The Harry Potter Fandom, is a massive one, that knows no boundaries. People from all over the world and of varying ages love this series, and will defend it like their lives depend on it. I for one, am one of those fans. I find when people call Harry Potter childish, that they have never cracked open any of the books, and have never really paid attention to the underlying themes of the story. But that is another rant for another day. I am here to write about Severus Snape. One of fictions most loved and also hated characters of all time. Before you head to the comments section to tell me how wrong I am for defending a bully, I would ask that you read my entry till the end, and then comment. Also please NOTE: If you haven’t read the books, you may not want to continue on. If you have only seen the movies, you will NOT be able to understand Snape as a character. The books contain a lot more details.
You are right, Snape, is a bully. Through out the series he holds a grudge like a petulant child. He not only bullies Harry because of that bitter grudge that he holds for the child’s deceased father, but he treats every student like trash.
He is arrogant, condescending, and mean spirited. Really he’s all the things he projects on to Harry. The thing is, I am defending Snape as a fictional character. I defend Snape, and how J.K. Rowling chose to write him. He’s severely complex, and as I’ve grown up, he has taken hold as one of my favorite characters of all time. While he has all of the shit qualities you wouldn’t want in an enemy let alone a friend, he was the ONLY one that was able to truly fool Voldemort until his very last breath. The entire series really hangs on the fact that Snape was able to play his role of death eater so convincingly well. When someone gets angry that people defend Snape, they usually bring up the bullying, and they bring up the fact that it was he who made Remus Lupin’s life a little bit more miserable by letting out his secret that Lupin was a werewolf. But it was ALSO Snape, on the night they moved Harry in the last book, that threw a curse at A death eater’s wand arm, a wand arm aiming a curse at Lupin. Sadly, it missed the death eater and hit George’s ear instead, but still he tried to Save Lupin.
I write this as an example because it shows the complexities of the character. I love how deeply and unapologetically flawed he was written. Rowling knew what she was doing. That is where my defense truly lives. I defend the way Rowling chose to make Snape, I defend her choice in having Harry name his child after Snape, I defend every single detail she wrote about this character. When the deathly hallows was released, I was having a crisis about whether or not I believed Snape to be a bad guy or not, and that is where the brilliance truly lies. She created this image of Snape: the bully, the asshole, the coward, and then created the other side where he was brave, selfless, and a fighter. Tearing the fandom straight down the middle.
You know if he were someone I had to deal with as a student, yea, I would hate his guts. As a reader and a writer, I think he’s brilliant. I will always defend Snape. I understand that character, and gain an even better understanding each time I decide to read through the entire series again.
So you may not agree with me, but I am never apologizing for my views. J.K. Rowling is my absolute favorite writer. She’s created some of the greatest fictional characters I have ever seen, and Snape is absolutely on that list of characters.