Congratulations, you got through The Crimes of Grindelwald. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, we suggest you leave because we’re about to break down some massive spoilers. Are you confused or feeling whiplash from that huge twist? Spoilers ahead!
That’s not surprising. J.K. Rowling generally builds up to big plot-changing moments. Her most surprising moment in the Harry Potter series was Snape revealing that he was in love with Harry’s mom Lily. But this Crimes of Grindelwald twist was some “Luke, I am your father”-level stuff.
In one of the final scenes of the film, Credence (Ezra Miller) decides to join Grindelwald’s side. He had just found out that he wasn’t a Lestrange via an extremely fast series of flashbacks. Long story short, Leta Lestrange accidentally killed her baby brother, Corvus Lestrange, who many fans believed Credence was. Grindelwald had been promising Credence for essentially the entire film that he would tell Credence who he really was, and he definitely delivered.
Credence was playing with a baby bird in Grindelwald’s headquarters in Austria, wondering if he made the right choice. Grindelwald hinted that the family Credence belonged to had the ability to summon Phoenixes if they were in need. If you remember back to one of Newt and Dumbledore’s conversations, Dumbledore said this himself earlier in the film. Grindelwald then drops that Credence is actually Aurelius Dumbledore! Albus Dumbledore’s long-lost brother! After seeing what he can do as an Obscurial and now with a wand, he looks extremely powerful!
How does this make any sense? We’re not entirely sure, but we do know that Albus is going to have to face down Aurelius at some point in the future. Grindelwald is going to turn brother against brother. For once in the entire Harry Potter series, Albus has no idea what’s going on. In the Harry Potter series, he was meticulous and seemed to always be one step ahead of Voldemort. Not this time. He clearly has no clue Credence aka Aurelius is his brother or he would have found him much sooner.
In the Harry Potter books, we found out more about the Dumbledore family. Kendra Dumbledore raised Albus, Aberforth (the black sheep of the family) and Ariana. Man, this family really likes ‘A’ names. Ariana died tragically while Grindelwald and Dumbledore were arguing. Aberforth never truly forgave Dumbledore for this and became a bartender at the Hog’s Head in Hogsmeade later in life. There was never any mention in Rita Skeeter’s book of an Aurelius, though.
Fans also found out another piece of vital information about the upcoming Grindelwald and Dumbledore duel. Many people thought that Dumbledore refused to fight Grindelwald because he still loved him. The reality is though that the former friends made a Blood Pact when they were teenagers and swore to never fight each other. That’s binding magic much like an Unbreakable Vow. Grindelwald was dumb enough to wear this blood pact as a broach on his jacket, so Scamander’s Niffler was able to steal it away when they were in the graveyard. Dumbledore just needs to figure out how to destroy this Blood Pact ASAP. This twist might not seem as revelatory as Dumbledore’s long-lost brother, but it says a lot of Dumbledore and his character. He hasn’t been avoiding a fight at all and didn’t send Scamander on an impossible mission for no reason. These revelations have totally changed the game.
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is in theaters now.