While Harry Potter is the hero of the wizarding world, preventing Lord Voldemort from enforcing brutal law on the community, the Boy Who Lived’s triumph wouldn’t have been possible without Hermione Granger. Like the Chosen One, she was sorted into Gryffindor during the events of the Sorcerer’s Stone, and, though their relationship gets off to a turbulent start, they end up striking up a strong friendship over the years. Hermione becomes a vital ally for Harry in his battle against the Dark Lord, using her remarkable intelligence to steer them out of many tricky situations.
Though she may be one of the brightest of her class, she’s still human, and not all of her decision-making was on point throughout the series. In fact, in these 10 instances, we’d say she made some questionable-at-best decisions.
10 Showing Off In Front Of The Boys
When you’re starting somewhere new, it’s not ideal to act arrogant or cocky. This goes for whether you’re starting school, a new job, or anything else. But, that doesn’t stop Hermione from immediately showing off when she meets Harry and Ron Weasley for the first time, with the muggle-born wasting no opportunity to show she’s already far ahead of the pair when it comes to learning magic.
This immediately sees Harry and Ron take a disliking to her. Nobody likes a know-it-all, so they try their best to stay out of her way. Things only change when the duo stops a Mountain Troll from bludgeoning her to death, something that brings people closer together, apparently…
9 Leaving The Cloak Behind
It’s not shown in the Sorcerer’s Stone movie, but, in the books, Hermione and Harry help move Norbert (Norberta) the dragon away from Hagrid’s, who reluctantly parts ways with his difficult pet. The two Gryffindor pupils transport the creature to the top of the Astronomy Tower, with Charlie Weasley then whisking it away to Romania.
But, before leaving, Hermione didn’t consider the Invisibility Cloak a priority. She foolishly leaves in atop of the tower and pays for this, with Argus Filch then catching them out of bed after hours. They’re given detention and Harry, rightly, feels frustrated that his friend didn’t remember their most-important item.
8 Fangirling Over Gilderoy Lockhart
Just about everybody has a childhood crush, and Hermione is no different, fangirling over Gilderoy Lockhart when he moves to Hogwarts as Defence Against the Dark Arts teachers during the events of the Chamber of Secrets.
The problem with this, however, is that it’s clear that Lockhart’s a giant fraud. He isn’t the brave and courageous wizard he claims to be, later revealing that he merely took credit for the work of others before wiping their memories to cover his tracks. Lockhart shows himself to be woeful when it comes to magic on various occasions, but, Hermione, despite being the smartest student under his charge, chooses to look past this; she defends him staunchly and is gutted when the truth comes out.
7 Taking Cat Hair
While Harry and Ron can be pretty reckless at times, possessing a gift when it comes to getting themselves into trouble, the same can’t be said for Hermione. She’s far more mature than the two boys and vastly more responsible, as well. However, that doesn’t stop her from showing a sillier side to her character in the second movie and book of the series.
Hermione takes hair from Millicent Bulstrode, but it turns out to be cat hair. You’d think she’d have plucked it directly from the girl’s scalp, like Harry and Ron did, but, instead, chose to take a mysterious loose hair from the Slytherin student, instead. She pays dearly for this and is deeply embarrassed when she’s left with furry hair and whiskers on her face—oh, and a tail.
6 Going Off On Her Own In Chamber Of Secrets
Hogwarts is not a safe place for muggle-borns during Harry’s second year at the castle. When the Chamber of Secrets is opened, they immediately come under attack. Colin Creevey, Justin Finch-Fletchley, and Penelope Clearwater are just three of the students attacked by the Basilisk that lurks underneath the school.
But, Hermione, somewhat ridiculously, decides to go wandering around the school by herself during this dark hour. She ends up being petrified, only managing to escape death because she looked at Salazar Slytherin’s pet via a mirror, rather than directly in the eyes. Even so, it doesn’t disguise the fact she should have surrounded herself with a few different people for added security to avoid such trouble.
5 Keeping The Time Turner A Secret
Part of the reason why Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s friendship is so special is that they’re always open and honest with each other. Even the Boy Who Lived is upfront about his issues with the pair despite them often being in a position where they can’t relate whatsoever. But Hermione, during the Prisoner of Azkaban, elects against telling her friends that she’s using a time turner to get to multiple classes.
As we understand, she didn’t tell anybody because Professor McGonagall told her not to. But, we still can’t help but feel she should have informed Harry and Ron given how they’d have likely been unfazed and supportive of the whole idea. It made no real sense to keep this secret because it wasn’t a big deal in the grand scheme of things.
4 Writing Down A List Of DA Members (And Leaving It For People To See)
During the events of the Order of the Phoenix, Dumbledore’s Army is assembled. It’s a secret group of students who want to learn Defence Against the Dark Arts practically, rather than just reading about the subject via boring old textbooks. Given that it’s illegal, Hermione suggests everybody involved write their name down on a piece of paper so they know who they can trust.
However, she then decides to leave the sacred paper lying around. This comes back to haunt her because, when the organization is rattled, Dolores Umbridge knows everybody in on the act. This makes it easier for the group to be disbanded, and it still beggars belief Hermione didn’t do more to keep the secret intact.
3 Dating Cormac McLaggen
We completely understand Hermione wanting to make Ron jealous in the Half-Blood Prince when her crush starts dating Lavender Brown, but what we don’t understand is why she had to choose to date Cormac McLaggen in order to achieve this.
If we were Ron, this would just annoy us. We wouldn’t feel jealous, we’d feel infuriated. Cormac is a vile, repulsive individual, and it was inevitable Hermione would regret her choice of date for the Slug Party. Fortunately, her tactic does somehow work, and she and Ron’s romance kickstarts in the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.
2 Dismissing Harry’s Malfoy Theory
Also in the Half-Blood Prince, Harry has his suspicions that Draco Malfoy has become a Death Eater, replacing his father Lucius following a failed break-in at the Ministry of Magic the previous summer. He thinks he sees Draco showing off his Dark Mark in Borgin and Burkes and notes the suspicious behavior of the Slytherin student throughout the year. It’s definitely not a bad theory, given how Draco would be the perfect spy within Hogwarts.
Yet, Hermione is dismissive—and not just initially, pretty much throughout the whole book and movie. She just refuses to even entertain the idea and that’s just plain weird. Had she cottoned on sooner, perhaps Draco’s plan to smuggle Death Eaters into Hogwarts could have been foiled.
1 Fighting Bellatrix Lestrange
In the Deathly Hallows book, Hermione engages Bellatrix Lestrange in combat. This is despite the fact she’s actually using the witch’s wand against its true master, making it consequently weaker. When you’re going up against a duellist as skilled as Bellatrix, this is definitely unwise.
Fortunately, she’s saved by Molly Weasley. Molly ends up murdering the Death Eater, hitting her square in the chest mid-laugh. Bellatrix’s death enrages Lord Voldemort, who then shoots a Killing Curse in her direction. Harry jumps in to save her from certain defeat and manages to defeat the Dark Lord once and for all.
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