Severus Snape is such a hated and beloved character in the Harry Potter universe that simply mentioning him is a great way to enter a heated argument with best friends who also happen to be Potterheads. Some people dub Snape the greatest anti-hero ever written, obsessing over him enough to lovingly sigh, "Always!" at their significant others and daring anyone to bash him in their presence. Others look at that declaration as a creepy stalker promise, condemning Snape as a self-involved "friend zone" victim who really was an entitled man who refused to take no as an answer.
From any angle, Snape is full of problems (except Alan Rickman. Rickman is never a problem) and even J.K. Rowling admits that he's in so much gray area that you can't really call him a hero or a villain unless you call him both.
Luckily for modern readers of the books and watchers of the films, the Internet is a never-ending source of Snape memes where all of his flaws, faults. and nonsensical moments can be readily explored. Grab a Butterbeer and snuggled up in the common room while pondering these 25 Memes That Show That Snape Makes No Sense.
25 He Cries Magical Memory Tears
Every time a character in the Harry Potter universe has shed a memory to be revealed in the mystical depths of the Pensieve, those memories were pulled from the brain like a long strand of glowing fiber. So when Snape decided to send Harry to Dumbledore's Pensieve with his tears instead of a memory from his own mind, chaos erupted.
Why does Severus Snape get to have magical memory tears while no one else seems to have them?
Harry lifts the tears with his wand as one might with standard wizarding memories, so why not just extract them the traditional way?
We do get a bit more context in the book, but not much: "Something more than blood was leaking from Snape. Silvery blue, neither gas nor liquid, it gushed from his mouth and his ears and his eyes, and Harry knew what it was, but did not know what to do—" So it's not actually tears that Snape is leaking but some other strange memory-containing seepage that Harry is supposed to just know what to do with immediately. In the book, Hermione produces a flask out of thin air to catch them, but the precocious witch having a flask on her at all times makes much more sense than leaking memories down your face.
24 Which Side Is He Really On?
Argue that Snape was on the side of good all you want, but at the end of the day he gives his life for Voldemort. Voldemort orders Nagini, his snake, to take Severus out in order to become the master of the Elder Wand, but this makes zero sense, too. Although Nagini is one of Voldemort's horcruxes, he still isn't her master, and Tom Riddle should have had to take down Snape with his own hands (or wand, for that matter) in order to truly "best" the wand's master and have it work well for himself.
Fans can debate whether or not Snape truly resisted because while he does verbally object, the fact that he couldn't take out Nagini when Neville Longbottom could is ridiculous. Nothing against Neville, who showed some of the most growth in the entire series, but Snape has outlived most characters from the previous Wizarding War and managed to work dangerously as a double agent this long. He should have a much better chance at defending himself. We have to consider the idea that even if he didn't give up his life for Voldemort, he could have very well given up at this point.
From his obsession with the Dark arts since childhood to his pact to end Dumbledore to his year of running Hogwarts as an evil school, Snape's double agency often leaves us questioning where his true loyalty truly lay in the end.
23 The Victim Who Becomes A Bully
Why on Earth would Severus Snape want to teach at Hogwarts, the place where he was mercilessly bullied, and make that his home forever? Does he really have so few prospects or does he feel that guilty about selling out his childhood love to Voldemort?
Those of us who were bullied and actually manage to grow up usually enter one of two camps: those who want to put all of that behind them and move on, never to even think about school again, or those who decide to make the world a better place by serving where the bullies fester and grow to help stop it from happening in the first place, whether by intervening and saving the victims, helping the bullies overcome their own issues or both.
Snape proves that he makes no sense at all by tormenting the kids of the very school he attended as a bully himself.
None of his mean behavior is excusable. You bully the son of your old flame because he looks like her husband, even though you've never even heard the kid speak? Who even does that? And why bully poor Neville at all? And if he's not on the side of evil, why be so smitten with Draco Malfoy and his ilk? Much of this points to Snape's character being truly representative of his House but a lot of it just makes no logical sense.
22 He's Not A Teacher At Heart
If you've attended public school, you've got a sampling of various teacher types in your closet. You've probably got those who went above and beyond, who dedicated themselves to helping you learn and grow, supporting you along the way. You're likely to also have a few burnouts who gave meh lessons and were eager to flee the system, a few downright terrible teachers who still wanted to be there on some level, and a few who fulfilled that old adage that, while hurtful, still rings true on occasion, "Those who can, should. Those who can't, teach." This even lends itself double toward a teacher like Snape, who wanted a certain subject but was routinely denied the position.
