• Wed, Jul 13 2011

Why Harry Potter Should Really Be All About Hermione Granger

In preparation for the final Harry Potter movie, I’m rewatching all of the films to date. Thanks, ABC Family, for that well-timed marathon last weekend and sorry, my DVR, for taking up so much space. In the middle of Prisoner of Azkaban last night (I’ll admit that I had this thought before last night) I had a revelation.

The books should be named after Hermione Granger.

Yes, yes, sad times about that whole your parents dying thing, Harry. Please see the condolences card I sent you 12 YEARS AGO for my sympathy. In the meantime, look at how many people are COMING OUT OF THE WOODWORK to be your new mentor. Even McGonagall is like, “Hey kid, here is a free fancy broom. Just because that one time when your parents died and you’re good at catching shit.”

On the other side of the common room, we have Hermione, who is Muggle born, which means she simply doesn’t have that same built-in support as Harry. She can’t go home to her parents and talk about how people keep trying to kill her because her parents just wouldn’t understand. And while she’s at school, instead of having every single teacher fall over their magic wand to get on her good side, she’s held down. People won’t stop talking about her Muggle parents and it’s all she can do to keep up her studies. By which I mean, BEING BETTER THAN ALL OF THE SCHOOL.

And when Snape assigns homework, Harry is all, “Wah-Wah, there is sport tomorrow, fulfilling my responsibility will be so hard.” MEANWHILE Hermione is MOVING FUCKING TIME so she can take more classes. Because girl knows SOMETHING is happening and she needs to STUDY THE EFF UP.

When the time comes around to fight, the boys are like, “oh wow, look at this thing that happened! Isn’t that crazy?” Meanwhile Hermione is like, “idiots, I figured that out like 5 books ago. CAN YOU PLEASE FOCUS.”

Who actually forms Dumbledore’s army? Hermione. Who has the perseverance and planning to help them survive for the 1908830 thousand pages when they were just sitting in a tent in the cold? Hermione. Supes glad you mastered the patronus charm, Harry, but without Hermione, you wouldn’t even have your wand.

And after she saves the day and just about everyone in the entire book/series/magical world tells her that she’s “the smartest witch for her age,” is it Hermione who finally gets the fancy broom? Of course not. SWOOP IN AN STEAL THE GLORY AGAIN, HORRIBLE HARRY.

In the final book, the girl has to wipe her parents’ memory of any trace of her so they’ll be protected. Essentially orphaning herself. But do people feel bad? Do they start going all Harry Potter on her? No. They are like, “Oh, hey, Hermione, all of my friends and family who still love me and still know who I am are getting together for a massive party. You can come if you want.” and she’s like, “Jolly, fucking jolly, assholes.”

And in the end? She gets stuck with Ron. Ron who did not age well, Ron who really hasn’t done much more than sulk since that one time when he moved the pieces correctly in Wizard’s chess. Ron. Even Snape is hotter than Ron. I mean, at least let her have a little something, something going on with Sirius before he dies. Sirius is deserving of a woman like Hermione.

Finally, I present you with this photo from last night’s premiere. Here are our favorite kids (God, Neville, stop being so goddamn hot), and who stands out? Hermione. Girl is like, “Fuck this bullshit. I own this series. I OWN THEM ALL.”

This post originally appeared on Joy’s blog, Your Daily Dose of Joy, which can be found here.

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  • porkchop

    Something else I love about Hermione is how evil she is. To get what she wants, she will do every illegal thing in the book. (paralyzed Neville, led what’s-her-face into gang of murderous centaurs, imprisoned Rita Skeeter in a jar, transforms people left and right, trashed the ministry of magic…) She’s also ridiculously secretive and sneaky, and uses jealousy to control people. And she fixed the quidditch tryouts.

    I don’t know why Voldemort wasn’t trying to kill her (or recruit her)

    • Sarah

      It’s the same thing as with Princess Leia in Star Wars – wtf was Darth Vadar bothering with Luke, when Leia had stronger force, could face up to Vadar’s best mind-attacks and not give anything away, had all those organisational & diplomacy skills etc etc etc… god I’m such a total geek….

  • Eileen

    I liked her best, always – perhaps most of all because she acts like a real, smart, capable person, as opposed to Harry, who acts like JK Rowling wishes she could act. I mean, I like Harry well enough, but he’s rich and famous and well respected for something that his mother did – of course he doesn’t need Scrimgeour or Slughorn or anyone to give him a leg up, and of course he can be generous with everyone, and of course he can be brave in dastardly situations – Rowling will make sure everything works out for him in the end.

    I will say that Hermione falling in love with Ron made more sense than Harry falling in love with Ginny, considering that Ginny is basically a Mary Sue. But then so many things did.

  • aleks

    This. Is. PERFECT.

  • Jon

    While I wouldn’t go so far as to say the series should revolve around her, Hermione is indeed an exceptional character. If anyone should get their own series, it’s Severus Snape. I still think “The Prince’s Tale” is one of the most well-written and touching chapters in literature.

    • Jennifer Wright

      Dear Jon,

      DITTO.

      I secretly hoped Hermione would end up with Snape in spite of how incredibly unrealistic that would be. But they were both really smart. And had muggle ancestry. And were really conflicted. And… were my two favorite characters, so, obviously.

    • anonymous

      Lol Hermione would have been way too young for Snape. I know he is younger in the books, but he’s still too old for her. That would have been gross.

    • Dee

      Jon – couldn’t agree with you more. I would love to see a series based on Snape. After re-reading the series every few years, I can’t express how much I love the character of Severus Snape. The Half-Blood Prince is my favorite HP book of the series. I’d love to see a prequel to the series when Snape, Lily, James, Remus, Sirius, Lucius, Peter and the lot were students at Hogwarts.

