Transcript #508


MuggleCast 508 Transcript


Transcript for MuggleCast Episode #508, How to Tell Fred and George Weasley Apart, and More Twin Talk

Show Intro

[Show music plays]

Andrew Sims: Welcome to MuggleCast, your weekly ride into the wizarding world fandom. I’m Andrew.

Eric Scull: I’m Eric.

Micah Tannenbaum: I’m Micah.

Laura Tee: And I’m Laura.

Andrew: On today’s episode we’re going to be celebrating Fred and George Weasley by looking at their best moments in the series, and we’re going to ask ourselves, is it possible to tell the two characters apart? I would have said no. Eric is going to bring forth a compelling argument in which he says yes.

Eric: And it’s news to me! Not that we’re doing this discussion, but I’ve recently learned you can tell them apart.

Andrew: And we are hosting this discussion in honor of their birthday, which was April 1, so stay tuned for that in a moment. But first, I did want to mention – this doesn’t directly involve Harry Potter, but I thought it was worth mentioning to this audience – WB has struck a new deal with Regal Theaters, bringing the theatrical exclusivity window down to 45 days. So in other words, WB movies will run in theaters for 45 days before they can move to digital platforms. This is a big deal because that exclusivity window used to be 90 days. So we all remember this pre-pandemic, in that other world we used to live in, we would go see a movie. Let’s say it came out April 1. We wouldn’t see it at home, we wouldn’t be able to watch it at home for three months, and that was forever, so we had to go to the movie theater. Now the window has shrunk to 45 days starting in 2022, so this means… the Harry Potter angle here is that Fantastic Beasts 3 will probably hit HBO Max at the end of August 2022 because the movie is coming out July 15, 2022, so 45 days after that would be the very end of August. So I don’t think this is going to change when we see the movie; as people who podcast about the wizarding world it’s in our best interest to see it opening night. But it is good news if maybe you were considering… maybe you’re not high on the Fantastic Beasts film series or you are not eager to support J.K. Rowling’s endeavors at this stage, so instead of going to a movie theater, you can watch it on HBO Max.

Eric: Nice.

Andrew: Yeah, just thought I’d mentioned that.

Laura: That’s awesome.

Eric: Before we get into talking about Fred and George, did any of you guys get any good April Fool’s foolings? Were you fooled by anything?

Andrew: There’s no time for that this year. There’s a pandemic going on.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: I felt the same way. People still did it. News sites and everything, I think, still tried it.

Andrew: Yeah, some did. I think some, though, have recognized that this year and last year were not the right time to do April Fool’s jokes. Google just came out and made a statement; they were like, “We’re not doing anything this year.” They did this last year as well; they wanted to focus on the pandemic.

Eric: Their ones were good too. Didn’t they do the thing with Google Maps where they made it 8-bit or something?

Andrew: Yeah, they’ve done a lot of clever things. I mean, they launched Gmail on April 1, I don’t know, 2008 or something. That was their best prank ever.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: Oh, yeah.

Micah: When we were all at MuggleNet we used to have a lot of fun with April Fool’s Day.

Laura: Yep.

Micah: I recall coming up with fake titles of books and J.K. Rowling’s next endeavor and doing a lot of really clever things that actually did get picked up by media, so they thought it was full-on legit, especially the prank we pulled… I don’t remember what year it was, but I remember we came up with the title of… I don’t know if it was around the time of Deathly Hallows and we were just coming up with our own Book 7 titles, but we did something like “The Lairs of Lady Po.” Do you remember that, Eric?

Eric: “Lady Po,” yeah, it was an anagram for… oh, what was it an anagram for? April Fool’s. That’s what it was.

Micah: Oh yeah, there you go.

Eric: So the April… [laughs] Yeah, “The Lairs of Lady Po,” and I got my roommate’s typewriter for it and took a picture with blood spatter on the page.

[Andrew laughs]

Laura: Oh my gosh.

Andrew: That would convince fans.

Eric: It was like, “This will be her next…” Funnily enough, it was either before or after Casual Vacancy, when we knew that J.K. Rowling was getting into the mystery genre… or no, she wouldn’t have announced that. Nevertheless, I think we got it right that she was basically going to do a mystery after that, so good on us. But yeah, that was a good one. MuggleNet actually had a good one this year; they said that there were new HP Funkos being announced and it’s really obscure characters like Bem from Prisoner of Azkaban, I think.

Micah: Yusuf Kama.

Eric: Krum with the shark head and human body from the Goblet of Fire, so that was pretty fun. That made me laugh.

Andrew: Wow. There were a couple years – at least one year, maybe two years – where we pretended to shut down MuggleNet, and people were really upset.

Micah: Ooh, I remember that.

Andrew: [laughs] I think maybe one of the years we pretended that it was WB’s fault, like they forced us to shut down.

Eric: The other year we said we were rebranding as LeakyMug, that it was being permanent or something.

Andrew: Oh, yeah.

Laura: Yeah, we were merging the sites.

Eric: Yeah, people still bring that one up. I heard that one just the other day. I was like, “Oh, yeah.”

Laura: Y’all remind me, was “The Pillar of StorgĂ©” an April Fool’s thing?

[Micah laughs]

Andrew: From Jo? I don’t think so.

Eric: I don’t think she pulled a prank if it was. I think maybe it was one of those ones where they registered the patent or the copyright, and because people can look into that, you can figure it out.

Andrew: Yeah, it was one of the fake titles they registered, right?

Eric: I think so.

Laura: Okay, that makes sense. I feel like I remember us spending a lot of time on that. [laughs]

Andrew: Yeah, that rumor came from somewhere… now my memory is being jogged. Maybe she posted in her FAQ being like, “No, you guys. That’s not real. Come on.”

Eric: I think it was just a rumor on the Internet, and then she made fun of “The Pillar of StorgĂ©” and then was like, “And it’s also not ‘The Mystic Kettle of Knackledork.'”

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: Right, yeah, she made up some others or something. Back in those days I think it was harder to tell what was real news and what was fake news; it seems to be much easier these days. Maybe people have just gotten worse at creating fake news. But also, we’ve gotten older.

Laura: I was going to say, as a culture, we’ve had to become more aware of what fake news looks like, right?

Andrew: Yes.

Laura: So I feel like a lot of us have become very eagle-eyed when it comes to that topic.

Andrew: Yep, media literacy. Very important.

Main Discussion: Fred and George

Andrew: All right, so let’s move into our character discussion. Today we’re going to talk about Fred and George Weasley.

Eric: Yes, these are the beloved characters, brothers to Ron Weasley and all the other Weasleys. They appear in all seven Harry Potter books. They’re the resident jokers, pranksters, funny guys in general, but you don’t need to look too hard to find that they share a lot of heart and positive traits that make up all of the Weasley family. So we’re all familiar with Fred and George Weasley, and that said, here is just a quick bio rundown. We do not actually have middle names for them, unlike other Weasleys we do have their middle names. Their birthday is April 1, 1978, if you subscribe to that whole year thing. Their House is Gryffindor. We do not know their wands or their boggarts either.

