Tag: Dolores Umbridge

The Top 10 Best ‘Harry Potter’ Teachers

It’s Teacher Appreciation Week here at Bookstr and you should be appreciating the teachers across the world! Teachers face extremely difficult jobs, having to manage large classes and educate with often little reward. To showcase what makes teachers so special, let’s examine the teachers of Harry Potter, ranking them from the worst to the best. Now, this is just on their merit’s as teachers, not on them as individuals or people, merely on their skills in the classroom. Who are the best and who are the worst? Let’s dive in and find out!

 

10. Dolores Umbridge

 

Dolores Umbridge, a middle aged woman dressed in a pink sweater stands at attention

Image via Harry Potter wiki

Holding the position of Defense Against the Dark Arts professor, Dolores Umbridge was unquestionably the worst in the series history, both as a professor (and a human being but let’s stick to the rules!) Despite her sickly sweet demeanor, Dolores Umbridge was appointed by the Ministry of Magic to oversee the school and her presence was instantly an oppressive one. A vicious bully and tormentor, she inflicted harsh punishments on her students for misbehavior, including making Harry carve the words “I MUST NOT TELL LIES” over and over again into his own skin! She also created a hostile work environment, expressed outright contempt for Hogwarts education system, and consistently challenged Dumbledore’s authority, which just made her a terrible professor. And she even refused to teach her students Defense Against the Dark Arts, making her outright useless as a source of education! Umbridge is unquestionably a terrible professor and not one you should admire. At all.

 

9. Severus Snape

 

Severus Snape standing in black cloak against a purple background

Image via Potter talk

The Potions master until Order of the Phoenix and then Half-Blood Prince, Snape is now admired for his love for Lily Potter and for secretly protecting Harry during his time at Hogwarts. But there’s no doubt he was a horrible teacher, downright abusive towards Harry and exhibiting favoritism towards Slytherin. He bullies students constantly, especially Harry, Neville, and Ron, putting them on the spot with difficult questions and making them feel constant anxiety in his presence. It’s not fair for Snape to pick on his students as much as he does, especially for a grudge he should have gotten over a long time ago. While he may be a good person deep down, Snape has too many issues to make him a valuable teacher.

 

8. Gilderoy Lockhart

 

Gildeory Lockhart stands in a golden uniform against a dark backdrop

Image via Pottermore

Lockhart skated by on good looks, charm and blatant lies. Lockhart wrote about encounters with dark creatures, painting himself as a perfect hero, easily able to dispatch fearsome monsters the world over, but all the books he wrote were actually fabrications and completely false. This made him a useless educator when he was hired for position of Defense Against the Dark Arts, often making a buffoon of himself and skating by on the skin of his teeth. When he was asked to kill the Basilisk terrorizing Hogwarts, Lockhart attempted to flee, clearly showing once and for all that he was utterly unqualified for his job.

 

7. Horace Slughorn

 

Horace Slughorn standing in a well tailored suit in front of a bunch of old photographs

Image via Harry Potter wiki

The Potions master, Slughorn wasn’t a horrible professor but he wasn’t a good one either. He generally played favorites with students, hosting club meetings for students who could pull favors for him after graduation. Slughorn put himself above his students, being more self-serving than anything else, but he was at least competent as a professor and gave Harry a more positive experience as a Potions professor than Snape ever did.

 

6. Filius FLitwick 

 

The diminutive Filius Flitwick standing in a tuxedo and holding a wand

Image via Pininterest

A supportive mentor to his students, Filius was a middle of the road professor, neither particularly good nor particularly bad. But he was always very nice to his classes, teaching them spells as best he could. Although not a massive presence in the books, what little we saw of Flitwick led us to believe he would be a perfectly acceptable professor, just not a particularly memorable one. Which, sometimes, is the best you can ask for!

