Transcript #40

MuggleCast EP40 Transcript


Ryan [Show Intro with music in background]: Because Harry Potter is for little kids too, this is MuggleCast – Episode 40 for May 21st, 2006.

Andrew: Oh, good job Ryan.

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Ben: Hello, Potterites! Welcome to MuggleCast – your Harry Potter podcast for the fans, by the fans, where we bring your everything from Dobby’s socks to your thoughts and a little bit of Spy on Spartz.

Andrew: [laughs] So, that’s what we’re doing this week. I’m Andrew Sims.

Kevin: I’m Kevin Steck.

Laura: I’m Laura Thompson.

Ben: And joining us this week?

Jess: Jess Costain.

Ben: Without further ado, let’s go to MuggleCast’s own Micah Tannenbaum for a look at this past week’s news.


JK Rowling, Stephen King and John Irving will be holding a press conference on August first in New York City, a few hours prior to the first benefit performance of their charity reading event. The conference will take place at 10 AM at Radio City Music Hall.

Several actors and actresses from the Harry Potter films have been nominated for the 60th annual Tony Awards including Ralph Fiennes and Jim Dale. For a complete list, head over to

The winners will be announced on June 11th on CBS.

Reuters reported earlier this week that The Chronicles of Narnia DVD has sold 11 million copies, beating Goblet of Fire which holds just under 10 million sales. Of interest, Narnia was released on DVD nearly a month after Goblet of Fire went on sale. Don’t forget: You can find complete details on the fourth film’s digital video disc on our Goblet of Fire DVD page.

According to a report released by the Book Industry Study Group, publishers generated $34.6 billion in 2005, up 5.9 percent from the previous year. 3.1 billion books were sold last year, up 3.8 percent from 2004. The strongest growth occurred in juvenile books, which sold $3.34 billion in 2005. The release of the sixth book in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, accounted for the majority of the boom.

At the National Press Club’s Audie Awards in Washington DC Friday night, Half-Blood was entered into the Audio Publishers Association’s brand-new Hall of Fame. Half-Blood Prince is the very first book to have been awarded with this prestigious honor. The book was narrated by Jim Dale for Listening Library.

As part of her 80th birthday celebration, the Queen of Britain will hold a massive party at Buckingham Palace on June 25th to celebrate children’s literature, both new and old. JK Rowling, along with several characters from reknowned children’s novels, will be in attendance. Jo will read from the sixth Harry Potter book before a show featuring dozens of the best-loved children’s characters. The Daily Telegraph has opened an exciting competition in which you could win a ticket to the party, but you must be British and aged 4-14 to enter.

Dan Radcliffe has made Teen People’s watch list for one of the “25 Hottest Stars Under 25” for 2007. The page includes a small note about Dan’s new film December Boys and the fifth Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

And several of the stars from Harry Potter films have been named to Netscape’s list of 15 of the UK’s finest. Ralph Fiennes (Voldemort) came in at #8 and Dan Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint were as one ranked ninth on the list. Clive Owen and Keira Knightley took the top two spots.

Sony Pictures Classics has purchased the North American film rights to Rupert Grint’s new film Driving Lessons. No release date has been set.

Finally, last October, the flying Ford Anglia used in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was mysteriously stolen from Southwest Film Studios in St. Agnes. On Wednesday, the stolen car turned up (I’m sorry about the rearview mirror) at Carn Brea Castle, a 14th-century stone twin-towered fortress near Falmouth, Cornwall.

That’s all the news for this May 21st, 2006 edition of MuggleCast. Back to the show.


Ben: So, we have a new face in the crowd this week. Jess, you’re new to this. What exactly do you do around MuggleNet? Go ahead and introduce yourself.

Jess: Well, I used to work in the Fan Fiction section for over a year. And, since then I have been doing work on MuggleNet’s Gallery and other, just various pages – whatever I can scrounge that the other staffers haven’t already taken.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: Gallery, huh? What gallery?

Ben: What gallery?

Andrew: What unspeakable gallery? [laughs]

Jess: Sure. Yeah, the one that doesn’t load on all the pages.

Ben: You heard it here first.

[Everyone laughs]


Ben: Okay, we have a few announcements for you this week. Go ahead and buy your MuggleCast T-shirt. If you haven’t bought one yet, go buy one now. Buy 12 – buy one for each member of your family, at least five of your friends. Just go out and buy your MuggleCast T-shirt. And we have good reason why you need to buy one, though. Right, Andrew?

Andrew: Well, right. It’s really important that everyone purchases a T-shirt by Tuesday, [fakes coughs], my birthday, because Muggle…

Kevin: [fake coughs] Not important.

[Ben laughs]

Andrew: …National Wear Your MuggleCast T-Shirt Day is coming up on June 2nd. What does National Wear Your MuggleCast T-Shirt Day mean? Well, two weeks ago I explained to everyone that I went to Congress and I got this new bill signed that states that: “June 2nd of every year is now National Wear Your MuggleCast T-Shirt Day.” So, everyone needs to purchase their T-shirts and take a picture of yourself wearing it on June 2nd. And then we’ll post them on the site and we’ll randomly pick five of them, and then they will win our Lumos 2006 shirt before it even comes out. Well, before Lumos even happens.

Ben: Yeah. [laughs]

Andrew: So, it’s really, really, really cool shirt and we’re really excited about it.

Ben: So yeah, everybody go out and participate, take a picture of yourself wearing your MuggleCast T-shirt.

Andrew: Tuesday is the deadline if you want to get them by June 2nd – May 26th is the complete, last, last chance deadline.

Ben: Cutoff.

Andrew: But chances are if you order after the 23rd, you might not get the shirt in time.

Ben: No guarantee. Remember that.

Andrew: Right.

Listener Rebuttal – Pokeflutes

Ben: Okay, well I think that wraps up the announcements. It’s time for this week’s listener rebuttals. Pokeflutes, how do you say it?

Andrew: Pokeflutes.

Ben: Pokeflutes.

Andrew: Pokeflutes.

Ben: Pokeflutes? Pokeflutes awake Snorlax, they don’t put them to sleep. Andrew, do you care to explain? [laughs]

Andrew: [laughs] Well, yes I do, Ben.

[Ben laughs]

Andrew: You were on last week’s show weren’t you?

Ben: Uhhh, I think – I think I got put to sleep. I don’t know. [laughs] I don’t remember.

[Kevin laughs]

Andrew: [laughs] You don’t remember the Pokeflutes? Oh, whatever. Anyway, so last week I brought up that I was testing my Pokemon knowledge by saying that the Pokeflute would be useful in a situation with Fluffy.

Ben: Got to catch ’em all!

Andrew: Or I said something like that.

Ben: Got to catch ’em all!

Andrew: Yeah. [singing] Got to catch ’em all. Go to… Oh, I can’t remember. Forget it! [laughs] So…

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: So, I said that Pokeflutes put Snorlax to sleep, but actually Pokeflutes awake Snorlax. I can’t believe I screwed that up.

Ben: Oh geez.

Andrew: I’m really sorry. I can’t even begin to count how many e-mails we got on that this week.

[Ben and Kevin laugh]

Andrew: So, thanks to everyone who e-mailed in with all your Pokemon knowledge.

Kevin: Yep.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: I should have quizzed my little brother and my neighbor that goes “Pika, Pika” running around the neighborhood for some weird reason.

Listener Rebuttal – Baby Harry

Ben: Okay, let’s move on to our next listener rebuttal.

Hi, my name is Melissa, I’m 16 and from Montreal, Canada. I was listening to Episode 39 earlier, and while you guys were talking about how Harry wouldn’t be able to remember anything about Godric’s Hollow, a sudden realization hit me. Harry has said before that he only remembers a blinding green light. Now, I’m not sure about this, but WHAT IF Harry takes the Pensieve, concentrates really hard on that memory, and tries to extract it? Do you think he’d be able to see a bit about what went on that night 15 years ago? And if he did, do you think there might be something that would help him find a Horcrux?

Well, I think that if Harry is able to extract the memory that I – oh, to preface this a little bit, psychologists say that the memories do exist somewhere in your brain and it’s just channeling them and being able to remember them. So, if Harry is somehow able to suck the memory out with his wand or whatever and put it into a Pensieve, then he probably will be able to look at it from a new perspective that he’s never seen before. In terms of that helping him find a Horcrux, I’m not so sure. What do you guys think?

Laura: You pretty much summed up my thoughts. I have to say I agree with that.

Andrew: Yeah.

Jess: Yeah.

Andrew: Well, what about the Horcrux part of it? I mean…

Ben: It’s possible, but…

Laura: I think that would be too easy.

Andrew: Yeah.

Ben: There may be some clues, but…

Andrew: I mean…

Ben: …it’s not like he’s going to say, “Oh my gosh, there’s one of my dirty diapers – it’s a Horcrux! You know? [laughs]

Andrew: Yeah.

[Laura laughs]

Kevin: Yeah, but at the same time, how much perspective does a baby have on a situation? Because he remembers a blinding green light, but he’s in a crib.

Andrew: That’s true.

Kevin: So, all he remembers is a crib.

Jess: Yeah.

Kevin: How will that help him?

Ben: That’s true.

Laura: Mhm.

Ben: I don’t know.

Andrew: Good point.

Ben: I don’t really see it playing too much of a factor.

Andrew: The Horcrux is in the crib.

Ben: Yeah. [laughs]

Jess: Unless Voldemort turned Harry’s crib into a Horcrux.

Andrew: Oh yeah. There you go.

Ben: Thanks a lot! You guys are the best! Keep up with the good work! Melissa.

Laura: Awww!

Listener Rebuttal – The Potters And The Prophecy

Ben: Okay, our next listener rebuttal is from Caroline from Missouri.

Mugglecasters, last week you talked about if Lily and James knew about the prophecy. On pg. 204 of Prisoner of Azkaban, where Fudge is talking in the Three Broomsticks, Fudge says, “Not many people are aware that the Potters knew You-Know-Who was after them. Dumbledore, who was of course working tirelessly against You-Know-Who, had a number of useful spies. One of them tipped him off, and he alerted James and Lily at once. He advised them to go into hiding.” So, James and Lily might not have known the ENTIRE prophecy, but they did know they were marked and went into hiding because of the prophecy itself, not just because they had survived Voldemort three times. Thanks, Caroline!

Andrew: So, there we go. That answers last week’s question…

Ben: She raises a good point, though.

Andrew: …that we were asking ourselves.

Laura: Yeah.

Ben: Well, she raises a good point about how they knew the reason they went into hiding was because of the prophecy in an indirect way – not only because they had thrice defied Voldemort.

Andrew: Oh yeah.

Ben: But, thanks for that, Caroline. Now moving on to the next listener rebuttal.

Listener Rebuttal – Godric’s Hollow

Ben: This comes from Lauren from Long Island. Kevin used to live there. [laughs]

Kevin: Yes, I did.


In Episode 39, you were talking about Godric’s Hollow and why Harry would go there and how he knew where it was. In Half-Blood Prince, in the chapter entitled “The White Tomb,” Harry says “For me, it started there, all of it. I’ve just got a feeling I need to go there. And I can visit my parents’ graves. I’d like that.” I think he is just guessing that they are buried there, and hoping that also. I don’t think he hopes to find a Horcrux, just that he feels like he should start his search where all of this started. Thanks! I love you guys (and girl)!

See Laura, you weren’t left out.

Laura: Awww!

[Ben laughs]

Laura: I feel loved.

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: But anyway…

Laura: But yeah, I agree with Lauren 100 percent. I think that’s pretty much what a couple of us…

Ben: Yeah, she’s right.

Laura: …were saying last week, so it’s really good to see that reflected.

Ben: There was one dissenter in the group, but…

Laura: Oh, but…

Ben: …he’s not with us this week.

Laura: No, we love Eric.

Ben: Awww, poor Eric. Okay, well that sums up the listener rebuttals.

Andrew: Starting next week we’re going to try something new with our Listener Rebuttals. After listening to this week’s show, send in a voice rebuttal for us to play in our new, quote on quote, Rebuttal Montage. You can send these in by Skyping the username Mugglecast, or calling our hotline at 1-218-20-MAGIC. Please send these – please send these to us in the form of a comment rather than a question. Rebuttal questions can still be sent in via email to mugglecast at staff dot mugglenet dot com.

MuggleCast’s Mid-life Crisis

Ben: So, yeah. So, Andrew. We reached the milestone this week – this show. It makes me so sad.

Andrew: We did?

Ben: Yes. It’s almost time for a mid-life crisis, I’m thinking.

[Everyone laughs]

Ben: We’re forty. We’re forty!

Andrew: I don’t know, I think it happened earlier this week. It must be a sign. We’re on our way to eighty.

Ben: We’re forty.

[Andrew laughing]

Ben: Forty episodes. I remember when we thought ten was a lot. When me, you, and Kevin were like, “Yeah! We made it ten episodes!”

Andrew: Yeah.

Ben: “We’ve made it so far!”

Kevin: It’s true.

Andrew: Forty weeks is a lot. I mean, we started this show back on August 4th, and we skipped two weeks. So, what do you guys think?

Ben: We’re going to keep going strong.

Kevin: I think we’re old.

Andrew: It’s fun.

Laura: Well, I’m only 31.

Andrew: When did you start, Laura? Like Episode…

Laura: Like 9.

Andrew: You started on Episode 9?

Laura: Or 8. Something like that. So…

Andrew: Well, I know Eric came on on like 4 or 5.

Laura: I’m not old yet.

Andrew: And Jamie came in on 4 or 5.

Ben: He came in the same time. Yeah, he came in on the same time as Eric. Jeez, it’s been quite the ride.

Andrew: I don’t know if we’ve mentioned it on the show yet, but MuggleCast 50 is perfectly timed with our one year anniversary of releasing the first show. Which, like I said, was on August 4th.

Ben: Well, theoretically it should be 52. [laughs] If it was a year.

Andrew: Yeah. Well it’s going to be our 50th episode because we skipped two weeks. But, the plan is, that during Vegas, since we’re all going to be there: me, Laura, Kevin, Eric, Jamie…

Ben: Just forget about me. Just forget about me.

Kevin: Not Ben.

Andrew: I was getting to you. I was getting to you. We’re all going to meet up in a little room…

Ben: Save the best for last.

Andrew: …kick all the Leaky and other MuggleNet people out – sorry, Jess. Are you even – are you coming, Jess?

Jess: Yep, I’m coming.

Laura: She’s rooming with me.

Andrew: Sweet.

Jess: I’m going to be there.

Laura: It’s going to be awesome.

Andrew: We’re all going to gather into one little room. We’re going to kick all the MuggleNet and Leaky people out, and we’re going to record our one year anniversary special, Episode 50. It’s great timing. Only ten more episodes. So, we just wanted to thank everyone for making it through 40 episodes of us blabbing and – here’s to forty more.

Ben: Yeah, here’s to forty more. [Goes into song] My next forty episodes, I’m going to watch my weight. Eat a few more salads, not stay up so late.


Character Discussion – Lucius Malfoy

Ben: Sorry, I got a bit carried away there. Without further rambling, let’s move on to this week’s Character Discussion. It’s back this week. Last week we talked about Book 7 and things relating to it, and now we’re going to continue to alternate and this week it’s back to the Character Discussion. And it’s Lucius Malfoy. Just a little bit of information about Mr. Lucius: He’s forty-three years old, he was born in 1954. He is, of course, in Slytherin House. He’s a Death Eater who is very skilled in the Dark Arts. According to Voldemort, Lucius always took the head in Muggle tortures, something at which he undoubtedly excelled. Lucius is also an expert at manipulating people. Am I the only one who used to call him Lucius? [pronounces it Lu-chus]

Andrew: I did.

Kevin: I did too, yeah.

Jess: Oh, no, I do that all the time.

Ben: Yeah, Lucius Malfoy has white-blonde hair and cold gray eyes. His face is very pale and pointed. Lucius is a wealthy man who uses his wealth to influence people. He is arrogant, calculated, and used to getting his own way at any cost. Of course, he’s a pureblood and the Malfoy heritage goes way back. In terms of the Harry Potter books, his first mention was in Sorcerer’s Stone, Chapter 5 – which we’ve already been over – and his first appearance didn’t actually happen until Chamber of Secrets in Knockturn Alley. This information comes from MuggleNet’s Encyclopedia, which – part of which, this article was written by Laura. Ooo.

Andrew: Ooo.

Laura: Oh yeah, I remember that now.

[Kevin laughs]

Laura: I had forgotten I’d done that. Cool.

How Great was Lucius’ Influence?

Ben: So, we have a series of questions that we want to talk about. The first one being: Was Lucius the prime influence in the Ministry’s beliefs on Voldemort returning? Because we all know that he and Cornelius Fudge were like two peas in a pod, and if he really wanted to, he could use his influence to say, “Fudge, you know Dumbledore’s way out there.” What do you guys think?

Laura: I think it’s entirely possible that he is kind of another one of Fudge’s puppet-masters, and the fact that he sits there and tells him what he thinks Fudge needs to believe in order to benefit his and Voldemort’s cause. And I think that he probably had a huge hand in Fudge’s blatant denial that Voldemort had returned.

Andrew: True that.

Kevin: I think he was a factor in it, but I don’t think he was the sole reason why Fudge was…

Ben: Right. Fudge was also in denial, just in general because…

Kevin: Exactly, he was, yeah.

Ben: Because he didn’t…

Jess: I agree. I don’t think Fudge needed much help.

Ben: He didn’t choose to recognize the threat that was there. It’s because he wouldn’t have to deal with it.

Kevin: Exactly. He’s sort of a ditz.

Laura: But Fudge listens to whatever anyone tells him.

Ben: Not necessarily, but…

Kevin: Not necessarily.

Ben: No, if that was the case, he would have believed what Dumbledore was saying.

Kevin: Dumbledore. Exactly.

Laura: No, but at the time, he had started…

Andrew: Dumbledore’s a different case.

Laura: Yeah, he’d started having his own feelings of dislike towards Dumbledore at that time, and he was also spending more time around Lucius.

Ben: Well, but the point is, if you think about it – okay, this is the most evil wizard there has been since Grindelwald – before Grindelwald – the past century they said. Okay, would you really want him returning on your watch and having to be held accountable for it? For example, at the opening of Half-Blood Prince, we see where Fudge sort of – it all comes back to bite him because he has to go to the Muggle Minister and say, “The bridge wasn’t taken out by a storm; it was done by Giants,” and stuff like that.

Laura: Mhm.

Ben: Wasn’t it? Yeah.

Laura: Of course. On top of the fact that he doesn’t want to deal with it, he’s got Lucius sitting behind him saying, “Oh, Dumbledore’s wrong.” So, I think that he probably had a much larger impact than we probably could have imagined at the time.

Ben: Well, yeah, and especially since Draco’s always boasting about how his father is friends of the Ministry and whatever. So…

Kevin: That’s true, yeah.

Ben: That can always help out. We didn’t really see much of Lucius in Book 6. I mean, was he even there at Hogwarts? I don’t think he was, was he?

Laura: No.

Ben: So…

Andrew: Well, I think his whole purpose in Book 6 [coughs] was at the very beginning.

Ben: Right.

Andrew: Oh, when he’s mentioned.

What Will Lucius’ Role in Book 7 Be?

Ben: So, do you think that he’s going to play an important role in Book 7? Or a role at all?

Kevin: Oh, absolutely.

Laura: Mhm.

Kevin: Without a doubt.

Laura: I don’t know about a big role…

Ben: I think he’s going to get the axe.

Laura: Yeah, I think so as well. I don’t know about a big role concerning the final outcome of the story, but I think we’re definitely going to find out what his fate is. It would be kind of pointless if we had all of this lead-up from all of the books: him getting thrown into prison, finding out that Voldemort is ticked off enough to assign his son a task that could ultimately end up with his death, and then not have anything happen to him in the seventh book.

Kevin: Right.

Ben: Mhm. I feel like it may just be an after-thought, though, towards the end where Jo’s wrapping all of it up, she’ll say…

Kevin: Well, see the reason why I wouldn’t think that is because of the way they developed him as a…

Ben: Bad guy?

Kevin: A bad guy, exactly. Harry almost despises him as much as he despises Malfoy and Voldemort. So…

Andrew: From the beginning, too.

Kevin: Exactly. So, just a build-up to that tends to make me think that she’s going to at least show him getting the axe or his role in…

Ben: Right.

Kevin: …the whole battle.

How Did Lucius Become School Governor?

