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Literature: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

"You are blinded ... by the love of the office you hold, Cornelius! You place too much importance, and you have always done, on the so-called purity of blood! You fail to recognize that it matters not what someone is born, but what they grow up to be!"
Albus Dumbledore

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is the fourth book in the Harry Potter series. Published July 8, 2000, this was the first book in the series to be heralded in with release parties as "Pottermania" took hold.

Following the events of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Voldemort now has a loyal follower by his side and is making plans to become stronger and regain his body. Meanwhile, before school starts, Harry and the Weasleys attend the Quidditch World Cup. At school, Hogwarts is hosting the Triwizard Tournament between three Wizarding schools in Europe, and Harry discovers that he has been selected to compete, even though he is below the age restriction and did not, as a matter of fact, actually apply as a candidate. He begins to fear that he's a pawn in someone else's plan, whilst becoming slowly more aware of the rising specter of Voldemort...

This book was a turning point in the series in a lot of ways.

  • It's the first book to even mention that there is a wizarding world outside of Great Britain, much less international magical politics. The scale of the story opens up in proportion to the plot.
  • It's the first Doorstopper; twice as long as the books that preceded it.
  • It's the point which Cerebus Syndrome sets in, as Voldemort returns to power due to their failure to capture Pettigrew at the end of Prisoner of Azkaban, while a significant supporting character ends up becoming a Sacrificial Lion... the first of many.
  • Finally, as stated above, it's the first book in the series that arrived after Pottermania had gripped the world, making its release a major event in the year's entertainment calendar.

Followed by Harry's fifth year at Hogwarts, in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Tropes exclusive to this book or at least especially prominent:

  • 8.8:invoked Karkaroff gives Harry's performance in the first task a 4/10, in contrast to the 8s and 9s from the more impartial judges (and Bagman's definitely partial 10). Naturally this provokes outrage from Ron, but Harry doesn't mind too much; he's too happy that Ron is speaking to him again.
  • Academy of Evil: Durmstrang, though the school itself is more of a Dark Is Not Evil place.
  • Accidental Misnaming: Crouch can't seem to remember that Percy's last name is "Weasley" and not "Weatherby". Fred and George have a lot of fun with this.
  • Agony Beam: This book introduces the Cruciatus Curse.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Bartemius Crouch, Jr.
  • Anachronism Stew: A minor case: at the beginning of the book, Harry, in writing a letter to Sirius, makes a remark about Dudley and his PlayStation… in the summer of 1994. Even in Japan, the console did not get released until December of that year.
    • Some fans brush this one off in that the game Dudley wants for it "Mega-Mutilation Part Three" is fictional itself, thus perhaps adding to an Alternate Universe PlayStation release date.
  • Army of the Dead: Voldemort's most recent victims (Harry's parents among them) emerge from his wand and block him from pursuing Harry just long enough for Harry to escape.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: During the first Defense Against the Dark Arts lesson.
    "You need to be prepared. You need to be alert and watchful. You need to put that away, Miss Brown, when I'm talking."
    Lavender jumped and blushed. She had been showing Parvati her completed horoscope under the desk.
  • Artistic License - Biology: In-universe example. In order to make Hagrid look bad to Rita Skeeter, Malfoy claims that in addition to being attacked by Buckbeak, Crabbe also got a bad bite off of a flobberworm. Which mainly eat lettuce, don't have any teeth, and have a X (boring) classification from the Ministry of Magic.
  • Ascended Extra: Cedric Diggory and Cho Chang, both introduced as background characters in Book 3, have central roles in this book.
  • Asshole Victim: Barty Crouch, Sr., who is found in the woods insane and begging to speak to Dumbledore but then vanishes and is revealed to have been killed.
    • Also, Tom Riddle Sr. and his parents. It's clear the residents of Little Hangleton think of them of elitist snobs (and Book 6 further confirms it). But they certainly didn't deserve to die at the hands of a burgeoning Dark Wizard.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Voldemort's plan to resurrect himself using Harry's blood goes off almost perfectly, aside from Harry escaping.
  • Badass Teacher: Moody. The fake one does a good job at acting the part, and the real one would have been one too if he'd been able to do the job.
  • Bags of Letters: people Rita Skeeter attacks in her Daily Prophet articles, such as Hagrid, Hermione and Harry himself, tend to receive large amounts of hate mail.
  • Beam-O-War: A rare effect (their two wands have the same core from the same specific specimen of phoenix) makes Harry's and Voldemort's wands connect and results in an anime-style beam-of-war battle. At the time of writing, Harry and Voldemort supply the page image for the trope.
