Following the surprise news that everyone's least favorite teacher at Hogwarts, Professor Dolores Umbridge, will be the subject of a new standalone "Harry Potter" story from J.K. Rowling next week, we're both excited and scared.
Of course, part of this excitement comes from the glimmer of hope that we'll hear more backstories from the "Potter" characters we've come to know and love (just gonna leave this here for Rowling to consider: Marauders-era prequel), but also from the rare opportunity to look inside the psyche of one of the bad guys. For all that Harry shared part of Voldemort's souldemort (uh, spoiler), we mostly got Harry's good-guy personality and intentions with a side of SHOUTY SHOUTY NO ONE'S LISTENING POOR HARRY.
With that in mind (but no Dark Lord actually in our minds, which is a disclaimer one needs to make while talking about "Harry Potter" stuff), here are the top six villains we'd like to hear more about.
1. Prof. Quirrell
All we know about this dude is that he had a severe speech impediment and an unfortunate case of Dark Lord Stuck To The Back Of My Head-itis. What of young Quirrell's asthmatic adventures around the world? Why did he decide to become a teacher? We bet he was a real ladies' man when he was just a tiny Quirrell.
2. Lucius Malfoy
At what point did he go from what we assume was a vaguely nasty adolescence to the furry hat-wearing, cobra cane-twirling presence we came to know? You don't just apparate out of the womb with the idea to distribute haunted diaries on the DL, you know.
3. Rita Skeeter
Come on, who doesn't want to hear about the journalism school adventures of our favorite unregistered Animagus? She's smart and devious, and we bet she'd have some wicked '70s Hogwarts stories to tell.
4. Dudley Dursley
Listen, the kid might be a spoiled dope, but even spoiled dopes have feelings. We only ever got an outside, fat-shaming perspective on Diddy Duddykins, but he clearly underwent an evolution from the kid who yelled at snakes to the young man who timidly shook Harry's hand on the event of his cousin's 17th birthday.
5. Peter Pettigrew
This is a little bit of self-torture, because we just want so badly to read a Marauders prequel. This one would totally hurt, because we know the big, bad outcome of it all, but how great would it be to see how Peter became Wormtail, plus a look into the teenage lives of Harry's parents? Bonus if we get a scene of Remus Lupin debating his mustache-related decisions.
6. Gregory Goyle
The life of a sidekick is not an easy one, but what's even harder is the life of a sidekick after the leader has bowed out and your fellow sidekick has died. Goyle was more muscle than actual evil, but wouldn't it be fascinating to hear about how he hooked up with Draco Malfoy and Vincent Crabbe in the first place, and what he did after their paths diverged? We'd totally read that.