Transcript #239

MuggleCast 239 Transcript

Show Intro

[“Hedwig’s Theme” plays]

Micah: Because we can’t figure out who NightSpell314 is, this is MuggleCast Episode 239 for September 19th, 2011.

[Show music begins]

Andrew: This week’s episode of MuggleCast is brought to you by, the Internet’s leading provider of audiobooks, with more than 75,000 downloadable titles across all types of literature, including fiction, non-fiction, and periodicals. For a free audiobook of your choice, go to

[Show music continues]

Andrew: Welcome to MuggleCast Episode 239! It’s a new school year.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: The summer is over, ladies and gentlemen, and for once there is no new Potter film to look forward to at the end of the school year. Awww.

Eric: Wow.

Andrew: Or in the middle of it. Awww.

Matt: Forever.

Eric: You’re just the bearer of good news, aren’t you?

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: What else is going wrong [laughs] this fall?

Andrew: Well, we used to – I think we used to do some kind of summer-ish segments or…

Eric: Maybe.

Andrew: Maybe not. But I know people – surely, people listen more often to MuggleCast in the summers because they have more time, because the majority of our listeners are in school, I would say.

Matt: Mhm. So, we’re in that elementary school.

Eric: Well, there’s never been a better time to re-listen to old episodes of MuggleCast.

Andrew: [laughs] That’s right.

Eric: Well, I mean, while you’re on the bus and stuff now, so that’s cool.

Andrew: Yeah, absolutely. I used to listen to a podcast every Monday morning on the bus on the way in, and it was really nice!

Eric: Cool.

Andrew: Mhm. Anyway, Matt, Eric, Micah, and I are here this week. We got some Pottermore to talk about. We have a lot of e-mails we have been meaning to catch up on, so we’re going to get to those. Also, we got a Favorites segment, and the news, of course. I’m Andrew Sims from

Eric: I’m Eric Scull from

Micah: I’m Micah Tannenbaum from

Matt: And I’m Matthew Britton from The Huffington Post.

[Everyone laughs]

Announcement: MuggleNet and MuggleCast Updates

Andrew: Okay. Well, first of all, there’s business to attend to. A lot of us have been shuffling around, you see. I was going to talk about Hypable, but I think the bigger news here is that Matt and Micah are at much bigger news outlets.

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Matt: We’re better than you, see.

Andrew: Yeah.

Matt: So, how’s that?

[Andrew laughs]

Micah: We didn’t even announce that, we just moved.

Andrew: No.

Eric: Huffington, MSNBC, really? Wow.

Matt: Yeah. We didn’t post anything on anything.

Andrew: You didn’t get a goodbye post. At least I got that. [laughs]

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: So anyway, there is some business to attend to. If you do – and you doesn’t? – visit MuggleNet, you’ll know that about a week or two – a couple of weeks ago now, I made an announcement that – shockingly. I still can’t believe it – I’m no longer a staff member of MuggleNet, and I’m working on my own entertainment site now, Hypable, as you’ve heard on the show before and probably on MuggleNet. But the good news is – concerning this podcast is that this podcast is still living on. MuggleCast has been around forever, as everybody knows, and Micah, Eric, and I have all been very big parts of it for a very long time. So, it is not changing, but we are – so there’s not really much to say in terms of the podcast, not much is changing, but we do want to let you know that we are going to make a couple of changes to the MuggleCast Twitter account.

Eric: And site. And site, in general.

Andrew: And the MuggleCast site. Right. MuggleCast is kind of going to exist on its own server. It’s kind of a technical thing that you won’t even really notice because you’ll still be going to and you’re still going to see the same site. So, a lot is the same, and we’ll update you as changes are made, but that’s what’s going on.

Eric: Woot.

Andrew: So…

Matt: I feel like our parents are divorcing or something.

[Andrew laughs]

Matt: Like your life is not going to be changed by this, just…

[Andrew laughs]

Matt: We still love you.

Andrew: The listeners are the children.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: Don’t worry, children, nothing is changing.

Eric: Nah, I think my parents’ divorce is probably one of the best things that they did, so…

Andrew: Oh. [laughs] Well, in that case…

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: …I guess this is great! So, that’s what’s happening with that. And, like I said, with the website, you won’t notice too many changes but it will be moving. It’s going to be more of a behind-the-scenes change, but with the MuggleCast Twitter, we’re going to start tweeting news from MuggleNet and Hypable, Harry Potter news. And it’s going to be news that we’re going to be discussing here on the show. And speaking of the news, Micah, what is in the news? Now that you anchor from MSNBC, I imagine the news has gotten much better quality wise.

Micah: Absolutely. [laughs]

Eric: Yeah, do you do the news or do you just do, like, the Dateline: To Catch a Predator stuff?

Micah: Both.

Eric: Oh. So…

Micah: I moonlight a little bit.

Eric: Are you going to ask me to have a seat?

Micah: No, no, you’re – do I need to ask you to have a seat, I guess is the better question.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Yeah, those are words you’re never going to want to be asked.

Eric: Never mind.

News: Deathly Hallows – Part 2 Box Office Update

Micah: But anyway, in the last few weeks since we’ve done the show, Deathly Hallows – Part 2 eclipsed the $1.3 billion mark worldwide, and it’s the third movie ever to reach that milestone, and it’s closing in on $1 billion internationally. Obviously, here in the United States, it still doesn’t rank that high. It’s somewhere in the top 15 in terms of domestic gross, but it just keeps moving up the charts.

Andrew: But it’s at number three now, and it’s not going to pass Avatar and Titanic, so it’s just going to stay at number three, and that will be that.

Micah: Unless we all go to the movie theater right now.

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Micah: Although I don’t even know how many theaters it’s still in, at this point.

Andrew: And Titanic is going back into theaters, Avatar is going back into theaters – or did it already? I mean, there’s no stopping James Cameron.

Matt: No, Avatar already did a re-release in theaters.

Andrew: Oh, okay. But I don’t know if that’s going to count towards Titanic‘s total, but…

Matt: Titanic did re-releases and they’re also doing another re-release in 3D.

Eric: No kidding.

Andrew: Right, that’s what I mean.

Matt: So…

Eric: Well, I bet…

Matt: I mean, how many re-releases are we talking about?

Eric: Well, my theory is that Lion King is going to come back and just eclipse them all for the number one spot. That came out – is that this week or next week that’s coming out in 3D?

Andrew: This week.

Matt: This Friday.

Eric: That’s going to be awesome, man, Lion King in 3D.

Matt: I hear it’s not that stellar.

Eric: Oh.

Matt: I’ve been hearing some…

Andrew: The 3D is not that good.

Matt: Yeah, the 3D…

Eric: Oh. Why would they…

Matt: …conversion isn’t that good.

Eric: That’s a real shame to hear.

Andrew: But on MuggleCast 400, we’ll be talking about the Deathly Hallows re-release.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: So, look forward to that.

Eric: Cool. [laughs] I’m counting the days, Andrew!

[Andrew and Matt laugh]

Matt: That’s the next thing to look for.

Andrew: All right. Before we move on with today’s show, we’d like to remind you that today’s podcast is brought to you by, the Internet’s leading provider of audiobooks, with more than 75,000 downloadable titles across all types of literature and featuring audio versions of many New York Times Bestsellers. For listeners of this podcast, Audible is offering a free audiobook to give you a chance to try out their great service. One audiobook to consider is The Night Circus, a book just released by Erin Morgenstern. Publishers Weekly calls it “a giant, magical story destined for bestsellerdom.” I actually just started listening to it and I can tell you, I agree completely. And actually this book has two connections to Potter: for one, Jim Dale is the narrator of the audiobook. He narrates the US version of the Harry Potter books, and two, David Heyman who has produced the Potter films is reportedly very interested in turning this book into a film. So, to get a free audiobook of your choice such as The Night Circus, which I do really recommend, go to Again, that’s

News: Deathly Hallows – Part 2 Deleted Scenes Revealed

Micah: Well, the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 DVD, which is supposed to come out I think sometime in the middle of November – the British Board of Film Classification updated their site with a listing of what deleted scenes we can expect to see when it is released, and did any of these jump out at you? I’ll just go through them real fast. “Shell Cottage,” not very descriptive. “Harry and Luna at Dobby’s grave on the Beach.”

Eric: Slightly…

Micah: “The Hog’s Head.”

Eric: …more descriptive. [laughs]

Micah: Yeah, so is “The Hog’s Head,” so maybe there was just a little bit of extended discussion between Harry and Aberforth. “Marble Staircase with Harry and Ginny,” “Wooden Bridge,” “Hogwarts Battlements,” “Slytherin Dungeons” – and I think that’s actually one that you saw in some of the trailers, right? With Filch…

Matt: Mhm. Yeah.

Micah: …and there was that explosion that took place behind him. That never made it into the movie. And then the final one, “Marble Staircase with Ron and Hermione.”

Andrew: [sighs] These aren’t good.

Eric: Exciting?

Andrew: I’ve heard some talk – isn’t somebody else – aren’t there other scenes that were apparently cut? How about the “Why do you live? Because I have something to live for”? Where is that on the DVD? Or does that count as part of the battlements?

Eric: Maybe. Maybe not.

Andrew: I’m just – this seems…

Eric: Do you feel like – well, do you get the feeling that they’re withholding for the sake of withholding so that ten years later, they have a better, more definitive deleted scenes?

Andrew: Yeah…

Eric: Because we know they do that on other films. But…

Matt: Well, I mean, would you rather have bad deleted scenes or would you have really good deleted scenes that you wish were in the movie?

Eric: That’s true. Well, I mean, we have the reason for them to not include the “Why do you live? Because I have something to live for.”

Matt: Because it was dumb.

