Transcript – Episode 69

[Show music begins]

Noah Fried: This is Episode 69 of Alohomora! for February 8, 2014.

[Show music continues]

Noah: Hey everybody, I’m Noah Fried.

Kat Miller: I’m Kat Miller.

Michael Harle: And I’m Michael Harle. And joining us today is guest Kelsey Mariani. Welcome to the show, Kelsey.

Kelsey Mariani: Thank you very much.

Michael: Tell us a little bit about yourself. What’s your house? When did you get into Harry Potter? All that good stuff.

Kelsey: Well, I live in Boston, Massachusetts. My house is Hufflepuff. Proud Hufflepuff.

Michael: Oh, wow.

Kat: Wow, I am outnumbered today.

Michael: Yeah, we have three Hufflepuffs.

Kelsey: Yeah, Hufflepower.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: It’s a good chapter for that, too.

Noah: This is a great chapter for Hufflepower.

Kat: Oh, yes.

[Michael laughs]

Kelsey: Yes. So I think I got into Harry Potter pretty much around the time when the books came out. The earliest I remember actually getting a book out from the library was in fifth grade, but I was probably reading them even earlier than that.

Noah: Yeah, I think I was in fifth grade, too. I actually did a book report on Chamber of Secrets , which I rebelliously read first, as some fans have commented on, but I think it really didn’t matter.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Kat: It suits your personality, so that makes sense.

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: To do it disorderly, oh, yes.

Kat: Yes, it does.

Michael: And Kelsey, you’re a great lover of the audiobooks, too, isn’t that right?

Kelsey: Yes, indeed. Yeah, I listen to them a lot at work because with my job I do HTML coding, so if I don’t have something going on in my head I tend to get distracted, so it’s good white noise.

Michael: [laughs] Harry Potter is great white noise.

[Kelsey and Noah laugh]

Kelsey: But I have to stop and rewind it if there’s a really good line that I just like a lot.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Do you have a favorite chapter?

Kelsey: My favorite chapters are mostly all from Book 6, so they’re “The House of Gaunt” and “The Secret Riddle” because I just love Voldemort’s backstory so much. I’m super excited for you guys to get to that book.

Kat: So that’s your favorite book, then, I would assume?

Kelsey: Yeah, favorite book to read, definitely. That and Prisoner of Azkaban, I think, are the ones I really like to read the most.

Michael: Oh, that’s funny. Those are my favorites, too. Prisoner is my favorite, and then Half-Blood is my second favorite, so…

Kelsey: Nice.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: I’m in a minority. I’m aware.

Michael: Yes. You’re over there with the Order of the Phoenix flag, right?

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: That’s my favorite book, too. I just want to remind all the fans to read Chapter 31: “The Third Task” before you continue listening to the episode if you want to get maximum enjoyment out of the podcast because that’s what we’ll be discussing today.

Kat: And we do just want to take a quick moment to thank our sponsor, Audible. Exclusively for fans of Alohomora!, they’re offering a free audio download. They have over 150,000 titles to chose from, so head over to to get yours now.

Michael: But before we go into Chapter 31: “The Third Task,” which is, I think, a lot of our favorite chapters, we’re going to reflect back on last week’s discussion on Chapter 30. You guys left a lot of great comments, both on the main site and the forums, about this chapter, and to start off I just wanted to make sure that we had this clarified because a few people pointed this out, but GhostHeart on the forums was the first person to point out what I’m calling “The Mistake of the Week,” which is [that] actually, Nagini is a Horcrux by now. Voldemort used Bertha Jorkins’s death to turn her into a Horcrux.

Noah: Ooh.

Michael: And GhostHeart’s response comes from our discussion about why Harry was not seeing that vision of Voldemort torturing Wormtail through Nagini and was riding on the back of a giant or very small owl.

Noah: Right, because a perfect explanation would be that Nagini wasn’t yet a Horcrux, but now we’re forced to conclude that Jo had merely not written that idea into the text, yet, that Harry becomes Nagini in dreams.

Michael: Yeah. Yeah, I was still pretty sure that she hadn’t fully fleshed out how Horcruxes work, yet, especially in relation to Harry.

Noah: Unless Voldemort’s return to full body form somehow enriches the connection between the other Horcruxes, and that’s why he becomes Nagini later as opposed to before.

Kat: I think that’s definitely the theory. Yeah.

Michael: If not the correct answer, it’s a great excuse because it’s all we’ve got at this point, right?

Noah: Right.

Kat: Yeah.

Kelsey: Didn’t someone suggest last week that maybe it was because he doesn’t have a full body, yet? He’s technically still a spirit, so that could explain why he’s out of anyone’s body also.

Kat: Yeah. That’s true.

Michael: So we just wanted to let you all know that we caught that mistake. Thank you for catching us on that.

Kat: Let’s not make “Mistake of the Week” a thing.

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Michael: Anyway, next point comes from skgai on the forums, and skgai had a really great, long post on ring composition. I cut it down a little bit because there were a lot of interesting points in there, which you can go check out on the forums, but the prominent thing I wanted to read was that skgai said,

Goblet of Fire is the center book, which means that Book 1 and Book 7 are its counterparts.”

Which I thought was an interesting point because we talked a lot last week that we thought Book 4 connects a lot with Book 2 and 6. Skgai went on to say that

“Quick example: Book 1 starts off with a murder […], Book 4 starts off with a murder […] and Book 7 starts off with a murder […]. Books 1, 4 and 7 are the only ones where Harry and Voldemort actually confront one another. ([There is] no [direct] confrontation in Book 5 [because] Dumbledore steps in) Voldemort, in each of those books, brings himself closer to Harry: Book 1, he makes Harry a Horcrux; Book 4, he makes Harry invincible with his blood; [and] Book 7, he kills himself through Harry.”

So I thought that was really an interesting revision of what we had discussed last week.

Noah: But that’s very cool.

Michael: I was wondering, Noah, if you might know more on this. Do you know, perhaps, a little more about ring composition than we do? Because I didn’t know, going by the theory, that [Book] 4 would actually connect to [Books] 1 and 7.

Noah: I mean, that sort of makes sense, especially that [Books] 1 and 7, [Books] 2 and 6, [Books] 3 and 5, [Book] 4 in the middle… that’s the whole idea. It’s this big ring. And when John Granger put it on his PowerPoint at LeakyCon when I saw him, it matched up really well. But to this comment, it’s very interesting that skgai is noting the direct confrontations between Harry and Voldemort and the other ones in other books being not quite as direct because there are other players. But I still feel like that’s shaky ground.

Michael: Oh, you mean to eliminate Book 5’s confrontation?

Noah: Yeah, because I think there are moments where it’s just the two of them. I would say that.

Michael: Yeah, that’s true because they definitely have a pretty… even though it’s short compared to their other encounters it’s still pretty important to Harry’s development. I mean, Voldemort actually physically possesses him in that book, too.

Kat: Best book! Sorry.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Michael: Your little Order of the Phoenix flag and your little Order of the Phoenix megaphone.

Kat: Hey, you know what? I bet there are a lot of listeners out there [who] really love that book, too.

Noah: That book is my favorite as well, Kat. Order of the Phoenix

Kat: What?

Noah: Yeah.

Kat: I thought you were a Prisoner fan.

Noah: No, I’m a… for the movie, yes, absolutely. And the fifth movie? Oh my gosh, David Yates, what are you doing? Coming in and botching a beautiful thing.

Michael: [laughs] But we’ll get to that later.

Noah: Book 5, all 871 of its beautiful pages… they just captured me.

Kat: Oh, good. Then I won’t be all by myself defending the book. That’s nice.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: That’s nice. Good to know.

Kelsey: Whereas we’re on the other side, with Book 6. So the next one.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Right.

Michael: But while we’re still in Book 4, we also had a comment from InfestedWithNargles on the forums, also another ring composition that I liked. Infested said,

“What if that is the reason why it’s so easy to reread the series over and over again? Since it’s a circle, it never really ends, so when you’re rereading, you’re really just continuing in the circle. As an author, it ensures that your story continues even after all the books have been released, and it lasts forever! I wouldn’t put it past Jo; she’s pretty genius.”

Noah: Hey, guys. Hey, guys. It has quite the shelf life.

[Kat laughs]

Noah: Get it?

Kelsey: Haha, LOL, ROFL.

[Michael laughs]

Noah: Because books go on shelves. I don’t know.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: Nice try. Give yourself a pat on the back.

Michael: I thought maybe there was going to be a ring composition joke somewhere in there, but there wasn’t. It was just literally that it’s a book on a shelf.

Noah: And they’re [sings] radioactive, radioactive.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Kat: Umm, okay.

Michael: Moving on. SpectacularlyHypothetical had a great comment that was posted both on the main site and the forums, and this was about Noah’s discussion that he brought up about Dumbledore and Voldemort’s preoccupation with the past. SpectacularlyHypothetical said,

“Voldemort is obsessed with the idea that he is uniquely ‘chosen’ by history, that he’s the heir of Slytherin’s legacy, and he’s the one to change wizarding culture. Dumbledore, on the other hand, isn’t obsessed with history. In fact, he has every reason to want to forget about the past and focus on the present ([and] to an extent he does). In his youth he flirted with the idea of being ‘chosen by destiny’ but is now deeply suspicious of that attitude. Now he’s incredibly meticulous in his attitude toward the past. He is aware how individual perspective can warp your view of reality, so he uses the Pensieve extensively to ensure he’s always getting an unbiased perspective. As we see from Slughorn’s memory, it’s very difficult to force your own version of events on the Pensieve, so Dumbledore uses it to ensure he’s getting the facts straight, independent of his own musings or theories. I don’t think Dumbledore is obsessed with history; he just knows that Voldemort is, so his strategy for defeating him has to take this into account.”

So what do you guys think of this? I thought it was interesting. There'[re] a few follow up comments on this from the main site and forums as well. But I was interested in seeing what you guys thought.

Noah: Well, I was really thinking of Dumbledore’s preoccupation, perhaps, on the inside, with Ariana and Aberforth. When he drinks that potion, in Half-Blood Prince, and he is reliving these memories that I assumed he has suppressed, this stuff is clearly bothering him, so maybe he’s not outwardly preoccupied with the past other than his Pensieve use, but it definitely haunts him. So yeah, maybe in terms of a conscious obsession Tom Riddle beats him. But…

Kat: No, I actually think Dumbledore is incredibly consciously preoccupied with his past. I think that he takes that into account with every decision that he makes.

Kelsey: Yeah, I agree, especially because he won’t join the Ministry for that reason, even though they ask him many, many times.

Kat and Michael: Mhm.

Noah: So I guess it’s a question of… for Dumbledore it works to his advantage even if he doesn’t… perhaps even, I might say, compulsively he uses it, whereas Voldemort is ruled by it.

