Transcript #500


MuggleCast 500 Transcript


Transcript for MuggleCast Episode #500, The Best Harry Potter Pick-Up Lines, Popular Head Cannon Ships

Show Intro: MuggleCast by the numbers

[Show music plays]

Andrew Sims: Welcome to MuggleCast, your weekly ride into the wizarding world fandom, and this is Episode 500!

[Andrew, Eric Scull, and Laura Tee make celebration noises]

Micah Tannenbaum: Love the sound effects, guys.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Andrew: Yes, this is a milestone episode of MuggleCast, and we’re going to celebrate today by reviewing the show by the numbers. And then we’re going to get you ready for Valentine’s Day; we’re going to share our favorite Harry Potter-themed pickup lines, and we’re also going to play a couple of games as well, so today’s theme…

Eric: I love the way you said that; you kind of slowed down the way you were talking there, Andrew, like, “Yeeeah, pickup lines.”

Andrew: Well, that’s my hint to y’all. Everybody should present these, deliver these, in a sexy way for Valentine’s Day.

Micah: No problem, Andrew.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Andrew: Micah has the sexiest voice in podcasting. We’ve established this over the years for sure. So yeah, let’s look at MuggleCast by the numbers. We have the number 118; that’s the number of times Umbridge sucked during our show’s history.

[Eric laughs]

Laura: Not enough.

Micah: What a way to start the list.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: 2,356; that’s the number of people who have pledged to our Patreon over its lifetime.

Laura: Wow. That’s amazing.

Andrew: Thank you, listeners, for doing that. It’s a pretty incredible number.

Laura: You guys rock.

Eric: This is the fifth year of our Patreon, you guys. We started it five years ago and like, a week.

Andrew: And like I said during 499, it’s only because of our Patreon that we are at Episode 500 today.

Eric: That’s right.

Andrew: 43,722; now, we’ve already posted this one on social media, and some people were guessing this is the number of minutes of MuggleCast.

Eric: Wow.

Andrew: But that’s not true. This is the number of emails we’ve received from listeners since November 2006, so a lot of feedback. [laughs]

Laura and Micah: Wow.

Micah: I’ve responded to all of them.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: I was going to say, should we each take 8,000 and start replying to people? Is this unread? This is read? What is this?

Andrew: No, this is all. This is everything.

Eric: Oh, okay, okay.

Andrew: Yeah, we’ve had since November 2006. And we’ve never deleted a single email, so they’re all in there.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: We should for fun some day just go back into the inbox and go to like, June 2007, and see what people were emailing us about, and then read those emails on air and finally answer them.

Micah: That’s a great idea. I think in our next mailbag episode, we should pull one from way back, and we should answer it. Legit.

Andrew: [laughs] Yeah, let’s do that every month, every time we do a Muggle Mail episode. “And now, an email we never got to 13 years ago.”

[Eric laughs]

Laura: Love it.

Andrew: Okay, next number: tens of millions. [laughs]

Eric: Wow, that’s a strict number there. Very specific.

Andrew: This is the number of downloads MuggleCast has received over the years. We don’t have an exact number because MuggleCast has been hosted on numerous platforms over the years, and we don’t have access to all those platforms anymore. But it’s safe to say… I know just on our current platform we’ve had well over 10 million downloads, and during MuggleCast’s most popular years, we’ve probably reached over 100 million downloads at this point, I would think.

Eric: Wow.

Micah: I’m just thinking back to Episode 100 that you all did in London. And I don’t remember whether it was that episode or 101, which was the analysis of Deathly Hallows episode. This was back when it was first released: It had over 100,000 downloads.

Andrew: Yeah, yeah.

Micah: And I can only imagine what they have now.

Andrew: Well, because think about that period of time. It was really before social media blew up, so you could discuss the book on MuggleNet, but where were you getting really fun reactions to the book? MuggleCast and other Harry Potter podcasts were a great resource at that time.

Eric: You’re right, there wasn’t… I mean, I don’t think there were YouTube channels the way there are YouTube channels today.

Andrew: Right.

Eric: Certainly not by any of the major, like, BuzzFeed or even Nerdist. Yeah, I think that we really covered a lot of that ground for people.

Andrew: Yeah. 773. What number is this, Eric?

Eric: [laughs] It’s an area code in Chicago, Illinois.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: 773 is the number of times that we said the word “pickle” on MuggleCast in the episodes that we have transcripts for.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Eric: Of course, this count is always going up. I would actually guess… I mean, I think, Andrew, you’re right; it probably diminished after Pickle Pack was a thing. We probably stopped saying it so many times after that.

Andrew: Right.

Eric: But we keep saying it. Eventually we’ll get “pickle” to the same tens of millions number.

[Laura laughs]

Micah: You’re at least at 776 right now, Eric.

Eric: Exactly. Pickle, pickle, pickle, pickle…

Micah: It’s just funny that we chose the word “pickle,” versus “Harry” or “Hogwarts” or “magic.”

Andrew: But pickle was a running joke on the show; that’s why I thought it was a good one.

Micah: I know.

Laura: Yeah, I do wonder, of the 773, how many of these are instances of Andrew saying, “Hello, Potter Pickles”?

Andrew: [laughs] Once, maybe twice.

Laura: Eh…

Eric: Well, the very first one… so if anyone wants to listen to Episode 54 of MuggleCast, that was the one where Andrew stunned the world by calling us all pickles. And it’s right at the beginning of this show, so that’s how you can figure it out.

Micah: And I don’t know if people know this, but since we’re talking about Pickle Pack, Andrew really created the precursor to Patreon way before its time.

Eric: Oh, yeah.

Andrew: Thanks for giving me credit again. I don’t know if I was really the one who came up with the idea for Pickle Pack, but I’ll take the credit, sure.

Micah: Just run with it.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: How much was it? Was it $25 for one year?

Andrew: $30.

Eric: It was $30, okay. It was $30 a year; we had over 140 people do that, right?

Andrew: Probably even more, no? But yeah, that was our membership to MuggleCast. And we did video blogs there, we sent everybody a T-shirt, a letter; I’m sure we posted other things. We had a special site,, and you logged into it. We did a great job on that. That was ahead of its time.

Eric: I wish we hadn’t password protected it because I can’t get into it on the Wayback Machine. I really want to see it.

Andrew: Ohh.

Laura: I hope that my blogs are banished into the abyss, because I just feel like it would be so cringy to look back on that.

Micah: Laura, your blickles.

Laura: My blickles, excuse me. My blickles.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: I have old hard drives with some of the blickles.

[Laura groans]

[Andrew laughs]

Laura: Burn them.

Eric: I’ve debated putting them up on Patreon for the last five years. I still haven’t done it because they are cringe. They’re bad.

Andrew: You should post one. I think people would be interested.

Eric: I’ll find one of the better ones, yeah.

Andrew: All right. Next number: 1,000… no, 151… 151,384. I don’t know how to say big numbers.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Apparently.

Andrew: God help us once we hit Episode 100,000. The number of followers across social media.

Eric: Did you remember to include our LinkedIn?

Andrew: [laughs] No, I didn’t.

Eric: So the number is even higher.

Micah: 151,385.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Micah, thank you for connecting with us on LinkedIn.

Andrew: We have 191 followers there, so hold on… 151,384 plus 191. Okay, updated number: 151,575. That’s the number of followers on social media.

Micah: Did you include YouTube?

Andrew: Oh, no. Darn it!

[Andrew and Micah laugh]

Eric: Did you include Parlor?

Andrew: [laughs] Nope. I can’t access that number because it is shut down.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Okay, plus 786 on YouTube. So that’s 152,361. Any others?

Micah: No, we’re good. MySpace?

Eric: This is just a rundown for the listeners of all the places that we are on social media. The MuggleCast YouTube, for instance, has things you’ve never seen before.