    • Alice

      THIS

  • Cheryl

    I was just thinking this the other day. Hermione totally made this series for me. I love her and love you for writing this.

    Also… THAT is NEVILLE? Holy hell. I was wondering who that was!

    • Joy

      Isn’t Neville the hottest? I cannot deal. I cannot deal at all.

  • Stephen

    Well, Ron did mention that he and Harry had a bad influence on Hermione… book 2, so he really gets it. Don’t act so surprized.

    JK omitted the bit in her book where Voldemort tried to recruit Neville’s parents, but did it in such a ham-handed way. He’s so stupid. The snake didn’t deserve it.

    The story IS about Hermione. She starts the series, and ends it. Check out these original book titles: Hermione and the Philospher’s Stone. Ginny and the Chamber of Secrets. Sirius the Prisoner of Azkeban. The Death Eater and the Goblet of Fire. Fudge and the Order of the Phoenix. Snape the Half-Blood Prince. Hermione and the Deathly Hallows. Harry wasn’t mentioned in any of them. But the publisher objected, and we’re left with what we got.

    • lee

      Source please, are these titles real?

  • Ona

    Of her age. Not for her age. I always took “of her age” to be a generational thing not a literal age group thing. Or I think I took “of her age” to mean “of this age” as in this contemporary time period.

  • myrti

    “we have Hermione, who is Muggle born, which means she simply doesn’t have that same built-in support as Harry. She can’t go home to her parents and talk about how people keep trying to kill her”

    Are you serious? Like Harry can go & chat it over with the Dursleys?

    “at school, instead of having every single teacher fall over their magic wand to get on her good side, she’s held down”

    Like when she’s given a very rare time-turner so she can do all the courses she wants?

    Urgh. Read the books.

    • Morgan

      Thank you!

  • Hanna

    You’re absolutely right. Although I am probably just saying this because I felt like JK Rowling was describing ME when she created Hermione. Like she had a unique insight into my school years.

  • Jamie B

    Can I just say, I love the females of this series!

    McGonagall? Kickass.
    Bellatrix? Insane but hello she’s freaking second in command. She’s badass.
    Molly Weasley? SO awesome.
    Hermione? See above.
    Lily Potter (what little we see)? She stood up for herself. Badass.

    My daughter is gonna be RAISED on these women. :D

    • Dee

      Don’t forget Ginny Weasley – she’s pretty badass herself!

    • OrchidGrowinMan

      I remember thinking the same thing about McGonagall: not only a powerful, admirable and competent woman, but a role for an older woman as well. That’s really rare. Maggie Smith carries the role wonderfully.

      I have daughters, and I have thought about this a lot: these movies, these books, are a positive influence.

  • Rory M

    To be fair, Rowling has commented a few times that Hermione is central (or key, or whatever; not sure of the exact words). Harry is the “hero” (in the sense of the one who does the morally courageous things), while without Hermione, nothing would work. I also get the impression Rowling was aiming for Ron to be the one of the trio that provides the heart and holds them together. Love Rowling though I do, I am not sure she is able to write with the emotional subtlety required to make that value apparent.

    She has also commented a few times that Hermione is based on her…

    • Leigh

      So Hermione is a Mary Sue?

  • Kari

    Hermione is on my list of acceptable female role models for young women. I love her!

  • Molly

    I remember reading the sequence in Sorcerer’s Stone when Harry, Ron, and Hermione had gotten past Fluffy and were trying to make it to the Stone and thinking, “They would never have even got past the clinging vines if it weren’t for Hermione. They’d be so fucked without her.”. Thank you for writing the article I would’ve written if I had any kind of public outlet to opine from. You ROCK… and so does my role model, Hermione Fucking Kicking-Ass-and-Taking-Names Granger.

  • Larkin

    Unfortunately, if the book titles had a female name in them instead of a male, they never would have been as popular. People would have figured that boys wouldn’t like them because boys can’t identify with female main characters (although girls constantly have to do that, given the dearth of decent female characters), or that any fantasy type book about a girl would have to be about a princess and her magical horse that can talk. *rolls eyes*

    • Jackson

      After the first book I always had trouble relating to Harry, and I preferred Hermione. I do think she would make a more interesting main character, maybe the books could have switched to here viewpoint at some point that would have been awesome.

  • Delorfinde

    She was always my favourite character. I wanted to be her :) And Emma Watson is totally the best actress of them all. You know when they started filming the first one she was only NINE? How is it possible to be that good at acting when you’re that young?

  • NoAstronomer

    To be fair to Harry and Ron they do realize how important she is. In the last book as Harry attempts to secretly leave Ron’s house and he is busted by Ron, Harry suggests Ron come with him.

    Ron’s reply is : “Without Hermione! We wouldn’t last five minutes without her!”

    • Morgan

      Hmmm…someone has clearly seen the film, but not read the book…

  • spec

    a usual structure of movies like this (blockbuster success, aimed at a large audience that varies in age range) is such: central character: some kind of past, a sort of ‘specialness’, good moral compass. two (in this case) side-characters: goofy loveable one, and intelligent nerd. in this case, the intelligent nerd happens to be female. if she were the main character, a usual strategy would be to make her character as that of the ‘main character’s', stated above. so, it would be strategic to make her, for example, having [enter] kind of a past, a kind of ‘specialness’ and a good moral compass. so, she wouldn’t be the intelligent nerd all of you are praising her for. lol

  • anarchic teapot

    We’ve been watching the films again, since the books are so excruciatingly written (someone should have heeded Mark Twain’s advice). There’s not an adult actress in them that isn ‘t awesome.

    Still think Hermione should have been black.