  • Big Bad: Barty Crouch, Jr.
  • Blind Mistake: When Harry reads a letter sent by Sirius and considers its tone too much babying, his response hints at this: "You'd think I walk around with my eyes shut, banging off the walls...."
  • Blood Magic
  • Brainwashed: Averted. Notice how interested Harry's Defense Against Dark Arts teacher is that he can resist the Imperious curse. This is important in two ways. First, it rules out Barty Crouch using it on Harry in his plans for the book. Secondly, it means the reader can rest easy for the rest of the series - Harry is not and will never be under Mind Control.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Near the end of Goblet of Fire, Harry has been disarmed, gagged, and tied securely to a gravestone. Rather than simply killing Harry after using his blood to regain his body, Voldemort not only has Wormtail cut him loose and give him back his wand, but insists on fighting him in a one-to-one duel and forbids interference from any of his Death Eaters, for no other reason than to prove, once and for all, that he is the stronger of the two. The final result of this is that Harry manages to escape Voldemort's attempt on his life, once again through luck, and warn everyone of his resurrection. It was reasonable of Voldemort to assume that Harry was no longer protected by love, but he was unaware of the twin cores. However, Voldemort does use Harry's escape to his advantage in Order of the Phoenix.
    • Rowling stated that the reason for Voldemort's downfall was mainly because of his over-inflated ego. This scene was foreshadowing all the pride-related mistakes he'd make in the future. Also, Ralph Fiennes mentioned something about how the scene — when you strip the magic elements away — is really just a man humiliating a young boy. Voldemort was gloating over having his body back and wanted to mess with the kid who'd caused him so much trouble over the years. He wasn't exactly using his head at that moment.
    • Averted by Barty Crouch Jr. Not only does he masquerade as Moody for an entire year and fool Dumbledore, Moody's oldest friend, but every single aspect of his plan goes off without a hitch... until Voldemort screws it up by not immediately killing Harry, as Crouch had assumed he would.
  • Brick Joke: In one of the first chapters, it is mentioned that a Hufflepuff girl tried to curse her pimples off, and had to have her nose put on again. Later, when the Trio are discussing Yule Ball date possibilities, that same girl is mentioned. Ron says he won't go with her, because her nose is slightly off-center. Mentioned again in the Yule Ball chapter, only to confirm that her nose is perfectly fine!
  • Broken Pedestal: Played with. Krum's not revealed as different or anything but rather Ron gets angry about him dating Hermione.
  • Captain Obvious: "The cup is a Portkey."
  • Censor Suds: The prefect bathtub is loaded with suds and bubbles, which come in handy when Moaning Myrtle decides to drop in on Harry.
  • Character Death: Cedric.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The series has its own page. Voldemort's agent even tries planting one - the book about magical water-plants he gives Neville - well in advance of Harry needing it. This backfires when Harry, not knowing he's in a book, has no reason to remember it.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: A minor example. Hermione informs us that Parvati has a twin sister - when previously there had only been mention of "a pair of twin girls" with the last name Patil in the first book - several chapters before she is Ron's date for the Yule Ball.
  • Child Prodigy: Viktor Krum technically. He's been playing Quidditch long enough to be well known as an international star - but he's only seventeen and hasn't left school yet.
  • Christmas Carolers: As part of the Yule Ball, the Hogwarts suits of armor are enchanted to sing Christmas Carols, but they only seem to know half of the words. Peeves the Poltergeist took to hiding in them and making up his own versions to fill the gaps.
  • Completely Unnecessary Translator: The foreign officials to Fudge at the Quidditch game.
    “Vell, ve fought bravely,” said a gloomy voice behind Harry. He looked around; it was the Bulgarian Minister of Magic.
    “You can speak English!” said Fudge, sounding outraged. “And you’ve been letting me mime everything all day!”
    “Vell, it vos very funny,” said the Bulgarian minister, shrugging.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: "Draco Malfoy, the amazing bouncing ferret."
  • *Cough* Snark *Cough*: Ron accuses Hermione of only liking Cedric because he's handsome. When Hermione claims she doesn't like people just because of their looks, he gives a false cough that sounds oddly like "Lockhart".
  • Covert Pervert: Moaning Myrtle.
    • In a throw away line, Crouch!Moody is said to have his magic eye track some girls going past. This is creepier on the second read-through, considering he's a guy who spent most of the previous ten years imprisoned in his own house. Made even more creepy by him probably being able to see through their clothes.