Eric: The real problem is that – that it ever made it into the trailer and that the trailer people ran with it, and that scream and everything else that the trailer people did to get us excited for this. But that deleted scene, they just didn’t like it after they filmed, right? They didn’t think it would be entirely appropriate, so they cut it. And yeah, we know it exists and it’s not even in the deleted scenes, but I just think it’s for a good reason, right? I mean, that’s just something that they didn’t think would – maybe they’re embarrassed that they filmed it.

Andrew: I think they’re saving some stuff for the Ultimate Edition, perhaps?

Eric: Hmm.

Andrew: Which may be coming out at the same time, but there hasn’t really been – there’s been some news about the Part 1 Ultimate Edition, but not the Part 2 Ultimate Edition. But they’ve been releasing each Ultimate Edition in groups of two, so they did “1” and “2”, “3” and “4”, “5” and “6”. So, presumably they would do “7” and “8” at the same time, too, and maybe they’ll save it – I know a couple of people were saying that Arthur and Will, two actors in the Deathly Hallows epilogue – they said they were going to put the first epilogue in the deleted scenes, is that right, Micah?

Micah: Yeah, they talked about it when we spoke with them – was it last episode? Or two episodes ago? Because they had done the initial filming of the epilogue and then they scrapped it.

Andrew: Because it was horrendous.

Micah: Yeah, it was… [laughs]

Andrew: Apparently.

Micah: It didn’t end up working out too well, so they shot it at Leavesden. So, one of the characters that they talked about, Teddy Lupin, who I think a lot of people were looking forward to seeing in the epilogue, was in the initial one that they shot but then wasn’t in the one that they ended up using in the movie. So, maybe that’s Ultimate Edition material, who knows.

Matt: Mhm.

Eric: Yeah, I think many times with these deleted scenes, too – some of them – I think it depends on the director of the studio, too, because you’ll see on certain deleted scenes of DVDs and now Blu-rays, there may be like a five-second clip – you know, some DVDs for some movies will have these really short extended scenes, I guess they even call them, that really are kind of pointless but some people feel like maybe the viewers would want to see that. And then others, maybe with these Harry Potter‘s, they’re having sort of more substantial scenes. So, even if we did get a view of Teddy Lupin in the original epilogue, it may just be a view, a shot, and because we don’t have the epilogue, the scenes surrounding that version of the epilogue, they’re never going to release it just because it wouldn’t fit. It would be, like, five seconds of, “Oh, that’s supposed to be Teddy,” but unless it’s in the original scene they’re not going to show it.

Andrew: It could also just be a special feature, like a featurette, like “The Original Epilogue,” and then we’ll see clips from the original epilogue.

Eric: Ooh.

Andrew: And then maybe the crew will talk about why it didn’t work, and what issues they were running into, because I remember around press time for it they did have a lot to say about it, just about how – actually, [laughs] everybody could not stop talking about how awful it was. I remember Dan Radcliffe saying that it was just so noisy because they were actually filming at King’s Cross, some of the costumes were off, Rupert was saying he looked half bald, and some of you probably saw the paparazzi photos. So, overall it was just kind of like a mess of a shoot, and I could see them doing a whole featurette out of that.

News: First Look at Deathly Hallows – Part 1 Ultimate Edition

Micah: Well, speaking of featurettes on Ultimate Editions – nice segue there, Andrew.

Andrew: Oh.

[Matt laughs]

Micah: There was a little bit of a clip released for the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 Ultimate Edition. It’s part of “Creating the World of Harry Potter” and it was released through Harry Potter: The Quest, that online interactive game that fans can participate in. And it just gave a look at the first press conference that the trio did, and it was with Chris Columbus and David Heyman as well. And it was interesting how Chris Columbus asked the media to really stay away from these kids and that this was really [laughs] the only time that they were going to be available to speak with the press.

Andrew: [in a sentimental voice] They’ve changed so much!

[Eric and Matt laugh]

Andrew: They – it was a nice clip and that’s why I like the Ultimate Edition documentaries, we’ve talked about them before. Basically, it’s one giant eight-hour documentary, and you get one hour of the documentary on each Ultimate Edition set so you have to buy them to get the whole documentary, and – yeah, so the “Growing Up Potter” will be on number seven, like you said, and it’s nice. It’s touching. And now, Part 8 is supposed to be about the fandom or something, so I don’t know if they’re going to be talking about the fan sites, but they didn’t interview anyone so [laughs] I’m kind of guessing not.

[Eric and Matt laugh]

Andrew: They didn’t reach out to MuggleNet, so…

Micah: It’ll all be on…

Matt: Pottermore.

Micah: …the ninth Ultimate Edition, which will never make it out of the cutting room floor.

Andrew: Well, no, because then they’re going to be moving into the super-mega-foxy-awesome edition.

Eric: Wow.

Andrew: Yeah, which they’re actually saving the real deleted scenes for.

Eric: I really would like…

Andrew: And the bloopers.

Eric: Can I put that on layaway now?

Andrew: [laughs] Yes…

Eric: Reserve it?

Andrew: …on Amazon.

Eric: [laughs] Super-freaky-awesome – what was it?

Andrew: Mega-foxy.

Eric: Mega.

Andrew: I think that’s a StarKid reference. I may be wrong.

Eric: Ooh, okay.

Andrew: Yeah…

Micah: All right.

Andrew: …so I threw that in there. [laughs]

News: Deathly Hallows – Part 2 Nominated for 14 Scream Awards

Micah: Well, the final bit of…

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Micah:Deathly Hallows – Part 2 news – and these awards aren’t that big, but Potter usually gets nominated at them every year – the Scream Awards.

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: Ooh.

Micah: Deathly Hallows – Part 2 picked up fourteen nominations, so…

Eric: Interestingly, they were all… [imitates Voldemort’s scream in the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 trailer]

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: The Scream Awards, get it? Scream. Scream Awards.

Andrew: I get it.

Eric: Because he screamed like fourteen times in that trailer.

Andrew: He did.

Matt: He did.

Micah: So I would think they’ll probably win at least one [laughs] at this award show. What’s interesting is in a lot of categories, I noticed they’re up against Game of Thrones, which is a new popular series from HBO. So, it’ll be interesting to see…

Andrew: Yeah, very popular.

Micah: …how they can do against them.

Matt: I love Game of Thrones.

[Prolonged silence]

Matt: Sorry.

Micah: No, you’re allowed to speak. You’re allowed to say that. [laughs]

Matt: Oh okay, yeah.

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Micah: No, you can’t talk. What?

Eric: No, no, Game of Thrones is awesome. I think we all watch Game of Thrones, actually.

Andrew: What else is going on in the news?

News: Harry Potter Page to Screen Release Date Announced

Micah: All right, final bit of news, the follow-up to Harry Potter Film Wizardry which is called Harry Potter Page to Screen is going to be released on October 25th. It’s essentially a massive encyclopedia of the Harry Potter films and much different from what people got in Film Wizardry. It’s a little expensive, $75 is probably steep for some people, but you know, Christmas is right around the corner.

Andrew: Mhm.

Micah: And I think we’re at least giving away one copy on MuggleCast, so stay tuned in terms of I guess how we’re going to figure out what the rules are for giving it away. But we’ll give away one copy on the show.

Andrew: The first one was really good, Film Wizardry, and this is – I mean, this one better be all new material. It better not be the same stuff.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: I mean, that’s kind of the impression you get, considering the covers kind of look similar and they call it a follow-up, which kind of makes me feel like it’s an expanded edition or something. But…

Matt: For 75 bucks, it better be.

Andrew: Well, the first one was really big, too, and I think this one will be as well. The first one was really good, so hopefully Page to Screen will be just as interesting.

Eric: Cool.

Andrew: And new material.

Eric: Yeah, right? Well, I mean, I think the good thing about bookstores is you can go in and open up the book before you buy it, right?

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: So that helps.

Matt: Mhm.

Eric: And I mean, even Amazon will have a digital look inside, but still in terms of – because these are heavy books, the weight, and the way it’s packaged. You’ll see that by just walking into your local bookshop.

Matt: Mhm. Just not Borders.

Eric: Aww.

[Micah laughs]

News: JK Rowling Among the Many Celebrities in Phone-Hacking Scandal

Andrew: One other story I wanted to bring up, this is kind of a more serious story, JK Rowling was named one of the celebrities in the British phone-hacking probe, which has been going on since July. I know everybody in England knows all about it. In case people in the US don’t, basically what happened was Rupert Murdoch’s company, News Corp., who owned News of the Word – it was uncovered that they were tapping phone lines and spying on private phone conversations of the families of dead military members, people in political positions, and also celebrities. And JK Rowling may be one of those people who News of the World were tapping in on, and so she was listed as a “core participant,” which means that she may have suffered – she may have been listened in on. Now, you can imagine why News of the World would be tapping in on JK Rowling. I mean, she’s a very high-profile celebrity.

Eric: Right.

Andrew: Maybe at one point they were trying to get some book scoops, stuff like that. So JK Rowling has the choice, she can come forward and say, “Yes, me,”ù or, “A lawyer will represent me and speak on my behalf.”ù But as far as we know right now, it’s just a possibility and chances are, we’re not going to find out details of the exact phone conversations they were tapping in on. But it’s a big scandal over there.

Matt: Mhm.

Andrew: I was actually over in London when it first broke, and oh my God, it was everywhere. The news was just – everybody was in shock. Yeah, so…

Eric: Yeah, that’s interesting.

Main Discussion: Pottermore

Andrew: …we’ll let you know what happens from there. Well, speaking of JK Rowling, she’s very busy working on Pottermore and that’s actually something else we’re going to discuss today as kind of a news item but also as a general discussion. I think everybody here is in Pottermore now, right?

Eric: [sighs] Yes.

Matt: Yes.

Eric: As of our last episode, that was not the case. I know Micah was very vocally waiting for his letter. And a couple of days later, he got it! So that’s awesome.

Andrew: So…

Matt: Might as well talk.

Andrew: So what houses are you guys in? I don’t think any of you were in it last time, right?