While Snape overlaps with all of these types, deep down he's ultimately not a teacher at heart, making it very nonsensical for him to stay and teach at Hogwarts. Unlike Miss Honey here, whose dark secret was that the evil school principal was her aunt, Snape's secret is even worse. He's a double agent whose information led to the Potters' passing, an ex-Death Eater who still does dark deeds for Lord Voldemort. These secrets seem to permeate into all that he does, rendering him as unlike a teacher as possible.
21 Snape Isn't A Hero
Yes, Severus Snape lost saving the wizarding world from Lord Voldemort, but he also made it possible for Voldemort to use the Elder Wand to the best of its ability. A vindictive bully who took pleasure out of tormenting his students, whether through humiliation or even abuse of power that led to poor grades, Snape did not possess a heroic heart.
His own creator admits it, saying that while he is a gift of a character who possesses a large amount of courage, he is also spiteful.
He's so extreme in his hateful attitude toward what seems like anyone not in the Slytherin House that he breaks boundaries that should be in place between students and teachers, rendering himself far worse than his own bullies. Although Sirius Black and James Potter were not kind to Snape in the least, they were on the same level as the young wizard, which is more than we can say about his taking out frustration on his own students.
It also doesn't make any sense that Dumbledore would allow such vicious behavior in his school. It's like allowing detention in the Forbidden Forest while it's supposed to be considered out of bounds to the students, or hiring Sybill Trelawney while fully knowing she was a hack aside from one promising prophecy: everything's made up and only the House points matter.
20 He Has An Over-Inflated Ego
For a social outcast, Severus Snape has a vastly inflated ego. He seems to think he is superior to everyone around him, especially his students, and isn't afraid to show it. Snape's insults are just about as legendary as the ones that James Potter and Sirius Black threw at him, making it appear to be more of an even playing field despite our knowledge that the two "ruled the school" and gave him, among others, a difficult time.
The thing is, if Snape is so amazing and he can truly bottle fame and brew glory so well, why would he work in a job that seems to make him so miserable?
The truth, of course, is that just like any person who abuses their power, he thinks he is actually too good for his job and make everyone else suffer for it. In this case, Snape obviously wants to be the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher instead of the Potions Master, but shouldn't both be beneath him if he truly believes himself to be as impressive as he seems to convey? Perhaps he wants to be the headmaster of Hogwarts eventually, which we all know does tragically happen.
19 Movie Snape Is More Sympathetic Than He Should Be*
Many book fans are irritated over the fact that, in the movies, not only does James Potter rarely appear to be a likable character, especially since he's not depicted giving his life to save his wife and son as he did in the novels, but Severus Snape also doesn't use the wizarding slurs that he employs in the novel to insult his best friend, Lily Evans.
Fans who read the books feel much more conflicted about the Potions Master, who proved to be even crueler and more of a stalker than he did in the films.
With this in mind, it also makes zero sense for Harry to name his child after Snape. Even if the professor helped him in the end, this is like excusing Darth Vader for destroying all of the younglings in the Jedi training program. Snape tormented people literally and figuratively, committed crimes, and was cruel to Harry's mother to the point of behaving like an unwanted suitor who whined about being rejected when really the object of his affection simply couldn't stand the fact that he was a dark wizard who wanted to be a Death Eater.
18 Snape Didn't Make The Ultimate Sacrifice For Lily; James Did
Yes, James Potter was a smart aleck who was boastful, snide, and worked way too hard to impress the girls at Hogwarts. He was a bully who eventually learned not to be but it made him appear to be a pretty unsympathetic character for the most part. There's a reason why Snape has so many more fans (and inspires more tattoos) than Prongs.
That said, it was James and not Snape who gave his life for Lily, proving that he loved her best. In fact, it was Snape's own fault that Voldemort learned of the prophecy and sought out the Potters to begin with. While some argue that it was his love for Lily that led him to find her too little, too late, and that Snape would have battled Voldemort and would have lost his life protecting her, we will never know. He's never been able to stand up to Voldemort on any other occasion, after all, and James was the one who actually did it and lost his life for it.
