8 Things I Learned From Severus Snape


If you talk in a slow drawl, you might as well wear all black and teach in a dungeon.

1. Good And Evil Is Isn’t Black, White, Or Grey. Rather, It’s A Crazed Artist’s Pallet

Snape is biggest hero in the entire series. Yet in many ways, he’s also one of the most evil — despite his clear heroism and sacrifice, he spends the entire series being downright cruel to Harry, Neville, and the rest of the Gryffindor posse.

The contradiction is what makes him such a strong character, but it’s what also made him so incredibly unpleasant while he was in the same room as Parry Otter and Roonil Wazlib.

2. You Really Don’t Know Anyone — You Only Know The Part Of Them They Show You

One of my favorite moments in the series is when Harry chases after Snape on the Hogwarts grounds, right after big man Albus bit the dust. Harry calls Snape a coward, and then Snape explodes on him (or at least he does in the book.)


Of course, Snape just executed an act of immense bravery, and made a choice that you could probably define as the exact opposite of cowardly. Had Snape not revealed what he revealed to Harry in the pensieve, Harry never would’ve known much of anything about Severus.

3. If You Talk In A Slow Drawl, You Might As Well Wear All Black And Teach In A Dungeon

Couldn’t not mention this. Great #personalbranding move by Snape.

4. If You’re Playing A Role Worth Playing, You Need To Fully Commit To That Character

Daniel Day-Lewis is widely considered one of the best, if not the best actor on the planet. To prepare for his roles, Daniel Day-Lewis, a method actor, turns into the crazy people he plays — Bill the Butcher, Daniel Planview, etc. Honestly, it’s pretty amazing he’s not in jail.

In the movie, Snape pulled off a performance that puts great undercover feats (like that of Billy Costigan) to shame. Snape’s turn was as powerful as it was because JK Rowling crafted Snape in a way that he just as easily could be evil. In fact, none of us would probably have been surprised if Snape turned out to just be pure evil. He was just so good at it.

5. Undying Love Is A Huge Deal

We all know this. But MAN does Snape reinforce this better than almost any character in all of literature.

6. The Most Innocuous Statements Are Sometimes The Most Loaded Statements

As Ella Ceron points out in the impressive located northwest of this text, the first time Snape talks to Harry he basically says “I bitterly regret Lily’s Death.”

Of course Harry Potter is a work of literature and not your friend who got really drunk last night, but just goes to show you that some statements pack more punch that you may initially think.

7. If You Have A Very Important Secret You Need To Tell Someone Right Before You Die, It’s Best To Be A Fictional Character In A Movie Or Book

This probably a better strategy than simply existing in real life, and hoping something convenient happens. By ensuring that you are in fact integral component to the overall plot of a widely celebrated book series, you also (usually) ensure the revelation of that secret.

8. Nobody’s Perfect

Except Dumbledore. And Stubby Boardman.