[Hollyleaf sitting in a forest during sunset]

Discussing Hollyleaf by Goldenbrook

Goldenbrook takes a closer look at Hollyleaf’s character.

[Hollyleaf sitting in a forest during sunset]
Art by Marshcold
[Hollyleaf sitting in a forest during sunset]

I’ve seen Hollyleaf get a lot of hate. It seems like she’s one of those characters where you love her or you hate her. I’m in the “I love her” camp, personally, but I decided to talk about why she makes for a compelling character.
Spoilers for Power of Three, Omen of the Stars, and Hollyleaf’s Story.
One of the reasons Hollyleaf gets hate is because of how ambitious she is. She’s called power-hungry as well. And yes, while she is certainly ambitious, she’s not power-hungry. She want to serve her Clan in the best way she can. Did she have the best reasons when wanting to be a medicine cat? No. But at the same time, it’s good for a character to have flaws. Hollyleaf then became a warrior apprentice once she realized that she wasn’t cut-out to be a medicine cat. She wasn’t doing this for power, but because she wanted to do what was best for her Clan.
The other reason I see people disliking her is because they say she’s a hypocrite. She says that the warrior code should be held above all else, but then she goes and breaks it. For example, besides the most obvious case, when Sol takes over ShadowClan, Hollyleaf and her brothers go into ShadowClan territory to spy. This is breaking the code by trespassing. But Hollyleaf was breaking the code with malicious intent. She is the kind of character to think of the greater good, and right then she thought that it would be better for the greater good to find out information and bring ShadowClan back to StarClan. Even when she killed Ashfur, she thought she was making the right choice.
But many other people have a problem with the fact that Hollyleaf killed Ashfur to hide the fact that Squirrelflight and Brambleclaw weren’t her parents, but then blurted it out to the entire Gathering. This is partly Hollyleaf’s view on the greater good striking again. We know this because she says to Cinderheart that the truth should always be what is told.
But notice I said partly. Hollyleaf went a little insane after hearing how her very existence shattered the code. It’s not hard to see why. She valued the code above everything, and knowing what she did crushed her. When she went into the tunnels, her mind began to heal. She got time away, to contemplate what had happened, and got the chance to have an existensial crisis

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8 comments

  • Solarpaw/flare | Kotlc superfan! | Team Foster-Keefe! | Huntlow FOREVER (TOH!!) | Mitsukou!!!<3 says:

    Nice article! I’m intrigued by where this was going. Unfortunately, it got cut off, but maybe you can post the second half in the comments? Or make a part 2?

  • Shadeleap (she/her) | Shade lit up by Leaping Flames | Shades, Shade, Shadey | Running for SW! says:

    Great article!!! I really like Hollyleaf, and her return and redemption arc was really good and awesome to read about

  • Brackenpaw/tuft who can't wait for the new Owl House episodes! Huntlow forever!!!!!!!!!(A.K.A. Lilypaw and Cricketpaw) says:

    Great article! I’m neutral on Hollyleaf. I feel bad for her.

  • Hollyleaf is really good but really misunderstood like she does everything for her clan, but then they all decide that she is a misfit and an outcast! Personally hollyleaf is one of my fav cats!

  • Hollyleaf became my ultimate favorite character. I didn’t really have a favorite character until Hollyleaf. I really loved her value of wanting to do the right thing despite have short fallings. It’s upsetting how she was treated by the authors, bringing her back just to kill her off again. I feel like she could have had more potential than what they gave her. I know they had a hard time writing for her.

  • Great article! Unfortunately it got cut off.. :(( Hollyleaf is amazing and in my top 5 favs <3

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