Laura: Ohh.

Eric: So there are still some things that I’d like to get answers for, but their Patronuses are both the same Patronus: It’s a magpie, which, according to the author, “We have a saying about them in the UK, ‘One for sorrow, two for joy,’ as you might know. Plus, they’re talkative thieves,” meaning the magpie, so a talkative bird. Sounds like a good Patronus for these guys who crack jokes all the time.

Andrew: Checks out.

Eric: Now as far as spouse goes, we know from Book 4 that Fred Weasley took Angelina Johnson to the Yule Ball. There’s that quite comical scene where he asks her out to the Yule Ball in front of Harry to show how easy it is to get a girl. But it turns out that Fred died in year seven, and actually, George Weasley marries Angelina, and they name their first child Fred in his memory.

Andrew: So how do we feel about this? Were Fred and Angelina dating outside of the Yule Ball?

Eric: I think maybe afterward. I think that it was clear that they have an attraction to one another. I think when Fred asks her out, the book says that she looks at him appraisingly, or approvingly; they have different meanings, but it’s one of those things. So I think that she’s interested. And as far as George marrying her, I think they probably shared a lot of grief after Fred’s passing, and they were perhaps one of the only two people who can understand what the other was going through, maybe.

Laura: Yeah. I think, too, we have to remember the context of them effectively being high school-aged when Fred and Angelina were dating, if they were even doing that. I’m sure we all have somebody that we dated in high school, and do you really care about what that person is doing now?

Andrew: No, I don’t.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: Then again, I don’t even think I dated in high school, so I don’t have a real answer to this question. [fake cries] I just think it’s a little weird. I mean, does Angelina feel like she leveled up when she got with George after all instead of Fred?

Micah: Wow.

Eric: Yeah, she likes Weasley twins who don’t die.

[Andrew laughs]

Micah: Well, one of the things that could be a little bit awkward about this is that when Angelina looks at George, does she see Fred? That aspect of it might be a little weird at times.

Eric: I don’t disagree, except… that’s why I love that we are going to be talking about how you can tell them apart later.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: Because they may look alike. In fact, somewhere in the books it’s said they’re identical down to “the last freckle.” Usually even identical twins aren’t that identical…

Andrew: Right.

Eric: … because things like freckles, that’s sun damage, or can be. Blemishes. So that’s really interesting. But I actually looked at the term for this, and it’s called “levirate marriage.” Storied history, mostly with religions where the women are not permitted to marry anyone after their husband dies, except for a brother of the husband. Very restrictive and weird. We know that Fred and Angelina weren’t married, but anyway, the whole term encompasses all sorts of marriages that are very similar. Marrying your brother’s widow, something like that.

Andrew: Little odd to me that this happened, but okay.

Laura: And I don’t really think this is that. I mean, these people grew up together. Angelina played Quidditch with Fred and George the entire time she was at Hogwarts. I could see maybe in the beginning stages it being a little awkward, but I don’t see that being a long term theme in their relationship.

Andrew: Right, right.

Eric: So George and Angelina have their child, Fred, and their daughter, Roxanne, as well. As far as job title… Fred and George, as we know, are really successful inventors. Now, after Fred’s death, Ron actually quits being an Auror and joins George in the running of the joke shop. And since we did this for Ron, I thought we’d read the star sign for Fred and George, being born on April 1.

Laura: Yes. “Being an Aries, born on April 1, your ambition and vigor are amongst your most defining qualities. In all matters of life, you are ambitious and hardworking. This quality is reflected in your current success, but more so is a testament to the levels of success that you wish to reach in the future. Those closest to you have witnessed your ability to motivate yourself and put in an endless amount of energy to reach your goals. You would be surprised as to how many admirers your hard work has earned you.”

Andrew: Wow. I mean, that’s accurate.

Laura: Yeah, to a T.

Andrew: But like I said last time, I think all horoscopes are designed to match exactly anybody who reads them, so… [laughs]

Laura: Yes, they’re intentionally vague and broad, right? But we can still have fun with them for the purpose of the discussion. [laughs]

Andrew: Yeah. I mean, clearly, the Weasley twins do fit well here.

Eric: I mean, ambitious and hardworking. Can you name anybody that’s more hardworking than the Weasley twins? They work on perfecting their joke shop for three or four years before we even go there.

Micah: Yeah, what really caught my attention was “how many admirers your hard work has earned you.” They have a lot of people who really look up to them. And we see it throughout the books, but none more so, I think, than at times when Ron talks about just how well-accomplished they are in opening up the joke shop, so… and just the various Hogwarts students. I think a lot of people look at them, especially in Order of the Phoenix, in terms of what they’re able to do, so they have a lot of admirers even if they don’t realize it.

Eric and Laura: Yeah.

Laura: And we really have to highlight, too, that they were working on launching their joke shop while they were full-time students, so they were busy boys for a few years there. And there was also the fact that even their mayhem was impressive to their teachers sometimes; I think it was Professor Flitwick who left part of their swamp in Order of the Phoenix because he thought it was a good bit of magic.

Eric: We did this for Ron, where we mentioned his introduction scene, and yet again, I think that the Fred and George intro is a really good showcase of their character. And it is, of course, also in Book 1, when Harry is looking for the platform. He spots the Weasley children, starting with Percy going through the barrier. And here’s the excerpt:

“‘Fred, you next,’ the plump woman said.

‘I’m not Fred, I’m George,’ said the boy. ‘Honestly, woman, you call yourself our mother? Can’t you tell I’m George?’

‘Sorry, George, dear.’

‘Only joking, I am Fred,’ said the boy, and off he went. His twin called after him to hurry up, and he must have done so, because a second later, he had gone – but how had he done it?”

So I think this just perfectly showcases their joking nature, as well as their ability to have fun with the rest of their family and the ability to really embrace their identical nature to fool people.

Andrew: Right. Yeah, you immediately get a sense of their personalities here, and adapted very well in the movie too.

Eric: So I know the Weasleys aren’t very well loved by some of the panel. I wanted to ask, Andrew, where do the twins rank in terms of the Weasleys?

Andrew: [laughs] Yeah, I’ve always appreciated the comic humor that they add to the books. They’re not my favorite characters. I would probably put Bill or Arthur towards the top – or sorry, Arthur and Charlie towards the top of that. That could be a discussion for another day, though. But yeah, I put them somewhere in the middle of the list.

Laura: They’re definitely towards the top of my list in terms of Weasley preferences. I will say and confess – I feel bad about this – but when I think about Fred and George, I really do think about them as a package deal, and less as individuals. So I’m looking forward to this discussion, because I would like to be able to think of them as two separate people.

Andrew: Yeah, I agree with that.

Laura: But yeah, they’re definitely… I would put them in my top three for Weasleys.