    • Purple Kangaroo

      Da fuq? Why? Does it really matter what color she is? That is soooo not the point of the story. Does it matter what color any of them are? Cause it shouldn’t, it shouldn’t matter. And making her black would just make the entkre movie/book a political agenda This story has so many messages anyway. Many already listed. And it already tackles segragation (remember the purebloods?). So get off your fuckin high horse. Color doesn’t matter.

    • http://anarchic-teapot.net/ anarchic teapot

      “And making her black would just make the entkre movie/book a political agenda” “Color doesn’t matter.”
      Your second statement is contradicted by your first, as well as the fact that you reacted so violently. Check your logic and prejudice please.

    • Clare

      I agree color doesn’t matter. Whoever played her still would’ve kicked ass the whole time! No matter what race she was I still would’ve loved her! And I’m black

  • Jadehawk

    holy crap, you’re right!

    I stopped reading the books at some point, but maybe I should re-read them and pretend they’re all titled “Hermione and [...]” ;-)

  • joseph

    an accademic she is! half breed & living in a house where she has the time & resource to learn (in peace & alone?) wow?…well I see hermione with one of the half/man horse’s (uno the one)wise, magical, different, anyway a mind-melt relationship, togather he(horseman) would find a suitable man-seed which would inhance her D.N.A been brought up within this vvery open landscape…auntie Ginny yes & the blonde bomber “yes”…I do How every Find in a sexual relationship/between two the blue/spark has a great deal in pasting that moment in time?,hahahahahaaha good spell’s to all….oooop,s haha

  • Anne C.

    You’re hilarious, and ABSOLUTELY RIGHT about Hermione. Damn. How did we miss this?

  • miinxi

    BOOM! Mother F*cker!

  • Lara

    So true. Though I thought this already from the first book… but hey would books with a girl as the protagonist have become so popular? J.K. Rowling used only her initials, because she thought that boys would never read a book written by a woman. How sad is that?

  • Amna

    SOOO TRUE.

    Harry’s attitude towards her is one thing that bugs me (despite being a H/Hr shipper) He is never thankful. She got tortured for Godsake and Harry is like “you were good there…coming up with that story while she tortured u” … HOW LAME IS THAT. Not a word on her wiping her parents memories or saving his life repeatedly. Even in fifth book…he was more worried about his a** that it will be my fault…and hands her over to neville once he knows she is alive… Bitter bitter stuff. Don’t even want to get started on Ron :)

    • Anonymous

      Harry had bigger issues to worry about at the time. I mean, im sure he was very worried about her, but in such tense situations he doesn’t have the time to go around thanking everyone and asking them how they’re doing. A lot of people helped Harry – not just Hermione and all the Weasleys. And Ron often acknowledged how talented and smart Hermione was.

  • Jemaleddin

    Actually, I don’t see Hermione in that picture. Hermione is the buck-toothed girl with frizzy hair and COMPLETELY FICTIONAL.

    I see Emma Watson, a pretty young woman, and a person in her own right.

  • Tim

    Mostly agreed about Ron- he didn’t do much. But come on- Harry stopped Voldemort from getting the sorcerer’s stone, killed a basilisk, drove away a hundred dementors, won the triwizard tournament (albeit with help), and oh yeah, killed Voldemort. Twice, in a way.

  • Lamont Cranston

    She was hot until she SHAVED HER HEAD. Now she just looks like a facist.

    • Mark Temporis

      A really hot fascist.

  • Tina

    1. I LOVE this article, so funny and great.
    2. However, in the books it was not McGonagall who gave Harry the broom, it was Siruis. Just saying!

    • Joy

      Tina, you’re right, Siruis did give him a Firebolt in The Prisoner of Azkaban, but McGonagall give him his first brook in The Sorcerer’s Stone.

    • Lynette

      Yeah, but it’s purchased with his money. She just gives him permission to have it, since first-years can’t have their own brooms.

    • Michel

      Sirius gave him the Firebolt but McGonagall gave him the Nimbus 2000 in the first book. (I only know this because I just finished the first book again lol)

  • Christina

    I’d agree with you about everything save the Sirius being deserving of someone like Hermione. I know I’m pretty alone in this, but I always thought Sirius was a bit of a dbag, maybe not after Azkaban, but I was never a huge fan…No one is really worthy of Hermione, but Ron realizes how freaking awesome she is and respects her for it.

  • Fairy Fodder

    If you actually read the books, you’d know there was a prophecy made LONG before Harry was even born that states he would defeat the dark lord… so it is ludicrous to think Hermione could be the main character.

    • Brynn

      That part was brought in until the fifth book. JK herself say that it she was just trying to come up with a way to explain why Voldemort wanted to kill Harry. I think that Hermione should maybe star in a side series, but not in the original books. It would be weird if Hermione stared in the original series, because then it would change the entire plot.

    • Morgan

      THANK YOU

  • Abby

    Boom! Seriously, those two would have never made it out of book one without Hermoine. Harry should be known as The Boy Who Had His Ass Saved Multiple Times By Hermoine Because He Does Dumb Shit.

  • Lynette

    While your article is pretty interesting, I would say it’s pretty clear that either 1) you’ve never actually read the books, or 2) you read them once when they first came out and forgot most of that. It really pains me to read something by someone who cannot get basic facts about characters right. Hermione had WAY more of a support system than Harry Potter.

    • Abby

      What support system did she have? For the first three books, no one liked her because she was smarter than them and perfomed better in class. I think it was book one when the girls walk past her and bump into her as she shuffles along the hallway.

      She and Ginny develop a friendship, and later on she does ingratiate herself with the other Gryffindors, but in the beginning it’s pretty much smarty-pants Hermoine alone.

  • Max

    Wait, why’s Julian Assange there?

