MuggleCast 55 Transcript
Andrew [Show Intro with music in background]: Because I screwed up last week
calling Episode 54 “Episode 55,” this is MuggleCast Episode 54 – but really
55, for September 10th, 2006. Does that make sense?
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[Andrew hums Intro music]
Andrew: Don’t you guys like this music?
Ben: Yeah, it’s excellent. [laughs]
Jamie: It’s very good. It’s very good.
Eric: John Williams at his best, Andrew.
Andrew: I think I’m the next Bono.
Jamie: It’s a drunk John Williams recording. He got back after a few drinks
and thought “I’m going to have a quickie on the keyboard.” [laughs]
Jamie: And that came out.
Andrew: Jamie, we don’t appreciate that kind of language on here.
Eric: Yeah, especially – well, you’re half way there, Andrew.
Jamie: What, “keyboard”?
Jamie: “Keyboard” is pretty disgusting, isn’t it? The word
Andrew: Welcome, everyone, to the show, but Ben – what’s up? There’s a lot
of noise going on, here.
Ben: I’m in my library and my Spanish teacher is trying to talk to me right
now while I’m trying to record this.
Andrew: Can you tell her to “shut up-o”, please-o?
Ben [laughs]: No, I can’t do that. They say “cállete.”
Andrew [laughs]: Anyway, to the introductions.
Ben: I’m Ben Schoen.
Eric: I’m Eric Scull.
Jamie: I’m Jamie Lawrence.
Andrew: And this is the late – no it’s not the latest. This is the show
where we bring you the latest in Harry Potter news, theories, discussions
and lots of Potter pickles. It’s been catching on, and I couldn’t be more
Ben: And Moundridge High School libraries.
Andrew: Yeah. [laughs] Ben, is there no one else – how many people
are in that library? It seems kind of quiet.
Jamie: Andrew, Andrew…
Jamie: No one’s in there at all. It’s Ben’s personal school library,
Andrew: Oh! [laughs] I see.
Jamie: In Moundridge each person gets their own library with a sort of
kitchen, bedroom, a plasma TV, all that kind of stuff. It’s pretty special.
Ben: Yeah. [laughs] Well, actually, actually I’m sitting on a giant, soft, comfy chair, which is very, very comfortable. And – yeah.
Jamie: You get three of those, don’t you, Ben?
Ben: Yeah, three of those, and actually, there’s a kid on the couch laying
down and staring at me right now.
Andrew: Ask him what he thinks of Harry Potter.
Ben [to student on the couch]: Hey, what do you think of Harry
Student: I don’t know.
Ben: He doesn’t know.
Andrew: [laughs] Ask him if he’s on pot, because it certainly sounds
Ben: [to student on the couch] My friend wants to know if you’re on
Ben: No, he’s not on pot.
Andrew: No? [laughs] Anyway…
Ben: We’ll go around and get more opinions from Moundridge High School
students here in a bit.
Andrew: Ooh! That sounds exciting.
Ben: Very exciting.
Andrew: [laughs]: But before we do anything else, Micah Tannenbaum is
in the MuggleCast News Center with the past week’s top Harry Potter news
Micah: Lord Voldemort was voted the number one villain in the
BigBadRead, an online Bloomsbury poll to find the UK’s favorite literary
villain from a children’s book.
Here’s what Jo had to say about this “honor”:
I am thrilled and honored beyond words that Lord Voldemort has been voted
best villain in the Big Bad Read poll. I am not sure how he would react to
knowing that he had won a Muggles’ unpopularity poll. A mixture of pleasure
that you recognized his power and menace, coupled with fury at your nerve at
mentioning his real name, I think. His author, however, is absolutely
MuggleNet staffer Natalie attended the premiere of Driving Lessons starring Rupert Grint and Julie Walters, in London’s Leicester Square. She managed to do a short interview with Rupert Grint, and also spoke briefly to Emma Watson, Julie Walters, and Bonnie Wright. You can check those out over on MuggleNet.com.
Driving Lessons hit theaters Friday in the UK. To coincide with its release,
a tea party was held earlier in Edinburgh. According to the Daily Mirror, JK
Rowling went along to support Rupert.
She tells The Ticket she is half-way through writing the seventh and
possibly final book, but the 41-year-old Scottish author is keeping
tight-lipped over rumors she’s planning to kill off Harry.
“I’m up to about 750 pages now, but I’m not telling anyone what happens to
Harry,” she says. “I’ve just come along to support Rupert who’s absolutely
terrific in Driving Lessons.”
Just keep in mind The Daily Mirror is a British tabloid, not exactly known for its accurate reporting.
Pope Benedict XVI’s senior exorcist claims the Harry Potter books contain
innumerable positive references to magic, “the satanic art.”
“Behind Harry Potter hides the signature of the king of the darkness, the
devil,” he told Vatican Radio. And according to the Daily Mail newspaper in
London, he added that the books attempt to make a false distinction between
black and white magic, when in fact, the distinction “does not exist,
because magic is always a turn to the devil.”
Yeah, I always find myself going into a hypnotic trance, floating above my
bed, while chanting indecipherable languages after I finished a re-read of
Prisoner of Azkaban, don’t you? You’re a senior exorcist! How about
becoming a lawyer? At least then people will believe what you say 20% of
the time as opposed to 10% of the time. And I hear the pay is better too.
Moving on, a recent interview was conducted with Alec Hopkins, the actor portraying
young Severus Snape in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. He
discusses filming, talking with Alan Rickman, and how he ended up with the
Entertainment Weekly has ranked the fourth Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, #36 on its list of the best “high school movies” of all time.
That’s all the news for this September 10th, 2006 edition of MuggleCast. Back
to the show.
Andrew: Okay, thank you, Micah.
Andrew: A couple announcements before we move along. T-shirts – MuggleCast
t-shirts. Purchase your t-shirts, k-thanks-bye.
Ben: Yeah, t-shirts.
Andrew: Also, Podcast Alley – don’t forget to vote. It’s a new month.
Don’t forget, boys and girls – Leaky Mug Live in Los Angeles, California on September 28, 7 PM, at the Borders of Westwood in L.A.
Ben: Westwood. Yeah.
Andrew: Yes, it’s going to be a fantastic event. We’re all going to be there. So, come out and support, represent, wear your MuggleCast t-shirts.
Jamie: Say hello.
Andrew: It’s going to be a lot of fun.
Ben: Wear your MuggleCast t-shirt.
Andrew: But, please do RSVP on LeakyMug.com, so we know that you’re coming.
Listener Rebuttal – Sirius and The Mirror
Andrew: Listener Rebuttals this week. Zoe…
Ben: Let me do it. I want to read this one.
Ben: Our first Listener Rebuttal comes from Zoe MacLeod, 17…
Jamie: McCloud. McCloud.
Ben: McCloud. From Newport Beach, California – right there in the heart of the O.C.
Hey guys! Love the show! Anyway, I was just thinking, maybe Sirius did
have the mirror with him when he fell through the veil but the reason that
Harry couldn’t contact him was because he had the say “Padfoot” instead of
“Sirius Black.” If James and Sirius did make the two-way mirrors, it would
make sense that they would use their nicknames like they did on the
Marauder’s Map. Just wondering what you guys think.
Jamie: Have we got to assume that if he went through the veil with his
mirror, that he’s still alive down there? Sort of bored out of his mind.
Ben: I think he’s down there eating Lucky Charms, you know. [laughs]
Jamie: Yeah, exactly. Yes, he is, he is.
Eric: Well, he…
Jamie: Andrew’s dad went to…
Ben: The veil? [laughs]
Jamie: The Department of Mysteries and…
Ben: And he threw a few boxes through. [laughs]
Jamie: Put his head through, and he’s like “Hey, Sirius, you getting a bit
hungry down there, are ya?” [laughs]
Eric: And then there was that whispering beyond the veil, “Thanks, mate.” But I
think we’ve discerned that it’s not the Killing Curse that hit Sirius when
he fell back into the veil to begin with, because he had time for his eyes to
widen with shock.
Jamie: It’s the hungry characteristic.
Eric: Curiosity characteristic. It’s kind of like “What’s going on?”
Eric: He might still be alive down there just eating Lucky Charms.
Jamie: Eric, you’ve just completely ruined that beautiful moment. When his
eyes widen, by using an over-used Americanized expression, like “Hey, what’s
Jamie: Sirius did not think, “Hey, what’s going on?”, trust me.
Eric: Okay, Jamie.
Jamie: Stuff went through his mind like, “Oh my god, I’m never going to see my
godson again. Oh my god, my house! Oh my god, all my friends!” Please don’t
cheapen it by saying that he thought “Hey guys, what’s going on here, dude?”
Eric: Well, no.
Eric: It said that “he had an expression of mixed shock and curiosity on his
face.” “Hey, what’s going on?” seemed to depict that. Well, he could have
also been saying [sings] “I’ve got a peaceful, easy feeling.”
Jamie: I don’t think he thought of singing.
Ben: Thanks, Eric.
Eric: Maybe he just thought that – he said, “This is a particularly
interesting phenomenon that is being observed right now. I wish that I would
not be falling backwards.”
Jamie: But rather forwards? To the great delight of the Ministry of Magic.
Ben: Right. [laughs] Our next Listener Rebuttal…
Andrew: An interesting point though. Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Back… We
never really responded to the actual rebuttal.
Jamie: No, we didn’t.
Eric: Well, I think it’s… I don’t think that’s correct, because even though it’s – I think
it would of came with extra instruction if… Sirius would’ve given Harry a
little bit more in the note if he had to say “Padfoot” instead of “Sirius
Ben: Eric makes a fair point.
Eric: Or Harry would go up to it and say “Well, this thing is broken, because
I say ‘Sirius Black’ and it doesn’t show me him.” And then he would throw it and break it.
Andrew: Yeah, but then…
Jamie: But it’s not future – I don’t mean future, I mean it’s not like sort of security proof. That doesn’t make sense. But, you know what I mean? It’s not…
Jamie: Anyone could walk up to it and say, “Sirius Black,” whereas the name “Padfoot” is only known to a few people so…
Ben: That’s true.
Andrew: More secure?
Jamie: It’s like, yeah. It’s more secure.
Eric: Whereas, the Marauder’s Map, you need to specifically say, what? “I solemnly swear I am up to no good.” Do you mean like that kind of secure? Like, it’s not…
Jamie: Yeah, yeah, yeah, kind of. It’s like, if you knew it was Sirius’ then you could just walk up and say, “Sirius Black,” whereas…
Jamie: If you said, “Padfoot,” you have to actually think about that.
Eric: Yeah, and if they were the only pair in the world, you could just say, “Other mirror,” and [laughs] it would probably work.
Jamie: [laughs] Yeah, exactly, yeah.
Listener Rebuttal – Availability of The Two-Way Mirror
Andrew: Next rebuttal.
Ben: Our next rebuttal comes from Jimmy Rose. “In your last episode there was some discussion about the commercial availability…”
Andrew: Hold on, wait a second, wait a second. Hold on.
Andrew: It’s interesting how Ben suddenly wants to do all this reading. I kind of think he’s showing off for the crack addict there.
Jamie: Yeah, exactly. I think he’s…
Ben: Oh yeah, yeah, I’m showing off for the two people…
Ben: …in the library.
[Andrew and Jamie laugh]
Ben: I’ve done the reading before.
Jamie: Are you charging them both rent, Ben?
Jamie: Or is it just like – are you charging them both rent in your library? Or…
Ben: [laughs] Yes, I am.
Andrew: He’s charging – he marketed it as a Live Podcast at his school and only two people showed up.
Jamie: Yeah, he did. Yeah.
Ben: I’ve been selling t-shirts all day. Selling…
Andrew: Yeah, okay. [laughs] Anyway…
Ben: Our next listener rebuttal’s from Jimmy Rose.