Eric: Yeah, I think that’s fair. Again, just like Laura said, before today, I thought that it was pretty hard to tell them apart. And now that I can tell them apart, I still kind of prefer to think them as a package. And if that is the case, I would say they’re my favorite Weasleys.

Micah: Given the fact that we don’t get a whole lot of information on Bill and Charlie, couldn’t you put them together as a package deal, too, in terms of, hey, we just don’t know a whole lot about you?

Eric: Oh yeah.

Andrew: The unknowns. Distant characters.

Micah: Molly and Arthur, husband and wife, let’s pair them together. So Fred and George are not all by themselves. But I agree, at least the way that they were written, when I was first reading the series, I’ve always considered them to be a package deal because they always seem to be with each other. And I think that’s… it’s almost like we should have had somebody on the show who is a twin, or is a mother or father to twins, to talk about what this dynamic is like.

[Eric laughs]

Micah: But I just think that the comedic nature that they bring to the series is much needed at times, and so I would, just for that reason alone, rank them towards the top.

Eric: The reason I said they’re my top as a group is because I think together, they showcase some of the best traits of all the Weasleys. And I was thinking about this idea, and then I was like, “I should write this out.” So I did, and here it is. They’re like Arthur in that they like to invent things, and they tinker with things. They’re also very adventurous, like Bill, who studies in Egypt and does curse-breaking for Gringotts. They also carve out their own niche; they don’t necessarily march to an existing beat, and that’s like Charlie because he’s studying dragons. Nobody knows where he is, just vaguely in Romania. They also have Percy’s ambition, though it’s in slightly a different manner. They’re loyal to each other, the way that Ron is loyal to Harry, and they’ve got gumption, like Ginny. And I struggled with Molly because they’re afraid of her.

[Andrew and Micah laugh]

Eric: But I would say that they’re also fierce in their approach at times when they need to be, so I think they get a lot of strength from Molly. So really, I think when we like the Weasleys, or we talk about qualities they like altogether, they’re not traits that aren’t shared by other Weasleys or that other Weasleys don’t have. But the twins seem to embody, I think, the full spectrum.

Andrew: That is really interesting and something I’ve never thought of before, and I’m wondering if this was Rowling’s intention? And I’m also wondering, are there any other characters? Are there any other Weasley members that do check all the boxes like Fred and George do? I don’t think so.

Laura: Yeah, I don’t think so either.

Micah: Certainly no middle child syndrome for them.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Andrew and Laura: No.

Eric: I wonder if that’s because they split it in half.

Micah: Like a Horcrux?

Eric: Yeah, or to share the weight of being the middle children.

Micah: One characteristic that came to mind when you were talking about Molly… I would say Fred and George, for the most part, are protective of the family. We see it with Ron; it’s not as often. We definitely see it with Ginny. Maybe that’s one attribute that they have that is similar to Molly, but…

Eric: Yeah, that’s a really good point.

Laura: Something that I really appreciate about the twins is… everybody knows that I have reservations about Ginny’s character development in the books, but I feel like when we get to see those moments for Ginny, they’re usually through the lens of her interacting with Fred and George, or her referencing Fred and George in some way.

Eric: Ooh.

Laura: Like that whole… I think there was a chapter that ended on her saying, “Growing up with Fred and George, I know that if you’ve got enough nerve, you can accomplish just about anything.” And so it makes me wonder if in terms of temperament, if Ginny is most like the twins rather than her other siblings?

Eric: Yes, the twins definitely have a special relationship with Ginny. Even as far back as Chamber of Secrets, she’s going through some dark stuff, they don’t know it, but they try and comfort her. They’ll crack jokes. So they’ll do things just for Ginny to get her to smile and stuff. And I think there’s definitely… she clearly looks up to them, and they have a really interesting connection, I think.

Andrew: I’m wondering, are the twins the most entrepreneurial characters in the Harry Potter series? And maybe we can do this with these character discussions going forward. If we were to award them a title in a class yearbook… I don’t want to call them class clowns; that’s too easy.

Eric: Ahh.

Andrew: Are they the most entrepreneurial characters in the Harry Potter series? And keep in mind, if you say this once for these characters, you can never say it again for another character we talk about.

Eric: Okay, then I’m going class clown because…

Andrew: No, that’s too easy!

Eric: Yeah! No!

Andrew: Fine.

Eric: Most entrepreneurial… well, okay. Are they, though, to answer your question?

Andrew: I think so. I mean, they launched a joke shop while they were kids. I’m extremely impressed by that.

Eric: I don’t necessarily disagree.

Laura: I think that they are some of the most entrepreneurial characters, but you have to remember, Draco mended the Vanishing Cabinet and got a bunch of Death Eaters into Hogwarts. He could…

Andrew: I’m just thinking business-wise, though.

Laura: I mean, I don’t know. I feel like Draco shows a lot of smarts throughout the series that could put him in this category as well, so I don’t know if I want to call him that. I think if I was going to give them a school award, I would say most likely to be a standup comedian for each of them.

Andrew: Okay.

Eric: I figured it out. Laura, would you say – because entrepreneurial is something different than this other word I was thinking about – enterprising? Enterprising is being resourceful.

Laura: Yeah, that’s true. That could be more Draco.

Eric: Yeah, so I’m thinking definitely, as far as business-minded, that’s the twins. They start their own… we don’t know anybody else that starts… Hermione starts SPEW, which is interesting, but that’s more of social justice and sort of nonprofit, whereas the twins market their own line of products and have that going the last couple of books.

Andrew: What would you title them, Micah?

Micah: Most Likely to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: There you go.

Micah: It’s effortless.

Andrew: Most twinny too.

Eric: What?

Andrew: Most twinny.

Eric: Oh, yeah. Well, Parvati and Padma Patil.

Andrew: Well, they’re twinny, but are they the most twinny?

Eric: [laughs] You’re right. They’re in different Houses; that must mean that they have different personalities.

Micah: What I find hard about calling them class clowns is they’re not really in class with Harry. I don’t know, can you give them that designation without actually getting to see what they do in their own year?

Eric: Well, that’s…

Micah: Is anybody else funny in Harry’s year and we just don’t know about it? I don’t know. Maybe that’s getting a little bit too into the weeds.

Eric: No, I think that’s right. There’s those couple instances where the whole school witnesses it; they’ll act out in the Great Hall. Two instances come to mind: One is the school song that Dumbledore conducts like a funeral march because they’re really dragging it out, and then the other one is when Dumbledore introduces the concept of the age line for the Goblet, Fred just shouts, “You’re JOKING!” in front of everybody.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Just being disruptive, not really bowing to authority. And Dumbledore is always making eye contact with the Weasleys during his speeches. I think it fits. Class clown for me.

Andrew: All right.