When we hear about Lily giving her life to save Harry and the magic of that love protecting him, many also think it doesn't make sense that James, who sacrificed himself for them both, didn't become a Horcrux himself as he perished saving those he loved, too.
17 Dumbledore Excuses Everything He Does
"Dumbledore trust Snape, so we do, too!" just about everybody always says before Snape eliminated his Headmaster predecessor. Why is it that Dumbledore implicitly trusts Snape after everything he's done? Maybe because he feels a heavy amount of guilt for causing his ex best friend's death, which Dumbledore holds over his head as a promise to do his bidding as a double agent.
Why else would Dumbledore, someone who is supposed to be so kind and helpful, allow bullying of epic proportions by one of his own teachers?
We have seen Dumbledore chastise people for less, yet we've also seen him make some cruel and seemingly careless decisions like forcing Harry to live with his terrible relatives who hate him when there had to be other, kinder spells he could have employed to protect the young wizard.
Perhaps Albus just does what Albus wants, with no regards to the consequences, and one of those things he wants, as this meme depicts, is Snape. Otherwise it makes no sense to have a teacher like this on your staff. Why? He could want Snape strictly as a double agent in his pocket or, according to this meme, for something of a more personal nature.
16 He Takes Points Away For Dumb Reasons
The punishments that Severus Snape doles out seem not only petty and pointless, but well beneath his time as a busy teacher. "Ten points from Gryffindor!" he'll snarl after hearing Draco bully Harry and Harry shoot something back.
While this is likely just another form of revenge the teacher is extracting from Harry's messy DNA blend that's the perfect combination of Severus's sources of both infatuation and contempt, it seems like he would be way too busy to stop what he's doing to torment Harry or any other student, which makes us believe that he has to just be doing it for the fun of it.
Even if he weren't the Benedict Arnold of the Order of the Phoenix, Snape is a Hogwarts teacher, which means he has his hands full managing class loads, homework, keeping his potions full, grading, and everything else that comes with the role. He is also Head of Slytherin House, a job that should also keep him on his toes. If we think some shenanigans went down in the Gryffindor House, it can't hold a candle to what the most cunning and ambitious young wizards are up to.
Hence it makes no sense for Snape to be issuing stupid minuscule punishments for minor infractions.
15 His Face Shows One Emotion
Some joke that Keanu Reeves could have played a decent Severus Snape, given the emotional range displayed on the man's face.
While Reeves and Rickman are both excellent and sometimes underrated actors, it's true that Snape himself seems to have the same expression on his face at all times despite the sneer in his voice, the sorrow over Harry's eyes, and the conflict he has to experience every day of his life. It's almost as if he were the Hogwarts android instead of the school's Potions Master.
It would make much more sense to see the fire in Snape's face when he is upset, especially in scenes like the one where Harry witnesses his most terrible memory of Harry's father bullying him.
While there is a description of some rage in the book, Rickman's movie-Snape almost always speaks softly with a stoic face, making us wonder if the professor has any feelings at all. This discrepancy doesn't stop with Snape, of course; several of the characters in the films don't match their book counterparts, particularly Dumbledore, whose scream, "Did you put your name in the Goblet of Fire?" elicited boos and hisses from just about every reader of the books.
14 He didn't put Lily first when he had the chance
Many Snape fans make him out to be this tragic lovesick hero whose unrequited feelings for Lily Evans were just another example of the unfairness of life. Upon witnessing the cruelty of James Potter, some fans are even out for Lily's blood, blaming her for rejecting Severus and choosing the snide James instead. These fans should read the text a little more closely, of course, since it's clear that Lily told Severus that she couldn't pretend for him anymore, that his darkness was getting, worse and that she wanted nothing to do that that.
If Snape truly wanted Lily, he may have had a chance with her if he'd chosen her above the dark arts and joining the Death Eaters, which he obviously wasn't keen to do. Of course Lily will love whomever she loves, but she definitely would have remained his friend had he not sought the dark side, and who knows what would have happened had he done that instead of seeking fame and glory or whatever it was he wanted as a member of Voldemort's crew?
Looking at Snape, Potter, and Evans as teens, Snape really should have married Lily had she loved him back, and might have even had a shot if he hadn't followed the darkness he prized over his friend.