Micah: No.

Eric: Matt, are you in?

Matt: I was in, yeah.

Andrew: But were you on the last episode?

Matt: How long ago was I on the last episode?

Andrew: It was like three weeks ago.

Matt: Yeah.

Micah: Yeah, I think Matt was here.

Andrew: Oh, okay. All right, so Micah, what house are you?

Micah: Ravenclaw.

Andrew: Ooh.

Matt: Ooh.

Micah: I correctly predicted.

Eric: Oh, look at that.

Andrew: And Eric?

Eric: I am actually in Hufflepuff.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: [laughs] All right, all right, now is the time. Get your laughter out, come on, come on.

Andrew: Mikey is in Hufflepuff, too, which was shocking.

Eric: That’s what he said, yeah.

Andrew: Mikey B. And I think Ben is in Slytherin – or Ravenclaw? I can’t remember. But there’s been a lot of surprises.

Eric: Yeah, yeah. Matt, what are you in?

Matt: I’m in Slytherin.

Eric: No kidding? So…

Andrew: Yeah, that’s right.

Eric: And Andrew, you’re Gryffindor, right?

Andrew: I’m in Gryffindor.

Eric: So we have all four houses right now on this show.

Andrew: No wonder this show has always worked so perfectly.

[Matt and Micah laugh]

Andrew: Such a beautiful balance. See, we don’t need women, we just need people in different houses.

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Micah: Oh, that won’t…

Matt: Yeah, to hell with Laura.

Micah: …get any e-mails sent.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Micah: Well, I was going to say, though, I did have a choice between Ravenclaw and Slytherin.

Andrew: Oh.

Micah: And I…

Andrew: So why did you pick Ravenclaw?

Micah: Because it was the first one that came up. [laughs] I really had no…

Andrew: What do you mean?

Micah: Well, when you have the little blocks to select between…

Andrew: Mhm.

Micah: …it was Ravenclaw, which was up first, and then Slytherin below it.

Andrew: Oh.

Micah: I don’t know. I mean, I thought if I was sorted in real life that I would always be in Ravenclaw, so I went with Ravenclaw.

Eric: Yeah.

Micah: No rhyme or reason. It would have been cool to be in Slytherin, though.

Eric: So you went because it was the first thing to click, right?

Micah: Yeah.

Eric: That’s what you said? Because it came up first?

Micah: I was being sarcastic.

Eric: Because some of my Sorting questions – by the end of it, though, people were getting – some of their questions were like “Black or white?” “Night or day?” “Heads or tails?”

Andrew: Right.

Matt: “Left or right?”

Eric: [laughs] “Left or right?” Really, like…

Andrew: “Forest or river?”

Eric: That doesn’t feel much…

Matt: Yeah.

Eric: …like a choice to me.

Matt: Mhm.

Eric: Like, what if I had chosen – if I had picked heads instead of tails, would that really have said enough about me to be in a different house?

Matt: Yeah…

Andrew: The thing about Jo, though, is that if you were to ask her why this matters, she would give you an explanation for why. [laughs] So…

Eric: Yeah. I just thought that that was funny because all the other questions I think during Sorting were really introspective. Like, you have seven answers, “What creature do you most want to study?” Or this, that, and the other thing. And then to get the last two, the most crucial two when I’m like, “Okay, I know that’s coming. I know I’m about to be sorted.” And I had “Moon or stars?” was one of the questions, and I was like, “Okay, the stars are pretty cool. A little bit cooler than the moon.” And then the next one was, “Black or white?”

Micah: Does everybody get the same questions, though, or did people get different questions?

Eric: I heard for the wand, everybody gets the same questions, but for Sorting it’s all random.

Matt: Yeah.

Eric: So – I mean, do you remember your Sorting questions? If they were…

Andrew: I remember “Left or right?” “Forest and river,” although that may have been for the wand, so I can’t…

Eric: Forest – oh, was that with the beach? You could go into the beach or by the castle.

Andrew: Oh yeah, yeah.

Eric: Yeah, it was the wand.

Andrew: So either along the beach, along the river, or through the forest.

Eric: Interesting.

Andrew: Something like that.

Eric: Yeah. But no, I got Hufflepuff, and I’m actually happy with it, I think, because it’s not so bad.

Matt: You always saw yourself, though, in Hufflepuff.

Eric: Well, I saw myself – I said – I didn’t really ever really, really, really Sort myself. I have the Gryffindor robes that I wear around everywhere, and so I was like, “Yeah, I’m a Gryffindor.” But I was kind of waiting on something like this to tell me where I belonged, and so that’s kind of cool.

Matt: Okay, so are we talking about – are we going onto Sorting now? Are we talking about how we like the Sorting thing? Because…

Eric: Well, why not?

Andrew: What do you want to say?

Matt: I’m actually not a fan of the Sorting at all.

Eric: Okay.

Andrew: Why? Is it for the reason I’m about to bring up?

Matt: No – bring up your reason.

Andrew: Okay. Well, here’s my thing, and I hate to burst everybody’s bubble, but I realize this: When looking in the Great Hall – when you’re in the Great Hall…

Matt: Oh, yes.

Andrew: …you can see how many people are in each house on Pottermore, and what worries me is that each house has a very similar number of people. As of right now there’s 94,000 in Gryffindor, 94,000 in Ravenclaw, 94,000 in Hufflepuff, and 93,000 in Slytherin.

Eric: Uproar. I call it.

Andrew: Now – yeah, this is the issue. This cannot be truly sorting each person because if it were, it wouldn’t be so perfectly even. The chances of everybody getting sorted so evenly is very – it’s not possible! Surely…

Matt: It’s delusional.

Andrew: …this world cannot be made up of so many Hufflepuffs and Ravenclaws, I’m sorry but it just…

[Eric and Matt laugh]

Andrew: It can’t be true.

Eric: You don’t believe that Hufflepuffs exist, do you?

Andrew: No, they’re fictional.

[Eric laughs]

Matt: I honestly think that a lot of the Harry Potter fans are Ravenclaw.

Andrew: I was joking about that. But nonetheless, it can’t be so even! [laughs] So, I’m afraid to say that – this is definitely the most accurate Sorting you will probably ever get, given that JK Rowling wrote these questions herself. But it is not a true Sorting because the reason they need to make the houses even in Pottermore is so that each house has a chance of winning the House Cup, of getting the most points.

Matt: Now, this really upsets me because no one really cares to win the House Cup more than they want to be sorted into the right house.

Eric: Accurately. You’re right.

Matt: Who the hell – oh sorry, who the heck, wants to win the House Cup if it means that you’re sorted into the wrong house? Ninety percent of the fans who went on Pottermore wanted to be Sorted. That’s what everybody wants to do, is get Sorted into the house that they should be in. When they read the books, that’s what they think of. They wish, “Well, I’m actually in Hufflepuff,” or, “I see myself as a Ravenclaw,” or something. They don’t care – they don’t think that far ahead, and we care more about what the proper Sorting is.

Eric: Yeah.

Matt: I just feel like they should have put more emphasis and I don’t know, just more work into the Sorting, than just like, “Okay, the whole reason why we’re sorting people is so we have an equal number of amounts, people can just compete for this House Cup.”

Eric: Yeah, they shouldn’t have pretended – if it’s not actually accurate – and if it is, woot – as Andrew points out, it’s highly suspect that people would be – or impossible that people would be evenly matched, so evenly sorted. They shouldn’t have pretended otherwise.

Andrew: Mhm. Now the points system, I’m not even sure – let’s talk about that. I’m not sure what the purpose of house points – I mean, it’s loyal to the book, each house gets house points for brewing potions and I think when you find things in Moments you get points, too. But I’m just wondering, is it really that important? I mean, I propose that Pottermore just get rid of points and…

Eric: [laughs] Well hang on, because – if they got rid of points, then what would there be to do?

Andrew: Well, you can still do those things, you just…

Eric: Oh.

Andrew: I mean, you can get your own personal points, but let’s just not compete for the House Cup.

Eric: Oh, yeah.

Micah: Mhm.

Eric: Yeah, that’s possible, because didn’t they also – they said it wasn’t going to be an alternative reality game. But yet at the same time, you’re collecting things for your pouch or for your trunk, and you get the feeling that you’re going to have to use them later.

Andrew: Mhm.

[Matt laughs]

Eric: All these points, all this money that you have that you spend, and you have to buy some of the books on your school list before you can go to school. Things like that are just like an alternative reality game. So, I’m finding, again, that maybe Pottermore actually is something that we’ve been told that it wouldn’t be, or – it’s growing and changing, but it’s getting close to being what we initially, even on this show, speculated that it would be, which is what they said it wouldn’t be. It’s a lot less like an encyclopedia than we thought, I think it’s fair to say, or at least that’s my opinion.

Matt: Mhm.

Micah: Yeah…

Matt: No, no, that’s a pretty good assessment.

Andrew: Micah?

Micah: Yeah, I was just going to say, when you’re talking about having to get the books in Diagon Alley before you can go off to school, I thought that would be a little bit more interactive than just clicking on a store and selecting all the books that you need, maybe physically actually going into the store and having to search around for them. I feel like…

Eric: You mean like transporting through your computer screen and getting to walk around?

Micah: No, no, no, no. I mean, as you can go into Gringotts or Ollivander’s, but actually physically going into these stores and looking around the shelves for the books that you need. I just – I feel like as a whole, Pottermore lacks a lot of interactivity and there’s not enough really.

Eric: Well…

Micah: You’re clicking on a…

Eric: Yeah.

Micah: …Galleon here or you’re clicking on a Chocolate Frog card there, and it’s just like there’s not enough that’s going on. And some chapters there’s just nothing, it’s just…

Andrew: There’s nothing.

Micah: …text…

Eric: Yeah.

Matt: No, there’s not.

Micah: …which you already know…

Eric: Yeah.

Micah: …because you have the books.

