Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Dreadful dinner guests

On the eve of Thanksgiving, as you head to large gatherings of family and friends... be thankful that you will not have to share the dinner table with unsavory fictional characters.

I recently conducted a poll asking which Harry Potter characters would you NOT like to have dinner with. I predicted that it would be a tight three way race between Umbridge, Bellatrix and Lord Voldemort (none of which strike me as enjoyable dinner companions).

I couldn't have been more wrong. Bellatrix and Umbridge tied for third, and Voldemort came in a surprising fourth. The winner? Aragog the monstrous spider, followed closely by bloodthirsty werewolf Fenrir Grayback. Apparently, readers of Wizards Wireless do not want to be turned into entrees (and you can't really blame them.)

Interesting results:
Peter Pettigrew got the same number of votes as Marvolo Gaunt, Morphin Gaunt, Grawp, Bellatrix and Umbridge. I agree that he's not my favorite character by any means, but I was impressed that he ranked that high (he got more votes than Voldemort).

Voldemort and Percy Weasley got the same number of votes. I thought that was astonishing. True, Percy can be a bit pompous and annoying, but he'd be far less likely to kill you because you didn't season the turkey properly.

Grawp, who started with a strong lead, finished in third place.

Severus Snape only got one vote. That was surprising... he doesn't seem like an ideal dinner companion to me. It would be rather difficult to engage him in small talk.

The Giant Squid (who I put in as a joke) got three votes! Very impressive.

Here's the poll results:

Question: Which Harry Potter characters would you NOT like to have dinner with?

In first place: Aragog

2nd place: Fenrir Grayback

3rd place: Marvolo Gaunt, Morphin Gaunt, Grawp, Bellatrix Lestrange, Peter Pettigrew and Dolores Umbridge

4th place: Mundungus Fletcher, Gregory Goyle, Percy Weasley and Lord Voldemort

5th place: Amycus Carrow, Alecto Carrow, Vincent Crabbe, Barty Crouch Jr., Barty Crouch Sr., Dudley Dursley, Petunia Dursley, Vernon Dursley, Cornelius Fudge, Igor Karkaroff, the Giant Squid and Yaxley

6th place: Ludo Bagman, Merope Gaunt, Griphook, Kreacher, Draco Malfoy, Lucius Malfoy, Auntie Muriel, Rufus Scrimgeour, Horace Slughorn, and Sybil Trelawney.

7th place: Fleur Delacour, Xenophilius Lovegood, Narcissa Malfoy, Mad Eye Moody, Mr. Ollivander and Severus Snape

In 8th and last place (with no votes): Viktor Krum and Oliver Wood

See my new poll about how many times you've read the Harry Potter books. If you're a regular reader of Wizards Wireless, you can probably guess my answer, which is: so many times that I'm embarrassed to admit how high the number is. Actually, by this point, it's so many times that, honestly, I've lost count.


  1. Very interesting.

    My first thought as I looked at group 7 was that I wouldn't mind having dinner with Phlem at all! Not only because of her beauty, but she's a pretty decent sort it seems to me. And, being subject to womanly bewitchment or the muggle variety, I'd be curious to experience the effect of her Veela charms. Of course, I'm sure I would keep my head! I'm a grown man and not adolescent like Ron!

    Another question to ponder is, "What would it be like to dine with each group?" I think number 7 would be very entertaining, as would 6. Not pleasant, but interesting for sure.

  2. Brian-
    Good point. Fleur really isn't so bad... I think she even comes off quite well in the 7th book. I'd be fine having dinner with her.

    I like your idea about dining with the groups as a whole. I think the worst combination would have to be Group 3. Having Marvolo and Morphin Gaunt, Grawp, Bellatrix, Umbridge and Petter Pettigrew at the same table would be very unpleasant. Even clever seating arrangements wouldn't be any help.

    And Brian, having had dinner with you at the Kidlitosphere conference, I can say that you're definitely not a dreadful dinner guest. =)