JK Rowling's fantasy series remains one of the most popular franchises ever conceived. But it's not perfect, argues Bas Leijser. So what are the biggest plot holes in the Potterverse?
Every magic fight (books & movies).
What we got is this:
“Hey, let’s send just one spell at a time at my opponent at low velocity, I am sure he won’t dodge or block it”
While it should have looked a little like this:
Say you are a wizard. You probably know at least 100 spells. While some require precise wand movements and concentration, we never get an indication in the books that spells consume anything or quickly drain you of energy.
Ergo, there is no limit to casting them.
Advanced wizards can even cast spells without reciting them and there are countless examples throughout the books of how certain spells can be cast almost instantly.
So, in any magic fight, why would you hold back?
Instead of, say, sending an Expelliarmus at Dolohov, why not do the following in roughly 30 seconds? (aimed at different opponents)
While it is established in The Goblet of Fire that the Unforgiveable Curses require concentration and power (Mad-Eye Moody says: “you could all get your wands out now and point them at me and say the words, and I doubt I'd get so much as a nose bleed...”), this is not the case for most other spells.
Harry is exhausted after practicing Accio dozens/hundreds of times for his first trial in Goblet of Fire but that’s to be expected. There seems to be no other proof in the books of casting having these kind of limits.
Of course, wizards like Dumbledore could still keep a powerful shield charm up and block the entire barrage, but in a room full of people it would make more sense to cast as many spells as quickly as possible so you’re bound to hit someone.
It’s actually rather similar to combat in real-life. On a battlefield, you don’t lock yourself in a duel with one guy and send one bullet his way. No, you try to suppress the enemy or overwhelm them with superior force.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I do believe that the magic fights and duels we see in the books and movies are superior to these chaotic barrages (although I would have liked to see a slightly higher frequency of casting spells). However, what Rowling should have done is establish her magic system early on and impose some more limits to it. That’s the big error here.