Andrew: Actually, MySpace is a good one, Micah. I don’t know if you can access that anymore, but I bet we had a lot of followers on MySpace back in the day.

Micah: Yeah, because that was really what was around at the time, right? I mean, Facebook was, but Twitter was just coming online, and then obviously, Instagram much later. But I do wonder what our following would have been like if these platforms had existed in full back when we were in our heyday.

Andrew: Probably much, much larger.

Micah: Millions.

Andrew: Yeah. I know we had at least one friend on MySpace; that was Myspace Tom. Miss that guy.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Eric: He’s on Twitter now?

Andrew: Is he? Okay, I’m just going to add one to our number of followers in tribute to Tom. So the grand total is 152,362. All right, zero! That’s the number of times the author of Harry Potter has been on the show.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Sad, but also not crazy sad anymore.

Laura: Eh, yeah, it’s fine.

Micah: We have had authors on the show, in fairness; just not that author.

Andrew: [laughs] Yes. All right, so this next one, I want y’all to guess: the number of minutes of MuggleCast.

Laura: Okay, I have a question. Is this all MuggleCast ever? Or is it only core episodes?

Andrew: I’m focused on core episodes only. I deleted the minis and the LeakyMugs from my playlist to calculate this total.

Laura: Okay. I’m going to say 50,000.

Eric: I just did a little bit of math. 500 episodes, and I guess the average is about 78 minutes, or an hour and 18, so I’m saying 39,000.

Micah: I’m going to go in the 40s. I’ll go 45,000.

Andrew: All right, well, if we’re playing Price Is Right rules, you all lose because you all went over the tally I have.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: But Eric was very close: 38,079 minutes. That’s over 26 days, if you played them start to finish.

Eric: Well, speaking of big projects, we actually solicited… so not for the first but the second time, we asked listeners – specifically our patrons, this time – to help us with the biggest project of them all, which was to go through… so we’ve released these next statistics one time before; it was either for Episode 250 or 300 or something like that. But we actually had listeners and patrons listen to our episodes and tell us who among the hosts was on each episode.

Andrew: Whoever is number one gets three months off.

Eric: [laughs] That would allow the rest of us to catch up, Andrew.

Andrew: Yeah, there you go.

Eric: [laughs] The award for near perfect attendance coming in at… now, this includes today, because I just went and updated the spreadsheet when we started recording. But then for the most attendance, Andrew Sims at 479 episodes of MuggleCast.

Andrew: Woohoo! Thank you, thank you. Thank you to myself for having plenty of time on my hands to rarely miss an episode of the show.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Eric: I mean, think about that, though. That’s over 16 years. You were only not here for 21 recorded episodes of MuggleCast, and the rest of us, it’s not close. It’s crazy.

Andrew: I did have, like, a ten episode head start compared to y’all.

Eric: Oh, that’s true.

Andrew: So what are the other numbers here?

Eric: Okay, well… yeah, I will say, too, that is just superb. And in many of the times when you missed an episode, you still edited that episode.

Andrew: You know, my dedication to the show just knows no bounds.

Eric: [laughs] Well, coming in next is just really the most consistent dude who’s not Andrew, and it’s not me; it is Micah. Micah came in at 429 episodes of MuggleCast.

Andrew: Congratulations, Micah.

Laura: Well done.

Micah: Thank you.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Yeah, through thick and thin, you were just always there. When the rest of us were galavanting around New Zealand and missing episodes left and right…

[Andrew and Micah laugh]

Eric: … you could be counted on.

Micah: Yes.

Andrew: So I have a year on everybody else, because there’s a gap of what, 60 episodes, it sounds like? Dang.

Micah: Well, one thing I think we should just take into consideration here – and I appreciate being the runner-up, but the runner-up is just the first loser, so…

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Andrew, he’s coming for you.

[Andrew laughs]

Micah: No, the one thing I will say is, it was mentioned that not all of us were there at the very beginning. And not only that, we used to rotate hosts early on.

Eric: Oh.

Micah: Whereas I believe…

Andrew: Except for me, apparently.

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: No, but you, Ben, and Kevin usually were always on the episode, from what I remember.

Eric: That tracks, yeah.

Andrew: Oh, okay, okay. I’m sorry, y’all. But yeah, we did have a panel of seven at one point, I think, so we really needed to rotate everybody out. It was just too big of a panel.

Laura: Oh, yeah. And I remember when we tried to have everyone on, it was just a disaster.

Andrew and Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: And an editing nightmare, so I’m glad.

Micah: We used to put a little period into Skype or something like that. Remember that?

Andrew: What?

Laura: Oh yeah, when it was your turn to talk!

Micah: When you wanted to talk.

Andrew: Oh my gosh.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Yeah. And then wasn’t it…? Ben renamed me to “Douche,” so then it said “Douche said period.”

[Andrew and Micah laugh]

Andrew: That sounds like him.

Micah: Not surprising.

Eric: Old trauma gets relived.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Eric: Well, Micah, you did us no favors by framing the runner-up as the next loser because I’m going to keep going and…

Micah: The first loser. The first.

Eric: The first loser. Yeah, okay. The second loser, then, the next runner-up, is me. You guys, this is my 400th episode of MuggleCast.

Andrew Oh, wow. What beautiful timing.

Eric: Beautiful timing. So I’ve been on 80% of all episodes. I’m thrilled to be here.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: And just behind me…

Laura: The third loser.

Eric: … at 238 episodes is Laura.

Laura: Yeah, I quit for several years and then came back.

Andrew: Quit’s not the right word. You were off on other adventures.

Laura: Well, yeah. I graduated and I was like, “Oh, I’m moving to Costa Rica. I’m not going to be able… I’m going to be teaching; I’m just not going to have the time for podcasting.” So I think I emailed you, Andrew, and I was like, “I think I’m going to have to bow out of everything.” It was a sad day.

Andrew: Yeah, that was a dark time. Yeah, I missed seeing Laura’s periods in the Skype chat.

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: The show lost its voice of reason.

Eric and Laura: Aww.

Micah: It lost its direction.

Eric: Yeah. Well, it was about 100 episodes ago that Laura became permanent again.

Laura: Yep.

Eric: So congrats, Laura. And then here’s some other fun numbers because we’re now getting into the territory of hosts that are no longer regular on the show. So the next highest numbers are Ben Schoen has 98 episodes; Jamie just behind him at 87; Kevin’s been on 54 episodes; oh, Matt Britton is right in there, 72 episodes for Matt; and then Mikey B. at 36 episodes; and Elysa at 14.

Andrew: All right. Wow. Well, I’m going to be off for the next year to give you guys a chance to catch up.

[Eric laughs]

Game: Finish the episode title

Andrew: All right, so we have another game here related to the history of the show. Eric, you were looking back at the episode titles, right?

Eric: Yeah, part of the fun of doing this spreadsheet was I actually did the listeners a favor this time and I went and put the episodes in. Originally, when we first sourced this, I did the episode number; I said, “Give me the episode title as well as when it came out.” I did that work this time with Meg. But so I have these old episode titles and I want to quiz you guys on what you think the correct title of MuggleCast was. Episode title one: “His Mother’s ______.” Your choices are “His Mother’s Eyes,” “His Mother’s Hair,” “His Mother’s Makeup,” “His Mother’s Ankles.”

Andrew: Yeah, and I’ll just add, we had some really weird episode titles back in the day. That’s part of the fun of this segment. We don’t do this anymore because for potential new listeners or current listeners, you’re looking at these and you’re like, “I have no clue what this is about. Why do I want to listen to this?”

Eric: Yeah, none of the episode titles that I found fun enough to pull are from after 402. I didn’t even leave the 400s.

Andrew: That’s when we changed, okay.