    • Dumbledore openly admits his brother was in trouble for "Improper charms with a goat". In book 7, we find out that Aberforth's patronus is a goat, which makes this even more disturbing, considering that one's patronus usually takes the form of someone you love.
  • Creepy Long Fingers: Voldemort
  • Dances and Balls: The Yule Ball.
  • Demoted to Extra: Ginny Weasley.
  • Description in the Mirror: At the beginning of the second chapter, we get this after Harry wakes from his accidental Dream Spying on Voldermort:
    Harry ran his fingers over the scar again. It was still painful. He turned on the lamp beside him, scrambled out of bed, crossed the room, opened his wardrobe, and peered into the mirror on the inside of the door. A skinny boy of fourteen looked back at him, his bright green eyes puzzled under his untidy black hair. He examined the lightning-bolt scar of his reflection more closely. It looked normal, but it was still stinging.
  • Diet Episode: The Dursley portion of the book involves Dudley being put on a diet.
  • Disapproving Look: Harry gets this from Fleur as he tries to clean his wand in the weighing of the wands.
  • Distressed Dude: Harry in the climax.
  • The Dragon: Barty Crouch Junior, particularly in the movie adaptation.
  • Dub-Induced Plot Hole: A small one. When Hermione mentioned that the 1792 Triwizard Tournament was cancelled because of a cockatrice breaking free and injuring the judges, the Dutch edition translates cockatrice as basilisk. But this is impossible, since breeding basilisks has been illegal since medieval times, and they certainly don't want to use one of the most deadly creatures ever in a school tournament. Its gaze alone would have killed the entire audience.
  • Dude, Not Funny!: In-universe. Moody demonstrates the Imperius curse by putting it on a spider and making it tap-dance. All of the students find this funny, until Moody notices, and asks them if they'd find it amusing if he put the curse on one of them, which he later does.
  • Due to the Dead: Cedric asks Harry to retrieve his corpse, and Harry does.
  • Dungeon Bypass: During the third task, Harry blasts a shortcut through the hedge maze when he hears one of the others being tortured. It takes a curse plus a bit of fighting to get through.
  • Early-Bird Cameo:
    • During a trip into Dumbledore's Pensieve, Harry sees the trial of the Lestranges, being especially struck by the fanatic — and, at this point, unnamed — Mrs. Lestrange. Bellatrix is an important villain in the later books.
    • Much more minor one, but Cedric's father says that a family called the Lovegoods have been at the World Cup for a week.
    • This is also the first time that Dumbledore mentions having a brother.
  • The End of the Beginning: The last chapter is titled "The Beginning".
  • Everyone Looks Sexier If French: The Beauxbatons students. Proving that this trope can cross gender boundaries, the Patil Twins do have fun with a pair of boys from Beauxbatons.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Voldemort is later shown to be an offender, but his main agent in this book is not. "Decent people are so easy to manipulate." Although the agent did have a moment. He assumed that Harry would ask absolutely everyone for help, but he instead stuck with just his close friends. This forced the agent to play Xanatos Speed Chess.
  • Evil Gloating: Draco Malfoy gives one to Harry about Voldemort coming back and killing Muggleborn wizards...that is, until he, Crabbe, and Goyle get their butt handed to them and by the Trio and the Weasley twins, no less.
  • Evil Plan: Once again, Voldemort hatches a scheme to recover from his death pre-series. It involves dragging Harry into an isolated location and using his blood in a potion.
  • Fandom Nod: The pronunciation of "Hermione", which was finally clarified by Hermione herself in this book — then the films were released, so everyone knew how to pronounce it anyway.
  • Fiction Isn't Fair: Rita Skeeter spends the book printing increasingly bald-faced lies about Harry. Dumbledore does ban her from the school grounds, but Harry isn't presented with any legal way of stopping the actual articles.
  • Fire/Water Juxtaposition: The first challenge in the Triwizard Tournament requires the competitors to face off against four fire-breathing dragons. The second challenge requires them to swim to the bottom of the Black Lake while battling Merpeople.
  • First Name Basis: Unlike the last book, Sirius Black's surname is only mentioned once in the whole thing, by Mrs Weasley. This may be an indication of how close he and Harry have grown over the summer despite only being in contact through writing.
  • Fixing The Game: The Weasley twin subplot is driven by Ludo Bagman's welching.
  • Football Hooligans: The Irish after their win at the Quidditch World Cup, which accidentally becomes a very convenient cover for the riot the Death Eaters caused on the same night.
  • Foreshadowing
    • In the first chapter, "I will allow you to perform an essential task for me, one that many of my followers would give their right hands to perform...."