13 He Defended Harry And Ron That One Time
Severus Snape may feel an obligation to keep Harry alive because of his mother's eyeballs that stare back at him accusingly every single day, but he sure doesn't go out of his way to bail Harry and Ron out of any trouble they find themselves in if it's not a deathly situation.
On the contrary, he takes great pleasure in not only seeing the boys in hot water but sending them there himself, from deducting points or issuing detention to even refusing to give Harry Occlumency lessons like a grown man.
So why on Earth would he suggest the boy were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time, ever? After every single moment that Snape appeared to live for the discomfort, humiliation and suffering of The Boy Who Lived and his buddies, why would he decide to suddenly throw them a bone in a moment when they absolutely could have been in deep trouble?
Even then, of course, he had to throw in a caveat, adding that he didn't see Harry at dinner when he was helping Lockhart sign his "fan mail," but if he wasn't going to just give Harry this benefit of the doubt, then why even bother interjecting? It doesn't make sense on two levels.
12 Why Is His Hair So Greasy Anyway?
He's a greasy-haired git, we get it. Everyone comments on it, from Harry himself to the Mauraders in their map, but why is Snape's hair so greasy? He is the Potions Master! He should be able to whip up something to keep his hair from ever getting greasy, let alone be adult enough to manage a shampoo now and then.
Some say it's part of his dark nature, but that's no excuse; just look at Lucius Malfoy's lustrous locks for evidence of that.
Others claim it's because he's still pining for Lily Potter, but that's a long time to avoid a hair wash. Maybe it's just Snape's natural complexion but again, if you're going to bottle fame and glory, why not a little bit of shampoo, too?
Snape is probably not trying to avoid products that are cruel to animals, either, given how many potions call for animal ingredients, but even if he were (or trying to be an environmentalist, for that matter), how about some garden variety baking soda? It never really makes sense for any witch or wizard to have anything from acne to greasy hair to anything else that they can't just magic away, so it stands to reason that Snape just prefers his hair that way.
11 He just doubles down on the bad attitude
It's one thing to just not care about what people think of you and let your freak flag fly, but it's another to seem especially bitter and cruel over the fact that nobody likes you when you act like a jerk all of the time.
One of Snape's worst faults is his inability to just grow up and get his life together. Those who defend his heroics in the Second Wizarding War seem to miss this fatal flaw. Snape had decades to become something more than a sneering, insult-spewing man who is bitter about being rejected in work and love. How hard was it for him to choose evil over good when someone like Remus Lupin, a bona fide werewolf and another man given multiple chances by Dumbledore, was able to do it?
Remus, of course, had friends, but Severus probably could have had some, too, had he not been so contemptuous of everyone, including his beloved Lily Evans.
Snape has to know that there are people who would be his friends if he could ease up on following the darkness and calling people slurs.
It's interesting how the term "mudblood" is meant to be reminiscent of a hateful racist term that most people would never say, yet those who defend Snape (and Malfoy) seem to forgive that quite easily.
10 He Knew Who Padfoot Was
The scene in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban where Snape demands to see what is on Harry's "spare bit of parchment" only to be insulted by people called Padfoot, Prongs, Moony, and Wormtail should have been obvious to Snape, yet he acted like he had no idea what the enchanted paper was.
Not only did Snape know who Padfoot was, after being bullied by the man and his group, but he also undoubtedly knew Wormtail and likely Moony and Prongs as well.
When Harry told Snape that "He has Padfoot in the place where it is hidden" in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Snape says he has no idea what he's talking about yet follows through because he knows exactly who that is. One could argue that's because they now work together at the Order, but between Sirius's deadly prank on him, the boys being so loud and obnoxious with their nicknames, he likely knew it sooner.
Voldemort himself referred to Peter as Wormtail so Severus had to know that was him. So why play stupid about the Maurader's Map? This seems like a great time to give Harry trouble about the company he keeps, his father and everything else Severus loves to bully him over, so why pretend he has no idea who these names refer to?