  • Mary Mark Ockerbloom

    I don’t see Harry as a conventional “hero”. Harry is”doubled” by Neville; Neville’s parents are also destroyed; Neville leads the second Dumbledore’s army; Neville kills the Nagini Horcrux. The only thing that distinguishes them is that Voldemart happened to target the Potters, not the Longbottoms. I think that Rowling makes a point there about heroes: that people become heroic not because of their brilliance or good looks :-) but simply because they happen to be “chosen”. They’re there; They have to cope. I also think it’s intentional that Harry doesn’t stand alone, like a classic hero; I think it’s part of the point that he relies on Hermione’s brilliance, on Ron’s connected family; on Dumbledore and Sirius and Neville and everyone else. We all depend on each other to survive.

  • bonnie-ann black

    and let’s not forget ginny weasley! throughout 5 books she said to be the most talented witch of her age, or ever, and then at the end, she just gets to be… Harry’s girlfriend. the prize. like usual.

  • Bruce Gee

    I’ve taught children’s literature in the past, and I’d go so far as to say that Hermione is Rowling’s most original and greatest creation in her books.
    The thing that’s most original about her is that she clearly embodies an idea that’s uniquely modern, and I can’t think of any other children’s novel ever that states it so clearly: KNOWING THINGS CAN BE A HEROIC VIRTUE.
    Pretty much every other literary hero from Siegfried to Frodo has embodied other classic “heroic virtues”: courage, endurance, integrity. But I can barely think of any other heroes who are successful because they are smart (Encyclopedia Brown, maybe?) It’s ok to be smart in classic fiction if you’re also old and wise, but if you’re young and clever, the best you can hope for is to be comic relief if you’re lucky, or else outright villainy. To the popular kids, nerds have always been either funny or evil.
    We don’t even really have a word in our language that is a POSITIVE term for “a student who is passionately driven to get good grades and excel.” Actually, I think a good term for such a student would be “a Hermione.” I’ve often used this term to myself or my wife: “Why is it that the only students in my class who ever do the extra credit assignments are the Hermiones who already have solid A’s?”
    As a role model for both guys and girls, she is unsurpassed. I want both my son and my daughter to think “Hey, if I spend some time in the library, maybe I’ll find answers that will help me overcome my problems.” That’s a good message for all of society, in fact.

    • James

      Odysseus is the archetypal “successful because he is smart” (“much-contriving”) hero, and he’s had a long run.

    • Lenah

      Ender Wiggin, anyone? Prettymuch any young character in A Wrinkle in Time and the rest of that series? And that’s just for starters….

    • AnnaW

      Sherlock Holmes, anyone?

  • VoteNeville

    Neville is the true hero. I mean, no one hands him crap, everyone just dumps on poor bumbling Neville, but you’re right..he is Potter’s doppleganger in backstory, and he stands toe to toe with them, despite not being the darling boy of the wizarding aristocracy. Neville is a man of the people, as compared to Harry, Crown Prince Fancy Lad.

  • NelC

    Hermione gets things organised, but Harry is the leader. Hermione can do shit, but Harry gives everyone a reason for going along with it. Hermione annoys everyone until about halfway through the series; nobody but swots would have helped Hermione at the beginning, and there’s a good chance she would have gotten hung up on Elf Liberation instead of anti-Deatheaters if Harry hadn’t been around. Hermione makes a good executive officer but Harry is the commander. Both are valuable skills, but neither would have gotten anywhere without the other.

  • Renee

    I disagree. I don’t think the point was ever that Hermione was underappreciated or that Ron didn’t do anything. Harry appreciated their friendship more than anything – he thought of them to conjure patronuses and tried to stop them following him on his quest for Horcruxes in an attempt to save their lives. Part of the narration after Hermione announced that she had modified her parents’ memories was for Harry to realize just how much she was giving up to accompany him. How many times did Ron and Harry both say that “we wouldn’t have been able to do this without you, Hermione”?

    Ron didn’t contribute much? I also disagree with this. Perhaps he didn’t contribute in the standard “allow me to kill this evil thing and save the world with my bare hands” sort of way, but he gave one of the best contributions anyone could ask for: friendship. Besides which, JK Rowling establishes from the beginning that Ron feels as if he is always shunted to one side, cast in a constant shadow. Ron had his own victories. He got to feel special in his own way: becoming Quidditch Keeper and gainging self-confidence, destroying a Horcrux which tormented him as its final act, realizing Hermione really did care for him… and numerous others.

    Hermione is a bright, wonderful contribution to the story, completely modern as a heroin. However, she is not what the whole plot revolves around, as it should be. Her story is not uncommon – I myself was the straight A student no one liked, that got shoved in the hallways and sneered at for having my nose in a book. JK Rowling simply gave her power in this book, which we should praise her for. There’s nothing better than a witty young woman, not even Harry Potter.

    But again, the point was never Hermione. It was never Ron. Nor, in the end, was it even Harry. It was friendship. The plot revolves around the life of Harry Potter, but the book does not only explain Harry. It explains each Ron and Hermione and then some – it explains love and friendship above all else, and the determination to fight for that love and friendship.

  • OrchidGrowinMan

    As a father of daughters, and also a man who always liked smart girls, I’m torn: the Hermione character embodies all I am most paternally-proud of in my girls, and also all I always admired, and still do, in a distinctly NON-paternal way. I always thought of her as the most important character, and certainly as an excellent role-model for the girls, especially since she suffers a realistic lack of respect for her achievements, but perseveres anyway. When Ron first complements her with the word “brilliant,” it was clear that the author also was committed to the character. The director played-up that scene perfectly.

    Incidentally, in the first movie, Ms Watson has little scars on her lower-lip, just like my oldest: characteristic of a fall while lacking certain teeth. Endearing (to me).

