MuggleCast 177 Transcript
[Intro music plays]
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[“Hedwig’s Theme” plays]
Jim Dale: [as Professor McGonagall] This is Professor McGonagall welcoming you all to MuggleCast hoping you enjoyed – Dobby! Dobby, come here! Here! Dobby! [as Dobby] Yes, I’d just like to say how very pleased I am to introduce MuggleCast to all of you! Thank you! Thank you!
[Show music begins]
Micah: Because Warner Bros. finally, finally, finally released Half-Blood Prince, this is MuggleCast Episode 177 for July 30, 2009.
[Show music continues]
Andrew: Welcome back to MuggleCast, everybody! We’re here for our 177th episode. That’s kind of lucky, right? Two sevens.
Mikey: That’s like double magical.
Andrew: We’ll never reach 777, so…
Laura: Well, you never know.
Andrew: [laughs] We’ll have to do – I don’t know, maybe for fun we can jump 600 episodes.
Laura: We’ll be forty but we could do it.
Matt: [imitating an old man’s voice] Welcome to MuggleCast…
Matt: What episode is this?
Laura: MuggleCast, the Nursing Home Edition.
Andrew: It’s been a while since we’ve had a recorded home-grown episode, but we’re so happy to be back and we’ve got Laura here, Micah, Matt and Mikey along with me.
Matt: Hi, guys.
Laura: Hey, Andrew.
Micah: [in nerd voice] Hi, Andrew.
Laura and Mikey: Hey.
Andrew: [In nerd voice] Yay! Podcasting! And this is our first recorded regular episode since the movie release. Thank you for bearing with us as you waited two weeks for us to get this one out. But we have a lot to discuss, of course, with the movie. We still haven’t heard Matt and Laura – Matt and Micah’s thoughts and Mikey’s thoughts, too.
Andrew: Yeah. Sorry, I get confused. You three are like Matt, Micah and Mikey – it’s just…
Matt: Yeah, I know – that’s amazing.
Mikey: But you know what, Matt? Me and Micah have “M-I”, you’re “M-A”.
Mikey: You’re the odd one out.
Laura: So, you’re out of the club.
Andrew: So he wins.
Mikey: You’re out of our club. You’re out of our club, Matt.
Matt: But alphabetically, I’m in front of you two, so doesn’t that make me better?
Andrew: Oh. Ah yeah, I agree.
Matt: Yeah. No, I’m the odd man out, I guess.
Mikey: You want to be as cool as us!
Matt: Yeah, can’t we just call me Mitt?
Mikey: Mitt, Mitty?
Andrew: All right. All right, girls, you’re both losers because your name starts with an “M” and I am the winner with “A”, so let’s move on. Let’s get into the show. I’m Andrew Sims.
Laura: I’m Laura Thompson.
Micah: I’m Micah Tannenbaum.
Matt: I’m Matt Britton.
Mikey: And I’m Mikey B.
[Show music continues]
News: Latest Half-Blood Prince Figures
Andrew: All right, Micah. We know the big news, of course, is the release of Half-Blood Prince, but has there been any other news to discuss besides that? Before we spend the entire episode on that.
Micah: Yeah. I mean, there’s obviously news going on right now because the movie was just released.
Micah: A couple weeks ago. But let’s talk I guess, a little bit about the numbers that are out there, and according to the most recent numbers that I was able to find, it says that Half-Blood Prince has now made $222 million here in the United States, which is $14 million ahead of where Order of the Phoenix was twelve days after its release. And it’s made an additional $405 million internationally, bringing the worldwide total to $627 million.
Andrew: Wow, pretty impressive! How does that compare to Order of the Phoenix?
Micah: That I don’t know, as far as total is concerned.
Mikey: Give me a second, I’ll pull it up. There’s a website that I love called BoxOfficeMojo.com.
Andrew: That’s a great site.
Matt: I love BoxOfficeMojo.
Andrew: It’s interesting. I mean, a lot of people were thinking, well, is Half-Blood Prince going to make more money because of the delay? You know, there’s more hype, there’s more build-up. But it doesn’t seem like that happened. Could it be because of IMAX being delayed? It’s just coming out today, the day we’re recording, this Wednesday.
Andrew: But do you think that’s going to really spike sales?
Laura: I don’t…
Matt: I don’t know.
Laura: …think so.
Andrew: Really, Laura?
Mikey: I know I’m going back again, like, two weeks later.
Laura: Yeah, I mean…
Andrew: Me too.
Laura: I definitely will, too.
Mikey: Normally I would see it a bunch.
Laura: But I guess I’m just thinking about the earlier films, where there wasn’t IMAX and the sales were really good. I mean, obviously the sales have improved each time.
Laura: I don’t know. Most people don’t seem very impressed with going to pay $12 to see a movie that has, like, twenty minutes of IMAX footage in it, you know?
Micah: Well that’s almost what a regular ticket costs, too, so, I mean, what’s the difference?
Matt: Well, no, I think it’s a…
Laura: Well depending on where you live. [laughs]
Matt: Yeah, it’s a little bit more.
Andrew: Right. But what are the numbers, Mikey?
Mikey: Well, opening weekend in general for Half-Blood Prince was $77,835 – or $77,835,727. Opening weekend for Order of the Phoenix was $77,108,414.
Mikey: And I did a little on the calculator; it’s only $727,313 more than Half-Blood Prince made…
Mikey: Opening weekend. Now, again, that’s just opening weekend stats.
Andrew: That’s surprising. So I guess what that says is really that the fandom hasn’t changed a bit.
Mikey: Order of the Phoenix also opened up in 4,285 theaters, whereas Half-Blood Prince actually opened up in more with 4,325 theaters. So…
Mikey: So it opened up in more theaters and that makes sense, but again, you’d think that they would make more money with that…
Mikey: …couple hundred theaters – or a hundred theaters more.
Andrew: So what it sort of says is that the film sort of still has the same amount of fans. It hasn’t grown, it hasn’t shrunk. So…
Andrew: Even with – I mean, the big thing with Order of the Phoenix was that there was that book coming out right after.
Matt: Yeah, that was a big summer for Harry Potter.
Micah: But twelve days into it, though, they’re saying that Half-Blood Prince has pulled out front by fourteen million. So that’s a little bit different in terms of what – opening weekend is what Mikey just said, but now that…
Micah: …more updated statistics are saying that it’s pulled out a little bit further.
Mikey: Yeah, at the two-week out it’s definitely further ahead because if you look at the domestic total, like, we’re almost to the complete domestic total in the U.S. of what Order of the Phoenix made.
Mikey: And we’re only two weeks in with today being the release of the IMAX, which I can’t imagine you being a fan and not wanting to go see IMAX just because it’s a completely different experience.
Andrew: I didn’t…
Mikey: It’s just awesome, I love IMAX.
Andrew: I didn’t see IMAX with Order of the Phoenix, but it was sort of because I wasn’t too happy with the film, but this film I love. But let me ask you guys about G-Force; this stupid hamster movie…
Andrew: It beat Half-Blood Prince the second weekend. This past weekend G-Force pulled in a few million more than Half-Blood Prince, and that blew me away.
Andrew: How could Half-Blood Prince not outperform better than stupid spy hamsters its second week in theaters?
[Matt and Laura laugh]
Mikey: You know that actually doesn’t surprise me simply because if you look at the drop-off, we just quoted opening weekend with seventy-seven million dollars, right? The drop-off was drastic, you know, the second weekend. It went to like – what was it? – fifty? I’m trying to find the numbers real quick for the second weekend when Half-Blood Prince pulled in…
Micah: I think it was around 30.
Mikey: Yeah, it was like 30. It was a drastic drop-off. Now you’ve got to remember that the core fans, or a lot – well not the core fans – but a big chunk of Half-Blood Prince‘s fans are in the same viewing audience as what G-Force is. Now…
Mikey: We’re a little bit older so – well think about it; all the moms and their little kids want to go see Harry Potter…
Matt: Well, yeah….
Mikey: …we’re a little bit older, and yes, we’re older and G-Force is not as appealing to us, but a good chunk of the people that went and saw Harry Potter the first weekend, now want to go see a movie again, they’re not going to see Harry Potter again. They’re going to see G-Force.
Mikey: So G-Force definitely has a lot of people coming to it.
Mikey: And, of course, I don’t know about your theater, but I know G-Force was a preview in my theater saying, “Opening next weekend.” So, again, you saw…
Mikey: …Harry Potter the weekend before and now you know these cool hamsters are coming out next weekend, and you want to have your mom take you.
Andrew: They’re not cool. They are not cool.
Micah: I don’t know what it says about us, though, because while G-Force took the box office here, over in England, Half-Blood Prince stayed up at the top. So…
Micah: …I guess…
Andrew: See, Americans…
Laura: Well, see…
Micah: …we don’t know…
Andrew: …are so inundated with crap…
Laura: Yeah. See this…
Laura: …is the country…
Andrew: …they’ll go for…
Andrew: …hamster movies.
Laura: …that Beverly Hills Chihuahua movie, like, number one…
Laura: …for some ridiculous…
Laura: …amount of time?
Andrew: Well, they picked a weekend that didn’t have much competition. [laughs] I hope Harry Potter would have beaten Beverly Hills Chihuahua in its whole week.
Laura: Well, you never know. [laughs] It just got beaten by spy hamsters.
Andrew: Oh, I know. I hear you.
Matt: It’s so…
Andrew: I don’t…
Matt: Well, Flo Rida was in this – in the movie too. He was singing.
Laura: [laughs] Oh.
Andrew: Where did you hear that?
Matt: They – that…
Laura: …there you go.
Matt: …contributed to it.
Laura: That answers it.
Andrew: Well, let’s move on from that. We get it. Half-Blood Prince was a great success. What else is going on, Micah?
News: Alcohol in Half-Blood Prince
Micah: Well, kind of along the lines of Half-Blood Prince, there was an article done by the New York Times talking about drinking in the movie and its impact – or potential impact I guess that it can have, on children that are underage that are going to see it. And there are a couple of scenes that were mentioned and I think the first one was actually put in by the director. I don’t remember in the book itself Hermione being tipsy after their trip to Hogsmeade. But there was Hagrid, obviously. He passed out in the hut when Harry and Slughorn are visiting with him after Aragog’s death. And then also the poisoned mead that Ron drinks. So…
Micah: …a couple of instances of alcohol in the movie. But to me when I was watching the movie, that really didn’t strike me at all. I didn’t really think much about it. But I guess mothers who are taking their children have a little bit different opinion.
