Although most Harry Potter fans find Draco Malfoy to be an arrogant, selfish, and hateful villain, there are Draco apologists who feel otherwise and have found positive points to his character. A growing number of Harry Potter fan theories online point out an alternative view concerning Draco’s personality and intentions.
Should Draco join the long list of Harry Potter characters fans have learned to love? Once you take into account Draco's family history, early exposure to heinous acts, and even the impact of his dad on his life choices, you may realize fans may have mislabeled him all along.
Snatchers capture Harry, Hermione, and Ron while they are hiding from Voldemort. Fenrir Greyback leads the group of hunters and promptly takes Harry and company to Malfoy Manor. However, due to Harry’s disguised, bloated face, no one can identify him. They call Draco to take a look at the trio and confirm their identity, but he expresses hesitance, concluding it “could” be them.
After the invasion of Hogwarts, Draco experiences extreme pressure to resume his duties under Voldemort. Thanks to the success of Draco’s plan, Voldemort frees his father from Azkaban. However, Lucius’s release only adds to Draco’s stress since his father continually reminds him of the need for their family to redeem themselves to Voldemort. Additionally, his duties become increasingly difficult as he must interrogate Thorfinn Rowle himself. Draco is visibly sickened by the tasks and is no longer happy with his position. His mounting regrets about joining such a despicable group lead to his hesitance when identifying his classmates.
Throughout the books, Draco always brags about how great he is and how he was chosen for specific tasks by Voldemort. He often looks down on others while boasting about the superiority of his family. Coming from a very prideful clan, it is no surprise he takes on the task of eliminating Dumbledore with confidence. Kids talk big all the time, but that doesn't mean they're ready for real adult problems.
Despite being involved in very mature affairs, Draco is still a child. During his time with Voldemort, he witnesses others within the group getting hurt themselves. Outside his team, he's present for the slaying of Muggle Studies Professor Charity Burbage (he promptly passes out when it happens). He is far too young to have seen such atrocities, and yet, even as a boy, he is expected to do similarly horrible things. The stress and added pressures of the situation take a physical toll on Draco, leaving him in a sickly state. Even Harry grows sympathetic toward Draco when he sees the young Malfoy forced to hurt Thorfinn Rowle.
In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Draco successfully sets Voldemort's crew loose on the unsuspecting residents of Hogwarts. The entire campus becomes embroiled in combat as they try to stop the invaders. Draco continues with Voldemort’s plans and manages to subdue and corner Dumbledore, only he doesn’t finish the job. Instead, Snape steps in and takes out Dumbledore, putting an end to the Hogwarts headmaster.
Although Draco seems to be in full control during the fight, he questions whether to take out Dumbledore. A notorious braggart, Draco finds himself unable to back up his claims. Even as he is bragging to Dumbledore about the details of his plan and how he managed to complete his efforts right under everyone’s noses, he cannot bring himself to take the headmaster’s life. When faced with the prospect of committing such a heinous act, Draco simply cannot do it.
When Draco first appears in the books, he immediately expresses his disdain for anyone that isn’t a pure-blood. He hates Muggles, "half-breeds," Muggle-borns, and "blood traitors," making him a despised character.
The Malfoy family has a centuries-long history of being one of the wealthiest and most prestigious clans. The pride that comes with being a pure-blood was instilled in Draco early. He had limited contact with non-pure-blood families and grew up only among those of the highest status. He also takes pride in his family’s connections to Lord Voldemort and, just like his parents, hopes he will one day lead the wizarding world.
Draco doesn’t know his ideas are prejudicial because his family raises him to believe their views are the norm.