A to Z Challenge Day 14: Neville Longbottom (the Heart of Gryffindor)


Fair warning, if you’ve never read the Harry Potter novels, this post is going to contain HUGE SPOILERS because there is simply no way to talk about this character the way I want to talk about him without having HUGE ENORMOUS SPOILERS!!! You’ve been warned!

I know I’m not alone on this one: I think that Neville Longbottom was one of the best characters in the Harry Potter Universe. Take it right from the beginning: he was an insignificant kind of kid, clumsy and unspectacular in any way, and super easy to pick on. He was targeted by bullies and teachers alike. Despite that, he takes it upon himself to stand up to his friends and House-mates, to try and stop them from breaking rules. He fails, but the point is that he tried to do what was right, even if it meant possibly losing some of the only friends he had. He is the epitome of a loser, as far as most of his schoolmates are concerned, but he has nothing but heart.

Moving on through the story, Neville is regularly picked on for a number of reasons and continues being clumsy and forgetful and quite plainly pretty pathetic. It takes multiple books before he even starts to find his niche in the school, to catch on to something that he truly enjoys and is good at. He’s regularly tested in a number of ways, dealing with family issues, a pretty depressing past, and regular problems with school work and the bullies that still hang on like leeches. He’s the underdog that you can’t help but root for because he’s just this sweet thing who constantly has the world spitting on him. He perfectly describes so many of us: he’s not perfect by a long shot, and he’s just trying to find his place.

Eventually we wind up at the conclusion of the story arc, and Neville, of all people, has taken a lead role in the fight against evil. He risks life and limb to fight for his school, his friends, his family, and anyone else who requires protection. Eventually he stands up – alone, I might add – to the biggest, baddest bad guy of all, looks him in the face, and declares that they will not stop, they will not give in, and they will fight for what is right because it is right, and that it doesn’t matter whether they have the Chosen One anymore because good will triumph.

Tell me that’s not a hero right there.

26 thoughts on “A to Z Challenge Day 14: Neville Longbottom (the Heart of Gryffindor)

  1. Neville turned out awesome in the end! I read J.K.R.’s synopsis of all the characters years later. I love the idea that Neville lives above the Leaky Cauldron and is married to Hannah. He would have certainly been the “Cool Professor” and I bet the one all the girls had a crush on.

    Neville was a bad ass in the end of The Deathly Hallows.

    Timothy S. Brannan
    The Other Side, April Blog Challenge: The A to Z of Witches

    • I never read the synopsis, but I can definitely see that as Neville’s future. 🙂

      And I agree…total bad-ass. His speech to Voldemort in the movies was one of my favorite things ever. ❤

    • I agree totally. The other characters grew for sure, but Neville made this slow, steady complete transformation over the course of the series. It was truly remarkable. 🙂

  2. I secretly hoped he was the chosen one when the books were still being released. After all, he was born on the same day and he could have easily been the chosen one.

    • I thought about that a bit myself. I kinda thought that it would be cool if Neville ended up being the one to defeat Voldemort somehow, but I was happy with the part he played coming on the end. 🙂

  3. I loved his character from the very first book when he bravely stands up to his friends saying that he’ll fight them to stop them from breaking the rules!

  4. I am a HP Maniac . A friend directed me to this blog and I am glad I found this post 🙂 Ur challenge theme is unique. Infact next year am thinking to take harry potter characters as theme for A to Z. Having said that Neville is a super hero. I Fell for him when he gets 10 extra points for gryffindor house and in the last part he is just too hot and handsome 🙂
    A hug from a HP Lover. I am a fellow A to Z participant

    • I’m glad you found your way here as well! 😀
      It’s been a fun theme, I have to say, even when I had to struggle with certain letters. 🙂
      And I totally agree…when Neville wins those ten points in the first book/movie, I get little heart flutters. lol 😀

  5. Neville is one of my favorite characters in the series, and a perfect example of how JKR can plant an idea in one book and carry it through the series. From being told he doesn’t belong in Gryffindor in the first book to pulling the sword out of the hat in the last (forshadowed in the second book when Harry does the same thing. ) Neville develops beautifully. Thanks for the great post.

    • A very good point. There are a few hiccups in the Harry Potter novels of course (*cough*timeturner*cough*), but I am genuinely impressed with Rowling’s ability to lead ideas from one book to the next. It made the series feel like one enormous book, which is a very good thing in my opinion. 🙂

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