Kelsey: Right, I do think he understands that about Voldemort, which is why he goes to the memories so much. He knows that the memories are going to be the key to finding out more about how to defeat him.

Kat: Right. That’s a very, very important distinction between the two.

Michael: Well, yeah, and also, along with that, Dumbledore’s obsession as far as the past with that is… that’s an obsession with… well, not so much an obsession. That’s the part where Dumbledore is looking at figuring out how to defeat Voldemort. I’m thinking, just reflecting on these pasts, that there’s a different purpose coming from him looking at Voldemort’s memories versus reflecting on his own past. Wouldn’t you say?

Kelsey: Right, right.

Michael: He’s not focused on Voldemort’s past for something for his own personal gain or anything like that. He’s passing that on to Harry because he knows that’s how Voldemort works.

Kat: Right. Yep.

Michael: So… but it was interesting because quite a few people, both on the main site and the forums, brought up the dangers of the Pensieve, specifically in relation to Dumbledore. [Those were] Olivia Underwood and SpectacularlyHypothetical on the main site and cat magic and skagai on the forums. Cat magic pointed out first on the forums that

“This seems like a terribly dangerous object, from a psychological and emotional standpoint.”

And delving deeper into that, Olivia Underwood said,

“I believe that Dumbledore was tempted to put his own personal memories of his family in the Pensieve. When he used Gaunt’s ring, it was to see his family again. Given his constant struggle with temptation, I definitely think it must have crossed his mind. This is closely linked to the Mirror of Erised, of course, and Dumbledore must have struggled a hell of a lot with that one. When he talks about men ‘wasting away before it,’ I almost think he’s talking about himself.”

Kat: Absolutely. I agree 1000% with both of those comments.

Michael: Mhm. I think now that we know what Dumbledore sees in the Mirror of Erised when he looks in it, I think we can probably say that with confidence, right?

Kat: Mhm.

Kelsey: Right, definitely.

Noah: And maybe that’s also where it starts Dumbledore’s thinking of Harry as a kindred spirit. Like we were talking about in the last episode, the sort of person who has so many thoughts and feelings that they have to put them away.

Michael: Oh, yeah, when you were discussing that idea of maybe did Dumbledore overestimate Harry’s…

Noah: Right.

Michael: … capacities.

Noah: Mhm.

Michael: And interestingly, skgai said, in relation to this comment,

“Do you think Dumbledore would actually go back, in his darker moments, and view Ariana’s death again? He would probably want to know for sure who killed her, and he might have thought the magic of the Pensieve would be able to expose it. This object is a depressed person’s ultimate torture machine.”

Kelsey: I never thought of it that way, but that’s so true.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: And yeah, I guess because Dumbledore can’t remember how the final… that fight went down, I imagine he wouldn’t be able to actually see it through his memory of what happened. Right?

Noah: Unless it doesn’t work like that.

Kelsey: Right. Yeah.

Kat: Well, he remembers the fight. It’s just [that] they don’t know who shot the curse.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: So…

Kelsey: Yeah. I always assumed that no one saw. There was a big blast or something, and then once the smoke cleared, it turned out that she had been killed by… no one actually saw it.

Noah: Yeah, but could Dumbledore, hypothetically, go back to that memory and maybe pause with his remote or something?

Kat: No. I don’t think you can take anything out of the memories that you don’t already…

Kat and Michael: Know.

Kat: … happened. You can… does that make sense? Does that make sense what I’m trying to say? You can’t go in and…

Michael: No, that…

Kat: … see something that you didn’t see originally.

Noah: But you capture unconscious details, and maybe the Pensieve creates the scene not exactly as you remembered it but how it was because it can show all the details that you were taking in but weren’t thinking about. That’s why it makes sense to use the Pensieve again so that you can look around and observe things that you didn’t notice the first time.

Michael: Yeah, see, that’s…

Kat: Right, but that wouldn’t be… but those are things that you’re seeing. So if you’re looking at the surrounding room, you’re going to take that in, and the Pensieve is going to remember that, but if something happens behind your head that you don’t see, the Pensieve isn’t going to record that in your memory.

Kelsey: But that’s not necessarily true because when they go into the Pensieve at other times they walk around the whole area, not necessarily standing right next to the person whose memory it is.

Michael: Yeah. I’ve always gotten the vibe that the Pensieve actually brings out a whole 360-degree view of the immediate area, and it remembers…

Noah: Unless it creates – for the stuff that you obviously didn’t see – believable scenery based on the content that it already has, like a program.

Kat: Sure.

Kelsey: Oh, that is good.

Kat: Or you walk into the room and pretty much… kind of when you walk into a room that you’ve never been in before, you take a look around, right?

Michael: Yeah.

Kelsey: Right.

Kat: So maybe the Pensieve can build the scene from that?

Kelsey: I don’t know.

Michael: Yeah, no, it would be interesting. And again, we’ll get more into this, I know, with Noah, with the Podcast Question of the Week, but hopefully we can get some more information from Jo on Pottermore about this because…

Kat: I hope so.

Michael: … there'[re] a lot of questionable issues that come up with the Pensieve, especially as a tool of using it for things like finding out about Voldemort’s past and whatnot if you’re relying purely on people’s memories.

Noah: Right.

Michael: But to round out our comment section, I liked the joke that HallowsMaster97 posted on the main site. It goes “Why did Barty Crouch stop drinking?” [in a high-pitched voice] Why? “It was a…”

Kat: [in a high-pitched voice] Why? [back to normal] Sorry.

Michael: [laughs] It was making him moody!

Kat: Oh, funny.

Noah: Oh.

Kelsey: Oh no.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: I’ve seen that everywhere. Not to…

Michael: I’ve never seen that one before.

Kelsey: Oh, well…

Noah: HallowsMaster97 can still be very funny. I’m just saying that I…

Michael: Well, well, HallowsMaster made sure to give credit to the vlogbrothers on that one. But I did want to also make sure and shout out to all of you who left comments that I could not read this week, but there were a lot of great topics this week. From the main site: ArchdukeSeverus, AurorPhoenix, awkwardjenny – I love these screenames – Dan Sharp, DolphinPatronus, Emily Theurer, Harrison, the head girl, Jake Pontzer, James Mahoney – who’s also GhostHeart on the forums – kmchef13, madame_lestrange and PixieDragon, and Victoria Kirby. And on the forums we had conversations going from AmericanMuggle007, Hufflepuffskein, Honeydukes Empire, MartinMiggs, texaskid, and Tweak6. The topics you guys came up with this week ranged from the morality of Barty Crouch to little Crouch’s acting skills. That was quite a big topic.

[Kat laughs]

Kelsey: Yeah.

Michael: Dumbledore vouching for Snape, the symbolism of the Hallows, who Bertha Jorkins saw kissing – that was a big thing for Kat, I know…

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: … as well as Pensieve travel, and of course the recent Ron and Hermione controversy. You can check out all those topics both at the main site and on the forums, and participate if you’re curious to see what other people have to say.

Noah: Excellent sum-up, Michael.

Michael: Thank you, Noah.

Kat: As always.

[Michael laughs]

Noah: Yes, and very…

Kat: Claps – wait, snaps – for Michael. Snaps.

[Kat, Kelsey, and Noah snap]

Michael: Oh, I get snaps? Thank you.

Noah: Snaps for fans. Snaps for fans having great talks.

Michael: We’re in a beat poetry club. Is that where we’re…?

Kat and Michael: Yeah.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Noah: I was sitting in my room so alone I had to be Voldemort. Snap, snap.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Kelsey: That’s the entire Potter series in one sentence.

Noah: I like to fly. I didn’t want to see her that day. Oh, Hedwig, please come back.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: I won’t go on, but I’ve got jams. I’ve got jams. I’ve got jams.

Kat: [laughs] You’ve got jams. Nice.

Noah: On to the responses to the Podcast Question of the Week.

“In this chapter, we are introduced to the Pensieve, with Dumbledore saying that it relieves the feeling of having ‘too many thoughts and memories crammed into [one’s] head.’ Dumbledore goes on to describe the process of using the Pensieve, saying that ‘one simply siphons the excess thoughts from one’s mind [and] pours them into the basin.’ How exactly does the magic of this device work? How do you use your wand to pick a memory, and in doing so, are you actually removing the memory from your brain or making a magical copy of it? How many memories can one Pensieve hold? Is the substance alone or the bowl alone what operates the magic or both? How do you actually get out of a memory? And what happens if you journey beyond the memory’s ‘edge’?”

Michael: And that was me being modest with my questions. I have twenty more. [laughs]

Kat: You hear those, Jo?

[Michael laughs]

Noah: So there’s a lot of confusing territory wherever the Pensieve is concerned. So in response to “Are memories completely removed?”, this comment is from Porkchopsandwiches.

[Kat and Michael laugh]


“I agree with the idea that ‘removing’ a memory simply creates a copy. Otherwise, when Harry asks Prof. Slughorn for the memory, he would have no idea what he was talking about.”

Kat: Ohhh. Truth.

Kelsey: Hmm.

Noah: Right?

Kat: That’s legitimate.

Noah: So that answers that question.

Kat: Good point, Porkchopsandwiches. I’m going to call you “PCS.”

Michael: So then does that reference, then, the fact that that comes after Slughorn pulls his altered memory?

Noah: Right.

Michael: Hmm.

Kelsey: But he could have made a copy specifically because Dumbledore asked him for that memory. I wouldn’t know exactly how that would work, but he could have replicated it…

Noah: Ooh.

Kelsey: … for that specific reason so that he could alter it and then hand it over. [laughs]

Noah: So…

Michael: Hmm.

Kat: Do you think maybe they get to choose? Hmm. Like Eternal Sunshine style? If you want to remove it, it’s gone. If you want to keep a copy and share it with somebody, you can do that too.

Kelsey: Like when you download pictures from your camera. [laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Kelsey: It asks you if you want to delete them or keep them.

Kat: Right.

Michael: Yeah, and the reason I was wondering it is because, as the quote in the Question of the Week points out, Dumbledore kind of suggests to Harry that he uses the Pensieve to make room in his head.

Noah: Right. Oh, okay.

Michael: I mean, I think he’s speaking more poetically, as Dumbledore is wont to do, [laughs] but I always got… I got the sense when I first read it that he was actually kind of moving the memory from his head and putting it in the bowl. And I think the Slughorn memory… that’s – [laughs] metaphorically and literally – kind of foggy in this respect…

[Kat laughs]

Michael: … because he doesn’t give Harry the real memory.

Kat: Right, it’s a unique experience with that one.

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: I’m not sure we can use that as an example.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Noah: I just… I don’t think it’s possible to delete memories, though, because… imagine that you could do that and you’d just suddenly have gaps when people would ask you questions, and Dumbledore…

Michael: That’s true.

Noah: … is fully cognizant of everything even though he’s madly putting his memories in there. So what if, perhaps, his mind is linked to the Pensieve in some way, and putting them in merely organizes them, and it therefore kind of organizes his thoughts to put the threads in there so that maybe the Pensieve, in a way, becomes the mother brain?

Michael: Hmm.

Noah: And Dumbledore’s walking brain is something different.

Kelsey: Right, because that would then raise the question if one Pensieve can be used by multiple people or if it’s something that you only can use for one person if you have to… however you purchase or make it… whatever you do.

Kat: I feel like I would never want to share one.

Kelsey: Oh, right.

Kat: I don’t want my thoughts mingling with somebody else’s. That’s like sharing underwear with somebody.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: I don’t know.

Kelsey: But is it, though? Or is it just like throwing…

Noah: I share thoughts with people all the time. I’m doing it right now.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kelsey: Or is it more like just throwing keys or buttons or something in there? I’m not sure exactly how they would mingle together or if they even would. It’s just a whole other thing, like how you don’t know what the substance necessarily is because they’re describing it as a liquid or a gas, but then I suppose both of those things would meld together. [laughs]

Kat: Maybe they’re different colors and that’s how you tell them apart.

Kelsey: Aha.

Kat: Depending on your aura or something like that.

Kelsey: Yeah. Or only if you put them together, because they do kind of look all the same color whenever… oh, well, that’s movie canon, but…

Kat: That’s a movie-ism, yeah.

Kelsey: Yeah, because… do they ever say…

Noah: Hey, guys, guys. Can you drink the memories? Would you drink your memories? [laughs]

Michael: Oh, God.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: A memory cocktail? [laughs]

Kat: Well, I mean, Snape cries them out, so what if it had fallen into his mouth?

Michael: Well, in the books he doesn’t cry them out. They come gushing out of his ears.

Kelsey: And out of his wounds and everything.

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: Oh, that’s right.

Michael: [laughs] It’s a lot weirder in the book.

Noah: So there’s a whole hubbub about them coming out, but can they go back in?

Kelsey: Maybe that’s how you put them back in. You have to drink them.

[Michael laughs]

Kelsey: I don’t know if you would necessarily put them on your wand and then wave it over your head until it caught [laughs] and sank back in.

Kat: Oh my lord.

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: Well, this leads us nicely to our next comment, “How many memories could one Pensieve hold?” which whenever I read that line I think of Ariel from The Little Mermaid singing because it almost…

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Kelsey: Aww.

Kat: Oh, that’s cute! I’m going to think of that forever now, too.

Michael and Noah: [singing] “How many memories could one Pensieve hold?”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: [singing] “Looking around here you’d think, sure…”

Noah: This comment is from GhostHeart, also known as James Mahoney on the forums…

[Kelsey laughs]

Michael: [singing] “… she’s got memories.”

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: I love it.

Michael: Sorry, Noah. Keep going.

Kat: Noah is all pissy.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Keep singing, Michael!

[Kelsey laughs]

Michael: No, no. No, Ariel can come back later. Keep going, Noah.

[Noah laughs]

Michael: You have relevant points.

Noah: [continues]

“Because of how the whole Pensieve is portrayed in the books, I believe there is no limit to how many memories it can hold. It describes the bowl of having carved runes and strange symbols on it, so maybe they’re related to a kind of ‘memory magic,’ so you can put thoughts in and review them at your leisure. I think the substance is just the memories, nothing else. I’m guessing there is some spell to get out of a memory, and it also probably ‘throws you out’ once you reach the edge.”

And then in response to that comment, Bill White said,

“Runes are often used in magic to alter the abilities of a substance.”

And he went on to cite the basin that Dumbledore and Harry try to take the locket out of in Half-Blood Prince. So…

Michael: Mhm.

Noah: … I didn’t even think about that. These runes on the bowl itself control or alter the substance that you put in. So maybe that’s how it works.

Michael: Yeah, I was wondering that because the… I saw it, just assuming that when you acquire a Pensieve, you just get a bowl, an empty bowl with runes and…

Kat: Yeah, that’s what I would say.

Michael: Okay.

Noah: So what are these runes? Are they some ancient magical language that, when added to your thoughts, allow you to experience your thoughts in a much deeper way?

Kat: Well, runes are a real thing and they’re used for everything: protection and all sorts of things. So without knowing what they look like, it’s hard to say what they are or what they do, if anything.

Michael: That’s great, though, the reference that Bill White made to the fact that… because I didn’t remember this, and it’s not in the film because they designed it differently, but there [are] runes around the bowl in the solution…

Noah: Right.

Michael: … that Dumbledore has to drink because that’s also an issue of reliving memories.

Kat: They could be… I mean, those runes could be protection runes, they could be rememberance ruins… runes, not ruins.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: They could be anything.

Noah: I’m pretty sure…

Kat: I mean, it’s really hard to say without getting details.

Noah: I’m pretty sure they alter the substance somehow. Like…

Kat: I’m not sure that that’s possible.

Kelsey: It’s all to the properties of the substance, more likely.

Michael: Well, yeah, because the runes have to be the thing that make the memory something that you can go in, right?

Kat: Yes, that’s what I would say.

Michael: Yeah. Like, that’s where they come in? Because it’s already kind of… they’re not altering the way [that] the substance appears because that’s already… that’s what it looks like when you pull it out.

Noah: So you’re saying that they open a door to another dimension?

Michael: Yeah, kind of. In a way.

Kat: In a way.

Michael: Yeah.

Kelsey: Similar to what you have when you have that… whatever that spell is that Hermione puts on the bag to make it an ever-extending bag, make it bigger on the inside.

Michael: Hmm.

Kelsey: Something similar to that.

Noah: Yeah.

[Kat whistles a tune]

Noah: Except a little bit more wild than that. Because you can go in this one and…

Kelsey: [laughs] Right.

Noah: … mess around.

Kat: [stops whistling] Sorry.

Noah: Next comment…

Michael: Yeah, I knew you were going to make a Doctor Who reference. I knew you couldn’t resist.

[Michael and Kelsey laugh]

Kat: Hey, I didn’t say a word.

Michael: [laughs] You didn’t need to.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Noah: Next comment from Leah McCurdy:

“I always thought that it was the liquid itself that stored the memories (and is different than the memories themselves) and had the magical properties to allow the user to re-experience the memories contained within it. When Harry’s nose touches the liquid, he feels transported into the memory. I always assumed it simulated a sort of hyper dream experience… their sub-conscious dream state kicks in and they can experience whatever memories are stored there, be them their own or someone else’s.”

So that’s kind of cool.

Kat: Hmm.

Michael: So that’s saying that instead of just the runes, there’s actually a liquid that comes in it too, that affects this.

Kat: And it would also imply that Leah definitely thinks that you would walk into a room and see Harry with his head stuck in a bowl.

Noah: Right.

Michael: [laughs] Yes.

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: As soon as you touch it, your consciousness goes nuts and you just kind of sit there, and luckily Harry didn’t drown [in] the liquid thoughts.

Kat: I don’t think… I mean, they wouldn’t be in use if you could drown in them, let’s be honest.

Kelsey: Right. [laughs]

Kat: Maybe it’s a hallucinogenic, like she’s saying.

Noah: Wait, guys, guys. So when Dumbledore and Harry use the Pensieve together…

[Michael laughs]

Noah: … are they just sitting next to the desk with their heads in the bowl?

[Everyone laughs]

Kelsey: Do they ever clarify exactly how big the bowl is? Would that even be possible?

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: Is Dumbledore just quietly putting his head on Harry’s shoulder?

[Kelsey laughs]

Michael: There were quite a few debates about that, actually, in the forums, about whether… if they’re actually both sticking their heads in the bowl.

[Kelsey and Noah laugh]

Michael: There’s still a few people and… I’m more inclined to believe this just because the book doesn’t really give evidence to the contrary, that they do actually physically go into the memory, because I think the movie canons really warped that for everybody.

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: Especially from around Order, Half-Blood onwards, because Goblet, they did it closer to the way the book describes it.

Kat: Right, Harry is actually in the memory and not seeing it from a third person’s point of view.

Michael: Yeah, exactly. It got a lot more visually appealing by Half-Blood, definitely, and I think more fitting for a film version of what you’re doing.

Kat: Oh, when you could actually see what was going on on-screen.

Michael: Yes.

Kat: That’s two years away, so…

Michael: Color correction madness. But yeah, I’m still inclined to believe that they actually go in, although I do like the vision of Harry just…

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Noah: I’m a little biased of what I would like it to be.

Michael: [laughs] With Harry’s head just stuck in a bowl and Dumbledore right in the same bowl?

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Kat: What if you could bring a snack with you?

Noah: Hagrid walks in. “Headmaster, I… I… oh, sorry.”

[Kelsey and Noah laugh]

Michael: “I’ll come back later.”

Noah: Oh, yeah.

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Kelsey: “I’m off to not spread any rumors about this.”

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: Right.

Noah: “You’re not going to believe what I saw the Headmaster and Harry doing.”

[Everyone laughs]

Kelsey: “I shouldn’t have told you kids that. I’m so sorry.”

Noah: “I shouldn’t have told you that.”

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: But one more question about Pensieves – which you rose, Michael – how does one leave a memory? Do you just wait for it to end, or is there some actual deliberate means you can use? So this comment is from HallowsMaster97:

“Anyone can enter a memory without much of a struggle but coming out of it is different. I suppose the most obvious method would be to wait for the memory to end, then your mind must realize there is nothing more to observe and it comes out of the Pensieve. However, if you wanted to get out of the memory, I imagine the method is similar to the one used for Apparition. After all, Apparition requires a considerable amount of mental effort and that would explain why Dumbledore knows how to get out of memories whilst Harry struggles.”

Michael: Hmm.

Noah: I thought that was kind of interesting. I mean, I don’t know if there’s any evidence for it but it’s cool.

Kat: But then that begs the question, is Apparating inside a memory inside Hogwarts okay?

Michael: Ooh.

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Noah: He’s Dumbledore.

Kelsey: I don’t know.

Kat: No, but seriously…

Noah: Right.

Michael: We’ll have to get Hermione to check in Hogwarts, A History on that one.

Noah: I don’t know.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: Now there’s a puzzle. See, that raises a few questions for me in itself, which is… because the example we see in this instance is that Harry… as far as waiting for the memories to end. They do and then they just keep going into other memories, and ostensibly, from what the book showed, if Harry had stayed he just kind of would have been cycling through all of Dumbledore’s memories. I thought the way that it was set up was that it’s kind of like a slideshow in a way…

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: … and it will just keep… and it’s stuck on repeat.

Kat: But maybe because these were all the same topic, that’s why that happened.

Michael: That could… well…

Kat: We don’t know what would have happened if Dumbledore hadn’t shown up.

Michael: Well, because it’s implied too, you’re right, that Dumbledore was looking at those memories specifically…

Kat: Right.

Michael: … for evidence. So there’s that.

Noah: I think with the Pensieve, I think it’s more like an iTunes playlist. You can kind of pick which set of memories you want to go through as opposed to a Spotify where you just kind of go… whatever you want.

Kelsey: Right, and you could organize them too, so that sort of structure would make sense. You could organize them into your little memory playlist and go back to whichever ones…

Noah: Right. Because I’m sure [that] Dumbledore would think some odd ones go together and he’d make interesting connections. But then again…

Michael: I like the idea… oh, go ahead, Noah. Go ahead.

Noah: But then again, the mind wanders naturally, so maybe the Pensieve also kind of wanders in the direction that the user is going at the time or maybe on its own. Maybe it has some extra consciousness that kind of follows your thoughts and kind of brings you places.

Kelsey: Yeah, that seems like a really useful feature of a Pensieve to have specifically. Like, that’s a reason why if I knew that they did that, then I would want one [laughs] so it would help me make connections that I wouldn’t ordinarily have made.

Noah: Right.

Michael: Hmm, that’s interesting that the Pensieve can actually do that for you in some way. Huh. See, and the other thing with the getting out of the memory with the Apparition, I like that suggestion just because the book doesn’t really… Harry doesn’t actually stay in there long enough to actually start wondering, “How am I going to leave?”

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Michael: He doesn’t actually ask that of himself because Dumbledore shows up, and it seems kind of unfortunate if Apparition is the way because then Harry couldn’t have gotten out…

Noah: Right.

Michael: … unless somebody had taken him out.

Kelsey: Right.

Michael: And I’m assuming that that’s part of it because Dumbledore never instructs Harry, “This is how you’re going to leave the memory when it’s done,” like later in Half-Blood Prince.

Kat: What happens in Chamber? It kicks him out, right?

Michael: Yeah, but that’s the book.

Kelsey: Technically it finishes, I think, the part that he…

Kat: Right, but it’s still a memory.

Kelsey: … wanted it to show… the part that Voldemort wanted to show him I think stopped. That’s all he wanted to show him at that point.

Noah: The book definitely has an alien consciousness inside it too, so…

Kat: That’s true. That’s very true.

Michael: Yeah. Yeah, the book is a Horcrux, so that’s a whole…

Noah: What?!

[Michael laughs]

Kelsey: Spoilers.

Michael: Oh, snap.

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: “What?”

Michael: Oh, like 10 years too late.

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: So there are many different… lots of interesting takes we can have on the Pensieve and questions. This is perfect for the forums. I hope fans continue to talk about it as we get into the other books because the Pensieve is just going to come back. What I’m most curious about is, are you really just kind of putting your head in the bowl?

Kat: Right.

Noah: And if that’s so, what implications does that have?

Kat: And can you bring a snack with you? I’m curious about that.

[Michael laughs]

Noah: Can you bring a snack with you into the memory?

Kat: Yeah, yeah. I’m kind of hungry at the moment…

[Kelsey laughs]

Kat: So, I was just thinking about a snack.

Noah: Good question. Good questions all. You know what that reminds me of?

Kat: What? What’s it remind you of?

Noah: The Book Thief.

Kat: Oh, yeah? What about it?

Noah: It was… well, I read it a couple of years ago and it’s a really great book written by Markus Zusak. It’s completely unrelated to Harry Potter but it’s written in the same genre – Young Adult. It takes place during World War II and this girl, she’s living in a town that’s about to be overrun by Nazis, but she discovers books and her love for reading. And that message is so core to what Harry Potter fans believe that… I just want to know if you guys have read that book, too.

Kat: No, I actually haven’t read it.

Michael: I haven’t read it… you have?

Kelsey: I have, yes.

Michael: You have.

Kelsey: Yes indeed. It’s very good, actually. [laughs] It’s a fun fact but it’s narrated by Death actually – that’s how the narrative is put together. So of course, when I’m picturing Death throughout the book, I’m picturing it as sort of a Dementor-like creature roaming around…

[Michael laughs]

Kelsey: … of course that nobody can actually see. But I imagine that he would also bring feelings of dread, being what he is.

Michael: See, now I’m going to picture Dementors when I finally get around to…

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: I’m probably… see, I never have a chance to actually casually read books anymore, I’m so busy. But I know I could probably download it. I’ve never really listened to audiobooks that much, but I know that Audible would be a great place to download this book from. After all, Audible is the best place for all of your audio downloading needs, and right now actually, Audible has a really great special offer for our U.S. and Canadian listeners. They can visit our unique link created specifically for that and get a free audio download today right now. They just have to go to

Kat: And of course our listeners could also download it using Audible’s listener program. So, basically you purchase a book credit at a super-low monthly rate and you can use them at any time for any product that Audible offers.

Michael: With over 150,000 titles, you have a lot of options. So head over to and start downloading directly to your computer for easy listening on burned CDs, MP3 players, and even your iPad, iPhones, or Androids. Again, the website made just for you is So visit for your free download today.

Kat: Let’s jump into the chapter for this week.

[Goblet of Fire Chapter 31 intro begins]

Harry: Point me!

[Sound of a wand emitting a spell]

Harry: Chapter 31.

[Sound of rustling]

Harry: “The Third Task.”

[Sound of Fleur Delacour screaming]

[Goblet of Fire Chapter 31 intro ends]

Kat: Boom! So guys, here we are. We are at the Third Task. I am like super jazzed for this chapter. I don’t know about you guys, it’s one of my favorites in this book, for sure.

Noah: I actually was reading it and thought it moved really quick. Just bam, bam, bam, everything, right to the Third Task – which makes sense because it’s the chapter about the Third Task. But I remember reading maybe years ago that people thought she rushed the ending of Goblet of Fire. And for the first time while reading it, I was thinking maybe, yeah. Maybe there’s a little of that.

Kat: I know, it’s funny. I actually thought the same thing when I was reading it this time around. It didn’t feel rushed to me but I remembered it being a lot longer.

Michael: Yeah, I did too.

Noah: Uh-huh.

Kat: And I was surprised at how short it was. Not the chapter but the actual maze part.

Michael: Mhm.

Kelsey: Right. Because they kind of skip over areas where nothing’s happening. At one point Harry says that ten minutes passed and he doesn’t encounter anything, so it gets kind of skipping forward to the good stuff.

Kat: Because I’ve always said that this, I felt like, was their biggest failing in the movie.

Noah: Yeah.

Kat: Okay, not their biggest failing…

[Michael laughs]

Kat: … but the one plot thing that I really, really, really wanted to see in there.

Michael: Oh yeah.

Noah: I wanted to see the sphinx.

Kat: Because I had enjoyed it so much in the book, I wanted to see it in the movie.

Michael: No, I didn’t…

Kat: And I guess I just remembered there being more…

Michael: It gets horribly and equally botched. You would think that this… no part anywhere in the Harry Potter series compares to this as far as being a great opportunity to adapt for a video game.

[Noah laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: This could have been the best moment in the video games ever. This section takes like ten seconds… [laughs]

Kat: Yeah. It’s awful…

Michael: [laughs] So bad!

Noah: Well, the video game… they were going off on the movie, right?

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: Goblet is where they really started to mirror the movies and it was so badly structured. The Third Task just gets completely gypped in the game. The hedges don’t even eat you like they do in the movie. [laughs]

Kat: Right. No, I agree.

Noah: That was EA, right?

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: Yeah, they’re all EA.

Noah: So I think we can safely say – “EA Sports, it’s in the game” – it wasn’t in the game.

Kat: It wasn’t in the game.

Kelsey: Not at all.

Michael: It wasn’t in the game. [laughs]

Kat: But let’s rewind our Pensieve and go back to the beginning of the chapter here. So Chapter 30 ended where Harry had left Dumbledore’s office learning all this crazy information. So the trio are now sitting in the common room discussing everything that Harry had overheard and been told by Dumbledore. So of course, Snape comes up and the whole trust issue again, blah, blah, blah – that’s old hat at this point. Then they talk about Rita Skeeter, Ludo Bagman, and Winky, because Hermione remembers that Rita Skeeter had brought up something about Ludo Bagman earlier and then she remembers the Winky thing. I’m not sure why that’s relevant at the moment, why we’re reminded of that moment…

Michael: Oh, as far as Ludo Bagman?

Kat: No, just as to why Hermione is remembering it right now. What is Jo trying to remind us of?

Michael: Well, as far as Hermione trying to connect… what this is is that they’re still trying to connect the dots. Because I think what’s important at this point is that we’re still trying to figure out… as readers we don’t see how the Barty Crouch stuff fits into what we’re about to find out and what’s going on with the Triwizard Tournament. And we’re about to be distracted for the whole rest of the chapter by the maze.

Kat: Right.

Michael: Which obstensibly has nothing to do with that. So we have to get in our little Harry/Ron/Hermione huddle where they confer and go over the clues one more time. Because this is the last chance we really have to get the clues lined up…

Noah: Yeah.

Michael: … before things really… because from this point onward, things just hurtle towards a conclusion.

Noah: I feel like the way Jo operates as a writer often is to just throw random details in there into these trio discussions, because they’re relevent to the detective story but we don’t quite know until later. So she just kind of throws these little things out there.

Kat: Okay, then what use is Madame Maxime who is also brought up in this conversation?

Michael: Red herring. Maxime and Bagman are red herrings.

Kat: Okay.

Michael: Because the thing is if she didn’t mention them…

Kelsey: But they were talking about…

Michael: Oh, go ahead, Kelsey. Go ahead.

Kelsey: They were talking about Bagman before. He was one of the suspects that they had lined up with Sirius about who might have put Harry’s name in the Goblet of Fire. So that’s probably why she’s bringing that up in particular. I’m not so sure about Madame Maxime… I don’t know, maybe to get her more on our side for the…

Noah: Just to really confuse us.

Kat: Yeah. She’s good at that.

Michael: Yeah. If you didn’t have Maxime and Bagman mentioned, you would have all the key players. And you could possibly link it all together.

Noah: Because we really don’t suspect Moody.

Michael: No. Not at all.

Kat: No. Not at all.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Not at all. Okay, so then after this little powwow, they head up to bed and Harry finds Neville who’s sound asleep in bed and he has this whole… he starts thinking about how Neville has it much worse, which I think we can all agree with, and how he feels a rush of hanger – anger – hanger…

Michael: Hanger?

Kat: Hanger! [growls]

[Michael growls]

Kat: That’s one of the celebrity names for anger and hate.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: He feels a rush of hanger towards the people who did it to Neville and his parents. I remembered this moment and for some reason, it hit me a little harder this time. It’s really sad and I try not to feel pity for people, but Neville… I just feel bad for the kid.

Michael: No, I mentioned this in the last chapter when Dumbledore clarifies with Harry that that is the case. That’s where it hit me, because… it’s funny, up until then I had never… of course it was sad, but it never struck me in this particular way that this read has.

Noah: Me too.

Kelsey: Right.

Michael: And maybe, too, it’s just… I think as far as the development of the fandom, Neville of course grew very prominantly over time and is now a very popular character. And with more fleshing out of his background and history, that might have also shaped that as well.

Noah: Right.

Kat: Do you think maybe we’ll get some information about this kid in this book? Or is she going to wait until the very end to tell us about Neville?

Michael: Oh, you mean through Pottermore?

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: Mmm…

Kelsey: I’m not sure. Probably she would wait until the fifth book.

Michael: Yeah.

Kelsey: Because I think that might be part of why this part – rereading it – hits you so hard this time. Because now you know about… you’ve seen that. For me, the part that gets me about the Neville situation is when Dumbledore says that his parents don’t recognize him, and then you see that in the fifth book and you’re like, “Oh my God, this is real, this is awful.” And it really is – Harry really hits the nail on the head there. It’s like is just way way worse than not having any parents at all. It’s just… because you have to see them in front of you, and they just don’t know who you are, and that’s the worst thing that I can probably fathom.

Michael: I’m wondering if Neville, sadly, if he will get a Pottermore entry because…

Kat: Oh my God, he better.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Michael: … he’s pretty fleshed out in the books as far as Rowling likes to usually go. I’m thinking if there’s more revealed about him it’ll be through other entries that aren’t necessarily about him. But he may…

Kat: I guess I just want his background and his family story. Obviously, we know a lot about Neville, but… I don’t know, I just… because he’s the could-have-been…

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: … I feel like I want more about him.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Kat: A lot more.

Kelsey: And it will be interesting to see more about his family and that uncle who threw him out a window!

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kelsey: What was with that guy?

Noah: Yeah.

Kat: So also in this little diatribe Harry’s having with himself we get another little mention of Little Crouch, which is just again has no… saying Jo kind of throwing that in there like, “Oh, don’t forget about this person!” Blah, blah, blah…

Noah: Mhm.

Michael: Well, and it’s interesting, too, because she works it in so well because she’s like, “Don’t forget about him… and feel sorry for him because he went to jail and died.”

Kat: Right.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Right. Exactly. Don’t suspect him at all because he’s definitely dead, and definitely a bad guy, right? Right.

Michael: Because nobody who has ever been suspected of being dead has ever come back from supposedly being dead. That’s never happened in the series.

Kat: Never!

Kelsey: Definitely not in the last book.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Fingers crossed. Okay, so the next day Ron and Hermione are – very nicely, actually – skipping studying for their exams to help Harry, and…

Michael: I don’t know why in the doc here I just read it as “Hermione and Ron skip.” I just saw them hand-in-hand going down the corridor.

[Kat, Kelsey, and Michael laugh]

Kat: It’s that solid relationship that they have.

Michael: Yeah. No, it was a nice image.

Kat: Oh, good.

Michael: Considering everything from the past week, it’s a nice image. [laughs]

Kat: Good. I’m glad.

Michael: That’s all I’m going to say.

Noah: Did you guys pick up the line where McGonagall was tired of walking in on Harry, Ron, and Hermione?

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Kat: Can you let me get there?

Kelsey: I picture her from the movie going, “Oh, why is it always you three again?” and she’s always just studying. [laughs] It’s nothing that big a deal.

Noah: On the stairs, just in the corridors, in the dungeons.

Kelsey: Everywhere.

Noah: Everywhere.

Kat: Didn’t I tell you not to make jokes about the number of this episode?

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: And Hagrid saw it. Poor Hagrid.

Kat: Okay. We’re done.

Kelsey: Oh! [laughs]

[Noah laughs]

Kat: And so I guess the part that I giggled about in this was when Hermione was like, “Well, at least we’ll get top marks in DADA because we would have never found these hexes in class.” And I’m like, right, but do they… that implies that they quiz them on things that they don’t learn.

Michael: Yeah, the…

Noah: It’s a practical.

Michael: These… some of these are… I guess the Impedimenta hex/jinx, that’s a pretty commonly used one, isn’t it?

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: We see that again.

Kelsey: It’s not damaging, but…

Michael: No!

Kelsey: You would learn that in a classroom. It wouldn’t be dangerous like Reducto, which incidentally is my favorite spell, but… [laughs] Yeah, I can’t see you learning that in a classroom without injuring somebody, but Impedimenta… that seems like classic things that they would teach you.

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: Right, right, exactly. Like the Shield Charm, which is also mentioned. And Harry’s having trouble with that, which I thought was telling since he’s going into a battle basically.

Michael: Yeah, that’s another…

Kat: He can’t shield himself.

Noah: That’s Protego, right?

Michael: Yeah, that’s Protego, and the…

Noah: Right.

Michael: And this is where canon really gets foggy on this and especially with the new material that’s been introduced. Because all of these spells are contained in the Book of Spells – the Wonderbook Sony Book of Spells video game. My check is in the mail.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Michael: The book is implied to be in the Restricted Section and not something that students have easy access to, because it is suggested that it’s canon.

Noah: Right.

Michael: But the book contains all of these really basic spells that aren’t forbidden, so to speak. And then of course you’ve got the movies and the video games which vary the frequency of how often we see certain spells. In the video games, obviously, because you have to do that more combative stuff more often, Protego comes up a lot. But I think on an everyday basis, you probably wouldn’t use Protego that much.

Kat: No, probably not.

Michael: Only in a dueling situation, probably.

Kat: Or if your name is Harry Potter.

Noah: In the video games, it became the standard guard. That was your guard spell. You needed to do it, in fact, like constantly. Unless you were going to go fully offensive. Different techniques.

Kat: There was one part that really made me laugh also again on this page, there [were] a lot of these little moments, where Hermione manages to break through Harry’s Shield Charm with a well-placed Jelly-Legs Jinx, and it says that Harry wobbled around the room for ten minutes afterwards.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: And I just had the best picture in my head of… So you remember when Harry loses his bones in Chamber?

Michael: [laughs] Yes.

[Kelsey laughs]

Kat: I imagined that with his legs.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: It was very weird, and I was cracking up picturing Dan doing it.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: Because that made it twenty times funnier to me for some reason.

Kelsey: [laughs] Also, am I the only one that…

Noah: I can’t believe [that] he couldn’t guess that the counter-curse was just Unjellify.

Kelsey: [laughs] I was just going to say that.

[Noah laughs]

Kelsey: That was the first thing I thought of, when she had to look it up.

Michael: I feel like Rowling knew about that whole thing with StarKid…

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: Really?

Michael: … because she gave us the incantation on Pottermore for the Jelly-Legs Jinx, which I was not expecting to be revealed.

Noah: Is the counter-curse actually Unjellify?

Michael: No, she doesn’t give the counter-curse, but the jinx is not Jelly-Legs Jinx.

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: Right.

Michael: It’s actually Locomotor Wibbly.

Kelsey: [laughs] Wibbly.

Michael:Locomotor Wibbly.”

Kat: Okay…

Noah: I’ll remember that next time I utter a Jelly-Legs Jinx.

Michael:Jelly-Legs Jinx.”

[Kelsey and Noah laugh]

Kat: All right, so as they’re practicing, Ron decides to take five or whatever, for whatever. Because he’s lazy. I don’t know, he’s Ron.

[Noah laughs]

Kat: And he’s looking out the window and he sees Malfoy sitting by a tree, with his hand up to his mouth, and Harry says, “It looks like he’s talking to a walkie-talkie.”

Noah: He’s actually checking his breath.

Kat: What?

Noah: He’s checking his breath.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: I don’t think he’s checking his breath.

Kelsey: With all his friends.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: “Hey guys, guys, is this…”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: “Goyle, Goyle, check my breath!”

[Kelsey and Noah laugh]

Kat: I just remember thinking… First off, “walkie-talkie” – random reference. Like, hello, this book is clearly about the ’90s. Anyway…

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Kat: And then second, why does Hermione ignore that? Because Draco is obviously up to something, so does she just have too much else on her mind? Like with helping Harry and worrying about Rita and all of that? This seems like something Hermione would kind of latch on to.

Michael: Oh, really? I mean, I think the thing with Harry and helping him is part of it, definitely a big part of it. And I think the other… And we see this a lot more in Book 6, but Hermione has never shown much interest in Malfoy’s doings. The only time she really gets invested in that is Chamber of Secrets, when they come up with their whole crazy theory that Malfoy is the person who opened the Chamber. And that’s kind of the one time she’s really invested in that, right?

Kat: Yeah, so do you think that that moment is informing this? Like, “Oh, we suspected Malfoy before. Forget about it.”

Michael: I think you could say it is, because yeah, from this point onward, [laughs] she almost never suspects Malfoy, which…

Noah: And remember just last year she punched him in the face.

Michael: Yeah, she’s pretty tired of him.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Noah: There’s some bad blood between them, and I don’t only mean that because of the Mudblood comment.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Right.

Michael: Yeah, no, I think that’s a great point that possibly that one… because that would be very Hermione wouldn’t that it? But if that one lead [weren’t] worth your while don’t bother with it anymore.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: Because that ends up being her failing in Half-Blood, is that she doesn’t even suspect Malfoy of anything.

Kat: Right.

Michael: So…

Kat: And yet, still, people still ship Dramione even though…

Michael: Strawberry? [laughs]

Kat: It’s crazy. I mean, I get it. It would be hot, but it’s not happening.

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Kat: Let’s be clear. Anyway…

Noah: I’ve just decided that.

Kat: Right. Right, right, right. Episode 69 is just… whatever. Okay, so…

Noah: And they did have a crush on Tom when they were children.

Kat: That’s… I mean, how can you not have a crush on Tom?

Michael: Haha, I can. [laughs]

Kat: Meet him in person, and you will completely change your mind.

Michael: That’s probably true.

Kat: No joke.

Michael: But I’m also single and desperate. [laughs]

[Kelsey laughs]

Kat: Join the club, honey.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: No, but I don’t think he’s that attractive in photos expect when he’s perfectly quafffed and styled – then he looks really nice – but in person he’s incredibly beautiful.

Noah: What about on his guitar? Do you listen to feltbeats?

Kat: I have, yeah. Shout-out to Laurie. I don’t know if she’s listening but what up?

[Noah laughs]

Kat: Okay, anyway. So then we move on, and it says that Sirius is sending daily owls now. And I was wondering… do we think that these are actually helping, or are they just adding more stress to the entire situation?

Noah: I’m just…

Kat: And all he’s doing is warning about… “stay in bounds, don’t do anything awful, Voldemort is getting strong again, don’t be an idiot.”

Kelsey: Yeah, it sort of feels like an overprotective mom who calls you all the time if you don’t text her back immediately. She’s like, “Is something wrong? I need to make sure that you’re safe.”

Kat: Don’t talk about my mom like that.

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Noah: My mom’s like that.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Kat: I know. Mine is, too.