 

5. Rubeus Hagrid

 

The towering figure of Rubeus Hagrid clad in furs

Image via Harry Potter wiki

The half-giant and beloved friend to Harry, Hagrid was a kind educator who had a deep love for the creatures of the wizarding world. He turned this passion into the official professor for Care of Magical Creatures, allowing students the opportunity for a hands on approach to caring for monsters and critters. He had a very deep knowledge of monsters, allowing him to provide his students with an intimate look at them. However, his deep love of creatures sometimes made him underestimate how dangerous they could be, resulting in a few potentially deadly encounters during his time as a professor.

 

4. Rolanda Hooch

 

Image via Harry Potter Wiki

A valuable teacher to her students, Madame Hooch taught her students how to fly and play Quidditch, a dangerous game that required a firm hand to prevent students from crashing or killing each other. Hooch was up to the task, providing a stern and competent presence who punish students harshly but encouraged them deeply for their successes. Under her tutelage, Harry became a very wizard of the skies and always stayed calm, even as she was being screamed at for providing calls people didn’t like as a referee during Quidditch matches.

 

3. Pomona Sprout

 

Pomona Sprout stands in a greenhouse clad in Herbology attire with a witch's hat on

Image via Bustle

Pomona Sprout is a great professor who doesn’t get a lot of screen time but her lesson plans and overall demeanor showcase her as one of the best teachers despite her limited appearances. She follows a logical profession, getting her students used to ‘easy’ magic plants before working them up slowly towards the harder stuff, while making sure everyone is safe and creating a fun environment at the same time with her hands on approach to herbology. She’s pretty great and we only wish we saw more of her at work in the greenhouse.

 

2. Remus Lupin

 

The dapper Remus Lupin stands in a well lit room in a suit and tie

Image via Bustle

One of the best professors and no doubt the best teacher of Defense Against the Dark Arts, Lupin heads the class during Prisoner of Azakaban. Very knowledgable in his studies, Remus Lupin creates a hands on atmosphere to the work he performs in the classroom, allowing students the opportunity to apply their skills in a practical, yet controlled setting, testing them against real dangers without putting them in actual danger. He’s also humorous, wise, and very down to earth, even taking the Hogwarts Express to get to know the student body better. Unfortunately, his one flaw is that he’s a werewolf and results in his eventual resignation. Although he takes steps to control his other side, unfortunately being a werewolf is a very serious risk on campus and although he never hurt anyone, he could have. Still, Lupin remains one of the best teachers at Hogwarts and a presence we to which it was incredibly difficult to bid farewell.

 

1. Minerva Mcgonagall

 

An elderly lady wearing a witch's hat and holding a glass of wine.

Image via Vulture

Minerva is the best professor at Hogwarts, with a tough, no nonsense, and fearless disposition as professor of Transfiguration and Deputy Headmistress, the type of teacher who will challenge you but doesn’t play favorites and always is fair to you in the end no matter who you are. She loves all her students despite her hard shell, and only pushes them to make them excel. While many students are scared of her initially but learn to love her when they truly understand her. She’s a staple at Hogwarts during Harry’s time and becomes a true leader to the student body, just as beloved as Dumbledore. We love you!

 

 

Featured Image Via Harry Potter Wiki

 

 

Top 10 Most Fearsome Evildoers in Literature

There’s something fun about bad guys. A memorable villain is just as much a key ingredient of literature as the hero, acting as the antagonist and obstacle in the way of the heroes goals. If done properly, a villain will be just as remembered and often as beloved as the hero, hailed for their command of evil minions, nefarious lines, and the threatening situations they put our plucky main characters in. But who are the best? Who are the cream of the crop among literary bad guys? Well, here are the top ten best and darkest villains in literature!

