As a Harry Potter fandom lifer, seeing how weirdly connected fans are globally is its own kind of magic. Most Friday nights I'm too lazy to leave my couch, but thanks to the persistent nerdery of Harry Potter , I can see fan art from someone in Estonia and a fan theory from someone in Japan and a fanfiction from someone who secretly lives in my building all in the course of five minutes. There are very few phenomenons in the world so widely acknowledged and appreciated, that people who lead entirely different existences and have completely different world views are still connected at some strange and intimate level by their love for a bunch of people and a world that doesn't actually exist.
That being said, despite the universality of Harry Potter, there are for sure different types of fans throughout the fandom. Odds are you fit into more than one of these specific types, and odds are even higher that the "type" of Harry Potter fan you are has shifted over the last two decades. There is no shame in being any kind of Potterhead — seriously, the more the merrier — so if you see yourself in any of these fan types, MAD PROPS. You are living your best Potter life, no matter which one of these you are:
The Casual Fan
You read the books one time as a kid, and you think of them fondly. You're not really the type to reread books, since you'd rather read something you don't already know the ending to, but you'll watch the movies with friends if someone pops it on. A lot of the references are lost on you, but all the lessons you learned from the series will stick with you for life.
The Aggressive Fan Theorist
This person hasn't just read Harry Potter — they've read Harry Potter, and they've done it upwards of 17 times. These are the folk who are catching weird Easter eggs and lines in 2016 that the rest of our ordinary mortal brains could not fathom.
The Unabashed Geek Fan
You are the fan who keeps the lights on that Harry Potter cons worldwide. Your robes are not a "costume," they are a cosplay, thank you very much (or, you know, day clothes). You have a habit of hoarding all your Potter gear — over the years you have amassed a collection of things you've saved up for or things that your friends have gotten you for your birthday, and it's quite possible you have more Harry Potter related belongings than regular human belongings.
The #Feels Fan
You didn't come for the #feels, but you stayed for the #feels. You're reblogging all the fanart, reading all the fic, low key tearing up over all the Tumblr metas. Sometimes when you need a good cry you just read the seventh book because you can.
The "Oh, Yeah, The Movies Were Great!" Fan
NO SHAME. Giant book reading is not for all of us, and yeah, those movies were great, regardless of whether or not you partook in nerdy book reading sleepover marathons on the nights of the book releases. Movie fans deserve every bit as much of the magic of this fandom as the rest of us.
The Closet Fan
Harry Potter? What an overrated fandom, everyone needs to just get over — *trips* *thousands of Chocolate Frog Cards spill from pockets* Crap those aren’t mine I swear I’m just holding them for a friend I — *slips on a Firebolt* CRAP it's not mine I'm not in this fandom I just — *more Gryffindor memorabilia falls out as I fall to my knees, desperately trying to pick them up* Hang on a sec jUst LISTEN —
(Sorry not sorry for the meme appropriation.)
The Shipping Fan
You are really only here for your OTPs — canon or non-canon, they need you, dammit.
The Seasonally Appropriate Fan
You can't watch or read Harry Potter unless there's a pumpkin spiced something in your hands. Thanks to strategically scheduled ABC Family marathons of the films, they are forever in adulthood associated with coziness, autumn, and winter holidays, and getting in a Potter state of mind when it's warm outside just feels wrong.
The "Magic Is REAL" Fan
You're still low key waiting by the mailbox for your Hogwarts letter to arrive. You laughed with your friends about that theory that J.K. Rowling is actually a witch who cleverly exploited her world for literary gain, but when you stopped laughing, you privately believed it for years. OK, maybe you still do. You're on to her. Any day now the Statute of Secrecy will slip.
The Missionary Fan
YOU WILL NOT REST UNTIL EVERY MUGGLE ON THIS EARTH HAS READ AND FULLY APPRECIATED THE GLORY THAT IS OUR BESPECTACLED BOY WIZARD.
The "Meh" Fan
You read the series because your best friend is a Missionary Fan, but you're still not really sure what the big deal is. (Don't get me wrong — you're a monster. But respect. Carry on.)
The moment you finished the first book, whether you were nine years old or a full grown adult human, you just had this weird, cosmic sense that you were out for the count. No fandom was ever going to measure up to this one. You were maybe sad about peaking for a few moments, until you realized that the earlier you peaked, the more time in your human life you would get to spend revisiting the series over and over and over again.
Images: Warner Bros; Giphy