An Open Letter to Warner Bros.


Dear Warner Bros. and/or JK Rowling,

Last night, I had some time to kill, so I decided I would start to re-watch the Harry Potter film series. Naturally, I started with the first film, The Philosopher’s Stone, despite my friend’s warnings that it was the worst film of the series. I enjoyed the majority of the film, but I was disappointed by one scene which was extremely scientifically inaccurate to immersion breaking extent. I’m talking about the scene where Harry and the Dursley’s visit the zoo.

In this scene, Harry talks to the snake, the glass of the snake cage magically breaks, and Dudley falls into the cage. Harry’s ability to communicate with the snake was glaringly inaccurate. Snakes do not have ears. They cannot hear. Harry could not have possibly spoken with the snake. To make matters worse, the snake also blinks at Harry. As every five-year old snake lover knows, snakes do not have eyelids. The snake could not possibly have blinked! I enjoyed the humour of watching a spoiled, impolite child fall into a snake’s enclosure and end up trapped behind glass, but the scientific inaccuracy of the snake really ruined the scene for me.

I know you don’t have any plans for a ninth film, but if you ever do, I would urge you to spend 5 minutes reading the Wikipedia page about snakes, specifically the section about their anatomy. The film would be much more believable if the snakes were not portrayed to have organs that they simply don’t have.



An amateur herpetologist