 

10. Annie Wilkes- ‘Misery’ 

 

A closeup of Annie Wilkes from 'Misery'

Image via Stephen King wiki

Annie Wilkes is a cautionary tale, showcasing how mentally unstable being a ‘superfan’ can make you. When writer Paul Sheldon breaks both legs in an accident, Annie takes him in and begins to nurse him back to health. But slowly, she reveals she’s obsessed with the Misery series Paul writes and the latest book kills off Misery. Annie Wilkes snaps at this and forces Paul to write a new novel that undoes Misery’s death. She subjects him to multiple horrors within her house, such as slicing off Paul’s leg with an axe and stabbing a state trooper who tries to rescue Paul before running him over with a lawnmower. Annie Wilkes grows increasingly psychotic over the course of the novel and just as Paul does, the reader becomes increasing desperate to escape her presence. Annie Wilkes was played by Kathy Bates in the 1990 film adaptation, winning an Oscar for bringing the character to life.

 

9. Patrick Bateman- ‘American Psycho’

 

Christian Bale as Patrick Bateman sits in a business suit on a cell phone

Image via Variety

Debuting in 1991 in the novel American Psycho, Patrick Bateman is a deeply, deeply disturbed man. A young investment banker living in Manhattan during the 1980s, Patrick Bateman is a serial killer who begins the novel in semi-control of his killing urges but spirals completely out of control as the novel progresses. Told from Bateman’s POV, the novel paints him as a racist, a homophobic, a narcissist, and a psychopath. However, Bateman may not even be a serial killer, as the novel frames his crimes as possibly not even having happened after he confesses at the book’s end. Nevertheless, there is no doubt that Bateman is a deeply disturbed man and one whose mental state is at rock bottom, even if he’s a serial killer or not.

 

8. Count Olaf- ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’

 

The villainous Count Olaf stands with two crows perched on his shoulder and arm

Image via Lemony Snicket wiki

Children’s novels often have brought to life some of the most iconic villains in pop culture and Count Olaf is no exception. The main antagonist for the majority of the series, obsessed with claiming the fortune of the Baudelaire orphans. Over the course of the series, he appears in each location the children find themselves in, from steel mills to a reptile zoo to a carnival. Each time, Count Olaf assumes a new disguise in his pursuit of the kids, fooling everyone but them with his distinct personas. He may be a murderer with a flair for arson but Count Olaf is always a lot of fun, hammy and over the top in his villainy. Yet, at the end of the series, he manages to become a sympathetic figure and even allies with the children against a worse evil before he meets his demise, showing perhaps that he was more complicated than we thought.

 

7. Big brother- ‘1984′ 

A portrait of the dictator 'Big Brother' in a propaganda poster

Image via Wikipedia

Less a character than a symbol of tyranny and oppression, Big Brother is nonetheless the ruling leader of Oceania in 1984Never seen in person, Big Brother might just a symbol of the tyrannical Party but that doesn’t matter. People believe he exists and the Party reinforces this belief to the oppressed populace. Posters decorate the city that bear the now famous slogan ‘Big Brother is watching you’. The message is always clear: Big Brother sees all and if there is dissent, he knows. Big Brother becomes akin to God, a portrait of a tyranny realized at its terrifying conclusion.

 

6. Mr. Croup and Vandemar- ‘Neverwhere’

 

 

Croup and Vandemar, two brutish thugs of inhuman disposition stand next to each other in victorian dress

Image via Pininterest 

 

Croup and Vandemar are a double-act, a pair of villains who are hired to track down the heroes in NeverwhereIt is not made entirely clear what they are but they’re not human, that’s for certain, as they have a habit of eating live animals and sometimes, chunks of furniture! Croup is a small fat man who is possessed with a verbose style of speech while Vandemar is his brutish partner who barely speaks and specializes more in killing things. The pair certainly make a memorable impression whenever they’re onscreen, serving as an excellent and terrifying pair of evil thugs who can’t be stopped by regular weapons.

