Transcript #39

MuggleCast EP39 Transcript


Andrew [Show Intro with music in background]: This is MuggleCast – Episode 39 for May 15th, 2006. [in whiny voice pretending to cry] I know it’s late. Please don’t hurt me!

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Ben: Hello, everyone. Welcome to MuggleCast – the show where we bring you everything Harry Potter from discussions, theories, facts, prophecies, Snape, Horcruxes, JK Rowling, and Dumbledore. [laughs]

Andrew: [in weird voice] Yay!

Ben: I’m Ben Schoen.

Andrew: [laughs] I’m Andrew Sims.

Eric: I’m Eric Scull and I suck at intros.

Laura: I’m Laura Thompson.

Micah: And I’m Micah Tannenbaum.

Andrew: Micah Tannenbaum is standing by in the MuggleCast NewsCenter with the latest…

Ben: Harry Potter news.


Micah: Jo Rowling’s recent response to the criticism she received from the media about her “For girls only, probably…” article has been covered by several British newspapers. Although many newspapers criticized her piece, the media are only focusing on The Mail on Sunday’s article, which we highlighted. The story has been covered by The London Times, The Daily Mail, Sky News and more.

As mentioned a few weeks ago, HPANA reported that Nicholas Hooper will be composing the soundtrack for the next Harry Potter movie, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Warner Bros. confirmed Friday to Film Music Radio that he will indeed be scoring the soundtrack for the fifth film.

In 2004, Hooper won the BAFTA for Best Original Score and was nominated several other times for the prestigious awards.

To launch their “Summer Reading Buzz!” program which encourages children to read at least six books over the summer, Scholastic, publisher of the US Harry Potter books, has invited a panel of authors, book professionals, and aspiring writers to their headquarters to discuss the children’s book publishing industry. The panel includes the editor of the American Harry Potter series, Arthur Levine, and in a segment called “The JK Rowling Phenomenon,” he discusses how Jo became successful. You can watch the video of the interview over on

Over the past few weeks, a woman in Gwinnett County, Georgia has been fighting her child’s school district to remove Potter books from the schools within the district. We’ve learned that her attempt has failed, and the books will indeed remain in libraries. The full article from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution can viewed over on

The Goblet of Fire DVD has placed in the Guinness World Records for being the fastest selling DVD ever.

The DVD sold five million copies on release day alone. A certificate to recognize this special honor was presented to Dan Radcliffe on set of Order of the Phoenix last month. Comments from the Potter actor, including a photo, will be in the 2007 Guinness Book of World Records.

And speaking of Dan Radcliffe, he and Emma Watson both received top awards at the 2006 German Bravo Otto Awards. Dan won the Male Moviestar category and Emma took home top honors in the Female Moviestar category.

Warner Bros. is once again trying to tackle Internet movie piracy by signing a deal with BitTorrent which will allow consumers to download hundreds of WB productions legally. TV shows will start off at a price of around $1.00 with full-length movies costing roughly the same as a DVD rental.

And Emma Thompson will be back in Order of the Phoenix movie as Professor Sybil Trelawney. She shot some of her scenes just last week. Also, we’ve been told that as the Knight Bus is “in bits,” it won’t be making an appearance in this film.

The New York Times reported earlier this week that JK Rowling will be in New York City this August for a charity book reading. Jo will be at Radio City Music Hall in the company of authors Stephen King and John Irving.

Money raised through tickets will be donated to Doctors Without Borders and the Haven Foundation, which benefits “artists who suffered from illness or accidents.” Tickets range from $12.50 – $100.00, but there also is family packages costing $1,000 that include four orchestra seats and a signed book from each author. Jo will be reading on the nights of August 01st and August 02nd. Tickets are still on sale now and are limited to eight per person.

And just four days after Lumos, the Leaky Mug crew will be in NYC for this event hosting a podcast on August 02nd. For more information listen to the most recent Leaky Mug.

And there is also a variety of updates to Jo’s site, including a thank-you to MuggleNet’s Andy for his response to the criticism of Jo’s weight-obsessed article. The Harry Potter author said Andy saved her time enough to write a half-chapter of the seventh book.

That’s all the news for the May 14th, 2006 edition of MuggleCast. Happy Mother’s Day! Back to the show.

Andrew: All right, thank you, Micah.


Andrew: Ah, let’s see… Ah, there’s so – this has been such a good Harry Potter week.

Ben: Oh, it’s been beautiful.

Andrew: Let’s get to a couple of announcements first. [laughs] Actually, we only got one announcement for you anymore. Let’s just not even call it announcements anymore, let’s just call it MuggleCast t-shirt time.

[Ben laughs]

Andrew: Don’t forget everyone, buy your MuggleCast t-shirt because National Wear Your MuggleCast Shirt Day is only a few weeks away on June 02nd. We talked with our shirt provider this week and he said that the deadline to order your shirts is May 23rd, coincidentally my birthday. [mockingly coughs] Presents can be mailed to the MuggleCast PO Box, Attention: Andrew Sims.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: The absolute…

Ben: And I will keep them. And they will remain in my closet until a year from now.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: The absolute deadline for ordering your shirts is May 26th, but our shirt provider guarantees them if you order them by May 23rd, they are guaranteed. Our shirt provider is Sam actually quit his day job recently to – he’s full-time t-shirt extraordinaire.

Ben: Profession.

Andrew: Yeah – man, guy, dude. So, please visit – they create some excellent shirts as you’ve seen. And don’t forget that National Wear Your MuggleCast Shirt Contest…

Ben: That’s coming up pretty soon, but Andrew, I have a question – I have a question for you. Why is it just National Wear Your MuggleCast T-Shirt Day, why not National Wear Your MuggleCast T-Shirt Month?

[Andrew laughs]

Laura: Ohhh.

Ben: Where you wear the same t-shirt everyday for a month.

Andrew: Because well, that would be kind of gross, but we want to focus it all on one day. We want the Americans to see everyone wearing their MuggleCast t-shirts. It was like that Immigration Day. You know, if it was Immigration Month, then they would have just taken off whenever. Remember, like two Fridays ago?

Ben: Oh yeah. I see.

Laura: Mhm.

Andrew: Or two Mondays ago? You know what I mean?

Ben: Yeah, so it’s more of a concentrated effort.

Andrew: Right, exactly. The deal with National Wear Your MuggleCast Shirt Day is that is that everyone wears their MuggleCast shirts on June 02nd, send in a picture of you wearing your shirt somewhere out in public, e-mail it in. We’ll randomly select five people who send in their pictures and they will an exclusive MuggleCast LIVE in Las Vegas t-shirt, which is absolutely fantastic. And they will be the first five people to see them and wear them. They might get it before we do. [laughs]

Ben: Yeah. [laughs]

Listener Rebuttal – House Points

Andrew: We have one listener rebuttal for everyone this week because we’ve got a lot to get to. This one comes from Kelly, 21, of Tennessee. This is in regard to a discussion we were having the other day as – concerning how everyone knows how many House Points each House has. So, Kelly writes:

You guys were talking the other day (Episode 36) about how House Points are posted, and I just thought I’d let you know that on pg. 853 of the US edition of Order of the Phoenix, it says, “‘So that’s fifty each for Potter, the two Weasleys, Longbottom, and Miss Granger,’ said Professor McGonagall, and a shower of rubies fell down into the bottom bulb of Gryffindor’s hourglass as she spoke.”

Andrew: Now, come to think of it, I do remember seeing these in the movies.

Ben: Yeah.

Laura: Mhm.

Jo Returns To NYC

Andrew: All right, so moving on. We don’t do this very often, but this week we are going to discuss a little news that’s happening, because it so big and we are really excited for several reasons.

Ben: And proud.

Andrew: We’re proud, we’re excited, we’re thrilled and honored.

Ben: Everything.

[Laura and Ben laugh]

Andrew: You name it, we are it!

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: Is that proper grammar? Someone correct me.

Ben: Where’s Emily when you need her?

Andrew: So this week… Yeah! This week – let’s see it was late Tuesday night, the New York Times posted a story saying that JK Rowling would be in New York City for the first time in six years. Not New York City the first time in six years, but the United States. This is the first time she has been in the United States since six years ago and she will be joining Stephen King and John Irving for a benefit reading. And we were immediately thrilled to hear this because first of all, I’m just two hours away. Everyone else is – well no, Micah is right, practically right in the City.