    • Voldemort's warning to Wormtail when he gives him the silver hand.
    • Dumbledore gets "an odd look of triumph" after learning that Harry's blood was used in Voldemort's resurrection spell. It's not until very late in the final book that this pays off.
    • While Harry, Ron and Hermione are confronting Fred and George in the Owlery about their "blackmail" conversation over Ludo Bagman scamming them at the World Cup, George says to Ron: "Carry on like this and you'll be made a prefect." In the next book, Ron is made a prefect alongside Hermione.
    • Barty Crouch Jr. in disguise as Mad Eye saying "If there's one thing I hate, it's a death-eater who walked free." Pays off when it's discovered that it's not really Mad Eye but a loyal death eater in disguise who said it.
    • Just before the climax, Voldemort tells his Death Eaters that he has gone further than anybody along the path that leads to immortality. We won't learn until Book 6 that he's talking about his Horcruxes and that he's done what no other Dark Wizard has done in recorded history: create multiple Horcruxes.
    • It is mentioned that a family known as "the Lovegoods" live not too far from the Weasleys. Luna Lovegood is introduced as a character in the next book.
    • As Harry looks at the tent it is pointed out that he had never been camping before. Oh, will he become experienced in three years time...
    • Hagrid mentions that Rita Skeeter wasn't happy with his good report about Harry. Ron jokes that she wants a new angle - 'you were supposed to say Harry's a mad delinquent'. By the end of the book, Rita does exactly that, laying the groundwork for a year-long Ministry smear campaign.
    • Harry blocking Voldemort's AK curse with Expelliarmus in the graveyard is how he kills him once and for all in the final book.
  • Fun with Acronyms: The Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare.
    • Could have been worse: Stop the Outrageous Abuse of Our Fellow Magical Creatures and Campaign for a Change in Their Legal Status. It wouldn't fit on the badge.
  • Gambit Roulette: The whole Tri-Wizard Tournament is hijacked by the scattered remnants of Voldemort's followers for the sole purpose of kidnapping Harry Potter by having him touch a object that would magically teleport him away to their Supervillain Lair. Their overly elaborate Evil Plan hinges not only on manipulating the title Goblet of Fire to draw Harry's name — an act that immediately draws suspicion since it violates half a dozen Tri-Wizard rules — but also on Harry's winning (for that matter, surviving) a multi-stage tournament that culminates in an obstacle course through a large maze. Surely there had to be a simpler way to get to Harry.
  • Graceful in Their Element: Viktor is graceful on a broomstick but waddling on land.
  • Gravity Screw: One of the obstacles Harry meets in the maze is a strange mist that acts as a local "inverse gravity" zone. It gives Harry the terrifying impression he's a second away from falling into the sky. Once he finds the nerve to take a step, the illusion breaks.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Ron shows this for both his best friends. First he gets jealous over Harry being entered in the Triwizard Tournament. Then secondly he gets jealous that Viktor Krum shows interest in Hermione.
  • Gut Punch: Cedric's death is this for both the book and the series.
  • Hate Sink: Rita Skeeter
  • Hedge Maze: The setting of the third challenge.
  • Hero Antagonist: Cedric is a mild example, as he was Harry's rival both in the tournament and in winning Cho's affections.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: When Barty Crouch was head of Law Enforcement.
  • High School Dance: The Yule Ball. A bit more formal and classy than most examples but still counts.
  • Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action / Interspecies Romance
    • Hagrid has been secretly breeding manticore/firecrab hybrids called "Blast-Ended Skrewts". The actual creation of magical crossbreeds is forbidden in the Potterverse, specifically because it has the potential to create such highly dangerous creatures. The Skrewts are mentioned as being so aggressive, they eventually wipe themselves out save a lone survivor.
    • Human variants appear with Fleur Delacour, whose (presumably) human-wizard grandfather married a veela and Hagrid, who had a wizard father and giantess mother.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Before the Weasleys come to get Harry, Uncle Vernon calls Mrs. Weasley a "dumpy sort of woman." Harry reacts with private outrage that he dares to call Mrs. Weasley dumpy when Dudley is the size of a small whale.
  • Identical Twin ID Tag: Padma and Parvati Patil's uniforms - Parvati is is Gryffindor and Padma in Ravenclaw.
  • I Feel Guilty, You Take It
    • Harry offers the Triwizard Cup to Cedric Diggory, because his entrance in the tournament was unfair.
    • Harry offers the prize money from the tournament to Cedric's parents, who turn it down. He then gives it to Fred and George Weasley.