“In your last episode, there was some discussion about the commercial availability of two-way mirrors. Given what we know about the wizarding world, this seems unlikely to me. In Britain at least, there are two main areas for wizarding commerce – Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade. If you consider what is for sale -or at least what’s mentioned as being for sale in the books – you’ll find that most of it has to do with food, joke items, clothing, animals and broomsticks. We’ve yet to see the wizarding world’s version of The Sharper Image. In fact…”
[Ben and Eric laugh]
Ben: “…we’ve got a lot of evidence that there is a lot of call for convenience items. Take for example the Remembrall. It lets you know that you’ve gotten – that you’ve forgotten something, but gives you no help at all in remembering what was forgotten. If that’s the best way they can…” [laughs] “If that’s the best they can do…”
Jamie: This is poorly read, Ben, I must admit.
Ben: “…for commercially available personal organization…”
Sorry, people keep walking in here and looking at me. [laughs]
“…I find it hard to believe that you’d walk into a store and find something as useful as the two-way mirror.”
Anyways, we know what he’s saying – we know what Jimmy is saying here.
Jamie: I agree, but it could be like a special mail order item that you can only get from a certain – from TwoWayMirrors.com.
Andrew: Yeah. [laughs]
Jamie: Or something like that. It’s like… It could not be a sort of. It could just be like a patented item that only one company sells. Or something like that.
Andrew: [mocking Jamie] Pain-te-ted. Pain-te-ted.
Andrew: Like Linux.
Eric: You know what’s interesting about the Remembralls, is that they were banned from the O.W.L. tests in Book Five, but I find that interesting because they aren’t actually supposed to tell you what you’ve forgotten. Or, like, according to the movie.
Jamie: Yeah. You could have forgotten anything.
Ben: You going to know you’ve forgotten something…
Eric: Why are Remembralls, you know… I mean, unless it’s like… If it’s good on a multiple choice answer where you’re like, “Okay, I think it’s B,” and then it says, “You’ve forgotten the truth,” or something.
Jamie: Because it’s still an aid that stops your thing.
Eric: It is an aid, yeah.
Jamie: But, the thing is, this is also about Felix Felicis. It says it… Slughorn says that it’s a banned thing in competitions, athletic events, so, you can only use it on an ordinary day. But what constitutes an ordinary day? It’s like that, which is why I don’t see how Felix Felicis could possibly ever be allowed, really. Because, who decides if it’s an ordinary day? But, that’s completely gone off on a tangent, so…
Eric: Yeah, I like what…
Jamie: …I think we should get back to Jimmy Rose.
Eric: I like what Jimmy Rose was saying about convenience items and also how the wizards want to impress each other with different gifts and things.
Jamie: Oh yeah, yeah.
Eric: I think that’s cool. But, obviously, a lot of that is also Misuse of Muggle Artifacts, like the Ford Anglia. So…
Jamie: Yeah. But he points out that wizards like to change ordinary items like using unheard of magical spells, that kind of thing, to change them for their own good, like the Marauder’s Map. It’s clearly taken a strong bit of individual personalized magic to make it how it is. And so, the two-way mirrors… I mean, I think they just bought two mirrors…
Andrew: And enchanted them.
Jamie: …from the mirror shop in Hogsmeade, yeah. And enchanted them.
Eric: And I think there are several other rules that they could work with if they wanted to do that. Such as, the rule of seven, which seems to be present, at least to Voldemort and Horcruxes. Seven is a magical number. And also the rule of pairs, as described by Dumbledore.
Tangent: Phone Booths
Jamie: Yeah. Can we just talk about… Jimmy mentions the phonebooks – the phone booth outside of St. Mungo’s.
Eric: Yeah, that’s…
Jamie: Sorry, outside of Purge and Dowse.
Andrew: Ministry of Magic.
Jamie: No, no, no, no.
Eric: It’s Purge and Dowse, yeah.
Jamie: Yeah, yeah, sorry. The Ministry of Magic. No…
Andrew: It’s the Ministry of Magic, isn’t it?
Eric: We should have given Leaky that question.
Jamie: No. It’s the Ministry of Magic, isn’t it?
Eric: Yeah, it’s the Ministry of Magic.
Jamie: Yeah, sorry, yeah.
Eric: The phone booth.
Jamie: It seems… Yeah. This is completely off on a tangent again, but I was just thinking, it seems a bit weird that they choose that thing to get into the Ministry because it’s – one person’s number in the real world has got to end in “MAGIC” or start in “MAGIC.”
Andrew: Yeah, but there are only… Well, that phone – does that phone really work?
Jamie: Yeah. No, yeah.
Ben: No, no. I doubt it actually dials out.
Jamie: Because I would be scared if… I would be scared if I was sitting there, if I was standing in there and I dialed my friend’s number and the phone booth…
Jamie: …went down into the earth. I’d think something was screwing up.
Andrew: Yeah, but it’s just, “MAGIC,” and in the book it’s described that nobody would ever approach it because it’s so worn down.
Eric: There’s like shattered panes of glass.
Andrew: Yeah. It’s…
Ben: You probably have to dial out anyways.
Jamie: There had to be somebody who…
Jamie: What do you mean, you’ve got to dial out?
Ben: Well, sometimes you have to enter a number.
Andrew: Well, if you just dial “MAGIC” and stop, then it’ll…
Jamie: Oh, well. Yeah, but somebody, somebody who’s read the Harry Potter books will probably go there now and…
Ben: Yeah, no. That’s like saying somebody…
Jamie: And dial, “MAGIC.”
Ben: No, that’s like saying somebody would have to be able to stumble on…
Jamie: I’m joking, Benjamin.
Ben: No, no. I’m saying that’s like saying someone could be able to stumble upon Hogwarts. It could have the same anti-Muggle charms that Hogwarts does.
Jamie: Yeah, it could, it could. But there must be some easier way, though, of doing it. Yeah, I mean, it probably does, but still.
Ben: Of course, there is probably some easier way, but that’s the way it is.
Eric: Well, that’s just the Muggle entrance too.
Andrew: Yeah. Deal with it.
Jamie: Yeah. Because, yeah. Let’s just deal with everything. Every single show should just be, “Hi, welcome to MuggleCast. Deal with it.”
Ben: That was hilarious. That’s a real knee-slapper, Jamie.
Jamie: “And that wraps up the show this week. I’m Andrew Sims.”
Andrew: Yeah, I’m on the floor. I’m in tears.
Eric: There’s that British humor.
Jamie: Well, Ben, Ben. Okay, well…
Jamie: At least I don’t think that Sirius… This is going to get you, Eric, but…
Jamie: I don’t need it to only get you. It’s going to get all of you in general…
Jamie: …because your jokes are so obvious. “Hey, guys! And he was like,’ Dude, what’s happenin’ here, man?'” That’s the kind of jokes – obvious stuff.
Eric: That was not a joke!
Ben: That wasn’t a joke.
Jamie: I don’t care! I don’t care! You’re going to take…
Andrew: All right, anyway…
Eric: That was inflection. That was what I thought Sirius would say.
Jamie: Just ’cause you don’t understand the nuances and subtleties of
the British humor, you know?
Ben: That wasn’t even funny, though. Humor means it’s funny.
Jamie: Okay, Ben. Okay, whatever, Ben. Whatever.
Listener Rebuttal – Sirius: Harry, Use The Mirror!
Ben: Our next rebuttal comes from Stacey, 24, from Washington. Once
again, about the two-way mirror:
“I recently read Order of the Phoenix, and something about the mirror stuck me, and I have not been able to get it out of my mind. In Chapter 29 of Order of the Phoenix, Fred and George created diversions …”
[Jamie and Andrew laugh]
Ben: “…so Harry could use Umbridge’s fireplace undetected to contact…” [laughs] “…Sirius and ask him about the ‘Snape’s Worst Memory.’ Why, oh, why didn’t Sirius tell Harry to use the mirror instead of going to all that trouble? Perhaps he didn’t want Lupin to know he’d given a two-way mirror to Harry. But, I think the situation was important enough for Sirius to encourage Harry to use the mirror. But, I suppose if Sirius had told Harry, the rest of the book may not have happened.”
Eric: Yeah, I think this is something where you were reading a little bit too much into it. I just re-read this scene about two days ago, and it was Sirius. It was one of those things where Sirius just didn’t think about it. He was, you know… Harry was in the fire, and whereas Sirius would say, “What are you doing here? You’re risking your neck. Why didn’t you use the mirror?” Where that could have happened, he was basically just, you know, excited to have any contact with Harry. Remember, the kind of person Sirius is. He was very excited, but also very worried, and he just wanted to hear what Harry had to say, so that he could get off and on his way.
Ben: And remember, hindsight is 20/20. I mean, it could have just
been an oversight, you know.
Eric: Yeah, and…
Jamie: Something about the mirror hit her.
Ben: And when Harry hid the mirror, he buried it at the bottom of
his trunk. So, he didn’t want to communicate with Sirius, because he was
worried he was going to get him in trouble, or whatever. So, he decided not to. I just think it was…
Eric: Plus, at the time… Yeah.
Ben: Like, when you’re not in that situation it’s different.
Eric: And Lupin had to run and get Sirius, too. He’s, you know – Harry
came through, saw Lupin.
Eric: And Lupin just had to run up while Sirius was
feeding Buckbeak, and out of the blue. It’s just one of those things that
slips your mind. The fact is, Harry is in the fire, needs to talk to you,
you know? Do you say, “Why didn’t you use this, it’s much safer”? It just
slipped his mind.
Jamie: Ben, if I make a joke about, “Something about the mirror struck
me, and I’ve not been able to get it out of my head.” If I say, “Oh, it’s a
shard of glass,” or something like that, are you going to be like, “Oh, dude, that’s not funny, man!”
Eric: Why? Well, if it’s not funny…
Ben: If it’s not funny, it’s not funny. Sorry, Jamie.
Ben: Sorry you’re… “Hey, this is MuggleCast. Deal with it, man.”
Jamie: I’ve kind of spoiled it now by… I’ve kind of spoiled… laughs]
Eric: Jamie, yes, you’re British, yes, you’re magical, but if your
joke is not funny, we will not laugh. [laughs]
Jamie: Ok, well, that kind of spoiled it now by asking you if you’d
find it funny, so let’s move on.
Andrew: This is a very dry humor podcast. All right, well, Ben has to
get put of here ’cause, for some reason, he podcasts at school now.
Jamie: He has to get out because…
Eric: He’s kicked out of school for podcasting.
Jamie: No, no, no. The personal libraries are normally 24 hours, but
they’re doing some refurbishments there. So, he’s got to get out.
Eric: Ohhh. Adding in like a hot tub machine, a slushy…
Jamie: Yeah, precisely, yeah.
[Eric and Jamie laugh]
Jamie: A free recording studio, as well, so the sound quality of the
next MuggleCast is going to be amazing.
Main Discussion: Power and Magical Ability
Andrew: Laura and Micah are going to join us a little bit later in the
show, but for now, [clears throat] we do have a main discussion.
Well, just a discussion, for everyone this week. [laughs]
Jamie: Yeah, it’s… Well, no, I think “just a discussion” is a bit mean. It’s sort of a “mai” discussion, you know? Doesn’t have the “n” on it.
Andrew: It’s a what? It’s a “mai”?
Jamie: It’s a “mai” discussion.
Andrew: Okay. [laughs]
Jamie: It’s almost a discussion. It’s just slightly lacking, you know?
Eric: [laughs] Slightly lacking?
Jamie: Slightly lacking, yeah. This week, we are going to discuss the difference in power and magical ability between Voldemort and Dumbledore, and every other wizard, witch, and everything. So, we’re going to start with a small intro, and then go on to ask a few questions that we’re going to discuss.
Does Magical Ability Stem From Knowledge?
Jamie: Throughout the series, there have been constant reminders of the difference in power between Voldemort and Dumbledore, and other witches and wizards. References are often made to the incredible powers Voldemort has at his disposal, such as: Peter Pettigrew saying, “There are powers the Dark Lord possesses,” stuff like that, and also that Dumbledore is the only wizard that Voldemort has ever feared. Judging by Dumbledore’s easy defeat of the Death Eaters at the Ministry of Magic, e.g. him casting that rope thing that binds them all together, and his difficult and deadly battle with Voldemort, are we safe to assume that these two wizards are on a par, or close to a par on ability, where they’re miles and miles ahead of other witches and wizards?
