Over 20 year since the first Harry Potter book hit the shelves, the series still has a cult fan following. Over the years, the franchise has spawned movie adaptations, spin-offs, video games, a theme park, a play... You name it, there's a Harry Potter version of it! With the Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them series now being in full swing, it's likely that more and more Potterheads will continue to join the fold as the years go by. It seems like JK Rowling always has another Potter-related idea up her sleeve to keep the franchise going!
Although there's now heaps and heaps of Harry Potter material in the public eye, there are still some questions about the franchise that are yet to be answered. Fans always want to find out a little bit more about their favourite characters or solve one of the many Potter-related mysteries that are still out there. Considering just how popular the Harry Potter franchise is, it's perhaps unsurprising that there are hundreds of fan theories out there!
Some of these theories have turned out to be canon, with JK Rowling confirming their validity in interviews or on social media. How cool must it be to know you successfully revealed a Harry Potter secret? Still, this is a possibility that lots of Potterheads can only dream of. The vast majority of Harry Potter fan theories are still unaddressed. Some of them are plausible; others are so off-the-wall ridiculous that JK Rowling doesn't need to dignify them with a response. Here are just some of the strange Harry Potter fan theories that we simply can't imagine being true.
25 Ron Is Dumbledore
Let's start with the unquestionably odd theory that Ron is actually Dumbledore. Yes, you read that correctly. These two popular characters are apparently the same person. According to some fans, Dumbledore is an older version of Ron who time-travelled back to his own school days. Evidence to support this theory ranges from the fact that both characters are natural gingers to the fact they both like socks. JK Rowling actually debunked this theory on Twitter, but honestly, she didn't need to. It's too straight-up ridiculous to be true!
24 McGonagall Is A Villain
We refuse to believe that this fan theory is correct because the prospect of it being real is too upsetting to face.
Professor McGonagall can't be bad!
No matter how many fans claim she's a secret Death Eater, we refuse to accept it! According to this theory, Minerva McGonagall was one of Voldemort's most dedicated Death Eaters. She deliberately hinders Harry's attempts to triumph over the Dark Lord because she's passionately committed to the villainous cause. The fact she's an animagus allegedly makes her shifty too. Yeah... It's a no from us.
23 Snape Is A Vampire
Years before Twilight caused a huge surge in popularity for brooding, mysterious vampires, JK Rowling included her own miserable blood-sucker in the Harry Potter series. At least, that's what some fans have believed for years. There's a whole section of the fandom that thinks Severus Snape is a vampire. Yes, he's pale and lives in the dark dungeons. Sure, he wears a lot of black clothes. However, there's no concrete evidence that he feeds on blood. For one, he's frequently seen in the daylight, something that's traditionally described as dangerous to vampires!
22 It Was All A Dream
Anyone's who's studied English at a high school level knows that you should never end a story with "and it was all a dream."
It's a cliche that you shouldn't use—ever.
But what if JK Rowling has been hiding a dream-like ending in the Harry Potter series all along? Some fans believe that the events of the book take place in 11-year-old Harry's head. He's made so miserable by the Dursleys' treatment of him that he retreats into fantasies about being a wizard. Talk about tragic! We hope this theory isn't true, just for poor Harry's sake...
21 The Dursleys Hate The Horcrux
Everyone knows that Harry's treatment at the hand of the Dursleys is downright despicable. However, what if their awful behaviour wasn't entirely their fault? What if the fact that Harry was a Horcrux negatively affected them? From the events of Deathly Hallows, we know that being near a Horcrux can make people pretty miserable. Perhaps the fact that the Dursleys were living with one under their roof made them into rude, abusive idiots? To be honest, it seems more likely that they were just awful people to start with. JK Rowling has said as much!
20 Dumbledore Is The Personification Of Death
Okay, this is a fan theory that's definitely true—JK Rowling has confirmed it. However, it's still difficult to picture a character as "good" as Dumbledore as being Death himself! Admittedly, the later Harry Potter books revealed a darker side of old Albus that changed a lot of fans' opinions on him. However, nobody could have guessed that he did represent the Death to Harry, Voldemort, and Snape's Three Brothers. If you're not sure which brothers we're referring to, just read up on the Peverells—aka, the original owners of the Deathly Hallows. It all fits!
19 Mary Poppins Meets Hogwarts
Time for a slightly more fun (and less afterlife-related) fan theory. There are some Potterheads out there who've decided that Mary Poppins—the fictional nanny from P. L. Travers' classic children's books—is a witch.
Like, a witch who went to Hogwarts.
Aside from the fact that Travers passed before the Wizarding World even became a thing, this theory is somewhat plausible. Mary does have a magical air to her, and a bag that defies the laws of physics. However, we doubt that JK Rowling contacted P.L. Travers from beyond the grave to arrange this little crossover.
