George RR Martin says Gandalf would “kick Dumbledore’s ass” in a fight

The Game of Thrones author says the Lord of the Rings wizard could easily take down Harry Potter's headteacher

Dumbledore and gandalf

We like Dumbledore, surely one of Harry Potter’s most badass characters. But we also like Gandalf, Lord of The Rings’ ultimate wizard. But which is best? There’s only one way to find out: get the author of a fantasy series unrelated to both those characters to work out who’d win in a fight.


Fortunately for us, that’s just what’s happened with Game of Thrones writer George RR Martin wading in on the wizard’s war. And his ultimate winner? Gandalf.

Attending a screening of biopic Tolkien starring Nicholas Hoult, the fantasy author was on hand when star Lily Collins admitted she preferred the Harry Potter books to Lord of the Rings. “Gandalf could kick Dumbledore’s ass!” Martin shot back (via Variety).

Now, this might seem an obvious answer for Martin, whose Song of Ice and Fire novels were largely inspired by Tolkien’s writings. But we think the fight would be a lot closer.

Sure, Gandalf was a key player in the battles of Helm’s Deep and Minas Tirith, but Dumbledore was able to defeat Gellert Grindelwald without the elder wand. Plus, there’s no telling how ruthless Dumbledore can be – where was the mercy when he left a BABY on a doorstep, at NIGHT, in NOVEMBER?

Plus, Dumbledore arguably has a better understanding of the world at large, at one point possessing two of the Deathly Hallows, thereby almost becoming master of death.

Sure, Gandalf might always have the upper hand being an immortal Maia rather than a human like Dumbledore. But, to paraphrase Nigellus Black, even if Martin doesn’t rate the Hogwarts headteacher, you cannot deny Dumbledore’s got style.


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