Eric: But anyway, I’m glad we had that little preamble because here’s the answer. Here’s how to tell Fred and George Weasley apart. And this was mind-blowing to me, because just like you guys, I would always package them together. It doesn’t help that 95% of the time, they’re seen together, and they’re shown to do things like finish each other’s sentences and stuff like that. But I actually came across a couple years ago… I don’t know who it was. Somebody said to me, they singled out a twin and they were like, “Oh, I loved when Fred does this.” I’m like, “What are you talking about? How do you know which one it is?” And they said, “Well, you can absolutely tell if you look closely.” And it’s taken me several years, but I finally looked closely. So for the record, could you guys tell them apart? Do you guys have any sort of indicator before going in that there is a difference between Fred and George?

Andrew and Laura: No.

Eric: No?

Andrew: No. I, too, have seen them as a package, so I’ve never bothered to even think about it. I just assumed that they were actually the same and you can’t tell them apart. [laughs]

Eric: Right, right. I mean, the books don’t help with that.

Andrew: Very ignorant.

Micah: I would say maybe in Deathly Hallows, I could tell them apart.

Andrew: Wow.

Laura: Oh my God.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Micah: I mean, after George loses his ear. Come on.

Eric: Now, is that because…? Let’s be clear, Micah, is that because one of them dies and the other one lives? Or the other one has one ear?

Micah: No. One ear. It’s just very helpful.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: Still dark, but I like dark humor.

Laura: Oh, Micah. You’re such a troll. [laughs]

Eric: Okay. Well, at least in the books, it turns out Harry can tell them apart by voice when they’re stuck in the fireplace.

Micah: Oh, like puberty? Like one hit puberty before the other?

Eric: Ahh, that shouldn’t be a thing. But no, they’re stuck in the fireplace at the Dursleys’, and there’s a point where it’s mentioned that Fred’s voice said something. And Harry is just noting that it was Fred’s voice, and I’m like, “Wow, they even sound… people who know them can more or less tell them apart.” And even though we read that quote from Molly on the platform where she was struggling, they all pretty much address the twins correctly. And Ron says things… in fact, a lot of the stuff we have from Ron’s early childhood, he’ll distinguish which twin turned his teddy bear into a spider and all that. The characters can tell. But here it is, here is the answer we’ve all been waiting for. Between Fred and George, Fred is the most likely person to take initiative, even if it’s in a joke. So for instance, here’s a main quote from [Fred]. “‘Hi,’ said Fred, reaching the bar first and counting his companions quickly. ‘Could we have… 25 butterbeers, please?'” This is when they go into the Hog’s Head. He reached the bar first; it wasn’t anyone else. So that’s…

Andrew: Right. Just like I’m considered the leader here on the show because I host it, and just like Fred, I always order all the drinks at the bar with all y’all’s credit cards, because I’m not paying for all those.

Laura: When you started that sentence, I was like, “Uhh,” and then you were like, “all y’all’s credit cards,” and I was like, “Yeah, there we go.”

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: I’ll go get the drinks. I just won’t pay for them all.

Laura: Interesting observation here, though. You mentioned earlier, Eric, that Fred was born first.

Andrew: Yeah. Where are you going?

Laura: Well, he’s always been the leader. He’s always been first.

Andrew: Oh. [laughs] Does that mean they’re a leader if they were born first? Like, “I’ll exit the womb first”?

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: No, of course not. But we know that these books are littered with symbolism, and I just don’t see this being a coincidence.

Andrew: Okay, that’s fair. Yeah.

Eric: I like that. I also like that it’s alphabetical. That’s how I can tell who’s older, it’s Fred then George, some of the times. But the other thing I’m thinking… I mean, even if you look at how many times they were mentioned, maybe due to being more active, but Fred actually is mentioned over 900 times in the whole series, and George is mentioned 731. So there’s just more going on with Fred.

Micah: Well, you’ve got to pay tribute. You have to pay tribute to Fred.

Eric: Yeah. Well, actually, that’s true. It’s a bit grueling, and I won’t get into this too deeply, but there’s a bunch of mentions for Fred that are “Fred’s body,” [laughs] talking about what happens to him after he dies and how the family is crowded around it, and it’s not great. So that accounts for at least 30 of these mentions. But anyway, so he is more of the leader; we’ll get into specific examples of that. But as a secondary personality trait, and the one that is most easy to distinguish Fred with, is that Fred takes things too far. He sometimes goes too far. He is more cruel, more often, to everyone, including his own family members. If anybody’s talking down on the Weasleys, and it’s one of the Weasleys, it’s going to be Fred. And he even picks on them. And there’s just so many examples in the books. I found almost too many examples of him just taking it a little too far, and we’re going to read some of these excerpts.

Andrew: So while the twins needed living beings to test their sweets on, Fred dropped the Ton-Tongue Toffee for Dudley, and the excerpt goes:

“‘Did he eat it?’ said Fred excitedly, holding out a hand to pull Harry to his feet.

‘Yeah,’ said Harry, straightening up. ‘What was it?’

‘Ton-Tongue Toffee,’ said Fred brightly. ‘George and I invented them, and we’ve been looking for someone to test them on all summer.'”

[laughs] So the key word there, like I emphasized, was “excitedly,” to Eric’s point about cruelty.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: And then this other excerpt:

“‘I didn’t give him anything,’ said Fred, with another evil grin. ‘I just dropped it… It was his fault he went and ate it, I never told him to.’

‘You dropped it on purpose!’ roared Mr. Weasley. ‘You knew he’d eat it, you knew he was on a diet -‘”

Yeah. So yeah, Fred does get off on testing this…

Micah: Wait, Dudley was on a diet? Wow, the things I forget from Harry Potter.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: I do vaguely remember that.

Eric: Yeah. I think Harry wrote it in a letter to them before they came, and then Fred sees this opportunity. Look, I mean, he says, “George and I invented them,” right? He gives his twin credit. But it was Fred who ultimately was like, “This is a good idea. I’m going to drop this, pretend it was a mistake, and we’re going to get our test results back.” There are so many examples of this. Fred actually “rescues” a salamander from Care of Magical Creatures class and the salamander eats a firework, just to see what would happen. Pretty sure the salamander is okay, but it’s stuff like that. Fred takes the lead on these things.

Laura: And I feel like we’re conditioned to hope and believe that the twins know where the line is, right? They have that whole bit where they talk about “We know where the line is. We might put a toe over it every now and then, but we would never actually do anything that caused any real damage,” which is possibly the optimistic way to look at it. But when you’re talking about these sweets and the chemical reactions they’re causing people, how can they know for sure that they’re not going to hurt people?

Andrew: No, they can’t.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Eric: I mean, yeah, they try some of them on themselves. Obviously they’re not above that or are afraid of that. But there’s no way they should have done it to Dudley, who is also a Muggle, and therefore has different blood chemistry, blood work.

Micah: Well, also, doesn’t Hermione start to get pretty furious with them at one point for testing it out on younger students?

