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The Harry Potter Couple That Still Confuses Fans

There is nothing more dangerous than being an adolescent, and that seems to be one of the driving forces behind the immensely popular fantasy franchise "Harry Potter." Harry's (Daniel Radcliffe) tussle with the forces of darkness and title of "The Chosen One" sometimes makes it easy to forget that he is just a child. While The Boy Who Lived avoids getting murdered every year, he also contends with conflicts that every person must come to terms with. Grades, friends, and — of course — romance. In a series largely taking place in high school, is there anything more significant?

The characters in "Harry Potter" have a long history of drama and broken hearts, and not everyone agrees on who the ultimate couples are. Ron (Rupert Grint) and Hermione (Emma Watson) have been the subject of theories for years in addition to unlikely romantic pairings that divide fans of "Harry Potter." But one of the couples that fans seem to have the most trouble with is one that barely gets any screen time at all.

Tonks and Lupin don't make a lot of sense to fans

In a rich world full of complex characters and many moving parts, not all storylines can be serviced to the satisfaction of the viewers. The tumultuous dynamic between Ron and Hermione is thoroughly explored, but the same cannot be said for some of the adult couples. During "The Half-Blood Prince," many fans were shocked to discover that Lupin (David Thewlis) and Tonks (Natalia Tena) fell in love suddenly, with barely any previous interactions.

"I never understood the relationship between Remus and Tonks," remarked u/Roozyj. "It comes completely out of nowhere, we never see them flirt before they get together." When Harry first sees the couple, they are surprisingly committed to one another. Tonks supports Lupin's werewolfism, having insider knowledge about how difficult the transition is for him. Though they hold hands from time to time, there is no further explanation about how and when the couple got together. Fans across the board found the relationship underwhelming.

"I like both Lupin and Tonks as stand-alone characters, but to me their relationship just didn't add anything whatsoever to the story," Redditor u/SeahorseLoverab noted. Their screen time is so sparse, it makes one wonder why this relationship is featured at all. In addition to the throwaway line about their new relationship, Tonks and Lupin go on to have fleeting scenes that include a pregnancy and an eventual death that is only briefly touched upon, making the relationship feel hollow.

Lupin has a deeper connection with someone else

Discourse has surrounded the romantic entanglements of Remus Lupin since the books were released, but not because of Tonks. Though the eventual spouses have things in common such as the Order of the Phoenix, their connection pales in comparison to the real love of Lupin's life: Sirius Black (Gary Oldman). For years, young fans connected with the clear subtext between Sirius and Lupin. Starting as schoolyard chums, the two friends find that they have much in common when they reach adulthood. Both have the power to turn into canine animals, and both are maligned for their history — Sirius for his alleged betrayal of Harry's parents and Lupin for his werewolfism. It doesn't help that J.K. Rowling wrote their interactions with intimate prose, as Frankie Thomas for The Paris Review noted.

David Thewlis and Oldman play them not just as old friends but something far closer. They share a love for Harry and become surrogate fathers to him. Not to mention that Lupin's werewolfism was also deeply queer coded. Rowling herself said that tragic details about Lupin were meant to be metaphorical of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the prejudice that went along with it (via the Evening Standard). But Rowling's post on Pottermore insisted that Lupin only ever loved Tonks, which some fans felt was a betrayal.

Tonks' genderfluidity was disregarded

When first introduced in "Order of the Phoenix," there is one Auror who stands out among the rest. Unlike her coworkers, Tonks is loud, impulsive, and clumsy. But she is also an authentic character who connects with audiences for a different reason. Tonks makes a point to avoid being called by her given name. She dislikes her first name, Nymphadora, instead preferring to be called by her last name. Her status as a metamorphmagus also gives credence to being gender fluid. She has the ability to shapeshift, instead preferring to turn her face into the likeness of animals. If there were two characters who seemed the least likely to get together, it would be Lupin and Tonks.

Aja Romano for Vox pointed out how Tonks' character is specifically sacrificed in later films in order for her to be an acceptable partner for Lupin. She no longer goes for her brightly styled hair, instead opting for a more feminine depiction of the character. Rowling's controversial opinions on gender have been exhaustively documented at this point, and some have connected it to this character turn for Tonks. Though fans of Romano identify as queer and found gratification in feeling represented, this was all taken away by forcing a couple that many believe never should have been together.