Andrew: And there were some moms quoted in this article, right?
Micah: Yeah. One mother, Liz Perle, who is a mom of two teenage boys, said that, “She was bothered by so many scenes showing alcohol as a coping mechanism.”
Laura: Oh my God.
Matt: Isn’t that what…
Laura: Give me…
Mikey: She’s Laura Mallory.
Laura: …a break.
Matt: Isn’t that what alcohol…
Matt: …is, though?
Andrew: Laura, why does that send you off?
Laura: Okay. Because people – I think again this is just an instance of somebody taking this issue and trying to put it up on a pedestal. And making a big deal…
Mikey: I agree.
Laura: …out of it because it’s in something that’s mainstream. They’re just trying to get attention.
Laura: It’s the same case with Laura Mallory. What they’re not considering is, of course, the story is based out of England. And unfortunately for us, we’re the…
Laura: We’re the…
Mikey: Thank you.
Laura: Yeah. We’re the only country on this planet that has such a taboo kind of outlook towards alcohol. Everybody else kind of just use it as a casual thing. Like, let’s go and have a drink.
Andrew: Good point.
Laura: No, no. Not us. We aren’t fun.
Andrew: Although I got to say, it was kind of surprising when you see Hermione looking a little drunk [laughs] coming out of The Three Broomsticks. I mean, that made me laugh a bit.
Laura: I thought it was funny, but it…
Matt: I thought it was cute!
Laura: …didn’t bother me.
Andrew: It was funny, but surprising. But what, Laura?
Laura: I said it didn’t bother me. Like, I…
Andrew: Oh, okay.
Laura: I don’t know. I don’t get these people.
Andrew: I agree.
Micah: I mean, let’s not…
Micah: …even focus on the violence of the film. Let’s focus on the fact that, you know, there’s a little bit of alcohol here and there. But there was another quote that I think sums it up a lot better. And this woman said: “I think the alcohol angle washed over me because of the magical context of the film. This isn’t a real school, real teachers or real students, so it’s almost like the drinking isn’t real. I wonder…”
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Micah: “I wonder how many kids even know what mead is.”
Andrew: That’s true.
Andrew: That’s true. And it’s not, like, the stuff was that – it wasn’t that obvious. Like, when Hagrid falls backwards and hits his head, he could just be tired and falling asleep.
Andrew: And Hermione didn’t come off too drunk. So it wasn’t too over the top. I agree with Laura. They’re trying to get attention. We weren’t even sure if to post this on MuggleNet. I mean, if this was from, like, a tabloid or something, we wouldn’t have. But the fact that it was from the New York Times and – you know, they’re not perfect, but…
Laura: I think it goes to show…
Laura: …that they were having a slow news day.
Matt: Yeah. [laughs]
Andrew: [laughs] Yeah.
Micah: Yeah. I agree.
Andrew: What else is going on, Micah?
News: Harry Potter Damaging Journalism
Micah: Well, a recent article by Baylor University asks if Harry Potter may have a negative impact on newspapers and journalism. And one of the quotes from the article says, “The books present an unnecessarily pessimistic view of journalism today. Since literature can play an important role in helping children learn and possibly empathize with situations experienced by the characters, the potential for influence on journalism is strong.” And I assume that it’s referring to Rita Skeeter…
Micah: …and The Daily Prophet.
Andrew: And also – yeah. It also talks about the stuff with the Ministry. It says, “The analysis finds” – The analysis, the study they did, “…finds an overwhelmingly negative representation of journalism throughout the first six books, raising concerns that child readers will view journalism as corrupt, deceptive and an unattractive career choice.” So yeah, it does focus on Rita Skeeter, and I think a little bit on the Ministry too.
Andrew: …controlling the Daily Prophet, so what do you guys think about this? I mean this is a really interesting study, I thought, from Baylor University. Laura, do you have any opinions on this? Do you think it negatively affects journalism?
Laura: No. I think journalism negati – [stumbles] negatively affects journalism.
[Andrew, Laura and Matt laugh]
Andrew: But you could argue that if kids who aren’t very aware of journalism look at this or read the books and…
Mikey: This is the same thing as before with the drinking. It really is.
Mikey: And they’re taking one aspect – and same thing with the Dumbledore being gay issue. You can take any aspect of any book – not just Harry Potter and say, “Oh, it casts a bad light on whatever.”
Matt: Yeah, they’re just…
Matt: …doing it for Harry Potter because it’s a really popular series.
Andrew: Yeah, I…
Mikey: And its popular right now because the movie just came out.
Andrew: I still did find it interesting. I don’t know.
Andrew: Let me get Laura back in. Go ahead, Micah.
Micah: I think though too, you have to remember that the story’s coming from one individual’s perspective and a lot of times its how that person is being perceived by the newspaper and…
Micah: …if you notice, there are a number of characters in the series that agree with what’s being said in the newspaper about what’s going on and we’ve done shows in the past too where we’ve talked about media corruption, government corruption, which is stressed very, very strongly – even J.K. Rowling has said so in this books. I mean she’s making a point about how the media can act at times and how the government can act at times and they’re very strong suggestions, just like any other themes that are in the books.
Andrew: All right, well enough with the studies. Enlighten us with some other news please, some news that Laura won’t get angry about.
News: Ultimate Collector’s Editions
Micah: Okay, I can’t promise that she’s not going to get angry about this.
Micah: But one of the other stories, non-Half-Blood Prince related – the Ultimate Collector’s Edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets are now available for pre-order on Amazon and now the online store has revealed the Blu-ray and standard DVD covers.
Micah: You asked the question, Andrew, is this a little bit too early?
Andrew: I like – yeah – I – this – I don’t know, I mean we know now and David Heyman said at the premiere that they’re going to be doing some Ultimate Collector’s Edition once all eight films are out. But I just think it’s a little early to be releasing Sorcerer’s Stone and Chamber of Secrets Ultimate Collector’s Edition. I mean, yeah, it’s been almost ten years but like can’t you guys see them releasing like Super Mega Ultra Super Plus Plus Plus…
Andrew: …Editions like another ten years from now?
Matt: Why would they call it the Ultimate Collection if they’re not all out yet? Wouldn’t the ‘ultimate’ signify that all of them have to be out together?
Andrew: Well the ultimate of each one of these films.
Mikey: Yeah this is the Ultimate Can’t-Get-Any-Better Collector’s Edition DVD.
Andrew: Yeah and you know they’re going to re-release these!
Laura: Oh yeah.
Andrew: They’re going to be doing like a 10th anniversary edition.
Mikey: I’m waiting for the 20th anniversary special edition version just like Star Wars where they’re going to go in, add new songs, new dance things. It’s really – it’s going to be just like the Star Wars saga.
Mikey: They’re going to have all these different versions and then they’re going to release – you know, fifteen years later they’re going to release the definitive, re-mastered, perfect edition and that’s the one you’re going to want to get.
Mikey: But are you really going to wait fifteen years for the whole thing to be done and everything to get it? No.
Mikey: You’re going to buy it as you go and maybe, you know – I know I had all the Star Wars movies on VHS tapes and everything and finally when they came out on DVD – I have three different DVD copies of it. And same thing with Harry Potter, I have two copies of a couple of my favourite ones on DVD and I have a couple Blu-ray versions too. So you’re going to end up buying multiple copies, just like how I have multiple copies of the books. So…
Andrew: It’s got to have a lot of stuff on it because it retails for fifty dollars and Amazon has it for sale at thirty-five but…
Micah: That’s a lot.
Andrew: …fifty dollars I mean – yeah, that’s not a standard Blu-ray price.
Andrew: So I’m wondering what the hell is also going to be on this.
Matt: Well do you think it might be like what they’re doing now with a DVD, Blu-ray and a digital copy? Plus like something else?
Andrew: Maybe. Yeah. What it says right on the cover of Year 1 – the Year 1 box, it says, “Includes ‘Creating the World.'” So maybe new interviews about creating the Great Hall and all that? Who knows? If it’s new interviews that would make it worth it. But…
Micah: I know we said it didn’t have anything to do with Half-Blood Prince but could they be releasing these now because there’s the hype surrounding the movie?
Andrew: Probably, I mean these aren’t even out yet though.
Andrew: And they don’t have set dates, we just have covers so – who knows what’s going on here?
Matt: I do like the design of the covers too.
Andrew: Yeah. Yeah yeah, I do like how they’re all like they have the big number “Year 1,” “Year 2.”
Mikey: Yeah and I like the color scheme where it’s blue and then red. I want to see what the next one has.
Andrew: Yeah, and the disc – the Chamber of Secrets cover says, “Includes ‘Creating the Characters.'” So Year One has, “Creating the World,” Year Two has, “Creating the Characters,” Year Three will have, “Creating the Random Stuff Alfonso Comes Up With,” possibly?
[Laura and Matt laugh]
Matt: “Creating the Stuff.”
Andrew: Year Four will have, “Creating the Director We Really Didn’t Like.”
Laura: Yeah. [laughs]
Andrew: “Why We Chose Him.” How exciting. I can’t wait to see those. [laughs] Okay, Micah, what else? Out with it already. Come on.
News: Theme Park Update
Micah: All right, Wizarding World of Harry Potter update. We got some news today from down in Orlando.
Micah: A sleuth named Laura Thompson…
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Micah: …over at the…
Laura: Oh, really?
Micah: …highway central message boards has unearthed a dozen recent trademark applications made by Warner Bros. Entertainment that appear to be for rides, shops and restaurants that will be part of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal, Orlando. And we got a bunch of those names. Some of them not surprising, others a little bit interesting. Do you want to go through those names?
Andrew: Yeah, give us a preview. What are we going to be calling these things?
Micah: The rides supposedly are, “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey”…
[Andrew, Laura, and Matt laugh]
Laura: That’s original.
Matt: It sounds like an Indiana Jones movie.
[Laura and Micah laugh]
Andrew: Maybe that’s just a place – I have a feeling that one’s just a placeholder. They couldn’t name it something that corny.
Mikey: Oh, come on.
Micah: Well they think that’s going to take place in the castle itself. Yeah.
Laura: Oh my God.
Micah: All right. “Flight of the Hippogriff.”
Andrew: Eh, okay.
Matt: That sounds like a roller coaster.
Micah: And “Dragon Challenge”…
Andrew: “Dragon Challenge”?
Micah: …which they think is going to be a roller coaster.
Laura: Oh, yeah.
Matt: The Dragon Challenge?