And, that is the intro, and our first question – which kind of – it isn’t really answered in the main discussion, but it kind of stems from it. It’s is magical ability, does it stem from people’s knowledge, like in Star Wars? As in your knowledge of the Force? So, Yoda is, you know, sort of the best because he’s so old, and he started the Force, so he knows its nuances and its subtleties, and he can use that to greater ability.
Andrew: I think that certainly stands for Dumbledore because of his age, but, I mean, the last sentence in your opening, though. Wasn’t that a question? “Are we safe to assume that these two wizards…?”
Jamie: Yes, it was. It was. It was. Yeah. We could talk about that.
Andrew: Because I would say, yes. Dumbledore is the most – what’s the wording? Powerful wizard? Most powerful wizard alive?
Jamie: Ummm, yeah.
Eric: I just heard it described that Voldemort was actually the
most powerful. In fact by Dumbledore, I think, himself. Towards the end,
he said that Voldemort… And you know, again this is kind of a question
that, you know, in the beginning of the first book, McGonagall and
Dumbledore sitting on the ledge, and McGonagall says…
Tangent: The Whomping Willow
Jamie: K-I-S-S-I-N-G? [laughs]
Eric: No, that’s in the tree later on.
[Andrew and Eric laugh]
Eric: But, could they actually bewitch the Whomping Willow to sit in it? I don’t know, anyway.
Eric: You know what? Maybe the Whomping Willow is just tired of being used by Dumbledore and McGonagall. But, anyway.
Jamie: I think it is. It’s just – they spend so much time up there, and thinks, “I just can’t watch this anymore.”
Andrew: It got its name, the “Whomping” Willow, because Dumbledore was
whomping McGonagall. [in high-pitched voice] Ahhh!
Eric: Oooh! That was a good one! Even though it would be really funny.
Back to Main Discussion: Dumbledore and Voldemort’s Power
Eric: You know, she says that, “you’re too noble to use some powers,”
and he blushes, of course, but in Book 5, Dumbledore actually does say and I think it’s okay for him to admit that Voldemort is… He said specifically, “Not powerful, but his extensive knowledge of magic…”
Jamie: Yeah, exactly. Yeah, yeah.
Eric: “…covers more than any other wizard, including myself.” And I
think it’s safe to say that Voldemort would at least know more different
kinds than Dumbledore. But, again, Dumbledore holds his own and Dumbledore was easily – well, not easily – but he was able to detect the whole, “cut your wrist, open the door, use the thing across the lake.” He was able to detect the magic, so they’re very obviously close in power.
Jamie: Yeah, though I agree, but I just think that it’s funny – well, not really funny – but how at the Ministry of Magic, Dumbledore just walked in cast one spell and all of the Death Eaters just didn’t have a chance. And with Bellatrix, as well, who’s clearly pretty powerful magically. He just bewitched the Fountain of Magical Brethren and the thing just came after her, and she fired spells uselessly off it’s chest. You know? It just seems like he can do absolutely anything against anyone.
Andrew: So easily.
Eric: Well, he could.
Jamie: Yeah, so easily, whereas it’s just against Voldemort that he has trouble. That battle in the Ministry, I doubt any other wizard could have stood up to that amount of magical power being transferred back and forth.
Eric: Even Harry? You think?
Jamie: In terms of blow on blow, if Harry had dodged it and jumped around and used his mind like he has, then, yes, probably, but I can’t imagine if they had a sort of [laughs] slapping contest for wizards, where you slap the other person in the face and then they slap you and it just keeps happening until you give up. If they did that with wands and spells, I can’t imagine Harry being able to stand up to Voldemort’s or Dumbledore’s things.
Eric: Oh, obviously not.
Jamie: It doesn’t seem like normal spells.
Eric: They aren’t.
Jamie: They don’t only fire stuff… They don’t only fire stuff out of their wands. They bewitch and ensnare, and cause the water to rise up and do stuff like that.
Jamie: Other people I just don’t think can…
Eric: No. The whole water thing covering Voldemort, like Voldemort enclosed in this case of like water, and even the fact that Voldemort left his physical body to possess Harry. Even the fact that he just jumped out of his body and into Harry’s and his body disappeared completely from the physical plane.
Eric: How can you do that?
Jamie: Well, exactly.
Eric: And that’s what makes the battle so cool to see. Sorry, Andrew.
Andrew: And yet, in the Ministry, he continued to be disregarded as this mad man who just had no influence in the Ministry of Magic.
Eric: Oh, yeah.
Andrew: It’s very sad.
Eric: Well, that’s the question, if Dumbledore ran things, you know. If Dumbledore was Minister of Magic, but he would never want that. He just wanted to teach students.
Jamie: Yeah, precisely.
Eric: Teaching students and governing the already grown-up public are two separate choices, I think, for your life.
Jamie: But don’t you think that going back to Voldemort’s power especially, the Aurors are supposed to catch dark wizards. I just don’t think you can call Voldemort simply a dark wizard.
Eric: Because he’s a Dark Lord.
Jamie: He’s not only a dark wizard. Yeah, exactly. The Aurors are impressive and stuff, but if Dumbledore can curse Dawlish, and I’m not going to say it.
Andrew: Yeah, thank you.
Eric: You just did. You’ve given it enough to John.
Jamie: [laughs] I’m going to say it as quickly as possible. Quickly as possible. If Dumbledore can curse Dawlish so easily with no effort whatsoever, and he’s got Outstanding in every single N.E.W.T. he’s ever taken…
Jamie: …and along with five other people at the same time before or however many people it was, how can Dawlish have any chance of catching Voldemort? It’s just inconceivable.
Eric: That’s why it is, but that’s the thing. They should’ve used Dumbledore. They should’ve… Now I bet they’re kicking themselves in the butt because Dumbledore was so powerful.
Jamie: Don’t you think, also, that Book Six especially, Dumbledore’s mental and physical decline, I think, is showing. That while he could exchange blow on blow with Voldemort for awhile, Voldemort is more powerful than him overall.
Jamie: I think if they… In Book Six, if it came down to a duel, Voldemort would win. And I think that’s putting everything on Harry. Absolutely everything on Harry.
Eric: Yes, but I think that also goes to say that, why then, is it exactly a bad thing that Dumbledore died, anyway? Because, if he…
Jamie: Well, precisely, yeah.
Eric: He obviously was declining. Whether that was, I guess power, and if you remember age is kind of a factor.
Jamie: Oh, yeah.
Eric: It’s got to be. You know…
Andrew: Definitely, in Book Six, played a role.
Eric: The soul would, of course, be an advantage Dumbledore had over Voldemort. Dumbledore told Harry that he only suspected one wizard or any wizard, or all wizards in general, of only having one Horcrux, which we can kind of infer is Grindelwald, but nobody knows. But he said the most he thinks any wizard had of Horcruxes was one. Obviously, that says a great… How did Voldemort acquire that knowledge of how to do that, not just once, but six times? Maybe he talked to the guy who did it the first time, but for the term to even exist, you’d think that enough people would…
Jamie: So, how’s your Horcrux?
Andrew: Yeah. [laughs]
Jamie: But, it’s just… Yeah, yeah, yeah. I agree.
Jamie: Amen. I concur. But, I just… It just seems that the reason for Dumbledore’s death was that he couldn’t teach Harry anything more. He taught him everything he knew, and since he couldn’t take on Voldemort for him, you know?
Eric: There wasn’t anything left for him, apart from to die. It sounds terrible but, apart for him to die and infuriate Harry even more so that he’s going to go and kick Voldemort’s butt, man.
Eric: Yeah. Well, he could of told Harry how he, kind of, burned his hand off. So, I don’t think we’re talking exactly about the second part of this, as in comparison to other wizards. We’ve talked about them to each other.
Jamie: Don’t you think that he could, both of them… All of the Death Eaters are scared of Voldemort, so clearly he has weapons that they can’t even comprehend.
Eric: Oh yeah.
Jamie: It just seems like that he has everything that everyone else, you know? I mean like even people, obviously, respect him, as well. Like Ollivander said, he did terrible things.
Eric: But great.
Jamie: Sorry, great things but terrible, yes. Awful, but great things. He’s so powerful. People respect power, even if it’s terrible power and the same with Dumbledore. Everyone respected him. Hogwarts was safe because Dumbledore was there, you know? And if Voldemort feared Dumbledore, you can’t disagree with Voldemort, who hates being weak, who hates weakness, who hates being scared of other things. If he personally feared Dumbledore, then what does that say about Dumbledore, you know?
Eric: Mhm. Well that’s true, too, but that’s just the thing. Again, that’s why it’s so fun to watch the battle in Book Five, because Voldemort just comes up with some kind of weird sounding talisman reverberation thing and Dumbledore counters it with some kind of…
Eric: …shield of unknown…
Eric: …presence that makes a gong…
Jamie: Shields of Glory. [laughs]
Eric: Yeah, well it was a gong sound. Remember that. It was like a…
Jamie: That was Voldemort’s shield. That was Voldemort’s shield.
Eric: Yes, but that was amazing. It was like a strange gong humming as in response to Dumbledore’s…
Eric: But then, it’s just…
Jamie: What spell did he cast then, if he didn’t seek to kill him there? After Voldemort could tell from that.
Eric: I know, isn’t that the coolest question in the world? Because Voldemort…
Eric: …immediately said, after he reflected that spell, “You wish not to kill me, Dumbledore?”
Jamie: Yeah, “You didn’t seek to kill me?”
Eric: And of course they got into their, “You do not know that there are worst things than death,” and stuff like that. But Voldemort knew exactly – he must have known exactly what that spell was going to do to him, even though…
Jamie: Yeah, he did. Yeah.
Eric: …Dumbledore didn’t open his mouth.
Jamie: I just can’t think what kind of spell that could possibly have been.
Eric: And how do you acquire that knowledge of what, you know, with the gong’s sound it means it was this charm, you know, it was this spell?
Jamie: Yeah, exactly.
Eric: It’s just unbelievable.
Jamie: He clearly sort of read music by ear so, you know, each spell makes a different sound and then he just hears it and, you know, knows from there.
Eric: [laughs] What do you guys think of Dumbledore as a Legilimens? Because here was a question in Book Five about Dumbledore teaching him himself. Like, it was tossed around, except for, obviously, the fact that, you know, Harry would, upon looking at Dumbledore, explode into flames, but [laughs] he said, “I didn’t teach him myself because I didn’t want to reveal anything to Voldemort.” And stuff. But Dumbledore as a Legilimens seems kind of cool. And…
Jamie: He’s clearly amazing, though, because he’s amazing at everything. [laughs]
Eric: Oh, he’s amazing at everything. I think he got, what, perfect scores in Transfiguration and Charms or something.
Eric: They were like perfect N.E.W.T.S.
Jamie: He did stuff with a wand that was never seen before or something.
Eric: Oh yeah, Tofty, right. Tofty said that, yeah.
Eric: “Stuff with a wand I’d never seen before.” Things like that. It makes you think like it’s not an acquirable knowledge. It makes it seem like it just…
Jamie: It’s just Dumbledore, it’s unnatural.
Eric: Like nobody can just do things with their wand like that, and that was when Dumbledore was at Hogwarts, when he was 17 years old. Here he is 150.
Jamie: Maybe it’s like, sort of, you know, Polymaths from the Renaissance period. It’s like the wizarding equivalent. They’re like. They’re just…. Once in a while a wizard, who comes along, who excels in absolutely everything and is ridiculously powerful magically. Like, I bet the Four Founders of Hogwarts were miles ahead of…
Eric: That’s the other thing I wanted to bring up.
Jamie: …other wizards their age.
Andrew: Oh yeah.
Jamie: It just seems like that to me.
Connection to the Founders
Eric: Well, Voldemort, having Slytherin’s blood in him.
Eric: Again the pureblood thing is supposed to, you know, inbreeding, on the whole, is supposed to affect genetics and things like that, make people…
Eric: …more maniacal and evil and stuff like that, but, the power, at least, or the richness, I mean, if we’re to think Dumbledore is any kind of descendent of Gryffindor or something else, that could have a play in it, too. So, maybe blood does matter in, like, the slightest of ways…
Eric: …where you may be a little bit more susceptible to things, but were the Four Founders all pureblood, though? I mean, do we know that?
