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The Unlikely Romantic Pairing That Has Harry Potter Fans So Divided

When "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" first reached bookshelves in 1998, few could have foreseen the ways in which a fantasy story geared toward children would alter the media landscape. Decades later, the wizarding series has left an indelible mark in both literature and film, effectively reworking the ways in which viewers consume young adult content (via Vox). Along with launching the careers of its cinematic counterparts, the "Harry Potter" franchise has also provided a haven for its book fans, who remain invested in the lives of the main protagonists both within and outside its pages.

Even though the last book installment hit stores in 2007 -– and the final film screened in 2011 –- many readers still debate the legitimacy of the romantic pairings in the series. Famously, the will-they-or-won't-they pull between Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger delighted some fans (via Hypable), while others questioned whether or not they were truly meant to be together (via Bustle).

For some Potterheads, Harry's love interests are also hotly contested. After pining for his fellow student, Cho Chang, throughout "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire," the young wizard eventually takes Parvati Patil to the Yule Ball. In the following book, Harry and Cho finally give their relationship a chance -– only for it to dramatically disintegrate due to a series of miscommunications. Notably, Harry ultimately falls in love with Ron's younger sister, Ginny, and the couple tie the knot in adulthood. However, there is one character that a few readers believe was Harry's true soulmate.

Harry and Luna Lovegood have an unexpected connection

In the film adaptation of "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," Ravenclaw student Luna Lovegood makes a memorable entrance when she first meets Harry on the way to Hogwarts at the beginning of the school year. While preparing to ride a carriage, Harry notices skeletal creatures known as "thestrals" for the very first time. When he realizes that his peers cannot see the haunting animals, he worries that he is hallucinating. Kindly, Luna explains to Harry that only humans who have witnessed death can see thestrals. She comfortingly tells him, "You are as sane as I am." In this moment, Harry and Luna forge a unique bond, one that recognizes their shared grief and loss.

While Harry occasionally worries that Luna is a bit too strange for him, he eventually comes to appreciate her warmth and nonjudgmental demeanor. Ostracized by most of the other fifth-year students, Harry finds an ally in Luna and later defends her from the mean-spirited taunts of their fellow peers, who often call her "Loony Lovegood." While Harry initially struggles with a sense of alienation, he slowly comes to peace with his experiences because of Luna, who values her own eccentricities. They are both outsiders who admire each other for who they are.

Moreover, throughout the franchise, Luna proves her unerring loyalty and strength. When others question Harry's assertion that Voldemort is back, Luna believes him immediately. Later, she joins Harry and his friends when they battle Deatheaters at The Ministry and also enlists in the underground rebellion Dumbledore's Army. Over and over again, Harry and Luna come to rely on each other and build each other up.

Some fans think Luna Lovegood should have been Harry's one true love

On Reddit, u/Wise-wolf95 posted, "Unpopular opinion: Luna Lovegood and Harry Potter would've made a great couple. Think about how they bonded in OOTP and how she was the only one who believed that Harry was innocent and wasn't even his friend."

In response, some users disagreed with the statement, citing irreconcilable differences between Luna and Harry's personalities and overall life goals. As u/Finklemaier argued, "Harry would not be interested in Luna on a romantic level because she personifies the awkwardness that he feels every day because of who he is. He wants to belong, but more importantly, he wants to be normal." At the same time, the user acknowledged why a pairing like Luna and Harry would be desirable, adding that the shared strangeness between them is certainly the sort of thing that compels a reader (or viewer) to want them together, but that Harry's characterization makes it unlikely that he would ever feel an attraction to her. U/bigmanoncampus seconded the analysis above, noting that Harry is constantly trying not to be noticed for the qualities that inherently make him stand out, while Luna embraces her eccentricities. 

However, other fans pointed out that Luna and Harry's connection could have run deeper than most would expect, and defied the more conventional (and arguably, less narratively interesting) pairing he eventually opts for with Ginny. One fan, u/CatwickBosecat said, "I love to imagine a world in which Harry and Luna end up together and she encourages him to become a [Defense Against the Dark Arts] professor at Hogwarts."

When it comes to matters of the heart, particularly within the universe of "Harry Potter," it appears that anything is fair game.