Study Guide

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 Mad-Eye's Eye

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Mad-Eye's Eye

In this film, Mad-Eye's magical eye becomes symbolic of just how bad things have gotten for the non-evil Wizarding world—and how much power Voldemort's crowd has gathered.

Things are bleak enough that people are using eyeballs as office décor.

But let's back up: you remember how Mad-Eye used his magical eye, right? It was basically like a security camera that lived in his skull, and he could use it to see enemies approaching from basically all around—like, even through the back of his head. It was a 360-degree kind of coverage.

Well, that all changes when Mad-Eye, well, dies. We'll be honest: we were so upset about his death that we didn't really pause to think about what happened to that magical device, but it does end up reappearing—stuck in Dolores Umbridge's door at the Ministry of Magic.

Yup, that's right: when the Death Eaters killed Mad-Eye, and then took over the Ministry, they apparently gave Mad-Eye's "mad eye" to Umbridge. Who then installed it in her door to use as a way of spying on her fellow wizards.

So, you see, the purpose and meaning of the eye has totally changed when we see it in Umbridge's door. It used to be used for detecting evil and protection, but now it's part of the whole effort to increase evil and pain in the world (which is pretty much Umbridge's game).

That little change in the fortunes of Mad-Eye's eye really does stand in for just how much has changed in the Ministry of Magic and, well, for the whole Wizarding community. Evil is definitely on the march…and the Death Eaters have security cameras plucked straight from the skulls of corpses.

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