Eric: But it’s kind of implied by the whole Slytherin connection that, at least, well, Slytherin must have been pureblood.
Jamie: Well, yeah, yeah.
Eric: But where does that… I don’t know where that starts.
Magical Knowledge vs. Power
Jamie: But then in relation to other witches and wizards, do you think that they are?
Eric: They are what?
Jamie: Miles ahead? Miles ahead of them? They could beat anyone.
Andrew: The Heads of Houses are miles ahead?
Jamie: No, no, no, no, no. Voldemort and Dumbledore.
Jamie: Do you think that, I mean, it’s like Chess Masters, you know; they can beat every single chess player in a club. Or then Chess Grandmasters can beat every single Chess Master and stuff like that, you know? I just think that they’re absolutely ahead of everyone and in duels they, you know? It just seems like
Andrew: I don’t know about light years. What do you mean, exactly? Just ahead in knowledge or skill? Because isn’t the knowledge…
Jamie: For Both. Everything.
Andrew: …that they have in common?
Jamie: No, but I mean, okay. If Dumbledore and Voldemort had a… If there was a competition where every single person dueled and it was like a knockout thing so, if you lost, you went home. I think Voldemort and Dumbledore would be facing each other in the final battle.
Andrew: Oh yeah.
Jamie: However many people came into it. It’s just like beating absolutely everyone.
Andrew: I definitely agree, skill-wise, but I don’t know about knowledge because, it seems like it would be like Horcruxes, for example.
Eric: They’re not common knowledge.
Jamie: No but, Voldemort didn’t want that memory to learn about Horcruxes. He wanted it to learn about what Slughorn told Voldemort about Horcruxes. There’s a difference. It isn’t though he didn’t know about Horcruxes. And in the first chapter of Book Six when Fudge says that, sorry, the Muggle Prime Minister asks, “Is he back?” and Fudge says, “I don’t know, and Dumbledore won’t explain it properly.”
Jamie: It’s like Dumbledore is the only person who…
Eric: Understands it.
Jamie: …understands it. You know? And it just seems like, in terms of power…
Eric: There was…
Jamie: …in terms of knowledge, that he’s ahead of everyone.
Eric: There was something else he said, too. I think he was explaining to Harry – it’s at the end of Book Five after Sirius’ death, in his office. He explains to Harry, he says that the enchantment placed on Privet Drive is of an ancient magic that, obviously, Voldemort underestimates, or hates and, therefore, underestimates, but he also says that, “I think that I found a connection or a way to protect you that…”
Eric: “…maybe no other wizard has.”
Eric: He said something along the lines of where, “I’m the only one who really knows how to do this particular kind of thing, so I did…”
Jamie: Yes. Yeah.
Eric: “…because I invest faith in my own intelligence.”
Jamie: Also, I assume we should assume that the two Fidelius Charms. Sorry, not the two. The Fidelius Charm that was used with the Secret Keeper was performed by Dumbledore? Because Flitwick says in Prisoner of Azkaban, that it’s an immensely complex spell.
Jamie: And I think when he says it’s an immensely complex spell, it’s sort of, it really is immensely complex. It’s not just like, brewing a Draught of Living Death, which is damn hard, but not, you know, impossible.
Jamie: It really is only some of the most difficult things in the world. I bet Dumbledore conjured that.
Eric: One question is, what it entails? Obviously, it’s a little more than a “swish and flick.” It’s even more than a Patronus…
Eric: …thinking of a happy thought.
Jamie: Oh ten… A mill… Yeah, but this is the thing; I think it’s like a million times more than a Patronus or Fidelius…
Eric: But what other ways are there? What could you possibly… Do you need to empty your mind, or do you need to be in a state of meditation when you create things like that?
Jamie: Ask Dumbledore.
Eric: Ask Dumbledore? I can’t. Unfortunately…
Jamie: Oh wait, he’s dead.
Andrew: He’s dead. [laughs]
Jamie: I think we’ve pretty much agreed that Dumbledore and Voldemort are ridiculously, ridiculously powerful or, sorry, to correct myself there, Voldemort is ridiculously, ridiculously powerful; Dumbledore was ridiculously, ridiculously powerful.
[Eric mumbles something]
Jamie: And that they… Sorry, yeah, yeah. And that they could beat any person in a duel, and that people look up to them and respect them and admire them…
Eric: That would be good.
Jamie: …even Voldemort.
Eric: I mean… Sorry, I didn’t want to interrupt you.
Jamie: Go on. I thought we were wrapping this up
Eric: Oh, well. I… But a final thought, if I may. The… One of the things I think about
Dumbledore, too, is potentially the reason he might know as much is because, well, a) he seeks it, but things like, I just thought of the scene by the lake with the Merpeople, when Dumbledore was speaking Mermish. You know, I’m not saying there aren’t institutions that may teach you Mermish, but Dumbledore’s the kind of person like that who would care and who would seek to…
Jamie: Yeah, yeah.
Eric: …communicate with the residents of obviously the lake where his school is.
Jamie: So it’s diplomacy, as well as…
Eric: I think good diplomacy is…
Jamie: …magical ability. Eric, I am going to put you on the spot here and ask you a question. Quite a difficult one. What is the name of the leader of the Mermaids, sorry, the Merpeople in the lake.
Eric: I do not know. Wait, wait, wait…
Jamie: Andrew do you know?
Eric: Wait, wait, wait.
Jamie: No, Googling it, Eric.
Eric: No, I’m not Googling it…
Jamie: You naughty, naughty, naughty boy.
Eric: You would hear my naughty, naughty, naughty fingers typing the naughty, naughty, naughty keys.
Jamie: Good then, that’s fine.
Eric: I… I… I…
Jamie: Shall I tell you?
Eric: I know it’s got some kind of a – what’s that called?
Jamie: Word in it? Yeah, it’s pretty good.
Eric: The “ch,” “gh,” type sounds. What are they? “Ch,” “ck”.
Jamie: [sounds out different combinations of letters] “Gchs”? “Chs”? “Ghs”?
Eric: It – not “chs”, but also “sh,” the actual groupings of…
Jamie: I’ll tell you. Shall I tell you?
Jamie: It’s Merf… Sorry, Merchieftainess Murcus.
Eric: Is that actually in the book?
Jamie: It is.
Eric: What page?
Jamie: I don’t know!
[Eric and Jamie laugh]
Eric: Oooh, PWNed! All right.
Crackpot Theory of the Week: Voldemort’s Wand is a Horcrux
Andrew: It’s time for another installment of the Crackpot Theory of the Week. We’ve gotten lots of…
[Jamie hums a tune]
Andrew: Oooh, I like that music.
Eric: I like that, too.
Andrew: Someone make a remix out of that. [laughs]
Jamie: It’s kind of Layla. It’s kind of… Not… Yeah, yeah.
Eric: [hums Layla]
Jamie: Layla by Clapton. [hums Layla]
Andrew: Mmmm. Yeah.
Jamie: It’s not actually, at all. I’ve just decided it. Sorry.
Andrew: Oh. [laughs] I just pretended like I knew it, so…
Eric: [singing to the tune of Layla]
Crackpot, you’ve got me on my knees. Crackpot…
Jamie: It’s “Ley.” It’s “l-e-y.” There’s not “la” on this one, though.
Andrew: Okay, I guess that’s it. [laughs] Go ahead. Go for it Jamie.
Jamie: Okay, this is from Scott, 16, from Australia. And, Eric, this is your Crackpot Theory of the Week. [speaks very fast] The final Horcrux is Voldemort’s wand. Go.
Andrew: [laughs] Go!
Jamie: [laughs] Go!
Eric: Where is Voldemort’s wand? Where has it been? How did he get it back? There is only one explanation for this, and this is it: Voldemort’s wand is actually a Horcrux. He preserved himself inside it, and it has the ability to skitter across the floors and through the pages of all seven books or rather the first four or five books, and that is how Voldemort retrieved it. Nobody was able to find it because, well, the Voldemort inside of it just moved the wand slightly away from everybody, so that once he was destroyed it was not buried amongst the rubble, and throughout time it was just seen in the corners of the HP universe, just browsing and viewing what was going on. So that, by the time that Voldemort regained control of his wand, it would then be able to supply him with the knowledge and experience of… [long pause] I don’t know maybe it’s hanging out with Trevor in the Chamber of Secrets, I really don’t know.
[Another long pause]
Jamie: Not bad Eric, not bad at all.
Andrew: Yeah, that wasn’t bad.
Eric: [makes uncertain noise] Ahhhh…
Jamie: It’s getting better.
Eric: I’m still tweaking, tweaking some things. Could we possibly do another one? I know it’s a little bit much to ask, but…
Jamie: Yes, yes go on.
Eric: I love these so much. There’s so many people, I got ten or twenty of them.
Andrew: There’s just so many people. It’s not my fault it sucks.
Eric: [laughs] What?
Andrew: Ahhh. What do you think of that one?
Jamie: Errr, I immediately think of a point that is of… One sec, I’ll type it to you.
Andrew: Let me read the points that Scott brought up. Voldemort who values his magical prowess above all else would consider his wand almost part of him, a sensible place to keep a part of his soul, as he will always have it with him. Another point, his wand managed to survive the explosion that wrecked Godric’s Hollow. Normal wood would have been burned to cinders. This could mean his wand is protected. And the final point…
Jamie: Oooh yeah.
Andrew: Wizards are very attached to their wands. Cedric polished his [mispronounces] regularly, [enunciates] regularly.
Eric: [laughs] I bet he did.
Andrew: Harry says he is fond of his wand, and that it can’t help being related to Voldemort via its core. His wand connects him to the magical world: the locket, the diary and the ring connect him to Slytherin, etcetera.
Eric: Hmmm. I had not thought about the wand connecting him to the wizarding world. I think that’s cool.
Jamie: Eric, are you ready for your next one?
Crackpot Theory of the Week: Scrimgeour – Descendant of Gryffindor
Jamie: Okay this one is from Alex, 15, from Indiana. And, Eric, this is your Crackpot Theory of the Week.
Andrew: Dun dun dun…
Andrew: Oops. I’m, I’m sorry! It’s ruined. It’s ruined!
[Eric hums the tune of Layla]
Jamie: It’s ruined! No, its fine, it’s fine. We’ll do it again.
Eric: [sings to the tune of “Layla”] Got me on my knees, crackpot…
Jamie: Eric, Eric. This is your Crackpot Theory of the Week.
Andrew: [sings] Dodolo dodolo dodolo dodolo doom.
Jamie: Rufus Scrimgeour, the new Minister of Magic, is a descendant of Godric Gryffindor and will play a key role in Book Seven.
Eric: Ah, the lion.
[Andrew begins to hum softly in the background]
Eric: He’s described as being as…
Andrew: We need Millionaire music for this.
Jamie: Don’t, don’t…
Eric: You know, Regis is…
Jamie: You’re just giving him time to think.
Eric: You know Regis is no longer… Regis is no longer doing that show.
Andrew: Stalling, minus five.
Eric: I am not stalling. Okay! His lion face. Isn’t he described as having a face like a lion? I mean, come on.
Jamie: By who, by who, by who? Who said that?
Jamie: Come on, Eric.
Eric: Oooh! Aaah! It’s…
Jamie: First chapter of Half-Blood Prince, come on.
Eric: Half-Blood Prince. Well it was…
Jamie: Come on boy! Come on.
[Eric begins to make pained noises]
Jamie: You’re useless. You’re useless, you’re a disgrace.
Eric: I don’t know. [Starts to scream] I can’t take it!
Jamie: You’ve failed! You’ve failed at life. Kill yourself!
Jamie: Is Harry in the first chapter of Half-Blood Prince, Eric?
Eric: Oh, oh, oh! Yes!
Jamie: You call yourself a fan? You call yourself a fan?
Andrew: That’s despicable.
Eric: Oh, it’s the other minister.
Jamie: Yes. Who is it?