Ben: I am – I am 1,300 miles away.

[Laura and Ben laugh]

Andrew: Oooh, fantastic.

Eric: I am somewhere in between there.

Andrew: And so…

Ben: Right next door. [laughs]

Andrew: So, what we are really excited about is we do plan on going to this right after Vegas. The timing is perfect for us because the LIVE podcast in Las Vegas Lumos 2006 is July 29th, I believe. We’re coming home the 30th. Then right after that, it’s straight up to New York City for this.

Ben: New York City, baby!

Andrew: So, what do you guys think? First time she has been here in six years.

Ben: Six years ago, I was a little tot. Six years ago I hadn’t even been on a computer yet – there’s to put it in perspective for you. Now I live on a computer.

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: Actually, I heard that Jo was going to wear her MuggleCast t-shirt to the event.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Maybe we should change the day to August 01st…

Laura: We should mail her one. We should mail her one and tell her she has to where it.

Andrew: Yeah. Let’s do that.

Ben: I’m sure she would. She doesn’t have anything better to wear.

[Laura and Micah laugh]

Ben: I’m really excited. What book do you guys think she is going to read from? Probably Half-Blood Prince.

Laura: I would think Half-Blood Prince.

Ben: I’m actually pretty excited to see Stephen King too.

Laura: Yes! Ah, it’s going to be awesome!

Andrew: What are some of the books that he has written?

Ben: Rita Hayworth and The Shawshank Redemption.

Laura: Carrie, The Shining.

Ben: There’s a lot of them.

Andrew: So, of course we will be updating everyone on that over the next couple of weeks. Gosh, it’s only – it’s under three months away. [laughs] Yay!

Book 7 Discussion

Andrew: All right, now it’s time for this week’s general discussion. You might remember last week we started mixing it up a bit. Two weeks a month we will be doing general miscellaneous discussions about whatever the heck we want. Then the other two weeks, we will be doing character discussions. So this week, we will begin a new series that we’ll be doing every, I guess, month or so. What we need to know in Harry Potter 7.

Ben: Oh, geez, I love this segment.

Andrew: Because – come on, man, it’s all the rage now. Book 7, everyone wants to know. What’s going to be happening? So, we have a few questions we’re going to answer each week.

Godric’s Hollow

Andrew: Who wants to lead this?

Ben: I will. Godric’s Hollow. What information, do you think, needs to be gathered from there? What is there to learn about it? And what significance is it going to play to the plot of Harry Potter 7?

Micah: What’s there? Is it a house? I mean…

Laura: Well, that’s what it might be now.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Eric: I don’t know what would make Harry think that they’d still be there.

Ben: That who’d still be there?

Eric: That Lily and James…

Micah: You said, Eric, you’ve had a problem with Godric’s Hollow.

Eric: Yeah, Micah.

Micah: Don’t you?

Eric: I have about 150 problems with Godric’s Hollow.

Andrew: Name your biggest problem.

Ben: Yeah. [laughs] Don’t say all 150.

Andrew: Yeah.

Ben: We know you want to..

Eric: Biggest problem, Harry shouldn’t know as much as he seems to know about it.

Laura: What does he seem to know about it, though, apart from the fact that he and his parents lived there?

Eric: To me, it didn’t seem like – I can recall any indication or any indication or any reason that Harry should have the indication that A) his parents would still be there. Buried there, and not necessarily under the house, just still residing there in whatever form. In a way it makes sense that they lived there they’d be buried there, but that again isn’t something I’d think Harry – Harry just immediately said to Ron at the end of Book 6, “I’m going to Godric’s Hollow, and I’m going to find everything about my parents and it’s somehow going to lead me to Horcruxes, and that’s where I’m going to start my search.” And Ron’s like “Okay, Yipdideedoda. Go ahead.” But we have, like…

Ben: Are you sure that’s not a fan fiction story? Did he actually say he was going to go there? Yeah, he did, didn’t he? That’s right.

Laura: Yeah, but he didn’t say he was going to find out about Horcruxes there; he just said that that was were it all started so, it was probably the best place for him to start.

Ben: He’s returning to his roots.

Eric: But, that isn’t where it all started, though. It kind of is, like as far as the downfall of Voldemort, but…

Laura: That’s where it all started for Harry, though.

Eric: But, what’s he going to find after so many years – even if he can find the house? And there’s going to be like – if there are Muggles in the area, I just don’t know if he’s going to be able to discover too many things. I don’t think it’s likely that somebody would leave him a trail of clues. Or even James, leaving him notes throughout the destroyed house to find something.

Laura: Eric, do you think he’s necessarily going there to discover things? Because I thought it was entirely possible that that could have just been for him, for his own satisfaction. To go back to where he had lived and he’s known about his history for the past six years and yet, he’s never been to where it all went down. So, I think it’s…

Ben: Well, he has but not…

Laura: Not in his immediate memory, however. He doesn’t remember being there apart from the blinding flash of green light. So, I can see why’d he’d want to go back.

Eric: I agree. I think for personal reasons, it makes sense, but how’s he going to get there? How is he even going to find it? The distinct impression that I got at the end of Book 6 was that he already knew where it was and what it was, and none of us do. Well…

Laura: Wouldn’t Remus know where it was?

Ben: Not necessarily. He knew that his parents grew up there, and I’m sure plenty of people knew where it was because it’s a famous site. It’s where the one person who ever survived the Killing Curse – that’s where it happened.

Eric: But, all I’m saying is, who’d he ask to find out where Godric’s Hollow was and how did he find out and where is it?

Ben: We’ll find out. We’ll find that out in Book 7.

Eric: He knows. He’s just like, “I’m going to go find Godric’s Hollow now.” And I’m like, “Well how do you know anything about Godric’s Hollow?” We don’t even know why it’s called Godric’s Hollow, if it has something to do with Gryffindor or not.

Ben: Okay, it’s kind of like – oh geez, I’m so dumb. What the name of the village the Weasleys live in? Chipping Sodberry?

Laura: Like St. Ottery and Catchpole. Something like that.

Micah: Ottery St. Catchpole.

Ben: St. Catchpole!

Eric: Yes.

Ben: Yeah, St. Ottery Catchpole.

Eric: Catchpole. Ottery St. Catchpole.

Ben: Yeah, Ottery St. Catchpole.

Eric: St. Ottery Catchpole. [laughs]

Ben: It’s kind like that for the Weasleys.

Laura: Yeah.

Ben: It’s not like, “Oh my gosh, where did they come up Ottery St. Catchpole.” It’s just a name for a village.

Eric: So, you’re saying you don’t think it has anything to go with Godric Gryffindor, or what?

Ben: Well, there’s probably some relation there, but I’m just saying that it’s just the name of a village.

Laura: Well, would it be entirely improbable that there would be villages in Britain named after the four founders of Hogwarts?

Ben: No, but for all we know, there could be another Godric. Just like when people saw Mark Evans…

Laura: Yeah, exactly.

Ben: Evans automatically triggered that, “Oh geez, Lily Evans. There has to be some relation here.” Then Jo shot that down. So with – in terms with Godric’s Hollow, it may just be another coincidence, but in this case, I get the inkling that it’s probably somehow relating to Godric Gryffindor. But I’m not sure.

Eric: There’s still an open theory regarding James Potter that he might be or even that Harry might be the heir of Gryffindor.

Ben: Did Jo shoot that down?

Laura: Yeah. I thought she did.

Eric: Did she? Okay. What scares me is the fact that Harry might all of a sudden know things that he didn’t learn in front of us, and that would really upset me because I think it would take away from his whole quest. If Jo zooms in on his quest like when he’s midway through it and says out of nowhere all of this stuff that he learned how he’s going to do this.

Ben: I don’t see that happening. So…

Eric: I think it’d just take away from things. I think he needs to learn everything in front of us so that we can appreciate all of his knowledge and watch. I think it’s the exemplar quest. It’s like we’re suppose to see how this is being done.

Ben: And I think that that’s already happening. I don’t think we have to worry about Harry gaining some inside information that we don’t see because the book is written from his point of view. Go ahead, Micah.

Eric: Yeah, so it only makes sense. But the only mention of Godric’s Gryffindor, I remember, is in Book 3 when Flitwick tells the story, and I don’t even understand how Harry would be in the situation to remember that name, let alone understand that his parents are still there, or buried there, and that he’s going to go seek it or know where it is.