Andrew: There’s already an existing ride – Laura, I think you’ve talked about this before…
Andrew: …the Duelling Dragons ride?
Andrew: And they’re just going to re-theme it.
Laura: Yeah, pretty much. They already have two giant dragons built outside of it, too. So I think…
Micah: So what…
Andrew: Is it a good ride?
Laura: It is a really good ride. It is good, so…
Micah: Are we thinking they’re going to take the dragons from Goblet of Fire and use them…
Laura: I think they might just…
Micah: …for this ride?
Laura: …remodel the ones they have to make the look more Harry Potter-ish.
Matt: Do you think like the Flight of the Hippogriff might be like the Flying Dumbo ride at Disneyland?
Laura: Well, that’s what I’m thinking because…
Mikey: I hope so.
Laura: There’s actually like in that section of the park, there’s a kids’ roller coaster called the Flying Unicorn…
Laura: …so when you said that, that’s what I thought of.
Laura: I was like, “Aw, man. Seriously?” [laughs]
Mikey: No, I hope it is. That would be so much fun. Can you imagine like climbing…
Mikey: …into a little Hippogriff and going around? Like, I really want it to be just like Dumbo where you can go up and down. It’d be so much fun! [laughs]
Andrew: I want thrill rides.
Mikey: Yeah, but I want rides where I can take photos and goof off and have fun. I think the Flight of the Hippogriff, which is my Dumbo with Buckbeak. That would be awesome.
Laura: I think as long as they sell shirts that say, “I survived the Flight of the Hippogriff,” that would be okay.
Mikey: That would be so awesome! Come on, if it’s like Dumbo, I survived this crazy, crazy ride.
Matt: Ah, man. I think I’m kind of with Andrew. I’d rather be in this kind of plastic Hippogriff and then fall – like free falling like 500 feet with a Hippogriff. Or maybe…
Andrew: Yeah, like Tower of Terror.
Matt: Yeah! Like…
Andrew: Only it’s Tower of – Tower of Astronomy, or Astronomy Tower of Terror. [laughs]
Laura: Dumbledore’s death. Oh my God. That would be so horrible. [laughs]
[Andrew, Matt and Mikey laugh]
Mikey: Oh man.
Matt: Oh God.
Andrew: Yeah, like right before the first big fall…
Mikey: You see a big green light.
[Laura and Matt continue laughing]
Mikey: And then you drop.
[Andrew, Laura, Matt and Mikey laugh]
Andrew: No no, you hear, “Sirius, plea-” or, “Severus, please.”
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Andrew: And then it drops.
Matt: As soon as you fall down, you hear, “Avada Kedavra!” [laughs]
Andrew: Let’s go to Universal with that.
Mikey: Yeah. You hear “Avada Kedavra” and it’s a green flash, and that’s when they take your picture and that’s when you fall.
Laura: [laughs] Oh my God.
Mikey: Since it’s a green flash, you’re tinted green as you’re falling.
Andrew: We should work for…
Laura: We should.
Andrew: …Universal. We need to propose some of these ideas. Let’s come up with some proposals.
Andrew: Okay. Well Micah, I believe there’s some last-minute news to discuss as well. Or one last piece of news to discuss.
MuggleCast 177 Transcript (continued)
News: Deathly Hallows Filming Update
Micah: Last piece of news here is some Deathly Hallows filming to update on. We posted not too long ago that filming got underway what looks to be part of the Seven Potters chase scene.
Micah: But what’s odd about it is that it looks like they’re filming it on the ground, and it’s supposed to be taking place in the air.
Andrew: Yeah. [laughs]
Andrew: That’s upset a lot of people. [laughs] So yeah, like these photos – now the thing to keep in mind is that this doesn’t mean the whole journey’s going to be on the ground. Maybe this could be like, I don’t know, the beginning of it and then they’ll go up in the air or something. Because…
Laura: Or maybe they’ve thrown in some random battle that didn’t exist in the book.
Andrew: Yeah. [laughs] I’m just thinking that if – assuming that they are going to film the flying scenes, we’re not going to see them filming these anyway, because they need to do them inside studios. And there won’t be paparazzi in there shooting that, so I think people shouldn’t worry.
Micah: The other weird thing is that they’re driving against traffic, so that leads me to believe they’re going to be using this in the film at some point.
Andrew: Oh yeah. I didn’t notice that. Man, that’s going to add some extra fun. Some extra thrills, it’s like he made a wrong turn or something.
Mikey: We’re going the wrong way!
Andrew: And there’s some shots of Harry turning back and casting spells so it’s interesting, interesting. A little worrying but…
Micah: It’s probably going to be similar to Order of the Phoenix when they were on the Thestrals flying back and they went through London.
News: Deathly Hallows Cast Update
Andrew: London, yeah. Any other Deathly Hallows news?
Micah: Bill Nigh was cast as Scrimgeour during our time off.
Micah: And it says he starts filming next week in his role.
Micah: So that should be cool.
Matt: To be honest, did anybody not see this coming?
Andrew: I didn’t know who Bill Nigh is, but apparently everyone has…
Laura: Really? You’ve never seen like Pirates of the Caribbean?
Andrew: I have, but I didn’t – who does he play?
Laura: He’s Davy Jones.
Matt: It’s a remarkable likeness.
Mikey: What about Shaun of the Dead?
Laura: Yeah, that too.
Matt: Love Actually.
Andrew: I haven’t seen that.
Laura: And Hot Fuzz.
Mikey: Hot Fuzz? Come on!
Andrew: Okay, sorry. I’m not up on my films, stop hating on me. I could just develop Harry Potter rides, that’s all I can do.
Laura: [laughs] Avada Kedavra!
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Andrew: No, all I want it to say is, “Severus, please.”
Andrew: And then we just fall at the speed of light.
Andrew: And you see Dumbledore’s body going down with you in front of you.
[Laura and Mikey laugh]
Laura: Man, that’s awful.
Andrew: That would be so cool!
Matt: How would that be cool?
Andrew: Because I love the Tower of Terror at Disney and that’s a…
Matt: You want to see some guy plunging down to his death while you’re going down with him?
Andrew: [laughs] Yeah, it would make it extra scary!
Andrew: It’s quite a thrill.
Andrew: Anyway, go on, Micah.
News: Tom Felton on Twitter
Micah: And the last piece of Deathly Hallows news is just that Tom Felton has been filming the past few weeks. That’s about all I got.
Andrew: Ah, yes. Well that guy is a big Twitter user and he has been Twittering to all of his fans that he has been filming and keeps he talking about how he needs to get his hair bleached and he keeps saying that the scenes are fantastic, so he’s really getting everyone excited, I must say.
Andrew: All right, so is that it?
News: Shop Names in the Wizarding World
Micah: Yeah, that’s it. I just wanted to add one more thing because we didn’t really because we didn’t really talk about it, for the Wizarding World, the names of…
Micah: …different shops and restaurants, but they’re pretty obvious, I guess you can say, there’s nothing really anybody didn’t expect.
Andrew: Yeah. That’s true. You want to run through them real quick?
Micah: Sure. Shops are Dervish and Banges, Honeydukes, Ollivanders, Zonko’s and a place called Owl Post.
[Andrew and Micah laughs]
Andrew: Can you mail letters there, do you think?
Micah: Yeah, just mind yourself while walking because I’m sure there’s a lot of…
Micah: And restaurants…
Andrew: Hopefully not.
Micah: …Three Broomsticks, something called Magic Neep…
Laura: What the hell?
Micah: …and Butterbeer. I’m not a big fan of the last two. I don’t think they’re as creative.
Laura: Wait, they are calling a restaurant Butterbeer?
Micah: For right now. It’s tentative, I guess.
Micah: I hope they change that.
Andrew: Maybe it’s just…
Mikey: Maybe it’s a bar.
Matt: Maybe it’s a vendor.
Andrew: Yeah, maybe it is – oh yeah, that makes sense. What if it’s just a vendor?
Andrew: Like on one of the sidewalks or something. Yeah. Okay. well, thank you, Micah! You are a wonderful news anchor, and we love having you here.
Micah: All right, I’m out of here. I’m done for the day.
Announcements: Podcast Alley
Andrew: Time for some announcements! We like to remind you guys about all the stuff going on in the MuggleCast world. Don’t forget to vote for us on Podcast Alley, that’s PodcastAlley.com. We appreciate your vote over there because it helps us get noticed within the podcast community. Of course, we’re at the end of July here, so you know give us a little bump at the end of July but also vote for us in August, since August is right around the corner.
Andrew: Also we were at Azkatraz last week in San Francisco. Mikey wasn’t there but – and Micah, for that matter. [laughs] But…
Andrew: …Laura, Matt and I were. [mean voice] It’s not okay! No, but we had so much fun meeting the fans, right guys?
Laura: Yeah, it was a really great convention. So many new people too, new convention-goers.
Andrew: Yes, I love meeting new people.
Andrew: It was great. And some people we’ve seen there before. And Eric was there too, as well as Elysa who’s been on MuggleCast a few times. So all in all, it was a lot fun. And we did a Leaky Mug with our friends at PotterCast, we did a panel on how to podcast and we did a MuggleCast meet up. All three events were very well attended.
Andrew: So thank you so much for everyone who showed up and purchased a T-shirt to help support the show. Keep an eye – we still have MuggleCast T-shirts for sale from Azkatraz, because we didn’t sell them all, and we want to still sell them so I think what we’re going to try to do is to sell them through the podcast. So if you want a T-shirt, keep an eye on the MuggleCast.com over the next week or so and we’ll post details on how to get a shirt if you didn’t attend Azkatraz but you still want one. Because we do want to sell them. We’ll probably sell them for between fifteen and twenty dollars including shipping.
Andrew: So, yeah. Keep an eye on MuggleCast.com if you’re interested and we can hopefully get you hooked up with a shirt. We had this wonderful designer, Stephanie Falcos. She’s a listener of the show and she made these great designs for us, so we can’t thank her enough for those.
Matt: Thanks Stephanie!
Announcements: MuggleCast’s Four-Year Anniversary
Andrew: Okay and last but not least, our four-year anniversary is actually approaching here on MuggleCast. We started the show August 7th 2005. That’s when our first episode came out. So four years ago right around now, Ben, Kevin, and I were planning the show and we were like, “Ahh! How are we going to do this?” And we were watching Laura complain in the forums that she wanted to be on and we were ignoring her. [laughs]
Andrew: So… [laughs]
Matt: Love you.
Laura: Sexist pigs.
