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Some years ago, during the heyday of the Harry Potter craze, there was an interview with Rowling going around the internet where she revealed that the snake Harry freed from the zoo in the first book was actually Nagini, the bad guy's pet snake from the later books. Fans went crazy over it: here was yet more evidence of the intense amount of planning that went into Rowling's series, sure proof of the complexity and depth of her books.
Yet all I could think was that this was a meaningless detail. The whole thing turned out to be a hoax--but even if it had been true, why would it matter? Would it have added anything to Harry as a character, or to the villain? Would it have added meaning or direction to the plot? If Rowling revealed that Harry wore the same underwear the first night of class his second year as he did the first night his third year, that would technically be a connection within her world, but it still doesn't mean anything.