In the Harry Potter books, Azkaban embodies an exaggerated image of a cruel and isolated place, shrouded in darkness and mystery. Rowling also adds a powerful creative flair with the introduction of Dementors - soulless, evil beings who serve as Azkaban's guards and feed on the prisoner's soul.
However, while it does bring that "cool factor," many fans will agree that Azkaban is not the most realistically conceptualized prison. Here are some of the biggest logical inconsistencies and unanswered questions surrounding this horrid place.
10 Isn't Azkaban a too severe punishment for every crime in the wizarding world?
But there seems to be no middle ground for people who have only committed minor crimes. The conditions are nothing an ordinary person could survive for long, and having such a dire prison serve as the"official" criminal institution for everyone in the wizarding world is far from realistic.
9 What do the prisoners of Azkaban eat?
In fact, in chapter 5 of The Prisoner of Azkaban book, it's stated that Dementors brought food to Sirius Black. But no explanation was given on how the food was procured and prepared, and the sole idea of Dementors (otherworldly evil beings who feed on humans and obey none) would obey their prey (the Ministry) and cater to Azkaban inmates seems a bit ridiculous.
8 Do underage wizards go to Azkaban?
In the books, we see Harry afraid of being sent to Azkaban for using underage wizardry on multiple occasions, yet this never happened. But surely, an underage mass murderer like Tom Riddle should be punished with something greater than expulsion? We'll never know.
7 Why didn't the Dementors leave Azkaban sooner?
At first, it was logical to assume that Dementors were unable to leave Azkaban island until the Ministry of Magic discovered them there. The sole reason why the Ministry decided to employ them as guards to the Azkaban prison was in fear of their reprisal. Does this mean that if the Ministry would have destroyed Azkaban, the Dementors would have easily ventured out into the world and retaliate? If so, why the heck didn't the Dementors leave sooner?
6 Why would the ministry trust Dementors to guard Azkaban prison?
Sure, it's mentioned in the book that wizards have a way of communicating with the Dementors. However, we really can't do much to stop them from going out in search of the "American Dream," and Dementors don't exactly seem like the trustworthy type.
5 Can house-elves be imprisoned in Azkaban?
If they indeed can be imprisoned in Azkaban, they'd be able to escape with relative ease, as the only thing that keeps prisoners in Azkaban are the Dementors and their lack of wand ...so that would not make any sense.
4 Powerful wizards can't be imprisoned in Azkaban
However, these two are not the only exceptions to the rule. Any skilled animagus would also have no problem escaping. Anyone come to mind? Yeah, Sirius Black. In the third book, Sirius explains to Harry how he escaped by turning into his animagus form and slipping through the prison bars. And considering the most powerful wizards can also be the most dangerous, Azkaban's not a very good prison, then, is it?
3 How can every wizarding criminal fit in Azkaban?
It seems a bit cramped, doesn't it? Provided, we were never given a size description of this place, aside from the book covers which depicted a minuscule Azkaban. Not to mention how impractical it is as a location.
2 Why did Sirius Black wait 12 years to escape Azkaban?
Why, then, didn't he use his animagus form earlier to get out of this wretched place and live a normal life? The fact that it was Scabber's (Peter Pettigrew's) picture in the newspaper that finally snapped him out is plain ridiculous, to say the least. The best explanation? He needed to wait 12 years so he could lose enough weight to fit through those prison bars!
1 Why didn't the Ministry drive away the Dementors from Azkaban Sooner?
It took the Second Wizarding War and countless deaths for the Ministry of Magic to finally realize that Dementors may not be the best choice of a prison guard and that it's time to eradicate them. Really? Why, then, didn't they muster up the courage to do that sooner?