When Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone (Sorcerer’s Stone in the US) was first published in June of 1997, no one could have predicted that it would create a rabid fanbase on its way to universal success. From humble beginnings sprang six more books, eight movies that have grossed over $2 trillion at the box office and multiple theme parks with more content from the wizarding world in the works.
Given the unexpected explosion in popularity, it’s fair to say that Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling had no way of predicting that her books would come under strict scrutiny from millions of fans. While it’s practically impossible to create a story that will be completely satisfying to everyone, Rowling managed to get pretty close. For the most part, fans of the books and movies are content to ignore gaping plot holes or flaws in the story’s logic, but some problems were too big for fans to ignore.
What does a normal fan do when they come across an egregious plot hole? Well, they make a scathing meme of course! Some of these memes have perfectly fine explanations, but some absolutely destroy the logic of the series.
Here are 20 Hilarious Harry Potter Memes That Prove The Series Makes No Sense.
20 The Ravenclaw Eagle?
There is some debate about what the symbol for house Ravenclaw actually is. Most people assume it’s a raven, but, when looking at the Hogwarts crest the symbol appears to be a golden eagle. Fans have argued about what the crest is actually portraying, but in chapter 15, ‘Beauxbatons and Durmstrang’ of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Ravenclaw’s symbol is described as a “bronze eagle.”
One suggestion put forward by fans of the series is a different definition of the word raven. When used as an adjective the word actually means “black.” If J.K. Rowling was actually referring to the jet black claws of a golden eagle rather than the claws of a raven, the name would make a lot more sense.
Ultimately, Rowena Ravenclaw could have just picked an eagle because she liked them, or perhaps she just wanted to drive Harry Potter fans crazy.
19 Time-Turner Trouble
There are a lot of magical tools that are way too overpowered in the Harry Potter universe. Few are as powerful as the Time-Turner. Given to Hermione by Professor McGonagall in her third year to take more classes than hours in the day, it was eventually used at the end of the year to save the lives of Sirius Black and Buckbeak. Begging the question, why didn’t they just use the time-turner to save Harry’s Parents?
When asked about it in an interview with CBBC in 2007 the author said, “it would take us into "Terminator" territory. Well, the time-turner was a very difficult invention for me, because it created as many problems as it solved.”
It would have been difficult to go back far enough to save Harry’s Parents. The time-turner only goes back one hour for every time it’s spun. It would have required over 100,000 turns.
18 Harry's Education
It seems like every year at Hogwarts follows a predictable pattern and it almost always ends in some kind of attack from Lord Voldemort. In the first book, it takes him a year to figure out the obstacles on the way to the Philosopher’s Stone. In the second, he needs a full year for his Horcrux to gain enough power. In the fourth, he specifically wants to kill Harry during the Triwizard tournament. In the sixth, it takes a full year for Malfoy to repair the Vanishing Cabinet.
It makes sense that Voldemort would only attack Harry during the school year because there were blood wards protecting the Dursley house. Additionally, Voldemort often needed access to a specific item or person in Hogwarts to complete his plan. It is pretty convenient, however, that Voldemort’s minions always needed a full year to complete their tasks.
17 Cloak Confusion
When Harry was given the invisibility cloak during his first year at Hogwarts he had no way of knowing that it was actually one of the famed Deathly Hallows. Made by Death in the 13th century, the Deathly Hollows were three of the most powerful items in the wizarding world and were thought to only be part of a fairy tale.
Sought out and used by Lord Voldemort, the three Deathly Hollows were thought to make whoever controlled all three invincible. So, what does the boy who lived decide to do when he happens upon one of the most powerful items to ever exist? He uses it to sneak into the library after hours.
Fans didn’t think of many better uses. There are several variations on this meme including the rather creepy suggestion that Harry ought to have used to cloak to sneak into the girl’s locker room.
16 Good Brothers?
Fred and George Weasley stole the Marauder’s Map from Caretaker Filch’s office during their first year at Hogwarts. The mischievous twins used the magical map to cause, and get away with, a lot of trouble before leaving school. In addition to being a very detailed guide to Hogwarts, the Marauder’s Map also provides live movements of all of the castle’s occupants, even if they’re disguised.
In Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban, it is revealed that Ron’s pet rat Scabbers was actually a shape-shifting Peter Pettigrew. Ron’s brothers, who were in possession of the map for a full four years before later giving it to Harry, must have seen their little brother curled up with some guy named Peter throughout the three years they were together at Hogwarts. Why didn't they say anything?
15 Finally, A Normal Year
A lot of things happened after the events of the Harry Potter series. Harry and Ginny got married, Draco Malfoy had a child named Scorpius Hyperion, and Professor McGonagall went on to become the headmaster at Hogwarts. Another thing that almost definitely happened was young witches and wizards actually being able to receive a proper education.
Whether it was a troll in the dungeon, chicanery at the Triwizard tournament or a battle that virtually destroyed the school, Harry Potter’s tenure at Hogwarts was fraught with educational distractions. It seemed that practically every year final exams had to be postponed, the House Cup was affected by a major event, or students were under threat of serious bodily harm.