Andrew: Hold on, just real quick. In – I’m going to play devil’s advocate and say Godric’s Hollow is a Muggle village, right?

Eric: Well, Muggles are there.

Andrew: Right.

Laura: Or at least near.

Andrew: Why would they name it after Godric Gryffindor if it’s a Muggle village and wizards aren’t really known to be around there?

Eric: Well, wizards can have influence. It’s not like you can’t name something Spell Lane or Witchcraft Avenue. I’m sure there are some of those in the US…

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: …just Muggle inspiration. I’m just trying to think if they had to – I would imagine Godric Gryffindor among, above any of the other founders, as being a Muggle man. Kind of like Dumbledore.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: Involving himself in the Muggles. Maybe he’s famous in Muggle history; we just don’t know.

Micah: Well, the one thing I was just going to say, real quick, was that you might just be assuming that just by him saying he wants to go back there, doesn’t necessarily mean he knows exactly where it is.

Eric: Yeah.

Laura: Mhm.

Eric: But he never said, “I’m going to find out where it is first.” He’s not like, “Okay, well I have to find somebody who knows where it is.” Well, first of all, Sirius is dead. He’s going to have to ask Hagrid I guess. If he finds it…

Laura: Or Remus.

Andrew: Or Remus.

Eric: Or Remus. I don’t know.

Trio Returning To School?

Andrew: Next question here. Will Harry or any of the Trio ever return to school? We’ve talked about this numerous times, but maybe now…

Ben: And will the school even be open though? Let’s consider that.

Andrew: Right. We can lay it to rest now.

Eric: They didn’t close Hogwarts for the Chamber of Secrets, both times. They didn’t close Hogwarts when Dumbledore was away in three of the books.

Andrew: Well, see school was going on then though.

Ben: Yes, and this has brought it to a whole new level.

Eric: Yeah.

Ben: But, I personally think that Hogwarts will be open and I see – for some reason, I see Harry having to go alone on this one. I don’t know.

Andrew: Going alone on what?

Ben: Well, on his little journey.

Andrew: Oh.

Ben: Not entirely alone, because if he tries to go solo he’s going to lose, but I just see Ron or Hermione being at school at least part of the time. That’s just how I foresee it.

Laura: Mhm.

Eric: Yeah well, Hogwarts has always been the number one safe-haven for people – especially people afraid of Voldemort. We’ve always seen that Hogwarts has been there. It stayed open during Voldemort’s reign the first time, presumably. I mean, there were all those seventh years who wouldn’t have been seventh years if they – if the school just opened. Well, I guess they would have been, but it’s I just think – I get the impression that Hogwarts was always open even when Voldemort reigned, even when Grindelwald was doing whatever he did, and it makes no sense to me that they would close it just… I mean, yes, they’ve lost a Headmaster, and yes, they’ve lost the best Headmaster they probably ever had or ever will have.

Ben: Yeah.

Eric: But, Hogwarts has always been this beacon, not necessarily even of hope, but just it’s been this school that’s always been open no matter what. And it’s had numerous inner insurgencies, where like all this inner-crap happens to it and the structure’s ready to blow up, but Hogwarts has always stayed in there.

Ben: Something that I think is important to bring up is Dumbledore is the only man that Voldemort ever feared and now that he’s been killed, it sort of makes sense that the rest of the wizarding community may be pretty upset about it. And so the only reason I think that Hogwarts will stay open is because it’s kind of like America and how we all don’t stay locked inside of our houses just because there was a terrorist attack on September 11th. Because we know the threat’s there. The people in the Muggle world – not the Muggle world, but the wizarding world know the threat of Voldemort’s there, but it’s not going to hamper their everyday lives, and I don’t see it hampering the everyday lives of students who are attending Hogwarts. Because that would completely defeat the purpose. That’s letting Voldemort win in its own sense, so I don’t think Jo will let that happen.

Andrew: Yeah, but in the past a lot of parents have voiced their concerns over keeping the school open.

Ben: Right, but that’s when children were showing up petrified left and right.

Andrew: Yeah, but this is worse, isn’t it? It could happen, you know?

Ben: I guess, because Death Eaters got into Hogwarts, but I see security being a lot tighter than it has been in the past. Back when Chamber of Secrets – not Chamber of Secrets, but Prisoner of Azkaban, when they started having Dementors on the lawn, out in the yard, guarding the castle doors, I see something, perhaps Ministry protection, full-time around the castle, just so students get their education. Because, imagine what that would do to magical education in general. Imagine if America suspended all schools for an entire year, then everyone would be behind. Or basically, it’s indefinitely until Voldemort stopped or whatever. I imagine that some parents will keep their kids at home, but I think that Hogwarts will be open for those who still want to learn.

Eric: I agree and I think that’s a nice parallel that Ben was making. Also, if – I just think it kind of sucks, if Hogwarts was safer when Dumbledore was alive than it is now, which I would be willing to bet that’s true no matter what, even though Dumbledore and traces of Dumbledore might still be at Hogwarts, parents spent most of the time they had, where their kids were safe at school, they spent it disliking Dumbledore and discrediting him thanks to the Ministry. They spent their – their kids were going to his school more protected than they could be anywhere else in the world, and yet they were called upon to hate him and send in nasty owls about how he runs things and how he behaves. I just think it sucks that they had so little time to actually appreciate his headmastership.

Ben: Continuing with the terrorism analogy, after the United States was hit on September 11th, it basically made people ask the question afterwards – we started beefing up security and things like that. Are we truly any safer than we are before? And I feel that the wizarding world is going to have to ask themselves the same question, specifically with Hogwarts in terms of Dumbledore dying. Because after Dumbledore’s dead, now they realize, “Oh crap, there’s all these holes in the castle and all these loopholes that the Death Eaters can use to infiltrate it, so they’re going to have to plug those and then find out exactly how safe they are. And, I think Hogwarts is probably safer now than it was in the past because they’re starting to figure out, “Maybe we should scan the castle more and find out where all the cracks for people to get in are,” pretty much.

Micah: Yeah, and I think his death could be a rallying point and possibly finally bring all of the houses together.

Eric: I like the idea of Hogwarts being together as one, especially in honor of or in the aftermath of Dumbledore’s death, but I don’t know if the Slytherins gave a crap, or that any of their families respect Dumbledore as much as the other houses’ families would.

Ben: Whoa! Well, hold on. Eric, you’re starting to sound stereotypical. Continuing with my wonderful terrorism analogy again, after September 11th, what happened is, the United States, all of the sudden, we had this stigma towards anyone that was part – that was Muslim, that appeared to be Muslim. And so it raises the question at Hogwarts, is anyone that’s Slytherin automatically going to be considered a Death Eater, like they sort of are now?

Andrew: Yeah.

Ben: Hagrid said, [continues in a deep “Hagrid” voice] “Any witch or wizard that hasn’t been gone bad has always been in Slytherin.” Which really doesn’t make grammatical sense, but we all know what he’s trying to say.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Nice impression.

Ben: And so, the point I’m trying to make is that I don’t think it’s fair for us to have this stereotype about Slytherins. You say, “Well, I don’t think the Slytherin house really gave a crap.” I’m sure there are some good Slytherins.

Micah: Right.

Ben: For example, Slughorn is Head of Slytherin house and personally, I like the guy. So, I don’t think that…

Micah: Right. I think that’s what’s the biggest reasons for seeing unity in Book 7, is that he is the Head of House in Slytherin now.


Andrew: Okay, let’s move on to a little Aberforth discussion now. We wanted to talk about what role he’s going to play in the books because Jo said that there’s one Order of the Phoenix character that we have met briefly, but learn a whole lot more about in Book 7. Is it him, Micah?

Micah: That’s a great question.

Ben: Is Aberforth a member? Does it say that in the book?

Andrew: Yeah, he is.

Ben: Okay, duh. But, I don’t know. I think he’s too busy off [beep] goats to save the world.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: We’re definitely keeping that in, just bleeping it out.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: It was only mentioned once and then the Hog’s Head is kind of a reference to the goat, but anyway – or the pig or animal or farm animals in general.

Ben: Do you guys feel that – I don’t know if it will play that great a role, but it may be him that we learn a lot more about, but just because we learn a lot more about them doesn’t necessarily mean that they play a major role. I think what we should do is go back to Order of the Phoenix and look through all of the people Harry sees in the picture, or actually examine who he’s met that’s a member of the Order.

Andrew: Aberforth seems like someone who would approach Harry now that his death – or Dumbledore’s death has occurred. Aberforth would approach Harry, being Dumbledore’s brother and talk to him maybe a little bit about Dumbledore and then open up a bit about himself. Would anyone agree?

Ben: Right. But was, but was, but was Aberforth let in on Dumbledore’s plan?

Andrew: Well, it – regardless. I don’t think it matters either way.

Eric: Probably not, but…

Ben: Well, he may have known his brother, but unless…

Eric: Well yeah, but…

Ben: …unless he’s actually known what’s going on…

Eric: …how…

Ben: …and the things he’s experienced, then it’s sort of irrelevant.

Eric: Well, actually, I’m pretty sure Dumbledore got him out of trouble with the goat, and if he didn’t get him out of trouble with the goat – well, put it this way: Aberforth lives in Hogsmeade, right next to Hogwarts and I think it would be very unlikely for Dumbledore not to keep contact with his brother. And even if he didn’t, as Andrew said – regardless whether or not Aberforth knows of any plans or not, he’s still his brother. He still grew up with him a little bit, and so there’s all this potential where JKR didn’t mention it in the books, but she said so on her site. We know that that was him and all sorts of stuff, that it’s just like he’s waiting to come out.

Micah: Well, Dumbledore and Harry – don’t they return from the cave right in front of the Hog’s Head?

Eric: They do too. Yeah.

Micah: Be interesting to see all the stuff that happens.

Andrew: [laughs] Good observation, Micah. I agree.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Anyone else agree?

Eric: It’ll be interesting…

Micah: Well… [laughs]

Eric: It’ll be interesting to read this book.

Andrew: Eric, I’m sure you disagree.

Ben: Yeah. [laughs]

Eric: I agree. Book 7 will be interesting.

Laura: I definitely agree.

Micah: No, to go back and see what happens.

Andrew: Oh go – oh, go back?

Micah: See all the events that took place. See if it’s – if there’s any connections there.

Andrew: Yeah.

Horcrux Hunt

Ben: The final thing – the final part of our segment here: Who is the best resource for Harry to go to when beginning to search for horcruxes? Moody? Lupin? Slughorn? But Dumbledore only told him to confide in Hermione and Ron. Oh, by the way, JK Rowling confirmed today that it is indeed Horcruxes – not Horcri. Sorry, John.

Andrew: Thank god. [laughs]

[Laura laughs]

Ben: Get him off his high horse.

Andrew: So, Dumbledore told him to only confide in Hermione and Ron. Of course Harry’s not going to listen.

Eric: No. He did, though.

Laura: It wouldn’t be any fun if he did.

Eric: He did listen, though. And that’s what I want to say is because he listened more than he should have. Okay, I think Harry listened more than he should have to Dumbledore because out of nowhere – I was under the impression when I was reading Book 6, that he was going to tell McGonagall. And I – I was just seeing this story unfold in my head where he was going to tell McGonagall and she was going to get some of her old friends to help them out, and all sorts of stuff. Then, all of a sudden, out of nowhere, he says, “Oh I can’t tell you because Dumbledore didn’t want me to tell you that” or “I’m just not going to tell you about Horcruxes at all. Or what happened. I’m not going to tell you… Out of nowhere!

Ben: That was probably a wise decision, though.

Laura: Yeah. I agree.

Eric: Well, yeah. It might have been – but it was more wise than Harry was. It was like, almost super-wise. Like, all of a sudden it hit him that he wasn’t supposed to be trusting anybody and so he told McGonagall nothing. It just seemed like…

Ben: Pull your head out, dude. Look at just what happened. Look at what just happened to him.

Eric: It seemed really out of place, though – that all of a sudden, he was like, “No, I’m not going to tell you.”

Ben: Death Eaters infiltrating Hogwarts? Who’d actually think that would ever happen? And then when Dumbledore tells him something, he’s learned to trust him and so he’s not going to go blabbing around because he doesn’t know who’s on his side anymore because they just got betrayed by Snape, so how is he supposed to know who to trust?

Eric: And you think that he’s going to break Dumbledore’s promise and go tell Moody now? And go tell Remus? When he wouldn’t tell McGonagall?

Ben: I doubt it. I think that he’s going to confide in Ron and Hermione like Dumbledore told him to and that’s – that…

Andrew: You really think so?

Ben: …that’s all he’s going to need.

Andrew: No way.

Ben: I mean – well, in terms of the Horcruxes. He’s not – he’s not going to tell Moody or Lupin about them. Slughorn would be okay, because Slughorn already knows about them. But…

Andrew: Well, let’s take Ron out of the picture. How much is Ron going to be able to add? Hermione can do some hardcore research that could offer some clues, but I don’t know about Ron. [laughs]

Laura: I don’t know. I think Ron gets underestimated a lot.

Andrew: Yeah, but whenever – when has he ever proven himself?

Laura: Maybe this will be the book where he does.

Andrew: I guess.

Ben: I hope so.

Andrew: That does wrap up our Book 7 discussion for this week. That actually went pretty well.

Ben: I enjoyed it.

Laura: Mhm.

Andrew: Yeah.

Laura: Fun stuff.

Ben: Send in your Book 7 things that you want to know or need to know, to mugglecast at staff dot mugglenet dot com – things for us to discuss that you think will be interesting.

Andrew: Right.

Spy On Spartz

Andrew: So, this week we are going to do something we haven’t done in a while – Spy on Spartz. We’re going to give Spartzy-boy a little ringy-ding-ding. See what’s going on.

[Emerson’s voicemail picks up]

Andrew: Oh. [laughs] Failure!

Laura: Darn.

[Emerson’s voicemail keeps playing]

Andrew: All right, Ben. We get it. Now leave a message.

[Ben hangs up on Emerson’s voicemail]

Ben: That’s too bad.

Andrew: Well, you should’ve left a message. All right, well, that’s a shame.

Ben: Here we go. Here – for every week that Emerson doesn’t answer his phone, we’re going to reveal a digit of his cell phone number.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: I love that.

[Micah laughs]

Ben: Okay, this week we’ll start off with 2. The starting number is 2. Okay?

Andrew: Oooh. Uh oh.

Ben: So Emerson, you’d better answer your phone, or you’re in trouble.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: Next week – the second digit. [laughs]

[Micah laughs]

Chapter-by-Chapter: Chapter 13, Sorcerer’s Stone

Andrew: All right. So, moving on now to Chapter-by-Chapter. Chapter 13 of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone titled “Mirror of Erised.” [laughs] No, sorry. I edited MuggleCast for too long last week. [laughs] Titled – actually, we’re going for a “Nicholas Flamel” this week. There must be a misprint in my book or something.

Chapter 13 – Nicholas Flamel

Eric: The chapter opens up and it mentions that ever since – Harry isn’t quite able to get over his whole experience in the previous chapter with the Mirror of Erised. In fact, something very, very distinguishably upsetting is accredited to his experience with the mirror. He now has dreams, nightmares of high, cackling laughter and green light and – so basically, ever since he saw the mirror, he’s having these nightmares of his parents’ death, the night of his parents’ death. And it’s heavily implied that they were triggered by his experience with the mirror.

Micah: The one thing that strikes me as odd here is – is Voldemort doesn’t seem like the type of guy, to me, that would be cackling.

Ben: Oh, he does to me.

Andrew: Why not? Yeah.

Micah: Yeah? I don’t know, I thought of witches as cackling.

Ben: Because he has the high-pitched laughter that probably can be described as a cackle.

Andrew: And Peeves cackles. Last time I checked, he’s a dude.

Ben: Yeah.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

The Dream

Ben: Yeah, oh and another thing is, I think the reason that the Mirror of Erised triggered Harry’s – the nightmares that he’s beginning to have is because when it’s a really emotional experience like he had when he saw his family again or whatever, it could probably psychologically trigger those things in his mind and cause him to have those nightmares. I mean, I’m no psychologist or anything, but that’s just my take on that.

Eric: Yeah. It makes logical sense, too – that that was the last time he saw his parents. That was the night that he no longer had a family.

Andrew: So, it’s interesting that the mirror triggered those memories. So, basically this starts off a long-running series of dreams.

Laura: So, do you guys think that…

Andrew: And painful – pains in his scar. Although that doesn’t relate. Sorry.

Laura: Do you guys think that going to Godric’s Hollow would have the same effect on Harry?

Andrew: Oooh.

Ben: Probably – that’s an interesting tie back to an earlier question, but yeah.

Andrew: Could it – if he saw his parents, could it bring back new memories?

Laura: Maybe.

Andrew: Hmmm.

Ben: Well, if he remembers, perhaps, his house…

Andrew: Right.

Ben: If his house is even standing. I guess they said it was destroyed. So, I don’t know.

Andrew: Even then, it could be something as simple as a tree that, for some reason could have stuck in his brain.

Ben: It could re-trigger those things.

Eric: He could remember picnicking.

Andrew: Because a flash of lightning hit it.

[Laura laughs]

Eric: He could remember picnicking in his little bonnet and Lily and James on a blanket. I actually want him to remember things like that. I think new memories are important. I think that might be one of the more reasonable ways in which he learns more about himself and his past, is if he remembers all these things from when he was not even a year old – things start coming back to him. We’ve seen the same – pretty much the same nightmare: green light and high laughter in almost every subsequent book since the first one. I mean, the Dementors bring it back in three and he is always seeming to be talking about it, so it would make, it would be a little – I guess it would be good if he got some new memories to think about.

Andrew: What else is interesting here is that these dreams start to disappear and Harry says that this is caused by being tired after Quidditch practices. Is it really the Quidditch practices and being tired that causes these dream to not occur?

Eric: I thought it would be the opposite.

Ben: I think so because if you have a deeper sleep…

Eric: Then you’re more prone to dreams.

Ben: …then you probably won’t – no, I don’t think you’re more prone. I think if you’re really tired where it’s not really that you -when it comes to the point where you unintentionally fall asleep, then I don’t really dream much.

Eric: Oh okay.

Andrew: Or do you not just remember? Do you dream every night?

Laura: You do. You always do.

Ben: You always do. Yeah, you always have a dream every night, but you just don’t remember it.

Andrew: I dream about you at night, Ben.

Ben: Oh, I know dude. I dream about you “U2” – U2 and you.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: [singing] Together, we’re together. Is it destiny?

[Ben hums City of Blinding Lights]

Laura: Yeah.

Eric: Oh my god.

Andrew: So…

Laura: Those are some dreams that I just don’t want to know about.

[Micah laughs]

Eric: Yeah, those are my nightmares.

Andrew: So… Oh, I do.

[Everyone laughs]

Quidditch Practice – The Solution To Nightmares?

Andrew: So, I’m thinking – maybe is it that Harry, he has his mind off of it? It’s not so much that he’s tired, he’s just thinking about other things.

Micah: Yeah, exactly. He’s thinking about Snape.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: No, no. [laughs]

Micah: His mind…

Andrew: What?

Micah: Well, not like that. Come on.

Andrew: No, no, I don’t – no, not Snape. I’m talking about Quidditch practice, wouldn’t he be thinking about that?

Micah: Well, yeah. Snape refereeing the match. All that kind of thing.

Eric: Okay.

Andrew: Oh.

Micah: He’s not as focused on the Mirror as he was before.

Andrew: Mhm. Yeah.

Micah: So, as the chapter goes along…

Ben: I’m fairly certain that nightmares are probably triggered by stress.

Laura: Mhm.

Ben: And so, when he’s put into a stressful situation or like I said, a strong sense of emotion over something.

Winning The House Cup

Andrew: So, let’s move along, Eric.

Eric: Page 216, they are talking about Slytherin and how it would be nice to win this Quidditch match against Hufflepuff because then they could overtake Slytherin for the House Cup. Now, as Ben brilliantly pointed out, out of the blue, it didn’t seem to me that the House Cup was even mentioned later on in the books. What it says is, Slytherin would be defeated for the House Cup for the first time in seven years. And we know, at the end of Book 1, they were. But, it seemed to me that – it made sense in my own little mind, while reading Harry Potter, we’d be reading years at Hogwarts where Gryffindor prevailed. And that every year Harry would bring about some sort of victory that would allow Gryffindor to win the House Cup for seven years. But, instead of getting this reassured, whole, “Oh, Harry’s going to change the world type thing,” I think the House Cup just stop being mentioned or the Quidditch Cup in some of the books. I mean the Quidditch – I mean we didn’t even have Quidditch in Book 4 and I guess some parts of Book 5, and Harry wasn’t even on it. So, the House Cup and the Quidditch Cup have kind of become really unimportant – like what House wins at the end of the year to me. I seemed to me we’d be seeing, since Jo mentioned that Slytherin had been winning for seven years straight, it seemed only appropriate she’d make an equally big deal about something else.

Andrew: I think that’s based off of two things: 1) that the story – Jo is putting more focus onto the darker side of things and there’s not as much fluff that was needed back in Sorcerer’s Stone. But at the same time I’m sure the students might not see it as – well, they might. Hmmm. I think they would see it because just like any teenagers – all teenagers are into sports.

Laura: Ummm.

Andrew: Well, then again, maybe wizards aren’t. [laughs]

Laura: No. [laughs]

Eric: Well, no.

Andrew: Well…

Eric: But I think enough are so that it comes over academics.

Andrew: Yeah, there would still be the same amount of hype every year. Maybe not all teenagers, but the same amount of hype that was in Book 1 would Book 6 because the same – there’s always a large amount of kids in it or into it.

Eric: Points still matter. It’s still a fun game and you don’t even need to play anything to be on this game, you just need to be a decent student, and occasionally succeed in front of a teacher that gives you points. I don’t necessarily recall, you know, Gryffindor not winning the House Cup, but I don’t remember it being mentioned besides Book 5, I think they won it. Laura, did they? Did you remember that?

Laura: I know they won the Quidditch Cup in Book 5, but I’m not necessarily sure about the House Cup. I think…

Micah: That’s interesting.

Laura: I think Eric, like what you said at the beginning, that we see these books through Harry’s eyes – I think that’s very important to remember because in this case Harry has more important things to be focusing on then the Quidditch Cup and the House Cup. So, for all we know it does have the same amount of hype and the other students do care just as much, but Harry is more focused on finding the Horcruxes.

Eric: Which makes perfect sense, but I don’t know. He didn’t have Horcruxes to deal with in any other book besides Book 6, in the same way other than Book 2.

Laura: Yeah, but he had Dementors and werewolf teachers.

Eric: Well usually, but usually at the end with the – Movie, sorry Book 5 was the first different book in the way that the ending wasn’t happy. Well, Book 4 wasn’t entirely either, but at the end of every book it seemed like they had this whole expository paragraph where JKR wrote things slowed down, they did well on their exams, and by the way Gryffindor won the House Cup. And by the way this happened and that sort of thing. Another year at the Dursley’s. And going to give Dudley a second… All this other stuff. It’s like this calm, peaceful thing at the end of each book, where she kind of sums up the last days of school and that kind of thing that happens. And that just stopped and it was kind of like the ending of Book 5. I don’t know how that happened, but it’s this whole destiny thing. And you’re right Laura, he’s more occupied with destiny and things, but there was always that kind of exposition at the end, where we knew where some things were stated about what happened at then end of the year, and during the banquet, and stuff, and during – to characters.

Nicholas Flamel

Andrew: All right, let’s move on to Nicholas Flamel now, because he’s the main subject of this chapter. We first find out about him – well, Harry finds out about him by, from all places the back of a Chocolate Frog Card, Dumbledore’s actually.

Ben: Twelve uses of dragon’s blood.

Andrew: Yes. So, we find out that Nicholas Flamel is the only known maker of the Sorcerer’s Stone. All right, well let’s get into a little history about good old Nick. Laura, you’ve done your research.

Laura: Yeah. Nicholas Flamel was a French alchemist of the 1400s and as quoted by Wikipedia, “Flamel is supposed to be the most accomplished of the European alchemists. It is claimed that he succeeded at the two magical goals of alchemy, supposed to have been the chief arms of that discipline. He made the Philosopher’s Stone that turns lead into gold and he and his wife Perenelle allegedly gained immortality.

Eric: Now, it’s important to notice to Laura, that this is actually – you’re reading from documented history, historical fact, British legend. As in this stuff actually happened and that Nicholas Flamel was at one point or another in real history, a real person, which is interesting to note because JKR used this true person, this true legend to sort of jump start her books. With this British legend she actually used it, and it’s based more on I guess history of our world more so than the other books.

Micah: Well, he’s mentioned in The DaVinci Code, isn’t he?

Eric: I think so.

Laura: Yeah, he’s mentioned in lots of books.

Eric: But no, this is the point and a while ago there were a few things that I read, and a few articles, which made a note of the fact that the first book is heavily detailed on actually – the actual history, and it incorporates the entire myth. And I was just wonder what you thought of that, because that was a great way, I think, for JKR to relate the Muggle world to the magical world, but also it’s just the fact that in the actual story. Nicholas Flamel was an actual guy. They don’t know if he actually achieved immortality, but it’s legend and so JKR just totally adopted this and used this for her book. And you know that didn’t happen later on. I mean everything relates to the real world, but I don’t know, guys! Other people were making a big deal about it, the fact that it was this huge real life occurrence and I thought I’d…

Ben: Well, just a little bit about how Laura brought up some information about Nicholas Flamel. I remember when I first got into Harry Potter, when I was analyzing the first book, basically on my own, and I was just going through things looking it over, and I did a Google search on Nicholas Flamel and I started looking up a ton of information on him, and he’s really an interesting guy. There are actually some people out there who believe that he’s still alive.

Laura: Yeah, there are people that claim that they’ve seen him.

Ben: [laughs] Kind of weird.

Eric: Yeah.

Ben: And that he’s living in a village in India.

Micah: He listens to MuggleCast.

Ben: [laughs] Yeah.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Eric: Ha, Nick listens to us.

Ben: He’s just an interesting guy. I think that it just made sense for Jo to use him because she’s talking about the substance that the Philosopher’s stone and Nicholas Flamel was indeed an alchemist and…

Laura: Yeah, I agree with that.

Ben: I don’t think it holds any further significance other than it just fit perfectly for what she needed.

Andrew: Yeah, definitely.

Ben: And don’t you guys think that if Nicholas Flamel was alive, he would sue Jo by now?

[Everyone laughs]

Ben: For using his name.

Eric: Yeah, Nicholas Flamel would have come forward, he would…

Andrew: If my name was in a huge book, I wouldn’t complain. Well, maybe I would if I needed some cash.

Ben: When you’re 700 years old, dude, there isn’t much for you to do.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: When you can make everything into gold, you don’t really need cash.

The Quidditch Match

Andrew: All right, so let’s move on to the Quidditch match, which takes a couple of interesting turns. Right before it, though, Harry makes a connection that it appears that Snape is following him around, but this can be attributed to, more or less, Snape possibly – [sigh] god, I just lost my train of thought.

Ben: Snape looking out for Harry as opposed to…

Andrew: Right, right.

Ben: …stalking him.

Micah: There’s actually two great lines on pg. 221 here, and you guys talked about this, I think, a couple weeks ago, but it does relate. It says, “Could Snape possibly know they’d found out about the Sorcerer’s Stone? Harry didn’t see how he could – yet he sometimes had the horrible feeling that Snape could read minds.”

Eric: Yeah, it’s Occlumency, or it’s another one of those things where it’s like – it’s heavily implied but at the same time, I don’t know. I mean, I think Snape would be able to tell that they knew about the Sorcerer’s Stone, but it makes it seem – I don’t know. It seems to me that Snape wouldn’t give Harry the same kind of levity that Dumbledore was, and Dumbledore and Snape presumably both, if this is Occlumency, know that Harry knows about the Sorcerer’s Stone. I think Snape would have – I don’t know. I was going to say I think Snape would come out and tell Harry not to go for it, like McGonagall did, but then again they suspect Snape of being a part of it. I don’t know. I just think that if Snape knew that Harry knew about the Sorcerer’s Stone, he would have taken other measures, and things would have gone a little bit differently.

Micah: Well, I’m just saying it’s something that sticks out in your mind when you’re going back and reading the books.

Eric: Oh, it really does.

Andrew: Now, moving along to the Quidditch match here – ah, shoot. I should have the page. Page 222, Fred Weasley says, “‘The whole school’s out there!’ said Fred [laughs] Weasley, peering out of the door. ‘Even – blimey – Dumbledore’s come to watch!’ Harry’s heart did a somersault. ‘Dumbledore?’ he said, dashing to the door to make sure. Fred was right. There was no mistaking that silver beard.” Why is everyone so surprised that Dumbledore has arrived? Okay, maybe…

Ben: Because he usually doesn’t show up for Quidditch matches.

Andrew: Okay, I get that, but why doesn’t he, and what makes this one so special?

Eric: So that – okay. Dumbledore’s at this Quidditch match, and Harry is relieved because he thinks, “Well, Snape can’t touch me.” Now, what – so they go out to the gates and they’re very enthusiastic, and it’s kind of, the game just flows, and within moments Harry has caught the Snitch. Now this is a little bit different, because it especially says in this book that the Snitch – nobody had ever remembered the Snitch being caught that fast in any Quidditch game and it occurred to me, “Guys, what do you think?” Dumbledore showed up at the Quidditch match! Is it possible in any which, way, shape or form – I said “witch.” Heh, that’s kind of funny – that Dumbledore would have influenced the outcome of the match and helped Harry find the Snitch within record time?

Andrew: Yeah.

Ben: No, no, no way.

Andrew: I think people may have been led to believe that, or Jo intended for people to be led to believe that, but I think Dumbledore was just there to protect Snape and that’s what – or protect Harry from something occurring again. Wouldn’t you guys agree?

Eric: Yeah, the answer…

Ben: I agree.

Eric: Well, it just made it an eerie kind of thing to pop in my mind, an eerie light bulb…

Andrew: It is weird.

Eric: …that says that, “Oh well, it’s strange that Harry should somehow go and be this super human Quidditch player, and catch the Snitch right away, beyond everybody’s record,” but later on I agree with you guys, because Dumbledore comes right up to Harry, pats him on the back, and says, “Good job.” And first of all, I doubt he’d do that if he fixed the game. And also, later on when he’s walking his broomstick back right before he sees Snape go into the forest, it says he is proud of himself for actually proving to the whole school that he can actually do something for himself. And that would be a little ironic if…

Ben: You make me sick. Insulting Dumbledore’s memory like that.

Eric: Well, no! It just seemed like Dumbledore was there, and there was this darling feat that happens and I was just…

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: …like what if he helped him? It didn’t seem likely afterward, so I – but I thought I’d mention it.

Ben: [imitating Dumbledore] “The Ministry does not want me to tell you that.

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: [imitating Dumbledore] But, I feel not telling you is an insult to Cedric’s memory!”


Micah: Well, I had one thing, if I could find it here real quick. Oh, it’s on pg. 226 when Snape is talking to Quirrell, and he says something about, “Once you’ve decided where your loyalties lie,” and I thought that was kind of kind of interesting because is this actual proof, all the way back in the first book, that Snape is truly on Dumbledore’s side?

Eric: I think it was interesting, because Quirrell says that Snape suspected him of being greedy, as in it for himself, so by Snape saying, “Where your loyalties lie,” he’s comparing Dumbledore or yourself like, “Quirrell, are you in this for yourself,” or that kind of thing. I don’t think it implies that he believes Voldemort is the other side, but at the same time Voldemort is on the back of his head and all sorts of other stuff, so Voldemort probably heard this whole conversation, and it’s a big headache. But in response to your question, I think it probably does relate that at least Snape is putting on a show as if he was Dumbledore’s loyalist servant, or loyalist person, loyalist friend. By him going and seeking out Snape – I’m sorry, seeking out Quirrell and saying, “Meet me in the Forbidden Forest. I’m going to freak you out and get you to confess your loyalties” or whatever, I think it seems very plausible that Snape is, indeed, a good guy by him doing this. And even by telling, asking Filch in the previous chapter to look out for people out of bed and doing things. I think Snape’s just genuinely concerned about the security of the stone.

Andrew: So, any other – anything else here?

Laura: Not that I can think of.

Andrew: All right! That just about does it for this week’s Chapter-by-Chapter. Next week, we will be discussing Chapter 14, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, titled “Norbert the Norwegian Ridgeback”. We’re only – we are in the home stretch now. We’ve got – we’re on Chapter 14, 15, 16, 17. We’ve got four more chapters to go, then we are [singing] done!

