Ronald Bilius Weasley was one of the best friends a boy wizard could have: brave, loyal, funny and a priceless asset in Harry Potter’s fight against evil. But here’s the thing: no one’s perfect. And that especially goes for Ron, who, at his worst, had a tendency to act like a berk, a git, a prat; a petulant teenager prone to doing and saying mean, silly things like all teenagers do. Here are some are of the best – or worst – examples...
Alright, so Hermione didn’t make the best first impression in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, coming across to both Harry and Ron as a little condescending. In her defence, though, at least she had actually done some magical research before getting to Hogwarts. But her knowledgeable attitude hit a particular nerve in Ron during that fateful Charms class, in which she famously patronised his inept spell-casting (‘It’s Wing-gar-dium Levi-o-sa’). Even so, that was no excuse for Ron to retaliate with something even worse: to meanly say, ‘It’s no wonder no one can stand her,’ loud enough for Hermione to overhear, causing her to flee in tears. Not to mention following it up with, ‘So? She must’ve noticed she’s got no friends.’
It’s a good job that this all leads to Hermione running to the girls’ bathroom, in which she encounters a troll who is then defeated by a guilty Harry and Ron – bonding the three for life, or else Ron would just have been spiteful for nothing!
Right, so let’s get this straight. We have two young wizards, on their way to Hogwarts, who find that they can’t get past the magical barrier at platform nine and three-quarters and have missed the Hogwarts Express. Oh no! What a disaster! What are they to do? They could, of course, find a nearby wizard and alert them to the problem. Or they could send an owl to Hogwarts to report the issue – allowing Albus Dumbledore to investigate the cause and, presumably, arrange alternative transport.
What a plonker.
Maybe it was the hormones, or maybe it was because things had started getting a bit more complicated at Hogwarts, but Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was a pretty special year for fans of Ron being the worst. One of the best examples was his reaction to Harry being mysteriously chosen for the Triwizard Tournament: Ron not only refused to believe his best friend’s protests that he had not put his name into the Goblet of Fire, but then proceeded to act like a petulant and jealous idiot rather than support Harry in this time of great stress. This, to a certain extent, was understandable. It can’t be easy to be constantly overshadowed by your best friend, one of the most famous wizards that ever lived. But boy, Ron did not handle that particular situation very well.
The only reason, it seems, that Ron and Hermione had such a ‘Will they, won’t they?’ romance was because Ron kept on messing it up. A classic example of this was the Yule Ball debacle, which was such a momentous example of Ron being a git that it comes in three parts:
Before the Yule Ball: The first was Ron realising that he didn’t have a date for the Yule Ball, the school dance that celebrates the Triwizard Tournament. After classily stating that he didn’t want to go to the Ball with a ‘troll’, he further compounded his Casanova credentials by asking Hermione in a way that made it clear that she was his last resort, and then not believing her when she said that she was already going with someone else.
During: This was when Ron insinuated that Hermione’s date, Viktor Krum, only asked her to the dance so that he could gain information on Harry’s Triwizard Tournament strategy. To be clear, what Ron was saying here was that the only reason anyone would ever ask out Hermione was to get closer to Harry.
After: Ron, clearly jealous that Hermione went to the Yule Ball with Krum rather than him, initiated a blazing row afterwards.
‘Well, if you don’t like it, you know what the solution is, don’t you?’ yelled Hermione; her hair was coming down out of its elegant bun now, and her face was screwed up in anger.
‘Oh yeah?’ Ron yelled back. ‘What’s that?’
‘Next time there’s a ball, ask me before someone else does, and not as a last resort.’
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
As established, Ron was not exactly what you would call a ladies’ man. Yes, he was only a teenager with much to learn, but he could be pretty cruel, on occasion. One of his less-than-finer moments was his exhibitionist relationship with Lavender Brown, a girl who clearly liked Ron more than Ron liked her, which was clearly intended to make Hermione jealous. Stringing someone along under false pretences was bad enough, but then there was the fact that, when Ron had had enough, he was too cowardly to end the relationship himself; waiting for Lavender to finally do it, having grown furious with how much time he was spending with Hermione.
It’s debatable whether this incident counts; whether Ron, under the influence of a Horcrux, was actually in control of his actions. Either way, this was the point in which Ron grew increasingly frustrated and depressed with the slow progress of Harry’s hunt for Lord Voldemort’s Horcruxes; a frustration which culminated in him abandoning the mission in a huge huff.
But, of course, he instantly regretted it – a result, presumably, of the Horcrux not amplifying his most negative emotions. And eventually he redeemed himself in style, returning to save Harry from drowning in a frozen pool, and destroying the Horcrux with the Sword of Gryffindor.
Because that’s the thing about Ron. He may have been a git and a very bad practitioner of romance, but the good always managed to outweigh the bad.
Now, here's a nicer article about Ron to show there's no hard feelings!