From the time we meet him in his cupboard under the stairs to the epic standoff with Lord Voldemort, Harry Potter experiences serious growth and proves he is a true Gryffindor. From finding out he is a wizard and getting his magic wand to fighting for his friends and family, Harry Potter is full of nerve, chivalry and courage. In continuing to celebrate Harry during his birthday month, we have selected ten of our favorite Harry Potter character moments throughout the series.
- The arrival of the Hogwarts letter/Hagrid’s entrance
After finding a letter addressed to Mr. H. Potter in The Cupboard Under the Stairs, the constant presence of the owls, and letters filling the room, finally Hagrid shows up at the hut and makes the big reveal. “You’re a wizard, Harry.” Let the life-changing events begin.
- Defeating Professor Quirrell
At a young age, Harry is determined to do what’s right. He goes after the person trying to swipe the sorcerer’s stone. He comes face-to-face with Voldemort and still refuses to hand over the stone. His determination and the fact that Quirrell cannot bear to touch him helps save Harry and the stone.
- Defeating Tom Riddle
Even after being bitten by the basilisk, Harry still knows the memory of Lord Voldemort must be defeated. He drives the fang into diary effectively destroying Tom Riddle and the diary. He may not have known it at the time, but Harry destroyed the first horcrux and took a step toward defeating Lord Voldemort.
- Freeing Dobby
Let’s be honest, we all love Dobby. Sure, in the beginning, his tactics were questionable, but his intentions were honorable. When Harry gives Lucius Malfoy Tom Riddle’s diary with a sock in it, he tricks the elder Malfoy into freeing his house elf. “Master has presented Dobby with clothes. Dobby is free.”
- Letting Peter Pettigrew go
Even after discovering that Sirius Black, his godfather, was framed and that Peter Pettigrew, a.k.a. Ron’s rat Scabbers, actually betrayed his parents to Voldemort, Harry did not allow Sirius or Remus to kill Peter. He takes the high road and wants to return Pettigrew to Hogwarts and the dementors. This choice comes back to help Harry later in his escape of Malfoy Manor.
- Expecto Patronum
It wasn’t James Potter who saved them from the dementors. In a powerful moment of growth, Harry whips out his wand and yells “EXPECTO PATRONUM!” saving himself and Sirius from the dementors’ kisses. The powerful charm blasts away dozens of dementors.
- Family, at last
Sirius offers Harry a home outside of Hogwarts, once things settle down. He finally has a family, someone to love, and someone to love him and care for him. It is a heartwarming moment knowing that there is something positive in Harry’s life.
- The graveyard scene
After being dealt a devastating blow discovering that the Triwizard Cup is a portkey and that Cedric is now dead, Harry is forced to face off with Voldemort. The moment their spells meet Priori Incantatem takes effect. Voldemort’s wand history was revealed. Harry saw Cedric, the caretaker and his parents. In a brief moment, Harry has time to grab Cedric’s body and the portkey before returning to Hogwarts and announcing that Voldemort is back.
- The Department of Ministries
The battle at the Department of Ministries is crucial to Harry’s life. He and his friends battle Death Eaters on their own before being backed up by the Order of the Phoenix. In an absolutely heart-wrenching scene, Harry watches Sirius die. Blinded by anger and despair, he chases down Bellatrix and curses her. Voldemort shows up and so does Dumbledore. An intense battle ensues. Voldemort then tries to inhabit Harry’s mind and can’t because Harry is too full of love and goodness.
- The Epic Battle
While Voldemort’s last stand in the movie is powerful, the final battle in the book is much more dramatic and memorable. After sacrificing himself in the Forbidden Forest, Harry pretends to be dead as the Death Eaters return to Hogwarts. The battle of good versus evil resumes and Harry slips away using his invisibility cloak, continuing to throw curses at unsuspecting Death Eaters. Enter the Great Hall where Molly Weasley kills Bellatrix Lestrange. Time stops as Voldemort turns on Molly. Harry casts a shield charm to protect her and shocks the world by revealing that he is alive. Harry states that there are no more horcruxes and it is just the two of them. Neither can live while the other survives. It all comes down to this. They both cast their spells at the same time. Harry to disarm, Voldemort to kill. However, the elder wand refuses to harm Harry, its true master, and the killing curse rebounds on Voldemort. Harry Potter, the boy who lived, has defeated Voldemort once and for all.
What are your favorite Harry Potter character moments? Grab your magic wand and prepare for the battle of a lifetime with Harry, Ron and Hermione in this powerful series. Happy Birthday, Harry Potter!