Eric: Oh, well it’s…
Jamie: Tony Blair?
Eric: It’s not Tony Blair, because…
Andrew: He’s quitting. Who cares?
Eric: According to the Lexicon… He’s quitting?
Jamie: He is.
Jamie: Well, he will be soon. Stop stalling, Eric.
Eric: Okay, so the face like a lion. The other minister thinks he has a face like a lion, come on! He’s a descendant of Godric Gryffindor that’s all there is to it! In fact, he might be Godric Gryffindor. In fact, I might even…
Jamie: Repetition! Minus fifteen!
[Andrew and Eric laugh]
Eric: No. In fact is not repetition. In fact, he might even be Aslan from the Narnia series. You never know. Anything is possible. But a guy with a lion of a face…
Jamie: Non-relevance! Minus twenty!
[Andrew and Eric laugh]
Eric: I don’t think it’s a question. He has got a lion for a face, and he goes around, and he governs people and he governs the magical world. And realizes what an asset Harry is.
Jamie: That was good.
Eric: Okay. Were there any other points that he brought up? She brought up? He, she. He, it.
Jamie: [yawns] No, she didn’t bring any up.
Andrew: All right well, if you’ve got a Crackpot Theory Of The Week for Eric that you want him to answer on the show, send it in to mugglecast at staff dot mugglenet dot com. It has to be… He has to be able to prove it in some way, shape, or form. Send in your points so we can read them on the show once he’s done. You know the drill, you know how it rolls. So, that’s that.
Eric: Oh my gosh. Can both of those actually go in? I thought that was really…
Andrew: Yes, Eric.
Eric: I… I… I…
Eric: Thank you. I really liked that.
Andrew: We’re now going to head into an Editorial Segment hosted by Laura and Micah. Eric, this is – and then Eric, you’re getting out of here and you’ll be gone for three weeks? Four weeks?
Eric: Well, I can be on the show if it’s absolutely necessary, if you’re short of people, if you only have you and Ben one night, I can do it.
Eric: It’ll be like 11:00 AM on a Thursday, which we’ll be doing nothing except sleeping. So I can be, but it’s… I don’t need to be. [laughs] I don’t need to be on. But, yeah, I’ll be gone. Well, two weeks actually, the 24th. And then obviously the 24th I’m meeting up with you guys. So, we’ll be together for – with the LIVE podcast and everything else. Hope the rest of the episode goes well tonight.
Jamie: All right, Eric.
Andrew: Have fun in New Zealand.
Eric: Thank you.
Eric: And, uh, bye-bye!
Andrew: And we’ll take it right now to an Editorial segment by Laura and Micah. Take it away, girls. And Micah. No, just girls.
[Jamie and Andrew laugh]
Jamie: Just girl and Micah.
Editorial Segment: Brandon Ford, The Underground Lake
Laura: Hey everyone, the Editorial Segment is back. Yay! [claps] Say “yay,” everyone. Come on. Yay.
Laura: I love the enthusiasm. Okay.
[Brandon and Micah laugh]
Laura: And to celebrate, joining us – joining Micah Tan The Anchor Man (as I like to call him) and I this week is Brandon Ford, author of The Underground Lake. Welcome back, Brandon.
Brandon: Hello. Thank you for having me back.
Laura: Oh, it’s no problem. We had a great time with you the first time, and you were actually the first editorialist we had on this segment, right?
Brandon: Yes, I feel very honored.
Laura: Yes. The Underground Lake has been on hiatus for a while now, but it’s back, great as ever. So Brandon, why don’t you give us a little bit of a synopsis on your latest piece?
Brandon: My last editorial was called “Where in the World is Wormtail?” Basically, after reading Book Six I was very frustrated, because I had predicted after reading Book Five that Wormtail was up to something which is why he was gone the whole book. And in Book Six, he still really didn’t do anything; he was just sort of living with Snape in what I call the “new millennium odd couple,” which was very strange to me. And he didn’t really do anything but serve wine and eavesdrop on people. So, I was trying to still think what could he possibly still be up to, so that was sort of my little introduction back into the world of editorial writing regularly, once again.
Laura: So, now, according to your editorial, who is it that Voldemort doesn’t trust? Snape, Wormtail, or both?
Brandon: Both, but I think right now he is kind of playing both sides against the middle; that essentially their living with each other because one is supposed to be spying on the other one. But I think ultimately the real choice of Voldemort is that Wormtail is living there to spy on Snape, to make sure he really is playing for the right team.
Micah: Yeah, I thought this was interesting because this came up on an episode of MuggleCast. We were talking about this, and most people would assume that Snape is keeping an eye on Wormtail, because that’s in fact what he says in the book, but I think when you think about it, it makes a lot more sense for Wormtail to be spying on Snape.
Brandon: Yeah. I definitely agreed with that. Which is why – it came out of trying to figure out what in the world Wormtail was doing living with Snape. And to me, that just makes the most sense.
Laura: So, we know that Wormtail is obviously a drifter, kind of seeking the stronger side of the war. Do you think Snape is like this too, or do you think that he actually has an alliance? Do you think he’s actually playing the role of spy, or do you think he’s playing both sides to his own advantage?
Brandon: For the longest time I thought he was what I called a triple agent, which is he was just out for himself, he wasn’t really playing both sides. I don’t really want to answer that question because my next editorial is actually the answer to that question.
Brandon: [laughs] So, I am just going to leave you with that. But, I do think he does have something rather secretive up his sleeve.
Micah: But I guess, going off of that, your editorial – you sort of started out taking a look at where Wormtail was, but then you didn’t really answer it. Is that going to come up in the next editorial too?
Brandon: No. When I titled it “Where in the World is Wormtail?” at first it was – I mean, obviously geographically we know where he is; he’s living in Snape’s old house. But, I think more what I meant was, “What has he been up to since Book Four?”, really. I guess one of the reasons that I didn’t really go as much into what I thought he was doing, is because a lot of the wind was knocked out of my sails after reading Book Six because, essentially, JK Rowling answered the question; that he’s been living with Snape. And I wasn’t really satisfied with that, so I really wanted to go more into what – the fact that it has more to do with Snape and less to do with Wormtail, right now. However, I do still hope that there is something going on with him, that there is some secret plan that only he and Voldemort know about. But I’m not going to hold my breath for that one.
Micah: Now, do you think Wormtail is planning to help Harry in any way? Will he help him at all? And if he does…
Brandon: Yeah, I had been thinking about that because, of course, what Dumbledore said about how Wormtail now owes Harry, because Harry didn’t let Lupin and Sirius kill him. And, I thought, like a lot of people did, that it would come down to the end and that he would sacrifice himself for Harry. But then, for a while I started to think about, you know, the obvious Lord of the Rings parodies, where Gandalf says Gollum is going to rule the fates of many and all that stuff, but then in the end it’s not a good way that he rules the fates of many. It’s actually quite a horrible way that he rules the fates of many. So, I started to think maybe it’s possible that Wormtail, in his greed, or in his evil, would do something, and that would lead to a chain of events where it would end up helping Harry, even though he isn’t purposely helping Harry, per se. But in the end I feel like, knowing JK Rowling, he’ll probably do something in the end that will help Harry.
Laura: Earlier you were talking a little bit about how Book Six took some of the wind out of your sails. Did Jo’s reading in New York City interfere with any of your theories?
Brandon: Actually, no. When I was asked to come back, I went on MuggleNet and looked at the transcripts and the reports of what she said in New York City, and really she didn’t. In fact, she kind of gave a little more fire to a theory that I had before, that I thought she’d debunked, that now I kind of have again which is about Petunia and how, in Book Seven, whatever her big secret is, is going to be revealed. I had – and I think we discussed this the last time I was on – that I had the theory that she was a closet broomstick.
[Micah and Laura laugh]
Brandon: And that she might have magical powers, or something, and JK Rowling in one of her interviews since then said that she’s not a Squib, and she doesn’t have powers and things. But then, in the New York chat, she mentions that there is some huge secret that she has that’s going to be revealed, and I think one point that I did mention in that article about how she maybe kept the original letter that Dumbledore gave her, or that she has something of Harry’s parents’ or in the end, ultimately, she really does have a soul and she’s just not some evil word that I probably shouldn’t say. And, yeah, I’m just… I think that it really is going to come down to her being revealed as not such a horrible person after all, hopefully.
Micah: So, you were very satisfied when she clearly stated that Dumbledore was dead.
Brandon: Yes, extremely.
Brandon: That was sweet vindication. That was sweet vindication.
Laura: I know exactly how you feel. [laughs]
Brandon: I have gotten so many emails from people, saying “Dumbledore’s not dead, just like Sirius isn’t dead.”
Brandon: I’ve even gotten a few, “Cedric isn’t really dead,” which is really stupid.
Brandon: But, you know, I’m just glad that she said, categorically, “Dumbledore is dead. Deal with it, people.” And it does make me a little happy inside.
Micah: Now, what about the whole possibility of redemption? Because that was something else somebody asked. Possibly for Draco, possibly for Snape.
Brandon: As far as redemption for those two characters, once again, actually, the redemption of Snape goes into my next editorial, and the possible redemption for Draco goes into the one that I’m writing after that.
Brandon: But I can say that my feeling about, as far as Snape being redeemed is – my problem is, at the end of the day, regardless of what team he’s playing for, he is the one who murdered Dumbledore. And there’s sort of no turning back from that. He can’t exactly walk up to the Order and say, “Oh, it was all arranged, it was all a plan,” because if he goes to the Order they’re just going to kill him. So, I don’t know. Whatever he does, he can only be redeemed really in the eyes of Harry. In the eyes of the world, he will always be the man who killed Dumbledore and no amount of explaining and no amount of intrigue is going to change that fact. So, his redemption is going to be on a different level than, “Oh, he’s really good after all. Let’s all hug and shake hands and call it a day.”
As for Draco, Harry has, more or less, not necessarily forgiven Draco, but acknowledged the fact that he doesn’t think that Draco ever would have killed Dumbledore, so he actually pities him. And I’m on that train too. Whether Draco can come back to the side of good, I don’t know. He might be motivated for the love of his parents, and trying to protect them, to ultimately make the right decision. But, something else that I’ve always said is that Draco may not have killed Dumbledore, he may not have pulled the trigger, but he bought the gun, loaded it and cocked it, so there is a level of guilt in there as well. The short answer is: I don’t know.
Micah: Right. And I think when that question was asked, she tended to favor Draco a little bit more when she was talking about redemption. At least, that’s the impression I got from her answer.
Laura: Yeah, that’s what I thought. Absolutely.
Brandon: Yeah. I do think that if any of the two of them was going to be redeemed, my money’s on Draco over Snape.
Brandon: But time will tell.
Micah: Now, the preview for your next article is called “What If We’re Wrong?” And my question is, what if we’re wrong about what?
Brandon: What if we’re wrong about Snape actually being a good guy?
Laura: Oh, no. [laughs]
Brandon: I’m going to sort of give you what I pretty much put in the introduction to it. As soon as I read the book the first time, I was immediately on the, “Oh, I trust him even more now that he killed Dumbledore, because he did it because he had to,” and all this stuff. But after – when I was doing research for “Where in the World is Wormtail?” I read “Spinner’s End,” and something really did not sit well with me when Snape was giving his answers to all of the questions that Bellatrix kept asking him. And it got me thinking: what if everybody’s wrong? What if he really isn’t good? What if everything he told Bellatrix was the truth? That he did all that stuff because he’s on Voldemort’s side. And it’s just sort of… And the subtitle is “A Trip to the Bizarre World.” It’s just sort of, what if we look at everything that’s happened in the books from the point of view that he was telling the truth, and he really is a bad guy. What does that ultimately mean for Harry, and what does that mean for us as readers who have believed him for the past six books, and it turns out he really was evil the whole time?
Micah: I think that JK Rowling has just trained us so well to second guess everything, so that when we saw Dumbledore actually…
Brandon: I know.
Laura: She really has.
Micah: …murdered, you automatically thought, “Oh, there has to be something else to this,” and I’m sure there is, but we may be looking a little bit too far into it. So, it’ll be interesting to read that.