Matt: Well, I feel like they should also have more side projects that you can be doing to make you want to come back. Like – honestly – I mean, I think Pottermore should have something like how they do with FarmVille on Facebook or something. They have Herbology or something in Hogwarts, where you just go and start planting your – I don’t know, your crops…

Andrew: Your plants, and go check on them later.

Matt: Your crops and stuff, yeah. And then spread the roots – plant your Mandrakes. Do something.

Andrew: Or let’s get Neopets in Pottermore.

[Eric laughs]

Matt: Yeah.

Andrew: Let’s take care of the owl that you purchased back in Diagon Alley.

Eric: That’s true.

Andrew: Let’s – every morning I want an e-mail, “Hello Andrew. Hello CatSeeker211, it’s time to feed your owl.”

[Eric laughs]

Matt: Mhm.

Eric: Don’t…

Andrew: Then three hours later, “Hello CatSeeker211, it’s time to scoop up the owl droppings.”

Matt: Right.

Andrew: And then I have to go back into Pottermore and scoop up my owl droppings.

Matt: “Hello Andrew, your owl just died.”

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Because you didn’t feed it?

Matt: You didn’t feed it.

Eric: It was diphtheria, right, just like on Oregon Trail?

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: [laughs] Really, the question I have, too – it seems like – so we want more interactivity, but yet the interactivity – the opportunity is already there, like Micah was saying. I mean, when you’re in that bookshop in Diagon Alley and you have to buy these books, why can’t we examine those books closer? Once we’ve purchased them – we’ve actually had to click on it and hit “Purchase”, and we had to go to Gringotts first to make sure we had enough money and all that stuff. But once you actually buy the book, all it does is let you move forward in the story. It’s not like you can actually look at that book, read some of it.

Matt: Mhm.

Eric: Or even the items in your trunk. To actually be able to – you’re carrying around all these items you’ve found but you can’t actually click on them, find out anything more about them.

Matt: Yeah.

Eric: And I think that’s tremendously – not off-putting, but it’s like shutting us out.

Micah: It’s limiting.

Eric: It’s very limiting.

Matt: Well – yeah, exactly. A lot of the times when you’re on these screens, too – for each scene, all you have – all there really is one thing for you to click on. But there’s all this stuff going on onscreen, but your focus is only allowed to be on that one thing that’s allowing you to go forward. Like the one with the snake at the zoo, You clicked on the snake and then the scene was over.

Eric: Oh, speaking of that snake – okay, so it does a cute little dance. I like the snake…

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: …and how it dances. But I had such an issue just viewing the screen on Pottermore in many of these scenes. I actually ended up having to hook up my computer to my TV, which I’ve never done before, and I made the Pottermore a separate window just because I think, size-wise – or maybe that it is longer than it is wide, and so you always have to scroll down to kind of see everything. But I had a lot of trouble just following Pottermore on my computer screen just because of how it’s laid out, and I think reading-wise, it was tough to read. Did you guys have any trouble with that?

Micah: I told…

Andrew: Ummm.

Micah: Andrew, I had loading problems, not where it would say, “Pottermore is currently unavailable,” but just my browser would freeze up a lot. I don’t know if that was…

Andrew: Mhm.

Micah: …just from the volume of people that were using it at the time or what it was, but it just – every time I tried to click to move forward – you know how you can view three different versions of each chapter?

Andrew: Mhm.

Micah: It would just – it would lock up and…

Andrew: Hmmm.

Micah: …it just made it really – I don’t know, not fun.

[Matt laughs]

Andrew: Well, yeah, I’ve never run into that problem. I’m not sure what…

Eric: Now, I’ve heard from people who’ve had the same issue, but I haven’t experienced it myself. I feel like it’s a very common thing. People talk about their screens freezing up during Potions a lot, and – or during Sorting, even, and possibly having to retake questions, or have it be official or something. But on Twitter, if you just search for #Pottermore, the only thing you’re finding are people who say, “I’m frozen up,” or “I’m still waiting for my -” it can’t be a good experience for everybody. But at the same time, yeah, I’ve seen a lot of the “freezing” tweets. A lot of people are getting that. And still, when I click on Pottermore sometimes, I have to wait fifteen seconds or thirty seconds, and then the page will reload, and it will say, high volume this, high volume that. And look, I’ve already mentioned on this show that I don’t think that that should be an issue at all, is handling the high volume of people, because they knew from day one that there was going to be…

Micah: No, no way. I mean…

Eric: …a high volume of people on this site. There’s…

Micah: And it’s not like they’re lacking in funds to…

Andrew: Yeah, there’s money for this, right?

Eric: Well, I mean, do you want to point that out? Yeah, I mean, you do, right? Because it’s Harry Potter!

Micah: I just did.

Eric: Yeah.

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: I mean…

Andrew: Well…

Micah: But what about – Andrew, I know you talked about this on the last show, but now that all of us are in Pottermore, the return value. I mean, I don’t think it’s very great…

Andrew: Yeah.

Micah: …for people to want to come back, unless they start adding new features.

Matt: But – I mean, that’s as it is, though, right now. They haven’t updated really since they started giving…

Andrew: No, because this is it. This is Pottermore.

Eric: Well, that’s – see, I’d like to believe…

Matt: No, it’s not.

Andrew: Yes!

Eric: …that this is not it, though.

Matt: No, it’s not.

Eric: I really want to believe that come October 31st or whatever, that it’s going to be completely different. I want to believe…

Andrew: No. [laughs]

Eric: …that the Beta is completely different from Book 1, because…

Andrew: Keep believing. [laughs]

Eric: [laughs] Okay, I will keep believing. But I’m saying I really want – I mean, why are you so – why do you believe that it’s not at all going to be different?

Andrew: Well, what could they possibly add? I mean, the only thing I could see, and I think this would be very smart, is if they added some new content from JK Rowling so they can have another media splash, make some news. Otherwise the only news when this opens to the public is going to be, “Hey, it’s open to the public now,” [laughs] and I don’t think – I think a lot of the Pottermore buzz is kind of over already because the people who really wanted to get in are getting in now and the reviews have not been spectacular, and the next time there’s going to be a big update to this is when they add Chamber of Secrets. I really don’t think they are going to be adding more features or anything because they have a hard enough time just getting people into the site now.

Eric: Well, that’s what it seems like, is that they’re just so overwhelmed that there really won’t be any updates because people are still having issues even staying on the site for any period of time, which is a real shame because there is so much – there are so many little blurbs of information that are just summary that they could totally expand on, and it just kills me to think that they would spend so much time designing these – this art for each Moment in the first book, but to not have it be even more interactive. And I’ve got to ask, is this us being crazy Harry Potter fans, “We want more, we want more”? Or do we have a legitimate argument here that we’re being shown these things but it almost draws the attention to just how empty these scenes are?

Micah: Mhm.

Andrew: Well, yeah…

Matt: Well…

Andrew: I mean, I suppose if they really wanted to, they could add another item or two that you could pick up in these more empty Moments. I know the emptiest Moments are the ones where you just pick up one Galleon and that’s it, and that’s really bad, I think. But I think going off of Eric’s idea, he was saying more information about some of these items – I’m looking at my trunk now and I have a Golden Snitch. It’d be nice to click on the Golden Snitch and get a little history about it.

Eric: Right.

Matt: Yeah.

Andrew: Or a Prefect badge.

Matt: I think the reason why we’re a little underwhelmed by it all is because we know the potential that it has, and we know what it could be because it’s…

Andrew: Well, here’s what everybody really wants: they want the encyclopedia. [laughs]

Matt: Well, that’s good then. That’s good, then there’s a possibility that there actually might be an encyclopedia.

Eric: Well, let’s talk about…

Andrew: But it won’t be.

Eric: …the information. So…

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: …I thought the information that we do get from Jo is great.

Andrew: Yeah, it is great.

Eric: It’s really exciting and really interesting, and just as relevant as ever, and really well thought out. I mean, I laughed, I cried.

Andrew: Yeah, it’s classic Jo stuff.

Matt: You cried, Eric?

Andrew: It’s stuff you would expect to find in the encyclopedia and it’s written in a way that – it’s classic Jo, like I said. It’s classic Harry Potter. You would find it in the books or you would find it in an encyclopedia if that were to exist.

Eric: So, why is this information few and far between? I mean, we were told that she wrote 18,000 words, 180,000 words for…

Andrew: 18,000 words…

Eric: 18,000 words?

Andrew: …for Sorcerer’s Stone.

Eric: For Sorcerer’s Stone.

Andrew: So, it’s all here. I mean, you just sort of got to – it would be nice if there was a way you can kind of – I want a button up top that says…

Matt: Like a site map?

Andrew: …”New Content”.

Eric: Well, I feel like…

Andrew: No.

Eric: …if you “Favorite” it…

Andrew: Yeah, you can do that.

Eric: If you “Favorite” the new content, then you can browse…

Andrew: It’s a bit of a hassle, though.

Eric: Yeah, it is.

Andrew: So, I see in the Favorites area, you can – apparently, it didn’t remember my “Favorites”. I could have sworn I did “Favorite” some chapters. You can set “Favorites” there in…

Eric: But it’s like Facebook “Favorites” and Facebook “Likes”, too. Why would you rely so heavily on something else when you’re trying to do your own thing?

Matt: The art is really nice.

Andrew: The art is really nice. And they did it in such a way – I think they’ve said this in interviews, is that you can’t see the faces of people because Pottermore is about the books, and in the books you have your own imagination. So…

Eric: Yeah, that was really clever.

Andrew: …with the art, they did not want to ruin people’s imagination of what they had developed in their head while they were reading, so that’s why they took out the faces.

Micah: Oh, they should never…

Andrew: And that’s good.

Micah: …have made the movies.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Well, Mr. Warner Bros. disagrees with you.