Andrew: So we’re going to put up another episode – Episode 178 – maybe within the next one to two weeks and we’ll talk a lot about the show over the past four years. So we’d like you guys to send in your favorite memories of the show and how you use and listen to MuggleCast – just e-mail in like – you don’t have to e-mail in specific clips but tell us how you’ve enjoyed the show over the past four years. You know, they could be Chicken Soup-ish or whatever. And we’ll read some of those on the next episode and we’ll talk about four years of MuggleCast. It’s pretty insane to think we’ve had four solid years now and we’ll be entering our fifth year of MuggleCasting! It’s pretty solid.
Laura: That’s insane, Andrew.
Mikey: That’s kind of awesome.
Andrew: It doesn’t hurt, Matt.
Matt: Oh, I wasn’t hurt. I was excited. Sorry.
Mikey: That was his excited yell. Can’t you tell the difference?
Andrew: No – sort of.
Mikey: I can.
Muggle-mail: Unnecessary HBP Scenes
Andrew: Okay. That’s enough for announcements so let’s get into some Muggle-mail and this is all about Half-Blood Prince because everybody’s Half-Blood Prince crazy right now!
Mikey: [pants] Crazy!
Andrew: Laura, can you read the first one please?
Andrew: Crazy! Hey!
Laura: The first one comes from Christina Funess, age 21 of Honduras, and she writes:
“Hey guys! Love the show. You guys are great. I just saw the movie yesterday and even though I really liked it and I do think it’s the best one yet, I was a little disappointed about certain scenes that were included in the movie and certain scenes from the book that weren’t. I just thought the whole scene with the Burrow burning could have been eliminated just because it didn’t really make any sense and instead they should have shown the whole battle at Hogwarts between the students and the Order against the Death Eaters. I think the battle is so important in the book and there was no mention of Bill being attacked by Fenrir. So I was wondering what they’re going to do with Bill in the Seventh because they have to include the wedding.”
Andrew: What did you guys think of this scene?
Matt: Honestly, I don’t think it was really necessary.
Mikey: I think it was. And I’m going to take probably the side most people won’t agree on this one just because – again I got into the series through the movies, initially, and I think that scene was really important because it really brought out the dread. Because, the Burrow – you really saw Molly, she was the mothering type – and just looking at it from a movie perspective, not a book perspective at all – Molly was kind of something that parents and even kids could relate to because it’s like their mom and they’re having their house destroyed and being scared. That really puts you in a state of fear of what’s really going on because think of the book – the book really is not that scary. It’s all about Draco and the Half-Blood Prince’s potion book and everything that’s going on – you really don’t see Voldemort much in the book itself. It’s really very isolated to what’s going on with – at Hogwarts. Harry’s learning a lot about Voldemort but you don’t see a lot of what’s going on outside. And by having them…
Mikey: …destroy the Burrow, you get a sense of fear for what’s going on in the world around them. Which without that, I don’t think they could have portrayed in the movie by going with…
Mikey: … what’s in the book. Now, we knew because again in the book but that scene was very critical to kind of explain that out.
Andrew: That’s basically what David Barren, one of the producers, said at the junket, he said, “The trio are always reading about the fear but we wanted them to experience it.” So this was their way of making them experience all the trouble going on around them. So, I – personally I wasn’t too much of a fan with the scene either. Micah, what did you think of the scene?
Micah: I didn’t really – I kind of agree with Mikey. I didn’t really have a problem with the scene. I thought it fit only because – like you just said – they were trying to strike that balance and they did a really good job of it. Obviously, you had the opening attack on London early on and then I think they wanted to kind of continue that throughout the course of the movie as a build up to what was going to happen at Hogwarts, but I didn’t – I just didn’t really see that much of an issue with it. I know a lot of people had a problem with it. But kind of the other part of her question too, talking about Bill and the wedding that’s supposed to happen in the seventh movie – I think that that’s going to be there. I don’t think it’s as critical that they showed him being attacked by Fenrir Greyback though. I think that’s one of those things that they can leave out.
Matt: Yeah. I mean they never even put in the movie that Fenrir Greyback was even a werewolf.
Laura: Yeah, he was just kind of hairy.
Laura: The way I felt about this scene was it was a really great scene to behold – just really well put together. It was wonderful to watch. I don’t think I would’ve missed it had it not been there. The only problem I have with it though is that when you really start to pick it apart there certain things that don’t make logical sense and these are things that were brought up by a lot of fans. The fact that Harry goes running and all they do is just go, “Harry! No!” Like they don’t do anything and then these like spots open in the fire magically for Harry and Ginny to go running through but these other more practiced wizards can’t get through the fire.
Andrew: Magical spots. Yeah. Yeah, I mean, you can’t let Dan actually jump through fire. That’d be insane.
Laura: Yeah. That would be too much of a stunt.
Micah: One thing about Greyback though that I thought was interesting – I don’t know if anyone else caught it – I thought Lupin, when he first walked outside into the night, I thought he could smell Fenrir Greyback.
Micah: I thought that was kind of like something that the director put in there that maybe not everybody would get if you hadn’t read the book.
[Everyone talk at once]
Matt: Like because you could tell he was sensing something. He knew what he was smelling.
Andrew: Yeah. It was funny when Tonks was like “Oh it’s always worse right before the full moon.” Or, what’d she say?
Matt: Or “the first phase is always…”
Laura: Well, she was like “The first night of the cycle is always the worst.”
Andrew: That was – you could be a little immature with that statement, that line.
Laura: Yeah, we totally were.
Matt: It’s his time of the cycle.
Laura: His time of the month.
Muggle Mail: Dear Warner Bros.
Andrew: Oh poor, poor Lupin. Okay, this next e-mail – I wanted to read this because this was funny. It’s sort of like a “Huh?!” – or “Huh?!” – I can’t do it anymore. I’m too old for this. But every once in a while people think that we’re W.B. like MuggleNet and MuggleCast are Warner Bros. and so sometimes people ask like if they can audition for the movie and they direct it as
“Dear W.B.” when they’re writing to us. But anyway, this one came in just the other day:
“I have no idea why you waited so long to release the ‘Half-Blood Prince.’ It was very disappointing and most awful. The movies before it were very entertaining and followed the books better. What happened? If there is going to be a follow up with the next movie I hope you go back to the standards you set in the beginning. This one was really awful. It is really sad when you come out of a theater and there are other people speaking their disappointment as well. Well just thought that you should know that this one was ‘terribkle’ compared to the other ‘Harry Potter’ movies, even the kids wanted to know what happened.”
And this is from Patricia Moore.
Laura: “Even the kids wanted to know what happened?”
Andrew: I – yeah, I have a hard time feeling bad for people like her when she doesn’t even know that we’re not W.B. It’s kind of weird.
Micah: And there’s a “k” in terrible?
Andrew: Yeah, not too good of a speller.
Laura: And there’s a zero in compared.
Andrew: Just so everybody knows, we’re not WB. Yeah she spelled compared with a zero. Com-zero-ared.
Mikey: Well, you know, yeah I can understand people being upset – I’m trying to look at the good here okay? I always do. I can see – I can understand people being upset. I haven’t given my feelings on the Half-Blood Prince yet, which we’ll get to later. I think definitely – I find it kind of odd that she says this is a lower standard because personally I feel like this is significantly better than Order of the Phoenix for a wide range of reasons but…
Andrew: Me too, and we’ll get into that more later. Matt, can you read the next e-mail?
Muggle Mail: Not Enough Snape?
Matt: Yeah. Okay, so our next e-mail comes from Ronnie, 15, from New Jersey and Ronnie writes:
“Hey MuggleCasters – huge fan of the show. I was just wondering what you guys thought about the whole Snape teaching Defense Against Dark Arts scenario. During Dumbledore’s speech he announces Snape as the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher and the Great Hall breaks out in whispers, but that was it. The fact that Snape had finally gotten the teaching position that he’d been after since he first started working at Hogwarts only seemed to matter for 30 seconds and then nobody cared anymore. I think that by showing Snape’s classes actually in progress, moviegoers would be able to see more of his bitterness towards Harry rather than just seeing him being a jerk around Hogwarts. What do you think? Does the film do Snape’s character any justice without showing him actually teaching? Or could there have been more? Anyway, you guys are totally awesome and Matt your red shoes make me smile. Keep up the awesomeness.”
Andrew: I assume she’s friends with you on Facebook. Otherwise I don’t know how she would know such a thing.
Matt: I guess not. I wear Red Vans by the way. Those are my favorite shoes ever!
Andrew: You’re so hip.
Matt: They’re cool, okay? You can’t deny Vans are awesome.
Andrew: One thing I really enjoyed about the first two movies is that you do see a lot of classroom interaction and yeah, I think it was a time constraint thing as ninety-nine percent of the things going on in these films are. So, I don’t know. I missed it, but then again I don’t think they needed to put much emphasis on Snape being Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. I mean, they had the moment. Dumbledore noted that he’s the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher now. Obviously, so Slughorn taking Potions made sense, but I don’t think they had to put too much on it.
Andrew: And seeing the Potions class in Half-Blood Prince was nice, too.
Matt: Yeah, it was a good scene.
Laura: I also kind of thought that Snape’s character did get enough development just because they showed his interactions with Draco and Dumbledore.
Laura: And I think those things were far more important than his classroom presence.
Andrew: True. Yeah, I mean Ronnie was bringing up the whole point, I guess, about just Snape’s hatred towards Harry, which we really didn’t see in this movie too much. Unless I’m missing something.
Laura: Well, I think so. “You just know.”
Andrew: Yeah. Yeah.
Mikey: It’s been built up already.
Micah: You get a lot of it in the prior films, though, and you can sense how he really feels about Harry from that. I don’t really think you needed it in this movie, even though you kind of have that battle going on in the book between Harry and Snape because Harry is supposed to be this great Defense Against the Dark Arts student, and now he’s kind of going head to head with Snape in the classroom.
Andrew: Yeah. Yep. Okay, next e-mail. Micah, could you read that? The final one for today.
Muggle Mail: Harry in the Café
Micah: Final e-mail comes from Lara, 21, of Texas, and she says:
“Hey MuggleCast, what did you guys think of the opening scene of ‘Half-Blood Prince’? Personally, I thought the whole thing with Harry flirting with that waitress was really out of character. My first thought when I saw that scene was that Harry would never do that. I know they did that scene as a way to open the film without the Dursleys, but for me, the way they had Harry act was extremely off-putting. He just doesn’t act like that. Your thoughts? Also, why didn’t the pictures in the ‘Daily Prophet’ move? Other than that first scene, I loved the movie and thought it was a good interpretation of the book. I’d love to hear what y’all think.”