Michael: I would think that it would be helping that Harry doesn’t listen. Just as much as Srius is a typical guardian, Harry is typical teenager. It’s astonishing, though. I mean, it’s one thing when your parent is calling you, and they’re saying, “Why aren’t you home, yet?” and then you get home, and you’re like, “Yeah, I was at the library. Where I always am.”

[Kelsey laughs]

Michael: Versus the Dark lord is tring to kill you.

[Kelsey laughs]

Michael: “Oh, godfather. Why are you so worried that the Dark Lord is trying to kill me? It’s not like aynthing crazy has happened to me this year or anything.” And then your best friend…

Noah: Well, keep in mind that Sirius just doesn’t have a lot of people to talk to other than Buckbeak.

Kat: He talks to Dumbledore.

Michael: He messages Dumbledore, so he can get his stress out that way as well.

Kat: Yeah.

Noah: Right. I mean, how much does he talk to Dumbledore before Dumbledore saying, “Oh, I’m sorry. Peace out. I gotta go to the Pensieve.”

Michael: I’m going to go dunk my head in the Pensieve.

Kat: It’s dunking time.

[Michael laughs]

Kelsey: Going to go put this whole conversation right in there so [that] I don’t have to think about it.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Okay, so they’re practicing, practicing, practicing for the third task, and Harry is saying that he’s finally feeling confident about something, which…

Noah: Right.

Kat: Again, snaps for Harry because it’s about damn time.

Michael: Yeah, no, that was nice, wasn’t it?

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: I never realized that before as much as I did now that this is really the first time Harry actually feels full-on confident about anything.

Kat: Right, going into the end of the book, he knows what’s coming. I mean, okay, he doesn’t know what’s coming.

Michael: He thinks he does.

[Kelsey laughs]

Kat: But the third task, at least, he knows what’s coming, so it’s nice.

Michael: Yeah.

Kelsey: Right. I couldn’t help but think that maybe that was something that they strategically did – the people who made the maze – because in the other two tasks they didn’t really tell them anything about them, but in this one, they’re like, “Well, it’s just this maze. All right. Cool. Learn some spells to help you in there,” and they’re like, “Oh, okay, I can do this,” and then once they get in there, they’re like, “Oh, just kidding. It’s way worse than you ever imagined it would be.”

Kat: Exactly.

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Kat: So the morning of the Third Task finally comes, and of course, the Daily Prophet – Hermione gets her daily delivery – and they try [to] hide from Harry that there’s obviously an artcle about him [in] there, but then Draco, opportunist that he is, shouts the headline across the room, asking him if he’s feeling all right or whatever, and so Ron gives Harry the paper, and he reads it, and the title is “Harry Potter, Disturbed and Dangerous,” and basically, it’s Rita Skeeter talking about what happened in the Divination lesson but twenty times worse than what actually happened, implying that he’s crazy and a diva, basically. [laughs]

Noah: So what you’re saying is [that] this scene is a comment on popular culture going nutso in the media about Justin Bieber, Lindsay Lohan, and those kind of characters.

Kat: That’s not what I’m saying.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: I just wanted to make sure you weren’t saying that.

Kat: Yeah, no, definitely not saying that.

Noah: Okay. I might say that.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: But I’m not.

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: Okay.

Kat: Okay. So then after Harry reads the article, they’re talking about how in the heck Rita Skeeter got this story. How did it happen? Hermione says, “You were on the top of the North Tower. There’s no way his voice would have traveled.” And then Harry says this wonderful line: “Well, you’re the one who’s supposed to be researching magical methods of bugging. You tell me how she did it.” And it’s OGM. It’s a good moment. It’s great. I love it. But I was thinking, “Do you guys remember any theories you had about this?” About how Rita was getting these stories? At all? Any clue?

Kelsey: I don’t think that I actually did. I was going to ask you guys if any of you thought…

Michael: No. I never had any theories about the books. I was too stupid.

Kelsey: I was just thinking if anyone actually figured out the real thing at all while reading it or if specifically at this point because I definitely didn’t. I didn’t have any idea.

Kat: Well, you know what’s different about this book that she does in other books? So in other books when the word is a clue, it’s italicized. And that does not happen in Goblet because bugging is mentioned three separate times and none of the three times it’s italicized.

Michael: That’s interesting.

Kat: That’s what I’m thinking because in Order she does it when Draco is talking about the dog – it’s italicized. There’s like 20 references that I could throw out there for you guys, but I just thought that that was interesting that she didn’t do that this time around. That’s all.

Kelsey: In those cases, though, is it dialogue, like the person talking? Because in that case, with Draco, he would be saying… He’s insinuating to Harry that he knows about the dog. But yeah, if they’re italicized for that reason, then it would make a little more sense. But is it…? Do you know of any offhand that are just narrative that she uses the italicized in also?

Kat: I have a list somewhere that I tried finding for this episode…

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: … because I had a feeling somebody would ask me. I have to find it, but there are definitely some that are just not dialogue. So I’d have to find those.

Kelsey: That’s interesting. That seems a little obvious [laughs] for Jo to be doing.

Kat: Yeah, but I think she didn’t do it in this book because this is a main plot.

Kelsey: Right, right, right.

Kat: And in the other books, I remember it being just like… It had nothing to do with the overall arching theme of the book. It was more of the littler stuff. But anyway. So then, of course, Hermione has an epiphany, but about what, we don’t quite know yet. She runs off to the library, as usual.

Michael: I love that she puts her hands through her hair multiple times like she’s feeling Rita’s beetle in her hair. That was nice.

Kat: Oh, is that what she’s doing?

Michael: That why she knew… The thing is, to say “bugging” and for her to just be like, “Oh, of course, she’s a beetle!” [imitates a racing sound] [laughs] I think that’s what happened, was she realized…

Noah: I thought she was checking for eggs.

Michael: [laughs] For eggs? No, I think she was remembering that the beetle was in her hair.

Kat: That’s so… I didn’t even think about that.

Michael: Because I thought it was funny that she runs her hands through her hair multiple times, after she remembers that. Yeah, that’s what it is. She gets it pretty quickly.

Kat: And there’s even a reference where it says that she held her hand up to her mouth as though speaking into an invisible walkie-talkie. So there it is again.

Michael: Yeah, she’s miming the beetle in her hand.

Noah: Of course, Harry and Ron just look on. “Why are you touching your hair? Is it a girl thing? Do you just…? I don’t… Is…?”

Michael: You never ask Hermione questions. You just let her explain.

Kat: Right, you just don’t.

Noah: You just know that she knows what she’s doing.

Michael: She’ll explain later.

Kat: So she runs off to the library, and Ron is like, “Oi! We have…” They have to go to an exam. Of course, Harry is exempt from exams. Again. And I laugh because, how does this kid keep advancing to the next year? Because he never takes exams. Ever. The only year… He’s in his fourth year. He has sat exams once, and that was in his third year.

Noah: He is Harry Potter.

Michael: Yeah.

Noah: He’s got Dumbledore’s stamp of approval for all seven years.

Kat: That doesn’t matter!

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Son, you’ve got to pass your exams.

Michael: I don’t know, he got the Head Auror position without any credentials other than killing Voldemort, and he did that with a really basic spell.

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Kat: Well, well, well, well, well. There’s a whole other set of circumstances that led to him actually being able to do that, but…

Michael: Yes.

Noah: Hey, they say he could produce a corporeal Patronus when he was 13. Did you hear?

[Michael laughs]

Noah: It was a full blown one too.

Michael: That overrides any needs for any other kind of training as an Auror.

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Kat: Fine, I guess so.

Michael: No, no, I think it’s a good point, though. Because it is weird that Harry is exempt from this expectation. [laughs]

Kat: Right! Well, because then… He does take exams in Order, obviously, because he takes his OWLs. But in Half-Blood, no exams. And then he skips his seventh year.

Michael: Yeah.

Kelsey: So he doesn’t do his NEWTs or anything?

Kat: No. Hermione is the only one [who] goes back to Hogwarts to finish their seventh year.

Michael: Yeah, Ron at least has… [laughs] Ron actually has more exams under his belt than Harry.

Kat: Right, and Hermione since Hermione was… Oh no, they canceled them in the Chamber year, so…

Michael: Which she was very upset about.

Kat: Yes, she was.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: Anyway, so right before they’re about to head off to their exam, McGonagall comes over and says, “Oh, the families are here to see everybody.” And…

Noah: “I have no family, McGonagall. Why did you tell me this?” says Harry.

Kat: Ron is like, “Does she actually expect the Dursleys to turn up?” And Harry is saying to himself, he has no family. No family who would turn up to see him risk his life, anyway. And I kind of chuckled because isn’t that kind of exactly why the Dursleys would show up? I mean, that’s just what I thought anyway.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: But much to Harry’s surprise, he walks into the room, and Molly and Bill are there. Which is very sweet, and I think that… I love that Dumbledore – I’m assuming it’s Dumbledore – asked them to go.

Noah: I believe so.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Michael: Well, yeah, because…

Kat: It’s a very touching moment.

Michael: … going along with your thought, if Dumbledore had written to the Dursleys and told them exactly what was going to go down, they probably would have showed up.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: Right, that’s what I thought. “Oh, there’s a chance [that] Harry is going to die. Come support him.” They’d be like, “Let’s go spit on his grave.”

[Kat and Kelsey laugh]

Michael: Petunia should have taken it. It was her one opportunity to finally get to Hogwarts.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat and Kelsey: Oh, burn!

Noah: Dumbledore could wave the hat, “I could even Sort you! It’s never too late.”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: “I can Sort you! I can Sort you! No, I can’t! You can’t ask!”

Kelsey: “Just for fun!”

Noah: “It’s way too soon! That’s what we say here at Hogwarts.”

Kat: It’s like the Petunia tease. Dumbledore is just like…

Michael: I do think that’s very sweet that Molly and Bill came. That is one thing I do remember from my original reading, is I had no idea who was going to be in the antechamber waiting for Harry because I was so… as a kid, I was always so completely drawn into the experience just in the same way… just reading it from Harry’s perspective that I just didn’t really have any foresight when I was reading. So that was just as much as a pleasant surprise as a reader for me.

Noah: Yeah. Me too.

Kat: Yeah. And I like that it’s Bill because we don’t get to spend a lot of time with Bill, so it’s kind of nice that he’s there.

Michael: Yeah, yeah. No, it’s a nice intro… a little more of a thorough introduction to Bill. We get a little more of him, so…

Noah: Bill is really cool.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: And we get his budding first look at Fleur.

Kat: Right, I know. Yeah. Amidst her…

Kelsey: Or rather, her first look at him.

Michael: Yeah. [laughs]

Kat: Amidst their little history lesson with Molly and Bill talking about their time at Hogwarts, which I thought was really cute, how she was like, “Oh, your father and I had been out for a nighttime stroll.”

Michael: Yeah, that was… and this is another one of those moments that I love about Rowling’s writing, is that she doesn’t have to do this.

