Earlier this year, J.K. Rowling dropped a BOMB when she told Wonderland Magazine (in an interview conducted by Emma Watson) that Hermione should have ended up with Harry Potter instead of Ron. While it's impossible to imagine the series without the romance between Hermione and Ron, if taken from a completely realistic perspective, I can see how Ron wouldn't have been intellectually stimulating enough for the clever heroine. (Although if that's the case, Harry wouldn't have been a good fit either). Emma — who should know, having essentially lived the character for a decade of her life — put it thus, "I think there are fans out there who know that, too, and who wonder whether Ron would have really been able to make her happy." When I asked the cast about J.K. Rowling's comments, I especially loved the response from Evanna Lynch (who plays Luna Lovegood):
"With any relationship you can look back and say, 'Oh, I shouldn't have had that relationship; I shouldn't have been with that person.' But you were! It happened and it made them into who they are. So I think even if J.K. Rowling would feel a pull towards it, history is written. You can't change it. I think Ron and Hermione have something really beautiful and different. They're not a typical pairing, which I found more interesting."
One of my favorite things (of many) about the Harry Potter book and film series is that it's not a cheesy romantic story on the outside — hello mystery, adventure, and badass female heroines — but at the heart of it, it is a love story. There are various romantic pairings that slowly develop over the course of the series, and there is, of course, the love of Harry's mother that steers the entire plot. So using GIFs and quotes from the movies and books, I'm sharing 32 of the best love lessons J.K.'s series has taught us about the magic of love.
1. It's Really, Really Hard to Get Over Your First Love
"After all this time?"
"Always," said Snape.
2. If Someone's a Jerk, They're Probably Feeling Unloved
"Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living, and, above all, those who live without love."
3. Don't Be Too Quick to Dismiss "the Nice Guy" — He May Turn Out Like This
4. Being Ignored Is the Worst Form of Rejection
"Indifference and neglect often do much more damage than outright dislike."
5. There Really Is Someone For Everyone
6. Teenage Relationships Are Way Too Dramatic
"Oh, to be young and to feel love's keen sting."
7. Looks Aren't All That Matters
"What do I care how 'e looks? I am good-looking enough for both of us, I theenk! All these scars show is zat my husband is brave!"
8. You May Be Surprised at Who You Fall in Love With
"Differences of habit and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open."
9. First Kisses Are Awkward
"Well? How was it?"
"Wet. I mean, she was sort of crying."
"That bad at it, are you?"
10. Baby Talk Is Never OK
11. Jealousy Will Make You Imagine the Worst
And Will Eat You Up Inside
12. Don't Sell Yourself Short
"Tonks deserves somebody young and whole."
"But she wants you."
13. Don't. Get. Crazy.
14. Eating Ice Cream Sexually Isn't the Way to a Girl's Heart
15. It's OK to Choose to Be Single — in Fact, It's Pretty Badass
16. Hey, We've All Been the Third Wheel at Some Point
17. It's OK to Date the Hot Dumb Guy Every Once in Awhile
"Actually, we don't really talk at all. Viktor's more of a physical being . . . I just mean he's not particularly loquacious. Mostly, he watches me study. It's a bit annoying, actually."
18. When You're in Love With Your Best Friend, Sometimes It Works Out
19. You Never Know What Will Turn You On
20. Learn How to Get on Your Significant Other's Good Side After a Fight
"How long do you think she'll stay mad at me?"
"Just keep talking about that little ball of light touching your heart, and she'll come 'round."
21. Yes, It Is Possible to Have a Platonic Friend of the Opposite Sex
22. 'Tis Better to Have Loved and Lost . . .
"To have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever."
23. Go For It — Make the First Move
24. You Can't Fake True Love
"It is impossible to manufacture or imitate love."
25. Relationships Are Hard Work, but Don't Give Up!
"These girls, they're gonna kill me."
26. When We Like Someone, We're Guaranteed to Do Stupid Things
27. Making Out Is Really Fun; Also, Who Knew Zipping Up a Dress (or Tying Shoelaces) Could Be So Sexy?
"Then she was kissing him as she never kissed him before, and Harry was kissing her back, and it was a blissful oblivion, better than firewhiskey; she was the only real thing in the world, Ginny, the feel of her, one hand on her back, the other in her long sweet-smelling hair."
28. As Tempting as a Love Potion Is, a Real Relationship Is Based on Reality
29. You Can't Expect All Guys to Be as Emotionally Invested as You Are
"Just because you have the emotional range of a teaspoon doesn't mean we all have."
30. Look For the Signs That He Just Might Not Be Into You (It's Usually Pretty Obvious)
"I'd just been thinking, if you had died, you'd have been welcome to share my toilet."
31. Love Is Both Dangerous and Powerful
"When you have seen as much of life as I have, you will not underestimate the power of obsessive love."