Laura: My only problem with this scene was that I don’t think Harry would be sitting in a Muggle cafe reading a wizard newspaper. That was kind of dumb.
Laura: But aside from that, I mean come on, he’s a sixteen year old boy. Of course he’s going to notice a pretty girl.
Andrew: And the other weird thing was…
Laura: Give him a break.
Andrew: …the pictures in the newspaper stopped moving when she came around and that doesn’t happen in the books, right? They keep moving. Because she was like, “I swore I just saw one of them move.”
Mikey: Yeah. I don’t think she says it about today…
Andrew: But you know…
Mikey: …she says, “I swear, you know I saw one move like a while ago.” Like, you know. Because it sounds like Harry has been to that shop a couple times.
Andrew: Oh. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.
Mikey: She says, like “The other day.”
Andrew: I’ve got to be honest. The first time I saw the film – like I guess my brain needs to transition between the American accent and the British accent because that entire scene I sat there saying, “What are they saying?” because they were like mumbling in their British accent and my brain hadn’t adjusted yet to understanding the accent. I literally could not understand the entire scene.
Laura: You’re so uncultured, Andrew.
Matt: Wow. I know! Exactly! You took the words right out of my mouth, Laura.
Andrew: Is that more sad than funny? Maybe I was just awestruck at seeing the movie, finally, but it was just like – I don’t know why I literally could not understand it. I was just like, “What are they saying?”
Micah: I thought leaving the Dursleys out was a big mistake, but…
Mikey: I agree.
Andrew: Me, too.
Micah: …and I think they could have done a really good job with it – that whole scene between Dumbledore and especially Petunia.
Andrew: Yeah. That’s classic Dumbledore, too, in the beginning there. It would have been great to see that.
Matt: Well, maybe we’ll see it in the next movie.
Matt: Oh wait!
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Main Discussion: Half-Blood Prince Film
Andrew: Well, enough with e-mails. Let’s get into our discussion of Half-Blood Prince. There’s so much to talk about and we’re all really excited to finally get down and dirty with it. Let’s just go around and get quick initial reactions from everyone. And we’ll start with Matt and Mikey since we haven’t heard theirs yet and I guess we haven’t heard Laura’s yet either because the Leaky Mug hasn’t been released yet. Sorry. So, Laura, let’s start with you. What are your general thoughts of the film? Tell us, what did you think of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince?
Laura’s Opinion of the Movie
Laura: I have to say first off that I haven’t actually genuinely appreciated one of these movies as a film since I saw Prisoner of Azkaban, so this movie was a nice treat for me because I walked out of the theater automatically just like, “Wow, this was a great movie.” They did such a good job kind of condensing the story, but also just keeping true to the spirit of the books. It, along with Prisoner of Azkaban, had a lot of things that weren’t cannon, a lot of things that weren’t in the books. They definitely did take some liberties, but I thought all of the liberties they took were keeping sort of in spirit with the books. And I really appreciated it. Also the foreshadowing was outstanding. I feel like for once in our lives they actually realized there’s another book that comes after the story they’re telling. So they did a lot of foreshadowing, and I really appreciated it.
Mikey’s Opinion of the Movie
Mikey: My initial reaction was, I liked it. I was a little worried going into it because I didn’t like Order of the Phoenix that much. I liked the film but it was probably my least favorite out of all of them. And that was mainly because of David Yates. I didn’t feel like he was really that strong of a director.
Andrew: Yeah. Yeah.
Mikey: And before Order of the Phoenix he had done mostly television for the past seven years. But I do think Warner Bros. did a great job deciding to keep him for the rest of the films because you can see how much he’s grown as a director in the film. This is a much, much better film, and I’m excited to see him and his Deathly Hallows, both Part I and Part II. I really am happy that he’s doing both of those. So the film you know I was worried about going into it, and I walked away satisfied. There’s a whole lot – we’ve kind of touched on – the Dursley’s not being in it, the whole battle at the very end with the Order of the Phoenix. There’s a lot of stuff missing, but I was still happy. I left it enjoying the film.
Matt’s Opinion of the Movie
Matt: Overall I – the first time I saw it I really, really enjoyed it. The second time, I think I enjoyed it even more. The third time, I think I still liked it.
Matt: I think…
Andrew: Show off. You’re showing off how many times you saw it.
Matt: Honestly though I think what I – what I was most pleased with, with what Laura said – the fact that the foreshadowing was – was great. I think – I think it made a big difference because they actually know what happened in the next book. This is the first movie where the series is actually over with, and they know what’s going to happen at the end so it’s easier to foreshadow what’s going to happen. So they know what to keep in.
Matt: I thought the acting was pretty much the best in all the previous films. Jim Broadbent was hilarious, and I even think Dan was even a lot more funnier in this film than he was before.
Andrew: More funny.
Matt: Yeah, sorry. Funnier.
Matt: Yes. But the pacing was really good, too. I think that’s why I didn’t get tired while I was watching it since it was a longer movie. But I thought the pacing was awesome.
Micah’s Opinion of the Movie
Micah: Yeah, I agree a lot with what’s been said already. I think there was good balance also, between the comedy and the action and the romance that was in there, I guess. It just did a great job compared to, I guess, Order of the Phoenix. But really all of the other movies that came before it. I thought, for me it was my favorite movie so far, and that’s really all I have to say. Everyone else made pretty good points.
The PG Rating
Andrew: Yeah. I won’t be redundant either. I basically echo everyone’s sentiments. Do you guys think – and we don’t have to spend much time on this because we’ve beaten it to death: the rating. Everyone was surprised when it got a PG rating. Do you think it deserved the PG rating? I’m going to go right out there and simply put yes, it deserved the PG rating because it was a lot of romance, and it really balanced out the darkness and made it very family friendly, I thought.
Laura: Yeah, and also there were some scenes they were very cautious with, with some of the violence. Particularly, the beginning with the bridge. You notice everybody managed to make it safely off the bridge.
Andrew: [laughs] Right.
Laura: And then, of course, there’s the whole thing with Draco where he’s – I mean he definitely bleeds, but I think – I don’t remember who brought up this point, but the spell cuts his skin but not his shirt…
Andrew: Oh, yeah.
Laura: …so you don’t actually see any of the wounds, you just see blood.
Laura: So they were very cautious with some of the violence, I think, this time around.
Andrew: I think it’s fair to say that was the most gory scene.
Andrew: Right? And it was pretty nasty, seeing the blood flow into the water.
Laura: Oh totally.
Scariest Scenes: Katie Bell and the Necklace
Andrew: What I – what I was going to ask though was what do you guys think was the most surprising – the most, I guess darkest, scariest scene? What was the most – what was the scariest scene?
Micah: Katie Bell.
Matt: That was pretty freaky…
Andrew: You think so?
Micah: That, or…
Laura: That really – I don’t know…
Micah: Or the Inferi.
Laura: When I saw that – when I saw the Katie Bell thing in the trailer, I thought it looked really weird. I thought it looked like something from The Grudge.
Laura: And I still thought that when I saw the movie. I was like, “What is this?”
Matt: Well, she’s cursed.
Matt: I mean, it’s not out of the ordinary for anybody.
Laura: But it wasn’t scary. It looked really fake.
Matt: Well, was she supposed to like turn her head 360 degrees and then start spitting pea soup?
Laura: No, but I mean just like the mouth thing – her mouth was just unnatural. I don’t know. It just looked very odd, I thought.
Andrew: I think – I agree, a couple of you guys said the – the Inferi. I think that was the most shocking and that was the scariest moment. Because you knew they were going to come out of the water, but you didn’t know when. You know – it’s that classic movie trick they do on you. And the funny thing about it in Half-Blood Prince was that you thought you knew when it was coming, but it was like a half second later than you expected.
Laura: Yeah. [laughs]
Andrew: So that’s really what shocked everyone. And it’s one of those moments where the entire theater shakes to life.
Matt: Oh, god. It was so fun to watch, too.
Matt: Especially if you knew it was coming.
Mikey: You’ve also got to remember the Inferi – we’re calling the Inferi the scariest part right here that would bump it to a PG-13 rating – that’s the same – the Inferi look very similar to – they’re not identical – but very similar to The Pirates of the Caribbean when they went through the moonlight. The same thing – it was very scary, dead type look. So, like…
Matt: You know, I was thinking actually, Mikey, the Inferi looked Sort of like the Dead Marshes from Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.
Mikey: Well that’s what I was thinking. But I’m comparing it – well, Lord of the Rings is not PG-13 – or PG. Is it?
Matt: Yeah, that’s right. No – it’s PG-13.
Mikey: But I’m comparing it to Pirates of the Caribbean, a Disney film that is PG.
Matt: It’s PG-13.
Mikey: Is Pirates of the Caribbean PG-13? I thought it was PG.
Matt: No, I think it’s PG-13.
Mikey: Oh, maybe I’m wrong. I’m probably wrong. Of course I am. I’m going to look it up. I could have sworn it was PG.
Micah: The only other thing would be Dumbledore’s death and that really wasn’t even graphic.
Andrew: It wasn’t gruesome. Yeah, yeah.
Laura: Yeah, I don’t know – I thought they played that down a bit from the book. I mean, in the book you have Dumbledore sort of laying there and this description of how he’s sort of at odd angles because clearly he’s broken several bones by falling. And there was blood trickling out of his mouth in the book and all this other stuff. But in the movie it was very clean, you know.
Matt: Yeah, well didn’t it say he looked like a rag doll?
Andrew: Yeah, it was just sad in my opinion.
David Heyman’s Reaction to the PG Rating
Micah: Andrew, didn’t you interview someone. I can’t remember who it was but they said they were shocked that the MPAA gave it a PG rating?
Andrew: Yeah, Heyman was. I mean, David Heyman the producer. He was pretty shocked when he was like, “What the hell is this?” So, but I get it now! It makes sense to me. And as corrupt as the MPAA are – it’s just, you know, parents rating movies – I think that it made sense. It was a very – it was a very happy film. At – at the same time it was a very sad and dark one. But I think the happiness really turned it into more of a family film – the love stuff, like I said earlier.
Micah: Yeah, well I think it could have got a PG-13 for some of the suggestive stuff that was done in those scenes as well.
Andrew: Oh, yeah definitely.
Andrew: I’m on the fence at this point.