Kat: Right.

Michael: This is not required material.

Kat: Right.

Michael: But this so completes the world. We’re hearing about the original caretaker and the original groundskeeper…

Noah: It’s like it’s real.

Michael: People whose names she shouldn’t even really know but she does.

Kat: Right.

Michael: So it’s really cool to get those pieces dropped in like that.

Kat: Wait. Snaps for Jo.

[Everyone snaps]

Michael: Snaps for Jo. [laughs]

Kat: Okay, so then Harry… they’re talking about the family or whatever, and Harry asks how Percy is, of all people, which I thought was slightly odd. But I mean, how else is she going to bring it up, I guess. And Bill mentions that he’s not good, and then Molly says that he’s being interrogated about everything that’s happening with Crouch and his disappearance and how they think that the instructions aren’t really coming from him. And I think we’ve kind of touched on this before, but I thought about it a lot more in this moment: Do we think… okay, so Percy claims that he would know if the instructions were coming from his boss, but do we think that maybe… even if he suspected a little bit, that he would continue to let them come?

Kelsey: Yeah, that kind of seems like something Percy would do.

Noah: Yes.

Michael: Yeah.

Kelsey: Off to rock the boat.

Kat: Because he wants a little bit of the power for himself. You know what I mean?

Noah: Yeah. Totally agree.

Michael: I agree too. I think Percy would be… just because that would put… I think he would think of all the awkward positions that would put him in and the hindrance to his career.

Kat: Yeah, yeah.

Michael: If he were to… and he’s so… and this… I brought this up before, and I know the listeners got a little touchy about it on the forums, which was interesting. I was real[ly] interested in the reactions I saw. But that… I compared… and not completely, but I did compare Percy to Umbridge and her complete loyalty to Fudge, her unwavering loyalty to Fudge. And that’s kind of what I was… that’s what my intention was when I compared Percy to her, because Percy’s devotion to Crouch is completely unwavering. [laughs]

Kat: Right.

Noah: It’s really a connection.

Kat: Then there’s a nice little Easter egg here. Ron gets out of his exam and finds everybody in the Great Hall eating lunch and he’s like, “Oh, I couldn’t remember all the goblin rebels’ names.” He’s like, “They’re all called stuff like ‘Bogrog the Beard’ and…”

Michael: Urg the Unclean.

Kat: Right. And isn’t Bogrog one of the goblins in Deathly Hallows?

Kelsey: Hmm.

Kat: It is, for the record.

Michael: Yeah, the one that leads them down… who they curse, right?

Kelsey: Oh.

Kat: Mhm. Yeah. I don’t know if that’s book, but it’s definitely movie canon, so…

Michael: Well, Urg is also canon. He’s on a wizard card, so…

Kat: Oh, yeah. Exactly. There you go.

Michael: So Ron wasn’t making names… Ron passed his test. [laughs]

Kat: Right.

Noah: Guys, I had another thought about this scene. When Ron first sees Molly and Bill, his first statement is “Oh, right.” And I got the sense from him that… is he possibly… I know that sometimes he’s jealous of Harry and thinks that… in some ways he thinks that Harry is his mother’s favorite son, and I got a wave of that as soon as they showed up because this is a surprise for Ron too. So do you think that he was feeling a little put off slightly in this moment, even though Harry doesn’t have a family?

Kat: I didn’t get that vibe.

Kelsey: No, me neither.

Michael: I do think it’s funny that Ron doesn’t have a stronger reaction to his family showing up. [laughs]

Kelsey: Right.

Kat: Yeah. He looks stunned, but it doesn’t say that he’s taken aback.

Michael: No.

Kat: He just looks stunned and, I think, happily surprised that they’re there, you know?

Michael: Yeah.

Kelsey: Yeah. Knowing Ron, though, I would have assumed that he would think that he was in trouble automatically because last time that Molly interfered, so to speak, at school with sending him a Howler. [laughs] I think it probably would have made a little more sense if he was like, “Whoa, why are you here? What did I do?”

Noah: Yeah.

[Michael laughs]

Noah: I just think that it’s possible that when it dawns on him that she’s there for Harry and not for him specifically, it’s… that could potentially do something. I mean, he does harbor at least a little of this resentment all the way through the books, hence the Horcrux affects him so.

Kelsey: Well, but I mean, then Ron isn’t really doing anything this year. [laughs] It’s like Harry is in the tournament, so…

Noah: That’s true.

Kat: Right. Plus there’s no indication at all in the text that he feels jealous in this moment.

Michael: I think it…

Noah: It’s an ellipsis. I read deeply into this ellipsis between words.

Michael: I think it could be something that maybe would affect perhaps… Ron could potentially have used this example for fuel in the future.

Noah: Mhm.

Michael: But I don’t think he’s upset in the moment. I think Ron is kind of passed that since he had his big blow-up earlier.

Kat: Yeah. And he knows that Harry has no family, so…

Michael: Yeah. I think he’s…

Kat: I’m pretty sure he’s happy to let him borrow his own.

Michael: Yeah. Yeah.

Kat: So it’s fine. So then of course we get this cute little moment where Hermione and Mrs. Weasley see each other and Molly is all stern and mean…

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: …and Harry is like, “Hey, listen. Don’t believe that crap that Rita Skeeter wrote because Hermione is not my girlfriend!”

[Noah laughs]

Kat: And Molly is like, “Oh, oh, of course!” and is instantly nicer to her and I just thought it was really funny that we’re at this chapter this week with all this Harry-Hermione-Ron BS that’s going on.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Michael: It is pretty fitting.

Kat: We are not going to talk about that.

[Noah laughs]

Michael: No, what I like about this is that it introduces a bit of moral grayness into a major character like Molly…

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: …and I know we discussed this previously, but it’s funny because just not two pages before she’s admonishing Amos Diggory…

Kat: Right.

Michael: … for taking Rita’s word as law.

Kat and Noah: Right.

Kat: Exactly.

[Michael laughs]

Kelsey: Right, right.

Michael: So it’s funny to see that completely turned on her.

Kat: Took the words out of my mouth, Michael. Good job.

Kelsey: Oh, yeah. I’m looking for the quote in here because I was thinking of that too and she says to Amos Diggory, she goes, “Rita Skeeter goes out of her way to cause trouble, Amos! I would’ve thought you’d known that working at the Ministry.” So she’s like kind of… she snaps at him. [laughs] She’s like, “You shouldn’t listen to that woman,” then immediately is just…

Kat: Boom. Yeah. It’s hard, I guess. The ways of the heart, right?

Kelsey: Ah, yes.

Kat: I don’t know. Okay, so then they say, “Ladies and gentlemen, in five minutes we’re going to be making the way down to the Quidditch field for the Third and final Task of the Triwizard Tournament.” And…

Michael: Oh my God. It’s so exciting.

Kat: I know, it’s really exciting.

Michael: I’ve got my Hogwarts flag ready. Let’s go down to the Tournament, you guys. Oh my God.

Kat: Woo-hoo!

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Kat: [singing “Hogwarts’ March”] Sorry, I was singing the Tournament’s…

Michael: No, yeah. [laughs]

[Kat and Noah sing “Hogwarts’ March”]

Kat: That’s one of my favorite bits of score from this film. I really love that. But anyway.

Noah: Yet there’s no music class at Hogwarts.

Kat: So Dumbledore tells the champions to go with Mr. Bagman and Harry is like, “Yeah, you know what? I feel good.” He can remember all the spells in his head. He’s super excited about that.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: But there is literally no pomp and circumstance before this event starts. They get down there. McGonagall is like, “Yep, we’re going to be patrolling outside the maze in case you get in trouble.” And Bagman says, “Oh, here it is! It’s going to start!” He tells what rankings everybody is in and then they’re like, “Boom! [claps] Go!” And they’re off!

Noah: Yeah, this was a little bit… it felt really fast.

Kat: Right, it’s just thrown right in.

Michael: Yeah, I think this is why that feels that way more than any other reread.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: Especially because in the movie, that scene where Bagman takes them out to the – earlier in the week – to see the maze…

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: … that’s meshed with the beginning of the Tournament in the movie and is given to Dumbledore.

Kat: Mhm. Right.

Michael: So there’s a lot more hoopla in the movie.

Kat: And it’s funny you mention that because I think a part that’s in the movie I’m actually severely missing in this part of the book and that’s where Moody is mentioned to have put the Cup in the middle of the maze because that’s mentioned in the film…

Michael: Hmm.

Kat: … and I’m wishing that that was here in the book because that might’ve been a nice clue for the readers.

Kelsey: Oh, yeah.

Michael: Mhm.

Noah: But maybe she wanted even more of a surprise.

Kat: I mean, of course she did, but you wouldn’t have suspected it. Nobody… personally, if that was in there, I wouldn’t have remembered that he was the one who put that in the middle of the maze.

Michael: Yeah, I think… I’m wondering if it might’ve been… as a reader, I’m with Noah that I think it might have been too overt.

Kat: It might have been.

Michael: Yeah, but…

Kat: I’m still missing it. I still wish it was there.

Michael: Yeah, no…

Noah: She worked so hard in the beginning of the chapter to catch us off guard with other characters, so…

Michael: Yeah, she does a… because Moody’s mentioned at least to be one of the patrollers, right?

Kat: He is mentioned, yes.

Michael: Yeah. So that’s where that parallel comes in because I guess really that’s the only way that this could be messed up because is that the people who have direct contact with the maze are the only people who could actually affect it, so…

Kat: Right. That’s true. True, true, true.

Noah: I just thought the whole thing was really fast. I would’ve just liked one child stands up in the stands, “Potter stinks!” or something like that definitely…

[Michael laughs]

Noah: … in the moment, but there was none.

Kat: There was none.

Noah: They tried wrecking those.

Kelsey: Or maybe for them to explain these rules a little more. That’s what struck me about the introduction part…

Kat: Yeah.

Kelsey: … because McGonagall is like, “All right, we’re going to be patrolling around the outside. All right, that sounds safe. All right, just send up red sparks if you’re in trouble.” “Wait, what? Wait a minute.”

[Noah laughs]

Kelsey: “Can you not see us in there? Is that what you’re saying?” [laughs]

Kat: Right.

Kelsey: And I’m just like, “Wait a second.” [laughs] So what happens if – as with what ends up happening with Krum – you’re unconscious and you can’t put up the red sparks? Do you just get eaten by a Skrewt then?

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: Whoa!

Kelsey: Because that’s what they were saying!

Michael: No.

Kelsey: And they’re like, “Eh, if we leave him here he might get eaten.” [laughs]

Michael: This is the same safety precaution that I had concerns with with the First Task where they’re like, “Oh, we have mediwizards on hand,” and I’m like, “Yeah, that doesn’t do you much good if you’re in the dragon’s mouth.” [laughs] Too late!

Kat: Right, right!

