Note: Contains major spoilers for Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald had a very complicated relationship. As we learned in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the pair were drawn to each other (and possibly fell in love) as young and unusually talented wizards.
While they don't come face-to-face in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, the new film does reveal a bit more about their relationship – but it also introduces what seems to be a significant plot hole.
As we understand it, their friendship came to an end after they got into a three-way duel with Albus' younger brother, Aberforth. The battle led to the apparently accidental death of their sister, Ariana Dumbledore. Grindelwald fled, and that was the end of that.
In Crimes of Grindelwald, it is revealed that Dumbledore can't become directly involved in the attempts to defuse the dark wizard's budding revolution due to a blood pact – apparently a variant of the Unbreakable Vow – that they made never to fight each other. This blood vow is symbolised by an artefact that Newt Scamander steals from Grindelwald. He gives it to Dumbledore, who says that he will attempt to break the vow.
But when was this vow supposed to have been made?
If it was before the duel that led to Ariana's death, then Grindelwald and Dumbledore would have died as soon as they raised their wands against each other. If after, are we expected to believe they stopped for a quick oath before Grindelwald fled in shame? Or was the three-way duel more of a two-way between goat-keeper Aberforth and super-wizard Grindelwald, with Albus and Ariana as concerned but inactive spectators? Seems unfair.
We're sure JK Rowling could come up with some explanation, but if it remains unaddressed, the end of Grindelwald and Dumbledore's relationship and the existence of the Unbreakable Vow would seem to be contradictory.
Your move, JK.
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is out now.
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