Laura: Yeah, they were testing the… what were they, the Fainting Fancies? On first years? [laughs]

Eric: Yeah, and they have… isn’t it Nosebleed Nougat? And there’s no immediate cure, so a bunch of kids are just… or maybe that happens once by accident. But yeah, I mean, George willingly goes along with the human testing element, and so there is blame to go around, but my point is it is Fred that led the charge there. And that’s just a theme that consistently shows up in the books.

Laura: Yeah, and I think it’s also indicative of the culture they grew up in. I mean, we’ve talked so many times before about how Hogwarts is a security nightmare, and there are lots of things about the wizarding world that are inherently quirky, if you want to be positive about it.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: So I don’t think that relative to the entire context in which Fred and George exist, I don’t think that they’re cruel, horrible people. I just think that they’re very much reflective of the norms of the society that they exist in.

Micah: It’s interesting you say that because as we start to go through these examples, I’m almost starting to think, is there a good twin and a bad twin? A left hand and a right hand?

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Micah: Because that’s normally the case when you are dealing with twins in literature, right? There’s a little bit more of a dark side to one, a little bit more of a lighter side to the other. And I don’t think we spend enough time with Fred and George to really see that, but these examples are definitely starting to show some of that.

Eric: They do get more damning, that’s for sure. Here’s one. Laura, will you take this?

Laura: Sure. So this is an excerpt where they’re making fun of Percy. And it goes,

“‘Harry!’ said Fred, elbowing Percy out of the way and bowing deeply. ‘Simply splendid to see you, old boy -‘

‘Marvelous,’ said George, pushing Fred aside and seizing Harry’s hand in turn. ‘Absolutely spiffing.’

Percy scowled.

‘That’s enough, now,’ said Mrs. Weasley.

‘Mum!’ said Fred, as though he’d only just spotted her and seizing her hand too. ‘How really corking to see you -‘

‘I said, that’s enough,’ said Mrs. Weasley, depositing her shopping in an empty chair.”

Eric: That’s in Prisoner of Azkaban, when Percy is like, “Oh, Harry, sir,” all formal and full of himself. Sure, Percy can be taken down several levels, and it’s probably good for him. But after Molly has told the twins that that was enough, for Fred to then continue the joke, is my only point there.

Micah: Right.

Eric: That he goes too far. [laughs]

Micah: Well, and it also says that Fred elbows Percy. George just pushes him. We also have another example here, where Fred assaults Flint after attacking Alicia Spinnet, than speaks out when Madam Hooch penalizes both of the teams during Quidditch.

“Angelina was nearly thrown from her broom as Marcus Flint went smashing into her.

‘Sorry!’ said Flint as the crowd below booed. ‘Sorry, didn’t see her!’

A moment later, Fred Weasley chucked his Beater’s club at the back of Flint’s head. Flint’s nose smashed into the handle of his broom and began to bleed.

‘That will do!’ shrieked Madam Hooch, zooming between them. ‘Penalty shot to Gryffindor for an unprovoked attack on the Chaser! Penalty shot to Slytherin for deliberate damage to their Chaser!’

‘Come off it, Miss!’ howled Fred, but Madam Hooch blew her whistle and Alicia flew forward to take the penalty.”

Eric: So here’s an example. Fred threw his bat at the guy, and then complained that he got penalized for throwing his bat.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: And he was looking out for Alicia, so we can’t really fault him for this, but I think it does add to your point here that he will go there if he needs to.

Eric: Yeah, I mean, we understand even broken bones in the wizarding world are really not big deals, and in Quidditch in particular, everything goes. There are moments of George fist-fighting and things like that, too, but this was a particularly egregious one where I’m like, “Man, mostly his complaining about it was the problem.”

Micah: But I love how the focus is on the front of his face where he broke his nose, or damaged his nose, but what about the back of his head? He just got a club chucked in the back of his head. His head is fine?

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: I guess the back of his head is fine. He’s got a strong noggin.

Micah: Thick-headed Slytherins.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: So here’s a summary of just some other little things. Again, trying to drive the point home about Fred going too far or being the leader. This is when they’re talking about OWLs for the first time in Book 5.

“‘Kenneth Towler came out in boils, d’you remember?’ said Fred reminiscently.

‘That’s ’cause you put Bulbadox Powder in his pajamas,’ said George.

‘Oh yeah,’ said Fred, grinning. ‘I’d forgotten… hard to keep track sometimes, isn’t it?'”

So they were trying to talk about how the stress of exams was what did it, but nope, it was Fred doing an unprovoked attack on somebody’s pajamas? [laughs] Come on.

Laura: Yeah. I wonder… this kind of thing really strikes me as adolescent ribbing. I just feel like this is something that most people grow out of, and Fred just didn’t get the opportunity to grow out of it, to his credit, so…

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Yeah, that’s possible. I mean, when you listen to all the stories of Ron being a kid… Ron says Fred once gave him an Acid Pop that burned a hole through his tongue. Can you say too far? [laughs] It’s an Acid Pop. You think there’s a little discomfort? That could have scarred Ron. And in fact, Ron’s whole fear of spiders – we mentioned this – is because he also turned his teddy bear into a spider. And it was also Fred who tricked Ron into nearly making an Unbreakable Vow as a kid, which may have killed them. And there’s even an excerpt – although I didn’t read all of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, there’s an excerpt in the margins, because remember, the original copies had all their school notes. And according to what Ron writes in those margins, Fred killed Ron’s pet Puffskein by using it for Bludger practice.

Micah: He was just getting ready for Marcus Flint.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: Well, I believe everyone on this panel has a younger sibling. That’s correct, right? Didn’t you ever pick on your younger siblings?

Andrew: All. The. Time.

Eric: My younger sibling picked on me.

Laura: Aww.

Andrew: Oh, wow. Eric.

Eric: It went the other direction.

Andrew: Yeah, what happened there? Come on.

Eric: So two more here. It’s Fred who bewitches Percy’s prefect and later Head Boy badge. Fred also tells Harry that Ginny is into him, and keeps going on about Molly being attracted to Lockhart in Book 2. He mentions it a bunch of times. And later in Book 5 when Ron becomes a prefect, here’s how the two twins – to illustrate their differences – here’s how they take it.

“‘No way,’ said George in a hushed voice.

‘There’s been a mistake,’ said Fred, snatching the letter out of Ron’s grasp and holding it up to the light as though checking for a watermark. ‘No one in their right mind would make Ron a prefect…'”

Andrew: Oh God. [laughs]

Eric: So yeah, that’s a little harsh, right? Somebody goes from “No way” to “Nah, this person is off their rocker.” I think it’s the same when Lavender starts dating Ron; they’re like, “Does she have a mental illness or something?” It’s just like, what?

Andrew: Yeah, yeah.

Eric: So that was our look at Fred Weasley. Now, George, I struggled to not define him as the opposite, right? So if Fred goes too far, George knows not to go too far. But that’s essentially what happens. George Weasley is kinder. He’s softer around the edges. He’s also a little bit more of a planner, more of a strategist. He’s more careful. And some of that does come from his very headstrong twin, but I feel like we have some examples of when he was nicer just for the fun of it. For instance, we meet George Weasley first. He’s the first twin we really properly meet. And he walks up to Harry, who he does not know, and asks to help him with his trunk. He says,

“‘Want a hand?’ […]

‘Yes, please,’ Harry panted.

