While the Heir to Slytherin was the most frightening villain of Harry Potter in the Wizarding World, it is not the reason Voldemort is portrayed as a snake.
It is important to recall the controversial remarks that were made by the Harry Potter creator. CBR supports the hard work of professionals in the industry on properties fans know and love as well as the larger world of Harry Potter that fans have taken on as their own. CBR’s ongoing coverage of Rowling is here.
Among the most iconic villains of modern fantasy, Lord Voldemort from the Harry Potter franchise is a standout as cold, brutal, and ominous. His unique face sets him apart from other fantasy antagonists. It’s one thing to be pure evil, it’s different to look similar to it. However, it’s never fully understood why Voldemort looks like a snake.
Tom Riddle’s look has changed so drastically throughout the years that Tom never explains why. Albus Dumbledore, the Harry Potter novelist provides a solution to this mystery. He claimed that Voldemort became less human over time and that his physical appearance was a symbol of the destruction his soul had to undergo to be able to create seven Horcruxes.
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The explanation is provided in the Harry Potter movie adaptations as well as in the Harry Potter books. To create a Horcrux one has to first break the soul by murder. Tom would have wanted to break his soul in seven pieces with the hope of defeating enemies, no matter how twisted the situation might be. Although Tom isn’t believed to have been spiritually affected by the killing of seven people, his face has an entirely different story to be told.
Lord Voldemort in the first way he was named looked quite snake-like. With a pale, slick face and slits for eyes, it’s difficult not to see the connection between himself and his favorite Slytherin mascot. Some may suggest that his resemblance to a snake might be due to his status as the heir of Slytherin or his ability in Parseltongue to speak, it was the ultimate ripping of his heart that transformed his life.
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The extreme lengths to which Voldemort was willing to go to achieve his goals were what ultimately caused his appearance to deteriorate. The dark magic that he employed over the years, even during the spell that gave him a physical body in The Goblet of Fire, accumulated and affected his body. It is impossible for that amount of magic to not be a physical manifestation. Once upon a time, Tom Riddle used his handsome looks as a tool to influence people, such as Snape, towards his cause However, towards the end, Voldemort needed to rely on increasing amounts of dark magic that would further deteriorate his looks.
It’s funny and easy to suggest that Voldemort is like a vampire because the character has one. However, that isn’t true. Voldemort’s horrible appearance is due to his numerous evil acts. He created the Horcruxes that shattered his soul, more than it could handle.