Of all Harry Potter franchise, it seems Dumbledore is making his worst decisions in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – starting with the decision to allow Harry to compete in the tournament! This decision often seems incomprehensible – after creating Age Line himself, and with as much power as he had, Dumbledore could probably have simply let Harry off the hook somehow … but he actually allowed him to compete!
Aside from this particularly bad decision, however, Dumbledore remains the wise, old leader that fans are used to in this part of Harry Potter franchise. He makes some excellent decisions throughout this school year – even if not everyone has had excellent results, and if some did not reach from the books to the movies.
5 Hosted the Tri-Wizard Tournament
Although this apparently went horribly wrong, leading to Cedric Diggory’s death and Voldemort’s return, Dumbledore’s initial decision to host the Triwizard Tournament was a good one. The intent of the tournament was to create magical collaboration, and that is certainly a positive concept, especially when Dumbledore is aware that Voldemort may very well return.
It also works to some degree. Fleur and Bill meet through the tournament, marry later and become important members of the Order of the Phoenix. Krum also makes connections with Hermione, and it is because he is at Fleur and Bill’s wedding that the Golden Trio is able to find out the story of the Deathly Hallows.
4 Hiring Dobby and Winky at Hogwarts
Unfortunately, this story arc did not come from the books to the movies, but in the original series, Dumbledore hires these house elves in the Hogwarts kitchens. Dobby is, of course, a fan favorite in both books and movies, but Winky is only found in the books where she is the disgraced Husalf for the Crouch family.
Hiring these elves was a big decision by Dumbledore for more than one reason. First, it provides an excellent place for the house elves that no one else would have taken in – Dobby because he wanted pay, and Winky because she was in disgrace (and increasingly spent her time drunk). For another, however, it keeps an ally close to Dobby and a potential informant close to Winky.
3 Hiring Mad-Eye Moody
It certainly did not go well in the end, for the real Mad-Eye had been attacked and kidnapped by Barty, who took his place. However, Dumbledore did not know this (and could not be blamed for not knowing it as Barty was extremely convincing!) And this would have been an excellent choice if it has been the real crazy eye as a professor!
Moody is a unique Auror, a friend of Dumbledore and a loyal member of the Order, so he was a great choice as a teacher in defense of dark art. In fact, it would have been a good concept from the start to have a retired Auror as a professor – and Dumbledore can not be blamed for making a bad choice on this one.
2 Gives Barty Veritaserum
Eventually, Dumbledore finally realized that Mad-Eye was not Mad-Eye when he finally took Harry away from Dumbledore – and he was quick to act on it. Veritas rooms are not a drink that any wizard would use lightly (unless they were a dark wizard, that is), so it was probably not an easy choice for Dumbledore to force it on anyone.
But his decision to do so is what brought forth all the answers they needed about what happened, why Barty was there, and what Voldemort was doing. This allowed Dumbledore to back up his claims – and had Barty not been alone with a dementor, it would also have been enough to convince the ministry of Voldemort’s return!
1 Announces Voldemort’s return
When Harry returned and revealed that Voldemort was back, Dumbledore was the first person to publicly support him – despite the fact that this actually worked against him in so many ways, leading to his big break with the ministry. Dumbledore, however, stood firm and refused to turn to Harry or suggest that there might be a mistake.
This was a strong decision for so many reasons – starting with the fact that it was simply the right thing to do! But beyond that, it’s this that really cemented the relationship between Harry and Dumbledore, which led to Harry’s ultimate loyalty and his willingness to sacrifice himself for what Dumbledore wanted.
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