Ben: That’s definitely true, and something that we mentioned with the first question about him influencing Fudge, is that Lucius appears – well, prior to it being exposed that he was a Death Eater and him getting sent to Azkaban, he really had a lot of sway and power in the magical community. And in Book 3, we saw that he was a school governor – or in Book 2, excuse me – that he was a school governor, and he led to the first signs of political corruption in the Ministry and all these things. And how do you think someone like Lucius would become a school governor?

Laura: I think that someone like Lucius would become school governor in the same way that corrupt people do in real life, because…

Kevin: Of course, yeah.

Laura: I actually – where I live, we have a man, whose name I will not mention, who everybody sees as this very – he’s just this great guy and all this other stuff, and he’s involved in all these different county activities, but he’s really a big jerk. And it’s like no one wants to believe it and no one wants to admit to it, but he’s really mean to people and they just don’t want to see it and it’s just because people don’t want to admit that someone that is seen as so saintly, is actually a bad person.

Ben: Right, because he has the perception that he does his best to live up to as a respectable man. But you know of course there’s the people who realize – who see him for what he really is, which is a scumbag.

Laura: Mhm.

Ben: And it’s kind of hard to tell those people no when the time comes. Especially since he could be torturing your family for votes or whatever [laughs], just to become part of the school governor’s board.

Laura: Well, we saw it – I think it was either at the end of Goblet of Fire or sometime in Order of the Phoenix, when one of Fudge’s defenses for the Malfoys was they donate to countless charities and people do not want to believe that someone who, say, is donating to a good cause, they can’t sit there and say – they don’t want to believe that person could be bad.

Ben: Right. ‘Cause something…

Laura: Because it’s almost like dirty money that they’re giving to that charity.

Ben: Right, this is kind of funny that last week I continually rehashed the terrorism parallel. Something that’s really interesting is that Osama Bin Laden has donated literally millions upon millions of dollars to Islamic charities in the Middle East – which goes to show that even just because you donate money or whatever, there still could be corruption there.

Kevin: Oh, of course, yeah.

Laura: Well, and I mean, Osama Bin Laden was trained by America. [laughs]

Ben: Exactly.

Laura: We trained him and the wizarding world trained Voldemort. So, I mean, you see countless – I’m not sure that they’re intentional parallels, but you see a lot of connections with the corruption in government, not stating anything specific, however.

Lucius as a Vicious Father

Ben: Yeah, we’ve seen how Lucius has been – how he is politically in terms of Cornelius Fudge and his position – and abusing his position on the Governor’s Board. But as a parent, he seems to be a vicious father, especially towards Draco. Do you guys have any idea why he’s so hard on Draco?

Andrew: Well, yeah. He wants Draco to be the best. I mean, isn’t that the signs of like every parent who wants their child to be the best? They’re really rough on them and if you get a bad grade, you’re grounded for weeks. And I can draw that connection to people, over on me. Like, their parents see they get one bad grade and you’re grounded or you lose your cell phone, or iPod, or whatever…

Ben: Absolutely.

Andrew: And by bad grade, I mean like a “C”…

Ben: A “B.”

Andrew: Or, even a “B,” yeah. It drops, so I think that’s why.

Ben: Yeah, that does explain why he would be so hard on him.

Jess: Well, to cut in, I think he also wants a suitable heir. He didn’t have any other children, so this is his one shot to protect the Malfoy fortune and fame and et cetera, et cetera.

Laura: Yeah, I agree with that 100 percent.

Jess: He doesn’t want Draco to just be a…

Ben: Yeah.

Jess: …wayward son, no matter how good his grades are, so he has to keep a tight leash.

Laura: Yeah, that’s true.

Kevin: He’s also making sure that Draco believes in what he believes so that he can continue that legacy.

Ben: That’s that.

Andrew: I think he’s accomplished that.

Laura: Do you think that – I mean, we’ve obviously seen some faltering on Draco’s part. Do you think that maybe from a young age, Draco exhibited some kind of rebellious nature towards Lucius and that’s why he’s so hard on him?

Ben: Well, I think it was in Sorcerer’s Stone, or maybe it was just the movie, but either in the movie or the book, Draco says that he’s going to “bully his father” – that was in, yeah it was in the book actually – he was…

Laura: Yeah.

Ben: …going to bully his father into buying him a broom. So it seems like there might have always been a continuous power struggle between the two and that may have led to why Lucius, the more powerful of the two, is being so controlling and so hard on his son.

Laura: Which is interesting because then that means that he feels threatened by Draco.

Ben: Yeah, that’s true.

Andrew: So could that mean he knows something about Draco that we don’t know yet?

Laura: I just think that – I mean, Draco’s not stupid. We know that he’s not and I think that Lucius sees that in his son. And I think, above anything, he fears his heir going to the good side or not being an active participant in Voldemort’s inner circle.

Andrew: So, he has to give him what he wants and he has to have respect for him.

Ben: What if Draco ends up killing his father in the end? I could see that happening. Because, you know throughout the books, there has always been people who killed their fathers. Like, Voldemort killing his dad and Barty Crouch Jr. killing his dad. I don’t know, I’m just saying that maybe Draco will finally be fed up with all of his dad’s crap and just…

Kevin: Yeah, but you have to remember Draco’s hesitation at trying to kill Dumbledore.

Ben: Right, but that’s because he’s the only person that Voldemort’s ever feared. I mean, I’d be terrified too, even though he didn’t have a wand on him, Dumbledore is very powerful and that would be…I’d be scared. [Laughs]

Laura: But still, can’t you agree with the fact that there are people who do get brought up by bad parents and throughout the rest of their lives – just because that person is their parent, they can’t turn them away ever. So, I can almost see Draco being too scared of his father, even after he’s grown up and even after everything has happened and whether or not he’s proven himself – I can see him just always being – having this irrational kind of fear of Lucius.

Jess: That’s true; however, I think by Book 7, he’ll have had enough time to build up the resentment towards his father for putting him in this situation where he had to flee with Snape after not being able to kill Dumbledore and having Snape to do it for him and I think there will at least be a big confrontation between the two of them, no matter what side Draco ends up being on.

Kevin: Me too, yeah.

Lucius, Fudge, and the Ministry

Ben: But, looking back on the earlier books, we talked a little bit earlier in the discussion about how Lucius has sort of become one of – it should be Fudge has become one of Lucius’ puppets and basically he has a lot of influence in the Ministry. And it’s important to bring up, that especially in Books 3 and 4 where we see Fudge station Dementors around the building – who are known for their loyalty to Voldemort – around Hogwarts and to bring one with him for protection against Barty Crouch Jr. It seems to me like Lucius is another one of Fudge’s puppet-masters. After all, who else would want to make sure that the only witness – that Crouch Jr. couldn’t testify. And it makes sense that, because we know in Book 4, the Dementor sweeps in, sucks his soul out and that’s the end of it. You know that they wanted to make sure they have absolutely all the information extracted from him. Because, imagine how vital of a witness that Barty Crouch Jr. could have been. Doesn’t it almost make you think that Fudge could be evil just out of sheer fact that Crouch Jr. – he was involved in this elaborate plan to steal Harry Potter and he knew what the Dark Lord is doing, what his next move is and it just seems stupid to me to kill him.

Laura: I don’t think Fudge is evil; I think he is ignorant and I think that he’s incompetent. I don’t think he had any clue what he was doing when he brought…

Kevin: Yeah, I don’t think he’s evil either.

Laura: …the Dementor in with him. I think…

Ben: And do you think that Lucius is the reason that he did it, though?

Laura: Yes, I think he is. I think he…

Jess: Yes.

Laura: …absolutely is. Because if they had been able to make Crouch Jr. testify, then everything would have been out in the open so much earlier. And, I can completely 100 percent see Lucius saying, “He’s a dangerous Death Eater, you need to take this Dementor in with you.” And who better for a Dementor to obey, but a Death Eater who had been in Voldemort’s inner circle to say “Suck out his soul the minute you get in there.”

Ben: Mhm. That’s definitely true. And we’ve continually seen Lucius’s impact in terms of the Ministry. For example, another tie that could possibly be made – in Book 5, Umbridge mentions that she passed regulation two years ago, the time of Order of the Phoenix, making it nearly impossible for werewolves to find work. And this is right around when Snape let it slip to the Slytherin students that Lupin is a werewolf. All this is going on while Lucius is trying to have Buckbeak executed for school safety. Perhaps Dolores Umbridge wasn’t quite as independent with all of her regulations and decrees as she would have liked us to think. So, what do you guys think? Do you think it’s possible that Lucius pretty much told Umbridge, “Hey, this might be a good idea to make these regulations?”

Laura: I think that he definitely had a hand in some of the things that she did throughout the course of Book 5, yes. Absolutely.

Kevin: See, the thing is, I don’t – I think you’re giving him a little too much credit, though. Even on the account of Fudge, I don’t think he was the sole reason why Fudge did what he did. You have to remember Fudge is a political figure, and as a political figure, you’re also taking pressure from your people and the people don’t want to believe that Voldemort is alive again.

Laura: Yeah, but the people also don’t want to believe that Lucius Malfoy is a bad guy.

Kevin: Exactly, but I think he planted the seed, but he didn’t – he wasn’t the sole reason.

Laura: I don’t know, I think Lucius definitely took advantage of the fact that Fudge can be used as a pawn so easily.

Ben: Yeah, he’s…

Laura: I mean, he’s like a pawn in a place of power. It’s really scary.

Ben: I just wish we were talking about the character biography for Lucius Malfoy – how he is very manipulating, and he’s very cool and calculating in the moves that he makes.

Kevin: Well, that’s what I’m saying. He’s calculated but you have to remember: even when there is political corruption, the person who is doing the corrupting is usually very discreet. He’s planting seeds and he’s letting people run with these ideas, but he’s not physically manipulating because when it is found out that they were wrong, he would be the person that would get the attention.

Ben: They would – yeah, that’s true too. Kevin brings up a good point.

Kevin: So what I’m saying is that I think that Lucius planted seeds around the Ministry, but I do not think that he was…

Ben: The sole…yeah.

Kevin: …saying…exactly.

Ben: And, another incident that happened in Book 5 was we saw that the two Dementors showed up at Privet Drive and Umbridge took all the credit for it. Do you think Lucius could have played a role in that also? I think we might be accusing him of too much…

Kevin: That’s what I’m saying, yeah.

