In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, there are three thrilling events that chosen wizards from each school (pretty sure it was four from each school and there are I think two schools other than Hogwarts) had to compete in these events. Here are the events:

  1. Wizard/witch must try to seize the golden egg from an arena while being chased and hunted by a type of dragon, possibly without dying.
  2. The competitor must rescue students at the bottom of a lake using a special seaweed that aids breathing underwater. The enemies in this are mermaids.
  3. The competitors much enter a maze and get out via portkey. This was a deadly one as taking the wrong turn possibly leads to trapping. This went horribly wrong as two competitors (Harry and Frederick) went to a dummy portkey after trying to outrun a closing maze channel. It took them straight to Voldemort, and Frederick was killed by Voldemort's curse.

Only one of these events was worth watching, and it was the Dragon. In the other two, the spectators were either staring for hours at a lake surface waiting for something to happen and waiting for someone to arrive out of the maze.

Why didn't the school come up with a way for the spectators to actually see what was going on in the other two events, as it is meant to be magical?

  • It's one student from each of the three schools, totalling three students. Some how, Harry's name is spat out as a fourth student, leading to the whole plot of the movie.
    – Gnemlock
    Dec 30, 2017 at 21:57
  • 1
    That's a major plot point to the entire story.. I have to question how valid your question is, when you don't seem to be too familiar with the story, in the first place.
    – Gnemlock
    Dec 30, 2017 at 21:58

1 Answer 1


tl;dr: Since the story is viewed from Harry's point of view, we follow him as a participator and don't get shown (in either book or movie) how the spectators, for whom stands were built at each location, observe the proceedings, but it is presumably via magical means.

This is going to be a tough one:

The Tournament, called the Triwizard is held (for the first time in over a century) at Hogwarts during the protagonist's (Harry's) fourth school year.

It is called Triwizard because there are three trials, and because three (a trio of) schools compete in it. Each school sends one contestant, to be selected by the eponomous Goblet of Fire. Due to machinations by the bad guys Harry gets selected as competitor, called champions as well.

As to the tasks:

During the second one, it is not students that are tied to the lake, but people that are personally close to the champions. Since it is happening at a school the hostages turn out to be students, yes, three of them are even students from Hogwarts Harry knows and cares about: his best friends Ron (his own hostage) and Hermione and the girl he has a crush on (Cho). But the fourth one is Fleur's little sister Gabrielle (why she is there the whole time (she arrived with the rest of the Beauxbatons girls) eludes me, since she should be 8 years old). And only Harry uses gillyweed, the others use other methods of underwater operation (shark transfiguration, bubblehead charm); it's at the champion's discretion.

During the third one, the cup in the middle that teleported them (Harry and Cedric) away was not supposed to do that, again due to machinations by the bad guys. It was not supposed to be a portkey at all.

In both the book and the movie (the latter being the topic of the question) we follow Harry's story. We actually don't see (in either medium, because Harry doesn't watch the tournament, he is a part of it), how the spectators (for whom they built stands after all) observe the event.

It could very well be via magical means. The book version might contradict this, because Professor Dumbledore converses with the chieftainess of the merpeople in the lake after the task, but then again, that could be just for clarification as to the reason why Harry didn't leave with Ron once he got there, but waited for all hostages to be rescued (In the movie the merpeople are actively hostile and not just playfully so, as they are in the book, so Dumbledore doesn't talk to her).

  • The question isn’t about the people in the lake, it’s about the spectators at the surface. And the cup is supposed to be a portkey: leading to the entrance of the maze, as it does from the graveyard. Though again that has nothing to do with the question.
    – OrangeDog
    Dec 30, 2017 at 13:02
  • @OrangeDog Why then is Cedric so surprised it was a portkey at all? > Cedric looked down at the Triwizard Cup and then up at Harry. “Did anyone tell you the cup was a Portkey?” he asked. “Nope,” said Harry < I talked about the merpeople only to counter the possible argument that there could not have been a screening from the underwater village square in the book because why would Dumbldore need to talk to the chieftainess then. The rest is correction of factual errors in the question (they don't rescue "students" but what they will miss most), like names and number of champions.
    – BMWurm
    Dec 30, 2017 at 13:12
  • the movie changes the detail about the maze; in the book, the maze is in the Quidditch pitch, so the spectators can presumably see the champions moving about and encountering the obstacles.
    – eques
    Jan 11, 2018 at 14:04
  • @eques Possible but unlikely imo, because in the book Barty jr. later states that he imerpiused Victor and blasted obstacles out of Harry's way to help him along, since he needed him to reach the portkey first for the plan to work, so if the spectators could actually see the champions clearly, they should be able to witness these events as well...
    – BMWurm
    Jan 11, 2018 at 16:00
  • Well, it is established in the book that the event is in the Quidditch pitch, which is of course a location exactly meant for spectating. Imperising may not be visual and even blasting the obstacles, etc may have been done in a way to make it suspicious only to the most careful observers. Given also that there are 4 champions and a large crowd, their attention may be diverted
    – eques
    Jan 11, 2018 at 16:10

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .