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Rita Skeeter Character Analysis: Animagus Reporter

Rita Skeeter Character Analysis: Animagus Reporter

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Rita Skeeter is a tabloid reporter and an unregistered Animagus. She used her ability to turn into a beetle to eavesdrop and get stories. She wrote several scandalous stories about Harry Potter before Hermione Granger discovered her secret and forced her to stop.

Hermione later convinced Rita to write an article about Harry’s experiences surrounding the return of Lord Voldemort for the Quibbler. This was to refute the stories being put out by the Ministry of Magic and the Daily Prophet.

Following the death of Albus Dumbledore, Skeeter wrote a book of dubious credibility revealing the life and lies of the highly respected wizard.

About Rita Skeeter

Born1951
Blood StatusPure-Blood or Half-Blood
OccupationReporter Animagus
PatronusUnknown
HouseUnknown
WandUnknown
Zodiac SignLibra (speculative)

Rita Skeeter Early Life

Rita Skeeter is a British witch who was born in 1951 and was probably educated at Hogwarts. At some point, she learned to become an Animagus and could turn herself into a beetle at will. Despite the Ministry of Magic requiring Animagi to register, Skeeter kept her abilities a secret. She used her ability to spy and eavesdrop on other people.

After her schooling, Rita decided to become a writer and reporter. Her approach was to write what people would want to read, rather than the strict truth. Dumbledore once described her work as “enchantingly nasty”.

One of her first books was a biography of ex-Hogwarts headmaster Armando Dippet entitled Armando Dippet: Master or Moron? The book became a best seller and Skeeter never looked back.

Skeeter also reported on the Death Eater trails at the end of the First Wizarding War. She told the stories of popular figures such as Igor Karkaroff and Ludo Bagman. She may have contributed to controversies, such as Barty Crouch Snr’s sentencing of his own son Barty Crouch Jnr to Azkaban, with her unique brand of reporting.

When Death Eaters put on a show at the Quidditch World Cup in 1994 and the Dark Mark appeared over the campgrounds, Skeeter produced an article for the Daily Prophet recording Ministry blunder, culprits not apprehended, lax security, and called the whole thing a national disgrace. Skeeter regularly wrote scandalous pieces of the Daily Prophet.

Rita Skeeter and the Triwizard Tournament

Rita Skeeter’s popularity as a reporter meant that she was invited to cover the Triwizard Tournament when it was held at Hogwarts in 1994-1995 for the first time in over a century. She immediately decided that Harry Potter, the chosen one, the boy who lived, was the heart of the story and focussed on him.

Claiming that she would be interviewing all the champions, she cornered Harry in a broom closet and tried to interview him. When she finally published the story, she got the names of some of the other champions wrong and forgot to even mention the other Hogwarts champion Cedric Diggory.

Skeeter falsified the interview with Harry describing him as a young hero haunted by his past and in a romantic relationship with Hermione Granger. This publication led Albus Dumbledore to ban Rita Skeeter from Hogwarts.

This did not deter Rita. To get her revenge she wrote an article about Hagrid exposing him as part giant and claiming that he scared the students. This prompted many to write to the school demanding the resignation of such a dangerous teacher. But an even greater number of former students wrote with kind words about Hagrid and demanded that he be kept on at Hogwarts.

When Harry, Ron, and Hermione encountered Rita in Hogsmeade, Hermione fought with Rita over what she did to Hagrid. In retaliation, Rita wrote a story about her saying that she used love potions to get the attention of famous wizards and how she had betrayed Harry Potter and started dating Viktor Krum.

She soon turned on Harry as well, describing him as disturbed and dangerous based on information passed to her by Draco Malfoy and some of the other Slytherins.

Rita Skeeter at Hogwarts

Rita Skeeter Exposed

Hermione became suspicious of Rita when she reported that Viktor Krum had asked Hermione to visit him in Bulgaria in the summer. Hermione knew that they were alone when they had the conversation. She had not told anyone else about it. Hermione also doubted that the private Viktor had mentioned it.

She also saw Malfoy and his friends seemingly speaking to no one shortly before Rita published a story for which they provided information.

Before long Hermione figured out Rita’s secret. Skeeter was an Animagus that could turn herself into a very small animal, specifically a beetle. Hermione was able to catch her while she was in her beetle form perched on the Hospital Wing window sill. She imprisoned her in a glass jar reinforced by an Unbreakable Charm.

Hermione told Rita that she would report her to the Ministry of Magic if she did not stop writing for a full year. This caused Rita financial stress and stopped her from doing the thing that she loved most – exposing the secrets of others.

Unfortunately, the damage was done. Rita’s articles claiming that Harry was unhinged helped the Ministry of Magic claim that his story that Lord Voldemort had returned was the result of an addled and disturbed mind.

Rita Writes for the Quibbler

Rita was back writing sooner than she imagined when Hermione summoned her to a meeting in Hogsmeade in February 1996. Hermione convinced Rita to write an article accurately reporting Harry’s story about the return of Lord Voldemort.

While Rita knew she had no choice, she did comment that the Daily Prophet would never publish it. But Hermione had thought of this too. She had spoken to friend Luna Lovegood, who convinced her father to publish it in his magazine, the Quibbler.

Rita Skeeter was not keen on the Quibbler, as it was known to be an eccentric publication. Nevertheless, she agreed in order to get Hermione off her back. The temptation of cracking such a big story must have been great.

Rita Writes About Albus Dumbledore

With Hermione no longer blackmailing Rita, she took advantage of Albus Dumbledore’s death to write a scandalous expose about the wizard. She was already clutching her notebook and will in her hand at Dumbledore’s funeral.

Within 400 weeks she had produced a 900-page biography called The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore. While most of the information that she shared in the book was in the public domain, she also found a new source of information, Dumbledore’s former neighbor and the famous historian Bathilda Bagshot.

She used Veritaserum to get information from the now very old witch and also took some photos from her home. This interview enabled her to expose that Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald were close friends in their youth. Connecting this with the fact that Albus’ father Percival Dumbledore had been sent to Azkaban for killing some Muggle boys, she could paint Dumbledore as a secret Muggle hater.

While her book was extremely biased and cast Dumbledore in a very negative light, it was based mostly on facts. Skeeter enjoyed spilling gossipy titbits from the book to drive up interest and sales.

Rita Skeeter After the Second Wizarding War

Always the opportunist, directly following the fall of Lord Voldemort Skeeter wrote a biography of Harry Potter, and another about Severus Snape called Severus Snape: Scoundrel or Saint?

Several years later, in 2014, Rita was set to publish yet another book Dumbledore’s Army: The Dark Side of the Demob. She attended the Quidditch World Cup final shortly before the publication of the book.

Instead of reporting the match live, she spent most of her time watching the VIP box where members of Dumbledore’s Army were sat. The incident ended with fellow commentator Ginny Potter (now married to Harry Potter) jinxing the witch.

Rita Skeeter Personality Type & Traits

Rita Skeeter loved gossip and causing drama and she did not really care who got hurt in her wake. She was willing to use dishonest tactics to get ahead, including not registering as an Animagus and giving old witches Veritaserum. However, there is no denying that she was a vivacious character passionate about what she did.

Rita Skeeter Zodiac Sign & Birthday

Rita Skeeter was born in 1951, but we do not know her birth date. Her personality suggests that her zodiac sign could be Libra since they are the gossips of the astrological world. People born under this sign are also very intelligent and will often do anything to get their own way.