Eric: With the first book. One-seventh of the final, complete picture. And really, just a moment ago we were saying how, oh, we spend nine episodes out of 13 chapters. I think that’s a brilliant thing. I think that’s really good.

Give Me A Butterbeer – BitTorrent

Andrew: So this week, we are going to try something new that Ben’s been formulating in the back of his mind for a while. It’s called “Give Me A Butterbeer”!

Ben: Y’all ready for this?

Eric: It’s called “Give Me A Butterbeer”?

Ben: Yes. This – yes it is, actually. This segment is inspired by Mr. John Stossel, a co-anchor on ABC News’ 20/20. And I really liked watching it because he’d bring up an issue that’s just in society each week, and he would talk about it and explain how it’s completely bogus – and then at the end, he’d say, “Give me a break!” And so this is a spin-off off of that…

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: …relating directly to Harry Potter and things that people are concerned about. So, let’s go with week one. This time, I’m – this week we’re talking about internet movie piracy.

In a move to curb internet piracy this past week, Warner Brothers signed a deal with popular P2P client BitTorrent, allowing consumers to download hundreds of Warner Brothers productions legally. TV shows will start off at $1.00, and movies will be around the same price of a DVD rental.

The president of Warner Brothers stated:

“We’ve been struggling with peer-to-peer technology and trying to figure out a way to harness the good in all that the technology allows us to do. If we can convert 5, 10 or 15 percent of the illegal downloaders into consumers of our product, that is significant.”

WB believes BitTorrent will be able to curb privacy – piracy – by disabling the user from copying downloaded files by using two clever mechanisms: a password being entered to view the file, and the file can only be opened on the computer on which it was downloaded. This is directly from MuggleNet’s news.

Personally, I feel that Warner Brothers is fighting a losing battle here. Here’s a few statistics from the Motion Picture Association of America Between 115, 000 and 150, 000 movies are transferred across P2P networks in the United States each and every day. Each P2P client sharing content has an average of 10 infringing copyrighted movies. Each movie costs an average of $143 million to make and market, and around 60 percent of movies do not recover from investment. Well, we all know that the chances of Emerson marrying Melissa are actually greater than getting caught pirating movies.

However, although Harry Potter will still profit in the billions of dollars, I think it’s time for each Harry Potter fan to stop being cheap and go out and just buy the movie. I’m really not condemning people who pirate movies, but at least go out and buy the film in addition to downloading it. That’s what I know that many people have done. It will ease your conscience – and it could save you a $150,000 fine.

So, give me a Butterbeer.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Well said, Ben.

Ben: This is a segment I plan to do weekly, because I really enjoyed writing this, and – it’ll get more fluent as we go on. I just had some trouble there reading and got tongue-tied a bit. But anyways. Send in your emails to ben at staff dot mugglenet dot com – things you would like me to talk about, and furthermore, what you think about the segment and whether it should stay or whether it should go.

Eric: I think it’s probably one of our best segments. I think you did fine, Ben.

Andrew: Well, Eric – Eric’s in love with it already. [laughs]

Eric: I am in love. I think that’s brilliant.

Andrew: Not only do I like this title, I like the topic this week, because torrents have become such a facet to everyone who’s using computers these days. I mean, even my sister now is using them. I won’t say what for; [laughs] we don’t want to go there.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: But I think that BitTorrent is definitely the next way to go, especially with legal content. [laughs] There’s so much illegal content on BitTorrent right now, and honestly, I don’t think Warner Brothers is going to be able to pull this off because all these internet mediums always have a way of getting hacked.

Ben: Exactly.

Andrew: And I think…

Ben: It’s sort of…

Andrew: …this is just going to be another one.

Ben: It’s sort of like the battle that iTunes is fighting right now with their “You buy an mp3…”

Andrew: They do!

Ben: You buy an audio file from iTunes, then a lot of people are using ways to strip off the digital rights management, and then…

Andrew: There are ways, but it’s not occurring as much as it does on, like, BitTorrent.

Ben: Right.

Andrew: Or – well, I mean, we haven’t seen this before. We haven’t seen movies, especially like Harry Potter, being put on BitTorrent – sold on BitTorrent. So, it’s interesting; I don’t know if it’s going to work.

Ben: Yeah, we’ll see how it works out, because here’s the dilemma people are faced with. You buy it for a buck off BitTorrent, or you go download Bear Share, or…

Andrew: It’s only $1.00?

Ben: Well, it’s probably going to be more than that. You go buy it for $5.00 off BitTorrent, or that, or you go to Bear Share or Limewire or one of the other P2P clients and get it for free, and I just don’t know if…

Laura: And have the ability to send it to other people. So I – I just don’t see how they’re going to convert people.

Ben: And another thing is I think that it could – it could actually hurt them because people will be able to get better quality versions if they find a way to strip the digital rights management off of the video. [laughs] Isn’t that right?

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: Yeah.

Ben: People have better quality versions of a movie that they can distribute to others.

Andrew: Let me just – let me just say one last thing. The people who are downloading it over BitTorrent are the people who do not go out to see movies for one reason or another, and they like the movies. These are people who like Harry Potter, but they’re too embarrassed to go out to see it, and I honestly think that’s what it is. Because not many people – fans do not know how to use BitTorrent. Very, very few. And if they do, I’m sure they download it, but those who are downloading it for the reasons that the movie industry does not want them to, those are the people who are just, are too – honestly, I really think too embarrassed to see it. So, Ben?

Ben: Give me a Butterbeer.

Andrew: All right. [laughs]I’ll have one ready for you next week, but now it is time to move on to the voicemail questions.

Voicemail – Invisibility Cloak

[Audio]: Hey MuggleCast. My name is Lianella, and I’m from the Bronx in New York.

Andrew: Bronx!

[Audio]: I was listening to your Chapter-by-Chapter discussion about why James Potter would leave Dumbledore his Invisibility Cloak before he died. Well, I was thinking – do the Potters know of the prophecy? I mean, they went into hiding from Lord Voldemort, but now they had already twice – or three times, actually – you know, defeated or gotten away from the Dark Lord. So, I was wondering if Harry’s parents knew of the prophecy and that’s why they went into hiding, or were they just going into hiding because they were afraid because everybody else in the Muggle world – in the magical world – about what Lord Voldemort was doing. Thanks, love your show!

Andrew: I think they were just afraid.

Eric: Yeah, me too.

Laura: Ummm…

Eric: But I don’t know – as for whether or not Dumbledore told them about the prophecy or not, that’s a question I would ask because we have to assume that if Dumbledore would tell Lily and James about the prophecy that he would tell Frank and Alice Longbottom. And it’s – JKR said that Neville doesn’t know about the prophecy. It will be an interesting shock to him when he does find out, when Harry does tell him, because I assume it will be Harry that tells him. But, it’s not one of those things you’d find in the notes that Alice Longbottom gives to Neville every time they visit – she visits, you know, on the gum wrappers in St. Mungo’s. It’s just not one of those things. So, I don’t know if it would be – I don’t know if he would have told him. Do you think he would have told them?

Micah: I thought Dumbledore clearly said in Order of the Phoenix that he was the only one who knew the prophecy.

Eric: Well, Snape knew it.

Micah: Well, he knew part of it.

Eric: Yeah.

Micah: But Dumbledore was the only one who knew the full prophecy.

Eric: Did you guys – do you think that whole Snape being the person who listened to it – do you think that was an afterthought for JKR? Kind of seemed to come in there at the end.

Laura: I don’t think so.

Eric: That it was Snape.

Andrew: Ehhh.

Laura: No, I think that she’d always planned for it to be Snape. As for the Potters knowing about the prophecy, I think I agree with Micah on this, but I’m kind of wondering why they thought they were special – like, in the sense that they would need the Fidelius Charm and to go into hiding and stuff.

Eric: Well, they defied him three times. Nobody did that except the Longbottoms.

Laura: Well, so had Frank and Alice.