    I think she and Claire Danes (and once-upon-a-time, Emma Thompson) share a penchant for (choosing? being chosen for?) and effectively performing roles that are good to see for coming-up girls.

  • AshleyZ

    Hermione is my favorite character, and indeed she does all the work. The seventh book is really “the Hermione Granger Show, also starring Harry Potter”. I mean, by the middle of book 7, she is still dragging the boys around because they haven’t learned to teleport by themselves. That’s like John Connor not knowing how to drive. They’re bored out of their minds camping on the run in book 7, and yet the boys don’t use the time to learn any useful spells or abilities.

    I never understood what a high-flying go-getter like Hermione saw in a loser like Ron. He’s lazy, he’s less intelligent than his classmates, he’s content to slide by with the lowest passing grade, he’s rude, inconsiderate, and shiftless, and even among a low-status, low-class family, he’s the runt of the bunch. While his family challenged hardship and poverty, Ron was content to ride on the coat tails of his friends.

  • zaire

    Um, in defense of the other two heroes:

    Ron- Ron won wizard’s chess in book 1. They wouldn’t have gotten to the logical fire part without him. Additionally, he sacrificed himself in order to give harry and hermione a chance. He got BEATEN by a chess piece! He was right there with everyone in the DA and fought in the Hall of Prophecies etc. He helped Harry shanghi Prof. Lockhart. He also attempts to defend Hermione’s honor several times (see: slug incident). It was Harry and Ron who went to find Hermione when the troll was out and they are the ones who knocked it out. Admittedly, they were part of the reason she was in there and they accidentally locked her in for a second. He turned out to be a better goalkeeper when he wasn’t being emo. He displayed talent, he just wasn’t as obvious as the others. In book 7, he destroys the locket horcrux which tortured him before he finished it. It was also Ron who saved Harry when the damn thing tried to kill him. He also figured out enough parseltongue to get back into the chamber and was the one who helped everyone escape from the burning room of requirement. Ron was plenty heroic.

    Harry- Harry never asked for anything that happened to him and was famous simply for being the lone survivor of a tragedy. No one was clear on what exactly had happened and there were mixed emotions on the subject for many people. Now, mind you, I’m talking about the stuff he was initially famous for. So, Harry–unlike Hermione and somewhat like Ron–comes to hogwarts with the weight of expectations. Hermione’s parents knew nothing of the wizard world but were pleased and did not seem to pester Hermione about her studies. Ron, had the advantage of growing up with a wizarding family and knew how things worked at Hogwarts. Harry grew up in an abusive household, had fame thrust upon him, knew nothing of his world, and had to take these things with him to Hogwarts. Not to mention, Harry himself was connected to the man who tried to kill him because of that attempt. He gained parseltongue because of this…this didn’t help him in the Chamber of Secrets as far as endearing him to his classmates. Also, unlike both Hermione and Ron, he was marked by his past and, as a famous person, had all of his movements scrutinized. Let’s also not forget he had a teacher who hated him from the beginning. That’s a lot for an eleven year old who just found out he was a wizard and where he got his scar from. That surely isn’t an easy situation. His heart is also surprisingly untouched. he hates the dursley’s but wants to run away more than he wants to maim or murder them. He desires to sacrifice himself for his friends. In the final book, he accepts death willingly (which he has always done when the time came for it). He learns the Patronus charm perfectly at a young age (took him some time, but he made it corporeal when he got it down. brilliant). He buries a house-elf, treats a goblin like an equal, doesn’t care about someone being a squib or muggle born, and doesn’t want the most powerful wand in the world because he believes it is dangerous. Additionally, his treatment of his heirloom house-elf greatly improved when he found out how it suffered. He felt for him. Homeboy is a hero and deserves the book title.

  • Maria

    Unpopular opinion here maybe, but Snape is really a true hero as well. Without him, Harry Potter would never have survived the entire series. It was Snape who, despite his inherent dislike of Harry because he so resembled James, devoted himself to the boy’s protection, all because he loved Lily so much. I know some people might disagree, but Snape is possibly one of the most selfless characters in the entire series, and I wish we were able to learn more about his backstory.

    • Joy

      I couldn’t agree more. I love Snape so much — he really is totally undervalued.

    • Abby

      Totally agree!! The book goes into it in much more detail – how Snape came up with the idea of having the seven Harrys to throw off the death eaters because he had to appear loyal to Voldemort and so had to provide truthful intelligence for example.

      Snape was awesome!

    • Abbey

      Although it was an epic love hate relationship with Snape throughout the entire series the last book finally revealed how I should have felt the entire time. He was a wonderful character and a true hero to Harry.

    • Bruce Gee

      I thought the business about Snape providing the information about the seven Harry’s was one of the dumber parts of book 7. When the DeathEaters are tipped off about the time and date of the departure, it becomes incredibly likely that SOMEBODY will be killed, and a measureable chance that it will be Harry — and the Order can’t afford to lose any of these people.

      And at the time Snape tells Voldemort about the date, he’s already KILLED DUMBLEDORE. If Voldemort doesn’t trust him after that, he’s never going to trust him no matter what he does. And Voldemort shouldn’t have any particular reason to expect him to know what’s going on in the Order anymore, anyway — obviously nobody in the Order would be talking to him after he KILLED DUMBLEDORE.

      My thought was that Rawling just wanted to have a good excuse for a big midair battle at the opening of the book, and couldn’t figure out any other way for Voldemort to have the date.

    • Ellyn

      It’s not about Voldemort trusting him, it’s about persuading Voldemort that he is useful even though no longer a well-positioned spy. Voldemort kills of Death Eaters that don’t pay their way and Snape was necessary to Dumbledore’s plan.

  • Theresa Milstein

    I love this. I shared it on Facebook. You are so right about Hermoine! Thanks for the laugh.

