Since reading the final words, "All was well," nine years ago, you've been dreaming about the day you'd get to read a new Harry Potter book. What you haven't been dreaming about is having to ask yourself tough questions about your favorite characters, like is Cedric Diggory evil? J.K. Rowling may have brought us back to the wonderful wizarding in world with Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, but things aren't exactly the way we left them also a decade ago.
In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire , Cedric Diggory, star Quiddich player, model Hufflepuff, and literary heartthrob, was murdered the night of the Triwizard Tournament by none other than Lord Voldemort. With dignity, bravery, and honor, Cedric gave his life to the fight against darkness and lived on as a true hero in the hearts of everyone who knew him.
But that was a another time, another reality, and in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Cedric Diggory isn't the golden boy you remember him to be. He's something far, far worse. Here's the basics:
In the newest Harry Potter installment, Harry's son, Albus, struggles to make friends at school, has a strained relationship with his famous father (who isn't doing too well himself), and feels crushed under the weight of his family's history. His only friend is Scorpius Malfoy, Draco's son, and the only girl who pays him any attention is the mysterious, silver-haired niece of Amos Diggory, Cedric's cousin, Delphi.
So what does all this have to do with Cedric's heart of gold turning black? Together with Scorpius, Albus is convinced by Delphi, who isn't who she says she is, to use a Time-Turner to go back 26 years in time and save Cedric's life by sabotaging him at the Triwizard Tournament and keeping him from winning. The only problem is, when the young wizards alter the past by rescuing Cedric, they ruin the future of everyone they love, and actually destroy the best parts of the boy they meant to protect.
In the new alternate reality Albus and Scorpius create, Cedric is so humiliated by his loss in the tourney, he becomes an enraged teen and a dangerous wizard who became a Death Eater, murders Neville Longbottom, and helps Voldemort seize power.
I know, mind BLOWN.
While we all mourned the death of Cedric Diggory in book four, this twist of fate that saves his life but destroys his soul is even more crushing. The idea that a beloved character, especially one as pure (and crush-worthy) as Cedric, could be truly evil is worse than the idea of death itself.
But that's only one reality, and as Harry Potter and the Cursed Child proves, there's plenty of alternatives. In one timeline, Cedric is capable of murder, violence, and evil, in another, he is the brave young boy who saves the day, and the lives of Albus and Scorpius to boot.
So is Cedric Diggoy evil? It all depends on whether or not the past can be put back together, whether or not another Potter boy can stop darkness from snuffing out all the light, and whether or not love can beat hate as it has in the past.
You'll just have to read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to determine for yourself which reality is... real.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: Parts One & Two (Special Rehearsal Edition Script), $17.99, Amazon
Images: Warner Bros.; Giphy (3)