With Harry and company now done with their time at Hogwarts, it can be assumed that students can finally return to their very important Herbology classes.
14 Invisible Baby!
In a post on Pottermore in 2016, J.K. Rowling explained how one of the Deathly Hallows came into Harry Potter’s possession. In the post, Rowling explained that one of Harry’s ancestors, “married a beautiful young witch by the name of Iolanthe Peverell, who came from the village of Godric’s Hollow. She was the granddaughter of Ignotus Peverell (the original owner of the cloak). In the absence of male heirs, she, the eldest of her generation, had inherited her grandfather’s invisibility cloak. It was, Iolanthe explained to Hardwin, a tradition in her family that the possession of this cloak remained a secret, and her new husband respected her wishes. From this time on, the cloak was handed down to the eldest in each new generation.”
Over the millennia of Potter children with access to the cloak surely a few of them got into trouble with it.
13 Ravenclaws Rule!
In the first movie, when Harry first starts to receive letters from Hogwarts, he missed a lot of opportunities. Harry was alone when he picked up the very first letter address to Mr. H Potter, The Cupboard Under The Stairs, 4, Privet Drive. If he had simply opened the letter immediately instead of walking into the kitchen with it, Dudley never would have stolen the letter and Uncle Vernon would never have had to keep other letters from coming. Vernon’s attempts are also comically misguided. You would think that he would be happy to finally be rid of the nephew he dislikes so much.
When Harry finally gets a chance to read one of the letters addressed to him, he spends ages trying to grab one out of mid-air rather than just picking up one of the dozens of letters that were already sitting on the ground.
12 Liquid Luck
Felix Felicis, also known as liquid luck, is a magical potion that makes whoever drinks it extremely lucky for a short period of time. During that time everything they try will be successful. Given the existence of a potion that basically makes every go well for you, readers asked, why didn’t Harry drink liquid luck before trying to kill Voldemort?
There are a few reasons that Harry didn’t use, and didn’t need, liquid luck. The first reason is that it comes with several unwanted side-effects. Too much liquid luck can cause giddiness and reckless behavior while large doses can be fatal. In addition, the potion is extremely dangerous if brewed incorrectly and is very difficult to make.
A better question is, why wouldn’t somebody use the last of their liquid luck to make sure they brewed their next batch of liquid luck correctly?
11 Draw A Line Down The Room
After Harry was chosen as a champion for the Triwizard cup in The Goblet of Fire, Ron began to hold a grudge. This undoubtedly led to a bunch of awkward encounters between the two.
It may seem strange that Ron was so angry with Harry despite being one of his best friends, but Hermione explains it well in chapter 18 of The Goblet of Fire. “'Look,' said Hermione patiently, 'it’s always you who gets all the attention, you know it is. I know it’s not your fault. I know you don’t ask for it... but - well - you know, Ron’s got all those brothers to compete against at home, and you’re his best friend, and you’re really famous - he’s always shunted to one side whenever people see you, and he puts up with it, and he never mentions it, but I suppose this is just one time too many…'”
10 Seems Legit
I suppose Harry isn’t to blame for his willingness to trust strange giant men with huge beards. After all, he grew up without great parental influences. Plus, who could blame him for taking the first opportunity to leave the Dursleys, but it’s definitely odd that Harry had no problem with leaving with Hagrid.
Even if he desperately wanted to leave, you would think Harry would be a little nervous about going with a gigantic stranger who just broke down your door, told you “you’re a wizard,” and threatened your uncle with a pink umbrella. Instead, Harry saves most of his questions for later and chooses to leave the only family he’s ever known for a complete stranger.
You can’t really blame Harry. After all, Hagrid did give him a partially sat-on cake.
9 Send The Kids!
Hogwarts’ discipline system makes absolutely no sense. When Harry, Hermione, Draco, and Neville are caught out of bed at night, their punishment is to help Hagrid find and rescue an injured unicorn in the Forbidden Forest. This seems like an oddly harsh punishment for staying up past curfew. Most people would assume that a deduction of points from their respective houses would have been enough or even some kind of less dangerous manual task within the castle would have been punishment enough.
Instead, the four are sent into a deadly forest at night with a guide who is practically incapable of using magic. To make matters worse the group splits up once they actually get to the forest and Harry is attacked by Lord Voldemort before being saved by the centaur Firenze.
Albus Wulfric Percival Brian Dumbledore is the most powerful wizard to ever live. An argument could be made for Lord Voldemort, but, at least among characters who are alive in the books, Dumbledore claims the title. Despite being an incredibly wise and powerful wizard whose brilliant plans outwit the forces of darkness at every turn, Dumbledore did a terrible job of keeping his students safe.
During his tenure as headmaster of Hogwarts, Dumbledore exposed children to soul-sucking dementors, allowed a troll to enter the building, and let Voldemort sneak into the school not once, but twice.
