ByJancy Richardson, writer at
To avoid fainting, keep repeating 'It's only a movie...It's only a movie...'
Jancy Richardson

There's one HUGE thing about Harry Potter that everyone always forgets.

It could all have been about Neville Longbottom.

  Neville Longbottom: the 'other chosen one'...
Neville Longbottom: the 'other chosen one'...

This is first mentioned in Professor Trelawney's prophecy:

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies...and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not...

  Professor Trelawney: only 98% crazy.
Professor Trelawney: only 98% crazy.

Dumbledore clarifies that Harry AND Neville were eligible to be 'the one with the power':

The odd thing is, Harry...that it may not have meant you at all. Sibyll's prophecy could have applied to two wizard boys, both born at the end of July that year, both of whom had parents in the Order of the Phoenix, both sets of parents having narrowly escaped Voldemort three times. One, of course, was you. The other was Neville Longbottom.

  Neville looks a lot more 'chosen' as he gets older!
Neville looks a lot more 'chosen' as he gets older!

I know, I know. My first reaction was 'well, Voldemort marked Harry as his equal, making Harry the Chosen One. End of Story.' And yet...

There are some cool hidden nuggets that indicate J.K. Rowling really thought about this alternative universe potential...


1. Neville is very forgetful, and not very good with magic.

Is it possible that Neville's forgetfulness and lack of ability have been caused by a protection spell? The Remembrall, the late appearance of his wizarding skills, his apparently repressed memories of his parents...

Perhaps his Grandmother implemented some sort of protection charm so Neville would never have to bear the pressure of his potential destiny.


2. There are many subtle similarities between Harry and Neville.

Had Voldemort chosen Neville, it would be Neville sitting opposite Harry bearing the lightning-shaped scar and the weight of the prophecy. . . . Or would it? Would Neville's mother have died to save him, as Lily had died for Harry? Surely she would. . . .
But what if she had been unable to stand between her son and Voldemort? Would there then have been no "Chosen One" at all? An empty seat where Neville now sat and a scarless Harry who would have been kissed good-bye by his own mother, not Ron's?

Neville and Harry both argued with the Sorting Hat and they're both from ancient Wizarding bloodlines. What Harry is really realizing is that it was chance that positioned him as the Chosen One, not any particular qualities that he possesses.


3. Neville is similar to Peter Pettigrew - but chose the path of good.

Pettigrew is an apt analogue for Neville. Small, awkward and less brilliant than his friends, he is described by McGonagall:

That fat little boy who was always tagging around after them at Hogwarts? Hero-worshipped Black and Potter. Never quite in their league, talent-wise.

Remind you of anyone?

But Neville never chases glory for its own sake, never bows to cowardice. He stands up to his friends and his enemies alike. Voldemort even offers Neville a place in his ranks:

You show spirit and bravery, and you come of noble stock. You will make a very valuable Death Eater. We need your kind, Neville Longbottom.

Neville's reply - 'I'll join you when hell freezes over' - is the opposite of Pettigrew's. He could have been a weak little coward, jealous of his friends and drawn to power, but he chose not to be.

In fact, Neville really typifies Dumbledore's famous quote:

It is our choices...that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.

My point is, we shouldn't forget that Neville is pretty frickin' cool. I think he would have made a good Chosen One.


Would Neville have made a good Chosen One?


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