Ben: We know he’s a bad guy, but I don’t know if it makes sense to blame all the bad things that have happened on that one person. Do you guys think there’s any connection, though?

Jess: I think he made many charitable donations to organizations and people other than organized charities, let’s just put it that way.

Laura: Yeah, that I could definitely agree with. I can’t say that I’m 100 percent either way on Lucius having had a hand in the Dementors coming to Privet Drive. I think it all really depends on how much attention Dementors would have paid to a Ministry official, because we really don’t know how good their reasoning process is. I mean, can they tell the difference between someone who is not on the bad side but they’re not necessarily good or do they just see it in a very black and white way? Like, “You’re not a Death Eater; therefore, I don’t obey you.” But, I’m really not 100 percent on that, so.

How Loyal is Lucius?

Ben: That’s definitely true. Another thing is Lucius appears to be one of – well he, at one time, at least, he was one of the higher-ranking Death Eaters in Voldemort’s circle. Do you still think that he was really faithful to Voldemort and it appears that he may have his own agenda for power. What do you guys think?

Jess: I agree with what Bellatrix said in the beginning of the sixth book – that if he were more loyal, he would’ve went to Azkaban for Voldemort.

Laura: Yeah, that’s – that’s really good. That’s a – yeah, I like that. That’s really good evidence. And I’ve always thought that Lucius is in it for his own personal gain, just because of how he’s constantly over at the Ministry trying to get people to listen to what he says and how he’s constantly pushing his opinion off on others and threatening that he’s going to curse certain people’s families if they don’t vote to keep – or vote to kick Dumbledore out of the school. Not to mention the fact that he claimed he was under the Imperius Curse at the time that he was in Voldemort’s inner circle and then all of a sudden, Voldemort comes back and he’s like, “Oh no I made that up.” So I think he’s…

Ben: “I never denounced the old ways” or whatever.

Laura: Yes. I think that he’s definitely in it for his own gain. Absolutely.

Ben: That – that really does make sense.

Jason Isaacs as Lucius

Ben: How do you guys think Jason Isaacs fits the role of Lucius Malfoy? When I – when we were in New York City for the Goblet of Fire premiere – after I walked out of the movie, he was actually right down the stairs and so I had a chance to sort of mingle with him…

[Andrew gasps]

Ben: …and – well actually, Sue and John were hogging him.

Kevin: [laughs] Yeah, I saw that.

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: Sue ran up there and threw her – threw her arms around him…

[Andrew laughs]

Laura: Aww. [laughs]

Ben: …and gave her a – gave him a big kiss on the cheek. But I think he’s – I think Jason Isaacs is definitely a good guy and I think that he does the role of Lucius extremely well.

Laura: Mhm.

Andrew: Yeah. I really enjoyed his role in The Patriot. I thought that was a great film and I can’t remember what part he played exactly, but he was one of the – he was one of the bad guys.

Laura: I thought that he was the best part of that movie. [laughs] Really.

Andrew: Yeah, yeah. He – he was really good. That was a great film.

Laura: I really think that there are certain actors within the Harry Potter movies – particularly the adult actors – who really just have these characters down, and they’re exactly as I imagined them and Jason Isaacs is absolutely one of those actors. Whenever I saw him in the trailer for Chamber of Secrets, I about died of excitement. I was like, “This is Lucius. This definitely who he is,” and I was so pumped to go see that movie because of that. And he absolutely lived up to my expectations.

Jess: Same here.

Ben: Okay. I think that wraps up our character discussion for this week. This – this segment will be back in two weeks. I don’t know what we’re doing next week. Andrew will have to fill you…

Andrew: I know. We’re gonna have a party.

Ben: We’re having a party. We’re 41.

[Ben and Laura laugh]

Ben: Thanks to The Two-Way Mirror for some of these points concerning Luc – Lucius.

Spy on Spartz

Ben: Now changing pace a bit, it’s time for everybody’s favorite segment – Spy on Spartz. If you recall last week’s show, each week Emerson decides not to answer his phone, we’re going to reveal a digit of his phone number. Last week’s digit was two.

Andrew: Ooh.

Ben: Let’s see if Mr. Spartz is around this week.

[Phone rings]

Andrew: Oh, gosh, this is so exciting. [giggles]

Laura: I know. I can’t contain my concitement. Excitement. I can’t even talk. I’m so jittery.

Andrew: Can’t even say it.

Laura: I think I’m gonna pee my pants. Oh my god.

Ben: Come on, Emerson.

[Emerson’s voicemail picks up]

Ben: Uh-oh!

Andrew: Ohh. [laughs]

Ben: Big mistake.

Andrew: That’s his voicemail, for all of you who don’t know. All right.

Ben: Big mistake. One.

Andrew: Time for the second number.

Ben: Second digit…

[Andrew laughs]

[Ben’s phone rings]

Ben: Uh-oh! Uh-oh! We have a call from Mr. Spartz. [Picks up phone] Hello? Hello? Hello?

Emerson: You there?

Ben: Speak up, dude. Can barely hear you.

Emerson: I’m inside a big building.

Ben: Oh really. What are you doing?

Emerson: I’m at the Hyatt in Indianapolis.

Ben: For what?

Emerson: To see Erinn.

Ben: A what?

Emerson: To see Erinn.

Ben: Oh. Aww. By the way, you’re on MuggleCast right now. We’re spying on Spartz.

[Kevin laughs]

Emerson: Yeah. Right.

Ben: No, I’m dead serious.

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: There’s this – there’s this new segment we’re doing where each week you don’t answer your phone, we reveal a digit of your phone number. And so…

Emerson: Really?

Ben: Yeah. Last week – last week we gave out the two.

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: And so – and we already gave out the one, so – and then you called back.

[Laura laughs]

Ben: So maybe we’ll edit that out but – so what are you doing right now?

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: So you’re visiting old Erinn?

Emerson: That’s actually a pretty good idea. [laughs]

Kevin: It’s great, yeah.

Ben: Isn’t that – isn’t that an awesome segment?

[Andrew laughs]

Emerson: I always – I always answer my phone, though, so you’re out of luck.

Ben: Aw. Well last week you didn’t and – just the way…

Emerson: Got to go.

Ben: Okay, dude. I’ll talk to you later.

Emerson: All right.

[Ben hangs up phone]

Kevin: He liked our idea.

Ben: That’s Emerson, alright. This is his debut on – that’s his MuggleCast debut.

Laura: Whoo.

Andrew: Yay!

Ben: I just – my life, guys – my life is now complete that Emerson has given his approval for our segment. Aw.

[Andrew and Kevin laugh]

Andrew: Spy on Spartz is done. [laughs] We always though he didn’t like it. That’s why we did it.

Ben: Yup. So that was another wonderful Spy on Spartz.

Chapter by Chapter: Chapter 14

Ben: Well, we just threw a lot of analysis at you with old Lucius. Lucius, Loosus, Lossus, Luuucius Malfoy.

Kevin: [laughs] Did we.

Ben: Well, y’all ready for some more?

Andrew: Loquacious?

Ben: Loquacious. Luc…

Andrew: Uh, no. But okay.

Ben: You’re not? Okay. Moving on to our chapter-by-chapter analysis. This week is Chapter 14 of Sorcerer’s Stone.

Andrew: So, the chapter opens up with Hermione nagging Harry and Ron to get studying for their exams and then one day in the library, they spot Hagrid looking around for what we would assume to be books and he tells them to keep…

Ben: Hagrid doesn’t know how to read.

Andrew: Well, that’s what I was going to say. That was one of my points.

Laura: I don’t think it was ever said Hagrid couldn’t read.

Andrew: Well, let’s get to that. Was it – is my mind being plagued by the movie again or did he also say in the book that, “I can’t spell it.”

Laura: Well, just ’cause you can’t spell Voldemort doesn’t mean you can’t read. I mean, he…

Andrew: Well, you should. That’s a pretty big name.

Laura: Well no, but…

Kevin: Yeah, but you have to remember, not many – not many people write down Voldemort. They write down…

Laura: He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.

Kevin: You know.

Ben: You-Know-Who.

[Laura laughs]

Kevin: You-know-who or stuff like that so not many people have seen the spelling of his name.

[Laura laughs]

Ben: [Imitating Hagrid] I don’t know how to spell it.

Andrew: Mm. [laughs]

Laura: Well, he had a cake for Harry and it said “Happy Birthday, Harry” on it. So I mean, he must be able to read. Just ’cause he’s not a good speller…

Andrew: Oh, that’s true.

Jess: And he made it to what? His second year of school?

Laura: Yeah. Third year, third year, actually.

Jess: He would’ve failed if he didn’t know how to read.

Ben: Yeah, that’s – that’s true. Jess brings up a good point.

Andrew: Yeah.

[Laura laughs]

Ben: [Imitating Hagrid] Hagrid.

Andrew: Brownie points for Jess.

Laura: I love her.

Ben: [Still imitating Hagrid] Keeper of keys and games at Hogwarts.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: So he tells them to keep quiet about the Sorcerer’s Stone and then they see an egg behind his back and then Ron goes over to investigate where he was, and they realize he was in the dragon section looking for dragon books. Well, the trio goes to and – anyone feel free to stop me.

Kevin: Well, something caught my eye and I – it was around – at least, page 231 in my book. This is a … what do you call it? It’s not the hardcover.

Andrew: Paperback?

Ben: E-book?[laughs]

Kevin: Oh yeah.

Jess: Paperback?

Kevin: Yes, paperback. Sorry.

Andrew: [laughs] You don’t know what to call it.

Kevin: Yeah. [laughs] Well, I don’t read books that often. No, I’m kidding.

[Laura laughs]

Kevin: It was a joke, it was a joke.

Why Does Dumbledore Trust Hagrid?

Kevin: Okay – well, what caught my eye was Hagrid was sort of like, bragging about how much Dumbledore trusts him, and I realized that we did a lot of discussion about who or what could have Dumbledore done to leave a message for Harry. Is it possible that he left it with Hagrid? The reason I say it is because he – Hagrid – he did trust Hagrid with the keys. He did trust Hagrid with Fluffy.

Laura: But, at the same time, especially at that moment, when we see that Hermione can just sort of butter Hagrid up and get him to tell her things, kind of how easily manipulated he can be into giving information.

Kevin: Well, I was thinking about that, but my thoughts on that was who would think that Hagrid would hold that information?