  • I Have No Son: Barty Crouch, Sr. He says this exact line at his son's trial.
  • Improbably Predictable: Harry predicts how Ron and Hermione will react to his dream about Voldemort, and they both react more-or-less exactly as he thought they would.
  • I Need You Stronger: The reason for fake Moody's assistance to Harry in the Tri-Wizard's challenges. See Gambit Roulette.
  • Inevitable Tournament: A straight example. A super-dangerous and challenging tournament takes place at Hogwarts, and despite being three years too young, Harry finds himself forced into competing.
  • Jerkass: Rita Skeeter. Intrepid Reporter nothing, she seems to live not to tell the truth but to humiliate people! Case in point: Hermione just for criticizing her, and Hagrid due to him confessing he's half-giant with her deliberately eavesdropping.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Malfoy is right about how it's a bad idea to keep blast-ended skrewts around. Hermione admits this in a private moment.
  • Just Between You and Me: A lot of this, both from Voldemort and Moody/Crouch at the end of the book.
  • Kaizo Trap: The Giant Spider at the very end of the third task, meant to blindside champions who were focused on the Triwizard Cup ahead. It was only thanks to Harry's yell that poor Cedric wasn't killed, well, not immediately anyway.
  • Kangaroo Court: The trials in the Pensieve Flashback are stacked against the defendants. Sirius says he didn't even get that much. However, Ludo Bagman managed to get off, largely because he was a popular Quidditch player, making him acquitted by public opinon. We also find out later that the Lestranges and Barty Crouch Jr. did deserve to be tossed in jail, particularly the Lestranges.
  • Karmic Death: Barty Crouch, Sr..
  • Kick the Dog: Snape in the exchange of spells outside the Potions dungeon. After Hermione is hit with a spell that enlarges her already noticeable buck teeth to a cartoonish size (and Goyle's nose having done the same). Snape tells Goyle to go to the hospital wing, and then turns his attention to Hermione when Ron points out that she's been hit with a spell too. Snape says, "I see no difference." Hermione runs off crying.
  • Knight Templar: Barty Crouch Sr. His son counts, as well.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Viktor Krum, who's surrounded by female admirers for his first few months at Hogwarts, asks Hermione to the Yule Ball because she's the one girl who wasn't throwing herself at his feet.
  • Land, Sea, Sky: The three tasks of the Triwizard Tournament, in reverse order.
  • The Law of Conservation of Detail: Still played straight in this book despite being longer than the last three combined. The plot is just that complex, and if it's not part of the plot now, it's bound to come up later, such as, say, the entire first chapter.
  • Limb-Sensation Fascination: After Wormtail cuts off his hand at the end, he is given a new silver one through magic. He stares at it in disbelief, then experiments with motion and crushing a twig between his fingertips.
  • Literary Allusion Title: The Harry Potter Lexicon speculates that the title of the chapter "The Madness of Mr. Crouch" is a reference to The Madness Of King George, especially since George III is reputed to have mistaken a tree for the King of Prussia, while Crouch mistakes a tree for Percy Weasley.
  • Living Labyrinth: The third task.
  • Loose Lips: Bertha Jorkins gives Hagrid a run for his money on blabbing secrets. Hagrid at least has enough sense to realize at times that he shouldn't have blabbed; she doesn't.
  • Magically-Binding Contract: The Goblet of Fire itself — even if someone entered your name against your will and without your knowledge, if it chooses you to compete, you have to compete.
  • Magic Compass: The Point Me spell causes the caster's wand to briefly point north.
  • Meaningful Name
    • Beauxbatons means "pretty wands" and that school's crest shows two crossed wands, while Durmstrang is a Spoonerism of "Sturm (und) Drang", "storm and stress", a German cultural movement.
    • Ludo Bagman, who starts as a shifty character and we later learn is actually a bagman. "Ludo" also means "I play" in Latin (and is the name of the British variant of Pachisi); Ludo is the Head of Magical Games and Sports.
      • A "Bagman" is also someone involved in the collection of dirty money and Ludo turns out to have been cheating his gamblers, in order to pay off his debt to the goblins.
    • Rita Skeeter. Skeeter is an annoying, bloodsucking parasite who thrives on human misery... and so are mosquitoes, a.k.a. skeeters.
  • Mobile Maze: The third task.
  • Mood Whiplash: As said in the description, the series gets dark after this book. It starts with Cedric's death and goes downhill from there.
