Easter Eggs are a nice item that gives fans a sneak peak of what’s coming next in a series. Many of them aren’t noticed until someone watches a movie or reads the books again and again, with hindsight truly providing 20-20 vision.
While many Easter Eggs provide clarity, hints to what the future holds for the fate of beloved characters, this isn’t always the case. Other Easter Eggs are misdirection, like dead ends in a maze. Then there are ones that are just placed as fine details or fun items for people to notice as they watch or read a series again.
The items hidden in plain sight within the Harry Potter books and movies are far too many to compile, but what about others that seemed really important at the time and went nowhere, or provided nothing more than a little bit of clarity or something to look back on after the fact, when we already knew all of the answers. Here are 20 Harry Potter Easter Eggs that, although a lot of fun, went nowhere.
20 Voldemort In The Paintings
The paintings hanging on the walls at Hogwarts are ever changing and filled with magic. It’s up for debate, but some say that there is a portrait featuring Voldemort that appears when the children are climbing up the stairs to their chambers during the Prisoner of Azkaban.
While this Easter egg may be real, it contains no real consequence (even though it would be the first time he shows up in his true form), because we don’t meet final form Voldemort until Harry squares off against him in the end of Goblet of Fire.
19 The Order Of Names On The Marauder's Map
The Marauder’s Map is a cool part of the Harry Potter world which allows the person holding it to see where everyone in Hogwarts is, and is particularly handy for sneaking around after curfew.
Invented by Remus, Peter, Sirius and James, eagle eyed fans noted that the positioning of the names on the map are the exact reverse order of the death of each character, with James dying when Harry is just an infant, Sirius in the Order of the Phoenix, and so on.
18 When Ron Predicts Who Killed Mona
Ron doesn’t often understand the weight of his words, and stumbles upon the right path. During Chambers of Secrets, when Ron discovers that Tom Riddle (who is later revealed to be a young Voldemort) won an award at Hogwarts, he jokes that the award must have been for killing Moaning Mona (since she’s so annoying).
We later find out that Tom is responsible for Mona’s death, although it’s of no consequence to the main story.
17 The Return Of The Chocolate Frog
When Harry first meets Ron while they’re on the train on the way to Hogwarts for the very first time, Harry purchases a chocolate frog. The frog quickly hops away and out the window of the train.
During the final movie, Deathly Hallows Part 2, a frog (presumably the same one) hops into the train where Ron, Harry, and Hermione’s children are going to their first year at Hogwarts, nicely bookending the series.
16 The Romantic Patronus Connection
The animal Patronuses of Harry Potter characters aren’t randomly selected, a lot of time and energy went into deciding who was what. Ron is a Jack Russell Terrier, a loyal animal – much is Ron a loyal friend to Harry (save for some teen angst in the later movies). Hermione is an Otter, an animal known to be chased by dogs, like her future husband Ron.
15 What Really Makes Harry's Scar Burn
It’s almost comical how the otherwise clever trio suspect Snape for everything bad, even though they are proven wrong time and time again. In the first movie, when Harry’s scar burns the children assume this is because of Snape, when it’s really because Professor Quarrel, who is hiding the face of Voldemort beneath his headdress, is facing Potter.
14 Dobby's Random Cameo
I’m sure this was put in just for fun, and most people missed it, but it’s fun either way. During the early part of the Goblet of Fire, Dobby and Winky (the house elves) go by in the background riding llamas. This cute, although pointless, cameo that you can barely see is proof that Dobby is enjoying his time as a free elf.
You’ll have to put the movie in slow motion to even see this cameo.
13 The Time Newt Visits Hogwarts
During Prisoner of Azkaban when Fred and George first give Harry the Marauder’s Map, there is an important name on it – Newt Scamander. This character from Fantastic Beasts was expelled from Hogwarts long before Harry arrived. Why he is there we don’t know and we never find out. Perhaps he was visiting Dumbledore or was there to help advocate to save Buckbeak, a cause that would be as important to Newt as it was to Ron, Harry, Hermione and Hagrid.
12 The Griffin 'Door'
Puns can be fun, even in the wizard world. There is a majestic griffin perched in front of Dumbledore’s office at Hogwarts. Dumbledore is the headmaster of Gryffindor, so it’s only fitting that the entrance to his quarters is literally a griffin door with the cheeky word play intended, groan. Cheesy, but fun!
