Tom Felton doesn’t think Draco Malfoy would make a very good boyfriend, and he’s probably right. Yet Harry Potter fans continue to be obsessed with him.
J.K. Rowling has stated many times that she is utterly flabbergasted by fans’, um, let’s say intense love of Draco Malfoy.
Draco, chief bully of Harry Potter and all-round awful person, has been the subject of many a teen girl fantasy and works of fanfiction — indeed, Cassandra Clare’s The Mortal Instruments character Jace is based on Draco.
And the casting of teen heartthrob Tom Felton certainly did not deter from his appeal.
When a fan tweeted Tom Felton a picture of her “Draco Malfoy is my boyfriend” t-shirt (you can get your very own right here, because we know you want to), Felton replied:
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— Tom Felton (@TomFelton) August 21, 2015
Rowling, Twitter queen that she is, jumped on the topic immediately:
I don't blame you, Tom. * * I do blame Tom. https://t.co/9cM0CaZpn4
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) August 21, 2015
Tom Felton certainly brought a certain je-ne-sais-quoi (just kidding, we totally know quoi) to the role.
Especially in Half-Blood Prince, Felton’s performance screamed of vulnerability, which is so key to the likability of would-be bad guys.
However, Rowling shouldn’t underestimate the power of the bad boy archetype the literary character already embodied.
Everyone likes a potentially redemptive villain, and right from the get-go, Draco was set up for redemption (even if he never really got it).
Draco may have been a bully, but it was his father who made him that way. His haughtiness and prejudice made him unlikable, sure, but he was 11! If the story had gone a different way, as some fans hoped, Draco could have easily ended up fighting on the good side by the seventh book.
Even though he wouldn’t make as dramatic of a shift (at least he distanced himself somewhat from Lucius by the end of the story, and ended on shakily civil terms with Harry), the smarmy, self-centered and self-confident antagonist he appeared to be throughout most of the series still holds a certain appeal. After all, even Lord Voldemort had fangirls (read: Bellatrix).
Do you think Draco Malfoy’s appeal can be attributed Tom Felton’s charisma, or did the love for the character come from J.K. Rowling’s writing?