Hey everyone, Welcome to another installment of Harry Potter Theory. In today’s theory, we’re going to be discussing Peter Pettigrew AKA Wormtail. More specificall, we’re going to be discussing a popular fan theory in which he nearly became a professor at Hogwarts. Before we kick things off I want to say that I can’t take credit for this particular theory as it has been floating around the internet for a few years.
However, I did want to introduce it to you guys and let you know what I thought of it. It all starts with the Goblet of Fir, as this is the book in which Pettigrew would have become a professor. We all know that the Goblet of Fire was one of the more difficult books for Rowling to write. In fact, she has professed that it was the MOST difficult book for her to write.
It had a ton of information, a plethora of new characters, and it’s the second largest book after the Order of the Phoeni, so there was a lot of ground to cover. Not only that, but it was the book that required Rowling to do the most rewriting, as part way in to the story she realized that she had made a glaring error in need of rectification. “The first three books, my plan never failed me. But I should have put that plot under a microscope.
I wrote what I thought was half the book, and “Ack!” – huge gaping hole in the middle of the plot. I missed my deadline by two months. And the whole profile of the books got so much higher since the third book; there was an edge of external pressure. ” It turned out that Rowling’s big ‘glaring’ error in the plot of the Goblet of Fire was a Weasley character that wasn’t destined to stick around: “And what exactly was that gaping hole all about?” “I had to pull a character. There you go: “the phantom character of Harry Potter.
” She was a Weasley cousin. She served the same function that Rita Skeeter now serves. Rita was always going to be in the book, but I built her up, because I needed a kind of conduit for information outside the school.
Originally, this girl fulfilled this purpose. ” However, this wasn’t the only issue with the book or the only thing that Rowling had to rewrit, she even had a hard time getting a handle on the name of the new book: “The title thing was for a much more prosaic reason: I changed my mind twice on what it was. The working title had got out – 'Harry Potter and the Doomspell Tournament. ' Then I changed Doomspell to Triwizard Tournament.
Then I was teetering between Goblet of Fire and Triwizard Tournament. In the end, I preferred Goblet of Fire because it's got that kind of “cup of destiny” feel about it, which is the theme of the book. ” And Rowling openly admitted that she rather haphazardly dove in to the Goblet of Fire immediately after writing the Prisoner of Azkaba, which was one of the root causes of all of the issues that she was having. “Did I? Oh yes. .
. I repaired it! This is why Book 4 nearly caused me a nervous breakdown - because for the first time ever I lost my careful plot - which I've had since 1994, I think. I really should have gone through it with a fine toothcomb before I started writing and I didn't.
I had a false sense of security because all my other plans had held up so well. So I sailed straight into the writing of Four, having just finished Azkaban. All of this information is important because, in my eyes, it contributes to the validity of the fan theory that I’m about to dive in to. Goblet of Fire was the least ‘secure’ book during the phases in which it was written, which sort of leaves it open for greater interpretation.
The big fan theory is that none other than Peter Pettigre, Wormtail, was originally meant to impersonate Moody during the events of the Goblet of Fire, rather than Barty Crouch Jr. Crouch Jr did an excellent job at impersonating Moody, HOWEVE, we know that both Pettigrew and Barty Crouch jr were involved with capturing Moody in the first plac, so I can see just how easily this switch could have been made. Now, Peter Pettigrew certainly isn’t the most popular of characters-in fact, aside from Umbridge and a few awful others, he’s certainly one of the worst. But the theory highlights that Peter Pettigrew is a pretty important character to the story. He’s the one who betrayed the Potters-effectively allowing the events of the prophecy to transpir, he’s got a close connection/personal relationship with a multitude of characters, and he fought for both sides.
The primary argument for the theory is that Barty Crouch jr didn’t make much sense as an optio, and that Pettigrew’s character would have been better situated to have become the new DADA professor. One of the primary reasons highlighted is that out of nowhere a powerful dark wizard appears that is strong enough to fool Dumbledore, and convincing enough as Moody to trick the whole school and teach a course. But, where was this character before all of this happened? Suddenly introducing a new, powerful death eater foe and doing away with peter pettigrew seems almost counterintuitive, particularly as Pettigrew proves himself to be a worthy/capable wizard in this same boo, effectively returning Voldemort to his former glory by himself.
Not only that, but after Barty Crouch Jr’s time at the school is finished, and he’s caught, he’s basically just discarde, which is particularly strange. Almost all of the villains in Harry Potter are simply repurpose, they’re not introduced and then written off like Barty Crouch J, and this is where the inconsistency comes in. Voldemort always ends up coming back, Umbridge always seems to resurface, and Pettigrew always seem to escap, so how can this character who had fully entered the limelight just disappear? Effectively, what appears to have happened is that Rowling saw no further role in the narrative for Barty Crouch jr’s characte, and this, to me, suggests that his introduction to the book was an almost spur of the moment decisio, a way of filling a plot hole. I feel like she had plans to make Pettigrew the Defense Against the Dark Arts professor all along, but when she recognized a flaw in her pla, the fact that Pettigrew would have appeared on the Marauder’s Map, she acted hastily and had to invent this new wizard to replace him. If you think about it Pettigrew would have been the perfect person to impersonate Moody.
He helped the other Marauder’s create the Marauders map, so he knew the school schematic extremely well. Furthermore, he had spent time there in recent year, acting as Ron’s pet rat Scabbers during his formative years at Hogwarts. To add to that, he had spent so much time in close quarters with Harry that he would have known A LOT about hi, certainly enough to manipulate him and guide him through the tasks of the triwizard tournament. He knew Harry’s strengths, his weaknesses, and he would have been the perfect ‘undercover’ agen, particularly as he had so much experience deceiving people.
Pettigrew becoming the new DADA professor also would have been a nice addition to his character arc, as by doing so he would have showcased ‘brave’ qualities of a Gryffindo, the house to which he was sorted. In response to this theory, some fans have simply pointed out that, rather than creating a new character altogether (Crouch Jr)- they could have just had Pettigrew confiscate the map from Harry early o, preventing Harry from discovering his true identity. However, there are a few issues with this: First of all, Moody was trying to groom Harr, he was trying to get close to him, and I don’t think that Harry would have taken kindly to Moody IMMEDIATELY taking his ma, it would have hurt their relationship. Furthermore, Fake Moody only came in to possession of the map AFTER Harry had seen Crouches name on it, and at this stage there would have been little significance to the name ‘Barty Crouch’.
If we flip that, and Harry saw the name ‘Peter Pettigrew’, things would have certainly been shaken up. I think that this is a pretty solid theory, but one thing I want to add is that I’ve also seen this idea mentioned around the internet before, but not as a theor, as a way that the book genuinely could have gon, an admission from Rowling. I’m not sure if there is any validity to this or not, but I thought it was worth mentioning.