What’s your favorite part of “Harry Potter”? Heroism? The ancient struggle between good and evil? Mystery? Emma Watson, you say?
Wrong. The best part of “Harry Potter” is the cats.
6. Millicent Bulstrode’s cat – Before the pangs of adolescence and Horcruxes struck the trio, they had to contend with a case of mistaken cat-dentity. Under the impression that she had collected the hair of this female Slytherin student, Hermione instead concocted a Polyjuice potion containing the hair of Millicent’s cat––and temporarily turned herself into a cat-human hybrid.
5. Mrs. Norris – The caretaker Filch’s skeletal gray cat slunk around the castle for seven books. Besides shooting sly glares at misbehaving students, her most exciting adventure was getting petrified by the basilisk.
4. Mrs. Figg’s cats – Though a Squib, Mrs. Figg kept in touch with the magical community by breeding Kneazles––magical cat-like creatures with high intelligence and the ability to discern suspicious occurrences. Mr. Tibbles alerted his owner to Dudley and Harry’s dementor attack, and Snowy, Tufty, and Mr. Paws rounded out the veritable cat menagerie.
3. Dolores Umbridge – Besides having a Persian cat as her Patronus, the toad-like professor and Ministry of Magic employee also decorated her office with ornamental plates, each depicting a kitten with a bow around its neck. Described as garish and horrible, I’ll admit––despite my own love of felines––that these cats were as rotten as Umbridge herself.
2. Crookshanks – “It was either a very big cat or quite a small tiger,” Harry remarked the first time he met Hermione’s squashed-faced, bowlegged ginger cat Crookshanks. Half-Kneazle, he was intelligent, rambunctious, and the perfect companion for a night by the fire in the Gryffindor common room. I was pretty jealous.
1. Minerva McGonagall – It was a close tie, but McGonagall as a silver tabby Animagus narrowly beat out Crookshanks as my all-time favorite Potter cat.
––Leanna B. Ehrlich is the incoming books executive. Her kitten is named Minerva.