Micah: It’s all about the SEO, right, Andrew?

Andrew: Yeah, exactly, exactly. All right, so I’m going to say “His Mother’s Ankles,” because “His Mother’s Eyes” is too serious. We were probably trying to have fun, so I’m saying “Ankles.”

Laura: Yeah, it’s funny because I feel a strong sense that the answer is “Ankles.”

Eric: Well, that’s the thing; it’s dormant. It’s in our repressed memory. [laughs]

Micah: Exactly. I’m going to agree; I’m going to go with D, “Ankles.”

Eric: You guys are all correct.

Andrew: Woohoo! It’s like one of us wrote it.

Micah: One of us probably did.

Eric: Well, yeah. This is Episode 032. Episode 32.

Laura: What happened in this episode to make us call it this?

Micah: I’m going to say Ben or Jamie and just leave it at that.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Eric: Okay, next one: “Order of ______.” Is it “Fries,” “Order of Micah,” “Order of Toast,” and “Order of Canon”?

Andrew: I’m going to say “Fries.” We were probably talking about Order of the Phoenix and somebody accidentally said fries or something.

Micah: I’m going with the “Order of Micah.”

Laura: Yeah, I have a strong sense that it’s “Micah.”

Andrew: The Force is strong with Laura this morning. Or is it?

Eric: Yep, it sure is. It’s “Order of Micah.”

Andrew: Wow, okay.

Eric: Yeah, that’s Episode 211.

Laura: Look at all these repressed memories coming back.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Eric: Okay, next title: “______ 2009.” Is it “Azkatraz 2009,” “Cascada 2009…”

Micah: Jesus.

[Laura laughs]

Eric: “Best of 2009…” We had some functional titles even back then. Best of, Year in Review… or “BobFail 2009”?

Micah: [laughs] I’m going with “BobFail.”

Andrew: Yeah, I’m pretty sure it was “BobFail.”

Eric: It’s too random; I wouldn’t have come up with that alone. [laughs] Do you guys remember why “BobFail”?

Andrew: Was there a Bob on the set of one of the movies?

Eric: I think so.

Andrew: And we were like, “That’s a Bob fail.” It says in the shownotes, “The term BobFail is created on the show as Micah tells the story of putting a USA Today writer in his place.”

Micah: What?

Andrew: So maybe a USA Today writer wrote something incorrect about a Harry Potter movie or book?

Micah: I do not remember doing that, but nice. I’ll have to go back and listen.

Eric: Okay, next title: “Fluffy and the ______.” “Fluffy and the Hydrant,” “Fluffy and the Pokéflute,” “Fluffy and the Sax Solo,” and “Fluffy and the Pillow”?

Andrew: I think it’s B.

Laura: It’s the “Pokéflute.”

Micah: “Pokéflute,” yeah.

Eric: Of course it’s the “Pokéflute.”

[Laura laughs]

Micah: Well, the reason I remember that is because I want to say that we made comparisons to Snorlax and waking Fluffy up the way you wake Snorlax up.

Andrew: Definitely.

Eric: Quite apt. This is a hard one intentionally: “Spiders, Vampires, ______, and Wizards.” Kind of a long title.

Andrew: This is a hard one.

Laura: Yeah, I don’t know.

Eric: Yeah. Is it “Books,” “Lords,” “Werewolves,” or “Centaurs”?

Andrew: I’m going to say “Werewolves.”

Micah: I’ll go with…

Laura: I’ll do “Centaurs.”

Micah: “Centaurs,” yeah.

Eric: Wow. Okay, we’re all wrong.

[Laura laughs]

Micah: All right. Finally.

Eric: The correct answer… and Laura and Micah were on this episode. I checked.

Laura: So we should remember. [laughs]

Andrew: No excuses, yeah.

Eric: Yeah, it’s Episode 139. I was not on it; I can’t say why it’s called that. But “Spiders, Vampires, Lords, and Wizards” was the correct title.

Andrew: Okay, no clue why it was titled that.

Eric and Laura: Yeah.

Eric: I’m glad that… well, you probably discussed, you know, creepy things.

Andrew: I guess so.

Eric: Like lords.

Laura: And it sounds like we were trying to come up with a more serious title.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: It was the beginning of search engine optimization. “What can we do?” Okay, second to last game round: “Midnight ______.” “Midnight Son,” “Midnight Spells,” “Midnight Squib,” “Midnight Serenade”?

Andrew: I’m going to say “Son,” S-O-N. Maybe it was a Twilight reference to Midnight Sun, S-U-N?

Micah: I’m going to say “Squib.”

Laura: Yeah, that’s what I’m drawn to as well, and I don’t know why.

Eric: Well, it’s right. “Midnight Squib,” Episode 263.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Eric: You guys are good at this game.

Laura: It’s because we know ourselves. We’re looking back 15 years ago and thinking about what we thought was funny at the time.

Eric: [laughs] Yeah, I mean, that was March 27, 2013, so eight years ago.

Laura: Oh, I wasn’t even on that then! How do I know this?

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: But you still know us well.

Eric: Yeah, it was Andrew, Ben, me, and Micah. Okay, so this next one and the last one; round seven of this game. “Laura” has appeared in the title of MuggleCast episodes multiple times, so the question now is: Which one of these is not a MuggleCast title? So the title is “Laura ______.” Which one is it not? “Laura’s Questions,” “Laura’s Pants,” “Laura Leaves,” and “Laura Gambon.”

Laura: Okay, so we all know, yeah, “Laura’s Pants” is real. I’m pretty sure “Laura Gambon” is real?

Micah: Yeah, I think so.

Laura: I’ve been the staunch defender of Michael Gambon for years.

Andrew: And we were like, [in an obnoxious voice] “Why don’t you marry him?” Probably.

Laura: Yeah, and I was like, “Okay!”

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: I don’t know.

Micah: I’m going to say C…

Andrew: “Laura Leaves”?

Micah: … because I don’t know that we’d be as direct to be like, “Laura’s gone.”

Andrew: Yeah. “Laura’s Questions” rings a bell for me, too, so I’m going to say “Leaves” as well.

Laura: Yeah. I also just feel like that would be such a weird title. So yeah, I think it was C.

Eric: Well, I actually just looked this up, and the last major episode you were on before big hiatus was 187, “Magic Is Muscle,” or 181, “Nothing Less than Ultimate.”

[Laura laughs]

Eric: These titles are not any less weird than “Laura Leaves.” But anyway, yes. So Episode 79 of MuggleCast is “Laura Gambon.” Episode 97 is “Laura’s Pants.” There’s actually “Laura’s Pants, Part 2” like, 100 episodes later.

[Micah laughs]

Laura: Oh, yeah.

Eric: And 115 is “Laura’s Questions.” We did not have an episode titled “Laura Leaves,” and I’ll tell you what, I pray to God that we never do.

[Andrew laughs]

Laura: Aww, shucks.

Micah: That was fun.

Andrew: All right, so a bit of news before we get to some Valentine’s Day-related content. Just wanted to mention that Fantastic Beasts 3 has actually paused filming again, after a cast member tested positive for COVID. Now, interestingly, they were seemingly only a couple days away from finishing. And there’s rumors that it may have been an actual cast member, and maybe a prominent cast member, who tested positive for COVID. It’s kind of crazy that they were so close to finishing filming, and then had the pause. So now the movie is going to be pushed back another year.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: August 2025.

Micah: This is their lost episode.

Potter Pickup Lines

Andrew: So now that we’re approaching Valentine’s Day, we thought we could have a little fun and get people ready for the Hallmark holiday. Maybe your loved one is really into Harry Potter, or maybe you want to meet somebody who loves Harry Potter as much as you do. And how do you do that? You prepare some Harry Potter pickup lines. We found our favorites. If you like any of these, feel free to write them down. But I’m going to set the mood first.