  • Moral Guardians: It was with this entry that they started coming out in full force against the series. Just as the series became a worldwide phenomenon, it also brought a wave of parents, politicians, and preachers raging against the series. They accused it of glorifying witchcraft and Satanism to children; some even burned copies of it. This required them to buy copies to burn.
  • Motive Misidentification: Throughout the story, everyone thinks that someone put Harry's name in the Goblet of Fire in an attempt to get him killed while making it look like an accident. In the end it is revealed that his name was entered in the hope that he would win, touch the Triwizard Cup, and restore Voldemort to life.
  • Narm: In-universe, Harry thinks that Professor Moody must find the whole scenario where Harry is caught out of bed trying to figure out the second clue (an otherwise dramatic and intense moment) to be quite silly, since his eye is able to see Harry's awkwardly-positioned body through the Cloak.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Voldemort tells his Death Eaters that he's gone further than anyone along the path that leads to immortality. When Harry escapes, he recounts these words to Dumbledore. As we learn in Book 6, Dumbledore's already certain that Voldemort created at least one Horcrux as a result of the Chamber of Secrets incident. Voldemort's words further solidify Dumbledore's certainty that Riddle created multiple Horcuxes.
    • And then of course, there's the whole using Harry's blood in the resurrection ceremony. Yes it allows Voldemort to bypass Lily's protective charm...but it also proves key to the climax of the entire series
  • Nice to the Waiter
    • Crouch's treatment of Winky, as lampshaded by Hermione and Sirius. Sirius, oddly, fails to live up to his own advice in the next book, although that was partially to do with Kreacher being a reminder of the family he hated.
    • Hermione attempts this with the House Elves of Hogwarts. She means well, but it doesn't go over too well.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Harry, when going to the Triwizard cup in the third task, is forced to make a decision of whether to save Cedric Diggory from something in the maze, or to go for the cup. He ultimately decides to save Diggory, and they take the cup together. Let's just say that Harry really should have left Cedric Diggory behind, for Cedric's own good.
    • And then of course Cedric would not have died and Voldemort would have not have returned if Wormtail hadn't escaped in the previous book — something that only happened because Harry spared his life.
  • Not Cheating Unless You Get Caught: Moody mentions explicitly that cheating is a traditional part of the tournament. And Harry even goes out on a limb to help Cedric when it turns out that Cedric was the one person who hadn't had any done in his favor.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: Harry's trek through the hedge maze was rather unnerving because of this. Crouch Jr. was making sure that he had a clear path to the cup.
  • Not Just A Tournament: Doubly subverted. Everyone thinks the tournament is a ruse to kill Harry during the contest. In truth, it is rigged for him to win, so he can be captured at the moment of victory.
  • Not Me This Time: Harry's trio did steal Polyjuice Potion ingredients from Snape 2 books ago, but they're not the ones who did it this time.
  • Off on a Technicality: The only reason the Muggle authorities didn't convict Frank Bryce for murdering Tom Riddle Senior and his parents (a then human-looking Voldemort was the real culprit) was the fact Muggles cannot establish a cause of death for victims of Avada Kedavra.
  • One-Hit Kill: Although it appeared in the first book, this one gives a name to the flash of green light that Harry kept remembering. It's revealed to be the Killing Curse, Avada Kedavra. (There's a reason this series has its own "Chekhov's Gun" page.)
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Until Dumbledore calls him "Alastor", it doesn't occur to Harry that "Mad-Eye" isn't Moody's first name.
  • Only Sane Man: Wormtail to Voldemort and Barty Crouch Sr. If only Voldemort had listened to his suggestions that they use another Wizard's blood in the resurrection ceremony...
  • Opposing Sports Team: Refreshingly subverted with Cedric, Fleur, and Krum, who, whatever their flaws, are pretty decent people and end up having cordial relationships with Harry. Indeed, by the end of the series Harry and Fleur are in-laws.
  • Our Mermaids Are Different: See the page for details.
  • Outscare the Enemy: A group of Death Eaters run amok at the Quidditch World Cup as the Ministry tries in vain to control them. The riot only ends once an unknown person conjures the symbol of Voldemort, from which the Death Eaters immediately retreat. They're more afraid of the punishment they'll get for denouncing Voldemort when he lost his power than they are of the Ministry.
  • Oxygenated Underwater Bubbles: A rare non-video game example with the Bubble-Head Charm.
  • Paparazzi: Rita Skeeter
  • Parting Words Regret: Molly Weasley worries about this when the twins have a close call with the Death Eaters.
