I recently finished my reread of the Harry Potter books, the first time I read the books as an adult. And it’s safe to say that the books definitely hold up! The only book that I didn’t like as much as I used to as a child and teenager was The Order of the Phoenix as I felt the book was a bit too messy, too much was happening and nothing really happened until the end. It could have been edited further down and would have changed nothing.
Anyway, I thought it was about time I share my unpopular Harry Potter opinions! Some of these opinions are undoubtedly shared by others and you’ve probably heard of some of these before, but some you might not have!
Unpopular Opinion #1: The Marauders … Suck
I’m sorry but it has to be said: the Marauders aren’t that great and I don’t understand why so many people like them. For one, we don’t actually see them that much in the series and during those brief scenes that we do see them, they’re violently bullying Snape.
In The Prisoner of Azkaban, Sirius tried to get Snape killed by sending him to the Whomping Willow during a full moon when Remus was a werewolf. In The Order of the Phoenix, Harry sees a memory of Sirius and James bullying Snape by using a spell that lifts him upside down and reveals his underwear, just because Snape was there and they were bored.
If I went to school with people like this, I have no doubt I and many other people would have hated them because they are complete bullies. And you can’t convince me otherwise: you would not have wanted to be friends with kids like them in school. I know a lot of people wish Rowling would write a book about the Marauders in school, but I hope she never does because they’re all tiny little assholes.
When I think about it, I think a lot of the love the Marauders get is probably based on fan fiction. Because there’s so few canon scenes of the boys in the books, people turned to fan fiction to write about them, and so after years and years of reading about them as friends, and even lovers sometimes, I think some people idolise them — but from their own perspective, not the canon’s.
Unpopular Opinion #2: These Books Aren’t 5-Star Worthy a.k.a. plot holes galore!
I know we all adore the Harry Potter books and they mean a lot to so many people, but I tend to think a lot of that has to do with nostalgia as opposed to how good the books are. Because these books aren’t worth 5 stars.
First of all, the books aren’t written that well. That may sound mean, but Rowling’s writing, in my opinion, is sub-par. The world building, as opposed to the writing, is what draws so many people into the story.
Second, there are actually A LOT of plot holes in the books. Some are big ones and some are small ones. Most of them don’t bother me too much and I can ignore them, but some of them can be frustrating! One such plot hole happens in The Deathly Hallows: Hermione tells Harry and Ron that she performed a spell on her parents to make them forget about the fact that they had a daughter and move to Australia, to keep them safe from Voldemort. Only a few chapters later, when the gang has been ambushed by Death Eaters in a coffee store, they decide to perform a memory charm on the Death Eaters so they forget they ever saw Harry. But all three of them say they’ve never performed a memory charm before, even Hermione … but that can’t be right, because she literally said she just performed one on her parents on a couple of chapters earlier! I’m not making this up, look it up!
And there’s so many more: from the confusing information about Secret Keepers (Lily and James could have been there own Keepers just like Bill was in The Deathly Hallows thus never imparting their location to Peter and thus never being killed by Voldemort); from the fact that Fred and George would have seen Peter sleeping with Ron every night on the Marauders Map; to the fact that the Portkey in The Goblet of Fire makes no sense (earlier in the book it had been established that Portkeys can only be used for one-way travel, so how did the Portkey take Harry and Cedric both to the graveyard and away from it again?)
Those are just a few plot holes, so here’s a video that goes more in depth about them:
And some articles about it:
- Biggest Plot Holes in Harry Potter
- 15 massive Harry Potter plot holes that were never explained
- Reddit thread
But back to my original point: these books aren’t 5 star reads. I’d say the only books in the series that are 5 star reads are The Goblet of Fire, The Half-Blood Prince and The Deathly Hallows. I only rated The Prisoner of Azkaban 5 stars because of nostalgia.
Unpopular Opinion #3: Stop Putting Snape In Boxes
This is probably going to be my most controversial opinion and I anticipate a lot of people commenting about it, but bear with me. But in my opinion Snape is neither a good nor bad character so stop putting him in these neatly labelled boxes!
I get so angry when I come across a tweet or a post of some kind that discusses how “evil” Snape was for his treatment of Harry and the students over their years at Hogwarts, and how his redemption arc wasn’t really one because he was obsessed with Harry’s mother and never motivated by care for Harry. And I get equally angry when I come across opposite tweets that suggest that Snape was secretly a hero all along. Now you can have whatever opinion you want on this matter, but I think a lot of people tend to forget one major thing: these books are written from Harry’s perspective which is a very skewered perspective of right and wrong.