[Sensual mood music plays]

[Laura laughs]

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: You must be a Snitch, because I’ve been Seeking you my whole life.

Laura: Ooh, yeah.

Micah: Well, you must play Quidditch. I know a Keeper when I see one.

Laura: You’re what Amortentia smells like to me.

Eric: You know, you don’t have to say “Lumos” to turn me on.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: Did you just use the Stupefy charm? Or are you a natural stunner?

Micah: Are you a Dementor? Because you take my breath away.

Laura: Baby, are you a Horcrux? Because you’ve got a piece of my soul.

Eric: You don’t need Expelliarmus; your smile is disarming enough.

Andrew: I am very interested in exploring your Chamber of Secrets.

Laura: Oh my God.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Andrew: What?

Micah: Well done.

Eric: I knew that had to be in there somewhere.

Laura: Yeah, I know. It’s just, that’s a throwback.

Andrew: That’s the mild version of that.

Micah: Yeah, it really is.

Eric: The other one is, what, “Mind if I Slytherin?”

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: Basilisk, yeah. Is this the Hogwarts Express? Because it feels like you and I are headed somewhere magical.

Laura: On a scale of one to ten, you’re nine and three quarters.

Andrew: If I heard that one, I’d be like, “What is stopping you from calling me…?”

Eric: “What can I do for that other one quarter?”

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Laura: It’s one of those pickup lines that’s like, lightly insulting.

Andrew: [laughs] Is it?

Laura: Yeah, I think so.

Eric: When I look into the Mirror of Erised, I see you giving me your number.

Andrew: My love for you burns like a dying phoenix.

[Eric laughs]

Micah: If I wear my Invisibility Cloak, could I visit your Restricted Section tonight?

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Laura: Girl, you’re finer than the difference between a hex and a curse.

Eric: I need a happy memory to conjure a Patronus. Will you kiss me real quick?

Andrew: You may be a Muggle, but mm, that body is magical.

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: Hagrid is not the only giant on campus, if you catch my drift.

Andrew: I like the extra “if you catch my drift.” [laughs] Like, yeah, we definitely know where you’re going with that.

Eric: Yeah, we got it. We got it. And this episode now has an R rating, thank you very much.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Laura: I may not be the Boy Who Lived, but I can still be your Chosen One.

Eric: Aw, you said that all hopeful at the end there.

Laura: I tried to pick G-rated items because I knew you guys were going to get dirty.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Me too. You know, when I said “Accio hottie,” I didn’t think it would actually work.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Girl, are you a Death Eater? Because Azka-DAMN!

Andrew: [laughs] Yeah, we do try to be family friendly on the show when I was looking for pickup lines. Oh my gosh, there are some hilarious ones that are really inappropriate. Maybe another time we’ll do those.

Eric: Maybe bonus MuggleCast.

Laura: Yeah, behind the paywall.

[Sensual mood music ends]

Discussion: Popular headcanon ships

Laura: Well, I thought that we could, in recognition of Valentine’s Day, talk about some of the most popular alternate universe or headcanon Harry Potter ships. A ship refers to a relationship. This is very big in the fan fiction community; if you’re sorting through different original stories, you can look based on the ship. And I picked a few of the most popular ones for us to talk about, but I thought that we could consider them and think about where in the series their turning point could have been to actually make these relationships a reality.

Andrew: Okay.

Eric: I love this.

Laura: So we’re going to start with Drarry, Draco and Harry. This is one of the most popular ones.

Andrew: Yes.

Laura: On its face, it definitely seems like one that is kind of hard to imagine, because you’re…

Andrew: How dare you?

Laura: [laughs] What do you mean, how dare me?

Andrew: No, no.

Laura: Because Draco is really horrible to Harry throughout the series.

Eric: Yeah, they hate each other.

Laura: Yeah, they hate each other! But you know what they say, thin line between love and hate, I guess.

Eric: And opposites attract and any number of used phrases.

Laura: Something that I’ve seen represented in some fan fiction is Harry developing more of an awareness that Draco is just another victim of the wizarding war, and we definitely see this in the books. But I think that this represents how a turning point for Harry and Draco could be Harry realizing at the end of Half-Blood Prince that he actually doesn’t have the capacity to kill anyone, and he’s just in way over his head. And then also, Draco refusing to turn Harry over in Deathly Hallows, even though he knew it was him.

Andrew: Something I’m also thinking about is especially in the later books, Draco is having a rough time killing Dumbledore, that little thing, and then doing what Voldemort and his father want him to do. And I actually think in a weird way, him and Harry could bond over their struggles.

Laura: Yeah.

Andrew: Draco wants to be a good guy. At the end of the day, he does get redeemed, and that redemption maybe could have started a little sooner with the help of Harry.

Laura: It feels like Draco doesn’t quite get the redemption arc that I think some people were hoping he was going to get. I mean, we see that he and Harry nod at each other in acknowledgement at King’s Cross in the epilogue, but there’s never a moment of true sort of acknowledgement, I guess, until Cursed Child when Drake is teaming up with the trio.

Eric: Yeah, I mean, I think there’s only so much acknowledgement you can have and self-awareness at 17, so the only time they were going to get it was at the epilogue. But I think Draco, after the events of Book 7, would have realized how much of a shit he was to Harry and may have shown up and apologized in a big way.

Laura: I would hope so.

Eric: It was fan fiction that really convinced me that this ship was plausible and had merit, even within the years of Hogwarts that they’re dating. There’s some good Drarry fic out there.

Micah: I like, Andrew, what you said about them bonding over their circumstances, particularly as it relates to Voldemort. I mean, Draco is being used by Voldemort, and then Harry obviously has a fight ahead of him against Voldemort, so the two of them could have potentially worked together. And then Laura, you mentioned the saving him in Deathly Hallows. If he doesn’t, Draco probably dies in that room.

Andrew: Yeah, 100%.

Micah: So I mean, a whole saving each other thing; Narcissa saves Harry at the end of Deathly Hallows, so there’s a lot for them to talk about.

Andrew: After Harry saved Draco, Draco could have been like, “On a scale of one to ten, you’re a nine and three quarters.”

[Laura and Micah laugh]

Eric: I will say, there’s a lot of fan fiction where after Hogwarts… because there’s also a thing about only having of age characters, too, in fanfic, so a lot of it is placed after Hogwarts. But there’s a lot of fanfic where Harry goes to America and he’s in a Starbucks and he recognizes the server, the barista, and it’s Draco.

Andrew: [laughs] What? What?

Laura: I have never read this fan fiction. [laughs]

Andrew: Give me one of those.

Eric: Absolutely a thing, yeah.

Andrew: Wow.

Laura: So as part of his redemption arc, Draco is like, “I’m going to go work a Muggle service industry job”?

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: I guess so.

Andrew: Oh my gosh. Sign me up.

Laura: I mean, I would read this.

Eric: Because it’s the love in unexpected places, right? So Harry is on a work trip or something and then he’s like, “Oh, Draco, I haven’t thought about you in years. What have you been up to?”

Andrew: Wow.

Laura: Yeah. I think also, something like this could be interesting because it does speak to, I think, what is something that’s really common for all of us, which is that everyone grows up, including our childhood bullies. I don’t know if anyone’s ever run into a high school bully, now 15 years after we’ve all been out of school, and realize, “Oh, they’re pretty much just a normal human being at this point.” So it speaks to the ability of growth and improvement.

Eric: It’s kind of like they survived Hogwarts together, because Hogwarts itself is such a security nightmare.

Laura: And they’re like, “Let’s send our kids there.”

Eric: [laughs] It’s still the only school. It’s the best education they’re going to get.