‘Oy, Fred! C’mere and help!’

With the twins’ help, Harry’s trunk was at last tucked away in a corner of the compartment.”


“‘What’s that?’ said one of the twins suddenly, pointing at Harry’s lightning scar.”

So George is just randomly going around asking people if they want hands getting their trunk on the train. I don’t think that that is something that Fred would do.

Andrew and Laura: Yeah.

Laura: It makes me wonder if George is maybe more like Molly than Fred.

Eric: Okay.

Laura: If we think about them in comparison to the adult figures in their lives, if you were to say of Arthur and Molly, which one do you think each twin is more like? From this conversation so far, I’m feeling like George is temperamentally more like Molly.

Andrew: Yeah, that’s interesting.

Eric: I like that a lot. And then Arthur, do we see Arthur lose his temper? I guess a couple times, right?

Andrew: Yeah, there’s probably a couple situations. I like this other example you have, actually, and it seems like you were more unsure about it. But when they are consoling Ron about Scabbers, it’s actually George who does more of the consoling. So the passage goes… it starts with Fred.

“‘Come on, Ron, you are always saying how boring Scabbers was,’ said Fred bracingly. ‘And he’s been off-color for ages, he was wasting away. It was probably better for him to snuff it quickly – one swallow – he probably didn’t feel a thing.'”

And then Ginny says, “Fred!” and then George says,

“All he did was eat and sleep, Ron, you said it yourself.”

So there’s not a super clear-cut difference here, but it does seem like George is the one who’s actually trying to be like, “Hey, look, he didn’t add much to your life anyway; he was just eating and sleeping,” whereas Fred was a little more brutal. [laughs]

Laura: Yeah, Fred is evoking imagery of Scabbers being swallowed alive. [laughs]

Andrew: “A single swallow!”

Eric: [laughs] Which, I mean, he’s not wrong.

Andrew: No, he’s not wrong. But it’s probably not the best thing to say.

Eric: Yeah, well, no, and it re-traumatizes Ron because he’s just thought that… he’s now mentally picturing his pet rat that he’s had for years being devoured by the cat, which is exactly the thing that he wishes he didn’t picture.

Micah: You could also, though, look at George reacting to Ginny in this moment, too, and taking a step back after she calls out Fred, so I wonder if that has anything to do with it.

Laura: Yeah, that’s a really good point. I was thinking here, to George being more of the practical planner of the two of them, he’s still reminding Ron, “You didn’t like Scabbers, you’ve never liked him, but let me be a little softer about giving you that reminder than my twin was.”

Eric: Yeah, it perfectly illustrates how softer George is in these next two quotes from Book 4. Micah, you want to take these?

Micah: So the first example comes from when they’re writing to Ludo Bagman about him stealing their money in Goblet of Fire.

“As Harry watched, George shook his head at Fred, scratched out something with his quill, and said in a very quiet voice that nevertheless carried across the almost deserted room, ‘No – that sounds like we’re accusing him. Got to be careful…'”

Eric: So there’s George… this is evidence of I would say stratagem. George is like, “You can’t just come out and say, ‘You gave us leprechaun gold and stole our bet money,'” which he absolutely did. He’s going for a more measured approach as opposed to what Fred is doing because they are ultimately trying to get their money back.

Micah: Well, it’d almost be like if they were in person with Ludo, you would think George would be the one sitting down and having the conversation, with Fred pacing in the background ready to hit him over the head with his Beater’s club.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: Well, actually, they do interact at the Yule Ball. Fred comes right up to Ludo and says, “Hi, Mr. Bagman, can we buy you drinks?” and Bagman is like, “Uh, no,” and leaves. So there’s Fred’s direct approach, versus George, “Let’s write him a letter” kind of a thing.

Laura: Yeah, and this is also George being smart and realizing that when you put something in writing, that’s forever, right? But if you have a heated conversation with someone one on one, all it is is their word saying “They accused me of stealing their gold,” but when you’re putting it in writing and making an official declaration, you don’t want to be quite that direct, because if things were to escalate in any way, you don’t want written evidence of your accusation floating around out there, so it’s very smart.

Micah: And then you also have, following the Triwizard Tournament, Harry giving his winnings to Fred and George. George says, very softly, “Harry, thanks,” while Fred just nods fervently at his side.

Eric: Yeah, that’s an extra “Thank you” after the original whole scene where he’s like, “Seriously, I’m going to flush this down the drain if you don’t take these Galleons.” George circles back and – this is on the last page of the book in Goblet of Fire – just circles back and gives an additional “Thank you.” And we know by that point that they’re not getting their money back from Ludo because he’s on the run and owes a lot of money to a lot of people, and it really means a lot to them. And so George, again, just takes the time to make sure that it is known, so definitely softer.

Micah: I just wanted to take a second here, though, to also acknowledge the relationship that Harry forms with Fred and George. He really does become a brother to them, and I think a brother more so at times than even Ron, and that’s kind of crappy to say, but it’s true. And I think this moment in particular… I know it’s a financial transaction, but I think it’s the meaning and the thought behind what Harry is doing because he’s laying the foundation for Fred and George to move forward and do what they want to do with their lives. And I think this moment in particular really just solidifies the bond between them.

Eric: That’s a great point.

Andrew: Yeah. I don’t think it’s cruel to say that Harry had a more brotherly relationship with Fred and George than Ron did, because when you’re growing up, like we mentioned a few minutes ago, you have these testy relationships with your brothers or sisters. You’re taunting them, you’re teasing them, it’s just what you do as kids. God, I used to do it all the time with my brother and sister. So I think it was completely natural for Harry to build this relationship with Fred and George, and like you, I loved this relationship between them. I love that Harry helped them set up their business. I’ve joked on the show a couple of times that this reminds me of Shark Tank, the show on ABC…

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: … where these investors invest in entrepreneurs. That’s what I see here with Harry. I just think it’s awesome.

Eric: Well, and not unlike those investors, Harry is impressed by Fred and George. He always has been. Here’s a real opportunity to bankroll them, but he just likes… I think it’s because they have the distance that he doesn’t have with Ron, because he’s so, so, so close to Ron all the time. Fred and George are just out there making changes in the world and doing great things, and Harry can just… he’s in a position to appreciate that. And then when it comes time and he’s got these Triwizard winnings, more money he doesn’t need – not to mention he probably sees it as blood money because Cedric just died – he sees an opportunity. And actually, he does tell them to get Ron better dress robes with it. I mean, that won’t cost all 1,000 Galleons, but he does spare a thought for Ron in that sentence as well.

Andrew: Well, at the Wizarding World theme parks, it’ll cost 1,000 Galleons.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: But in the wizarding world, like the fictional one? Yeah, probably not as much.