9 He Is The Unfairest Teacher Ever
We've all had unfair teachers in our lives, and the best teachers make sure we know that life isn't fair. Many of those, however, will go on to emulate qualities that help make it fairer, working toward equality and demonstrating kindness to their students. Others, however, seem to relish the opportunity to demonstrate just how unfair the world can be. Snape falls into this latter category, which doesn't make sense since he A) is just as much a victim of this fact as anyone else and B) Dumbledore seems to otherwise prefer pretty fair teachers.
As we established earlier, Snape is constantly punishing people of the wrong houses for doing things that people in his own house does, but he goes even further than that to mess with his own students' grades. He will smugly give students like Harry zero points on a project for stupid reasons, act like he didn't witness sabotage occurring against students he doesn't like, and blatantly encourage nepotism in his class - giving his old Death Eater buddy's kid special advantages while being hard on his rival's son.
If Dumbledore were truly a fair headmaster, he wouldn't let Snape teach either of these students given his deep biases.
8 He "loves" Lily, but not Harry
Snapes version of "always" love may seem deep and sincere on the surface. Then we look a little closer. Protecting Lily's son doesn't mean that much when he also bullies him on a daily basis.
Rowling says that had Snape not loved Lily so much he would have had zero interest in Potter, but that's not true; since James had been a tormentor of Snape, he surely would have still bullied the child, given his petty proclivities. Only he would have let Potter get taken out by magic instead of saving him.
Snape didn't, however, "always" love Lily, as Rowling and so many have suggested.
Loving someone means putting their desires and needs before your own, not selling them out to the darkest wizard of all time in a jealous rage, only to cling to their lifeless husk afterward while their sobbing orphan child stares at you.
That's right, Severus Snape helped Harry Potter become an orphan. You don't do that to the woman you love's child, no matter whom she had it with, and you certainly don't bully him day in and day out. You act in a way that would make her proud of you, which everyone but Snape seems to understand.
7 Snape Is A Dark Wizard Through And Through
Argue that there is good in Severus Snape all you want, but he's not some sweet Harry Potter version of Edward Scissorhands who only appears a little dark and deadly on the outside. We are talking about a serious Death Eater, one who is the most trusted and loyal servant of the Dark Lord. This means he's done some heinous acts. He has a Dark Mark. He sought the Dark Arts throughout his childhood and dreamed of serving Voldemort, which ultimately pushed Lily away from him even though she begged him not to do it. He's dark to his core, which makes his double agent status ridiculous.
As julvett's art demonstrates in this meme, Snape would have still been a dark wizard had he married Lily Evans, which would have made them both miserable.
He still would have wanted to be a dark wizard, to serve Voldemort and follow his own desires rather than build the family that Lily desired.
We get that it's easy to romanticize this the same way that people romanticize The Phantom of the Opera, but like the phantom, Snape is still a doer of dark deeds who's obsessed with a pretty face at the end of the day.
6 He's Obsessed With Potions
Snape may whine about not getting the Defense Against the Dark Arts gig every single year, but for someone who wants it so badly, he can't help but extol his own potions prowess.
If he loves the Dark Arts so badly, why is he so obsessed with Potions in the first place?
It's almost as if he's sabotaging his own career, determined to prove his worth with a cauldron and then wondering why he's still stuck in the position years later.
It's a hard lesson to learn, Severus; we get it. As soon as you're competent at anything, whether it's being Scout Master or PTA chair, everyone wants you to keep doing it because they don't want to do it. They will say you're great at it and that they love how you do it, but ultimately they just want something for nothing and are eager to use your hard work to their advantage.
In this case, you've proven yourself an exemplary Potions Master (yet not a good teacher, which also doesn't make any sense) so why would they move you to another subject? This one is on you, Snape. Had you just blown up a student once or twice you probably wouldn't be stuck in this job anymore.
5 Lily Never "Friendzoned" Snape
For starters, there's no such thing as a "friend zone," so stop saying it. Be a friend or be honest about your non-friend intentions. It's that simple.
Not only did Lily defend Snape against James Potter's bullying, but she proved to be a loyal friend to him even when she wanted to end their friendship as he sank deeper into the world of the Dark Arts. Finally she had to call it quits when he followed the path of evil.
Snape didn't even tell Lily how he felt about her before she was eliminated, so how could she even know that his intentions were of a romantic nature? Those who make this assumption may simply not have friends of the opposite gender, which would be unfortunate and sad since it seems to render them unable to understand the majority of people who do.