Laura: Some of us thought he was alive, didn’t we, Micah?
Brandon: [laughs] Yes.
Micah: Yeah, I don’t know who.
[Laura and Brandon laugh]
Micah: Some site, actually.
Laura: [still laughing] Well, that all sounds insanely interesting, and I think that everybody’s pretty much really looking forward to reading that one, but we’re running out of time, so we need to get into our lightning round, which…
Brandon: All right.
Laura: …I don’t think you got to do that, because we premiered that after your debut on this segment.
Laura: So, first question, did Snape love Lily?
Brandon: I believe so, yes.
Micah: Okay, I’ll take the next one.
Micah: At Radio City Music Hall, did Jo slip up and reveal that the trio will survive the war, or are people reading too much into it?
Brandon: Well, I believe that Ron and Hermione will be surviving. I’ve always been in the “I think Harry’s going to die” group, but I don’t think she slipped up and revealed that. I did she did slip up and reveal that Ron and Hermione were probably going to survive, because I think they are.
Laura: Who else was at Godric’s Hollow the night the Potters were killed?
Brandon: I always maintain that I think Peter Pettigrew was there with Voldemort in the house, so I’m probably going to stick with that.
Micah: That’s your whole “Last Day Theory,” isn’t it?
Brandon: Yes, it is. No, Fudge was not there.
Brandon: I can see that that actually did not happen, now that I’ve read Book Six…
Brandon: …but, yeah, I think he was there.
Micah: And in that Richard and Judy interview, she said that she spared one recently when she was writing Book Seven. Who do you think that was?
Brandon: [laughs] Once again, you’re getting into an editorial that I’ve just started writing, too. Who do I think is spared, is Lupin.
Laura: Really? Why is that?
Brandon: Well, I always had down that I thought all of the Marauders had to die, just because I think that that piece of Harry Potter history had to be closed. Because I believe Wormtail is going to die, and I believe that Lupin has to die so that all four of them can and that, basically, the whole set has to die. But now, after Book Six and Lupin’s hopeful relationship with Tonks, and other things, I kind of think he might – I think he might be the one who’s spared.
Laura: And who do you think are the two people that are going to die in the place of the character who got the reprieve?
Brandon: I’ve been thinking about that one a lot lately, and I’m not entirely sure about one. I think, unfortunately, Hagrid probably has to go.
Laura: [in distress] Oooh.
Brandon: I don’t want him to go, but I think he’s got to go. Just because that would be really sad, and that would kill everybody. But I don’t know about the other one. I’ve been really trying to think about who the other person could be.
Micah: See, when I heard…
Brandon: I’m hoping it’s not Neville, but it could be.
Micah: When I heard two, I immediately thought Fred and George.
Brandon: I don’t think so.
Laura: [gasps] Micah! No! Don’t say that!
Brandon: I think – I’m going to say all the Weasleys are safe. I really feel like all the Weasleys are safe.
Laura: That’s interesting.
Laura: A lot of people think that Percy’s going to buy the farm.
Brandon: I don’t think Percy will… [laughs] Honestly, I don’t think Percy is important enough to die. I don’t really think anybody would care if Percy died, personally.
[Micah and Laura laugh]
Brandon: But… Plus, I think Percy still has to mend his fences with his family and, you know, I’m an optimist. I think all the Weasleys will remain unscathed, maybe a little grievously injured, but I think they’ll all live.
Laura: An optimist who thinks Harry is going to die.
Brandon: I think he’s got to. I think he has to.
Laura: All right, well, we’re running a little short on time here, so Brandon, thank you for joining us again. It is…
Brandon: No problem. Anytime.
Laura: …always a pleasure to have you.
Brandon: Thank you.
Laura: Now, listeners, don’t forget. If you or someone you know has an excellent editorial on MuggleNet, be sure to let us know. And for one final note, we’re working on expanding this segment by featuring other areas of the site and the lovely people who run them, so we will of course, be looking for listener feedback on that, because we love you guys so much, so please write in when you hear anything on that. And once again, Brandon Ford, “The Underground Lake.” Read it, or else.
[Brandon and Micah laugh]
Brandon: Thank you. Please do.
Laura: [laughs] All right. Bye, everyone.
Brandon: Bye. Thank you.
What’s Buggin’ Micah: Jo, Update Your Site!
Andrew: Okay, we’re back and now joined by Micah. He hopped off the editorial discussion and decided to join us.
Ben: I’m home now.
Andrew: Oh. [laughs]
Micah: Where were you before?
Ben: I was at school.
Jamie: Yeah, but Ben…
Andrew: In school.
Jamie: Ben, don’t you get a free house with that library as well? [laughs]
Ben: Yeah. [laughs]
Andrew: Well, that’s the thing. The editorial segment – or, wait. When you got off like, twenty minutes ago. So, what’d you do, fly home?
Jamie: [laughs] Yeah.
Ben: I drove.
Andrew: Okay, anyway. [laughs] We have a new segment this week, because we’re all about new segments. Like, like pickle. Pickle. Pickle.
Jamie: We like to keep up to date, don’t we?
Andrew: Yeah. So it’s a new segment, and it’s called, “What’s Buggin’ Micah?” [laughs]
Micah: [laughs] Did you – did you practice that?
Andrew: Boy, this is a rough start. Yes, actually.
Jamie: Can I do it?
Andrew: Yeah, go ahead.
Jamie: While all of you who hear Micah doing the news think that he’s a sort of laid back, calm individual who doesn’t ever get angry or doesn’t ever shout or get annoyed, he isn’t really. And if you listen to us recording, you’d hear the full force of Micah exploding.
Andrew: [sounds scared] Oooh. Gives me chills just thinking about it.
Jamie: It fills us with fear – yeah, it does. Just thinking about it, I’m going queasy and sort of, you know, jumping up and down. But, anyway, we thought that we would bring this sort of anger and use is productively, so we thought we’d try and show everyone exactly how Micah feels in this new segment.
Andrew: All right.
Jamie: So, Micah, explode.
[Andrew and Micah laugh]
Micah: All right. Well, being that this is the first segment, I’m going to make it short and sweet, but you’ll be able to figure out what it’s about soon enough. So, with that said… Jo, you need to update your site.
Micah: “Why?” you ask? Because it’s been 120 days, which is roughly one-third of the calendar year since you last posted something.
Micah: Wizard of the Month, birthday announcements – they don’t count.
Micah: Yes, I realize you did come visit us in New York City, and it was great seeing you. We know you’re writing Book Seven, but we’re not asking for a lot. At least update the diary on the main page. I believe you’re supposed to write in a diary more than once every five months. I mean, Emerson has posted more than you lately, and that’s saying something.
[Andrew, Ben, and Jamie laugh]
Ben: Oh, my gosh.
Micah: Just to put it in perspective, here are some things that were happening on May 10th; the last time you updated:
MuggleCast was only 38 episodes old.
Jamie: That’s a long time away.
Micah: We were more than two months away from Las Vegas and New York City.
[Andrew pretends to cry]
Micah: Katie Couric was still the host of the Today Show.
Micah: Those students who are now freshman in college were still taking classes as seniors in high school.
Micah: Pluto was still a planet.
Micah: …and, and DumbledoreIsNotDead.com was actually a meaningful website. So please, Jo, update your site!
Jamie: That’s what’s bugging Micah. Although, Jo…
Ben: Well, I could totally see Jo posting on her website, “Because Micah Tannenbaum said so.”
Ben: How awesome would that be?
Jamie: Although, Ben, Ben, I’d just like to point out that Jo, if you’re listening, we are in no way affiliated with Micah Tannenbaum at all.
Andrew: Or any of his news segments.
Jamie: Yeah, yeah. Or any of his feelings or angers at all. Personally, I think May is a great time to update and I think you should…
[Ben and Micah laugh]
Jamie: …live your life and don’t worry about a website. Seriously.
Jamie: Micah, you da, god.
Andrew: Micah, that was very good.
Jamie: That was good.
Andrew: And we got – we like seeing this side of you because everyone sees the serious Micah Tannenbaum in the MuggleCast news center, but there’s never the real Micah. [laughs] Anyway, good work, Micah. [laughs] I… I… I concur, though. It has, it has been a while. It’s a shame, that’s all.
Micah: What’s been a while?
Andrew: An update to her site.
Jamie: Yeah, it’s been – let’s phrase it properly. It would be rather pleasant to receive an update.
Jamie: But we in no way expect it.
Andrew: I do.
Jamie: Okay, I do too.
Jamie: Jo, update your website. Come on, it’s been ages.
Andrew: [laughs] Yeah.
Andrew: Now time for some more fun with Dumbledore/Norris facts! Yay!
Jamie: Should we have a bad quote of the week, as well? [laughs] Like, you know, the worst one that’s been sent in?
Jamie: Okay, I just need to find it. This is a nice one from Dan, 12. “Dumbledore’s beard makes unicorn hair look dull.” [laughs]
Jamie: “When Dumbledore’s eyes twinkle brightly behind his spectacles, you had better be glad that he’s wearing his glasses, otherwise the brightness of that twinkle would burn a hole right through you.” [laughs]
Jamie: I love these. I love… No, actually, even though Ben’s boring and says that they are – they are bad, the response that I’ve got about these has been fantastic so please keep sending them in.
Micah: You know, when I first saw that in the Writley – and I’m being serious – I thought that you were going to start talking about some relationship between Dumbledore and…
Ben: Mrs. Norris. [laughs]
Micah: …Mrs. Norris.
Jamie: “Azkaban has recently replaced the Dementors with cardboard cut-outs of Dumbledore.”
Jamie: “A more effective way of guarding the prison.” [laughs] This is a good one, “In the seventh year of Hogwarts, Dumbledore was voted best dressed and most likely to be forgiven for performing an Unforgivable Curse.”
Jamie: Nice. Non-magic one of the week – “Dumbledore doesn’t need an iPod or any other device for playing music, he just thinks of the song he feels like listening to and it immediately starts playing in his head.” [laughs]
Andrew: [laughs] Speaking of beautiful and intelligent…
Andrew: …and popular…
Jamie: Can I get to say this at some point?
Andrew: Yeah, Laura just entered. I wanted to introduce her properly.
Jamie: Hey, Laura.
Jamie: Laura, did you know that Dumbledore is not really dead, but living with Tupac [pronounced “Two-pack”] and Elvis?
[Andrew and Ben laugh]
Andrew: Tupac. What’s his name?
Jamie: Yeah. “Two-pack.” That’s it.
Micah: Well, I’ve never heard it as “Two-pack?”
Jamie: “When Dumbledore holds a Remembrall, it simply shatters because Dumbledore never forgets.”
Jamie: That’s from Jennifer Rader, 18, from Texas. Thank you. Please keep sending them in. They’re fantastic. Send them to jamie at staff dot mugglenet dot com and, yeah. And we especially like original Dumbledore quotes that have some kind of magic thing related to them so to all the people who have gone to ChuckNorrisFacts.com, [laughs] copy them down and change the name to Dumbledore…which I admit I did do first of all. Try and get some original ones. They’re all fantastic. Thank you.
Gimme A Butterbeer: Harry Potter – The Satanic Art?
Andrew: Now, it is time for the return of Gimme A Butterbeer…
Jamie: Dun dun dun.
Andrew: …with Ben Schoen.
Ben: It’s what everyone’s been waiting for, I’m pretty sure.
Jamie: Do you know what…
Andrew: Yeah, we’ve been waiting like, how…when…what was the last one? When was the last one?
Jamie: Four years. We should do a Gimme A Butterbeer.
Jamie: Andrew, Andrew.
Andrew: Yeah, we should do our own.
Jamie: Andrew. No, no.
Ben: It was the last time Jo updated her site.
Andrew: Ohhh. [laughs]
Jamie: We should do a…
Jamie: We should do a Give Me a Butterbeer about Ben not doing Give Me a Butterbeer.
Ben: Yeah, that’s a good one.
Andrew: Okay, I’ll be right back but Ben, you can do that.