    I posted about Harry Potter today: http://theresamilstein.blogspot.com

  • Hermione Granger

    So…you couldn’t get off last night, eh?

  • sweetpea

    Someone worth mentioning is Narcissa Malfoy. Yes, her husband is evil, and her kid is a total prat, but her love and devotion to her child is admirable. She esseintially saved Harry’s life in the last book by claiming he was dead, after Harry told her that Malfoy was still alive. That’s being a mother, right there, loving your kid no matter what they do. I had a new respect for her by the end of the last book.she truly was a pawn, I almost feel bad for her. Some people will be like, “she was so totally EVIL!” but at the same time, I can’t imagine anything I wouldn’t say or do for my own sons. (maybe I am evil too)

    • Abby

      So TRUE!!!! In Book 6 I begin to respect her a bit more, even if she isn’t concerned about saving Dumbledore’s life, she is concerned about her son. And by the end of Book 7 I was like holy shit Narcissa is amazing! Her husband is evil, but like you said she was a pawn.

      Especially in the book when she runs into the castle through all the fighting to find her son. And that’s what the book is all about, at the end of the day it’s love that will save you. Everything is done for love.

  • Alex

    This is why we have fanfic.

  • Rose

    Screw that. Ron is HOT.

  • anonymous

    While I agree with a lot of what you say I always hate the way people treat the loss of a parent during infancy. People will say things like “oh harry should just get over it he can’t remember them anyway.” or what you mentioned about “replacement” parents. I lost my father when I was two and nothing replaces that person in your life and it hurts just as much even if you never got a chance to know them. And it was not the same for Hermione. First, she got to grow up in loving safe environment with parents that supported her no matter what. Second, she still knew her parents were alive and waiting for her if she came out on the other side of the war. And third, Harry grew up in an environment where he was subjected to verbal and physical abuse, and used as a source of child labor. He was then repeatedly lied to and used throughout adolescence and then learned he had to kill himself to save everyone that he loves. Which he does like a boss. I’m a feminist and I would appreciate a series of popular books centered around a girl or woman other than the crap that is twilight Harry was not a bad character, and there were so many characters in Harry potter that one could look up to and emulate.

    • Dess

      If you’re looking for a series of books centered around a girl or woman then look into The Hunger Games ,which i think could be the next Harry Potter, the movie is coming out next year,with Katniss Everdeen starting off barely getting by in a poor town to being the provider of her family at 16, to being a hero known by everyone or the Thirst series, its about vampires, but their 5,000 year old vampires or crazier than twilight by far newborns Thirst isn’t that popular but believe me, it should be.

  • me

    hermione granger <3 :)

  • Johanna

    Everyone talks about how Hermione saved Harry and Ron but she’s not the only life-saver.
    Hermione wouldn’t be alive anymore without her friends either.
    All three of them need each other!

    In the first book, they wouldn’t have had a chance to get the stone without Ron and Harry would have drowned while trying to get the sword if Ron hadn’t helped him.
    In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Harry saved Hermione and Sirius from the dementors, for example.

    And Ron definitely deserves someone like Hermione, he stayed as Harry’s friend despite always standing in his shadow.

    • http://twitter.com/Ngjo3y1313 Ng Qi Lin

      who the fuck sent her to the fucking troll? think about it.

    • me

      ron the prick

    • Anonymous

      Ron didn’t send her to the troll. No one knew there was a troll in the school. Hermione went to the bathroom by herself because she was upset about something Ron said about her – which was harsh, but also partially true because I can understand why people would find Hermione annoying and conceited in the first book/movie.

  • Morgan

    Wow. All your Ron Weasley-hate is really bringing me down, man. Believe me, I’ve been a ridiculously dedicated fan from the begining, and Hermione is one of my favourite characters. She breaks all the stereotypes for bookish girls out there, falls for the wonderfully adorable Ron, rather than expectedly falling for the hero. And she can really kick some Death Eater ass. But let’s not forget the fact that Ron is an incredibly loyal, loving friend. He can be moody sometimes, and he talks with food in his mouth, but that just makes him a more relatable, human character. Ron and Hermione are complete opposites, so their personalities balance each other. He makes her laugh, she makes sure he gets his work done. Harry needs both of them as friends. He had the crappiest childhood someone could ever imagine and still ended up being a moral person. That’s pretty amazing. Then, he continued to have a rough school life, and even after he lost a mother, father, godfather, and more, he continued providing for the ones he loved to protect them. HE WAS WILLING TO DIE SO VOLDEMORT WOULD BE DESTROYED. HE WALKED TO HIS OWN DEATH WILLINGLY. Just because Hermione’s a really awesome character doesn’t mean she should be the main character; that’s not what the story is about. Severus Snape isn’t the title character, but he was important all along. All of the characters were made with thought and interact beautifully with one another. Let’s also not forget the fact that she would have been squashed by a Mountain Troll if two certain eleven-year-olds hadn’t come to her rescue. Or,she would have been murdered by Bellatrix Lestrange if Ronald and Harry weren’t there.

  • Gayatri

    Go read the books instead. It’ll paint a better picture of Harry being the true hero.

  • Jesse

    i totally agree, i mean Harry always got off way too easy. Ron, Hermoine, and even the twins had to sacrifice things for him. I mean one lost an ear, while the other died. Let’s not forget all of the other people who died!

    and Neville… he should of been the dude to kick voldemorts butt in the end, i mean he’s always been known as the joker character; clumsy, always the one getting hurt and losing stuff, and even always havin his wand broken!

