Fans around the world mourned when Alan Rickman, an English actor and director, passed away on January 14th, 2016 due to pancreatic cancer. The actor was well-known for his roles in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Die Hard and of course, the Harry Potter series. It’s widely agreed upon that no other actor could have done a better job at portraying the seemingly cold, complex character that was Professor Severus Snape. At the beginning of the Harry Potter series, we all loathed the Professor for his condescending comments made to Harry but as the series progressed, Snape was seen as a true hero. He added a layer to the film which made it so much more exciting and heartbreaking. Who could forget his snarky quotes and deep glare? As a tribute to the great Alan Rickman, here are the top 15 Best Severus Snape moments.
15. His Dramatic Pauses
No one did a dramatic pause better than Snape. One of his most memorable pauses came in Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone, when he caught our favorite trio whispering about the forbidden trapdoor that Fluffy was guarding. His exact words were, “You ought to be careful. People will think you’re…up to something.” His intense execution of the line was enough to make anyone shudder. You can relive the moment again and again by watching this exaggerated video. Another memorable scene was the speech that Snape gave an assembly at the Great Hall during Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2.
14. Admitting that He Was the Half-Blood Prince
When Harry finds a textbook marked with the words “Property of the Half-Blood Prince,” he begins to excel at Potions. The Half-Blood Prince sure knew what he was doing, he had made amendments to some of the recipes in the book and even scribbled down a few spells he invented himself. But, it wasn’t until Harry came face-to-face with Snape and tried to attack him, did he find out that Snape was the Half-Blood Prince. Harry tried using a spell found in the book, which Snape deflected and admitted that it was he who invented that spell. This showed that, even at a young age, Snape was immensely talented.
13. His Death
Snape’s death made us all cry. A few movies earlier, no one could have seen that reaction coming. Snape suddenly became a tragic hero; some could argue that he was the biggest hero of the Harry Potter series. When Snape was dying, the look on his face was agonizing. Yet, as the tears rolled down his eyes, he thought of Lily and her son. Instead of letting go at that moment, and leaving Harry clueless about some of the most important events in his life, Snape encouraged Harry to collect his tears and go to the Pensieve so that he could view the memories of his life and understand why things happened the way they did. He also told Harry the one thing he had heard the most about himself, “You have your mother’s eyes,” but made it so much more meaningful. It was that particular reminder of Lily that drove Snape to make all the sacrifices he did, out of his love for her.
12. His Introduction in Harry’s First Potions Class
Snape made an impression as the strict professor when he barged through the doors to teach the newest witches and wizards at Hogwarts their first potions class. In his introductory speech, he said “I can teach you how to bewitch the mind and ensnare the senses. I can tell you how to bottle fame, brew glory, and even put a stopper in death.” He then notices Harry scribbling and raises his voice, “Then again, maybe some of you have come to Hogwarts in possession of abilities so formidable that you feel confident enough to not pay attention!” He proceeds to bombard Harry with questions which he couldn’t answer and ends with “Pity. Clearly, fame isn’t everything, is it Mr. Potter?”
11. When Snape Confronted Quirrell
If you hadn’t read the Harry Potter books but went to see Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, you were probably thinking, “Snape is evil” throughout the entire movie. Much of Snape’s behavior towards our favorite trio suggested that he was the one that was after the Sorcerer’s Stone. Harry’s suspicions grew when he noticed that Snape shortly disappeared and returned with a limp while the troll had invaded Hogwarts. Harry believed that Snape let the troll in to distract everyone while he attempted to get past Fluffy, the three-headed dog guarding the stone. Furthermore, he overheard Snape as he confronted Quirrell about his progress. However, we later found out that Snape had been appointed by Dumbledore to keep an eye on Quirrell, which explains why he disappeared when the troll invaded (as he feared it was a diversion). Quirrell even admitted that Snape was trying to save, not harm, Harry by muttering a counter to the jinx Quirrell had put on his broomstick during a Quidditch match. This completely confused movie watchers but was a just a glimpse into the amazing character that was Snape.
10. When He Kills Dumbledore
The moment that Snape killed Dumbledore was a defining scene in Harry Potter. It showed the sacrifices that Snape had to make for the greater good of the Wizarding World. Snape, of course, was a double agent and in order to appear loyal to Voldemort , he had to commit the ultimate act. He admired Dumbledore and remained incredibly loyal to him, so much so that he put himself in danger for him and stuck to the plan that they had. This brilliant plan was that Snape would be the one to kill Dumbledore, who was dying anyway, to appear as though he were still on Voldemort’s side. This moment not only brought tears to our eyes, but made us realize just how brave Snape really was.