Micah: Yep. But…

Eric: Overall…

MuggleCast 239 Transcript (continued)

Main Discussion: Pottermore (continued)

Andrew: Oh, actually, I did – jumping back to something real quick, I thought of a new feature they are going to add in October.

Eric: Oh.

Andrew: It’s the e-book store.

Eric: Oh, yeah.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Oh, I see.

Andrew: [laughs] Sorry. But yeah, that’s the new feature coming in October.

Eric: But yeah, I’m really optimistic that a lot is coming to Pottermore in October, because why wouldn’t it? I mean, it just doesn’t make sense to even allow a million people to get the exact same experience early that you would in October, because these books are coming out so far in between of themselves, you are just going to exhaust people. You are going to get people, “Oh, seen it, done it, been there, done that.” Come October, there’s going to be – granted, there are more than a million Harry Potter fans out there but I just feel like, as Andrew said, all the buzz is sort of over and the reviews are not that great. So, I just don’t think – there’s nowhere to go but down, almost, if you don’t provide any new content to what you already have. I mean, I thought Beta – and definition – the reason to do Beta testing is to get some serious feedback to make changes, and by making changes, I just assumed, for instance, that more than a quarter of the people would be in by this point. Or more than – what is it, is it half? It’s not even half.

Andrew: We are at, like, 380,000.

Eric: 380,000 out of a million, and we have a month to go. Get that feedback in time to make changes for your opening. When you open in October, have it be new and improved. I was under the impression that they had an army of coders and leagues of people just waiting to fix whatever would be broken, and it just doesn’t seem like that at all. It almost seems very vacant, very empty.

Andrew: The Pottermore Insider, that’s the official blog they update from time to time, they have issued some updates. For one, new invites are going out daily, so if you still haven’t gotten in, they are coming out daily now so you should be getting in.

Eric: About that, are they…

Andrew: I won’t say soon, but…

Eric: I feel like they really are going by day based on the Magic Quill, when you got in. That seems evident…

Andrew: I don’t know. It’s hard to say.

Eric: …now more than ever. It really does, though. But I’m just so – I wanted to pin that on that.

Andrew: And they did answer some questions because, like Eric said, they do use the Beta to make changes. And they did say they are going to make changes to the potions because the potions take a long time to brew, I think up to an hour, which just seems odd.

Micah: Yeah, you just forget about it. I mean, people – most people aren’t going to sit at their computer for an hour, and if they go away, they are going to forget about it.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: Just have more content to keep us on the page for an hour.

Andrew: Mhm. And I think they said they are going to be using the Beta to make changes to, maybe, how many Galleons you start out with, how much things cost. They are seeing how users are interacting with the site, and making changes based on things that are already in there. So, it would be some amazing, cool surprise if, come October, it opens to the public, and oh look, there’s Chamber of Secrets ready. But that’s not happening. I think they have said Chamber of Secrets will be next year.

Micah: The…

Andrew: And I – well, go ahead.

Micah: No, the other thing that I was going to ask was, are they going to be profiling one character per book? I mean, I think that’s going to get a little bit more difficult as time goes on, because there’s so many characters that the readers are going to want insight into. I think the one that they focused on the most in this first book was McGonagall. You kind of got pieces of her story throughout Sorcerer’s Stone when you were going through Pottermore, but there’s obviously a lot more characters to get backstory on as you go through the other books.

Andrew: Yeah. I mean, I think it depends on whether Jo has material for that or if she wants to write up the material for it.

Eric: Well, she must – I mean, I’m only on – to be honest, I got sorted and I went to bed. It was, like, 3 AM.

Andrew: [laughs] Right, right, that’s what everyone did.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Everyone just got to the point where they get sorted and then sign off. [laughs]

Matt: And then we’re done.

Micah: You cried yourself to sleep from getting into Hufflepuff.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Even by that point, though, there are something like 25 different characters that are listed under – like, when I’m in viewing the book, whatever you’re going to call that. And it’s just like, if they had an off-mention in the chapter they start – you collect them, almost without…

Matt: Mhm.

Eric: …wanting to, so that you can click on all these characters. It’s a pain for me, because I don’t know what I have to click on to advance now, but there are all these huge characters and they’re just little stubs of info, but I feel like she could totally expand on them…

Micah: Yeah.

Eric: …at any point.

Micah: They’re not very descriptive, most of them. They’re just more information – not even more information, they’re the same information I guess you would get if you read the book.

Matt: Which we assume you have.

Andrew: I will say – everybody has obviously been really excited to get into Pottermore, and it definitely is exciting when you’re going through it. I mean, some people who are listening to us talk now who aren’t in Pottermore may be like, “Oh.” Either, “Oh, they’re not Harry Potter fans!” or they’re thinking, “Oh, I shouldn’t be that excited.” But the truth is it is exciting to get in there and to read all the new content, and to get sorted, and to get your wand, and all that. And what I think we should talk about now is just return value, and that’s the thing I think we all have the issue with, because what happens is, as you know by now, you do go through chapter by chapter, each Moment, and you see the new content, you get sorted, you get the wand, you get your pet. And then once you get to the end of Sorcerer’s Stone, then it’s kind of like, “Well, now what? What do I do now?” And there really is no reason to return. And do you guys agree with me? Is there no return value here?

Matt: I haven’t returned since I got sorted.

Eric: And…

Andrew: Well, you’re just not much of a fan.

Matt: I guess not, you’re right.

Eric: Well, I guess that makes me neither, though, really, but – even though I only got…

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: I only got sorted a couple of days ago, but I will going back. But I was really trying to wonder about the return value, and I think that things like Potions or Duels are what they’re hoping will keep people over. I mean, building a community on Pottermore is kind of, I think, what they were looking to do, so that in between these bouts of new content, you can interact with people and duel them.

Micah: But…

Eric: I feel like that was the goal.

Micah: The major problem I think that they’re still facing is the fact that people don’t know who each other are, and it’s…

Andrew: Yes.

Micah: …such a task to have to go and find out…

Matt: Oh, yes.

Micah: …who your friends are. You don’t even know. I mean, I think early on when people were getting their names, they pushed it out on Twitter and Facebook and all those other places, but now there’s just no place to go…

Eric: Yeah.

Micah: …where you can find your friends.

Eric: You know what kind of friend you were. Either you wrote your friends’ names down or you didn’t, and I know what kind of friend I am.

Andrew: Yeah, I didn’t.

Micah: I didn’t.

Eric: I did not.

Andrew: Why? I shouldn’t have to.

Matt: Yeah.

Andrew: That’s ridiculous! [laughs]

Eric: [laughs] “In this day and age…”

Andrew: And you know what?

[Matt laughs]

Andrew: Here’s the other thing that bothers me: they’re really big on, “Pottermore has to be safe for kids, it has to be a family experience,” and the truth is, look, Pottermore – Harry Potter fans are not kids. We don’t ñ why is this catering to the nine year olds when it’s the people 16, 18, and older who shaped Harry Potter? JK Rowling is not here to thank the nine year olds, she’s here to thank the people who bought the books, that were there at midnight, lining up, reading it overnight. I mean, this is ridiculous!

Eric: I don’t think that’s…

Andrew: AvisKey101, who is that?!

[Matt and Micah laugh]

Andrew: How do I know?! Should I accept this person? Should I go on Twitter and be like, “Who is AvisKey?”

Eric: Well, look at their owl.

Andrew: “Someone tell me!”

Eric: Look at their ñ don’t you know…

Andrew: Ugh!

Eric: Don’t you know how to tell people by their wands, anyway? But if they… [laughs]

Andrew: Yeah, I guess I should.

Eric: They have this wand, if they’re a friend or not, an ally or an enemy.

Andrew: I mean, maybe if I slept with them, I should know their wand, but that’s the only way I could possibly…

Eric: That’s funny. No, I think ñ look, that’s not an unfair point. I think ñ okay, so one of the reasons that there’s not more content, more return value on Pottermore ñ do you think that ñ because Book 1 is ñ honestly, Book 1 is where I expected the most information from JK Rowling because she sat for ten years writing these books before they got published, so I just assumed that the most content about who she was, what she was doing before the books came out, would appear during this book. But it seems like either they’re going to appear later because maybe she would say, “Oh, this character originally – something else happened at this point,” or maybe she still doesn’t feel that that information is relevant to really talk about on Pottermore, in which case, is Pottermore not the right medium for some of the information we’re looking for?

Andrew: Yeah, I think for there to be return value, there has to be something to come back for daily, and what has that always been on the Harry Potter fan sites? The news! I don’t know what else ñ or return value could be logging onto Pottermore and being able to directly interact with your real friends. And yes, I guess Dueling would do that, but I ñ honestly, I haven’t even done Dueling yet because during this Beta period, it’s kind of been shut down and they’ve admitted that…

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: …it doesn’t work for anyone right now, but it will be back eventually. It just seems to me like there has to be something where you come back on a daily basis and it’s fresh. And I was joking about taking care of your owl, but I’m starting to think they need that…

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: …because I’ve ñ on my iPad, I occasionally play this game called We Rule and you have to farm. And for no reason other than ñ for some reason, I get pleasure out of it. I have to log in ñ I don’t do this anymore, by the way, but a year ago ñ I had to log in daily and I had to harvest my crops, and then plant new crops, and then come back six hours later and do it all over again. [laughs] And it’s pointless, it doesn’t ñ it’s not making money or it’s not rewarding me in anyway, but I just like to do it. [laughs] So, maybe they should let you take care of your owl.

Eric: [laughs] It’s funny, because…

Andrew: And sadly, I would probably take care of it.

Eric: [laughs] Talking about mental illness and how Pottermore deals with it or doesn’t deal with it, I’ll never forget Chapter 2, we’re in the Dursleys’ kitchen for – I think it was “The Worst Birthday,” and because you’re pointing at the screen, zooming and trying to figure out what to collect, I was roaming my cursor around and I came on the kitchen table, and the cursor started – it turned blue, and it says, “Ooh, you’ve noticed the salt and pepper!” And then the…

Matt: Yeah!