Mikey: I was wrong about The Pirates of the Caribbean. It was PG-13, of course.
Andrew: How dare you, Mikey.
Mikey: I know, I know. I don’t do my homework before I come on the show.
Jim Broadbent as Horace Slughorn
Andrew: Okay, well, there – there were a couple new characters as well, that we should definitely talk about. Most notably, Jim Broadbent as Slughorn and Jessie Cave as Lavender Brown. Let’s start with Jim Broadbent. What did you guys think of Jimmy boy?
Laura: He was brilliant.
Matt: I love Jimmy.
Andrew: What were your favorite scenes with him?
Laura: Oh man. I really enjoyed the memory scenes with Tom Riddle.
Laura: Those were just awesome. [laughs]
Andrew: Yeah, I think overall those scenes – the memory scenes – were particularly my favorite. Jim Broadbent was awesome. And also the guy who played teenage Tom Riddle – he was fantastic!
Laura: He was so creepy! Oh my God.
Andrew: Yeah. And he was so smooth, and so elegant, and – oh it was awesome.
Mikey: So Voldemort.
Laura: I liked him better than Christian Coulson. Or whatever his name is.
Mikey: Me too.
Andrew: Yeah, that’s right. Christian Coulson is a joke compared to this guy.
Mikey: Uh huh.
Andrew: He was just creepier and he filled the role more. It was just – really pleasantly surprising seeing these new characters really stand out. Anything else to say about Jim Broadbent? Any other favorite scenes?
Matt: I think it was really funny at Aragog’s funeral.
Andrew: Yeah, that too. [laughs]
Micah: Was the story that he told about Lily – was that in the books or was that added into the film?
Laura: No – no it wasn’t – that was added.
Matt: No – that was added.
Micah: Because I like that story a lot.
Laura: Yeah, that was just another thing that I really thought was in keeping with the spirit of the story. I thought that was really well done.
Andrew: Yeah. Totally.
Laura: You know what I really liked about Jim Broadbent though is that when – when you look at him physically he’s not Scrimgeour. Or not Scrimgeour – excuse me – Slughorn. I’m sorry, too many ‘S’ names.
Andrew: Yeah, it’s okay.
Laura: He’s not Slughorn, but in character he is. He just nailed it.
Laura: He’s not Slughorn, but in character he is. He just nailed it.
Andrew and Matt: Yeah.
Andrew: And I think when the first photo of Slughorn came out, I remember people saying, “Well, he’s not – he’s not fat enough” or “He’s not plump enough.”
Matt: Well, that – that reminds me a lot of what they said about Imelda Staunton, too, when she played Umbridge.
Andrew: Yes. Yeah.
Matt: But they both nailed it.
MuggleCast 177 Transcript (continued)
Jessie Cave as Lavender Brown
Andrew: But hey, what are – I mean – yeah, yeah. It doesn’t – it doesn’t really matter. Okay, so what did you guys think of Jessie Cave? I thought she really stood out, too. She played Lavender Brown.
Laura: I thought she was great.
Matt: She was really good. She depicted the whole teenage angst-love relationship and like, high school.
Mikey: She was just the right amount of annoying.
Mikey: In the books Lavender annoyed me. In the movie she annoyed me, but she was just enough to where I didn’t hate her. It was like, “Okay, she’s annoying. She’s what I expected.”
Matt: But her face after they broke up was priceless. When they were in the Great Hall.
Laura: [laughs] Yeah, that was great.
Matt: “I’m gonna scratch your eyes out!” [makes cat noise]
[Laura and Andrew laugh]
Andrew: Yeah. Yeah. And my favorite was the hospital wing when – when Slughorn, Dumbledore and Snape are in there, too. And just seeing the three of them watching all this drama go on, I thought, was so funny.
Andrew: And they obviously have so many better things to be doing, but they’re sitting there watching that.
Matt: But Dumbledore had the best quote, too.
Matt: “Oh, to be young and to feel love’s keen sting.”
Andrew: Yeah. There are so many quotes from this movie that I love to quote now, like that and…
Madam Pomprey’s Cameo
Matt: Well, actually, while we’re still on the whole hospital wing scene, did you guys think of it as a really great little treat that we got to see Madam Pomfrey again?
Andrew: Oh, yeah. Yeah, that was – that was nice. She had a nice little cameo.
Matt: She didn’t say anything, but she was still there.
Andrew: It’s okay. She came back.
Laura: So they got this woman into full costume just so they could have one shot with her in it. [laughs]
Andrew: Hey, it’s all about detail.
Matt: And it was two shots, Laura.
Laura: Oh, okay. Sorry.
Micah: Yeah, she was in the wand scene at the end.
Matt: Yeah, the – the wand light vigil.
Laura: Oh, that’s right. That’s right. [laughs]
Michael Gambon as Dumbledore
Andrew: Okay, so they used her. They used her enough. Moving along, Michael Gambon. Now this has always been a big discussion point on our show.
Andrew: I personally – I hear Mikey’s groan, but I personally feel Michael Gambon redeemed himself in this film. He was fantastic!
Laura: He was really good.
Andrew: Now Mikey, let’s hear your problem.
Mikey: I won’t say he was fantastic, but he definitely improved.
Andrew: Okay, good.
Mikey: He definitely, definitely improved. I still don’t – I still didn’t feel the connection to him that I did in the books. I’ve said it before, when I got to Dumbledore’s death when I read the book, I threw the book across the room and I stopped reading for five minutes.
Mikey: For like five minutes and then I had to finish up.
Laura: I thought you were going to say five days.
Mikey: No, it was like five minutes. And then I got a drink of water afterwards – I was upset. It may have been Kool-Aid or something, who knows. But honestly, I didn’t feel the connection to Michael Gambon. He did improve a lot. Like again, going back to – his best film, I feel, was what people considered to be the worst one, which was Prisoner of Azkaban. Just because he’s kind of seedy like, “I don’t know what you’re doing,” even though he knew about the Time Turner and stuff like that. In Goblet of Fire it’s like, “Harry, did you put your…” – you know, that there. And then, again in Order of the Phoenix, just the amount of…
Mikey: I don’t know. He did a great job for this movie. He did a much better job and I think he did a good job for him, but I think he could have done a much better job. I don’t know, it’s just one of those things where I still wasn’t completely satisfied, but at the same time I don’t ever think I would be completely satisfied with Michael Gambon as Dumbledore and I don’t think they should change him at all.
Matt: I got to say the part that – what I liked most about Michael Gambon playing Dumbledore in this movie is that he got rid of the whole cranky Dumbledore.
Andrew: Yeah. It was a weak Dumbledore this time.
Matt: And – and do you guys honestly think it helped the fact that Dumbledore was gay?
Andrew: No. Okay, we could…
Matt: You don’t think so? No because that’s what I’ve been reading a lot on Twitter and stuff. It’s because they say that he – that he got a little more sensitive side.
Andrew: But it’s because of all the drama that was going on. Being gay or nigh doesn’t have to be more sensitive. I think that he, Michael Gambon knew – Okay, he hasn’t read the books, but Michael Gambon knew it was a much – it was – Dumbledore was struggling in this film. He was becoming weak because of his hand and he was about to die and he wanted to be careful with Harry. And also, I think the producers just told him, “This is a weak Dumbledore in this book.” And you see that so much in the book – poor, old weak Dumbledore. That was a big theme leading up to his death. And so that’s what I think happens. And, I’ll give my thoughts on Michael Gambon now, besides what I said before. I think the Harry and Dumbledore relationship and Mikey, I want to say this specifically to you – really made Michael Gambon stand out in this role, because he really connected with Harry. When he talked to Harry seriously he was very calm and collected. And that’s what redeemed Michael Gambon for me.
Mikey: No, like I said, he did much better. And it’s not that I didn’t like him. It’s just I don’t think he’s as good as – he’s not what Dumbledore could have been to me, you know what I mean? I had a much more stronger connection to Dumbledore while reading the books, and it’s just been downhill with Gambon. And honestly, in this movie I thought he was the best…
Andrew: I agree.
Mikey: …he’s ever been.
Mikey: Really, you know, he really has redeemed himself a lot. I just don’t think he’s great in it. And it’s one of those things where again – a perfect example is, “Harry, I need you to get this memory.” It’s – there was no connection. I didn’t feel there was a connection there. And what really is – Harry’s like, “Well, Dumbledore says I have to do it,” and it’s like – whereas before it’s like, he already – you really didn’t understand at that time why you…
Mikey: …needed that memory. Whereas – whereas in the book Dumbledore had laid it out on the table, and he said, “Harry, this is what’s going on, and you are the only person…”
Andrew: But that’s what…
Mikey: “…that can get this.”
Andrew: …that’s what kept people on the edge of their seats, I think, wondering why Dumbledore needed these memories so bad. And I think it was clear that Dumbledore didn’t really know, either. He said that.
Andrew: Dumbledore said, “I need to know what – what Slughorn really said. And it was a modified dream. It wasn’t real.”
Mikey: Yeah, I know. I agree…
Andrew: The memory.
Mikey: …but it’s just one of those things – Harry agreeing to Dumbledore. Especially how – again, I’m looking at the books and the movies, and how he was treated in the book before, you know, in Order of the Phoenix to Dumbledore, like, you know, it’s – there really wasn’t a strong apology, you know, at the end of the fifth book – at the end of the fifth movie. At the end of the fifth book…
Mikey: …there was a really great apology about what happened. But the end of the fifth movie, not so much. Sixth movie opening, not really an apology or anything, you know. You really don’t have anything like rebuilding that bridge that was lost in Order of the Phoenix. Which, in the book, there really was. So I think because of that, that’s why I’m not happy with Dumbledore. I’m not saying I didn’t like him. Like I said, I like this movie. I like it a lot more than, you know, Order of the Phoenix, and I’m glad David Yates is doing it, because I’m excited to see what he’s going to do for Deathly Hallows. Gambon on the other hand, I don’t think brought as much as he could have. But at the same time it might not all be him. He finally read the script which has a death, and that’s kind of like the end of his character…
Mikey: …and he’s read his character, you know?
Matt: …regardless of what he brought, I know that he brought two things, and that was two tears from Laura and me…
Matt: …in one scene.
Andrew: He gave you that.
Matt: When we – he made Laura and I bawl like little girls.
Mikey: I cried, too. I will admit.
Laura: Well, I didn’t bawl.
Matt: Yeah, you did.
Laura: You bawled.