Laura: Right. So moving on to this one – and I’m going to be honest with you, this is one that I’ve really never gotten, but I don’t want to disparage it because I know that there are people who have feelings about it – Dramione, Draco/Hermione. This is one that I always found it hard to get on board with, just because not only does he bully her, but he uses blood status slurs against her. And it’s just really hard for me to see how, at least in a school setting, these two would be able to get past that. Not to say it couldn’t happen, but…

Eric: Yeah. Again, they hate each other, right? So it’s like, “How are these two things…?” I will say, I’ve said this before, and I think there’s some kind of understanding that Draco and Hermione are nearly equals academically. I think it’s based on that line Lucius says to Draco in Borgin and Burke about “You let this Muggle-born girl exceed you in academia, in your tests,” but if that’s true, then Draco is actually probably a hardworking student, and so there’s a line of similarity between the two of them. He is certainly a git, he is certainly very vile, actually, with his criticisms, but I can see it working, especially in the way that fanfic takes it. They kind of… I don’t want to say they gloss over it, but he kind of ends up being a more charismatic, rich, sassy Ron character. He’s wittier than Ron, he’s higher-class than Ron, and so his sarcasm and his insults are seen as having more weight and being more playful, kind of the way that you throw rocks at the girl you love kind of a thing. That’s the Draco/Hermione thing for me.

Laura: Yeah.

Andrew: I do think Draco is a very smart kid; it’s just not highlighted much in the books because other elements of him have to be focused on. So I can see Draco and Hermione getting along from an academic perspective. [laughs] “Hey, this NEWT class, am I right?”

Eric: Study buddies.

Andrew: Study buddies, yeah.

Micah: Do you think, though, a lot of that pairing was born out of the films versus the books? Or was it always there? Laura may know.

Laura: So there are definitely a lot of influence from before the movies in the fan fiction community for this one. There’s also a lot of influence for Snape and Hermione from pre-movies, which is very uncomfortable, and why it was not included in this list. But I think that these pairings speak to maybe some taboos. And also, perhaps the Hermione and Draco pairing specifically speaks to people trying to give Draco his redemption arc through a relationship with Hermione, which I don’t love because it’s not her job to save him.

Andrew and Micah: Right.

Laura: That’s his job. But I get it; I understand why it exists. And I would love to hear from some Dramione shippers to tell us a little more about this, because I’m sure it’s more than just that.

Micah: There’s always that angle, though, too, right, of the girl being with the bad boy, but Draco isn’t really the bad boy; he’s just kind of a douche.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: Exactly.

Eric: Well, I mean, if they were adults and this was modern day, we’d be like, “Oh, honey, he called you a racial slur? No, you gotta dump it. Don’t even effs with that. You’re much better.” But actually, no, I remember this; I saw Emma Watson actually had a crush on Tom Felton when they were filming the first couple of movies.

Micah: That’s why I asked about the movie piece.

Eric and Laura: Yeah.

Eric: She revealed on The Jonathan Ross Show; she says she had a big crush on Tom Felton when she was a preteen. Here’s a quote: “Between the ages of 10 and 12, I had a really terrible crush on Tom Felton. We love a bad guy, and he was a few years older, and he had a skateboard.”

Andrew: Ooh, a skateboard!

[Eric laughs]

Laura: Yeah, you know what, though? These people were all pre-adolescent and growing up together, so I’m sure they all had crushes on each other at some point.

Andrew: True.

Eric: Yeah, I agree.

Laura: Speaking of one that I think… it did exist pre-movies, but I think the movies really exaggerated its influence: Harmony, which is Harry/Hermione. Obviously, in the movies, they picked up on something that could have been possible when Harry and Hermione were living alone in the tent, which, I’m not mad at it, but it definitely felt more like they were picking up on the strong chemistry that Dan and Emma had as opposed to this really being a Harry and Hermione thing.

Eric: Yeah. And I think when you read the books, you really start to love Hermione, and I think that depending on how you read the books and how you see Ron’s character, you want her to end up with somebody better than Ron, and so Harry is right there. And in this friend group, I think people just developed a preference, and if they weren’t as sympathetic to Ron seeing how he just needed some support and was really funny, you put her with Harry instead as you’re reading the books for the first time. Let’s not forget…

Andrew: Plus, the assumption as a reader was always that Hermione was going to end up either with Harry or Ron. I think that was always a safe bet. So like you said, Eric, it was personal preference. And there weren’t hints very strongly either way, I don’t think. It was just kind of a coin toss.

Laura: There were pretty strong hints with Ron and Hermione. That was…

Andrew: Early on? Well, maybe in the later books.

Eric: Well, the Yule Ball, right? She says, “Next time muster up the courage to ask me yourself.”

Laura: Yeah, that was the first big one. And just honestly – and feel free to correct me if I’m wrong, or if other people feel differently, if you have different interpretations – but I just genuinely, in the original source material of these books, I never got a vibe that there was any interest between these two. Not to say that there aren’t ways that you could make that work in fan fiction; I definitely think that you can. And I think it’s a valid pairing for people to like, just because Harry and Hermione do have so much in common; they’re both pretty mature, and they showed in Book 7 how well they can work together, right? So I think you can make the argument that these two would maybe have a healthier relationship than Ron and Hermione.

Eric: Oh, yeah.

Micah: And I’m trying to remember, what movie is it where Harry is having a conversation with Dumbledore about Hermione? Dumbledore brings her up and he basically passes on it and just says, “Oh, we’re friends,” or “She’s like a sister,” or something to that effect.

Eric: I think it’s Movie 6. I think he’s like, “Oh, well, that Granger girl I’ve seen you with,” and he’s like, “No, sir.”

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Because wasn’t there a line…? That was how we found that Dumbledore was gay, or Steve Kloves found it out first because there was this line where they were going to have Michael Gambon talk to Harry about girls, and then Rowling had to be like, “Oh, actually, guys…”

Andrew: Oh yeah, right.

Eric: So they knew before it actually came out. Before Dumbledore came out. [laughs]

Andrew: Right. I’m pretty sure there’s a photo of the note that Rowling made on the script.

Laura: Oh, really? To be honest, I don’t see why Dumbledore wouldn’t be able to talk to Harry about girls.

Eric: Like general aesthetic attraction, or…

Andrew and Laura: Yeah.

Andrew: I give Laura girl advice all the time. All the time.

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Laura: Yeah, I mean, it’s true. [laughs]

Micah: The one thing I thought was probably just worth mentioning before we wrap this up is that J.K. Rowling did kind of walk back Ron and Hermione in a statement that she made just a couple of years ago at this point.

Andrew: That blew up the fandom.

Eric: The Wonderland article.

Micah: Yeah, when she said that Harry and Hermione probably would have made more sense.

Andrew and Laura: Yeah.

Laura: I hated this when it happened.

Andrew: A lot of people did.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Laura: Yeah, well, because it just felt like retconning, but also, it really feels like Ron has been robbed of the things that make him a good character. I love Rupert Grint; I think his casting as Ron was brilliant, but I felt that the way Ron was portrayed in the movies was so wrong. They turned him into comic relief, they took all of his great lines and gave them to Hermione to make her the perfect character, and I just feel like over the years, Ron has been robbed of any ability to grow and develop. So of course, Ron was a stupid teenage boy in a lot of respects in the books, but when all these years later you step out and say, “Yeah, Hermione and Ron would have had a toxic relationship,” you’re robbing Ron of the ability to get better and grow.

Andrew: Definitely.

Eric: Yeah, but at a certain point, that same author agreed that people who ship Harry and Hermione are delusional.

Laura: Yes. [laughs]

Eric: But it’s a trajectory, right? These things… we grow; we reassess. I don’t think there’s a right or wrong answer there.