18 Ginny's Love Potion
When Harry Potter suddenly fell in love with Ginny Weasley in Half-Blood Prince, a lot of fans were pretty taken aback. Sure, they made a cute couple, but their romance was very abrupt! Why did Harry suddenly start seeing Ginny in a romantic light having already known her for years? Well, some fans believe a love potion was involved. That's right: Ginny slipped a bit of potion into Harry's pumpkin juice, and the rest is history. We're going to choose to ignore this theory simply because it's incredibly creepy. Ginny would NEVER.
17 Crookshanks Is Lily Potter's Cat
In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Hermione decided to get a pet cat named Crookshanks. This feline's main role in the plot was to repeatedly try to eat Ron's rat Scabbers—aka, Peter Pettigrew in his Animagus form. Some fans have speculated that Crookshanks hated Scabbers not because he was a rat and thus prey, but because Crookshanks used to belong to Lily Potter—and the cat could sense that Scabbers was Pettigrew, the man who betrayed Lily. It’s a cool idea, but perhaps a little bit far-fetched.
16 George Weasley And The Chocolate Factory
You’ve got to feel sorry for George Weasley. Not only did he lose his ear in the Wizarding War, he also lost his twin, Fred. JK Rowling has said that George was never quite the same after this, and fans have a lot of ideas about what happened next. One theory suggests that George decided to open a factory filled with the prank sweets that he and Fred once created. He decided to escape his grief by playing the character of a slightly eccentric and twisted chocolate inventor, taking on the name Willy Wonka. Talk about a weird potential crossover!
15 Why Hire Lockhart?
Here's a question for all of the Chamber of Secrets fans out there: why on earth did Dumbledore hire Gilderoy Lockhart?
The guy was obviously a self-absorbed, idiotic narcissist!
Even if he did do all of the amazing things he claimed he did in his books, Lockhart would hardly be the obvious choice for a Professor. Lots of fans have speculated that Dumbledore chose Lockhart simply for a laugh. He knew how ridiculous his new hire was, and he knew he was a fake—he just wanted to expose him and then laugh about it.
14 A Muggle-Wizard War?
Throughout the Harry Potter books, it's heavily implied wizards and Muggles don't exactly have the best relationship. After all, why would wizards go so far to conceal their own existence if things were all rosy with their non-magithat cal counterparts? Lots of fans have speculated about the reason why wizards and Muggles don't get on, and many theories point to a previous war. Perhaps the Muggles and wizards fought, and the wizards won. It would explain why we've been so scared of magic throughout history! Still, this idea has by no means been confirmed to be true.
13 Draco The Werewolf
What is it with Potterheads deciding that various characters are actually sinister magical creatures?
Poor Draco Malfoy is facing accusations of being a werewolf!
In the final two Harry Potter books, poor Draco is in a bit of a state. He looks ill, he's clearly stressed, and at one point he's even caught crying. It's implied in the books that Draco is in distress because of the stress of working for Lord Voldemort. However, some fans believe that Draco was actually struggling to come to terms with his lycanthropy. Needless to say, it's probably not an accurate theory!
12 Sirius And Remus—More Than Friends?
Every fandom has its ships. In a fictional world so vast as that of Harry Potter, it's perhaps unsurprising that there are dozens of fan pairings out there. One popular ship is that of Sirius Black and Remus Lupin. If this love story is true, it's a pretty tragic one! Remus had to go through the pain of thinking his love had ended the Potters for over a decade. Of course, the two are reunited in Prisoner of Azkaban... Only for Sirius to perish two books later. We're going to debunk this theory simply because it's too painful to accept.
11 The Heir Of Gryffindor
In Chamber of Secrets, lots of Hogwarts students believe that Harry Potter is the Heir of Slytherin thanks to his public Parseltongue outburst. However, what if the opposite was true, and Harry was actually the Heir of Gryffindor? Since Tom Riddle is actually Slytherin's heir, the final battle between Harry and Voldemort would be the final conflict between the descendants of two feuding founders. It would also explain why Harry was able to pull the Sword of Gryffindor out of the Sorting Hat! Still, you'd think someone would have told Harry if he did have this heritage...
10 Hagrid's Tragic Patronus
In a pretty sad interview a few years ago, JK Rowling revealed that Hogwarts' beloved gamekeeper Rubeus Hagrid can't actually produce a Patronus charm. She implied that since Hagrid was expelled from Hogwarts pretty early on in his studies, he never got the chance to learn the spell. However, fans have speculated that there's an even sadder reason behind Hagrid's lack of a Patronus: he doesn't have enough happy memories to produce one. He did have a tough childhood... Poor guy!