Eric: …button says “Collect.” [laughs]

Matt: Why…

Eric: Oh…

Andrew: Yay!

Matt: Why would you collect salt and pepper for your trunk?

Eric: …I’m a hoarder now apparently, Matt. I’ve noticed – uh oh, I’ve noticed the salt and pepper. Now I have to collect it. So, I…

Matt: I highly doubt Hogwarts is in short supply of salt and pepper shakers.

Eric: Salt and pepper! So, I collect – but it’s in my cart, it’s in my trunk with my alarm clock and bucket of whatever else it was I collected, and now I’m just waiting to use it. They have to be something. They have a team of people here. There has to be a use for what we’re collecting, and you’ve got to think Pottermore, releasing these books this way, it’s a long-term commitment towards excellence where even if we feel like it’s not what they promised initially, they’re going to deliver, right? I mean, they absolutely care about this sort of thing succeeding. It has to succeed. So, they’ll be working on it, right? I mean, it can only get better, right?

Andrew: Yes, I guess. I mean, they’re going to have to add some serious features other than the books to make it better. I mean, certainly having the books in there will make it better as well. In case you don’t remember, the books – the next book will be out some time in 2012. They haven’t really narrowed down when that’s going to be, but presumably once this opens to the public, that’s when…

Eric: Well…

Andrew: …work on Book 2 is really going to start.

Eric: …the interesting thing, too, is that we’ve lived off of just the books, and just the books for several years, right? I mean, it was – oh, four films, and arguably – or four years before the first book and the first film, but arguably things were still growing then. But I mean, even in terms of content-wise, right? We’ve lived off basically just the books, and maybe some of the movies, for ten or twelve years now. So, Pottermore drawing attention to, “Hey, we’re going to give you something to live off the books for again,” was kind of – was it a bad thing? Because we were able to do this sort of without Pottermore, almost, is to kind of relax and still go on living life and still go on loving Harry Potter.

Matt: Mhm.

Andrew: So, we could talk about this for – all day, but we’ll end it there for now and get to some e-mails. One other thing we wanted to mention, though, was that Pottermore – the Twitter account,, they’ve been doing house pride days, and today was – well, tomorrow being Friday, is Gryffindor Pride Day. So…

Eric: [scoffs] Friday.

Andrew: I’ll be there. I’m in Gryffindor, I’ll be there.

Eric: What happened to your CastleCloak?

Andrew: Oh, I… [laughs]

Eric: You mentioned it on the show.

Andrew: You know what? I never used the account. I did not cheat and get sorted again. I didn’t use the account because I mistakenly – I didn’t want to put it out there for the friend request thing, but then what I realized is that my new account – I connected it with Facebook, so I could see my real friends on Pottermore, and then my Facebook friends who are MuggleCast listeners, added me on it anyway, so…

Eric: [laughs] Oh.

Andrew: …it was kind of all for nothing.

Eric: Yeah, okay.

Andrew: But I didn’t cheat, I promise you.

Eric: Okay.

Andrew: For the record, I am now CatSeeker. [laughs]

Eric: What’s the number?

Matt: CatSeeker?

Andrew: I don’t know if I want to say the number. [laughs]

Eric: [laughs] Oh, you’re CatSeeker! Okay.

Andrew: I’m still catching up on the friend requests.

Eric: Just friend them on Facebook.

Andrew: And I’ve been adding everybody who sends me a friend request just because…

Eric: I’m going to friend request you right now.

Andrew: I mean, what does it make a difference if they’re friends with me or not?

Eric: Right, now that they’re…

Andrew: They have no Wall to write on, there’s – I guess everybody can just challenge and we can duel. I can duel all these people. [laughs] And I’ll beat you all.

[Eric and Matt laugh]

Andrew: Does everybody else want to say their names if they haven’t already?

Matt: Mine’s ThornSpell, but I don’t know the number.

Eric: My Hufflepuff is StrikeLumos. I love it.

Andrew: Micah?

Micah: Are we saying our usernames? Is that what it is?

Andrew: Yeah. If you don’t want to say…

Micah: No, I’ve said it on the show before. ShadowSpell93.

Andrew: All right. That’s a cool one.

Matt: [whispers] ShadowSpell.

Listener Feedback: Potions on Pottermore

Andrew: All right. Well, let’s move on to some e-mails about Pottermore. Enough with what we think, let’s see what the listeners think. This first one comes from N-G-O-C, 19, of Australia…

Eric: Ngoc [pronounced “Noc”]. It’s just Nogc.

Andrew: Ngoc.

Eric: It’s a Vietnamese name.

Andrew: Oh, interesting. [laughs]

“Hey guys, I just received my welcome e-mail for Pottermore a few days ago and have been steadily progressing through the chapters. However, I’m having a bit of trouble with potion-brewing. After brewing, the pop-up message tells me it will take about eighty minutes, and that I can leave the page and come back, but when I do, my potion and progress has disappeared! I’ve been listening to your podcasts probably well over a year now and didn’t know who else to ask about this. Cheers!”

I don’t think we can offer really any assistance. That may have just been a bug, but like the Pottermore Insider said, it will soon not take so long for potions to brew.

Matt: Was it intentionally 80 minutes or that was the bug?

Andrew: No, it was intentionally taking so long, and who knows why they decided to do it that way.

Eric: Yeah. That’ll be the real thing I’m looking for, is like a “Behind Pottermore” book where they’re like, “This is why it was like this.”

Andrew: [laughs] Yeah…

Micah: Melissa will write it.

Andrew: …and all the drama. [laughs] Melissa will write it. Pottermore, A History.

Eric: And JK Rowling will foreword.

[Andrew and Matt laugh]

Eric: We’re all jealous of her success.

Andrew: Micah, can you read the next e-mail?

Listener Feedback: Getting Into Gringotts

Micah: Next e-mail is from Emily, 19, of East Lansing, Michigan, and she says:

“Hey MuggleCasters, I know you’re probably getting a thousand of these e-mails right now, but I’m sending out a cry for help with regards to Pottermore. I made it to Chapter 5 and have found my shopping list – and the funny bit about clothing, haha – but I cannot move on to the next moment! The site, in theory, knows that I found the list, it’s in my trunk and everything, but Gringotts remains closed to me. Help from y’all or fellow listeners would be much appreciated! Have fun storming the castle! Emily.”

Matt: Aww, thanks, Em.

Eric: I don’t know – yeah, I was stuck there, too, but it was just because I hadn’t picked up the school shopping list, which you have to zoom in twice to get it. You’re talking about the north end [laughs] of Diagon Alley, or when you just enter Diagon Alley. And yeah, it says, “Go find your shopping list,” and it’s just laying on the ground. You have to zoom in twice to get it. But until you…

Micah: I think she says she has it.

Eric: Yeah, yeah, that’s what she said, but sometimes – because on Pottermore where you – there are the arrow keys to go to the next scene and the previous scene. That next scene arrow won’t – it’s locked sometimes until you find that item. It was locked for me, and so – but once I found it, it was unlocked, and if she’s still saying it’s locked, I don’t know what to do about that. It’s possible that there may be an item that you need. Oh, I think I know what it is, is that you have to actually – well no, do you go to Gringotts before you get your books? Yeah, you have to, right? So, I…

Micah: Yeah, because you need the money to do so.

Eric: Oh, try clicking on the Gringotts door, on the front door. I think there’s a man walking in there or something, and that may or may not be one of the little requirements you have to do.

Andrew: Pottermore Tech Support is here for you!

Eric: [laughs] “I am sorry that this happened to you.”

Andrew: That’s something else I didn’t really enjoy, is the switching between the shopping list and then grabbing the item, and then going back to the shopping list…

Eric: I was glad – well see, why isn’t it in your trunk? This shows how inconsistent they chose to be, which is that your shopping list…

Andrew: What, the items?

Eric: Yeah, in that scene, your shopping list is hanging down on the right side of your screen, when in theory it should be in your trunk with your other items but you should be able to examine all of the items in your trunk closer so that you could pull up your shopping list. It’s basically not using what they have. It’s not using the trunk, because it’s basically saying all the other stuff you’ve collected is crap, you’re not going to use it, but all the relevant plot details for moving forward, we’re going to hang from the right of the screen. And it’s like, well – and now I’m looking in my item list in my trunk, and of course the shopping list is in there! So, it’s not like they didn’t code it in, it’s just that you can’t view any of these things with more detail and actually use them in your quest yet.

Listener Feedback: Wands on Pottermore

Andrew: Erica, 19, of Austin, asks:

“The wands of the characters that have new content are listed, like McGonagall and Quirrell, but wands of other characters are not. Do you think more of the main characters will have more complete profiles as other books are released?”

And the answer to that is yes, I think it’s been said multiple times now that there will be content that opens up as you continue to explore.

Micah: Now where do you get that content? Because I don’t think I saw that.

Andrew: Like what?

Micah: What she was talking about in the e-mail.

Andrew: Oh, the wands of the characters that have new content? So, I presume when we learn about other characters, when JK Rowling writes new content about the other characters, then we’ll see their wand. So, when we get a profile on, let’s say, Severus Snape…

Eric: But Micah is saying he hasn’t seen McGonagall and Quirrell’s wand, right?

Micah: Well, maybe I just glossed over it when I was reading through the new information on them.

Eric: Okay.

Micah: It’s possible.

Andrew: Yeah. Well…

Eric: Is that part of the description, or is there actually a profile page for McGonagall then? Where it says that…

Andrew: Yes. Well, there is kind of a profile page, but – could somebody tell me right now where McGonagall’s chapter is?

Eric: Uhhh.

Andrew: I mean, this is the issue. Like, okay, I want to look up McGonagall, but…

Eric: What, you mean you didn’t “Facebook Like” it?

Andrew: …first I’ve got to find the chapter.