Laura: No, I don’t think so. I know somebody must feel very seriously about this one because of the note, but the ship is Remus and Sirius. This has always been a really, really big ship in the fan fiction community. So who made the “Wolfstar 5eva” note here?

Andrew: Had to be Eric.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Eric: Actually, it was the most awkward experience of my life, discovering that this was a thing. And it’s because it was the on Harry Potter Fan Trips when we saw the third Harry Potter film. My chaperone – because I was 16, but I needed a chaperone to go on the trip – was this woman named Catherine, who later wrote for MuggleNet, and she was the world’s biggest Wolfstar shipper. And so we were watching the scene where Gary Oldman is hugging David Thewlis tightly and saying, “This is your heart,” and “I know you,” or whatever. Anyway, next to me is the loudest squee…

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Eric: And she just sits up on the edge of her seat and is like… [squeals]

[Laura laughs]

Micah: Wow.

Eric: And I’m like, “What is going on here?” And she’s like, “It’s Wolfstar! They’re together!” And it’s like, “Wow.” And all these years later, I can’t deny that there are a lot of overtones in Prisoner of Azkaban the movie, the Cuarón film, for Remus and Sirius. There’s a whole other level, “You’d know all about the madness within, wouldn’t you, Remus?” kind of a thing.

[Laura laughs]

Eric: So yeah, it’s some serious stuff. But actually, I have since come to really feel as though Wolfstar is the most canon-compliant ship, the most canon-compliant gay ship that exists in Harry Potter. I think that Remus has a weakness; Remus has low self-esteem, and it’s the group of his friends that really allow him to grow and see his potential. But James is with Lily. Sirius was never really with anybody; Sirius was never really described in the books as being with anybody. So where there’s a vacuum, where there’s space, readers are going to put things in and assume that Remus and Sirius could have grown pretty close.

Laura: Yeah, I’ve seen a lot of interpretations in fan fiction that these characters’ moments would be when Sirius was trying to trick Snape into going to the Whomping Willow and James saves Snape, and then Remus and Sirius have a big falling-out because Remus is super pissed that Sirius did this, and in all of that drama and commotion, it comes out, and that’s where their relationship gets started. So there’s a lot of really great writing out there that focuses on the potential of this relationship during their Hogwarts years.

Micah: Right. Well, do you think it would be more when they’re transformed, or when they’re actual humans? Or both?

Eric: I think that’s part of it, having this secret life that you share together, right? So roaming the grounds at night, can you imagine how fun that must be? So I think for the two of them, it could have been more like… I don’t know about dating. But there’s also the issue of whether Remus is himself when he’s werewolf, but still, yeah, I think it was all over.

Laura: Yeah, I agree.

Micah: The other thing that came to mind with Remus was I remember from Prisoner of Azkaban when he’s talking with Harry on the bridge, there’s kind of an allusion to something potentially between Remus and Lily, just the way he talks about her. And I think we eventually learned that it’s more just due to her kindness as a human being towards him, but it seemed like he was reflecting back on something that may have been a bit romantic, maybe just from his end.

Eric: Yeah, Rowling’s comments actually said, “There’s a moment in the third Harry Potter film where Remus talks to Harry. It’s not a scene in the books, but he touches on something that’s so, so crucial to events of the seventh book.” And she said that in advance of the seventh book coming out, and so a lot of people were like, “Wow, was Remus romantically involved with Lily?”

Laura: Yeah, and I will say, it’s also a really common thing to see in fan fiction to have Lily be with a different Marauder before she gets with James. So I’ve seen multiple versions of stories that have her paired up with Sirius, or have her paired up with Remus… I’ve never seen one where she’s paired up with Peter.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: But it’s always the precursor to she and James getting together. And I don’t know, sometimes it goes down some weird paths, but yeah, it’s definitely interesting,

Micah: Peter is just playing with his wand in the corner.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Laura: But also, I mean, it’s not an unrealistic thing. Think about when we were in high school. It wasn’t uncommon for people to date around their friend groups.

Eric: Yeah, that seems like… looking back, I see how problematic that is, and was, for hurt feelings and things like that. Like, you don’t shit where you eat. But teenagers do it all the time.

Laura: Yep. So this is my favorite headcanon one: Huna, and it’s Harry/Luna. So 14-year-old me, when Order of the Phoenix came out, I was convinced that Harry and Luna were going to get together, just because they share so many deep experiences surrounding being outsiders, and then grief over the loss of at least one parent. And you really see Harry at the end of Order of the Phoenix gaining an appreciation for the way Luna exists in the world and thinks about and perceives things, and I thought this would be a really interesting pairing, because Luna is such a unique character. And y’all know how I feel about Ginny. And I just feel like Luna is so multifaceted that this could be a really interesting pairing.

Andrew: Huna Huna!

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: I’m curious, why didn’t you go with Larry? Why is it Huna?

Andrew: Larry? Because then it sounds like a person.

Micah: I know. Just joking.

Laura: Well, also, the ship is just called Huna.

Micah: Huna Huna. I like it.

Andrew: I like this one. I think we were reflecting on this when we were doing our Order of the Phoenix reread as well. I really loved the arc that… Harry at the beginning of the book is obviously like, “What a weirdo.”

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: And then by the end, like you said, Laura, he finally sees Luna’s potential and what she stands for, and that they actually have a lot in common.

Eric: Yeah. Here’s a girl who comes out of nowhere and teaches Harry to see the world a little bit differently. Pure beginnings of romance there.

Laura: Well, and she doesn’t care what other people think of her.

Andrew: Yeah, which is what Harry needs.

Laura: Yeah, I love Harry, but he cares a little too much what people think of him sometimes. And it just seemed like there was a lot of potential here. I totally understood when this didn’t happen in the books. I was a little bit peeved when they suggested that Neville and Luna got together in the movie, because I was like, “Oh my God, this is so predictable, taking the weird kids in school and putting them together.” But this is forever my one true pairing, Harry and Luna.

Micah: I like it.

Laura: And then there’s another one that’s pretty popular; it’s Luna and Ginny. It’s called Linny. I like this one because again, I think similar to Harry and Luna, it pairs people who are different in a lot of ways but also have a lot in common with regard to their connection to death, just because of Ginny being possessed by Voldemort and everything, and Luna’s openness towards considering things that are maybe outside of the mainstream. And I like the idea of the banter that would happen between these two.

Eric: Yeah, I mean, in terms of where it happened or when it occurred, I can only think of the canon examples that we have. If I were trying to defend Linny and say it was canon, I would point out that Ginny introduced Luna to the group. She’s the one who is like, “Oh, yeah, I know this girl, and people call her Loony, but she’s cool. She’s in my grade and she’s in Ravenclaw.” I think there’s more brewing there. They would have interacted when they had classes together. And also, Ginny often defends people in her grade from making fun of Luna; there’s a line in there somewhere about that. So she is always one to come to Luna’s rescue a little bit and say, “No, she’s all right. You’ve got to hear her out. She’s interesting.” She sees the value in Luna sooner than everyone else, and I think that may be due to having feelings for this person.

Laura: Yeah, I think you could make a case for that in a fan fiction, and certainly, there are plenty examples of this out there. A lot of them, at least the ones that I’ve seen, seem to pair them up post-Hogwarts, so in some sort of alternate universe where Harry and Ginny don’t get together. So yeah, I like it. But we want to hear about y’all’s favorite pairings, and if you have any great fan fictions you’d like to send our way, we’d be interested in looking at those too.

Eric: Yeah, we’re getting some recommendations in the livestream on Patreon.

Laura: Heck yeah! Thanks, guys.

Quiz: Which Hogwarts House is your soulmate in?

Andrew: I thought we could do this Buzzfeed quiz together: Which Hogwarts House is your soulmate in?

Micah: All right.

Andrew: And Buzzfeed has a fun feature where we can actually…

Micah: Andrew, you’re right here.