Laura: That’s true… Um, I think…

Kevin: Sort of like obscurity, like it’s secure because no one would ever think that Dumbledore would give that information to Hagrid. The first person they would think is, you know, McGonagall.

Laura: That’s true…

Kevin: …or something like that.

Laura: I could see that happening. My only grievance with it is I think it’s sort of along the lines of like, you know, who would expect to have a Horcrux in Dumbledore’s office? It’s like, no one really would, but it just – it almost seems too easy. I don’t want Book 7 to be easy. [laughs] I don’t know.

[Kevin laughs]

Laura: …maybe I’m just mean like that, but I don’t want Harry to just be able to walk around and have people say, “Oh, by the way. Here you go.”

Andrew: Well, by easy, do you mean detailed and in-depth, because, I mean, if Jo is planning on making this book shorter than – what did she say? Half-Blood Prince or Order of the Phoenix?

Laura: Yeah. It’s still a pretty reasonable length…

Ben: Order of the Phoenix.

Kevin: Order of the Phoenix?

Laura: …but it can still be detailed.

Ben: Do you mean convenient?

Andrew: Yeah.

Laura: I don’t want it to…

Andrew: Or do you mean easy as in…

Laura: I don’t want it to be too convenient.

Andrew: Yeah, but, I mean, a lot of things can be easy, but…

Laura: It just seems like, if, you know – it just seems like if too many people who are close to Harry know what’s going on – I don’t know. It just sort of seems like that’s going beyond what Dumbledore wanted.

Andrew: Well, yeah. Definitely.

Laura: Of course, you can trust Hagrid, and, of course, you can trust McGonagall, but like when you have a really good group of friends, the more people you tell a secret, the more chance you have of it getting out. Not out of any act of malice, but it does happen. So, I just think that a lot of stuff is going to be kept between the trio. And of course, there will be some outsider information, but…

Kevin: Well, that brings me to my next question. Why did Dumbledore trust Hagrid with this information when he’s so gullible?

Ben: Because he said he trusted Hagrid with his life. He trusted Hagrid with the Sorcerer’s Stone. So, why couldn’t he trust him with this?

Kevin: But that’s exactly what I’m saying. Why would he, if he’s so gullible? If Dumbledore knew Hagrid was so gullible, why would he trust him with this information?

Laura: Well…

Ben: Well, he continues to trust Hagrid throughout the entire series. He trusted Hagrid delivering Harry to the Dursleys that night. Hagrid is sort of – he may be a bit gullible…

Laura: You know what?

Ben: …but it’s all – the relationship is based on trust.

Kevin: But do you see my point? I mean, like throughout this chapter, they’re constantly boosting his ego to get stuff out of him, and the whole point of the chapter is because – he was gullible enough to get this dragon for information. So, the questions arise. Why is he so trusted when it’s obvious he is a like a leaking…

Ben: Can’t be trusted? [laughs]

Kevin: Yeah, exactly.

Laura: Well, I guess the one thing you can say for the fact that Hagrid leaked information to Quirrell was he was drunk, and I’m kind of hoping and assuming that that was a lesson that he learned, and it never happened again. I think that one of the key points in Chapter 1 of Sorcerer’s Stone is where McGonagall says, “Are you sure you can trust Hagrid with something as important as this?” And I think the key word there being important, that when something – for instance, if it were important that Hagrid not tell, say, someone like Draco about stuff relating to the Sorcerer’s Stone, he never would. But people like the trio, who obviously aren’t going to run off and get him in trouble, I think he feels like he can be a little bit more open with them. And I think Dumbledore knows that. I think he just realizes that Hagrid is on his side and, you know, even if you’ve got someone who has some pretty obvious character flaws, you’re not going to get anywhere if you don’t have people on your side.

Jess Hates Dumbledore

Jess: That’s – yeah, that’s true. However, this feeds my theory that Dumbledore is an idiot…

[Laura laughs]

Jess: …and that Dumbledore is evil…

[Laura laughs again]

Jess: …and that Dumbledore deserved to fall off the Astronomy Tower… [laughs]

Andrew: Umm…

Jess: …dead, because…

[Laura and Jess laugh]

Ben: [Imitating Hagrid] NEVER – INSULT – ALBUS – DUMBLEDORE – IN – FRONT – OF – ME!

[Everyone laughs]

Jess: Well, you know… [laughs]

[Andrew, Ben, and Jess laugh]

Ben: We have caves.

Jess: Well [laughs] Well, Iíve never liked Dumbledore. I just don’t like Dumbledore. I think he’s a fraud…

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: Oh, my gosh!

Jess: …I think he deserved everything he got…

[Laura laughs again]

Andrew: Who are you?!

Jess: And, you know, I think almost in a way that he sets up Harry into these situations so he can’t take the blame for it.

Andrew: Oh, whoa…

Ben: Whatever! You’re like…

[Laura laughs]

Jess: Whatever happens.

Andrew: I’m on the verge of crying! I can’t believe you would say this!

Ben: You’re like – you’re like the National Enquirer on MuggleCast.

[Andrew, Laura, and Jess laugh]

Andrew: It’s true.

Laura: This girl laughed at me when I cried. It was so sad. [laughs]

Jess: I laughed and took pictures while Laura cried over Dumbledore’s death.

Andrew: Speaking of crying…

Ben: Oh, jeez!

Andrew: …did anyone watch The OC last night?

Ben: Oh, my god!

Andrew: Marissa died!

Kevin: Oh, god.

Andrew: My sister was paralyzed for ten minutes.

[Laura laughs]

Ben: Did you watch it with her?

Andrew: I was like, “Get a grip!”

Ben: [Imitating Andrew’s sister] She was like, “Oh, my god!”

Andrew: No! I look into her room, and she was, like, on her bed, face down. I was like, “What’s the problem? What happened on the show?” And she’s like, [imitating sister] “Marissa died!” I’m like, “Who – who cares?! Whatever!”

Ben: [Imitating Andrew’s sister] Like, oh, my god, Andrew!

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: [Crying] Marissa died! Marissa died!

Andrew: Ben, I thought you used to watch that show?

Ben: I do. I just didn’t watch The OC last week. I’ve been busy.

Andrew: But it’s the season finale!

Ben: I know!

Laura: Yeah! I figured that was why we didn’t do the show yesterday.

[Andrew gasps]

Laura: I figured we were going to be too busy watching The OC.

[Andrew laughs]

Kevin: Yeah.

Ben: Actually, I won…

Andrew: Ssssh!

Ben: No.

Andrew: [Mimics Ben] Ben had academic awards.

How do the Owls Work?

Andrew: Well, so, the trio goes to Hagrid’s hut to get more answers out of him concerning Nicholas Flamel and the Sorcerer’s stone, and later on, Hagrid sends a note via Hedwig that the egg is hatching that he has. So, after it hatches, Malfoy is caught spying in on the event and runs back to the castle once they catch a glimpse of him. Now, the first thing we wanted to bring up was how do the owls work? Because how is Hagrid able to send Hedwig – that’s kind of a tongue twister – to Harry? Like, could he have just spotted him in the sky or what? You know?

Ben: Perhaps he went to the Owlery…

Laura: Yeah, I figured he would have come from the Owlery.

Kevin: Yeah.

Andrew: But would Hagrid have time to run up to the Owlery and grab Hedwig…

Ben: Hedwig may be eating there.

Andrew: …and then mail a letter to him in the school?

Ben: Hedwig may be eating there. Gettin’ the mouse…

Andrew: But where was Harry, again, when this happened?

Laura: He was in the Great Hall…

Andrew: Page 234.

Laura: …when he got the letter? I think.

Andrew: Yeah. So, why couldnít Hagrid have gone into the Great Hall and gotten him rather than going up to the Owlery?

Laura: Because he didn’t want to take a chance of anyone overhearing?

Ben: [Whispers] The egg is hatching!

Andrew: I guess, but no one would know what they were talking about. I don’t know. It just seems kind of strange. If it’s hatching, do you have time to run upstairs…

Laura: But this is also the same guy…

Andrew: You know, send the letter…

Laura: Hagrid has made it very clear that he is interested in having a dragon, and then he goes into the school library and checks out books about dragons.

Ben: That’s right.

Laura: So, clearly, he doesn’t always think things through…

Ben: Heís not a very rational thinker.

Laura: …though I do love him dearly.

Why Didn’t Draco Tell on Hagrid?

Andrew: So, Laura, you also wanted to also bring up a point here concerning…

Laura: Well, whenever the trio are in the cabin with Hagrid, and the egg is hatching and everything…

Andrew: Yes.

Laura: …all of a sudden, Hagrid looks out the window, and Draco is there. And my first reaction when I first read the book was, “Oh, god! Hagrid’s dead!” But then, Draco found out about the dragon, and he didn’t spill. And what I didn’t get about that was why he wouldn’t want to get Hagrid into trouble immediately, and the more I thought about it, it seemed like it was possible that he might have told Lucius, who told him to keep his quiet, because he was planning something within the Ministry to get Hagrid in trouble, which would tie in directly into the discussion about his very obvious influences on Fudge and other people within the Ministry, so I wanted to see what you guys thought.

Jess: I think that’s a good theory. I don’t think Big Daddy Malfoy likes animals, and I think he considers giants animals, and, you know, the fact that Hagrid is a half-giant – anything to get him sacked would be perfect.

Kevin: Well, either that or manipulation. It is a way to blackmail someone, though.

Laura: Yeah. I mean, I guess it depends on if he had anything he needed to blackmail them for. It didn’t seem like he did, because all he, you know, all he did was kind of hang it over Ron’s head in the hospital wing.

Jess: Yeah.

Laura: That was pretty much it.

Andrew: Yeah.

Jess: He does seem kind of like an instant gratification person, so I do have to question his motives.

Laura: Yeah. Definitely.

Kevin: That’s true. Yeah. I don’t know.

Jess: And while we’re discussing this theme, I’d like to point out that in the movie, they have Norbert breathing fire right away. This is incorrect. According to Fantastic Beasts, Norwegian Ridgebacks cannot breathe fire until about one to three months, though they are the earliest fire-breathers.

Andrew: Oh, but Jess, Jess, Jess, Jess, Jess, Jess, Jess.

Ben: Hollywood!

Andrew: It was for comedic value!

Ben: Hollywood!

Andrew: It was to get everyone to laugh. We all had a good chuckle over it.

