With HBO Max’s Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts soon upon long-awaiting fans, one can look back at the series as it has given a slew of amazing thrills and touching moments.
Whether these moments made one laugh or cry, they will be in the lexicon of pop-culture. While Lord of the Rings is still outstanding and Fantastic Beasts is subpar to the other competition, Harry Potter has triumphed throughout the years and delights audiences even after ending ten years ago.
Here is a comprehensive list of the best Harry Potter moments.
Disclaimer: The article reflects the author’s views.
Here are the 10 best moments of the ‘Harry Potter’ series
10) Harry catches the Snitch
Back in 2001, visual effects were still something Hollywood was playing around with and popular culture was mostly 90s music videos. However, looking back on Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, it gave audiences some scenes that have been genuinely classic.
One of them was the quidditch match scene where Gryffindor goes up against Slytherin. The only way a team can win the match officially is if their player catches the golden snitch.
Of course, Harry Potter is the one who catches it, but not with his hands. Instead, the boy wizard gobbles the gold object in his mouth and spits it back up in comedic fashion.
This was the scene that not only cemented Harry’s status in Hogwarts but made fans fall in love with the series altogether.
9) Voldemort in Quirrell’s head
Speaking of The Sorcerer's Stone, while the film may not be the greatest of the series, its climax is always worth noting. Harry goes down to the Mirror of Erised and faces the man responsible for putting a curse on his broom and releasing a troll in the school. Hoping to find Severus Snape, to Harry’s amazement, he runs into Professor Quirrell.
What makes it an even bigger surprise is that the Professor has Lord Voldemort growing on the back of his head like a malignant parasite.
Using someone as a host just makes it all the more absurd and unsettling.
8) The death of Dobby
One of the moments that really came as a surprise to viewers was the death of Dobby, the house elf. In The Deathly Hallows Part 1, Harry and his friends are captured at Malfoy Manor and a fight breaks out.
Dobby manages to help the gang escape, but not before Bellatrix Lestrange throws a knife at him to inflict a mortal wound.
Knowing that the elf has done everything to protect Harry, watching the latter cradle him in his arms is almost too heart-breaking to bear. What’s even more grievous is that Dobby was happy in his final moments, as he was surrounded by friends. Audiences have yet to get over this traumatic scene.
7) Friend becomes foe
Hogwarts is known for having trolls, animated trees and giant spiders, but evidently, they are also remembered for housing a were-wolf in the guise of Professor Lupin (David Thewlis).
It’s a full moon out and Remus Lupin has succumbed to his were-wolf phase after forgetting to take his pivotal potion.
Sirius Black (Gary Oldman) turns into his animagus dog form in an attempt to prevent the were-wolf from hurting Harry and his friends. However, Lupin eventually overpowers him. Frightening and edgy, this scene took Harry Potter down the rabbit-hole of classic horror.
6) Expecto Patronum
As previously stated, Hogwarts is known for its variety of ghouls, goblins and other monsters. However, dementors may be considered the worst of them all. After using Hermione’s time turner to go back in time to prevent Sirius' death, Harry encounters him and his past-self being stalked by a group of dementors as the swarm of monsters slowly sucks out their souls.
Harry believes that his father will come to the rescue, but after nearly losing Sirius, he takes matters into his own hands and casts the Patronus curse, sending the dementors away. It was a stunning look at Harry’s powers and a great sneak peek at what he was truly capable of.
5) Dumbledore’s demise
After coming back from a dark cave to collect a Horcrux, Dumbledore and Harry are greeted by a group of Death Eaters. While Harry hides, the intensity of the scene is built up to the point that Draco Malfoy (Tom Felton) intends to kill the mighty wizard, but ends up fumbling the shot.
However, in an earth-shattering reveal, Snape finishes Dumbledore off. A tragic ending that is only cemented through sheer scope and gravitas. Fans witnessed the death of one of Harry's closest advisers, which has been nothing short of traumatizing for him.
4) The death of Sirius
One moment that might be more emotionally disheartening is the death of Sirius Black himself. While a battle rages on between the Death Eaters and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry and Sirius fight side-by-side.
That all changes when Bellatrix Lestrange kills Black and he fades away beyond the veil with the other deceased wizards.
Without even uttering a word, the audience can feel the emotional weight of the scene as Harry realizes that he has lost the closest person to his family.
3) Snape’s memories
Snape (Alan Rickman) was portrayed as an emotionless, stern, no-nonsense professor who seemed to have a personal vendetta against Harry and, especially, his father.
In The Deathly Hallow Part 2, fans found out, via Pensieve, that he was friends with Harry’s mother Lily. In fact, he even tried to protect the love of his life and her child by asking Dumbledore to hide them from Voldemort.
After losing Lily, Snape reluctantly agrees to protect her son Harry and eventually kills Dumbledore after he is afflicted with a fatal curse that spreads to his hand. Disposing the headmaster thus gave Voldemort the confidence to trust Snape.
Driven by nothing but character development and remarkable writing, the scene perfectly illustrates Snape’s suffering and is the blueprint of how to write a character.
2) The Dark Lord shall rise again!
A dark entry on this list is the introduction of Lord Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, as the Dark Lord is manifested into a living, breathing man. Using his father's bones, Wormtails’ flesh and Harry’s blood, He-who-must-not-be-named was reborn.
As a result, Harry Potter fans were greeted with one of the most frightening villain introductions of all time.
1) Harry defeats Voldemort
A moment that has been enormously satisfying was when Harry defeated the Dark Lord once and for all. Seeing firsthand that the two wizards are evenly matched, it would be impossible to determine a winner just by their spells.
However, thanks to Neville killing off the snake, which was the last horcrux, Harry easily finished off Tom Riddle. After years of terror and torment, the Dark Lord evaporated into the air like boiling water. It’s a scene that gets fans every single time.