Eric: At the Wizarding World theme park and superspreader event, you mean?

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Let’s start the rumor.

Andrew: Wow, so Eric Scull is here to say don’t visit the theme parks until COVID is over.

Eric: Maybe give it some more time, guys. Two different examples of possibly being more strategic for George, just wrapping up George here. So Fred is driving the flying car – ha ha, proves Fred is a leader – but it’s actually George who… you do what everybody does in the passenger seat, you’re the navigator, right? And it’s actually… this is before GPS; of course, it wouldn’t work even if they had it. But George is the one who’s telling Fred, “You’re going too far west” and “We’ll be there in 10 minutes; circle back around,” so he’s navigating. And this really speaks to George’s, again, just more planning nature. There’s something to it. I actually think he is almost like what Ron should have been as far as strategy. He’s got the smarts for the business. You know, the whole Ron thing with the chess set in Book 1 didn’t really pay off. But I think Ron and George are very alike in that way. Actually, another thing: Fred is sort of checked out in Book 5 when the Order is discussing the weapon and what it might be, and it’s just weird because George has this line where he says, “Maybe it’s something that can kill loads of people at once.” And like, fine, they’re all part of a discussion, but Fred, who’s in the room, is not saying anything. So it leads me to believe that George is actually really interested in pinning down what it is that Voldemort is doing and is offering at least some advice to further that goal. So I think George really is the more strategic of the two, and Fred is more like the act fast kind of guy.

Andrew: Well, when I do a reread of the books, which I hope to do soon, I’m going to be looking at these two very differently, and critically, for the first time.

Eric: Yes!

Andrew: Just like I said, I keep merging them together. One and the same. Two peas in a pod. But now I’ll try to read them differently.

Eric: That was the whole goal, honestly. But here’s a perfect example to send us out from the differences discussion. Who would like to read it?


“‘You know what?’ said, Fred. ‘I don’t think we are.’

He turned to his twin.

‘George,’ said Fred, ‘I think we’ve outgrown full-time education.’

‘Yeah, I’ve been feeling that way myself,’ said George lightly.

‘Time to test our talents in the real world, d’you reckon?’ asked Fred.

‘Definitely,’ said George.”

And they were off.

Eric: Call and answer, everybody.

Micah: Fred leading again. Before we wrap up this part of the discussion, I do think it’s worth mentioning just how well James and Oliver Phelps portrayed Fred and George in the Harry Potter movies, and just their overall involvement in the fandom. I don’t think there’s an opening that has taken place over the last 15 to 20 years that they have not been a part of; they’re always there. And they do a great job, honestly. And we were fortunate enough to sit down with Oliver Phelps, who plays George, all the way back in Episode 235, so if folks want to go back and give a listen, it was a fun interview. It also, actually, is the same podcast where we sit down with Harry Potter director David Yates.

Eric: Ooh.

Andrew: An eventful episode. All right, so we also asked our Patreon supporters at, what are your favorite moments in which the twins are together? So Kati said, “Giving the Marauder’s Map to Harry. I think this happened mainly for plot reasons, but it was very cool of them.” It was. Iconic item in the series.

Laura: Steph says, “I love every time the twins exceed expectations and decide that they’re going to be part of the resistance. Some examples: using the Extendable Ears to spy on the Order of the Phoenix meeting, starting their own news radio show in the middle of the war, and using their shop to produce defensive supplies for the Ministry.”

Andrew: So cool.

Laura: Yep.

Eric: Stephanie N. also says, “Also, I love the swamp that the twins make too. I think it’s such good magic and I love that the teachers keep a little cordoned off to pay homage to them.”

Andrew: Getting back to Steph’s comment real quick, do you guys think that the Weasley twins would have tried to develop their own COVID vaccine and distributed it at Weasley Wizard Wheezes?

Laura: Ooh.

Eric: Or would they be on the side of the joke vaccine that makes more people…? Like it has fun intentions of being funny, but makes people distrust vaccines all the way more?

Andrew: Oh, gosh, I hope not. Well, maybe it would prevent you from getting COVID, but also you would turn green or something like that.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: Okay, you’re right, because they’re always feeding people stuff that harms them.

Laura: Yeah, you get the vaccine and it prevents you from getting COVID, but when you get the injection, confetti bursts out of your ears. I could see them doing something like that. [laughs]

Andrew: Oh, that’s cool.

Eric: Okay, that’s a good compromise for the worst possible scenario. [laughs]

Micah: Lance Dance says, “I believe the best Weasley twins moment is proving to their family, especially their mother Molly, that they can be just as successful if not more than their older brothers without any type of academic honors, such as being prefect or Head Boy or even graduating from Hogwarts. Up until they open the successful Weasley Wizard Wheezes in Diagon Alley, they’re often undermined of their remarkable abilities due to their carefree and even reckless behaviors in all of the books leading up to Order of the Phoenix. Even Hermione points out that although she disapproves of the contraband products they solicit at Hogwarts, she does note that the type of magic they are conjuring is exceptional. The Weasley twins are prime examples of how you can obtain success when you can combine your passion with persistence and hard work.”

Andrew: Indeed. Natalie B. said, “My favorite film moment was them disturbing the exams with Umbridge! Perfect way to leave the school! Ahaha.”

Laura: Yep, so true. Emily says, “My fave is when Fred and George are carrying food to the table and are using their wands and the cauldrons skid across the table, burning it and sloshing its contents everywhere and making an all-out mess, and Mrs. Weasley has to yell, “FOR HEAVEN’S SAKE! THERE WAS NO NEED – I’VE HAD ENOUGH OF THIS – JUST BECAUSE YOU’RE ALLOWED TO USE MAGIC NOW, YOU DON’T HAVE TO WHIP YOUR WANDS OUT FOR EVERY TINY LITTLE THING!”

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: That might be my favorite moment too. That’s great.

Eric: That is such a kid and parent moment. They’re taking it an extra step.

Micah: Oh, yeah. And those are the two kids you don’t want to reach this stage because you just know everything moving forward is going to be a disaster.

Eric: [laughs] Well, it’s like their Apparating, right, too, where they Apparate everywhere just because they finally can.

Andrew: And I think we would all be in this situation, too, right? If we can finally start conducting magic whenever we want, we would want to use magic all the time.

Eric: Absolutely. It’s part of living.

Laura: It’s like when we all learned how to drive, right? When you first got your driver’s license, it was like, “Does somebody need something from the grocery store? I’ll go!”

[Eric and Micah laugh]

Andrew: Right. “Don’t worry, Mom, I’ll go to the post office for you!”

Micah: Oh, you need a ride? Now it’s like, drive yourself.

Andrew: [laughs] Right. Get an Uber.

Laura: Yeah, now I don’t want to drive at all. [laughs] But back then it was very exciting.