Eric: You didn’t “Favorite” it?

Andrew: [laughs] No, I didn’t.

Eric: Well, that’s the only way you can find things.

Andrew: Yeah, I need to learn that, apparently. Hopefully they’re going to add – let’s just get it over with. Just add an encyclopedia button, and let’s see all the new content from Jo…

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: …right there, just list it. Say “Click here to jump to McGonagall. Click here to jump to…”

Eric: But there’s thrill…

Andrew: “…Quirrell.”

Eric: …isn’t there? A challenge in unlocking it? And you guys said that was…

Andrew: Well, right…

Eric: …authentically Jo-like, right?

Andrew: Okay, so first, we unlock it.

Eric: Okay.

Andrew: Then it shows up in this encyclopedia index.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: That’s not much to ask for.

Eric: Without us having to “Favorite” it.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: Because we’re going to “Favorite” it, it’s new content.

Listener Feedback: Pottermore vs. A Physical Encyclopedia

Andrew: This last e-mail from Sherryn from New Zealand, she says:

“As much as it pains me to criticize Jo, I have to say I’m really disappointed. While the graphics are beautiful, I completely agree with Andrew’s review that the site lacks revisit value. I have only visited Pottermore maybe once or twice since completing Book 1 within about four hours of entering. While I really tried to take my time and enjoy, there really is just not much to do, just random clicking and collecting stuff that has no discernible use.”

And she goes on and on a bit more.

“I really feel that if it comes down to Pottermore versus the encyclopedia, I would much rather have a book. As a 22-year-old law student, between university, working part-time, and trying to have a social life, I am not really interested in creating potions or partaking in pretend duels. I know Pottermore is aimed at all ages, but the overall simplicity of the features is a bit insulting. Now I am going to get to the controversial part of the e-mail where I admit to having several Pottermore accounts.”

[laughs] Oh, I should delete this e-mail right now.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: [continues]

“I know everyone who missed out is going to hate me right now, but I can’t do much about this really. I was mainly just really annoyed at the crappy name options I got served with, and curious to see whether the sorting process was as reliable as claimed.”

Oh, okay, now we’re going to get interesting.

“Anyway, in pursuit of my sorting theory, I have been sorted into a different house on three accounts. The first was Gryffindor, then Slytherin, then Hufflepuff. I find this all quite ironic, because I have always thought of myself as a Ravenclaw.”

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Uh oh.

“I remember Melissa from PotterCast saying she got sorted into Gryffindor every time she created an account in the trial period, so this leads me to believe there is something behind the idea that the algorithm possibly skews the sorting process.”

Eric: Yeah, I…

Andrew: So, she kind of – oh, we should have tested that out ourselves, then.

Eric: Well, I have two other accounts just sitting around. I should…

Andrew: You should try.

Eric: …log in and…

Andrew: Try to answer with – now, Sherryn doesn’t say if she answered the same questions…

Eric: Right.

Andrew: …each time. I wonder – I mean, that’s important.

Eric: That’s the other thing, is if I’m still honest, do I get the same house? If so, I have two accounts with the same house. What good is that, right?

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: Or how should I use these extra accounts? I don’t know, but…

Micah: I found out where that extra information was. When you pull up all the blurbs that you get on, let’s say, McGonagall, on the right hand side there’s this little column. It’s like what you would see almost on like…

Eric: “New from JK Rowling”?

Micah: …a wiki page, and it lists McGonagall’s birthday, wand, Hogwarts House, special abilities, parentage, family, hobbies.

Andrew: Sorry, where is this?

Micah: This is if you actually click on her name. Like, say you’re in a chapter which revealed…

Andrew: Oh.

Micah: …new information about her, and you know how it kind of lists everything out, where it’ll say “Discovered in Chapter 7”, “Discovered in Chapter 8”, “Discovered in Chapter 15,” which is where you get all new information about McGonagall? On the right hand side of each of those, it gives you just this little bio, this snapshot bio…

Andrew: Okay.

Micah: …of her, and I guess it does the same thing for Quirrell.

Andrew: There should be, like, a search, too. That would be nice.

Micah: Yeah, that would be cool.

Matt: Mhm.

Micah: Or I think what you were saying, where you go to your main page and you can see the new information right there that you’ve unlocked from JK Rowling…

Andrew: Yeah.

Micah: …and you can just go right to it, instead of having to go through and find it in all these chapters.

Andrew: Right. For example, another way I just got to it is I went to the common room, then I clicked on Godric Gryffindor and there’s, like, two sentences about him, and then on the right, it says “Also in this chapter.” I don’t know what chapter – oh, Chapter 7 apparently, because I guess this is where – well, I have no idea. And then on the right, like I said, you can see a list of characters and these are all the characters I guess in this chapter, or maybe – I don’t know. But anyway, there’s a link to Professor McGonagall there and twenty others, and then when I click on Professor McGonagall, I can see all the information just like you can. So – and the comments. I’m looking at the comments right now, and there’s one – “My Animagus form is Chuck Norris.” It’s like, these are useless.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: So…

Micah: Chuck Norris takes no Animagus form.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: Yeah.

Favorites: Creature

Andrew: Okay, so moving on now, we’re going to play Favorites!

Eric: Woot!

Andrew: And we want to know favorite creature.

Eric: Now is this a specific – by name, like a creature we’ve met…

Andrew: Any.

Eric: …or a type of creature?

Micah: It can be whatever you want.

Andrew: Yeah, broad or specific. Micah, what is your favorite creature?

Micah: Kreacher.

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: I’m just kidding.

Matt: Cop out!

Micah: Yeah, that was too easy. I like Buckbeak.

Andrew: Hmm.

Matt: Hmm. [laughs]

Andrew: Me too, I was fascinated by Buckbeak…

Matt: Yeah.

Andrew: …when reading the book. Matt?

Matt: I don’t know, I didn’t even know [laughs] this was part of the show. I didn’t see this. I’ll probably say Fawkes, the phoenix, is my favorite.

Andrew: Good choices! Eric?

Eric: I’m going to say Boggart, actually.

Andrew: Hmm. I have to say the phoenix in general, though I am partial to Fawkes. I don’t know if we’ve ever really…

Eric: [laughs] Met any others.

Andrew: …learned about any other specific ones. But just the phoenix in general, just the specific Fawkes aside. I’ve just always found that the phoenixes are very beautiful and inspiring and solid.

Matt: Mhm. You know she didn’t invent the phoenix, right?

Andrew: No, I know.

Matt: Oh, okay.

Eric: I mean, maybe the specific rules about it, right? I mean, the rules that govern their nature in the books.

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: Speaking of – my Pottermore wand is phoenix feather core.

Matt: Oh, mine too!

Eric: Cool! Apparently, they’re very temperamental.

Matt: Oh no, mine is very pliant.

Eric: [laughs] It’s a different…

Listener Tweets: Favorite Creature

Andrew: We asked on Twitter: what is your favorite type of creature? kd213 said:

“Nifflers! Very creative, not to mention they have a cool name.”

lax_punky97 said:

“Hippogriffs! They’re proud and don’t take any crap, which is a trait I admire.”

AbbyforthD said:

“Definitely centaurs! Their culture seems absolutely fascinating, and the fact that they come to fight in the battle is so noble!”

Matt: Oh, I didn’t see that in the movie.

[Micah laughs]

Andrew: Not in the movie, I guess.

Matt: Oh.

Andrew: In the book.

Micah: Didn’t Buckbeak show up at the battle, too? Or am I making that up?

Matt: In Half-Blood Prince

Micah: Yeah, that’s right.

Matt: …I think it was.

Micah: The elves showed up, though, right? In Deathly Hallows?

Matt: In the book, not in the movie.

Andrew: And Oliver Wood, but he didn’t come back for the movie. StephAnne21 said:

“Ghosts because I like the idea of talking to someone who lived a really long time ago, or owls because they’re so useful.”

I forgot that ghosts would kind of count as a creature.

Eric: Creature? Yeah.

Andrew: Even though they’re not physical.

Eric: [whispers] Let’s get physical!

Andrew: You disagree, Matt?

Matt: I kind of disagree, but that’s fine. I mean, we’re not going into specifics.

Andrew: RussTurner says:

“Phoenix because they have magic we don’t fully understand.”

Ooh, good point!

Eric and



Matt: Yeah, that was my answer, too.

Eric: Although house-elves have magic we don’t quite fully understand. And goblins have magic we don’t understand.

Andrew: So true.

Matt: Wands have magic we don’t understand.

Eric: Magic.

Matt: It’s not always clear why.

Eric: We just don’t get it.

Andrew: jimmyqex says:

“My favorite creature is Pigwidgeon, Ron’s owl…”

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: [continues]

“…because it is so tiny and crazy. I’m sad they left it out of the films.”

Matt: Yeah.

Andrew: BeccaKid47 said:

“Wouldn’t this be Episode 239?”

Yes, you’re right, that was a mistake that we tweeted.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: That wasn’t her…

Andrew: It said 238.

Eric: …favorite creature. [laughs]

Andrew: Oh, here’s one we haven’t mentioned.


Says OhHeyItsMaddieK.

“They are misunderstood, but beautiful in their own way. I also love Kreacher and the way he changes.”

Muggle Mail: Oscar Buzz at Toronto Film Festival

Andrew: So, thanks everyone who follows us on Twitter, Before recording every episode, we ask a question and we read your answers on the show. Okay, now to wrap up the show, we have some e-mails to get to. Eric, could you read the first one?

Eric: First one is from Alison, 22, from Ontario.

“I’m working at the Toronto Film…”

Andrew: Toronto.

Eric: What did I say?

Andrew: Ontario.

Eric: Really? I’m sorry.

Andrew: Yeah, that’s weird.