Lily may have been Snape's only friend, so naturally that's how she saw him. Given that so many relationships begin there and blossom into more, had Snape revealed his feelings to her (and stopped pursing the Dark Arts) they may have experienced a different kind of relationship together, but it's absolutely ridiculous to blame Lily for the fact that it never happened.
4 His Backstory Isn't Nearly As Tragic As People Say
Snape is frequently romanticized as a tragic hero whom many people pity, but his tale isn't nearly as tragic as some say, as this Dorkly meme illustrates. In fact, he could pretty much be the poster boy for today's "incels," depending on how you interpret his story, which bridges into the dangerous and repugnant territory of blaming others for your own actions.
He didn't get the girl he wanted after being emotionally abusive toward her, so he pursued a dark path that resulted in her end. Then he made up for selling her out to his evil overlord by working as a thankless teacher and double agent for the Order of the Phoenix.
We have seen many wizards who have had it much worse than Snape.
Sirius paid for his sins many times over with 12 years in Azkaban, then lost his life just two years later, and Remus's monthly transformations following a particularly unjust bite left him aged and in great pain, not to mention discriminated against, yet he managed to avoid joining Voldemort. There are many other characters in the books that not only have few friends but also suffer great tragedy and still don't go dark. Harry Potter himself is the best example of all.
3 Why Does Voldemort Trust A Snape, A Half-Blood?
Lord Voldemort despising half-blood wizards despite being one is reminiscent of a many a bigoted dictator. It's senseless and so is the fact that his most trusted servant, Severus Snape, is also a half-blood. In fact, Snape is the Half-Blood Prince, to be exact.
It's like turkeys and deer voting for a hunter as their representative, perhaps because he looks like the kind of guy with whom you could have a beer with at the bar. It's entirely against their own best interests to support only pure-blooded wizards, yet that is the backbone of their entire plan.
It's completely senseless that Voldemort and his BFF are both half-bloods who hate other half-bloods--almost as senseless as being a double agent for two decades and teaching potions classes instead of doing covert missions for your missing leader in action.
How exactly did Snape pull that one off? Lucius obviously helped Voldemort behind the scenes while he was MIA, but there was Snape, teaching children the arts of potions making instead of sneaking Horcruxes into cauldrons and other dark deeds.
2 He Calls Lily A Mudblood
Snape does some pretty dark deeds in his time but calling his own best friend, perhaps his only friend and defender, a mudblood in front of lots of people while she was only trying to help him makes no sense. That said, it's senseless in the same way other teens saying stupid remarks out of sheer embarrassment are also senseless. Still, it's a pretty heinous thing to say, even out of humiliation, particularly when the term could have referred to Snape himself as well.
Not only does this meme illustrate that Karen Gillan should play Lily Potter if fans ever get the Marauder years movie they are all dying for, but it also demonstrates the sheer stupidity of calling your friend such a terrible term when she is only trying to help you. Out of her own embarrassment and anger, Lily immediately joins in to call Snape Snivellus and insults his clothing and hygiene to boot.
It doesn't seem very indicative of Lily's trademark kind behavior, but she, too, was a teen, and this memory doesn't reflect kindly on any of its participants-- even the mellow Remus Lupin, who didn't join in but failed to speak up for Snape, too.
1 His Whole Life Is Based On A Lie
"His mother's eyes." All of Snape's protection, all of the things he did for Harry were all supposed to stem from the fact that Harry had his mother's eyes.
In the film, Harry clearly does not have Lily Potter's eyes, prompting us all to squeal, "Everything we know is a lie!"
Book fans know that neither Harry nor his mother have green eyes in the films as they in the books. Instead, Harry has Daniel Radcliffe's trademark baby blues while his mother has warm brown eyes. While the two didn't necessarily have to have green eyes, filmmakers should have known how important this was and at least have the actor most comfortable with contact lenses wear them so they could match.
What this means is that Harry ultimately does not look like Lily in the least but is 100% James. While that helps to explain the petty bullying that most adults would still manage to avoid carrying out on a child, it does not give credence to the idea that Snape protects Harry because he looks like his mother, let alone that he wants to look into his eyes at the end; in fact, that just makes it weird. Way to creep us all out even while you perish, Snape.
What else doesn't make sense about Snape from Harry Potter? Let us know in the comments!