I don’t know what on Earth I was thinking when I made this the third item on the list. Like, okay, sure. Let’s just start simple, ease ourselves in. Your background with HP and your ranking, both of which you probably know by heart, and then bam! pick only 5 characters of the several hundred and defend why they mean so much to you.
I’m starting this list (which is in no particular order) without knowing how it’s going to end. Come on this journey with me.
Remus John Lupin, werewolf, sometimes known as Moony, one of the four creators of the Marauder’s Map, married to Nymphadora, usually known as Tonks, and I taught you how to produce a Patronus, Harry, which takes the form of a stag. Okay, so yes. As an adult, I can see all the ways in which Lupin failed. He didn’t dare to tell Dumbledore about the map or that Sirius was an Animagus (hella irresponsible), he never had the nerve to tell James and Sirius off for bullying Snape, and his reaction to Tonks’s pregnancy was…less than chivalrous. All facts. You know what else is a fact, though? Humans can fuck up and love imperfectly and still be worthy of our adoration. When it really counted, he possessed all the traits that set Gryffindors apart.
Hermione Granger For years and years, I resisted naming Hermione as one of my favorite characters. It felt boring and predictable for me, a bossy know-it-all with frizzy hair and buck teeth, to idolize her. Plus, she was a main character. How cliché. In refusing to acknowledge the impact that she had on me, however, I think I sort of perceived her as this flawless, stale character (what’s the straitlaced, bookish version of that trope, I wonder…a Maryanne Susan?) and never wholly appreciated how intergral her contributions were to saving the Wizarding World. Know better, do better.
Molly Weasley My feelings about Mama Weasley have followed a pretty conventional trajectory. As a teenager, I was fond of her, but I found her to be overbearing, short-sighted and desperately unfair. As a mom, on the other hand, I loves me some Mollywobbles. From the minute Harry stumbles across her path, she takes up the mantle of protecting him in every way she knows how. She is occasionally blinded by her loving instincts, and she makes many attempts to put the trio off their adventuring, which, in hindsight could have led to the destruction of the Wizarding World, but let’s be real for a sec. Molly was the only adult in this whole mess that questioned the assertion that a group of unqualified teenagers was their best bet against the pressing threat of unknowable evil.
Luna Lovegood Luna is an absolute delight and screw everyone that picked on her. She spoke truth to power at every given opportunity and never let snide comments or derisive looks stand in the way of being exactly who she was and honestly, what is cooler than not caring if you’re cool? Nolite te bastardes carborundorum, Luna girl.
Minerva McGonagall I struggled with this last spot. And not just because I didn’t want to give it to yet another Gryffindor (though that does pain me a bit). I always struggle with rounding out lists because I feel like I’m excluding so many worthy candidates. For example, Ginny is really cool. Harry has finally grown on me. Snape definitely sucks but I still like him for some reason. It was tough to narrow it down, but in the end, I went with McG because she just kills it at everything she does. On the surface, she seems like this stuffy old schoolmarm, but once you get under that prim and proper façade, she is one tough cookie, who knows when rules are meant to be broken. Name a better ride or die. I’ll wait.
I know I left a few fan faves off my list that may appear on your personal list. Tell me who they are!