Andrew: [laughs] … where we can actually take a quiz together. So I want you three to click that link in the doc. Okay, so the first question: What’s your Hogwarts House? So everybody just pick your normal answer.

Micah: Got it.

Laura: Ravenclaw.

Andrew: Slytherin.

Eric: Hufflepuff.

Andrew: What’s your favorite class at Hogwarts? I’m going to say Defense Against the Dark Arts.

Eric: Oh, Transfiguration all the way.

Laura: Same. Transfiguration.

Eric: Yeah, if you can get good at it, that would be the coolest class of all time.

Andrew: Which character would you bring back from the dead? And the options are Fred, Sirius, Remus, or Dobby.

Laura: Ohh, Dobby.

Andrew: Yeah, they have such a sad picture of Dobby, too, so I feel like you have to click him.

Eric: I’m picking Sirius.

Micah: Picking Remus.

Andrew: I’m saying Dobby as well. Which Harry Potter sweet would you eat? Chocolate Frogs, Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans, Cauldron Cakes, or Licorice Wands.

Laura: Chocolate Frogs.

Eric: You can’t go wrong with chocolate.

Laura: All the way.

Andrew: Yeah, I’m saying the frogs too.

Micah: I’ll go with the beans. They’re good for your heart.

Andrew: Which character do you most relate to? The options are Harry, Ron, Hermione, or Luna.

Eric: Gosh.

Laura: Luna. 100%.

Micah: Luna.

Eric: I might say Harry.

Andrew: I’m going to say Harry too. Lastly, who do you want your soulmate to be most like?

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: I hope this answer doesn’t heavily weigh…

Eric: Heavily weighted, yeah. This is like those Houses quizzes that are like, “Are you feeling snaky?”

Andrew: I’m going to say I want my soulmate to be most like Draco; I’m sorry.

Eric: I say Ginny.

Laura: What about Draco makes you want…?

Andrew: Well, he’s a good-looking dude. He is smart, as we spoke about today. He’s got some things going for him.

Micah: I’ll go with Fred.

Laura: I’ll say Luna; that’s of these people.

Eric: I got Gryffindor!

Andrew: All right. Are you happy with that?

Eric: I’m dating a Ravenclaw.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: But are you happy with that?

Eric: I’m very happy with dating the Ravenclaw that I am dating.

Micah: I got Ravenclaw.

Andrew: Okay, and Micah, you are a Ravenclaw, right?

Micah: Yep.

Andrew: So are you pleased by that? Do you want to date somebody in your own House?

Micah: Yeah, sure.

Andrew: All right. I got Slytherin, and I am in Slytherin. [sighs] So yeah, I guess I feel like my Draco answer at the end really weighed my result. But I guess I want that. I definitely didn’t want Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw. I was hoping for Gryffindor.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Laura: Well, I got Ravenclaw as my answer. I also am a Ravenclaw. But my life partner is a Slytherin, so I guess we’ve got some things to talk about.

[Andrew laughs]

Andrew: All right. Well, Eric and Laura have some things to work – actually, I do, too, because I’m with a Gryffindor. Well, I did say wanted a Gryffindor answer. Hmm. I think I’m going to believe this quiz and just say I should be with a Slytherin. Darn. Downloading Tinder now…

Eric: And we’re ending relationships. [laughs] To celebrate Valentine’s this year, the MuggleCast hosts, 75% broke up with their current relationships.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: And we downloaded Tinder and we said, “You must be a… this House.”

Laura: [laughs] No, but this is so boring. I don’t want my partner to be in my same House. That’s so boring.

Andrew: Yeah, something nice about relationships are the differences you have with somebody else. Yeah, I agree. And I probably shouldn’t be with a Slytherin because they would probably go and cheat on me or something like that.

[Eric laughs]

Laura: Aren’t you a Slytherin?

Andrew: Yeah, uh… all right, so moving on. It’s time for Quizzitch.

[Laura laughs]


[Quizzitch music plays]

Eric: Last week’s question: What statue resides next to the Prefect’s Bathroom? The correct answer is Boris the Bewildered. Correct answers were submitted by Katie Jane; Ning Chi; Asha Clark Watson; Time-Traveling Unicorn; Lance Dance; HallowWolf; Bort Voldemort; Zoom Tarot; Really Reardon; Ellie Friga; Ex-Nigerian; Nadia; Stephanie; Jason; Robbie; Stacy; and The Seas. And for next week: How far did Harry throw the gnome that bit him?

Micah: Nice. How appropriate for Valentine’s Day.

[Andrew laughs]

Micah: That’s my one true pairing: Harry and the garden gnome.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Laura: Love at first bite.

Eric: Submit your correct answer to us over on Twitter; use #Quizzitch and reply at @MuggleCast. We got a DM with a correct answer and I ignored it.

Andrew: [laughs] Oh my God, Eric.

Micah: Wow. You’re rough, dude.

[Laura laughs]

Andrew: Ringo Starr wants to help you out, Eric.

[Ringo Starr audio clip plays]

Ringo: “This is a serious message to everybody watching my update right now. Peace and love, peace and love.”

[Andrew laughs]

Ringo: “I want to tell you, please, after the 20th of October, do not send fan mail to any address that you have. Nothing will be signed after the 20th of October. If that has a date on the envelope, it’s going to be tossed. I’m warning you with peace and love. I have too much to do.”

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Ringo: “So no more fan mail. Thank you, thank you. And no objects to be signed, nothing. Anyway, peace and love, peace and love.”

[Ringo Starr audio clip ends]

Andrew: Twitter replies only! Nothing else! Peace and love, peace and love, peace and love.

Eric: [reciting fondly] “I’m warning you with peace and love.”

[Andrew laughs]

Laura: So basically what this means is that people can still DM you until October 20.

[Eric laughs]

Micah: Or email or voicemail.

Andrew: Nothing!

Eric: All right, shout-out to Cyrillic Martin, who DM’d the correct answer to Quizzitch the last two weeks in a row.

Micah: There you go.

Andrew: Oh, you just opened the floodgates, though. Now everybody is going to hit up our DMs. Slide into those DMS. They should, for Valentine’s Day.

Micah: Look, Ringo left himself open, though; he should have said a year, because now, depending on when you play that…

Eric: [laughs] It’s not October 20 yet!

Micah: It’s not October 20 yet.

Andrew: “I’m warning you with peace and love, peace and love, peace and love, peace and love.” And he’s putting up the peace sign too. You know he loves them, but please stop. “I don’t want to sign anything anymore.” That was actually pretty nice of Ringo to sign anything that was sent in to his mailbox.

Eric: Can you imagine? Yeah, I mean, carpal tunnel is a real condition. [laughs]

Andrew: Yeah, but I mean, he’s a Beatle. I bet he got a ton of mail he was signing. All right, well, thanks, everybody, for joining us today for our 500th episode. Here’s to 500 more. I’m moderately confident that we’ll one day hit Episode 1,000, especially if we have a Harry Potter TV series or eight in our future.

Eric: Oh yeah, TV series would be perfect for that. I see us going to about 777.

Andrew: Oh, that would be appropriate. Until then, if you have any feedback about today’s discussion, you can email or use the contact form on

Micah: Unless it’s Quizzitch. Then you just have to use Twitter.

Andrew: Yes, peace and love, peace and love. Or you can call us, 1-920-3-MUGGLE. No Quizzitch answers that way, please; peace and love, peace and love. Or send a voice memo to Again, no Quizzitch that way, either; peace and love, peace and love. We’d also appreciate if you took a minute to rate or review us on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to MuggleCast, and thank you to everybody who does review us. One person was critical of my impersonations last week; they thought they were a little offensive, but that person did still give us five stars, so I appreciate that, and your feedback has been taken into account.

