Earlier today, we reported that J.K. Rowling cleared up any confusion between Harry Potter‘s Severus Snape and Fantastic Beasts‘ Queenie Goldstein and their different abilities to read minds.
Turns out, Rowling has been hammering out several other supposed plot holes from ‘Fantastic Beasts’ (and a couple from the original books), and pulled them all together in her brand spanking new website, www.jkrowling.com.
So yes, to answer your (every) question: J.K. Rowling has an FAQ section.
It covers everything from ‘why did Newt Scamander take a Muggle cruise liner to the States when Apparition and Wizarding customs were apparently both feasible options (they weren’t)’ to ‘why can’t all magical crimes be solved with a healthy dose of Veritaserum instead of the Kafka-esque Wizengamot‘?
Finally, the answers you’ve been looking for:
Why couldn’t Newt just Apparate to the USA? Why did he go by boat?
Apparition becomes increasingly risky over long distances. As with most magic, much depends on the skill of the spell-caster: Apparition requires knowledge of the terrain to which one is moving, or the ability to visualise it clearly. Cross-continental Apparition would almost certainly result in severe injury or death.
Moreover, the beasts in Newt’s case had varying magical natures. Some could have Apparated with him, but others could not.
Why did Newt go in through No-Maj customs?
He was transporting magical creatures at a time when this was illegal. No-Majs were far easier to fool than the wizarding checkpoint would have been.
Why isn’t Veritaserum used in interrogations?
It is, but skilled wizards can avoid its effects by using antidotes and charms. A gifted Occlumens could also resist Veritaserum.
I imagine it must be either extremely trying or very rewarding – or both – to have thousands of fans constantly trying to trip you up with plot holes for a world you started creating in the early 90s, but Rowling wears it on her sleeve.
The rest of her answers either concern plot holes that’ve been bugging Harry Potter fans for years (christ, get another hobby), or else new plot holes that were thrown into existence by ‘Fantastic Beasts’.
Why wasn’t the Horcrux inside Harry destroyed when he was bitten by the Basilisk in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets?
A Horcrux can only be destroyed if its container is damaged beyond repair. Harry was healed by Fawkes. Had he died, the Horcrux would indeed have been destroyed.
Why couldn’t Newt use ‘Accio’ to retrieve all his beasts?
‘Accio’ only works on inanimate objects. While people or creatures may be indirectly moved by ‘Accio-ing’ objects that they are wearing or holding, this carries all kinds of risks because of the likelihood of injury to the person or beast attached to an object travelling at close to the speed of light.
Why did ‘revelio’ undo the effects of Polyjuice Potion?
It didn’t. Grindelwald’s Transfiguration surpasses that of most wizards, so he used a spell, not a potion, to take on the appearance of Percival Graves.
Why didn’t Harry Potter develop an Obscurus?
An Obscurus is developed under very specific conditions: trauma associated with the use of magic, internalised hatred of one’s own magic and a conscious attempt to suppress it.
The Dursleys were too frightened of magic ever to acknowledge its existence to Harry. While Vernon and Petunia had a confused hope that if they were nasty enough to Harry his strange abilities might somehow evaporate, they never taught him to be ashamed or afraid of magic. Even when he was scolded for ‘making things happen’, he didn’t make any attempt to suppress his true nature, nor did he ever imagine that he had the power to do so.
If your burning question isn’t answered here, then Rowling says it’s only because the answer will accidentally give away plots for the next five movies. Alternatively, she DGAF.
Personally, I think it’s rude she didn’t answer this age-old question:
If Time Turners were readily available in the Ministry of Magic until the events in ‘Order of the Phoenix‘, and 14-year-old Hermione Granger was allowed one of these highly dangerous objects to attend the monumentally useless class ‘Muggle Studies’… then why the FUCK didn’t Fred and George Weasley notice their little brother was sleeping with a man named Peter Pettigrew for three bloody years?
I shall not rest until I’ve been given the answers I seek.
Photo: Warner Bros.