He also was responsible for some truly terrible hiring decisions, including Gilderoy Lockhart, Quirinus Quirrell, and Dolores Umbridge and refused to intervene to protect students when the Chamber of Secrets opened.
7 Permission Slip
In Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban, all third-year students need a permission slip to take weekend trips to Hogsmeade. This permission slip needed to be signed by a legal guardian, but Harry’s uncle Vernon refused to sign it. This meant that while everyone else got to leave the castle, Harry had to stay inside. This is contrary to the attitude that Hogwarts had previously taken towards Harry’s family who was staunchly opposed to Harry attending Hogwarts in the first place.
When Harry finally does get permission to visit Hogsmeade, it doesn’t come from his uncle Vernon, but instead from Sirius Black who, aside from a handful of wizards, was still believed to be a crazed mass murderer. This begs the question, why did McGonagall care so much about Harry’s permission slip, but not bother to actually look at who signed it when she finally got it?
6 Harry Wins The Cup!
The importance of the House Cup fell drastically throughout the series. In the first book it is portrayed as the most important thing that happens at Hogwarts, but Harry, and therefore the audience, cared far less in subsequent years (the winner wasn’t even announced at the end of the third book).
Of the seven years Harry spent at Hogwarts, Gryffindor won the House Cup at least three times with the other years either going to an unknown house or being canceled altogether. It may seem like the results of the House Cup were bent in favor of Gryffindor (and Harry Potter in particular), but it shouldn’t be forgotten that, prior to his arrival, Slytherin had won the House Cup the previous six years in a row.
5 Wizard Lasik
Harry Potter lives in a world in which magic can regrow bones overnight and a polyjuice potion can completely change you into a different person, but the wizarding world has been completely unable to fix simple vision problems for centuries. Even us muggles have invented laser eye surgery by now.
It would appear that Harry isn’t the only wizard with poor eyesight. Overall, there are at least 19 other witches and wizards mentioned in the books who wear some kind of corrective lenses. There are also multiple spells that obscure people’s vision, but apparently not one to clear it.
Whether because the wizarding world is unable to find a solution to poor vision or because they don’t think it’s very important, glasses are here to stay at Hogwarts.
4 Clean It Up Filch!
While it could easily be assumed that Argus Filch has an overwhelming and very non-magical job, in actuality he has a great deal of magical (and invisible) help. In Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire, it is revealed that House Elves are responsible for cleaning much of the castle (as well as preparing most of its food).
Additionally, there is a lot of free labor available through Hogwarts’ students. In Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets, Ron is punished in detention by being forced to polishing trophies in the trophy room. It wouldn’t be far-fetched to assume that more students receive cleaning punishments throughout the year.
There are also some messes that Filch simply wouldn’t be able to clean without magical help. The portable swamp left by Fred and George Weasley had to be cleaned magically by Professor Flitwick.
3 No More Magic In Front Of Muggles!
The decision to separate the magical and muggle worlds was made centuries before the birth of Harry Potter. In The Tales of Beedle The Bard, it is explained that by the 17th-century muggles and wizards were practically at war. When the Ministry of Magic’s attempt to make peace with muggle leaders was rebuffed, wizarding leaders had to decide whether to conceal themselves or to declare all-out war against the muggles. After some debate, the International Statute of Wizarding Secrecy was born.
During his time at Hogwarts, Harry Potter broke The Decree for The Reasonable Restriction of Underage Sorcery three times. On the third occasion, he was expelled from Hogwarts. While all charges were later dismissed, it certainly seems odd that the Ministry of Magic would send a floating, talking letter to inform Harry of his expulsion, in front of the same muggle he supposedly cast a spell on.
As he’s depicted in the books, Ron may be the stupidest chess player to ever live. It seems obvious that Ron should have made either himself, Harry, or Hermione the king because it moves very little and is the safest piece on the board. Instead, he orders a bishop, a knight, and the queenside castle off the board for the three to take their places.
One possible explanation for this lapse in judgment is that Ron didn’t think he actually had to win the game of chess to advance. It’s possible that Ron simply thought that the three had to reach the other side of the board. If that was the case, the king would have been the worst piece to choose.
In the movie, the group didn’t get to pick their pieces. Instead, the three walk into the room to see already empty spots on the chessboard.
1 Voldemort to Gryffindor?
Almost everyone thought that Tom Riddle was destined for greatness and, according to the books, he had opportunities to infiltrate the Ministry of Magic, but turned them down.
In The Half-Blood Prince, Dumbledore explains that “nearly everybody expected spectacular things from Tom Riddle, prefect, Head Boy, winner of the Award for Special Services to the School. I know that several teachers, Professor Slughorn amongst them, suggested that he join the Ministry of Magic, offered to set up appointments, put him in touch with useful contacts. He refused all offers.”
By refusing a role at the Ministry, Tom Riddle was able to completely reinvent himself and shed his muggle lineage. When he became Lord Voldemort he was able to portray himself only as a wizard and make everyone forget that he came from a muggle family. That is a very Slytherin thing to do.
Do you have a favorite Harry Potter meme? Let us know in the comments!