4

It looks like in the movie they are flying with the "handle" to the rear. But I've seen illustrations where it looks like they are flying with the "handle" forward. So which is it?

Winged Key

Winged Key

  • 3
    It may well be different in the films, books, and illustrations. They are not all in the same continuity. – Adamant Oct 3 '16 at 21:04
  • 1
    The text of the Philosopher's Stone doesn't have enough information to go on, so I guess it's up to the illustrator/filmmaker/props person/SFX person/whatever to decide. Possibly some keys are one way, some keys are the other. However, I know I tend to think of the pin as the "head", since you put that bit in the door. If you have the key the right way round, you'll be pushing it pin forward, so I if I were illustrating it, I know which way round I'd draw them – Au101 Oct 3 '16 at 22:48
  • 1
    @Au101 - I suspect the film imagery was driven by the need to have the keys embed themselves in the door as Harry went through. That means pin first. – Valorum Oct 3 '16 at 22:58
3

The image you've posted is actually a (previously) unpublished illustration from Potter cover artist Mary GrandPré. In other images the keys vary between bow-first and pin-first as well as upright. There seems to be no consistent decision on which direction they face or what the wings should look like.

HP:PS Concept Art

enter image description here

Pottermore moment - Chapter 16

enter image description here

Illustrated Harry Potter

enter image description here

enter image description here

Interestingly, in the Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone video game, the keys fly bow first, with the bit facing upwards. Weird.

enter image description here

  • To me it looks like they're bow first in the illustrated edition, don't you think? If you look at the "sweep" (vocab?) of the wings – Au101 Oct 3 '16 at 22:50
  • 2
    @Au101 - Some of them do, others don't. I've gone for a slightly more non-committal edit. Basically it's all f*cked up and I can't find any commonality other than they they're keys and they've got wings. – Valorum Oct 3 '16 at 22:57
  • 1
    :P :P I liked your answer and upvoted it, dw, I think you've got some great sources here and this looks like the answer - there isn't really a definitive one. On the point of the illustrated edition, at a first glance, most of them look pin first, but if you focus in on the wing shape (maybe I'm convincing myself of this), I think they're all bow first, it's just some of them seem to be viewed from below, or flying at weird angles, which give them a distinctly pin first look at a glance – Au101 Oct 3 '16 at 23:03
  • Actually (why am I spending my Monday evening on this) no you're right, some are pin first, some bow. I think. Let's leave it at: there is no answer :P – Au101 Oct 3 '16 at 23:12
  • 1
    @Au101 - Well, I'm doing this while watching Luke Cage, drinking booze and watching the new Plinkett's review of The Force Awakens on youtube with subtitles – Valorum Oct 3 '16 at 23:14

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.