Tiny Blink-and-Miss Harry Potter Detail Revealed Snape’s True Loyalties Early On

Tiny Blink-and-Miss Harry Potter Detail Revealed Snape’s True Loyalties Early On
Image credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

This unlikely blink-and-you’ll-miss-it detail in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows revealed that Snape was a G long before the dramatic Pensieve revelation scene.


  • After Dumbledore’s death and before the Pensieve revelation, both Harry and fans were supposed to believe Severus Snape was on Voldemort’s side.
  • In The Deathly Hallows movie, McGonagall initiates a duel with Snape, and his reaction gives a much earlier hint at Snape’s actual loyalties.
  • Instead of attacking back, Snape redirects McGonagall’s spell so that it takes out other Death Eaters and then leaves the scene to avoid casualties.

Severus Snape has been the most ambiguous Harry Potter character throughout the entire series — especially, on your first readthrough or watchthrough. On the one hand, Albus Dumbledore was adamant about trusting the Potion Master; on the other hand, Snape induced no sympathy in anyone with his terrible attitude toward students and the shady business he seemed to always have going on.

The ultimate revelation came late into Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, but the most attentive fans could learn about Snape’s true loyalties much earlier.

Snape Was a Deliberate Villain in Deathly Hallows

After the back-and-forth for six installments, the guesswork about Severus Snape’s true colors seemingly came to a close in The Half-Blood Prince: after the Potion Master killed Dumbledore, the situation appeared crystal-clear.

Tiny Blink-and-Miss Harry Potter Detail Revealed Snape’s True Loyalties Early On - image 1

In The Deathly Hallows, both the Golden Trio and fans back home were supposed to see Snape as their enemy and hate him — and boy did we hate him the first time around.

For all we know, Snape killed Dumbledore, brought Death Eaters into Hogwarts, and supported Carrows’ reign of terror that included torturing little children, for instance. There was next to no reason for us (or Harry) to believe the Potion Master was actually on the good side all along… Except there was one tiny telltale sign.

Snape Showed His True Colors Earlier Than Needed

We are supposed to only learn the truth about Snape’s loyalties when we watch his memories in the Pensieve. But one blink-and-you’ll-miss-it scene revealed the truth earlier in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: after the Golden Trio returned to Hogwarts and Minerva McGonagall initiated a public duel with Severus Snape.

McGonagall didn’t hold back. She was protecting her students and believed Snape to be a villain, so she attacked him with full force. But the Potion Master not only chose to merely deflect her spells — he also used them to take out the Carrows!

If you watch the duel scene closely, Snape split McGonagall’s spell into two and redirected it in such a way that both the Death Eaters who were standing behind him went down in an instant. Only after that, the Potion Master chose to exit the duel and retreat, once again, avoiding any potential damage to the students.

If you caught that tiny split-second detail on your first watchthrough, you definitely knew that Snape wasn’t the traitor we were supposed to believe he was!

Have you ever noticed Snape’s move?