Eric: And before October 20 of this year… you know what, I want to remind people that they can still send snail mail to the MuggleCast P.O. box, which is located at 4044 North Lincoln Avenue in Chicago, 60618. And send your love and not Quizzitch answers there.

Andrew: Peace and love, peace and love.

Eric: Peace and love.

Andrew: You can follow us on social media as well. We are @MuggleCast on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn. All of these options help us grow our numbers so that the next time we look at MuggleCast by the numbers, we have some bigger numbers to share with everybody.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: And also, we would love your support on Patreon, Again, we’re at Episode 500 today thanks to our patrons, and thanks to everybody who’s tuned in this morning joining us for our 500th episode. And we have this new AMA feature as well; we just launched this a week ago. One of the four MuggleCasters here are going to do an Ask Me Anything each month on video, and that’s a really fun new feature that we’re looking forward to rolling out. Eric already did the first one, and I saw a lot of great feedback.

Eric: Should we announce who’s coming this month?

Andrew: I think we don’t know, genuinely. Who wants to do it? I’ll do it.

Micah: It’s Andrew. Andrew is doing it this month.

Eric: Andrew!

Andrew: It’s me! Send in your questions; nothing too personal. Peace and love, peace and love.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: And I think once a year we’re going to all hop on Zoom together and do an AMA together, and that’ll change the dynamic and the answers.

Eric: I have to say, I was thrilled by the AMA. I thought we got some really good questions; they ranged from book questions to, you know, non-book questions. [laughs] So I thought it was great.

Andrew: And last but not least, thank you for listening to today’s episode. Happy 500. Once again, here’s to 500 more. I’m Andrew.

Eric: I’m Eric.

Micah: I’m Micah.

Laura: And I’m Laura.

Andrew: Bye, everybody.

Laura and Micah: Bye.

Eric: Bye, and thank you.

Listener voicemails

“Hey, MuggleCast, this is Ally. I’m currently living in Florida, and I was just calling to say congrats on 500 episodes! That is such an amazing milestone, and you guys have just been putting in the most work. You guys have been doing an amazing job all these years. The first time I listened to you guys was Episode 50; you were actually the first podcast I ever listened to. I remember burning that episode on a CD because I just could not stop laughing at Andrew and Jamie singing ‘Your Song’ and all the hijinks you guys got up to, so I listened to that episode a lot. But you guys have always been there for me through my teenage years, through my adult puberty years where I have no idea what I’m doing. But no matter how confused I am at life, I always know that MuggleCast is there for me to not only analyze the books and get into these hard-hitting topics surrounding Harry Potter, but also digesting what’s happening in the real world and how it relates to the books, especially with all these political things going on. So thank you so much for always just being there for me, and for putting out such a wonderful podcast. You guys are the best, and here’s to 500 more. Thank you so much. Bye.”

“This is Drew from the Gamer News Radio podcast, and I just want to congratulate MuggleCast on making it to 500 episodes! That is absolutely amazing, and not many podcasts could actually say they have made it to 500 episodes. Here’s to 500 more episodes of MuggleCast. Keep up the good work, guys.”

“Yo, I’ve been listening to MuggleCast since I was 12. I’m 25 now. I think Micah is really fun… [laughs] I think Micah is a really funny guy. [laughs] I don’t know why that’s so funny. He just seems like a really chill dude, so he really calms me down. And yeah, I’ve listened to it when I’ve been on a bus, when I’ve been on a plane, in Japan, in America, flying from Vegas to New York. And that five-hour flight, when they used to say ‘Turn off electronic devices,’ I would keep listening to MuggleCast. So yeah, it’s been fun. Hopefully, things continue.”

“Hi, MuggleCast. Happy 500! I found the show shortly after moving from England to Canada, and as an awkward Harry Potter-loving 9-year-old, I didn’t have a lot of friends. Luckily for me, this coincided with the dawn of podcasting, and the first one I ever downloaded was MuggleCast. Hearing your voices really helped to get me through that time. I’ve followed you from MuggleCast to Imprint to Smart Mouths to Millennial, and recently I found myself back here again. We’re under a lockdown in Canada, so catching up on the episodes I’ve missed has been such an escape from the world in a time that I think we need it more than ever. It’s not only a nostalgia trip, but the content is just as fantastic as ever. I’m also a writer, and my goal one day is for Andrew to think that my novels are worth starting a podcast about. So thank you for always being in my pocket. Happy 500.”

“Hey, MuggleCast, this is Shalaria. Just wanted to say congratulations on your 500th episode. So I came to Harry Potter around 2000 as a young high school English teacher, and note, I originally pictured Harry Potter as animation. And I came to MuggleCast from Imprint around 2006, and am still a devoted Ravenclaw listening every week. You talked about early memories; I went to the 2007 midnight release with a bunch of friends, and I was in my 30s at the time and my kids were staying with Grandma. They are now teenage fans, another Ravenclaw and a Hufflepuff, both of whom started the series in middle school. We were firm believers in reading the books before watching the movies and still are. So I just wanted to say thank you for all the years of news, analysis, and geek chic discussions. Thank you and congrats.”

“Hey MuggleCast, Yasmina here. I’m more of a recent listener. I have been incorporating your podcast into my daily routine, so I truly hope you guys don’t run out of ideas. I just wanted to congratulate you guys on your 500th episode; what an amazing accomplishment. I have truly enjoyed every single episode, and I really appreciate the uniqueness and the different inputs that make your episodes much more interesting to listen to. Just wanted to thank you for paving the path for and inspiring many others to start their own Harry Potter podcasts. I can’t wait to see what you guys have in store for the upcoming episodes, and again, congratulations on this very important and huge milestone. Bye-bye.”

“Hi, MuggleCast. Tom from England here. Happy 500th episode. It’s crazy how long it’s been. I’ve been listening since 2008, so it’s been quite a journey, and excited to where you go in the future. Okay, thank you. Bye.”

“Hey, MuggleCast, it’s Lotty. I just wanted to hop on and say congratulations on 500 episodes. I remember 15 years ago doing MuggleCast sleepovers with my friends, and now I’m 28 and still listening to you guys, and I love it so much. You guys are wonderful. Congratulations.”

“Hey, MuggleCast, Emily from Germany here. Just wanted to drop in and say congratulations. I really, really, really enjoy your podcast; it’s the best podcast ever.”

“Hey, MuggleCast, it’s Becky from Sydney, Australia here. I just wanted to congratulate you all on reaching your 500th episode, and for getting this far without ever having the author on the show. I guess you guys were just really ahead of your time with that decision, just like you were ahead of your time entering the podcast scene. I’ve been listening since 2006, and it’s been awesome seeing how far you guys have come, and I look forward to hearing all your future episodes. Love the show.”

“Hey, MuggleCast, My name is Sarah Beth. I’m a relatively new Harry Potter fan as well as MuggleCast fan. I just want to congratulate you all on 500 episodes, and thank you all for providing a place for Harry Potter fans to deep-dive intellectually and completely goof off. I feel like y’all have become my friends over the past several months of listening, so congrats again and keep fighting the good fight.”

“Hey, MuggleCast, this is Audrey from Indianapolis. Congrats on 500 episodes. It’s absolutely crazy that you’ve recorded 500 and I’ve listened to 500 of your episodes. Thanks so much for being there every week, and here’s to another 500.”

“Hi guys, I just wanted to congratulate you on your 500th episode and let you know I’ve heard all of them many times, subliminally or consciously, because I have MuggleCast playing through my headphones every night. You are like my lullaby. I enjoy your episodes so much; I find you and your show so entertaining and your voices are very soothing, so if I do wake up in the middle of the night, it just brings me right back to that happy place, and I so appreciate it. I’m so grateful for your hard work all these years, and cheers to another 500. Take care.”