  • LExi

    siiigh look its called harry potter the glasses the scar the wand if you dont like write your own book. Harry had to make sacrafices to apparently you didnt watch the movies harry didnt get off easy. All 3 of the characters had thir own special niche in story. Once again if you dont like it RIGHT UR OWN FRIGGIN BOOK gorsh

    • sillysocks

      And if you don’t like the author’s opinion, write your own friggin article gorsh, but learn to spell first. And to use the comma.

  • C.N.

    oh geez Snape’s name is not Sirius!
    It is Severus.
    Whoever wrote this.
    Sirius is Harry’s God father.
    AT LEAST check your work?

    • Rob

      What the heck are you talking about? They didn’t claim that Snape is Sirius. Pretty sure the author was talking about different people. Check your work.

  • Mishamon

    Look, i love Hermione, really i do. She’s probably one of my all-time favorite literary characters!

    But i completely disagree with this article. How many people here would actually read a book talking about Hermione’s boring muggle life and how she helps out her stupid friends do dangerous activities? Hermione is a really well developed character, but not in the way Harry is.

    Yes, she’s smart and witty and pretty amazing all over. But come on, do you really want to read about that? It’d be like reading Twilight where the main character is just awesome in every way and everyone should love her. No, Hermione is there to support Harry and Ron. If you want her to be the main character in a story, go write your own fanfic.

    • Hermione Lean Granger

      Why thank you but I really for real love harry potter and yes I am the real Hermione Granger Emma Watson so fuck off i want harry potter

    • Alexander Flos

      The Harry Potter series might have been a wonderful work of imaginative fiction, but JK Rowling does not stay true to her own words through out the series. Rowling clearly stated in an interview with Radcliffe that she was going to kill Ron of around book 5 (specifically in the ministry fight at the end), but decided not to (so example 1 of her changing her original intent rather far into the series). Secondly, the movie producers and writers never knew what JK would write in the ‘next book’ (they could only speculate from the previous text she had written) and a five year old can see that they clearly making a point to give as much romantic screen time to harry and hermione as JK Rowling would let them get away with (she did have a say in every movie and what scenes would be shown) — i never saw any of the movies until I kept hearing about Harry Potter when the last book had come out — so i read the 7 book series in about a week and was pissed with how the romance made no sense whatsoever (especially for teenagers!) — if the scene from the Deathly Hallows pt1 movie of Harry and Hermione’s visit to Godric’s Hollow not make a clear point then i give up (Rowling had them go as a married muggle couple using polyjuice while the movie gave Radcliffe and Watson the screen to show the world that they truly were soul mates from the beginning) — and my last bit, which has completely twisted my brain, is Rowling’s logic for Hermione to end up with Ron and Harry with Ginny — In reality, which Rowling based Hermione off her own teenage self, Potter and Granger would have making babies within a week after Ron’s bail on them, and Ron would have ended up like his character is clearly through out the series: Confused about love and therefore single. Hermione and Harry are a fit from a psychological, physical, emotional and cognitive maturity level — Ron and Hermione? He can be her goofy younger brother but her lover, please…

  • Kate

    LOL! This is hilarious! I love them all to bits. And I think Harry Potter is just amazing the way it is.

  • Emily

    Amen, sister.
    I agree with the Ron stuff. All series long he bullies Hermione, and then they get married. Whaaa…?
    I started reading fanfiction, and I found one perfect for you, Joy. Its on a site called fanfiction.net, the story being Harry Potter and the Champion’s Champion by DriftWood1965. Its a re-written version of the fourth book, and is apparently longer than said book. (Its also very, very funny.)
    Now, go read it. Its awesome.

  • darknaruto31

    ok here the deal i think at first harry and Hermione Granger were so-post
    to get together. but in the last two book j.r i heard when back and rewrite them for a happy ending for disney that why he got hook up with ron sister Ginny Weasley and hermione got ron that totally suck bye the way
    so every one live happy ever after.
    :(

    • Alexander Flos

      I have done quite a bit of research on the Harry Potter phenomenon (High School English Teacher 11th and 12th graders — i hear it all, believe me) and it definitely was an amazing seven book series no doubt — wonderful imagination for telling ancient lessons for life
      *Note: I am used to always reading literature in preparation of providing ‘constructive feedback and criticism’ and just because an author makes millions and millions of dollars on a book series does not mean that it lacked major literary flaws and obvious ‘convenience” changes that keep the book series from falling apart — What bothered me most about the series is how the TRIO characters are not held to true to their true development — i understand it’s fiction, but once the characters are created, they become as real as night and day within the fictional text they now live (this is a major universal literary rule that all authors and serious readers must adhere to) — There are a plethora of examples to support the ‘HP/HG destined soul-mate’ theory, but way to many holes and contradictions to support the RW/HG getting married theory while HP/Ginny end up married (Yeah for disney getting Molly Weasley’s little dream as portrayed in the Epilogue of Bk7, which should have NEVER been added (made me want to burn the whole damn series), and kudos to Rowling for confusing the hell out of the movie creators b/c if the HG in BK4 & BK5 doesn’t have ‘i am HP’s girl’ written all over her forehead (watch the movies and compare the books from the go if you really want to see where the turbulence starts –everyone agrees that Hermione is strong-willed and assertive (e.g. punches the son of a top death eater in the face) and i don’t think she would have held out her feelings for Harry for seven years much less her whole life (epilogue suggests obviously) if she was truly the character Rowling had created her to be — the whole world of literary connoisseurs, including myself, was waiting for the HP/HG CONFESSION chapter after Ron showed his true colors on the Horcrux hunt and bailed — Hermione Granger was not a character that ‘settles’ for what she can get (i think that Rowling made that clear yet the whole of book six and seven radiates that tone — Ron was paired perfectly with Lavender, who was also goofy and by no means stupid as portrayed by the movies to play her down (LB & RW were the matched in BK6, Harry let go of Ginny in BK6, and Hermione’s still right by Harry’s side) Rowling had everything set up perfect still for the final book and still managed to botch it up with some very unrealistic reasoning —especially for teenagers! I took votes in my high school classes, and why Rowling may be loved, her last book failed most all of them romantically, which is VERY IMPORTANT if your target audience is teenagers (FYI Rowling) — My final say is Rowling portrayed terrible lie about the reality of lasting relationships to from childhood through young adulthood — The mere fact that there are millions of fanfics rewriting the last book specifically for the soul mates to end up together should say enough — you don’t need a masters in literature to figure that out

