Newt Scamander, Niffler — Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

The best new beasts in The Crimes of Grindelwald, ranked by sheer weirdness

Contributed by
Nov 16, 2018

There’s an unknown number of beasts wandering about in Newt Scamander’s suitcase, some of which we’ve probably never seen before onscreen and some of which we probably never will. While Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald focuses much less on the titular fantastic beasts than its predecessor, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, did, there are still plenty of new, magical creatures to see.

**This story contains spoilers for Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.**

Don’t get us wrong: Crimes of Grindelwald gives us some familiar faces, too. Among the new kids is a Phoenix, Pickett the li'l Bowtruckle, and, of course, the Niffler we first met in the original Fantastic Beasts — only, this time, we also get some trouble-making baby Nifflers, who are woefully underused and deliriously cute.

The new kids on the block are also some of J.K. Rowling’s weirdest additions to the series yet. Some are dark while others are just... odd. In the best way possible, of course.

We’re unsure about whether or not to include the Kelpie Newt rides, as these creatures have been mentioned enough times in Potter lore that this one doesn’t really feel new. Plus, Kelpies are a real-world myth, meaning they’re not an original Rowling creation. It is, however, majestic as can be. Honorable mention for the Kelpie.

Without further ado, here are the 8 most important new beasts in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, ranked by how insanely weird they are.

Fantastic Beasts: Crimes of Grindelwald

Kappa

While searching for Tina, Newt’s tracking spell reveals a Kappa, a creature he describes to Jacob as a Japanese water demon (it's based on a real legend). We got a brief look at the Circus Arcanus’ resident Kappa, which seems quite a bit more peaceful than its description would have you believe.

Usually, Kappas feed on human blood and, according to Pottermore, “are known for strangling humans that invade their shallow ponds.” Fun.

Augurey, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

Augurey

Like the Kelpie, Augureys have also been mentioned in Potter lore before, but they are an original Rowling creation, making them a bit more special.

Newt’s Augurey seems especially ruffled, and more than a little curious about Jacob. Given the creature’s piercing gaze, it’s no surprise that wizards used to think Augureys could predict death and would, therefore, avoid them at all costs. Eventually, someone (maybe Newt?) figured out that Augureys don’t predict death, but rain. The Wizarding World has the best weather forecasters in the business and they have cool green tailfeathers. Beat that.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

Sparking bird-dragon things

One of the other few circus creatures we see in action are the small creatures writhing around in a circular cage and shooting sparks at anyone daring enough to come close. Credence eventually frees them to ravage the circus and set everything on fire so he can save Nagini.

We’re not totally sure what these things are, but they might be Hoo-hoos, Japanese firebirds native to Japan. Or they could be totally new inventions for this film. They seem a bit more dragon-like than bird-like. But who’s to say?

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Antonia

Antonia, the Chupacabra

As proof of Grindelwald’s ability to charm his way out of any situation, the film even has him bringing the Chupacabra guard lizard to his side. At one point, Grindelwald calls the Chupacabra “Antonia” before accusing her of being too needy and throwing her out of the carriage.

She died too soon, as something tells us it would have been appropriate for Grindelwald to have a Nagini to his Voldemort. Imagine Grindelwald giving his “our hate is actually love” speech with a prickly lizard on his shoulder. Poor Antonia.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

Zouwu

Also new to the party was the Zouwu, which heavily resembles a rippling Chinese New Year dragon with its razor-sharp smile, enormous cat eyes, and ribbon tail.

Newt says the Zouwu can travel up to 1,000 miles in a single day, making it one of the most powerful creatures we’ve ever seen in the Potter series. Conveniently, all it takes is a jingly cat toy to make this enormous, elephant-sized beast go wide-eyed and pounce about like a house cat. The Zouwu eventually decides Newt is its new best friend, as most of his beasts do.

Matagot, Crimes of Grindelwald

Matagot

The French Ministry of Magic’s resident Matagots were featured heavily in The Crimes of Grindelwald’s marketing, including in trailers and first-look photos. In the film, Newt explains to Tina that the slinking, blue-eyed demon cats are actually spirit familiars charged with protecting the Ministry.

They are suitably scary, fast, and determined. It’s only thanks to the aforementioned Zouwu that Newt and Tina manage to escape intact.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

The giant fuzzy eyes

Like most of the creatures in Newt’s menagerie, these fuzzy, walking eyeballs don’t get much screen time in The Crimes of Grindelwald other than being fed. But they are… mildly terrifying?

The only thing comparable is Mike Wasowski in Disney’s Monsters, Inc., except these things are covered in hair and move around in a pack-like formation. Let’s hope they’re more like sheep than wolves because these are not creatures I’d like to meet in Knockturn Alley.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

Patrick, the deer that dislocates its jaw

Patrick has never done anything wrong in his life, ever. He is perfect. Part deer, part pelican, part snake, Patrick seems to be able to unhinge his jaw and inflate the skin under his mouth to swallow large amounts of food at once.

The world needs Patrick’s backstory. In fact, we demand it.

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