Ben: This week, I’d like to take a look at Harry Potter: The satanic art. “Behind Harry Potter lies the signature of the king of darkness, the devil,” Pope Benedict XIV senior exorcist told Vatican Radio. According to the Daily Mail newspaper in London, he added that “the book attempts to make false distinction between black and white magic when, in fact, the distinction does not exist because magic is always a turn to the devil.” I know we’ve discussed this before, but for the last time, Harry Potter is not turning our youth into little witches and wizards. It’s a fictional story about a boy who happens to be a wizard and is attempting to save the world. It’s the equivalent of saying Superman must be demon-possessed because real people can’t fly.
What I’m getting sick and tired of is continually hearing the critics say the same thing over and over. To me it seems they can’t stand how insanely popular the book is, so they’re going to be so – so they’re going to be cynical and find a way to criticize. Unfortunately, they keep re-hashing the same message: Harry Potter is the devil. I think this is a very important conversation to have. When prominent religious figures continually condemn the books, it makes the average Christian Harry Potter fan feel guilty for reading the series because of its alleged connections with the occult. Please, if you’re going to criticize the books, at least make a legitimate attempt to understand what they are about.
Jamie: Or read them first.
Ben: I sincerely doubt the Pope’s exorcist has actually read the series, so it’s unfair for him to pass judgment. Perhaps if he actually cracked one of the books, he’d see it’s underlined moral teachings and realize that it’s not just a bunch of teenage witches and wizards dancing in a circle chanting voodoo. Hopefully, this is the last time I have to bring this topic up. I’m Ben Schoen and I say, Gimme A Butterbeer.
Laura: Well, I doubt it’s going to be…
Jamie: Pretty good, Benjamin, well done.
Laura: It will probably not be the last time you have to bring that topic up, but you do bring up several good points.
Jamie: The Pope’s going to turn around and say, “Well, if Ben Schoen doesn’t want us to say anything…”
[Ben and Laura laugh]
Jamie: “…we won’t say it. It’s fine.”
Ben: So, what do you guys think?
Jamie: I think you’re right, but do you know what? I don’t really care though. It’s like if the Pope’s senior exorcist wants to say it’s about devils and stuff, then that’s fine. He can think we’re going to hell for reading it.
[Laura and Ben laugh]
Jamie: I’m going to read it still and I’m sure that every other fan is still going to read it. But, I do agree that it can make people feel guilty for reading something they shouldn’t feel guilty about. Do you agree with that sentiment Laura? Or…
Laura: I do, I do agree with that sentiment.
Jamie: Oh, excellent.
Laura: It really irks me how people seem to think that they can go about judging the books without even reading them.
Laura: It’s like that Laura Mallory, who doesn’t live to far from me, who claims – she seems to think that she doesn’t need to actually read the books before condemning them because she has four children and she doesn’t have enough time. Yet, she has so much time sitting around appealing to the state, which she is now. I think she’s getting another hearing here soon, so I’m probably going to go up there and argue.
Jamie: Good. Do it, do it.
Laura: I think it’s absolutely ridiculous and I think, Ben, you hit the nail on the head.
Micah: Try and refrain yourself from hitting her.
Ben: But seriously, what right does she have to go and protest something? Separation of church and state definitely covers this.
Ben: You can’t say, “Because God said so, these books have to be banned from libraries.”
Jamie: No, you can’t say it, can you?
Ben: The interpretation of what God is…
Jamie: There’s just no ground there.
Ben: Based upon the person and the constitution protects your right to…
Ben: Freedom of religion, so it’s ridiculous for this woman to even say that.
Laura: Well, I think it’s important to remember, and I’m not meaning this to be insulting – in the least way at all, but freedom of religion is also freedom from it, and…
Jamie: It is.
Laura: …I think trying to base a public school system’s right to have what they want in the library on one person’s religious beliefs is absolutely ridiculous.
Micah: And I think, all you have to do is look at what took place at the beginning of August in New York City, in terms of it’s impact on literature with 6,000 people coming out each night to see, not just Jo, but two other authors and I think that that’s a statement to be made. The whole idea of it being a satanic cult – I really don’t like the comparisons that were made, in particular the two that Emerson mentioned in his post to these – 5to what was it? To Hitler and Stalin?
Jamie: Yeah. It’s just ridiculous.
Laura: Well, I…
Jamie: It’s just ridiculous.
Laura: We’re all perfect examples of what good Harry Potter can do. Think about how different our lives would be if it weren’t Harry.
Jamie: Oh yeah.
Laura: We wouldn’t be going on all these great trips, we wouldn’t be doing this show, we wouldn’t even know each other.
Jamie: I know. How ridiculous do you think it is? jamie at staff dot mugglenet dot com. Tell me how ridiculous…
[Ben, Laura, and Micah laugh]
Jamie: Exactly how ridiculous do you think it is.
Ben: The bottom line is that it’s a book. It’s not preaching to you, it’s not trying to convert…
Ben: …you to a belief system. It’s just a story. That’s all it is. There are many stories out there that involve witchcraft, but…
Ben: …it doesn’t mean they are all trying to convert to Wiccans.
Ben: Wicca, whatever you want to call it.
Laura: And kids are reading now. They’re not letting their brains rot in front of the television as much anymore. That is one thing to be so thankful for. Anything that gets kids reading.
Ben: I don’t think anything that’s encouraging child literacy is going to be spawning from the devil.
[Andrew, Ben, and Laura laugh]
Laura: You go to hell if you read books, but if you play video games, you’re all right.
Laura: It just makes no sense.
Ben: Well, once again, if you have an idea for this segment, please email ben at staff dot mugglenet dot com. Or go to the MuggleCast.com website and select Ben from the contact page. Thanks! Also, give me feedback on this. Tell me what you think.
Andrew’s HUH?! E-mail of the Week
Andrew: It’s time for Andrew’s… [makes “me, me, me, me, me, me, me” throat clearing sound] It’s time for Andrew’s Huh?!, Huh?!, Huh?!…
Andrew: …E-mail of the Week.
Jamie: That was easy.
Andrew: It usually takes a couple of tries to get my voice in a groove.
Jamie: Yeah, you’ve got to tune it up.
Andrew: Actually, this isn’t an e-mail. This is HUH?! MuggleNet comment board of the week entry, thing.
Andrew: So, we posted about MuggleCast 54, which I incorrectly called 55 last week.
Laura: Good job!
Andrew: My bad!
Andrew: And, you know, we like reading the comments. We like seeing the feedback, and there’s this one comment that kind of, you know, we get these every once in a while, and it really grinds my gear…
Andrew: Gears. It reads, “I’d just like to mention that I used to watch this.”
Andrew: Okay, first of all, you don’t watch it, you listen to it.
Eric: First mistake! [laughs]
Andrew: Second sentence: “It was good,” no comma, “though the descussions…”
Andrew: Spelled D – E – S… Yeah, it’s like, “descussions.”
[continues reading] “…did start to go downhill.”
All right. Your opinion.
Andrew: “What actually made me quit watching it,” – once again, you’re not watching, you’re listening – “was the large amount of spyware that latched itself onto my computer when I was downloading the episodes.”
Ben: Yep. You heard it here. We… [laughs]
Andrew: “The computer guy said it was very hard to get rid of – get rid of, and some of them still remain because they will not detach. We may have to get a new computer. Thanks, MuggleCast.”
First of all, you’re welcome.
Andrew: Second of all, we don’t attach any spyware…
Ben: Spyware? We don’t even know how to do that. How would you do that?
Jamie: Andrew, Andrew don’t lie.
Ben: How can you attach spyware to an mp3 file?
Jamie: No, no…
Ben: How can you do that?
Jamie: No, Ben, don’t lie. I think we should come clear.
Ben: [impersonating Kevin] We have Kevin do it each week?
Jamie: We have a special deal worked out with…
Jamie: No, no. We have a special deal worked out with Dell, whereas we screw up everyone’s computer, then they buy a new one from Dell…
Jamie: Then we get a 20% annual profit.
Andrew: Yeah! [laughs]
Andrew: Enter code MuggleCast…
Jamie: Pretty, pretty awesome, really.
Micah: Who sent this to you? What’s their name?
Andrew: It was on the comment board.
Andrew: But I just want to point out that, of course, we don’t attach anything to the audio files. That’s just silly, and we would never try to. We don’t even know how. And they’re just audio files. It’s like downloading music. That’s all.
Jamie’s British Joke of the Day
Andrew: British Joke of the Day!
Jamie: I’ve got one.
Andrew: That’s a joke in itself.
Jamie: Didn’t know that… Eh! All right. There’s this guy, and he goes skydiving for the first time ever, okay? After he jumps out of the plane, he counts to ten, as you do, pulls the cord, and absolutely nothing happens. So, he’s getting a little bit worried by now, and he pulls the cord for the auxiliary parachute, but, unfortunately, again, the parachute doesn’t appear at all [laughs]. So, he’s falling down, you know, reaching terminal velocity, and he’s plummeting toward the earth, and he sees this woman coming up completely the other way, and he shouts to her, “Hey! Do you know anything about parachutes?” And she quickly replies, “No. Do you know anything about gas stoves?”
Ben: Oh, that bombed.
Jamie: Oh, god, that was funny.
Ben’s Not So British Joke of the Day
Jamie: Okay, Ben, you tell yours.
Ben: My joke?
Jamie: Would you like me to tell it?
Ben: I’ll tell it. So, guys. Why did the ghost of the chicken cross the road?
Ben: To get to the other [in scary voice] siiiiiiiiiide!
Jamie: That is pretty good, that one, Ben.
Ben: I love that joke!
Jamie: That is pretty good. I’m very impressed.
Ben: I love that joke.
Jamie: I’m laughing so much.
Ben: [laughs] You did a little bit ago when I told it to you.
[Andrew, Jamie, and Laura laugh]
Jamie: Yeah, yeah, I did the first time he said it, but we still only laughed minorly at first.
Chicken Soup: Back-To-School Edition
Andrew: Now, to wrap up the show this week, Chicken Soup: [excitedly] Back-To-School Edition! [sings] Da da da da da da… What’s the Saved by the Bell music?
Ben: [sings] I’m saved by the bell! Itttttttt’s all right, ’cause I’m saved by the bell! [laughs]
Andrew: Phillip Defibaugh [stumbles several times through last name]
Andrew: Defibwaah? Waaah! 15, from Orange County, California, writes about his back-to-school MuggleCast experience:
“I just wanted to say I love listening to the show and that you actually helped me in school. Let me explain. I am really out of shape.”
“And at my school in my PE class we have to run a mile every week. I never scored very well. One day, my PE teacher said we could listen to our iPods while we ran the mile.”
“I had just started to run when I noticed I had clicked on MuggleCast. For once, I was actually laughing while I ran the mile.”
Ben: I’m sure that helps him run faster.
Andrew: Yeah, I was just going to say! That’s a little flawed! But anyway…
“A little while later, my PE teacher had stopped me. I had run two extra laps without noticing it! My teacher decided to give me extra credit, bringing my C to a B in the class. Thank you MuggleCast!”
Jamie: [laughs] Funny.
Andrew: How do you get a C in gym?
Ben: Because you can’t run a mile.
Laura: Hey, I know people who have done it. [laughs] We have our…
Andrew: “PS: Jamie…”
Andrew: Oh, go ahead Laura. Sorry.
Laura: Oh, no, I was just going to say that our final in gym was we had to run for 30 minutes, and if we didn’t do it…
Laura: [laughs] We got a C in the class, yeah.
Ben: Hey, do you realize that in thirty minutes, you can run for like four miles?
Ben: Yeah. That’s ridiculous!
Andrew: That’s a lot.
Ben: That’s… [laughs]
Andrew: And at the bottom, it says:
“PS: Jamie, you’re my favorite MuggleCaster.”
Ben: Well, this person is definitely off their rocker, then!
[Micah, Jamie, and Laura laugh]
Jamie: Do you know what we should do? The most sort of – I can’t remember the word. What’s the word that sort of psyches you up and makes you do something?
Andrew: Pump iron?
Ben: Pump you?
Jamie: Sort of inspiring song is always, Eye of the Tiger, by Survivor.
