Severus Snape was one of the most complex characters in the Harry Potter series. He was a half-blood wizard serving as Potions Master, Defence Against the Dark Arts professor, and Headmaster of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry as well as a member of the Order of the Phoenix and a Death Eater. His double life played an extremely important role in both of the Wizarding Wars against Lord Voldemort.
But with Harry, Ron, and Hermione taking up most of the spotlight, not everyone is giving Severus the recognition he deserves. So, to shed some light on him and the entire series, potterheads turned to the Internet to cast Lumos on their beloved persona.
This fascination with Severus Snape isn't just a phase. In 2011, he became the (surprise) winner of a poll to find the public's favorite Harry Potter character. With 13,000 votes, Snape, who in the movies is played by Alan Rickman, took 20% of the 70,000 votes cast in the survey from the books' publisher, Bloomsbury. The organizers said he was the clear winner, beating Hermione Granger into second place.
Harry Potter, the hero of one of the most successful book series in history, took fourth place behind Sirius Black but ahead of his pal Ron Weasley, who came in at a measly number five.
Hermy, a moderator of one of the biggest online Harry Potter communities, r/harrypotter, said she has deeply mixed feelings about Snape. "I was the same age as Harry for most of the book releases, and as a kid, I thought he was evil incarnate!" she told Bored Panda. "Now, I think he is just a profoundly flawed man--and that's what makes him such a compelling character, if not a great person."
Overall, Hermy isn't a big fan of Snape. She thinks he had good moments, like honoring Dumbledore's wishes when Draco was tasked with killing Dumbledore and defecting from the Death Eaters, but for her, his flaws are very difficult to overlook. "What I often hear from other fans is that Snape is ultimately loyal to Lily Potter, but I think loyalty isn't the right word for what he actually does. I think he's obsessive, insecure, and unable to move past a high school crush," Hermy explained.
When Snape And Harry First Meet Eyes, Harry's Scar Hurts. But It's Actually Because Quirrel's Head Is Turned At That Exact Moment, And Lord Voldemort Is Living On The Back Of Quirrel's Head. In Fact, Snape Actually Notices That Harry's Scar Hurts And Turns To Look At Quirrell. He Later Confronts Quirrell Because He's Suspicious Of Him Working With Voldemort
"Lily was very clear about not being interested in him, yet he refused to acknowledge her feelings. When Harry arrives, he becomes a target for all that pent-up frustration despite never having wronged Snape (initially, at least!). At that time, it's been 11 years since Lily died, and probably 15-20 years since he was rejected. Any person we knew in real life who couldn't process a teenage heartbreak would not get the same indulgence that Snape gets from part of the Potterverse. But that certainly doesn't make him evil. Creepy, yes. Not evil. The matching patronus thing still weirds me out."
For her, Snape's bad qualities outweigh the good, but they don't negate the good. "I respect him, but I don't like him."
In Snape's Death Scene, You Can See A Gryffindor Scarf Hanging In The Background. If You've Read The Books, This May Be A Subtle Nod To Dumbledore's Line To Snape, "Sometimes I Think We Sort Too Soon"
In 2017, J.K. Rowling celebrated the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts by apologizing for killing off arguably the most divisive character in the series. The author obviously agrees that Severus is a polarizing character, saying, "Snape is all grey. You can't make him a saint: he was vindictive & bullying. You can't make him a devil: he died to save the wizarding world."
But what do you think about him? Tell us in the comments.
In The Harry Potter Movies (2001-2011), Snape’s Costume Was The Only One That Never Changed. According To Costume Designer, Jany Temine:"Because, It Was Perfect. When Something Is Perfect You Cannot Change It.” She Joined In Prisoner Of Azkaban And Changed Most Costumes Except Snape’s
This Harry Potter Detail Is Probably Well Known But Has Always Fascinated Me. An “Asphodel” Is A Flower From The Lily Family Meaning “My Regrets Follow You To The Grave”. And Wormwood Means “Absence”. So Snape Was Literally Saying “I Bitterly Regret Lily’s Death”
He Knew What Was Going To Happen For So Long
Snape Is Actually The One To Teach Harry The Spell Expelliarmus, Which Becomes His Signature
After Harry Screams At Snape For Killing Dumbledore And Bellatrix Knocks Him To The Ground, Snape Makes Sure The Others Go On Without Him And That Harry Is Safe Before He Leaves
In Order Of The Phoenix, Snape Teaches Harry Occlumency And Says A Bunch Of Mean (And Likely True) Stuff About His Dad. It Quickly Becomes Clear He's Provoking Harry In Order To Prove A Point About How He's Vulnerable To Voldemort
Harry Refuses To Call Snape “Professor.” In Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011), Harry Refers To Him As “Professor Snape” Once He Has Learned The Truth From The Pensieve
When Snape Kills Dumbledore, You Can See The Hesitation Very Clearly On His Face. He Only Obliges When Dumbledores Says "Please," And Even Then His Voice Shakes
In Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Pt. 2, Snape Is Still Helping The Order Of The Phoenix When He Re-Directs Mcgonagall’s Spells To The Death Eaters Behind Him
He's Just Altogether Real
After Mcgonagall Reveals That Ginny Weasley Has Been Taken To The Chamber Of Secrets, Snape Looks Genuinely Concerned
When Mcgonagall Steps In Front Of Harry To Duel Snape, He Lowers His Wand
In Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire (2005), When Harry Brings Back Cedric's Body, Snape Covers Him With His Cloak, Which Cedric's Father Then Removes To Look At His Son. This Is Why He Wasn't Wearing It When They Capture Barty Crouch Jr.
Note: this post originally had 38 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.