9 Harry The Immortal
Remember the prophecy relating to Harry and Voldemort that states "either must perish at the hand of the other"? What if it means that Harry is basically immortal? The prophecy implies that Harry and Voldemort can only perish if they're ended by each other. Since Voldemort is now gone, Harry technically can't perish at all, since his arch-nemesis isn't around to end him! It's a sad prospect for the Boy Who Lived since it means he can no longer be reunited with his parents in the afterlife. We're going to hope that this theory isn't true!
8 Trelawney's Talent
Professor Trelawney's divination class is something of a running joke in Prisoner of Azkaban. Harry and Ron gently mock their teacher for being a bit of a fraud, while Hermione quits the class altogether since she can't tolerate all of the "fake" prophecies. However, lots of fans think that Trelawney is actually a better seer than any Hogwarts students thought.
Lots of her seemingly ridiculous prophecies did come true!
For one, she did correctly predict the whole Harry/Voldemort final battle. She also knew that Lavender Brown's rabbit would pass away, and apparently predicted Dumbledore's passing. Spooky!
7 Even More Foreshadowing
Throughout the Harry Potter series, JK Rowling proved time and time again that she's the queen of foreshadowing. However, even the most committed readers may have missed one hint that fans claim to have found in Order of the Phoenix. When Harry and his friends visit St Mungo's Hospital, they pass a number of signs that read Creature-Induced Injuries; Dangerous; Dai Llewellyn Ward; Serious Bites. If you put the first word of each phrase together, it reads "Creature Dangerous Dai Serious"... Or, "Kreacher Dangerous, [Perish] Sirius"! It could be a coincidence, or it could be a genius-level clue.
6 Harry And Ron's Prediction
If you believe this Harry Potter fan theory, Professor Trelawney isn't the only seer at Hogwarts. Some fans think that Harry and Ron actually predicted the plot of Goblet of Fire in a Prisoner of Azkaban divination scene! While doing their homework, they jokily suggest that Harry is “in danger of burns”, will “lose a treasured possession”, and will then get “stabbed in the back”. In Goblet of Fire, Harry faces a fire-breathing dragon, has to rescue Ron—who he's "lost"—and is then betrayed by Mad-Eye Moody. Coincidence, or powerful divination? Who knows...
5 Neville's Wand
For most of his Hogwarts education, Neville Longbottom doesn't have his own wand. He uses the wand of his father, who's in St Mungo's Hospital after being tortured by Bellatrix Lestrange. It's a noble tribute from Neville, but it may have actually hindered him! As we all know, the wand chooses the wizard. If you want to perform well while casting spells, you should use the wand that chose you. However, Neville breaks this rule by choosing a wand for himself. The wand never quite behaves for him, hence why his Hogwarts experience is a bit crazy at times!
4 Harry And Hermione Are Siblings
Okay, this fan theory is straight-up bizarre. On some corners of the Internet, a group of passionate Potterheads believe that Harry and Hermione are twins who got separated after the passing of their parents. Harry got sent to live with his aunt and uncle, while Hermione got a more affluent upbringing with her Muggle parents. It's a fascinating idea, but it's also a direct copy of the plot of Star Wars. You can basically just replace "Harry and Hermione" with "Luke and Leia". Have some originality, fan theorists!
3 Rita Skeeter's True Identity
Rita Skeeter has to be one of the most aggravating characters in the Harry Potter franchise. She's a ruthless journalist with no redeeming qualities. Unfortunately, some Potterheads actually think this awful human is a real person.
Yep—she's living among us, and her name is JK Rowling.
Confused? Well, some fans think that the Harry Potter series is actually an exposé written by Skeeter to get her own back on the wizarding community that shunned her. She's revealed their existence to the Muggles—take that, wizards! She used the pseudonym JK Rowling to be on the safe side.
2 Mrs Norris, Or Mrs Filch?
Poor Mrs Norris doesn't exactly have the best time in the Harry Potter series. The only time Filch's cat is really relevant to the plot is when she gets petrified in Chamber of Secrets.
However, some fans think that Mrs Norris is hiding a few secrets of her own.
There's a theory out there that suggests Mrs Norris is actually Mrs Filch—she was human once, and the caretaker's wife! However, a bad experience with transfiguration meant that she got stuck in the body of a cat for all eternity. It would explain why Filch is so miserable...
1 Harry Is King Arthur
If you're familiar with Arthurian mythology, you'll know that the Harry Potter series references King Arthur and his knights quite a few times. For one, the wizard Merlin has his own chocolate frog card—and wizards frequently use "Merlin's beard" as an exclamation! However, some fans like to take the connection between the Potterverse and King Arthur a little bit further. They claim that Harry Potter himself is a reincarnation of this ancient king! Well, he did pull a magical sword out of a hat... Not quite a stone, but similar, right?!