Jess: I don’t like laughing.

Laura: Have you ever…

Jess: I’m mean.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Okay!

Laura: Have you noticed, though, it seems like in every [laughs] in every movie, they have to – they have their certain areas in each movie where they have kind of this pattern of doing things that just – I don’t think are that funny, like…

Ben: Wrong?!

Laura: Well, no! Well, in Goblet of Fire, that whole thing with the beard and Madame Maxime like eating something out of it. That was kind of icky.

Ben: That was hot!

[Andrew and Ben laugh]

Jess: The dragon scene…

Laura: It seems like they always kind of try to make – they always kind of try to make Hagrid look stupid, it almost seems like. I don’t know. They try to turn him into more comic relief than I really see him being in the books. More as if…

Ben: I’ve always thought of Hagrid as a lovable, funny guy.

Laura: I think so, too.

Kevin: Yeah, but they’re just trying to set up a comedic character.

Laura: Yeah.

Andrew: You always have to have some goober in a film…

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: …that is always some comic relief. Now, Harry gets the idea to ask Charlie if he would like to take Norbert to Romania to be bred because the trio is pushing Hagrid to get rid of him. They eventually get Charlie to take him back to Romania, and his friends come and pick the dragon up, and everything’s fine and dandy. Everything went smooth. And then Harry and Hermione are walking back and Filch catches them coming back to their dormitories in the middle of the night because they forgot the Invisibility cloak [in high-pitched voice] back up on the tower! Oh no. That’s where the chapter leaves off. Jess, didn’t you want to bring up something?

Jess: I think that Dumbledore knew about Norbert, [laughs] and this is another point on my theory that Dumbledore is an idiot, because knowing about Norbert, I don’t know how he would have managed it, but he should have found a way to keep Norbert. He would have been useful. Dumbledore discovered the twelve uses for Dragon’s blood so, he could have [laughs] done some interesting experiments with Norbert.

Kevin: [laughs] You really don’t like Dumbledore, do you?

Jess: No, I don’t! And also, this is [laughs] He couldn’t possibly have foreseen this, but it would have been – Norbert would have been useful in Book 6 when they came to the cave to go for the locket Horcrux, because he could have breathed his magical fire breath [laughs] and warded off the Inferi so…

Kevin: Can I ask you a question?

Jess: Yes.

Kevin: Dumbledore has a lot of contacts, right?

Jess: Yes.

Kevin: Why doesn’t he just get a dragon himself?

Jess: Because then he could blame Hagrid for the dragon. It wouldn’t be his fault.

Kevin: Yeah, exactly, yeah, yeah okay. Conspiracy theorist.

[Jess and Laura laugh]

Jess: Exactly.

Andrew: Oh, geez.

Kevin: It’s all Dumbledore’s fault now.

Ben: Yeah.

Jess: It’s always Dumbledore’s fault.

Ben: Well that wraps up this week’s chapter-by-chapter analysis. Next week we’ll be talking about Chapter 15 of Sorcerer’s Stone. I don’t have the book open so I can’t tell you the title.

Kevin: Let me open it…

Andrew: How could you not know, Ben? You’re not a real fan!

Laura: It’s a secret. It’s a secret. They’ll find out what it’s called next week.

Andrew: It’s “The Forbidden Forest.” Oh, sorry. I had this around it.

Laura: You did.

Andrew: [laughs] It’s “The Forbidden Forest.” We’ve only got what, three more chapters? Three more chapters and then we’re done with chapter by chapters of Sorcerer’s Stone.

[Everyone cheers]

Laura: We’re just burning through these books.

[Andrew and Kevin laugh]

Andrew: Yeah.

Give Me a Butterbeer: Christianity

Ben: Now it is time for a segment that we debuted last week called Give me a Butterbeer! This is where I go on a rant about something that’s going on in the Harry Potter community, and say, “Give me a Butterbeer!” but before we dive into this week’s discussion, I’d first like to thank everyone who gave me feedback on this segment. I really hope that everyone who is listening enjoys this.

Andrew: I don’t.

Ben: I was trying to swallow but I couldn’t. Many of you requested that this week I bring up the ongoing feud between Harry Potter and Christianity, so let’s do that. Harry haters unite: Harry Potter vs. Christianity. Book burning dates back several centuries. In modern times, banning has become the new burning. Copies of the Harry Potter books have literally been ripped off the shelves of many schools and libraries across America, claiming that the books are encouraging the occult and evil in our youth. Just last week in Glenith County, Georgia, not too far from MuggleCaster Laura, there was an attempt to remove Harry from the library. Luckily enough, the school board ruled in favor of the books.

Many of the Harry-haters out there dislike the boy wizard because of his sheer popularity. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone hit the shores of America in 1998 after taking the United Kingdom by storm. It wasn’t too long until Sorcerer’s Stone took up residence on the New York Times best-seller list.

When something grows to be as popular as Harry Potter, some people, particularly those who are religious, begin to question why the growth happened so rapidly. Richard Abanes’s book, Harry Potter and the Bible, explained the HP phenomenon as a product of the occult. Abanes goes on to question the ethics of Harry, claiming that the books show morally confusing messages presented throughout the series. The main reason that Christians claim that Harry came from the occult is because of the way JK Rowling thought him up. We all know that in 1990, on a train ride, Jo said that the idea just came to her, and then Harry Potter was born. Skeptics believe that Harry Potter is not a mere creation of JK’s imagination, but rather the occult making its way into Jo’s mind.

The author of Harry Potter and the Bible questions Jo’s beliefs concerning magic. In an online interview, Jo said that when it comes to the kind of magic that appears in her series, she does not believe in magic in that way. This caused opponents to jump all over her, crying witchcraft. Have no fear: Jo was not referring to the occult. The type of magic that Jo was referring to is the type that exists in the minds and the hearts of the children who read her series. The magic of seeing millions of fans lining up at midnight awaiting the release of her new book. This is in no way the evil magic spawning from the occult.

The ethics of Harry Potter are continuously questioned throughout Harry Potter and the Bible. The author makes the claim that the use of swear words like “hell” and “damn” that we see in Goblet of Fire are inappropriate for the audience that Jo is supposed to be writing for. However, the readers of the Harry Potter books have grown up along with Harry. It’s preposterous for us to suggest that by the time a child is ten or eleven years old that they haven’t already heard the words “hell” and “damn.” The words add to the story in a way that is oftentimes over-looked. Sometimes to express the severity of a situation it is necessary to use words like that.

It is hard to question the real life lessons of the Harry Potter books. It’s a classic story between good and evil which demonstrates friendship, caring, and the power of love. Calling Jo’s work unethical couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s an insult to those of us who read the books, and to Jo, who’s put years into formulating the series to convey those messages.

The controversy over Harry Potter is indeed going to continue. I’m not condemning parents who don’t want their kids to read the books. That’s a personal decision that you have to make as guardians, but attempting to censor books from youth who want to read them is a travesty, and denying kids a prime educational opportunity, and most importantly the love for reading.

Jamie Fletcher said it best: “Even to the present day, we often condemn books that were written to fight the very things we claim to be fighting. Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn is so often cited as being racist, when it was written against slavery and racism.” Jo’s books are about the fight against evil, not an attempt to spread it throughout the world.

So, Give Me a Butterbeer!

Laura: That was awesome. I completely agree 100 percent and that was just really cool. Thank you for that.

Andrew: But, you know, Ben, in response to when you’re talking about cursing in the Harry Potter books, I just wanted to touch on how with MuggleCast, we’ve sort of made an unspoken rule that we don’t curse on the show because it’s in respect to the parents who let their kids listen to the show, because the internet is such – you know, a dangerous place, and parents are unsure, and by not cursing on the show, and not using hell and damn, it attracts more people. But, we don’t need to curse on the show, so that’s why we don’t do it. Like you were saying with the books…

Laura: And it does happen occasionally.

Andrew: It does. Sometimes we’ll edit it out; sometimes we’ll just let it go. Once in a while. But I just wanted to say that you’re right, with MuggleCast it’s not necessary. We don’t need them to bring a point across, but in the books when you’re working with these characters who are adults, then yes. It is necessary.

Kevin: Well, I did want to make a point. Have you noticed – Do any of you have a friend who does not swear at all?

Jess: Yes.

Laura: Yes.

Kevin: Have you ever heard that person swear?

Laura: Sure. I mean, every now and then.

Kevin: Because when they swear, when they swear, it makes an impact.

Laura: Mhm.

Kevin: I think the same analogy is true with the books. It’s not often that JK Rowling uses such words, but when she does, it adds a lot of impact.

Ben: Right, and I’d like to thank – Hold on one second I have to look at the name on the box – the person who sent me this book. I used to have a copy of it, but then I got put off when I read it. Thanks…

[Everyone laughs]

Ben: Thanks to Katie from I think California. She sent us a bunch of books a while back, and when I was writing this week’s Give Me a Butterbeer, I looked – I need some of the material from people who cause the controversy over Harry Potter, and she sent me a copy of Harry Potter and the Bible, and it’s actually – there’s some interesting stuff in this book, and she left me a personal note in here saying, “If this doesn’t make your blood boil, I don’t know what will. But it’s quite interesting all the same.” And it’s completely true, this author went as far to rip off the – some of the formatting in the book, and it just really can begin to irritate you, because some of the things that – some of the points he tries to make just really get under your skin, and here’s what it says: “Harmless fantasy or dangerous fascination? Harry Potter and the Bible. The menace behind the magic.” And then, at the bottom it says, “Not approved by JK Rowling.”

[Andrew laughs]

Ben: Well, I’m sorry, Mr. Abanes.

Laura: Well no!

Ben: Your book is not receiving endorsement from MuggleCast, that’s for sure. [Laughs]

Andrew: [Laughs] Too late!

Laura: And you know something else that I’ll point out about swearing in the books, how parents – particularly religious parents – do not like the use of damn and hell occasionally in the books, those words are used in the Bible.

Ben: Exactly.

Laura: And, I mean, children read the Bible and it’s just – I personally do not see why sheltering children from what the world is like, and what they will hear in the world is doing them any favors, but at the same time, like you, Ben, I’m not going to question a parent’s right to say what their child should and should not be allowed to read.

