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The Great Hall Detail That Makes No Sense In The Harry Potter Movies

Nitpicking fantasy films such as Harry Potter is a difficult task. Using logic to criticize the functions of a fantasy world often does not work because it can always be explained through the supernatural. Still, it's fun to observe the background details in fantasy fiction, and there's one location in Harry Potter's fictional world that has a handful of them.

Hogwarts' Great Hall is an important setting throughout the series. Every movie begins with the characters traveling to Hogwarts and attending the feast. It's where new students are assigned houses. There are even scenes where students go there just to hang out. It's a central part of daily life for the characters in the series. But certain parts of it make no sense. In short, the Great Hall (and the feasts) should not work logistically for two very specific reasons. Like anything else, these problems could be excused with a magical explanation, but they still create confusing issues for Hogwarts' students.

How does every house have their own table that's equal to the others?

The Great Hall's perplexities begin with one of its simplest, yet most central elements: the tables. Specifically, how the tables are always the perfect size for the number of students in every house. Even if the tables magically grew and shrunk to fit the correct number, the size of the room still limits their maximum length.

They don't share tables, either. Students often wear their house colors during Hall scenes, and they tend to sit with their housemates, at least on special occasions. So, it can be assumed that during feasts everyone is supposed to sit at their house's table. At the end of the day, the room has to be built with that in mind.

But Hogwarts doesn't determine the number of students in every house. It depends on the student's individual personality. They can't predict the ratio of Hufflepuffs to Slytherins. What if there are more Slytherins than the whole room could house on one long table? Does the room magically get bigger? It's a complete miracle that everyone is seated so comfortably every year with no interruption. This is doubly true whenever they have guests. There was no explanation for where the guest schools sat during Goblet of Fire's Triwizard Tournament.

How do you reach your food during feasts?

The Great Hall's tables also cause another problem for feasting wizards. Putting aside the horrendous seating arrangement, the feasts make zero sense. Sure, Hogwarts' tables are long, but they aren't especially wide. Yet all the food dishes are lined up in a single row across the entire table. There's no way everyone can possibly reach everything. Some poor first year is going to get stuck between the green bean casserole and the brussels sprouts with no roast chicken or mashed potatoes in their immediate vicinity. It'll be the most disappointing magical feast of their life.

There aren't any obvious ways that Hogwarts students solve this problem. Food doesn't magically teleport around or float over students' heads. Nobody is passing the peas 14 spots down the line because Jimmy is a vegan and he's sandwiched between a ham and a turkey with no greens in sight. Somehow, everyone just happens to sit in front of their favorite meal no matter what. Whatever incantation there is to bypass the issues caused by this organizational mess isn't worth it when they could just get some shorter tables.