In Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, we met an unlikely hero in the gentle Magizoologist Newt Scamander, a kindly Hufflepuff who seemed to adore magical creatures more than people. In the films, Newt is a deeply talented wizard, an adept dueller and someone not averse to breaking rules. Remind you of anyone? But Newt is also very quiet in nature, doesn’t really go in for small talk and is generally quite awkward.
Even when Tina and Queenie welcome him to stay at their apartment, he sneaks off in the middle of the night, keener to track down more magical creatures than spend time with new human friends. But Newt does show great affection for his No-Maj companion Jacob, which makes sense, as Jacob is an outsider too.
When it came to his love of magical creatures, Newt’s empathy is clear, and he seemed most at ease in his enchanted suitcase with his fantastic beasts - or talking about them with others. In Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Newt finally reveals to Tina he likes her by... comparing her eyes to a salamander! Through the medium of his passion for magical creatures, Newt was able to navigate his awkwardness to connect to somebody.
The wizarding world has always championed outsiders – and Newt being the hero of the Fantastic Beasts films shows that you don’t need to be outwardly confident and bold (like his brother, Theseus) to succeed! A compassionate attitude is all you need, even if you trip over your words sometimes.
From one hero to another... this time we look at the Boy Who Lived. You may not think that Harry was ‘introverted’, per se, but it’s true that Harry got a lot of unwanted attention through his fame that he did not enjoy. While the likes of Gilderoy Lockhart thrived having throngs of adoring fans in his wake, Harry found the whole situation mostly uncomfortable.
Harry was happiest with his closest-knit group of friends (Hermione and Ron, naturally) and didn’t seem to really like the idea of parties or big events. At the Yule Ball, he mostly spent it hanging out with Ron (although, to be fair, he was miserable about Cho and his impending second task in the Triwizard Tournament) and also hated the idea of the Slug Club in his sixth year. And let’s not forget ‘that date’ with Cho at Madam Puddifoot’s.
Harry was far more at ease when he was off flying on a broom, sneaking around Hogwarts or solving mysteries rather than attending events. But with Lord Voldemort constantly tracking you down, it’s no surprise that Harry had other things on his mind beyond his social life.
Remus Lupin often liked to keep a low profile in life, which is understandable, due to turning into a werewolf every full moon. When we saw him as a young student at Hogwarts, he was always the quiet member of the Marauders, nose deep in a book, but still not averse to mischief-making. In later life, Dumbledore had to track Lupin down in a semi-derelict cottage in Yorkshire in order to convince him to teach at Hogwarts – showing that Lupin often favoured solitude where he could.
Lupin was not known to raise his voice or be the centre of attention in the classroom – always involving the students in his practical lessons as much as possible. When it came to resolving an argument or fixing a problem, Lupin found that a calm approach always worked best. As a member of the Order of the Phoenix, Lupin was usually thinking and strategizing, rather than being one of the louder members of the group – such as Sirius. And when it came to love, he tried to hide away from it with Tonks, always defaulting to wanting to be alone. But he came around in the end.
All of these introspective habits are what made Lupin one of the most beloved and relatable characters of the stories, and why he was known as most Hogwarts student’s favourite Defence Against the Dark Arts professor – not that there was much competition!
Luna had a habit of drifting off into her own world a lot – which is precisely why we love her so much. The wistful Ravenclaw often seemed so far away whenever she appeared in the books, whether that was reading a Quibbler upside down or simply contemplating something quietly. But while Luna’s quirky nature wasn’t very popular at Hogwarts (earning her the nickname ‘Loony Lovegood’) her friends were more important to her than any Butterbeer cork necklace. Upon visiting her bedroom in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry discovered she had made a mural on her ceiling, celebrating her friends.
So, if you, too - like Luna - much prefer life in your own little world, don’t be afraid to bring people into it sometimes! And above all - always be yourself.
In Harry Potter and the Cursed Child we meet Draco Malfoy’s son, Scorpius, who (despite the deadly name) couldn’t be farther from his dad in terms of personality. And when a stressed-out Albus Potter meets the geeky and charming Scorpius alone in a Hogwarts carriage, it is immediate how much the two have in common.
Their shared worry about living up to their parents’ expectations was a big one. The pair both had to contend with Hogwarts gossip too – Albus being in Slytherin and failing in classes led to students calling him the 'Slytherin Squib', while poor Scorpius had to struggle with rumours about his family's connection to Lord Voldemort. Thankfully, the pair found a kinship in each other, learning that it was fine to just chill out and laugh about sweets rather than try and impress anybody or be someone you’re not. While Scorpius was content in the Hogwarts library and Albus simply didn’t want people comparing him to his famous dad, the best friends found relatable anxieties in each other.