Eric: That’s odd. The first one is from – because I was reading it. The first one is from Alison, age 22, from Toronto. She says:

“I’m working at the Toronto Film Festival, the starting gate for the race to Oscar, and can report that there isn’t a single film getting really great Oscar buzz. Toronto International Film Festival is where most, if not all, Oscar contenders are shown, and usually before the festival is over, clear front-runners emerge, and one can essentially predict the Oscar nominees from there. This year, however, there isn’t a single film getting consensus Oscar buzz, which suggests to me that ‘Deathly Hallows – Part 2’ has a very real shot at being nominated, and maybe even winning since the field is so empty. It may seem like a bold statement, but in the past, films like ‘Slumdog Millionaire’, ‘The King’s Speech’, ‘Precious’, ‘The Hurt Locker’, ‘Juno’, and so on and so forth, premiered here and were all but guaranteed nominations by the time the festival was out. But this year, that simply has not happened to the same extent, so fingers crossed!”

That sounds cool.

Matt: Yep.

Andrew: Yeah, good sign. Good sign. And hopefully we’ll be finding out. I mean, the Oscars aren’t until when? They’re still really far away.

Eric: Yeah, I think so. It’s just so odd. I mean, there were plenty of other films besides Harry Potter that came out, right?

Andrew: Mhm.

Matt: Mhm.

Eric: So, we’ll see.

Muggle Mail: Good Slytherins

Andrew: Tiani, 15, from Massachusetts, writes:

“In Episode 238, you guys talked about all of the Slytherins basically turning out as evil except for Severus Snape. But I’d just like to point out that Regulus Black was a Slytherin and he turned against Voldemort – against the “dark side” you could say – in the end, leading to his death. Just saying. Love the show and keep up the amazing work!”

Eric: [laughs] Let me recap. Now in 238, I mentioned something that the Slytherins were all evil, and then everybody else disproved me, very successfully. So, it was only me who said that, and I stand…

Andrew: And weren’t you joking?

Eric: Yeah, I was. Well…

Andrew: I mean, surely you didn’t believe that?

Eric: Pfft. Surely not.

Micah: He was in the midst – weren’t you dueling or something like that?

Eric: Something like…

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: It was dueling…

Matt: And Merlin was a Slytherin, too.

Eric: Yes! Pottermore.

Micah: Spoiler alert, if… [laughs]

Eric: Yeah. Right, oops.

Micah: …you haven’t gotten into Pottermore yet.

Eric: [laughs] But yeah, that’s cool. I stand corrected yet again.

Micah: All right.

Muggle Mail: Best Chapter Movie-goers Should Read

Andrew: Micah, can you read the next e-mail, from Cathy?

Micah: The next e-mail is from Cathy, 20, of Kentucky, and she says:

“Hello! I wanted to weigh in on the ‘Best Chapter a Movie-goer Should Read” discussion.”

Which we discussed on the last episode.

“My choice would be Chapter 16, “A Frosty Christmas” from ‘Half-Blood Prince’. This has the Harry versus Rufus Scrimgeour scene. When you read that part in the book, you get a real sense of who Harry is that you just don’t get when you watch the movies. Although Harry gets a lot of help from others along the way in all the books, he is strong and clever on his own, too, which we see here. And he’s way too committed to what’s right to let anyone, not even a greedy Minister of Magic, bully him. You can’t help but cheer Harry on while he lets the Minister have it! I love the glimpse of Harry as a leader that you get from that scene.”

Eric: Cool! That’s good feedback. I think that the prompt was a really good prompt to begin with…

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: …which was asked by one of our other listeners, actually. So, that’s cool.

Muggle Mail: Andrew’s Accurate Prediction in Episode 71

Andrew: Matt, can you read the next e-mail, from Justin?

Matt: Yes. Justin, 24, from Jacksonville, says:

“So I got into MuggleCast a bit late, and I really wanted to go back and listen to all your old episodes. It helps me get through the long days at work. I am up to Episode 71 and I just heard something crazy. You all are discussing the title of Book 7 and the hangman theory because Jo used the hangman puzzle to release the title. At the 27:16 mark, Andrew said something that blew my mind. He asks…”

Oh, of course Andrew put this in here.

[Eric and Matt laugh]

Andrew: I didn’t put this in here!

Eric: Wow.

Andrew: Micah did. Go ahead.

Matt: [continues]

“He asks if in Book 7 Harry would be willing to sacrifice himself but by a miracle he won’t have to. If that doesn’t perfectly describe the end of ‘Deathly Hallows’, I don’t know what is. So I just wanted to pat you on the back, Andrew, even if the rest of the MuggleCasters ignored your idea at the time.”

[Eric laughs]

Matt: [continues]

“Love the show! Sad it has cut back to once a month.”

Andrew: You know, I’m pretty brilliant, and this is an example of that. I’m going to put this on my resume. No, it’s funny. When we record these shows, honestly, I forget what I say completely…

Eric: Well, you say so much.

Andrew: …especially after recording them…

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: Yeah.

Matt: Well, you were only partially right. He did have to sacrifice himself.

Andrew: But by a miracle, he won’t have to. And I mean…

Matt: But he did.

Andrew: Well…

Eric: But it didn’t matter.

Andrew: He did sacrifice himself, though.

Matt: He did sacrifice himself. He died…

Andrew: But…

Matt: …but then he came back to life.

Andrew: He sacrificed himself but he didn’t. A true sacrifice would have been actually dying.

Eric: Yeah.

Matt: Oh, so he didn’t really sacrifice himself…

[Micah laughs]

Matt: …so it was all in vain.

Eric: Honestly, Matt, there was that child he abandoned, right, underneath the bench there?

Micah: He half-assed it, is that what you’re saying, Andrew?

Andrew: [laughs] No, I’m saying – yes, I guess I am kind of saying that.

Micah: No, but…

Andrew: It was a miracle, I would say.

Matt: Okay, but he did sacrifice himself by – he didn’t know he was going to live after that.

Andrew: Mhm.

Matt: As far as he was concerned, he was sacrificing himself.

Micah: I just – I think these e-mails are cool because a lot of times we’ll get these where people say how the hosts predicted what was going to happen and didn’t even realize that they were doing it. And I remember there was an e-mail not too long ago with Matt predicting where the Deathly Hallows split was going to be, and he nailed it exactly right. So…

Andrew: Mhm.

Matt: I am sort of brilliant.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Wow!

Andrew: Well, the – yeah, it was fun to do all that speculating back then, and it is fun to hear it now in hindsight. I think this may have been a discussion where we may have been talking about, “Is Harry going to die?” because that was something we did talk about a lot.

Eric: Yeah, we did.

Andrew: Would he die in Book 7?

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: And that may have where – I kind of thought Harry would die, because, I mean, that would have been the ultimate ending to the story.

Eric: I didn’t think he would, because he’s called “The Boy Who Lived,” right? I mean, it just would suck if he lived for a little while and then died.

Andrew: True. All right, Eric, final e-mail.

Muggle Mail: Places People Listen to MuggleCast

Eric: Final e-mail is from Phill, aged 23. He says:

“Hey guys, love the show. Second favorite podcast ever (Sorry!). I know you guys are always keen to hear some of the weird and wonderful places your fans listen to MuggleCast, so I thought I would let you know where I was listening very recently: crammed into the back of a four-engined Royal New Zealand Air Force C-130 Hercules transport plane screaming through the air, barely 50 meters above the Afghanistan desert, twisting and turning between the hills on a tactical flight into my deployment. Keep pumping out the hilarity, or it’ll be a very long winter. Phill.”


Andrew: That’s pretty awesome.

Eric: That’s…

Andrew: Thank you, Phill.

Eric: …pretty awesome. Oh, and…

Andrew: I’d classify that as a weird place to listen to MuggleCast, but I would just say that’s downright awesome.

Micah: Yeah…

Eric: Yeah.

Micah: …that’s really cool.

Matt: He’s not supposed to say where he was from, but he was circling above the Afghanistan desert.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: Well, he’s not supposed to say where he’s based.

Eric: In the back of a four-engined…

Matt: Oh, his base.

Eric: …Royal New Zealand Air Force C-130 Hercules transport plane. Yeah, yeah. And future reference to our listeners, you don’t have to apologize for us being your second favorite podcast ever. You do, however, just have to tell us what your favorite podcast is, so we can go and stop them.

Andrew: Yeah, I’m wondering what his favorite podcast is now.

Eric: Right?

Matt: Probably a podcast that does it every week.

Micah: Smart Mouths?

Eric: It’s probably a podcast…

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Yeah, Smart Mouths. It probably is a podcast about C-130 Hercules transport planes. Let’s be honest here.

Andrew: Could be. I just Googled it. It looks like a cool plane.

Eric: Oh, really? I’m going to Google it.

Show Close

Andrew: Anyway, well, thanks Phill and stay safe out there as you fight the good fight. Don’t forget about the MuggleCast website. is where you’ll find everything you need about the show. At the top, you can find an Episodes link and from there you can get every episode. You can even go back and listen to Episode 71, and scroll to 27:16 and hear me make a prediction that made Jo quiver. On the MuggleCast site, you can also find links to our iTunes, our Twitter which is, our Facebook,, and our fan Tumblr which is And also on the MuggleCast website, you can click on “Contact” at the top and from there you can fill out the feedback form to get in touch with us. And maybe, just maybe, we’ll read your e-mail on the next show.

[Show music begins]

Andrew: Thanks everyone for listening! From, I’m Andrew Sims.

Eric: From, I’m Eric Scull.

Micah: From, [laughs] I’m Micah Tannenbaum.

[Andrew and Matt laugh]

Matt: From Fox News, I’m Matt Britton.

[Micah laughs]

Andrew: We’ll see you next time for Episode 240!

Micah: You changed that fast on that?

Matt: Hmm?

Micah: You went from liberal to conservative in the span of an episode.

Matt: Didn’t you get my post?

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Andrew: We’ll see everyone next time for Episode 240! Buh-bye!

Eric: Bye.

Micah: Bye.

[Show music continues]