The Harry Potter series is filled with many characters who Harry – and the reader – only ever spends a short amount of time with, but who you just know have their own stories that are just as fascinating as Harry’s. Hands up if you want an Arabella Figg spin-off series, for example.
Here are some of the characters who only ever made the occasional appearance, but who were complex, interesting, or downright wicked in their own right.
Michael Corner is best known for being one of Ginny’s early boyfriends. We don’t know a whole lot about Michael’s life, but what we do know about him proves that he’s a pretty stand-up dude – despite the fact that he gets sore about Gryffindor beating Ravenclaw in the Quidditch final.
Michael joined Dumbledore’s Army in his fifth year, and by the time Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows rolls around, the stout Ravenclaw student is one of the most involved members still remaining at Hogwarts.
When the Carrows imprison a first-year, Michael can’t stand by – and ends up being tortured after rescuing the younger student. Plus, in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007), he had charmingly floppy hair, which we would very much enjoy seeing more of.
Mrs Barty Crouch
Barty Crouch Sr and Barty Crouch Jr have huge roles in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, but Bartemius Crouch Jr's mother has died before the beginning of the novel.
She participated in one of the few escapes from Azkaban in the prison’s history, and died in Azkaban so that her son could be free. Her last days were spent surrounded by soul-sucking monsters, slowly being drained of all her joy and happy memories, simply because she loved her son and wanted him to be free. Her sacrifice is huge, and we always wondered what her life was like in happier times.
Ah, Lee Jordan. The tarantula-owning Quidditch-commentator extraordinaire who was just as witty as his two best friends, Fred and George.
Lee Jordan put his gift of the gab to good use during the Second Wizarding War, when he ran Potterwatch: a radio show devised to keep the public informed of Voldemort’s actions, and provide advice on how people could best protect themselves. While the media was being controlled by Death Eaters, Lee helped keep the rest of the wizarding community connected to each other when they needed it most. We would love to learn more about Lee's story.
Look, we’re not going to absolve Dudley of all the sins from his past. As a child, he was a spoiled bully who contributed to making Harry’s life at number four, Privet Drive a distinctly non-magical hell.
But given how pampered his upbringing was, it’s remarkable that Dudley grows up into a halfway decent human being at all. His rogue moment of compassion in Deathly Hallows shocked us to the core, and we wonder what he was like after he'd grown up a bit.
You can read more about our defence of Dudley Dursley here.
While Neville’s grandmother Augusta Longbottom is initially known as a formidable figure feared by her grandson, it turns out that she’s not that scary after all.
Or rather, she is that scary... but only if you’re a punch-drunk John Dawlish who happens to underestimate the damage a more mature witch is capable of dishing out.
While Augusta Longbottom is strict with Neville, she eventually learns to be proud of her grandson and appreciate him for who he is. We are aching to know more about Augusta and the rest of the Longbottoms.
If you'd like to learn about more unsung heroes, check out our Unsung Heroes series.
Which character backstory are you dying to learn more about?