9. When He Broke Down Holding Lily
Other than disdain, Snape’s face rarely showed his true emotions. One of the major exceptions was this heartbreaking scene. After Snape passed away, Harry took his tears to the Penseive and saw Snape’s memory of the night Lily was killed. Harry was just a baby in the crib, and Snape was on the ground holding a deceased Lily, the witch he loved, who was killed by Voldemort. Tears streamed down Snape’s face and he looked so helpless that you could feel the pain that he felt in that moment. If that didn’t make you tear up a bit, then what will?
8. When He Called Out Hermione
Leave it to Snape to call people out and be as blunt as possible. In The Prisoner of Azkaban, Hermione is being her usual self by answering all of the Professor’s questions. However, Snape gets annoyed by this and calls her out, “That is the second time you have spoken out of turn, Miss Granger. Tell me, are you incapable of restraining yourself, or do you take pride in being an insufferable know-it-all?” Ouch.
7. His Words of Wisdom
Every great character in Harry Potter has shared some great words of wisdom that we can always recall in times of need. Snape seemed to reveal his greatness and teach us life lessons through his actions more so than his sayings, but he still had many moments. Even if it was the simplest of statements, they always rang true. For Snape, some of his realest quotes were in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix when he was helping Harry to learn how to block Voldemort from entering his mind. Snape criticized Harry for whining saying, “Well, it may have escaped your notice, but life isn’t fair.” This is a lesson we all must learn to accept eventually so that we can cope with tough situations. He also said to “control your emotions, discipline your mind.” This is one of the most powerful things you can do for yourself.
6. His Epic Duel With Lockhart
Lockhart was arguably one of the most annoying characters in the Harry Potter series, besides Umbridge. The conceited Professor started a dueling club and brought Snape in to demonstrate how to defend themselves. However, Snape managed to do what we all wanted to see by showing Lockhart up by doing a simple spell which sent him flying a few feet into a wall. Lockhart, with his pride, tried to shake it off but the students all saw right through this. You can watch the action here.
5. When He Shielded Harry, Ron and Hermione from a Transformed Lupin
In Prisoner of Azkaban, we all thought that Snape hated Harry, Ron and Hermione. After all, he had taken points from Gryfindor and almost took the Maurauder’s map from Harry, amongst countless other deeds. So, it may have been a bit confusing, perhaps even shocking, when he physically shielded them from danger. Lupin had transformed into an uncontrollable werewolf who would’ve had no trouble attacking the trio. Snape, however, stepped in front of them to protect them. This was one of the earliest clues about the truth.
4. When He Threatens to Expel Harry and Ron
Snape has a knack for making students shiver with fear. When he confronted Harry and Ron about using magic while underage to fly a car out for Muggles to see, everyone really thought that the boys would be expelled at that moment. The way he screams, “Silence!” would make anyone afraid of ever speaking again.
3. When He Lies To Umbridge
Umbridge, was without a doubt, one of the most evil characters in the Harry Potter series. She had cruel punishments and used the Veritaserum to force the truth of people. When she catches Harry at her fireplace trying to contact Sirius after having had a vision of him being tortured, she calls Snape in for help. However, Snape thankfully was brave enough to refuse to cooperate with her. He lies and says that she has used up all of the serum already and it takes a month to brew a new batch. A desperate Harry also mentions, “He’s got padfoot at the place where it’s hidden,” a code which Umbridge asked Snape to explain. Snape, however, says he has no idea what Harry is talking about. In doing so, Snape not only saved Harry, but all the students around him (including those that loathed him) and the truth about the Order of the Phoenix.
2. When He Makes a Smart Remark to Lupin
When Snape catches Harry wandering about, he throws in a few classic insults before discovering a mysterious parchment in Harry’s pocket. He orders Harry to read it out loud and to his dismay, the words poke fun at Snape’s “abnormally large nose.” Lupin then appears and Snape makes the witty remark, “Out for a little walk…in the moonlight, are we?” This is a pun, of course, which refers to the fact that Lupin was an animagus who could transform into a werewolf. At the time of this scene, Harry was unaware of this, which made the line that much more brilliant.
Quite possibly the most famous quote by Snape is a word that’s very simple yet so powerful and meaningful, “Always.” When Dumbledore reveals that a part of Voldemort’s soul is inside of Harry and suggests that Harry, too, must die, Snape seemed bewildered and was visibly upset. Dumbledore suggested that Snape cares for Harry, to which Snape simply responded by casting his Patronus, a doe just like Lily’s. His Patronus then flew out of the window of Dumbledore’s office and led Harry to the sword of Gryffindor. Upon seeing the Patronus, Dumbledore asked, “After all this time?” Snape, of course, replied with, “Always.” Now that’s true love.