  • Cissy

    Hermione is definitely one of my favourite characters, I can personally relate to her, and she is a brilliant character, well defined with a lot of depth. But I completely disagree with your article. I would firstly like to say that Rowling came up with the idea of HARRY POTTER being the boy who lived, and all the adventures having HIM as the main character. Hermione is just one of the many characters created to support him. Yes, she is one of the main characters but her life wouldn’t be nearly as interesting as Harry’s. Her parents didn’t die when she was one, she isn’t the girl who lived, and she doesn’t have some psycho wizard going after her. She grows up in a safe environment with loving and caring parents, having to live up to no expectations. I’m sorry but if I had to read a book about this life I could simply pick up Twilight. But Hermione turns out to be a witch, goes to hogwarts. She’s initially picked on, but her life is saved by Harry and Ron and they become friends. She then helps out Harry and Ron throughout the whole series, and turns out to be a VERY important character. But honestly, you want to compare her life to Harry’s? Harry is the chosen one, THE hero. Hermione is A hero. I admire her character but I would never have wished for the books to be about Hermione Granger. Her character isn’t as defined as Harry’s is, not as complex or deep. About Snape (comments) please don’t give me this crap about Snape being selfless whatsoever. Snape only cared about two people: himself and Lily Potter. Whatever he did he did because of his love for Lily, not because he was a good person, he wasn’t. Yes he was bullied by James, but he bullied muggle borns, associated with death eaters and intended to be one. That’s no good is it? James changed for Lily, Snape didn’t. He gave away a FAMILY and asked for only Lily to be saved. He couldn’t care less about the ONE year old boy and his father. He held a grudge against a DEAD man and passed it on to his innocent son. Yes he was bullied by James, but he bullied Harry for a stupid reason so that makes him no better man than James. He bullied poor Neville because Voldemort had preferred to kill another boy than him! Snape was what poor Neville feared the most! His boggart turned into him! So, even if he was a double agent, he wasn’t selfless, or a good man. I completely respect Narcissa also, she’s one of my favourite characters. Ron isn’t one of my favourite characters, but I like him, and Hermione is in love with him, so she obviously finds a lot more than I do in him. I also want to give Luna, my favourite character, some credit for being so awesome, go loony! About your article, well too bad then, ’cause the series is about Harry after all. Not happy? Write your own book about Hermione, see if it becomes as successful.
    It’s canon, (and so is James and Lily), get over it :)

    • Snoggler

      Harry fighting Voldermort is selfless? it’s not like he could make peace with Voldermort….either he kills voldermort or voldermort kills him, it’s just self-defense. As for sacrificing himself to make Voldermort mortal again, how many people have risked their lives protecting Harry in the belief that he’s the chosen one and would defeat Voldermort? Also considering both Dumbledore and Snape died in the hope that Harry would willingly die to save the world, it’d be terribly selfish if he’d chosen to live and let Voldermort continue his reign of terror. He ‘s lived as long as he has because Dumbledore and Snape had been protecting him. Coincidentally, a very minor character called Regulus Black died for the exact same goal – making Voldermort defeatable. It’d be very unheroic of Harry Potter if he couldn’t even match the courage of a minor character. While he’s officially the hero, he’s not by any means the most heroic character in the series.

  • Snoggler

    Couldn’t agree more. She does most of the work, and Saint Potter takes credits for them, Ron just mugs around and provides comic relief.Harry maybe is the official hero, but Hermione is the author’s alter ego and it shows. Hermione is also the movies’ scriptwriter Klove’s favourite character, just shows how dull Harry Potter is as the central character. And all the Hermione ships in fanfic show how lame is the Ron and Hermione romance….

  • me

    ron is getting in the way , he should just marry lavender or some random character it obvious only harry and hermonie d the work while ron is not a true friend and leaves when they need him the most , and even when they need him they don’t really need him , gosh and he’s always bullied hermonie when he said no wonder she has no friends while she cried to tears in the toilets , beng saved when only harry realised she was gone while a effing troll walking about .

    • Anonymous

      Ron is a loyal friend. The reason he left them was because the Horcrux necklace he was wearing was messing with his head. But he wanted to come back the whole time & thought about them. Ron is one of the few characters in HP who is easily relatable, because he has a good heart but he is flawed. He also adds a sense of humour to the series. And while it was harsh of him to say “its no wonder (Hermione) has any friends” – he only said it because Hermione waa acting quite up herself in the beginning.

  • Me

    First of all, I disagree with you. I love Hermione, but even though Hermione is the smartest, clearly, the goal of the book HARRY POTTER was not to make the perfect person the main character. Besides, face the facts, Harry’s life is a lot more interesting than Hermione’s. Would you really like to hear about how over the summer, Hermione’s parents took her to ice cream? Second of all, Ron does a lot more than you think and he is an important character. Even though he may be somewhat if a slob, that makes him HUMAN and a REALISTIC character. Lastly, this is J.K. Rowling’s series, not yours, this is what she wanted, and her books are perfectly AMAZING the way they are. Do hate all you wan but nothing will change.
    -me
    P.S. Your article disgusts me. All the mean things you say and the mean words you use, if you wanted wanted to post this, could you of found a better way to say it? Just think about that.