(Beware: Ahead spoilers be!)
Ladies and gents, it’s honesty hour. I am a fraud of a Potterhead. Dobby forgive me, I watched the movies before I read the books. In fact, I did not see the light until very late, like Deathly Hallows Part I late.
Do not judge me. I did not endure the heartbreak that was the Battle of the Department of Mysteries for you to judge me.
A great part of the allure of the world of Harry Potter is its mystical, majestic and sometimes menacing creatures. Dame J.K. Rowling painted vivid images of creatures like the grindylows and their fellow lake dwellers the merpeople. The books’ illustrations gave us just a glimpse into the magnificence of her creations.
Then came the films. For the faithful who properly read before they watch (once again don’t judge me), seeing the McGonagall’s animagus transformation and the unintentionally dangerous Dobby for the first time was the culmination for years of hopes and dreams.
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And in true Potterhead fashion, we clamored for more information. Harry Potter: The Creature Vault: The Creatures and Plants of the Harry Potter Films by Judy Revenson (Harper Design, 2014) does right by us Potterheads. We get book illustrations, concept drawings and bits of trivia on how our favorite creatures came to life. We also get a true, behind-the-scenes views of how creatures of near human intelligence (like centaurs), Luna’s delightfully delectable dirigible plums, and the irritable Hungarian Horntail made the transition to the big screen.
The bit about the trouble with Professor Remus Lupin’s on-screen transformation was my fave. Dobby fans like me will squeal as we are taken through the process from conception to the final form that swung from a chandelier above Bellatrix’s head. However, not everything is cute and cuddly. Does anyone remember under the influence of the polyjuice potion Nagini in Godric’s Hollow? Enough said.
I’m getting a feeling. Something from the beyond is telling me that you don’t believe me about the epic-ness that is The Creature Vault. (Professor Sybil Trelawney would be proud.) Well, take a look below and decide.