 

5. Regal Farseer-‘The Farseer Trilogy’

 

The handsome Prince Regal dressed in kingly attire wearing a crown

Regal Farseer is a vain and cruel prince in line to acquire the throne in the fantasy kingdom of Buckeep. However, his plans of ascension are thrown into a snag when a bastard son of his father, Chivalry Farseer, called Fitz (the protagonist) comes to Buckeep. Regal is aware of Fitz’s heritage and plots to kill him. He eventually acquires the throne throughout the trilogy and Fitz is brought into conflict with his half-brother to get it back. Regal embodies jealously, cruelty, and arrogance, being one dark and vicious prince.

 

4. Randall Flagg-‘The Stand’

 

The dark, cloaked figure of Randall Flagg holding a playing card before a red backdrop
Image via Stephen King wiki

 

Described as Stephen King’s ‘ubervillain’, Randall Flagg appears through Stephen King’s multiverse to wreck constant havoc. He first appears in The Standas a demonic cult leader trying to establish a new society filled with his loyal followers after a plague has destroyed the Earth’s population. Flagg seemingly meets his end when his blown up by a nuclear warhead but reappears throughout further Stephen King works, revealing himself to be an immortal sorcerer who travels throughout space and time, his ultimate goal being to climb The Dark Tower to become a god. Assuming a vast number of identities, Flagg is always a manipulative, dark presence who strikes fear whenever he appears, no matter the setting or genre.

 

3. Professor Moriarty- ‘Sherlock Holmes’

 

Professor Moriarty, standing in a hunched stance while dressed in victorian apparel

Image Via Wikipedia

Even if you’ve never read a Sherlock Holmes story, you know this guy. Moriarty appears in The Final Problem, becoming famous as the antagonist who would (temporarily) kill Sherlock Holmes. There, Holmes has penetrated his criminal organization and is forced to flee across the country from Moriarty’s wrath. The pursuit ends on Reichenbach Falls, where the two fight and seemingly plummet to their deaths. Moriarty never appears directly onscreen, as the novel is narrated by Watson who never crosses path with the criminal leader but he is practically an overlord of the London underworld, just as brilliant as Sherlock but uses his mind for evil. It’s no wonder Moriarty was promoted to Holmes’s archenemy, he became such an iconic figure that adaptations see fit to use him as Sherlock’s ultimate enemy.

 

2. Dolores Umbridge- ‘Harry Potter’

 

The seemingly sweet Dolores Umbridge sips tea while dressed in pink

Image via Harry Potter wiki

Forget Voldemort, Dolores Umbridge is a far more evil character because of how real she feels. Seemingly a sweet little lady, Dolores Umbridge reveals herself to be sadistic, cruel, and hits all the buttons to make her hate throughout the series. She interrupts Dumbledore during the Feast, she speaks to the students as if they’re a bunch of small children, she punishes Harry for his misbehaving by making him carve the words “I MUST NOT TELL LIES” over and over again into his skin while she watches with a sweet smile. Dolores hides behind her position of authority to inflict her sadistic whims on Hogwarts and its a sigh of relief when gets what’s coming to her at the end, although some think it wasn’t enough for this woman.

 

1. Sauron- ‘The Lord of the Rings’

 

The black armored figure of Sauron stands tall

Image via LOTR Wiki

The titular Lord of the RingsSauron is unique among fantasy evil overlords in that he never appears directly in the trilogy but his presence consumes everything and he’s responsible for every evil act in one way or another. A former Maiar, a divine angel, Sauron turned away from the light in his lust for power and crafted the One Ring to rule Middle-earth. But the forces of men and elves fought against him, destroying his physical form. Sauron took years to establish himself again, confining himself to his tower in Mordor and building a dark army to conquer Middle-earth while searching to regain the One Ring to claim ultimate victory. Sauron is arguably scarier for how he never appears, only referenced by Gandalf, Saruman, and Gollum but the way they speak of him, how they describe what he is, leaves no doubt that he is one of the greatest villains in literary history. Sometimes, the imagination is more powerful than what we can see.