  • Pensieve Flashback: The Trope Namer. This book is the first time they're used, at least directly (as Harry notes, the exact same concept previously drove the diary flashback in ''Chamber of Secrets
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: Natalie McDonald was a girl with leukemia in Real Life. When she died, Rowling added her in Gryffindor.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Both Charlie and Hagrid are mentioned are mentioned as knitting and this is either so normal for the wizarding world, or so normal for Harry, that the the only comment on it is the fact that they are knitting.
  • Red Herring:
    • Igor Karkaroff spends the whole book acting as suspiciously as possible. For readers Genre Savvy enough to know it would never be someone so obvious, Ludo Bagman is made a viable suspect with evidence against him occasionally brought up, but nearly always dismissed by the characters as irrelevant.
    • We learn about mid-way through the book that Voldemort has a spy at Hogwarts. A little while later, Harry finds out that Snape was accused of being a Death Eater after Voldemort's fall. Is Snape Voldemort's eyes and ears in the school? No. But he was a Death Eater.
  • Reluctant Gift: Filch refuses to give the Tri-wizard egg to Moody because it was "evidence for Peeves' treason". And by the way he is cuddling it, Harry thinks Filch thought the egg was like his firstborn son. But in the end, he does have to give it up.
  • The Reveal: "It was I who did that."
  • Riddling Sphinx: Harry encounters a sphinx in the hedge maze and has to answer a riddle in order to pass by it safely.
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: The jury that acquitted Ludo Bagman.
  • Rule of Three
    • The Triwizard Tournament is a competition between three wizards from three schools though this is later subverted when Harry is chosen as an unprecedented fourth contestant with three rounds.
    • There are three Unforgivable Curses.
  • Sacrificial Lion: Cedric. Former Trope Namer.
  • Sadist Teacher
    • Snape continues the role from the previous books, but really reaches his peak in this book, not even trying to hide his favoritism for his Slytherin students and his bias against the students from the other houses. This is most notable when he not only lets Malfoy off scot-free when he hits Hermione with a charm that makes her front teeth grow huge but then tells her he "sees no difference", causing her to run off crying, then has the nerve to take points from Gryffindor, and then give Harry and Ron detention when they get angry over this. Fortunately, in the next book, Umbridge appears, replacing him in this role and making Snape look not nearly as bad by comparison.
    • Imposter Moody briefly becomes this to Malfoy when he turns him into a ferret, until McGonagall shows up and rebukes him for using Cool and Unusual Punishment.
  • Saying Too Much: How Harry discovers that someone's been using Polyjuice Potion.
  • Self-Made Orphan:
    • We learn that Voldemort murdered his father and grandparents as soon as he discovered they were Muggles, and not the Wizards he imagined. And that his father abandoned him and his mother while she was pregnant.
    • At the end, we learn that Barty Crouch Jr. murdered his father, then transfigured his body into a bone and buried it. Barty makes much of how both he and Voldemort had very disappointing fathers and the pleasure of killing those fathers. He also seems to regard Voldemort as a father substitute.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Hermione at the Yule Ball.
  • She's All Grown Up: Again, Hermione at the Yule Ball.
  • Shipping Torpedo: Ron vehemently tries to torpedo Hermione/Viktor Krum, although at this point he Cannot Spit It Out as to the real reason why.
  • Shout-Out: Monty Python. Harry gains entrance to Dumbledore's office by trying various passwords, all of which are different kinds of sweet; the one that actually works, Cockroach Cluster, is a flavour used in the "Whizzo Assortment" sketch. Lampshaded in that Harry is amazed that it works and insists that he was kidding, which suggests that Harry is in Muggle-world a Monty Python fan. Cockroach Clusters are also shown to be a type of candy in the Harry Potter universe, though not a popular one.
  • Shout-Out to Shakespeare: The Weird Sisters provide live entertainment for the Yule Ball.
  • Spotting the Thread: Dumbledore realizes that Moody is not the real Moody when he removes Harry from his sight.
  • Spy Speak: A Subverted Trope: a Muggle believes that terms such as "Quidditch", "Muggles" and "Ministry of Magic" are codenames used by gangsters or spies, but these are just normal wizarding words.
  • Strawman Political: Hermione, after seeing a house-elf fired for the crime of being terrified, decides that house-elves are "uneducated and brainwashed" slaves and need to be liberated. Then she meets other, non-fired house-elves and they're quite satisfied with their way of life, claiming that virtue is its own reward. Hermione comes out looking, not heroic, but instead distinctly foolish.
    • Mark Reads Harry Potter sums it up by pointing out that she basically takes it upon herself to speak for the house-elves, instead of allowing them to speak for themselves. However, Mark (like most readers) believes she's well-meaning if misguided, and Dumbledore himself later cautions Harry not to dismiss her because of flawed methods.