Matt: Well, okay. Laura, just be…
[Andrew and Laura laugh]
Matt: …just bear with me here, please. [laughs]
Matt: Oh, this is…
Andrew: …he doesn’t want to sound like he was more of a girl than you were.
Matt: Yeah, and…
Andrew: Or, you were crying more – he was crying more than you were.
Andrew: Because we all know you’re a big cry baby.
Laura: I shed – no, I totally am.
Laura: No, I actually kind of am. No, I shed some tears. But I made sure because I was sitting next to Andrew…
Laura: …so I like only cried on the right side of my face. [laughs]
Andrew: You know, I understand…
Laura: So Andrew wouldn’t look over and laugh at me.
Andrew: Well, while we’re talking about this, the first time I saw it, I teared up when Slughorn – when we saw the real memory between Slughorn and teenage Riddle. Because that was – for me, it was like, oh my God, this is it, this is what’s setting up the final two and a half films…
Andrew: …we’re about to watch. That was the beginning of the end. And that’s the first time you hear the word Horcruxes, and it was pretty intense, I thought.
Laura: Yeah. No, I agree with you.
Andrew: Micah, did you cry at any point? I know you’re a bit of a cry baby, too.
Micah: Oh, yeah. I’m a big cry baby.
Andrew: No, but seriously be honest here. Did you shed any tears?
Micah: No, no, actually I didn’t. One scene though that would’ve gotten to me, it would have been the scene that – when Slughorn was telling the story about Lily.
Andrew: Yeah. Yeah, that was pretty sad.
Laura: Aw. And also when Harry was giving Dumbledore the potion.
Laura: That was…
Andrew: That moved me the second time, I must say.
Matt: That was a really good scene, and it really captured the chapter in the book, as well.
Andrew: Yeah, it did. It was very loyal to the chapter. Okay, Micah, do you want to talk about the next point?
Snape’s True Allegiance
Micah: Sure. Part of my problem with Half-Blood Prince, even though I really did like it a lot, was that I thought they made Snape’s true allegiance a little bit too obvious.
Micah: And I just wanted to know what you guys thought about that.
Andrew: Well, what in particular? What scene?
Micah: A lot of them.
Andrew: What stands out? Maybe when Snape tells Harry, “Shh.”
Matt: No, no, no, no, no. I think the biggest scene was when he was telling Dumbledore that he doesn’t want to do this anymore. “Don’t you think you ask too much?”
Laura: Yeah, that was…
Matt: “I don’t want to…”
Laura: …lifted straight out of Book 7, too.
Matt: That was a little obvious. Yeah. It was – yeah, exactly, it was – I mean, it was great that it was foreshadowing from the scene in Snape’s memory, but I think it may have just been a little bit too early for the audience.
Laura: Well, let’s remember, though, how many people didn’t know that Snape was good as of the end of Half-Blood Prince? Everybody knew. Everybody knew that Snape was going to turn out to be good.
Matt: But they loved to debate about it, because there was just as much evidence to point both ways, technically.
Laura: Technically, but most people kind of took the side that “No, Snape’s going to turn out to be good.” It wasn’t…
Matt: Well, of course.
Laura: But no, it wasn’t a shock that he turned out to be good. What was a shock was that he actually loved Harry’s mother, and I think that’s what they’re going to play up more in the next movie.
Laura: Or the movie after the next movie.
Micah: I guess the biggest thing – maybe it didn’t come from Snape, it came from Dumbledore, when he says, “Severus, please,” there was no – he wasn’t nervous at all, he wasn’t scared, it was almost like he was – we all know he was asking Snape to kill him, but I thought…
Matt: Yeah, and it looked like he was asking him to kill him, too.
Micah: Exactly. And that’s the thing, you didn’t walk away it saying, “Oh man, Snape just killed Dumbledore, and now there’s all this impending doom that’s about to come.”
Laura: Well, at the same…
Micah: And I guess we know that from reading the book, but…
Laura: Yeah. The thing is we’re looking at it as people who have read the books. I would be interested to speak to somebody who had never read them…
Laura: …because you could be looking at it in an entirely different perspective.
Andrew: Yeah, and you know, my family members – my mom, brother, and sister – they all went to see this and they – if I asked them a question like Snape’s allegiance, they wouldn’t have any idea what I was talking about, but they really enjoyed the film. And I think it connects so much, this film, because it’s so funny. There’s so many funny moments, but at the same time there’s dark stuff, so this really is a perfect film whether you’re a big Harry Potter fan or not, and I know that totally doesn’t relate to what we were just discussing, but…
Mikey: No, it does. My dad and my mom called me, and my dad never goes to see the Harry Potter films, but my mom somehow talked him into going to go see it, and my dad called me the next day super excited about it, and saying, “Oh, I’m sure you already saw it, blah blah blah blah blah…” But, he was just saying that, he was like – he even mentioned that Snape killed Dumbledore. He’s a bad guy. My dad thinks that.
Mikey: And I’m not going to ruin it for him if he sees the next movie. If he doesn’t see it, I’ll probably tell him if he asks. But, you know, it’s one of those things where – it’s for people who aren’t into the books like we are. It’s a great film. My parents loved it, my dad, who’s never seen – he may have seen some of the other ones while I’m watching them at – when I was at their house, but…
Mikey: …he even enjoyed the movie just coming into this as his first film.
Andrew: Yeah, it’s great to hear, it’s great to see non-Potter fans really enjoying it.
Micah: I was going to say, the only other thing I would add from the whole Snape thing was that – the end scene with Harry, when he’s telling Bellatrix to leave him alone – Snape could have easily captured Harry at that point and taken him with him. So, I just think – maybe I’m wrong, maybe the average moviegoer…
Laura: But it was the same in the book, too.
Matt: Yeah. But it was kind of anticlimatic when Snape goes, “I am the Half-Blood Prince.” It just – did it seem kind of out of place?
Laura: That’s what he – it’s what he said in the book, too.
Matt: No, but it wasn’t really though, he was kind of shouting at him too.
Micah: It really didn’t mean anything to the movie. I didn’t think, “Oh, you’re the Half-Blood Prince, what does that really mean?” It means nothing.
Laura: Well, I think the problem with that was they didn’t go into the whole thing about Snape being a half-blood and also the meaning of Prince, not necessarily that he was actually a prince…
Laura: …but that it was his mother’s maiden name.
Laura: They didn’t explain any of that.
Matt: They didn’t go into any of that.
Micah: And the whole Lily backstory, too…
Matt: Yeah, and he didn’t really seem very sensitive when he called him coward in the movie either, because he didn’t say, “Don’t call me coward!”
Micah: That was a – exactly, I was really pissed they left it out.
Andrew: Me too, me too.
Matt: Yeah. They left it wide open twice!
Andrew: Yeah. Very strange, I mean, they would not have – obviously, it would not have been hard to include those lines, so, I don’t know. Good question for Heyman or the director, David Yates. But go on, Micah!
Micah: Did you guys feel that there was too much information left out as far as Horcruxes were concerned? There was no memory going back to Hepzibah Smith, where he would have learned about the cup. There really wasn’t a whole lot of back story on the ring, you got maybe about 30 seconds seeing it. And there was no shot of the diadem in the Room of Requirement. So…
Matt: Mhm. There’s also no – there’s no indication of the locket, too, from Order of the Phoenix.
Micah: Right, they never included that back in Movie 5.
Laura: Well they – yeah, they didn’t. But I don’t know, I feel like this is going to be one of those things, since the Deathly Hallows film is going to be so long – you know how they were lifting stuff from Book 7 and putting it in this movie in terms of foreshadowing? I think they’ll probably lift some of the Horcrux stuff and put it into seven. Just so that the story…
Mikey: That makes a lot more sense.
Laura: Yeah. Just so that the story kind of goes together, because the Horcrux thing is very complicated if you think about it. And if you think about the average moviegoer, they might get confused if you explain too much about it in Movie 6 and then just jump into it in Movie 7 with no explanation.
Micah: Yeah, but the biggest problem is, there isn’t even any hypothesizing from Dumbledore as to what he thought the Horcruxes were. So how does Harry even – and I know they can write this in easily, but something like Nagini…
Micah: …was something that was suggested by Dumbledore to Harry, and also that some of the items may come from other heads of House. That – you know what I’m saying?
Micah: There wasn’t that dialogue between the two of them.
Laura: Right. Well, there also is that part at the beginning of Deathly Hallows where the trio receive things from Dumbledore, and it could just be easily sort of explained away in a letter or something along those lines, I’m sure.
Andrew: Yeah, I – I’ve been saying – I have a similar opinion of – like Laura’s. I think they’re just going to write in one or two extra lines to set up whatever they missed in the past films, and that will be that. Really quick stuff. They can – they’re smart, they can…
Laura: They don’t have a choice anymore.
Andrew: [laughs] Right.
Micah: No, they don’t.
Laura: They have to.
Matt: There is no next movie.
Andrew: Yeah, true.
Mikey: They did it just like Laura said, to make – again, like I said about my dad seeing this movie. It’s – you know they need each film to stand up on their own, and if they explain way too much in this film about Horcruxes – which this film was a lot – the book was a lot about Horcruxes – if they didn’t put it in that next film, people coming to it for the first time – second time may not remember, may not follow along. We will, but the average moviegoer won’t.
Micah: So, we just talked a little about it, but do you think that aside from the Horcrux stuff that they set up Deathly Hallows well enough?
Andrew: I think they did. I mean, they really leave the movie open. I think this movie was the one – was one in particular where they leave it really open-ended at the end. It doesn’t end on a happy moment. You know, not everyone’s – nobody’s giving Hagrid a standing ovation. Nothing cheesy where Harry and Hermione are flying on Buckbeak. You know, stupid stuff like that. They just left…
Laura: Ah huh.
Andrew: I mean, while cute, it was stupid. You know, they just let it – they just let it go. They left it wide open.
Matt: Well, I think…
Andrew: There’s Laura.
Matt: Sorry, go ahead Laura. I was going to talk to Micah.
Laura: What I liked about the end of it – they ended it was, I remember a quote from J.K. Rowling when Half-Blood Prince was published, and she said that to her Half-Blood Prince and Deathly Hallows felt like two halves of the same novel.
Laura: And that’s the whole impression that I got of this movie, that it was kind of like the first Lord of the Rings film where it just sort of left off, and you knew there was more story there, you know? It wasn’t complete yet, and that’s what I really liked about it.
Andrew: Yeah! That’s what I thought too. It really felt like a part one. This is the real part one of Deathly Hallows.
