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  • Abandon Shipping / Ship Sinking: Harry/Cho was swiftly sunken in this book and along with it nearly all of its supporters.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Luna, in the mistletoe scene in the Room of Requirement: Legitimately worried about Nargles, or covering for her dashed hopes that she could finally snag a kiss from someone?
  • And the Fandom Rejoiced: Evanna Lynch in the movie is Luna Lovegood.
  • Angst Dissonance: Harry's angst after Cedric's death and being left out of the fight against Voldemort by the Order (because the kid who saved their asses four times already can't possibly be useful), while justified, was still an annoyance to many readers.
    • It's likely that Harry has PTSD in this book. He watched a classmate die, was tortured, and forced to fight an older wizard with over 40 years and a lot of power on him. His angst is perfectly reasonable, but according to some doesn't make it any less obnoxious.
  • Anti-Sue: Umbridge is given the inverse of many Common Mary Sue Traits, is hated in-universe, and completely derails the plot set up by the previous book while simultaniously diluting the plot of this book.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: Subverted with "Snape's Worst Memory". All we get after seeing it is some angsting from Harry over how big of a jerk his father and Sirius were as teens, and then it's never mentioned again. However, in Deathly Hallows, we find out precisely why it's Snape's worst memory: It destroyed his friendship with Lily, the only woman he ever loved.
  • Character Shilling: Done with Ginny at points, especially at the expense of poor Cho.
  • Complete Monster: Bellatrix Lestrange and Umbridge are two of the most sadistic, repulsive characters in fiction. Many fans hate Umbridge more than the Big Bad of the series, Voldemort.
    • Umbridge more so. At least Lestrange knows she's evil, admits it, and doesn't try to pretend she isn't. Umbridge, on the other hand, acts under the guise of being on the good side, caring about the Hogwarts students, acting in the best interest of the Ministry of Magic, and acts extremely happy while doing so.
      • Additionally, in DH, her actions definitely confirm this and that she was not Just Following Orders. She's more than happy to stay on in the Ministry after Voldemort takes over and cheerfully presides over the show trials of Muggle-borns.
      • Umbridge is certainly loyal to the Ministry of Magic, but that most certainly does not excuse the atrocities that she committed. Any decent government would have sacked her (if not prosecuted her), intense loyalty or not.
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome: Many, such as when Harry is ambushed by Slytherins who are angry about their fathers being sent to Azkaban during the ending. They unwisely choose to attack him outside of a compartment filled with DA members, who all rush out and jinx the Slytherins so thoroughly that they apparently resemble slugs.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Aside from the obvious, Bellatrix is treated like a goddess by Fan Fiction.
  • Freud Was Right: Dolores Umbridge's "avoidance and theoretics" approach to D.A.D.A as opposed to actual knowledge drew a lot of parallels to the U.S. sex ed debate. And that book was heavy handed as it was.
    • Parodied in this video.
    • The Room of Requirement: a hidden area where teenagers sneak off to engage in "forbidden activities" and risk getting into deep trouble if caught.
  • Funny Aneurysm Moment: It's too easy to laugh at Neville's constant screw-ups, not to mention the fact that he lives with a near-tyrannical grandmother. But then in the fourth and fifth books, we learn exactly what happened to his mother and father, and how it has affected him. Then we feel guilty for having laughed.
  • Genius Bonus: In St Mungo's, Lockhart is wearing a lilac-coloured robe. Three books ago, he said that lilac was his favourite colour -- a hint that some of the old Gilderoy remains.
  • Growing the Beard: This did it for the remaining critics, if POA and GOF failed to do so.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Remember Molly's Boggart? Fred dies during the Battle of Hogwarts.
    • On a related note, Harry tells Sirius that Dolores Jane Umbridge is no different than a Death Eater with some of her tactics. Guess who she ends up siding with two books later?
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Zacharias Smith's "I don't think Expelliarmus is exactly going to help us against You-Know-Who, do you?", given that this spell is what finally brings Voldemort down.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: Since this introduced some new characters, it also launched a few new ships. Most prominent was Harry/Luna and Neville/Luna.
  • Love to Hate: Few, if any, fictional characters are as supremely and utterly despicable as Dolores Umbridge.
  • Memetic Mutation: Umbridge's "I will have order!" She says it once in the movie and never in the book. Tellingly, by the time the next film was made, they saw fit to include an Umbridge doll in Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes which constantly squeals "I will have order!"
  • Moral Event Horizon: Dolores Jane Umbridge has long since passed over it. See Complete Monster.
    • To clarify: She starts by cheerfully calling Harry a liar, forcing him to cut into his own flesh and do lines with his own blood, attempts to sabotage Gryffindor's chances of winning the Quidditch Cup by removing three of their best players, cruelly mocks Hagrid's teaching, gleefully tries to sack Professor Trelawney (and thoroughly enjoys her despondency), takes over from Dumbledore, tries to arrest Hagrid for no reason, nearly kills McGonagall in a sneak attack, and finally tries to used the Cruciatus Curse on Harry. Oh, and it turns out she was the one who set Dementors on Harry and Dudley in the beginning. So, take your pick. Oh, and guess what? She gets worse in Deathly Hallows.
    • In the movie, there's a scene that shows that she forces first years to use the Blood Quill.
  • Nightmare Fuel: The Death Eater whose head -- just his head -- was regressed to infancy.
    • Not to mention when those brain things attack Ron in the Department of Mysteries.
      • Umbridge. She sits in as a voting member of people's trials? She's allowed around children?! Her tactics are so draconian she may as well be a Death Eater. And Harry says so himself: "She's foul enough to be one."
  • Straw Man Has a Point: While calling Marietta "a delightful person who made a mistake" is probably being too easy on her, everything else Cho says in defense of Marietta is actually true, while Harry's retorts are fairly easy to poke holes in.
  • The Scrappy: Umbridge is actually hated by some fans even more than the Big Bad. In this case, it's actually perfectly justified.
  • Tear Jerker: Molly Weasley's Boggart. Also, Neville visiting his parents in St. Mungo's.
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