In any franchise, heroes make mistakes, and Harry Potter is no different. Whether it's fighting Lord Voldemort and his loyal Death Eaters or in his regular life as a student at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, the Boy Who Lived doesn't always get things right.
Harry may have been able to bring peace to the wizarding community by defeating Voldemort during the final Battle of Hogwarts but, as to be expected for somebody so young, he made many errors along the way. With that in mind we now take a look at the 10 worst decisions he made over the course of the movies and the books - explaining why they were so bad as we go along.
10 Helping Hagrid With Norbert
You would think that Harry would watch himself in his first year at Hogwarts. Except he doesn’t, instead spending his time as a freshman getting into trouble and nearly dying at the hands of Lord Voldemort.
One of his many bad decisions comes when he decides to help Hagrid care for Norbert, the illegal dragon the groundskeeper had acquired from a unknown source. This lands him in hot water with Minerva McGonagall, who punishes him, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger and Draco Malfoy for being out after hours. It also very nearly costs Gryffindor the House Cup.
9 Flying To Hogwarts
Harry and Ron find themselves unable to get to Platform Nine and Three Quarters during the early stages of The Chamber of Secrets. But instead of sending an owl to inform the school's authorities, they decide to fly Arthur Weasley’s illegally enchanted car.
It’s a decision they certainly come to regret. They nearly die at the hands of Hogwarts’ Whomping Willow when they soar into it. They’re nearly expelled, but Albus Dumbledore gives them another chance. Also, Ron breaks his wand which leads to a year where, simply put, he isn’t much good in class.
8 Blowing Up Aunt Marge
Only his friendship with Minister of Magic Cornelius Fudge saves him from explusion. Furthermore, Harry escapes the Dursleys and takes solace in walking around by himself at night - at a time where a wanted killer is on the loose. Harry’s decision was foolhardy, regardless of the fact Marge deserved what she got.
7 Talking To Rita Skeeter
Given that Rita Skeeter has a reputation of being a torrid journalist, Harry should have ducked out of her interview during the The Goblet of Fire. Skeeter, furious at the way Harry refuses to give her the gossip she wants, lies about what he said, thus prompting Hogwarts' students to shun him.
Being underage, he would likely have been able to swerve media duties had he gone to Professor Dumbledore. But Harry doesn’t do this and, consequently, invites all the criticism on himself. That said, Skeeter should have known better than to exploit the teenager.
6 Sharing Triwizard Glory With Cedric
Diggory is slain by Peter Pettigrew upon arriving and Harry no doubt felt guilty and devastated in the following years due to the fact that his own selflessness led to such a tragedy.
5 Speaking Back To Dolores Umbridge
Like Aunt Marge, there's no denying that Dolores Umbridge is a repulsive woman. But Harry makes it a lot easier for the Ministry of Magic employee to be so villainous by insisting the wizarding community know the truth about Cedric Diggory’s death.
Had he insisted on the truth in private , he would have likely saved himself from a year of torture. He could have still formed Dumbledore’s Army and promoted the cause in private. While his stance is commendable it wasn’t his smartest idea. We wonder if the scars on his hands ever truly healed.
4 Going To The Ministry Of Magic
Like Cedric Diggory, Sirius Black is another one who dies as a result of Harry’s actions. He travels to the Ministry of Magic in Order of the Phoenix, having been shown a vision of Lord Voldemort torturing his godfather inside the Department of Mysteries.
But when he arrives there, he finds out he’s been tricked and Voldemort was merely using Harry’s inability to close his mind against him. Had he focused more on Occlumency, he would have prevented the Dark Lord’s plan from working. Yet it does and Sirius dies in the same night, falling to Bellatrix Lestrange.
3 Nearly Killing Draco Malfoy
Obviously, Harry should have known better. But he doesn’t and nearly kills Draco Malfoy when they face off in Moaning Myrtle’s bathroom, using the spell ‘Sectumsempra’ against his opponent. The spell makes Malfoy to lose a lot of blood and, in the books, sees Harry miss out on Gryffindor winning the Quidditch Cup.
2 Disarming Stan Shunpike
This only happens in the Deathly Hallows book. Here, Harry disarms Stan Shunpike during a battle above the skies. After leaving Private Drive for the final time, Harry and his loyalists find themselves under attack. Stan, acting under the Imperius Curse, attempts to curse them but Harry, remembering him from the Knight Bus, disarms him.
This gives away his location, allowing the Death Eaters to focus their efforts on him. It also brings the Dark Lord to the fray, only acting when he was sure where Harry was. This also costs Alastor Mad-Eye Moody his life.
1 Going To Godric’s Hollow
We understand why Harry wanted to travel to Godric’s Hollow. It was the place he lived with his parents and there was also some reason to think that Dumbledore may have wanted them to go there.
Except Harry and Hermione journey there with little evidence that’s the case. They fall into Voldemort's trap, where he murders Bathilda Bagshot and makes his snake Nagini act inside her body. They nearly die in the process but Harry’s wand also snaps here, robbing him of the protection it brings. Fortunately, the bad decision doesn’t cost them in the long run.