  • Talk About That Thing: Used by Hermione as an excuse to get her, Harry, and Ron out of the room before Mrs. Weasley blows up at Fred and George.
  • Talk to the Fist: Malfoy's boasting speech to Harry at the end of the novel gets interrupted by Harry, Hermione, Ron, Fred, and George blasting off a variety of spells simultaneously. Also see Berserk Button. Qualifies as Crowning Moment Of Awesome
  • Tantrum Throwing: Upon discovering that Fred and George have engorged Dudley's tongue, Uncle Vernon begins throwing things at the Weasleys and Harry, who flee the house via Floo Powder.
  • Technicolor Fire: The eponymous object lights up with blue-white fire at the beginning of each tournament. When it's about to spew out the name of an accepted contestant, it turns bright red.
  • Tell Him I'm Not Speaking to Him: Happened between Harry and Ron, with Hermione in the middle.
  • There Should Be a Law:
    Giggling should be made illegal, Harry thought furiously, as all the girls around Cho began doing it.
  • Tournament Arc
  • Took a Level in Badass: This is the point in the series where Harry seriously starts to improve as a spell caster. In the first book Harry is never seen casting a single spell successfully. In the second, he performs a spell here and there, but nothing particularly noteworthy. It takes most of the third book just to master one spell which, while admittedly difficult to learn, is an extremely situational charm. In this book, he learns a whole arsenal of jinxes, hexes and curses to survive the final trial, including Stupefy, his most powerful battle spell.
  • Treacherous Advisor: Crouch!Moody, a Tournament Arc example.
  • Ultra Super Death Gore Fest Chainsawer 3000: Mega Mutilation Part Three, a game played by Dudley.
  • Understatement: "Potentially problematic? When was the last time you held your breath underwater for an hour, Hermione?"
  • Unscaled Merfolk: Viktor become half shark for the undersea challenge. It's later revealed that he messed the transfiguration up, and apparently one of the teachers had to put him back to normal. Giving himself only a shark's head was on purpose, since wizards who completely transform themselves without being an animagus lose their humanity. Not being able to say the incantation to turn himself back with a shark's mouth, however, was pretty straight Didn't Think This Through.
  • "Well Done, Son" Guy: Barty Crouch Jr.'s motive. Since he'll never have approval from his own father he is seeking it from his substitute father figure: Voldemort.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Ludo Bagman exits stage left, pursued by goblins, and vanishes utterly from the series. This may be a Disproportionate Retribution that happens offscreen.
  • When She Smiles: After Hermione gets her teeth magically fixed, Harry and (especially) Ron are rather startled by her new smile...
  • White Man's Burden: deconstructed. Hermione's house-elf liberation subplot is, in-universe, portrayed as a bad thing, and she gets called on it by practically everyone. Aside from the inherent hypocrisy of launching a house-elf freedom campaign without so much as asking for their help, she also bases her view of house-elf needs on Dobby—an individual whose views on freedom, payment and clothing are best described as "radically liberal." And she completely misses the point about why house-elves are unhappy — their working conditions, not the work itself or lack of pay. (Even Dobby, when given employment later in the series, bargains his salary down, feeling he's been offered too much.)
  • Why Don't You Marry It?: Percy just won't stop gushing about Mr. Crouch. Ron's waiting for them to announce their engagement.
  • Witch Hunt: The trials, or lack of there for Sirius, of suspected Death Eaters at the Ministry.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Bartemius Crouch, Jr.
  • Wronski Feint: The Trope Namer.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: Fake Moody had to change his plans when Harry didn't ask Neville for help.
  • You're Insane!: Harry's response to Barty Crouch Jr.'s Motive Rant.
  • Your Mom: Malfoy insults Ron's mother and Harry responds by insulting Malfoy's mother:
    “Oh yeah, you were staying with them this summer, weren’t you, Potter?” sneered Malfoy. “So tell me, is his mother really that porky, or is it just the picture?”
    “You know your mother, Malfoy?” said Harry — both he and Hermione had grabbed the back of Ron’s robes to stop him from launching himself at Malfoy — “that expression she’s got, like she’s got dung under her nose? Has she always looked like that, or was it just because you were with her?”
    Malfoy’s pale face went slightly pink.
    “Don’t you dare insult my mother, Potter.”
  • Zombie Advocate: Hermione for House Elves, via S.P.E.W.

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of AzkabanHugo AwardFall Revolution
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alternative title(s): Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire
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