Harry grows so much during the books but when he dislikes someone, he dislikes them — there’s no changing his mind. Of course Snape acted like an ass to him and treated him poorly, but Harry also exaggerated quite a lot of that treatment and seemed determined to hate Snape. For example, in The Prisoner of Azkaban, Snape tells Harry off for going to Hogsmeade (Snape has no proof, he’s just guessing) and tells Harry how selfish he is behaving as so many people are going out of their way to protect him, and Harry HATES him for this. He complains about how unfair Snape is being to Ron and Hermione even though only a couple of chapters later, Remus says THE EXACT SAME THING and Harry feels embarrassed by his behaviour and listens to Remus. So its just really interesting to see how Harry views two very similar events completely differently, which might explain a lot of his other interactions with Snape.
Ignoring Snape’s unnecessary removing of points from Gryffindor House, whenever Snape gives Harry detention or tells him off, Harry 100% deserves it, but because its Snape and Harry hates him, and the books are Harry’s perspective, the reader is persuaded to believe that Snape is in the wrong and treating Harry unfairly. What I’m saying is: don’t forget that these books are from a child’s/teenager’s perspective and Harry is often missing out on key information and even when he does receive information, he interprets it completely incorrectly — and he could have done so with a lot of his interactions with Snape.
Just one more example that suggests Harry has a skewered perspective of Snape: Harry constantly makes mention of the fact that Snape has greasy hair, but no one else ever mentions this. We can see this during one of the rare occasions that books are in a different person’s perspective: in The Half-Blood Prince, Bellatrix and Narcissa visit Snape to ask him to protect Draco, the narrator discusses Snape’s appearance but doesn’t make mention of Snape’s supposed greasy hair. I think its completely valid to interpret this as Harry unfairly poking fun at Snape and making him seem meaner and uglier in his head than Snape actually is.
Basically, my main issue with how people view Snape is that he is neither a good character nor an evil one, because people just don’t work like that. As Sirius says, “The world isn’t split into good people and Death Eaters. We’ve all got both light and dark inside of us.” And that is equally true for Snape. He is both an asshole and a hero. He has done some terrible things in his life but he tries to make up for those terrible decisions for the remainder of his life — and he does. People aren’t put in good or evil boxes, because that’s not how humans beings work. So stop putting Snape in them too.
Unpopular Opinion #4: How is there not even one good Slytherin?
This is something many people have discussed before me but I’ll be damned if I don’t include this on my list, but how, in seven entire books, is there NOT EVEN ONE GOOD SLYTHERIN STUDENT? NOT ONE? THAT IS LITERALLY IMPOSSIBLE.
J.K. Rowling clearly hates the Slytherin House because she shits on them in every single book. And I get it: Harry, again, has a skewered perspective of Slytherin House because his first interaction with them was a negative one and we’ve already established that Harry doesn’t change his mind on his first impressions of people. But it is actually impossible that every student in Slytherin House supports Voldemort, or is an evil shitbag.
First of all, the markers of a Slytherin student aren’t evil: cunning, ambition, determination and leadership. None of those traits are inherently “evil”, so why does Slytherin have this reputation? Is it because their founder, Salazar Slytherin, didn’t want to teach Muggle Born students? Because, to be fair, when Hogwarts was founded it was during a time were wizards and witches were persecuted by Muggles, so I would say it makes sense that Slytherin didn’t want to teach the children of the very people who were killing his kind. And why does Hagrid say, “There wasn’t a single witch or wizard who went bad who wasn’t in Slytherin,” when Peter Pettigrew, who was a Death Eater, was in Gryffindor and when Quirrell, who let Voldemort live on the back of his head, was in Ravenclaw?
Second of all, I find it highly improbable that Slytherin ONLY accepts students from Pure Blood families because wasn’t it established that there’s not many completely Pure Blood families left, so if that’s the case, there would be like four kids in Slytherin. And I know there’s a lot of Half-Blood students, but I find it totally impossible that there’s not one Muggle Born student — are no Muggle Born kids cunning, ambitious and determined leaders?
Finally, I refuse to believe that every single Slytherin student supports Voldemort. In The Deathly Hallows, McGonagall orders Slughorn to escort the Slytherin students to the dungeons during the Battle of Hogwarts because she doesn’t believe they’d be on their side, which again is ridiculous. Not one single student supported Harry and the Order of the Pheonix? Not one Slytherin student wanted to be in Dumbledore’s Army? Nah fam.
Can you tell I’m in Slytherin?
Unpopular Opinion #5: Harry Shouldn’t Have Become a Wizard Cop
I get so mad just thinking about Harry becoming an Auror after the events of The Deathly Hallows because it just doesn’t make sense.
Harry has gone his entire life fighting evil, barely managing to survive or save a friend, even had breakdowns over this in The Order of the Phoenix and The Deathly Hallows, and yet he still willingly puts himself in danger hunting Death Eaters and other evil wizards? It just doesn’t seem realistic.