Ben: Right, there’s also a nice little parallel between Harry Potter and Huckleberry Finn. Like I said, that Huckleberry Finn is oftentimes cited as being racist, when Twain actually wrote that book to be against slavery and racism. Just because of the sheer fact that throughout the book there are some racial slurs that are used,a nd just because Harry Potter uses – JK Rowling uses hell and damn in her books, it’s not because she’s using it for the sake of cussing. That would be like saying that anytime that anybody swears, it’s because the occult influences them to, which really doesn’t make sense. There’s no denying that those words are a part of adult conversation, and when it happens in the book, I recall, is when Krum was attempting to torture Cedric Diggory in the maze, and he said, “What the hell are you doing?” and what do you expect him to say? “What the heck are you doing?” That doesn’t make sense in the book. It’s not real world, and that’s what Jo is trying to convey.

Laura: And with books like Huckleberry Finn and, for instance, To Kill a Mockingbird, if you don’t use the type of language that was commonly used at the time…

Ben: It takes away from…

Laura: …it’s not historically accurate.

Ben: Right, and it takes away from the message.

Laura: It’s not accurate, and it takes away from the story!

Ben: Mhm.

Laura: It does. Absolutely.

Ben: Well, I hope…

Kevin: Also…

Ben: Go ahead, sorry.

Kevin: Also, another point. I know you brought up the point of there being witchcraft in Harry Potter and stuff like that. I believe a couple – it’s probably a couple of years ago, now. I’m Catholic myself, and the Roman Catholic church actually okayed Harry Potter. And the reason why is – I think it was a very good point. Just like any book, you can’t take the book literally.

Laura: Mhm!

Ben: Right.

Kevin: You need to – you need to view its moral aspects, and Harry Potter itself…

Ben: Right.

Kevin: …you know…

Andrew: Right.

Kevin: …represents a lot of good morals. So…

Ben: Nobody’s forming a belief system off of Harry Potter. [Laughs]

Kevin: And I think the same controversy’s going on now with stuff like The Da Vinci Code and stuff like that, because people are taking it literally.

Laura: Yeah. That’s…

Kevin: So, you know…

Laura: It’s fiction, guys. Fiction.

Andrew: Yeah, it’s unnecessary.

[Laura laughs]

Kevin: Exactly. There’s a reason – you know, it’s a good story in the end, and just because it touches on things that could be potentially religious in nature doesn’t mean that she ever meant it to be.

Andrew: Well, let me just say one last thing. The Da Vinci Code controversy – it’s been getting a lot of press, and someone brought up – it might have been Tom Hanks, he was being interviewed, you know, “Oh, why is there so much controversy?” And he said what people have to realize is it’s just a movie. It’s not trying to…

Kevin: Bring down the church, exactly. Exactly.

Andrew: …bring a statement across. It’s not saying – yeah. It’s not trying to say, “This is what it means. This is – we’re doing this movie because…

Laura: Yeah, it’s just…

Andrew: …you know, blah, blah, blah.” It’s the same thing with Harry Potter. Harry Potter is not trying to say – trying to imply witchcraft is evil and Harry – you know, it’s just not. [laughs] It doesn’t make sense.

Laura: Yeah!

Kevin: Yes, exactly.

Andrew: And…

Ben: Right.

Laura: It’s an entertaining story, that’s all it is.

Ben: It’s not trying to turn all the readers into little witches and wizards.

Kevin: Exactly. I think the church said that we don’t want people confused, and so long as they’re educated to that point, that it’s fiction, then there’s no problem.

Laura: Mhm.

Kevin: It is under fantasy in bookstores, so… [laughs]

Ben: Definitely. So folks, that’s two butterbeers down the hatch! I think I’m going to say that from now on. If you want to leave any feedback for me, send an email to ben at staff dot mugglenet dot com, or by clicking Contact Us on and selecting my name from the feedback form. I’d appreciate any feedback on this segment that you are willing to give. This is probably going to be one of the more controversial topics that we’re going to discuss in this segment. Remember, send in some of your ideas; I may discuss them. For example, this one was – I got about fifteen to twenty emails about – for feedback about the segment, and a lot – over half of them suggested that I talk about Harry Potter and Christianity this week. So I do indeed use your suggestions, so please continue to send them.

Voicemail – Voldemort Internationally

Ben: So let’s move on to this week’s voicemails. We have a few of them for you. Let’s go to the first voicemail concerning Voldemort’s effects internationally.

[Audio]: Hi, I’m Kyle from Connecticut, and I just want to say Pokeflute would put a Snorlax to sleep, and probably also Fluffy. Voldemort is all powerful in Europe, and we know that there must – we know that he’s ravished all of Europe. Does – do you think he’d also be in North America and other continents as well? And would there also be other governments from other nations as well? You see in the Quidditch World Cup the wizards, which is from America. Will that mean anything? Thank you. Love the show. Bye.

Ben: I couldn’t agree more that there are indeed – I mean, that Voldemort has indeed spread to other continents, especially North America. And a parallel that I like to draw here is there was a gang that got its roots in Southern California, you may have heard of them, called the MS-13. And now they’ve spread to an international scale, and in order for Voldemort to take the next big step, it’s necessary for him to be able to spread his empire throughout the world, and not just on – throughout Great Britain.

Andrew: Is there much fear for him right now? Like I’m sure he’s known, but do you think people in North America or in the other cont – [coughs] other continents are, like, shaking in their boots? I really don’t think it’s as big as…

Laura: I think that it’s…

Andrew: …a problem as it is…

Ben: I can see it happening.

Laura: I think it’s exactly the same as any other kind of terrorist leader in the real world. I mean, people here, like we’ve stated before, are afraid of Osama bin Laden and what his followers can do. So I think that it’s perfectly rational to assume that Voldemort would be well known to wizarding communities all over the world. It just so happens that…

Andrew: Is there the same fear? Because with, like, Osama bin Laden for example, people in…

Ben: He attacked the US.

Andrew: Right! And he’s threatened the US multiple times, like Voldemort has threatened Europe. But he hasn’t threatened, say, Brazil. [laughs] I mean, you know, so…

Laura: See, that’s the thing. Voldemort doesn’t – he doesn’t target certain countries; he’s targeting everyone. That’s the point.

Ben: Yeah.

Laura: He does not like Muggles, he does not like Muggle-borns. He is strictly obsessed with having his pureblood society. So I really think that he’s a threat everywhere. It just so happens that the books are based in England, and we just tend to see more of the European perspective on it.

Ben: That’s definitely true. You know my wonderful terrorism analogy, I just love it.

[Ben and Laura laugh]

Ben: There’s also a parallel – you know how Osama bin Laden is believed that he had – well, it has been found out that he has terrorist Al Qaeda cells within the United States. There was one that was broken up in Buffalo a few years ago, Buffalo, New York. So it makes sense for Voldemort to extend his empire in the same way and probably have some people out in America. Because what if America tries to intervene in the magical war that’s going on in Great Britain? I know that’s not likely to happen in the book; it’s going to be kept…

Laura: Mhm.

Ben: …all in the British family there. But I’m just saying that if you think about it logically, it makes sense for him to have these people out there.

Laura: Definitely. And…

Jess: I do think – oh. Go ahead, Laura.

Laura: No, go ahead, Jess. I’ve talked too much. Go on. [laughs]

Jess: I just wanted to say that I do think he’s expanded, but from the glimpse that I saw of the other wizarding communities, they seem sort of passive where they don’t really keep up with what’s going on in other wizarding communities, other than things like sports – you know, to use that kind of – maybe like soccer…

Laura: Yeah!

Jess: …football, whatever. Those kind of analogies.

Laura: Yeah, that’s really valid, because that’s kind of how it is with us too. I mean, a lot of people don’t know that certain other countries exist. What was it, they said some percentage of school children could not find Iraq on a map. So, I mean, I think that there’s definitely some influence there in the fact that people sort of tend to pick and choose what they pay attention to. But I think Voldemort’s kind of a threat to everybody who’s involved in the wizarding community, I guess. It just seems like he’s such a big name in Europe that he would at least be a threat everywhere else.

Ben: That’s definitely true.

Andrew: I’m sure they fear him, but not as much fear as there is in England, especially among Hogwarts and Harry’s closest friends and family.

Laura: Mmm.

Andrew: Well, not family, but…

Laura: Yeah.

Ben: Well, that was a good question. Thanks for sending that in. Roll the next voicemail.

Voicemail – Nicolas Flamel

[Audio]: Hi MuggleCast. It’s Lauren from New Jersey. I recently finished reading The Da Vinci Code, and while reading, there was a list of the Grand Masters of the Priory of Sion, and number eight was Nicolas Flamel. I did some research, and Flamel’s believed to have made the Philosopher’s stone and his tomb is empty. Some think it was raided; others think he achieved immortality with the stone. Why do you think JK Rowling would take a Muggle who already existed and use him as a character in Sorcerer’s Stone? Thanks.

Ben: Coincidentally enough, this book that I was reading about Harry Potter and the Bible, it mentioned that JK Rowling has an immense knowledge about history and archeology – not archeology, but just alchemy and things like that. And I think it’s important to consider that the fact that he was an actual person makes it – makes him a perfect fit for the book. And I don’t see anything beyond that. I don’t know if he’s actually a Muggle because couldn’t he be a wizard?

Laura: Well, I would think that it…

Ben: Right, guys?

Laura: …within the book, he’s a wizard.

Jess: Yes.

Laura: Yeah.

Ben: But within the books. Right. I’m just saying that in real life, the real Nicolas Flamel was of course…

Laura: I just thought it was convenient for the story line.

Ben: Yeah, and it just fit perfectly.

Andrew: Yeah. Okay.

Ben: Well, thank you for submitting your question! Let’s play the next voicemail. This one’s about reading the books in different languages.

Voicemail – Reading Translations of Harry Potter

[Audio]: Hi guys, this is [unintelligible] and I was wondering if any of you guys have read the books in a different language. Well, I know I’ve read the books in English and Spanish, and I think I’ve noticed little differences – and I was wondering, if you have read the books in Spanish, do you think that they lost – what can you call it, they lost it in the process of translations? Love the show, bye!

Ben: Como se llama? [laughs]

Andrew: Me llamo Andrew. Let’s go around the table first. I have a copy of Sorcerer’s Stone in Spanish. I got it as a – I think it was a Christmas gift, just as a little like, hey, check this out, you have it in Spanish. Cool. I never actually read it. It’s over my head. How about you guys?