Andrew: [sings beginning of Eye of the Tiger] Buh! Buh buh buh! Buh buh buh!
Jamie: We should play that every single week, just to kind of, like, inspire people who could be doing things right now when they are listening to the show.
Jamie: It will help gym students everywhere.
More Chicken Soup: Back-To-School Edition
Andrew: Well, here’s another. I like these kind of re – not rebuttals, Chicken Soups. This one comes from Briana, 16, of Virginia Beach, Virginia. And she says:
“Hey, MuggleCasters! Tomorrow, I start my senior year of high school. I’ve been dreading it all summer, but MuggleCast helped me realize there was nothing to worry about tonight in the form of a supermarket phenomenon. There I was, in the refrigerated section of the supermarket in my MuggleCast shirt…”
Of course! Everyone wears their MuggleCast t-shirts out everywhere. [laughs]
Andrew: “…holding a jar of pickles for my lunch.”
Okay. I’m not sure why she has pickles for lunch, but…
“I laughed silently, reminded of the most recent episode (which was hilarious, by the way). Then, it happened.”
Ben, cue it up, please!
Ben: [sings beginning of Eye of the Tiger] Buh! Buh buh buh! Buh buh buh!
Jamie: Come on, Ben!
Ben: [singing City of Blinding Lights] Ooooooooo…
Andrew: [singing City of Blinding Lights] Ooooooooo…
Andrew: Can’t do it now. But…
[Ben sings throughout]
Andrew: “‘City of Blinding Lights’ came on the speakers of the supermarket. I swear, that moment was the culmination of my favorite MuggleCast allusions. I had a pickle jar in my hand…”
[Jamie and Laura laugh]
Andrew: ” …U2 in my ears, and the podcasters on my… well, chest. [laughs] I started to laugh even louder. Now that I think of it, I must have looked so ridiculous as I attempted to sing the “Ooohs” while laughing hysterically.”
“With the help of MuggleCast, U2, and pickles, I was able to have one last moment of blissful stupidity before I head off to school tomorrow morning. So, thank you, guys, for being for being funny and utterly random every week. It made my summer.”
Pickles, pickles, pickles, pickles…
Jamie: And U2. And U2.
Andrew: …pickles, pickles…
Ben: Stop with the pickles!
Andrew: …pickles, pickles, pickles, pickles, pickles, pickles, pickles, pickles…
Ben: Hey, I have a little challenge.
Micah: Oh, the transcribers are going to love that.
[Transcriber’s note: Word!]
Jamie: Yeah. [laughs]
Ben: I absolutely love that. Lately…
Ben’s Random Challenge
Ben: I want to hold a challenge for the listeners.
Ben: Lately, I’ve …
Jamie: Ben, I do the random challenges!
Ben: No, no; we both do. No, hold on, hold on. Lately…
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Ben: Lately, I’ve been on this little Elton John kick.
Jamie: I’m fed up with him copying me!
Ben: And Dumbledore is now dead; JK Rowling confirmed it. And so, I would like for you to write a parody to Elton John’s Candle in the Wind, for Albus Dumbledore.
Laura: Oh, geez. [laughs]
Andrew: I think that’s dumb.
Ben: No, please do it.
Ben: Winner gets a t-shirt. [laughs]
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Andrew: Okay, I just want to close the show off by reminding everyone that we now have a low bandwidth version of the show – we’ve had that for a few weeks – but we also have a feed now, so you can subscribe to it within iTunes. Just go to MuggleCast.com and there’s an iTunes link. This version of the show is much easier for those on dialup to download the show. It sounds like this… [says in a mock static voice]
Andrew: Crumby quality, but not really crumby, but not – it’s still…
Andrew: What am I saying [laughs] It’s… Yeah. The quality’s decreased, but you can still hear just fine. So, go to MuggleCast.com.
PO Box Update
Andrew: So, that wraps up MuggleCast Episode 55. If you would like to contact us, you can send PO box parcel mail to…
PO Box 223
Moundridge, Kansas 67017.
Oh, by the way…
Jamie: Don’t forget to send your stuff 15 years in advance.
Ben: A minor PO box update. A minor PO Box update. This past week I received four boxes of Lucky Charms for Jamie…
Ben: Four boxes of Lucky Charms.
Jamie: Thank you, thank you.
Ben: Two of them come from Sam and Ashley. I have no idea where they’re from, but here’s what they say:
“Jamie you are awesome, and my favorite MuggleCaster.”
Enough of that [censored]
Jamie: Hey, Andrew, put that in, but just bleep it out. That was funny.
Ben: The other set of goodies come from Madeline – it says on the front – Madeline Welsh…
Jamie: Oh, that’s a nice name.
Ben: Madeline Welsh from Orlando, Florida. Hey, Madeline, we might be there around New Year’s, so we’ll swing by.
Andrew [Show Close with music in background]: You can also, call in a voice mail question or comment to 1-218-20-MAGIC. In the United Kingdom, 020-8144-0677, and in Australia 02-8003-5668. You can also Skype the user name MuggleCast to leave a voice mail, question, comment, whatever you want. Just Skype the user name MuggleCast. Did I already say that? Leave your message user… Keep your message under thirty seconds and no background noise. We’ve also got a Feedback Forum on MuggleCast.com. Don’t forget the Frappr map. Add your pictures; I know – I’m confident you’re all a good-looking bunch. Vote for us on Podcast Alley and all that good stuff. Once again I’m Andrew Sims.
Ben: I’m Elton John.
Jamie: I’m Cascada.
Micah: I’m Billy Joel.
Laura: And I’m Laura Thompson.
Andrew: We’ll see everyone next week for Episode 56.
[A school bell rings]
Ben: Uh oh! There goes the bell. There goes the bell, we’re going to the hall.
Andrew: What’s this mean? What?
Andrew: Where are we going?
Ben: The bell just rang.
Andrew: No, I want to sit here!
Ben: We’re going to the hallway.
Ben: No, we’re going to the hall.
Andrew: Oh, okay.
Ben: We’re going to the hall. I may have to leave after this, guys. I don’t know. Moundridge High School.
Andrew: Oh, come on.
Jamie: Hey Andrew?
Ben: Yeah, I’m recording a podcast right now.
[Students chatter in the background]
Eric: Moundridge, Kansas.
Jamie: Andrew, keep that stuff in the show about us arguing about the thing that wasn’t funny. The arguing was funnier than the actual thing.
Andrew: I was going to anyway.
Jamie: Oh, okay.
Andrew: So, we’re going through Moundridge High School hall.
Ben: Hey, Ryan Flood. Ryan Flood. You’re on MuggleCast. Say, “Hi.”
Student: Harry Potter’s awesome!
Ben: You’re on MuggleCast, Say, “Hi.”
Student: Hey [censored]!
Andrew: All right.
Student: Snape [censored] Draco.
Andrew: Whoa! [laughs] Okay!
Student: Snape [censored] Dumbledore.
Student: Yo! MuggleCast live!
Ben: [laughs] Yeah. Say, “Hi,” Chad.
Student: You’re not [censored].
Ben: Yeah I am! Right now. Swear to god.
Student: [jokingly] Where’s Emerson?! Emerson! I want to [censored] Emerson! Oh, Emerson!
Student: Emerson I love you, Emerson!
Jamie: I think he just punched him in the face.
Student: What’s that other guy’s name?
Andrew: Oh okay. [laughs]
Eric: Oh my god! Some of this stuff is not getting in.
Student: Are they talking to you?
Ben: Yeah, right now.
Student: What are they saying?
Student: See, Emerson, I love you!
Eric: Moundridge High School: Uncensored.
Student: Ben Schoen, let me see that laptop.
Ben: No! Get away!
Student: I just want to look at it.
Ben: Look with your eyes.
Student: I’m not even going to touch it.
Ben: This is ridiculous.
Student: Hey, come here Ben.
Jamie: Get some girls on, Ben. They wouldn’t swear.
Student: Let me hear what they’re saying right now.
Jamie: Get some girls on. They won’t swear.
Student: Oh, this guy’s British.
Ben: Yeah, he’s British.
Eric: Ben doesn’t get any girls.
Student: Ben gets a lot of girls, man.
Andrew: Gets what?
Student: He gets a lot of girls, man. It’s insane.
Andrew: I don’t believe that.
Jamie: I don’t know.
Student: Oh, no, no. The guy is loaded with chicks.
Eric: Girls named Henry, right?
Student: Henry, yeah.
[Ben and Student laugh]
Eric: [laughs] And Patrick, Patrick.
Andrew: Hmmm, well.
Ben: This is not good. I’m losing signal.
Andrew: This is quite a segment, yeah. [laughs]
Jamie: This is best segment I’ve ever heard. Damn exciting.
Ben: Hey, Waynes. Wayne you’re on MuggleCast. Wayne, you’re on MuggleCast. Say, “Hi.”
Ben: Say, “Harry Potter rules.”
Wayne: Harry Potter is [censored].
Andrew: Everyone automatically knows what MuggleCast is at the school. [laughs]
Eric: It’s just the sad truth, Andrew.
Jamie: That’s because Andrew boasts about it every single… Sorry, that’s because Ben boasts about it every single day. He’s like, “So, Ben, are you coming out tonight?” “No, I’m recording MuggleCast and doing my work on the biggest Harry Potter site in the world.”
Eric: Yeah, the average person is under the impression that he spends five hours every day recording MuggleCast.
Jamie: Yeah. We do, don’t we? You know? That’s no lie.
Eric: Oh, absolutely.
Jamie: Five hours a day.
Eric: Yes. The unseen footage is…
Ben: Hey, can you guys hear me? Not you.
Ben: I think I’m going to have to go now.
Eric: Get a girl on, man.
Ben: Hey Natalie. Natalie, come here.
Eric: What do Kansan girls sound like?
Ben: Come on, just say, “Hi.”
Andrew: It’s so stressful, isn’t it, Natalie? Yeah.
Eric: [laughs] Yeah. Shy.
Ben: Say, “Hi.”
Jamie: Yeah. It’s pretty tough, I must admit.
Ben: Say “Hi, Jamie.”
Natalie: Hi Jamie.
Eric: Say hi to me!
Ben: That’s Eric.
Natalie: I did!
Natalie: Oh, hi Eric.
Jamie: Say hi to me, is that?
Ben: Hi to you? [laughs]
Eric: Hi! Hi Natalie. How are you?
Natalie: I’m good. How are you?
Eric: I’m going great. So, listen, how is Ben in school? Do you know Ben?
Natalie: I do know Ben.
Andrew: Did you ever go to a dance with Ben? Did you ever see him at a dance?
Jamie: Is he…
Natalie: Well, I’ve seen him at dances, but I don’t go with him.
Jamie: Is he a…
Andrew: Is he a wallflower? Tell me, are the rumors true?
Natalie: Are the rumors true of what?
Andrew: Is he a wallflower?
Eric: Is Ben a wallflower?
Natalie: A wallflower?
Jamie: Does he just stand by the wall and just do that all evening and look depressed?
Natalie: No, no, he dances.
Jamie: Or does he get up on to the…
Andrew: He dances? Oh, gee.
Jamie: Oh. Is he as much of a player as we’ve heard? They told us…
Eric: Does Ben’s milkshake bring all the boys to the yard?
[Ben and Natalie laugh]
Natalie: Yeah. All the boys. Definitely. Mhm.
Jamie: But, no girls?
Eric: Any girls?
Natalie: Of course. [laughs]
Ben: Okay, guys. Are you still there?
[Natalie laughs in background]
Eric: Well, we appreciate talking to you.
Jamie: No, we’ve gone in the one second.
Andrew: Yeah. [laughs]
Ben: [laughs] Shut up.
Eric: Thank you, Natalie.
Ben: See yeah, that’s, that’s Moundridge High School for you.
Andrew: The one girl.
Jamie: [laughs] Andrew, put that in. Put that in. That was actually really quite funny, I must admit.
Written by: Micah, Adrienne, Allison, Ally, Amanda, Eloise, Jessica, Judy, Mandie, Margaret, Martina, Matthew, Megan, Roni, Shannon and Shelly