Eric: Sara M. adds, for a group moment, “In the COS book when they think it’s absurd that Harry would be the heir of Slytherin and they go around saying things like ‘Seriously evil wizard coming through.’ It’s silly but a good show of support for Harry. Also, I love their involvement in the DA and how they support it wholeheartedly from the first. Also, love them on ‘Potterwatch’ in Deathly Hallows, fighting about their code names, Rodent and Rapier.”

Micah: And finally, Joseph S. says, “My favorite Fred and George moment is when, in Book 1, they get into trouble for bewitching snowballs to bounce off the back of Professor Quirrell’s turban. At the age of 13 they were literally pelting Voldemort in the face with snow. Legends.”

Laura: Yep, such a great moment.

[Ad break]

Eric: Coming off of our discussion on how to tell them apart and their successes together, we’ve got a segment in which we’ll be reviewing our favorite Fred and George quotes of all time. And that’s actually taking place in bonus MuggleCast, which will be recorded later and go live to our Patreon. But the fun segment we’ve got for the show is a Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes product game. That’s the other thing, is Fred and George… there’s so many things to talk about when talking about them. It’s a massive sort of just subject, and Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes and their products in their joke shops are another brilliant sort of aspect or facet to these already cool characters. And so I thought it’d be fun if we each pick an item from the Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes page on and decide to gift it to one of our fellow hosts.

Andrew: First of all, shout-out to the Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes store in the Wizarding World theme parks. They are very, very good. I mean, just a really magical place, straight out of the movie. So many products that you can only get at the stores. Just really remarkable, if you haven’t been there yet. So my gift is to Micah, and…

Micah: Ooh.

Andrew: Yep. I would get you this Umbridge on a Unicycle gift. Now, this is actually in the theme parks; I’m not sure if you see it in the books and movies. But there is a rope going across the store and there is an Umbridge robot on the rope. Maybe it is in the store in the books or the movies. Yeah, it’s in the movies. And she’s going across and she’s yelling things like “I will have order” and “I really hate children.” [laughs] And Micah, I just like the thought of this rolling across your bedroom back and forth as you record MuggleCast. On silent mode as we record MuggleCast, but yelling at you during the week.

Micah: Nice. Well, I appreciate that gift. And in turn, Andrew, I actually have a gift I think would really do well for you, and that’s the Lucky Dip box. It’s kind of like a Loot Crate, and I just feel like it would be right up your alley. And you never know if you’re going to get something good or you’re going to get something bad, and I have no idea of what would be in this Lucky Dip box. But I just imagine you coming down on Christmas morning, opening it up, and there you have your vibrating broomstick, finally, inside the Lucky Dip box.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Excellent. Okay, sure. I’ll take it. This is like, yeah, this is the original Loot Crate box, it sounds like.

Eric: Well, Laura, judging by how this has turned out, my gift is for you.

[Eric and Laura laugh]

Eric: It is. I promise it wasn’t originally planned for someone else. This is actually something that is found in the Wonder Witch section of the Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes shop, and it is, of course, the Patented Daydream Charm, which is virtually undetectable and highly realistic. Gives you 30-minute daydreams, allows you to slip sort of unnoticed into… I just feel like we all could do with some daydreaming. I haven’t daydreamed in a really long time.

Micah: I think she already has something for that, but that’s okay.

[Everyone laughs]

Micah: No, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to interrupt. Please continue.

Eric: So I think we all deserve a little fantasy every once in a while, and so I’ve gifted this for you.

Laura: Thank you. And in return, I have a gift for you, Eric. So I want to give you Weather in a Bottle. It’s a product that was sold in 1996, according to the wiki. It presumably held wind or water of some kind of weather that when unleashed would affect a small area around the bottle, and I just like the idea of this because it gives you the opportunity to create whatever ambiance you want.

Andrew: That’s fun.

Laura: And I know that sometimes Chicago winters can be a little bit brutal, so having the ability…

Eric: I could have good weather in a bottle!

Laura: Yeah, exactly.

Eric: Oh, that’d be great.

Laura: Yeah, you could unleash it on this particularly frosty days. [laughs]

Eric: Oh, that’s so kind of you.

Andrew: This reminds me of that science experiment as a kid where you would attach two soda liter bottles to each other and then you can make a water hurricane. Remember those?

Eric: Absolutely. 100%.

Laura: I do, yeah.

Andrew: That was so fun.

Eric: I wonder if that’s an intentional reference, because that is such an apt thing. Oh, also, and I got every one of us a gift for the group, so to speak. I got us all Headless Hats.

Laura: Ooh.

Andrew: Oh, nice.

Eric: So we can walk around and it’ll look like our head is missing.

Andrew: Fantastic.

Micah: Just like Fred.

[Andrew and Laura laugh]

Andrew: Okay, well, if anybody has any feedback about today’s episode, you can email or use the contact form on You can also call us, 1-920-3-MUGGLE, that’s 1-920-368-4453, or record a voice memo and email that to We love hearing you, so if you do want to write in, you can write in if you want, but we would prefer a voice memo or voicemail so we can play it on a forthcoming Muggle Mail episode of the show.


Andrew: Okay, it’s time for Quizzitch!

[Quizzitch music plays]

Eric: Last week’s question: On the night Norbert is born, Hagrid makes the trio tea and offers them which food that they refuse? You know, the answer is not rock cakes. Over half the people, 14 people, guessed rock cakes. That’s wrong. The correct answer is stoat sandwiches, everybody.

Micah: Eugh.

Andrew: Blah.

Eric: Stoat sandwiches, another recipe that can be found on Bradley Bakes.

Andrew: But probably much better than just straight stoat.

Eric: Probably much better, yes. No, no, no. Stoats are actually like squirrels. Fun fact, the stoat is my Patronus.

Andrew: Oh.

Eric: Correct guesses who did get it right were submitted by I’m Malfoy; somebody named SpellieEllie; Suhas; Irene; Zack_Attack; Janine; kerost; and Bort Voldemort. Congrats to all of our winners. Next week’s question: We mentioned earlier that the Weasley twins bewitch Percy’s badge to say certain things. They do it twice. What two phrases do they make the badge say? Or badges say? Happens in two separate books. We’re looking for two phrases that the Weasley twins bewitch Percy’s badges to say. Submit your answer to form.

Andrew: Well, a couple other reminders here. You can rate and review us on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to MuggleCast. Follow us on social media; just search for “MuggleCast” on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. And finally, join our community of passionate listeners today at Listener support lets us spend less time on boring Muggle things and more time in the magical wizarding world. So by pledging, you will receive instant access to bonus MuggleCast – and like Eric mentioned, we have a new one coming out this week – the ability to listen to us record live each week, early access to each new episode of MuggleCast as soon as we finish editing it, our Facebook and Discord groups, which are so much fun, and so much more. You can check out all the benefits at Thank you so much for supporting us; it goes a long way. All right, everybody, thank you for listening. I’m Andrew.

Eric: I’m Eric.

Micah: I’m Micah.

Laura: And I’m Laura. Bye.