Ben: No tengo leer en Espanol.

Andrew: Ooo!

Ben: I have not read the book in Spanish. [laughs]

Andrew: Laura and Jess?

Ben: Laura, what about you?

Laura: I do have, I believe, the first and third paperbacks in Spanish, and I just thought it was really interesting that she brought that up, and I have a couple things I want to say about it after everyone else goes. So…

Andrew: Jess?

Jess: I’ve only read them in English, but like Laura, I also have a couple thoughts on it. I don’t think the magic is lost, the story is still there. Some of the humor I think maybe has trouble translating or they use metaphors or phrases that are native to English, like the captain with the pixies now or something like that. I did read an article that said those types of things were the hardest to translate.

Laura: Well, I think that one of the main things that is lost, and not just in the English to Spanish translation, but in pretty much every translation, is the fact that every culture has phrases and jokes that are unique to that, and it is so hard to translate that and actually have it make sense. On top of the fact that sometimes you just get translators who do weird, random things, and there’s no explanation as to why. In the first Spanish edition, for some reason, Trevor is a turtle.

[Andrew laughs]

Laura: And, there’s absolutely no reason for doing that. I don’t know why they would make him a turtle. It didn’t seem like there was any benefit to be had to it.

[Ben laughs]

Laura: And, another thing that I noticed was when they translate the Marauders’ nicknames in the third one, Moony’s name is Lunatico. And, when I see that, the first thing that pops into my mind is lunatic.

Ben: Yeah. [Laughs]

Laura: And it’s like, what? And, I mean obviously you have the connection with luna, meaning moon, but I just – to me, when I read that, it just seems like they’re calling him crazy. I don’t know, I just thought it was weird, but I mean, you do still have the story…

Jess: Well, he does kind of go crazy…

Laura: That’s true.

Jess: …as a werewolf.

Laura: That’s true, he does.

Jess: It’s a frenzy induced by the moon, so…

Laura: Yeah.

Jess: …it does make sense.

Laura: That does make sense, actually. But, I think that you still have the original story, but I think that it’s possible that a little bit of personality can be lost along the way with the characters, just because they are British, and to have it make sense to people in other cultures, you can’t have them acting British or using British terms and stuff, because it wouldn’t make sense.

Andrew: I mean, these translations could also give additional details away. For example, RAB: I can’t remember what language it was, but they needed to change one of the initials, and when it was translated back to English, it was Regulus. So, it was sort of like a giveaway.

Ben: That’s very interesting. Thank you for submitting your question. Hope we answered it very muy bueno.

[Andrew laughs]

Voicemail – Can Dementors Destroy Horcruxes?

[Audio:] Hey guys, this is Andrew from Chicago. I love the show, and I was just re-reading Book 3, and wondering about the possibility of Dementors playing a role in the destruction of a Horcrux. If they can suck the soul out of a person, why not be able to suck a piece of a soul out of an object? This would also provide an interesting ending to Book 7 for the Harry is a Horcrux shippers. Just wondering what you guys thought. Thanks, love your show, bye.

Ben: Terrible name.

Andrew: Oh, I love that name.

[Laura laughs]

Ben: He has a terrible name.

Andrew: You know, ‘Andrew’ means manly, as your fun fact for the day.

[Everyone laughs]

Ben: I’d have to thank Andrew, from…

Andrew: Ben means goober.

[Laura laughs]

Ben: Oh. Andrew, thank you for submitting your…

Andrew: What does Ben mean?

Ben: It means ‘son of my right hand.’

Andrew: Does it – what?

Ben: Andrew – yup. I’m dead serious.

Andrew: That doesn’t make sense.

Ben: Well look up – it means like Jesus.

Andrew: You’re Jesus?

Ben: He was the son of God’s right hand.

Andrew: You’re the son of Jesus?

Ben: That’s what they called it.

Laura: Oh, God. If Ben’s Jesus…

Andrew: I thought Jesus never – never mind.

[Laura laughs]

Ben: I am your savior. Okay. I think that it might make sense – I think that it might make sense for Dementors to be able to suck a soul out of an object. I don’t know.

Laura: The only reason I disagree with it is the fact that Dementors are drawn to people because of their fear and their emotions, and I don’t think inanimate objects can have…

Jess: Yeah, Horcrux seems dormant to me until it’s used. So I don’t think the Dementors would be able to find it.

Ben: Yeah, I change my mind, it doesn’t make sense.

[Andrew chuckles]

Ben: So, what if Harry was a Horcrux? Didn’t Jo say Harry wasn’t a Horcrux?

Andrew: Yeah, she said that.

Laura: Yeah.

Ben: Okay, then, that’s not going to play a role.

Laura: Can people be Horcruxes? That’s just…

Jess: An inanimate object.

Laura: I mean – yeah.

Ben: To me, it almost seemed like it’d have to be something like a coin, something you could carry in your pocket. Well, that wraps up this week’s voicemail discussion. Remember, call 1-218-20-MAGIC to leave your voicemail, or Skype the username MuggleCast. And, finally, you can send it via an attachment to MuggleCast at staff dot mugglenet dot com. We appreciate the feedback and voice mail that you’ve sent to us.

Favorites: Educational Decrees

Ben: Let’s move on MuggleCast’s Favorites segment, where we bring you a topic each week and say what our favorite is. This week, it is our favorite Educational Decree. Thanks to Kelly for sending this in. Andrew, do you want to start?

Andrew: Yeah, I’ll start off. And I regrettably am not sure if this is the last one – how many decrees were there? Is it 24?

Laura: A lot.

Ben: 28.

Andrew: 28? Okay, then this wasn’t the last one. But, my favorite Educational Decree, given out by the one and only Umbridge, would have to be that one which ordered all student organizations, societies, teams, groups, and clubs disbanded. In other words, no clubs, no activities – I’m pretty sure no Quidditch, right? So, it was a breaking point. It was, you were taking away what was one of the biggest, greatest aspects of it. Quidditch. Quidditch. You actually took away Quidditch. It was just a school now. It was, you go to school, you learn, that’s it. There was nothing for the students to do, and this just blew their minds, and this was one of those decrees that absolutely upset me.

Ben: I like the Quibbler one. “Any student found in possession of the magazine The Quibbler will be expelled. This is Educational Decree Number Twenty-seven, signed by Dolores Jane Umbridge.” This is my favorite because I think it’s funny that despite the fact that she said anyone found in possession is going to be expelled, the Weasley twins held a big – put a big copy of it up, and everyone still had it; it was just on the Hogwarts underground, which I really liked. Laura, Jess?

Laura: Well, I’d have to agree with you on that. I really liked that one, because I am anti-censorship, and I just love the way that the students reacted to that, and how they were just sort of like, yeah right, and they just went and did what they wanted to do anyway, and that’s how I think people should act in all situations when they’re being told…

Ben: Not in all situations.

Laura: No. When they’re being told that they are not allowed to view certain material, I think that is censorship, and you should be allowed to have access to all information.

Ben: Protest.

Jess: My favorite is number 29, the one Filch mentioned, but was never put into action. We didn’t really learn exactly what it entailed, but Filch said he would be able to hang people up by their ankles, and I just liked seeing Filch’s reaction to that.

Laura: Jess, you would like that, wouldn’t you? [laughs]

Show Close

Ben: Well, that wraps up another edition of MuggleCast. Andrew, Andrew, does that mean we’re over the hill? Are we over the hill?

Andrew: What hill?

Ben: The hill.

Andrew: Are you saying we’re only going through 80 episodes?

Ben: I don’t know.

Andrew: I don’t know guys, what’s going to happen in another 40?

Ben: Will we be old?

Laura: No.

Andrew: Will we be through Chapter-by-Chapter?

Laura: We might want to kill each other by the time we get to 80.

Andrew: Will we have… [laughs]

Ben: Once again, I am Ben Schoen.

Andrew: I am Andrew Sims.

Laura: I am Laura Thompson.

Ben: [Pretending to be Kevin] I am Kevin Steck.

Andrew: Kevin had to leave a little early, everyone.

Jess: And I am Jess Costain.

Laura: Yay. Jess.

Ben: Join us next…

Andrew: Thanks for joining us, Jess.

Ben: Yeah, thanks for joining us, Jess.

Jess: You’re welcome.

Ben: Join us next week, where we’ll be discussing all sorts of new Harry Potter related materials. I’m sorry we didn’t get to Dobby’s socks like I said we would.

Laura: I don’t remember – oh, okay.

Ben: Good night, everybody.

Laura: Bye.

Andrew: Bye.

Ben: Good morning. Early evening.


[Audio]: Hello, my name is Catherine Murphy, and I live in Dublin, Ireland. I just want you to know that I just got my MuggleCast T-shirt there a few days ago, and I am waiting for it to arrive, and I just can’t wait until it arrives. Yeah, I love the show, listen to it every week. Keep up the good work, bye.

[Audio]: MuggleNet, you rock my socks.

[Audio]: Hi, MuggleCast, I’d just like to say that I love, I absolutely love MuggleCast, and keep up the great work. I love MuggleCast. Okay, bye.

[Audio]: Hey, this is Brian from Virginia. Hey, Micah, and all the rest of you all, I wanted to say thanks for taking my mind off the repetitive actions of work. I listen to you all almost every day, a couple of times over and over again. Wanted to say thanks a lot, and peace.


Micah: JK Rowling, Stephen King, and John Irving will be holding a press conference on August 1st in New York City, a few hours prior to the first benefit for – pft.

Andrew: And he also has a ten-foot sausage in his pocket, so.

Ben: In his pants?

Laura: [Laughs] I was trying not to think dirty about that.

Andrew: His pocket. His pocket, Ben.

Laura: Sorry.

Jess: And as Emerson likes to say, [unintelligible].

Laura: Oh my God.

[Jess laughs]

Ben: Whoa.

Andrew: Okay. Too far, Jess.

Laura: No, he actually did say that.

Jess: That is a direct Emerson quote.

Andrew: Tonight’s podcast is rated PG. For mild – Jess.

Kevin: Sexual innuendos.

[Andrew and Jess and Laura laugh]

[Audio]: This is Andrew Sims’ little brother, Ryan Sims. Here is an Andrew Sims fact. Did you know Andrew Sims cannot whistle? Join us next week for another exciting fact about Andrew Sims.

Ben: [Imitating Hagrid] Keeper of keys and games at Hogwarts.


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