Eric: I mean, besides the Longbottoms. Like, they’re clearly – well, people mentioned that they were one of the foremost out-runners against Voldemort. They were one of the – they were in the Order, but they were also one of those people that – you know, the Bones, the McKinnins, all the great wizards of the age, as mentioned by Hagrid and other – countless other people. The Potters were famous before Harry. The Potters were famous before Harry, I strongly believe that, and they got a name from being particularly good at either fending off Voldemort or helping the good side, for their contributions just as Frank and Alice Longbottom.

Micah: I don’t necessarily think that they knew the prophecy; I think they might have been let in on certain pieces of information. Enough for them to know, but nothing in full.

Laura: Well, maybe they know what Snape knew.

Micah: Right.

Andrew: Maybe if the Potters knew too much, that would cause even worse consequences. So… Which could be the reason why they didn’t tell them. Let’s tune in to the next voicemail.

Voicemail – Alohamora

[Audio]: Hey guys, this is Maggie from Ohio, and I have a question. I’m currently rereading the Sorcerer’s Stone, and in Chapter Nine they use Alohamora to get into the forbidden third floor corridor, where of course they encounter Fluffy. I was just wondering, isn’t that kind of an easy way to get into a corridor that’s supposedly forbidden? I mean, Hermione’s a first-year and she knows Alohamora. Now, I know that Hermione’s like super smart, but I still think it’s a little easy to get into someplace that’s so dangerous.

Eric: I wanted to mention this in the Chapter-by-Chapter. There’s a point where they mention, after seeing Neville being put in the Leg-Locker Curse, that before the Quidditch match they are preparing to use that curse on Snape. And I put in my notes, and I think it’s rather significant even though it didn’t make it to general discussion list, that they actually – this is the first mention throughout the books that students are attacking teachers, and not only attacking teachers, but doing it with what would appear to be silly spells, like the Leg-Locker Curse.

Andrew: And first-years, of all people.

Eric: Well, the Jelly-Nose. Like the Jelly-Nose Curse. And they’re firing all these somewhat childishly conceived spells at these adults, and that was one of the examples. But, as for this question, Alohamora, yes, it does seem silly that this easy charm – that the third floor corridor wouldn’t be better protected than just by an Alohamora Charm that Hermione can read about in Year 3 or whatever Standard Book of Spells.

Andrew: So why? Why was it so easy? Why wouldn’t Dumbledore – is the real challenge getting past Fluffy? I mean, how hard is it?

Laura: If you don’t know what to do, I’d imagine it’s pretty hard.

Andrew: I guess, but if you can put the dog to sleep so easily…

Laura: Yeah, but that requires you knowing that you have to have music.

Andrew: You still got to lift him. Or move a paw at least. Yeah. I guess. But couldn’t a little bit of research have turned up something as simple as, “This kind of instrument makes dogs sleep, makes creatures sleep,” whatever.

Ben: Well, I don’t know.

Andrew: It’s like Snorlax…

Ben: What tickles…

Andrew: You have to play – it’s like… No, let me make a Pokémon reference here. It’s like Snorflax.

Laura: Oh my god. [laughs]

Andrew: Snorlax, yeah. You got to use the Pokéflute…

Eric: Snorlax!

Andrew: …to put the dude to sleep.

Eric: [growls] Snorlax.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: Was it the Pokéflute? Nine-year-olds, please e-mail me.

Micah: It was. I don’t know why I’m admitting this, but, yes, it was.

Andrew: Micah played his Pokémon cards.

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: Think about what’s behind the door, though. I mean, who cares if you get through it? You’re not getting anywhere else. I mean, I know you’re saying that you can play the whatever…

Andrew: Pokéflute?

Micah: …and it will fall asleep. Yeah, but how do you – you don’t know that. People who magically wander there.

Eric: Yeah.

Micah: Think about what lies beyond there.

Eric: I think it’s…

Micah: Granted, it should be a little bit more protected, but…

Eric: I think it’s the secret of the matter.

Micah: …you have a three-headed dog behind the door.

Eric: Yeah, it’s the secret of the matter that was the most guarded. Like, beyond the door, the actual secret to put Fluffy to sleep. It’s just a shame that Hagrid’s a “robusteous” drunk, but I think the secret was more guarded than the corridor for that same reason. Like, if you didn’t know…

Micah: And who knows, maybe Dumbledore actually expected people to listen to him?

Eric: And maybe he wanted Harry to find the dog and get his chance at the stone.

Andrew: Eh.

Laura: And get ripped to shreds because he didn’t know to play it to sleep.

Eric: And get ripped to shreds.

Micah: Yeah. That’s definitely it.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: It all comes back to the Pokéflute.

Voicemail – Harry’s Boggart

[Audio]: Hi, this is Andrew Evans from Miami, Florida, and I was wondering, in the third book, Harry’s Boggart was a Dementor. But, since he can repel them now without trouble, I don’t think he would fear them anymore. So, if he saw a Boggart now, what do you think he would see? Thanks.

Eric: I think – Harry wasn’t afraid of Dementors though, specifically. Like when he saw the Boggart in Book 3, he was afraid of Dementors, but the only reason his Boggart was a Dementor was because he was afraid of fear, and Remus says, “You fear fear itself.” So, even though he is scared of Dementors, and even though he’s conquered Dementors, he was never afraid of Dementors in the first place in the way that his Boggart would appear, so I think he’s still afraid of fear, does that make sense?

Laura: Yeah.

Eric: I think he would still see a Dementor, because he’s not afraid of Dementors, he’s just afraid of what they represent.

Laura: Well, that’s possibly the best way for a Boggart to represent fear, yes.

Eric: Like, that is the best representation it can do.

Show Close

Andrew: Well, boys and girls, I think that does just about do it for MuggleCast Episode 39. Oh, we’re 40 next week.

Laura: MuggleCast is going to start going gray.

Andrew: [laughs] Wouldn’t it be funny if every time our album art slowly started getting grayer and grayer?

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Chicken Soup For The MuggleCast Soul

Andrew: All right, let’s wrap up this week’s show real quick with a Chicken Soup For the MuggleCast Soul. This one comes from Cecily, 17, of Washington, DC. She writes:

Hello all, I wanted to thank you guys so much. A few months ago I was struggling with my weight. I bought a new exercise machine, but working out and staring into space was so BORING that I didn’t know how I could use it. Then I subscribed to MuggleCast. I am a huge Harry Potter, of course, and I found your show so interesting and each of you are so entertaining. I decided to listen to episodes of your show everyday while I worked out. Not only did it make time on the machine fly by, but it made me actually look forward to working out every afternoon. Here I am three months later and 15 pounds thinner. I couldn’t have done it without you. Thanks, MuggleCast!

Andrew: That’s a great one.

Laura: Awww.

Eric: You know, that’s freaking cool.

Andrew [Show Close with music in background]: Yeah, so, congrats, Cecily, on your weight loss. That does wrap up MuggleCast 39. We’ll see everyone next week for Episode 40.

Eric: Eric Scull, bye!

Andrew: Once again, I’m Andrew Sims.

Ben: I am Ben Schoen.

Laura: I’m Laura Thompson.

Micah: And I’m Micah Tannenbaum.

Andrew: Goodbye, everyone.

Ben: Goodnight.

Laura: Bye.


[Audio]: Hi MuggleCast, this is Mary Elizabeth, and I just turned 14 years old, and I live in Springdale, Arkansas, and I just wanted to say great show, and keep up the good work! Love you guys, and Laura, Kevin, Andrew, Ben, Jamie, Eric, Micah, and Laura. Love you, bye!

[Audio]: Hi, this is Angela from Virginia. Just wanted to say that MuggleCast is great. My husband and I have been listening for a couple of months. We’re big Harry Potter fans, and you guys are great. Thanks, bye-bye!

[Audio]: Hi MuggleCast, I’m Kristen.
[Audio]: I’m Casey.
[Audio]: And I’m Kirsten.
[Audio]: And we’re in our high-school’s production of the musical Les Misérables, and we have a long time to wait between the songs that we sing in, so we listen to MuggleCast while we’re waiting. It saves us from a long flow of desperate boredom.
[Audio]: And math homework.
[Audio]: So we just wanted to say thanks, and we love you guys. Oh, and, one more thing. Do me a favor.
[Audio]: Lose the tone.

[Audio]: Hey, this is Justine from [unintelligible]. I just wanted to thank you for [unintelligible]. I’ve been listening to this show every week. [the rest in unintelligible]


Written by: Micah, Jessica, Martina, Rhiannon, Roni, and Sarah