11 Neville's Connection To Lord Of The Rings
Even though Neville Longbottom was the only one to pass out from the cries of the baby Mandrake in herbology class, he does move on to become a very talented herbologist. Neville’s name and eventual vocation has roots in J.R.R. Tolkien’s world.
In the Tolkien world of Lord of the Rings, the region of Longbottom is a famous shire renowned for growing plants. Likely this is a nod to an influence of Rowling when creating her own magical world.
10 Supporting Dragons Rights
Even though dragons aren’t real creatures, the creators of the Goblet of Fire thought it would be fun to put a little humour into the end credits of an otherwise dark movie with a sad ending. During the credits, if you look closely you can see that there is a message assuring viewers that, “No Dragons Were Harmed In The Making of This Movie”.
9 Harry's Quidditch Jersey
Seven is an important and powerful number in the world of Harry Potter, but it doesn’t really reveal anything key. Seven is the number on Potter’s Quidditch jersey, and it’s also his placement as a Horcrux, but it’s not the only use of the number seven.
Quidditch has seven players, there are seven books in the series (but eight movies), the Chamber of Secrets has seven snakes, and there are seven Weasley children. The list goes on, but without any real consequence beyond it being a prominent number.
8 The 'Secret' Code To Get Into The Ministry Of Magic
You’d think that there would be a top-secret code to get into the Ministry of Magic, but the password is something so simple that even a Muggle could figure it out. When Mr. Weasley takes Harry to the ministry and they use the visitor’s entrance, a traditional London telephone booth, he dials in 62442 - the letters on the phone spell out the word magic.
7 Wizard Breakfast Cereal
While many of the meals at Hogwarts are magical, some of them are ordinary ones to nourish the young minds and bodies of growing wizards. During the Order of the Phoenix you might have noticed boxed cereal that are reimagined brands like in the regular world.
If you’re hungry, instead of enjoying Cheerios, perhaps you could eat a bowl of Cheeri Owls instead.
6 Snape's Secret Potion Code
The first time we meet Professor Snape, we notice his surly and grumpy demeanor, but what we don’t notice is that he asks a coded riddle. During potions class he asks Harry, “What would I get if I added powdered root of asphodel to an infusion of wormwood?” The riddle involves Asphodel, which is a part of the Lily family (the name of Harry’s mom) and holds the meaning of regret following you until death.
Wormwood is said to symbolize bitter solo… fans have interpreted this to be the meaning behind what he first says to Harry, which is ‘I bitterly regret Lily’s death.’
5 Lovers On The Map
At the very end of Prisoner of Azkaban we are brought to the Marauder’s Map. The map shows a pair of entangled feet showing that, perhaps, two students (or professors, who knows?) are trying to enjoy a private romantic rendezvous that has been discovered by whomever is viewing the map.
4 Trelwaney Connecting Harry To Voldemort
While it may not seem like Professor Trelawney’s psychic powers are working, they are, just on a slightly off scale. In the third movie when she guesses that Harry’s birthday is in midwinter, she is wrong. That being said, Voldemort has a winter birthday and was born on December 31, 1926.
While this predicts the connection between the two, it’s something that no one would realize until the very last movie or book.
3 What 'I Open At The Close' Means
‘I open at the close’ is a clue given to Harry inside the snitch. This clue, given by Dumbledore, refers to ‘the close’ as the end of life. It ultimately helps Harry realize that he is the Horcrux and what he needs to do to defeat Voldemort.
What it also refers to is the timeline of the story. Harry defeats Voldemort in the year 1997, the same year as the very first book was released…so the first book opened at the completion of Harry’s life purpose.
2 Conductors Named After Important People To Rowling
If you write a book or book series it’s always nice to pay tribute to the important people in your life. JK Rowling did just that; she named the driver and conductors in her stories after her grandfathers.
Drivers and train conductors of note are named Ernest and Stanley after both her maternal (Stanley Volant) and paternal (Ernest Rowling) grandfathers.
1 The Enchanted Weasley Snowballs
This Easter egg was in the books, not the movies (unless there are some scenes that hit the cutting room floor that we didn’t hear about). In the very first book, Rowling wrote about the Weasley twins being punished for enchanting some snowballs so that they would follow Professor Quirrell around and hit him in the back of his head.
At the end of the movie, when it’s revealed that Voldemort was at the back of Quirrell’s head we realize that they have been hitting Voldemort in the back of the head with snowballs
Sources: Diply, Glamour, Tell Tales, She Knows