I personally believe that Harry should have become a professor at Hogwarts, specifically teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts. Firstly, Harry loves Hogwarts. He frequently says that Hogwarts is the only place he’s ever felt safe and felt at home. Second, Harry is an already an amazing teacher, as we saw in The Order of the Phoenix when Harry taught the students that would become Dumbledore’s Army. Every single student commented on how well Harry taught them, and so many stated that spells they’d never been able to perform before suddenly became much easier to do when Harry explained them.
Basically, Harry would have been an amazing Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, and there are so many suggestions of this peppered throughout the entire series. Harry becoming a cop makes no sense. Let the boy rest.
Unpopular Opinion #6: Ron and Hermione Shouldn’t Have Gotten Together
This probably isn’t an unpopular opinion because I know a lot of people hold the same belief, but I still wanted to discuss my feelings.
I have no problem with the friends to lovers trope but Hermione and Ron just don’t work well together. First of all, THEY FIGHT ALL THE TIME. In every single book, Ron and Hermione fight — usually about them being jealous the other is dating someone, but even when it’s not about dating, they’re still arguing about something. It’s a constant pattern in each book because they don’t seem to understand each other. Ron is a very emotional person whereas Hermione is quite logical. Obviously I’m not saying opposites can’t work together, but neither of them are ever willing to put themselves in the other’s shoes and see the other’s point.
But I think one of my biggest issues with them as a couple is the fact that Ron can’t handle how smart and amazing Hermione is. He constantly pokes fun of her intelligence and how she motivated she is, and instead of getting motivated in turn, he criticises her, she gets angry … and they fight. And I get it, Ron and Hermione are kids for a good portion of the series, but this doesn’t end as they get older. Whereas someone like Viktor Krum really appreciated Hermione and how smart she is, and loved listening to her and discussing things with her.
Mainly, I just don’t think Ron could have made Hermione happy. Sorry to Ron (he’s my least favourite of the trio), but he just doesn’t challenge her or motivate her and I think after a while she’d be pretty bored.
Don’t agree with me? Well, Rowling actually said: “I wrote the Hermione/Ron relationship as a form of wish fulfilment. That’s how it was conceived, really. For reasons that have very little to do with literature and far more to do with me clinging to the plot as I first imagined it, Hermione ended up with Ron.” And Emma Watson agrees with Rowling, saying: “I think there are fans out there who know that too and who wonder whether Ron would have really been able to make her happy.”
Unpopular Opinion #7: Dumbledore Should Have Been in Slytherin
I WILL DIE ON THIS HILL! DUMBLEDORE IS NOT IN GRYFFINDOR BECAUSE HE PORTRAYS MORE SLYTHERIN TRAITS.
So the main Gryffindor traits are: bravery, daring, chivalry and courage. And personally I don’t think Dumbledore has any of these traits? I don’t think he’s necessarily brave: he never puts himself in a fight if he can avoid it and he’s never sought for fame or power because the one time he tried to, his sister died — so he’s not brave, he’s not daring and he’s not chivalrous. The most I would say is he’s courageous only because it takes courage to go out and find all those dangerous Horcruxes. But that’s it, that’s all I’ll give you.
The reason I think he belongs more in Slytherin is because of his younger years: before his sister passed, Dumbledore was very ambitious. very cunning, someone that had a lot of followers because of his personality, and obviously a very good leader. Sounds like someone whose name we’re not allowed to say, doesn’t he? Plus, when he was friends with Grindelwald, he was determined to bring wizards out of hiding and conquer Muggles. Also sounds like a certain person’s whose name shall not be mentioned.
Of course you could say that after his sister was killed, Dumbledore spent the rest of his life making up for his past behaviour and beliefs, but even as an adult, he doesn’t really exemplify traditional Gryffindor traits. If anything, the dude is a Slytherpuff.
Unpopular Opinion #8: Where is Draco’s Redemption ARC?
WHERE IS IT? WHERE IS IT, ROWLING?
Like many, many people, I’m so disappointed that Draco never got his redemption arc. I’m fully aware that Draco was a little shit for a good portion of the series, but come The Half-Blood Prince, his childish pranks don’t matter anymore as he’s been ordered by Voldemort to kill Dumbledore and get the Death Eaters into Hogwarts. So now he’s pretty much depressed and anxious all the time because if fails, Voldemort will kill his family. Draco has more reason than anyone to turn against Voldemort duding the Battle of Hogwarts.
At least in the book, Draco and his family hang around after the battle, whereas in the movie they run away. Regardless, Draco deserved to redeem himself and finally become friends with Harry. Then, at least, that little head nod he gives Harry during the epilogue would make more sense.
Draco is not a Death Eater, or someone who wants Voldemort to win the war. He’s just a scared boy who doesn’t have a say in decisions people make that directly affect him.
What are your unpopular Harry Potter opinions? Do you agree or disagree with mine? Let me know!