Matt: Yeah, I really agree with Laura on this. It seemed to me like – I know Mikey’s going to like this – but it was like The Empire Strikes Back…
Mikey: Yeah! [laughs]
Matt: …of the Harry Potter films. It was – it definitely left off to where pretty much they got – the biggest blow they could possibly get was Dumbledore’s death, and now they have to act from there.
Listener Tweet: Nice Suit, Draco
Andrew: Let’s move on to our listener tweets to wrap up our Half-Blood Prince discussion. On our Twitter, which is at twitter.com/MuggleCast, we asked you guys to send in your thoughts about the film, and here’s some of them. KaleCal writes:
“Do you think when Voldemort gave Draco the mission, he also gave him his suit from ‘Order of the Phoenix’? Seriously Draco…”
[Laura and Matt laugh]
Andrew: “…wear your school robes.” That’s a good point, I didn’t notice that before. Draco and Voldemort wearing the same thing in – when Voldemort’s in the train station, [laughs] and when Draco’s on the train.
Laura: Ah, that’s funny. [laughs]
Listener Tweet: Dumbledore’s Funeral
Andrew: That is funny. Maybe they’re trying to make him look similar, to make him look just as eerie, or – I don’t know. Maybe it’s a David Yates touch. Next feedback:
Acelovesyou says: “‘Half-Blood Prince’ was second only to ‘Prisoner of Azkaban’, and only because I was sad they cut out Dumbledore’s funeral.”
Were you guys sad they cut out Dumbledore’s funeral?
Laura: When I heard about it originally I was not happy, but in the context of the film I was fine with it.
Andrew: Yeah, they still paid tribute.
Andrew: And it was a touching tribute.
Micah: They could have shown the white tomb though, I felt, because it’s going to play a role in the next film.
Andrew: Yeah, instead of him – his straight-up dead body just laying there. I mean, they could’ve shown both, his dead – you know, when his body’s on the ground?
Listener Tweet: Harry Hiding Underneath
Andrew: Maybe instead of the wands all being raised into the air for that, they could’ve done it for the white tomb. But, whatever, next tweet is from AngelaKH522:
“Having Harry just wait below the tower fully mobile made no sense. Why did they veer from the book?”
What did you guys think about that, when you – when Harry was on the lower level of the tower so he looked up and saw Dumbledore?
Laura: I think they filmed the first part – like, they filmed all these scenes and realized, “Oh crap, we didn’t have Harry carry the invisibility cloak!”
Laura: No, I’m just kidding. I don’t know.
Mikey: Yeah, I think that if they put Harry under the invisibility cloak again, with Petrificus Totalus, all frozen there also, again, it would’ve been too much for the movie. To the point where, you say now, “Why is Harry always getting – why is Harry always hiding under here?” It would’ve made Harry’s character seem weaker than he is.
Micah: Yeah, they already used their one opportunity.
Mikey: Yeah. They used it once, and I think – but using it again – it would be an over-use of that. Again, the movie is not the book, and they showcase all different sorts of magic. And I think by Dumbledore saying, “You have to follow my orders, I want you do this,” I think it kind of shows Harry’s character.
Mikey: You know? It shows Harry’s character as a – following what Dumbledore asked.
Micah: I agree, I felt that’s the reason why they could get away with it, was because they have that whole scene in with Harry and Dumbledore and Dumbledore told him, what Mikey just said.
Micah: Basically, “You’re going to do what I tell you to do.”
Andrew: Yeah, and I think it was also symbolic how Harry was looking at – up at Dumbledore, and Dumbledore was above him, and the same thing, how “you’re going to listen to what I say.” And I thought it was kind of touching, seeing Harry looking up at him and Dumbledore looks down real quick.
Matt: One last look before he falls 5000 feet.
Laura: Before he becomes a new…
Andrew: Astronomy Tower of Terror.
Laura: [laughs] …a new ride at Universal Studios.
Some More Listener Tweets
Andrew: [laughs] Okay, a couple more tweets, RossTurner32 says:
“Awesome movie, not sure if it was the best, I thought it still deserved PG-13.”
Olivander110 said, “Loved Half-Blood Prince, wish you would’ve seen the diadem in the Room of Requirement but love the changes, the Quidditch, and Slughorn and Lavender,”
Kathleen91 says, “I loved ‘Half-Blood Prince,’ but I think there needed to be more about the Horcruxes.”
And we talked about that earlier.
XMegan218 says, “I was sad that they didn’t include the ‘I’m not scared Harry, I’m with you’ line in the cave scene.”
That was a big one they cut out.
Laura: Yeah. I was sad about that too.
Matt: But where would they put that? I mean, it was kind of…
Laura: Oh, they could’ve easily…
Mikey: It would’ve fit.
Laura: Yeah, they could’ve easily could’ve just had Harry holding Dumbledore saying, “Don’t worry sir, don’t worry.”
Laura: You know, something like that.
Andrew: Yeah, exactly.
Quick Discussion on Quidditch
Micah: We didn’t really talk about Quidditch at all.
Laura: Quidditch was awesome.
Andrew: Yeah. Quidditch – it was gorgeous. I cannot wait to see that in Blu-ray. Oh my god, the special effects in this movie, wow. Wow, wow, wow.
Micah: There was a lot of suggestive material at certain times.
Andrew: Yes there were.
Micah: Quidditch tryouts.
Andrew: Yes there were. I mean, it’s – they’re growing up. I mean, that’s how it would be in Hogwarts. [laughs] I mean, maybe Jo didn’t write it, but you know it’s happening there. [laughs] Cormac McLaggen, that guy, he’s a stud.
Andrew: He’s got a hit on the hotties up there like Hermione.
Laura: He’s an underwear model, from what I understand.
Listener Tweet: No Battle?
Andrew: [laughs] Yes he is. Yeah, what’s his real name? Oh, Freddie, Freddie Stroma. And if you guys like Cormac McLaggen in the film, or the guy who plays Cormac McLaggen, Freddie Stroma, search for him on YouTube. He does this underwear dance for God knows what. But, yeah, just watch it, you’ll love him even more.
JenBonstein says, “Loved it, but no big battle in the end? They just walk into the forest? WTF? I wish there was some battle.”
Were you guys disappointed there was no battle?
Mikey: I was.
Matt: Well – didn’t we – we kind of knew about this for a while, so…
Matt: …it’s not like it was a big shock…
Some More Listener Tweets
Andrew: Yeah. They said they didn’t want it to be too repetitive with Movie 7. Ikapoo says – Ikapoo, however you pronounce that says:
“Love the mood of the film, great cinematography, some of the night scenes were beautiful. Great acting, especially from Rickman,”
Zoedear says, “The film was sexed up and dumbed down version of the book, but funny,”
JLminsky says, “I thought it was great until Snape shushed Harry on the Astronomy Tower.”
But, I mean, what do you think the deal was with that? Guys?
Mikey: I think – you know what it was? I think it’s one of those things where – it also put in light that Harry trusts Snape, and he trusts what Snape was about to do. And then, obviously in the end Harry says, “WTF what was that?” and runs after him.
Mikey: But I think it’s one of those things where he trusts Snape at that moment in time.
Matt: Well, yeah. He never really ever thought that Snape was a bad guy except in the first movie, but then it turned out that he was actually trying to save him. There is a little bit of trust when it comes to him, and I guess Dumbledore…
Mikey: And it’s just one of those things where it shoes – it’s also to show the fact that Snape goes from telling Harry to hang out, “I’m going to take care of this,” to end up killing Dumbledore. I think it’s supposed to be a bigger shocker for Snape’s character, and again, for the people that haven’t read the books. It’s a perspective thing you have to think about.
Listener Tweet: The Unbreakable Vow
Andrew: And a final tweet today from MattOdd.
He says, “I loved it! The Unbreakable Vow was brilliant and perfect, the story moved smoothly, and we saw the characters in a different light.”
I agree. The Unbreakable Vow was very cool.
Laura: It was very, very well done.
Andrew: Bellatrix was spot-on. Snape was spot-on. Narcissa was spot-on. So, wonderful. So look, that concludes our Half-Blood Prince discussion for today. I’m sure there will be much more, but this segment lasted a lot longer than we planned, which was great. We had some other segments planned for today’s show, but we will leave them for sometime next week because we want to put out another episode sometime next week to celebrate our four year anniversary, which is on August 7.
Andrew: Yeah. So, we’ll save the other stuff for next week, and we’ll just wrap up the show today! All right! This doesn’t happen very often, where…
Micah: Well, I hope we wrap up the show today.
Micah: I wasn’t planning on recording for another three hours.
Andrew: Oh, Micah. Silly you.
[Show music begins]
Andrew: Okay, well before we let you guys go, let’s remind you of all about our contact information: Visit the MuggleCast website for all you need concerning the show. You can call in a voice-mail, you can Skype in a voice-mail, and you can e-mail in your feedback. These days we really rely on your e-mail to read on the show, as you saw today. We read e-mails, and we read tweets too. Speaking of tweets, the MuggleCast Twitter is one of the highlights of the MuggleCast community. You can follow us on Twitter by going to Twitter.com/MuggleCast. You can also fan us on Facebook and subscribe to us on iTunes, don’t forget. And also, vote for us once a month on Podcast Alley. I think now – let me just look into something real quick. Can you go to – yes, you can now go to Facebook.com/MuggleCast. You’ve got a nice, handy URL now to be a fan of the show. So we have close to 7,000 fans there on Facebook, and you can become a fan just by going to Facebook.com/MuggleCast. We also have other community outlets: We’ve got our MySpace, YouTube, Frappr, Last.FM, and the fanlisting and the forums over on MugglecastFan.net. So that’s it.
Laura: Oh, wait, wait, wait.
Andrew: It’s been a lot of fun. What?
Laura: We have a new P.O. Box number, too.
Andrew: Oh, we have a new P.O. Box number, too. Laura, give it to us.
Laura: That’s P.O. Box 1752 Cumming, GA, 30028.
Andrew: You can send in handwritten mail, or you can send Laura treats like home-baked goods or whatever you want to the wonderful town of Cumming, Georgia.
Andrew: All right, well thanks everyone for listening. I’m Andrew Sims.
Laura: I’m Laura Thompson.
Micah: I’m Micah Tannenbaum.
Matt: I’m Matt Britton.
Mikey: And I’m Mikey B!
Andrew: We’ll see you next week for Episode 178 to celebrate our four year anniversary. Buh-bye!
[Show music continues]