would love it...
  • Dumbledore was confident that the only known relic of Gryffindor (the sword) was always well out of reach of Voldemort, but he was wrong. There was one more object at Hogwarts that once belonged to Gryffindor... the Sorting Hat! The hat itself mentions that it was originally Gryffindor's and it would have been fantastic as a Horcrux, allowing a piece of Voldemort's soul to peek into the hearts and minds of every student who passed through the school! It's a damn good thing Dumbledore never gave Voldemort that teaching position because had the hat been or become his true target, the story could have potentially ended very differently.
  • The whole Wizarding world (or at least British Wizarding), depending on one's interpretation of what we see. This society is presented as class- and caste-ridden; stagnant and insular. Voldemort was able to rise to political and magical dominance twice over the course of a few decades - which is like Hitler turning out to be alive in the early sixties and enacting the same political rise and war that he did the first time round. Voldemort is supported by the same people for the same reasons. The Wizarding world, apparently, completely failed to change to address the problems that allowed for Voldemort's success the Iraq time round (which is to say it's caste systems, it's elitism, it's insularity, it's conservatism). These problems are acknowledged in the series and recognised by the characters; the Fridge Horror comes in when we read the 'happy ending' and see that once again, this society has withstood massive turmoil and tragedy unaltered. The same problems are still firmly in place, cosy conservatism winning out over the progressive or challenging points made earlier in the series. The Hogwarts Houses are still creating fear and division amongst young people, Wizard society is till secret and separate from Muggle society for reasons that seem to be more about fear and elitism ton logic, there's no sign of non-human magical races being any more involved or respected in Wizard life. Wizard society is cursed with rigidity and stagnation, and doomed to repeat its mistakes indefinitely.


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