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: It… there doesn’t seem to be a full-on account for… wizards just really don’t have a good sense of safety. [laughs]

Kelsey: Right.

Kat: No, they really, truly don’t.

Kelsey: And there’s no way for them to monitor what spells they’re using, either. That’s the other thing. No one realizes that Krum is using an illegal curse and you’d think that maybe that would’ve been a concern. “What if one of them attacks the other?” “Oh, they’re not going to do that.” “Well, why not?” “Because I just don’t think they will.” “All right, good. That’s good enough for me.” [laughs]

Noah: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah, no, it’s all on assumption rather than… and it… but really it ends up being pretty extremely unbridled. [laughs]

Kelsey: Right. [laughs]

Kat: Right. But actually, just minutes before – well, minutes in the book, I suppose, before we get to the whole Krum bit – Cedric and Harry go in there and then Viktor close behind and then Fleur. And I thought it was funny that we get a mention of really one of the only non-Latin spells in the entire series, which is the Point Me spell.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: And all Harry says is, “Point Me,” which I thought… I was like, “You couldn’t come up with something better for that?”

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]


Kat: Right, something! Right, anything, anything.

Kelsey: [laughs] Anything besides “Point Me.”

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Pointus, even!

[Kelsey laughs]

Kat: Anything. Anyway, I just thought it was funny.

Noah: Maybe she wrote this whole last part of the book in a mad rush. “Get to the graveyard! Get to the graveyard!” [laughs]

Kat: I mean, she has said – and we’ve talked about this many times – that she feels like this is the most rushed book of the series.

Michael: I always…

Kat: I think there was a lot of pressure on her to get the novel out.

Michael: I always think when she does things like that that are so blunt, I always just assume it’s for humor’s purpose.

Kelsey: Right.

Kat: Maybe.

Michael: Because…

Noah: I didn’t laugh.

Michael: That’s… [laughs] Not funny! Not funny enough! But…

Kat: Right.

Michael: I think it’s cool that there’s a spell that can turn your wand into a compass. That’s pretty awesome.

Kat: Yeah, that’s pretty dope.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Michael: Very useful.

Kat: I couldn’t… I have no sense of directions. So if I was a wizard, I would use that all the time. All the time. So then, of course, Harry keeps saying that he’s walking and he’s not running into anything, absolutely anything and I didn’t really think anything about this the first time. Obviously, I thought a lot about it this time because we know it’s Moody, but at the time we didn’t know.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: Anyway, he finally comes upon a Dementor, which actually ended up being a Boggart and is this an oops here? Because the Boggart explodes instead of changing into something because laughter is supposed to explode a Boggart, right?

Noah: Right!

Michael: Hmm.

Kat: So maybe this is like some special Boggart or it’s an oops. I don’t know. It’s not super important.

Kelsey: Maybe. I did like the detail that the Boggart tripped instead of floating, like it’s…

Kat: Yeah, how it stumbled.

Michael: Yeah, it has…

Kelsey: The little detail about how the Boggart is like, “All right, I think that this is how this is.” There’s more about how it just looks like what it is rather than being what it is.

Kat: Right.

Noah: Right, I was wondering about that. It’s just the Boggart’s approximation of the vision inside Harry’s fear center.

Michael: Yeah, no. I thought it was interesting just because that, more than Prisoner of Azkaban, revealed where Boggarts come up against walls when they’re trying to make something.

Kelsey and Noah: Yeah.

Michael: So there are… we knew there were limitations, but this gives us a definitive example of that. So…

Kat: Right, exactly.

Michael: But…

Noah: But the miracle burst thing, that goes without exception. I don’t really know why unless he thinks it’d be funny for it to burst and…

Michael: I’d say it’s an oops, but it’s an aesthetic oops.

Noah: Yeah.

Kat: Right, exactly!

Michael: So… and there was…

Kat: It doesn’t really bother me.

Michael: Because there was… unless… because I think for Harry to outright laugh at anything at that point would have been inappropriate tonally, so…

Kat: Right.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Michael: And there wasn’t anywhere for the Boggart to go. Harry had to get it out of his way.

Kat: Well and it would have turned into a Dementor anyway.

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: So I don’t know. Anyway, so Harry moves on and he comes across a[n] “odd golden mist” and I just remember being like, “What in the heck is this?”

Michael and Noah: Yes!

Kat: So Harry steps into it…

[Michael laughs]

Kat: … as he’s trying to step through it and of course, his whole world turns upside down. It says that, “He’s hanging from the ground with his hair on the end, his glasses dangling off his nose threatening to fall into the bottomless sky.” And I just remember thinking to myself, I would be pooping my pants…

[Michael laughs]

Kat: … with nervousness because one, I am terrified of heights. You put me upside down and I think I would have passed out. This would have taken me out of the tournament. I would have been done.

Noah: Heh.

Kelsey: Oh, yeah.

Michael: This has to be…

Noah: Perhaps the golden mist is a metaphor because his life is about to turn upside down.

Michael: Ooh!

Kelsey: Oh, man!

Kat: Well that was my next question, if this was some sort of commentary from Jo?

Michael: Oh! Oh my gosh!

Kat: About trusting your instincts and things of that nature?

Michael: Ooh, isn’t that interesting?

Kelsey: Yeah because it turns out it’s really, I think, it’s one of the more scary things that he encounters in the maze…

Kat: Oh, absolutely terrifying!

Kelsey: Yeah, but it’s the easiest to get out of. All you have to do is take a step, but you have to have the courage to actually do it.

Kat: Right.

Noah: Yeah.

Michael: That is so interesting because I have… this has been, possibly, one of the most mind – I will not hesitate to say – this is one of the most mind boggling moments in the entire series for me because I have never understood how this magic can even be possible. You’re literally changing Harry’s…

Noah: Orientation.

Michael: … perception of gravity and reality.

Noah: Yeah.

Kat: Right! And everything is hanging off him, yet he’s stuck to the ground.

Michael: Yeah, well and he’s… because yeah, he almost… he feels like his glasses almost fall off his face and I’m…

Kat: Right.

Noah: He really…

Michael: But they’re not even…

Noah: He really should have read Ender’s Game because then he’d know that the enemy’s door is down. Anybody?

Kelsey: No. [laughs]

Michael: I never finished Ender’s Game. [laughs]

Noah: Oh. Sorry, carry on, Michael.

Michael: Aww, somewhere a listener is laughing, right?

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Kat: Yeah, the lonely listener.

Michael: No, there’s a lot of people who’ve read Ender’s Game. [laughs]

Kat: Maybe.

Noah: Hee, hee, hee, hee!

Michael: But…

Noah: You… yes! You!

Kat: Hopefully, they didn’t just see the movie. Apparently, it was really bad.

Michael: I’m hoping that they… I would love to get some explanation on this thing because this is just unlike any magic we ever see before or after.

Kat: Right. I completely agree. It’s one of my…

Kelsey: Right.

Kat: … favorite bits in the entire maze.

Michael: I love it!

Kelsey: It’s actually similar to…

Michael: Go ahead, Kelsey! What were you saying?

Kelsey: Although, it is similar to what we talking about the Pensieve and how you get out of it. It’s seems like a similar type of magic would be involved because it just moves you, moves your whole body. Well, that and if, in fact, you go into the Pensieve, your whole body can float back out of it. It seems like you would be a similar thing.

Michael: What’s weird to me about it is that, okay, so we’re saying that Harry’s… to… in Harry’s… for Harry, he is literally upside down because like you said, in the book, it describes his glasses as almost falling off. He has to hold them up or they will fall off.

Kelsey: Mhm.

Michael: Is the audience actually seeing a pair of glasses rising out of the hedges? If he had let them go, is that what they would have seen?

Kat: Oh, that’s so weird! I don’t know if… this is like a mind…

Michael: [laughs] His glasses would have just kept going?

Noah: Harry would have just fallen upwards into the sky and floated away?

Kelsey: Well, then it would have at least been something for them to see, the audience.

[Michael and Noah laugh]

Kat: But I was actually going to comment on that earlier and I decided not to. So I was trying to get a better visual of how this maze works.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: I think that because the Quidditch stands are so high up…

Michael: Yeah, it’s…

Kat: … and the maze is low, it’s not low enough you could see over, but I think it’s low enough that the viewers would be able to see down for parts of it.

Kelsey: Oh, that makes sense.

Michael: Yeah, that’s… I think that comes from the movie since it’s set in the grounds versus the book.

Kat: Right.

Michael: Yeah, it’s in the Quidditch stadium.

Kat: Okay, but anyway. So moving on, Harry, after he finally gets the courage to step through the mist and is like, “Peace out! I’m leaving that mess behind me!”

[Michael laughs]

Kat: “Bye, bye!” I do not blame him for that at all. He hears Krum pull Crucio on Cedric, which I was like, “Oh my God! What the eff is going on? This maze is redonkulous!”

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: And it made me laugh because – not like laugh-laugh, but…

Noah: Laugh when Cedric is getting tortured just before he’s about to die, Kat?

Kat: No.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Kat: Of course you read into my words incorrectly. No, it made me laugh about the fact that here’s Harry being dense again. He didn’t run into anything for ten minutes. Krum is Crucio-ing Cedric and he still doesn’t really think anything is going on. I don’t know. At this point in the book, I was like, “All right, something weird is happening.” I was picking up on it.

Kelsey: Yeah, their reaction to Krum doing this, both of them once they stopped him, I just, that struck me as a little weird. Him and Cedric, they both seem to react more like, “Oh, what a jerk!” rather than…

Kat: Right!

Kelsey: … “That was a capital offense! He could go to prison for life for that! What? That doesn’t make any sense that he would do that.”

Kat: Right. Even when Harry’s like, “Well, we should probably move him so he’s not eaten by the Skrewt,” like it mentioned before and Cedric’s like, “Well he would deserve it,” I was like, “Wow!”

Kelsey: But it… oh… what!

Michael: I’m torn on this because I feel that way now, retrospectively, but I remember on my first read just being totally confused because the way that Jo builds Krum up, we don’t really get a cemented character from him throughout the book. He’s placed into potential suspect at certain points…

Noah: Yeah.

Michael: … just because of his proximity to things, which is unfortunate.

Noah: And Karkaroff.

Kelsey and Michael: Yes.

Michael: And his relation to Karkaroff, so…

Kelsey: And that he’s really quiet, he slouches everywhere.

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: I just never got that vibe from him even the first time because, I mean, I was older when I read the books.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: So I think that that whole… he didn’t throw me off. She didn’t throw me off his scent.

Michael: She did for me.

Kat: Did I say that right?

Michael: She didn’t throw you, yeah.

Kat: I never suspected Krum is what I was trying to say.

Michael: There we go.

Kat: But anyway…

[Michael laughs]

Kat: So after he and Cedric deal with Krum and shoot the red sparks [makes shooting sound] – that was my Jedi noise.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Kat: Harry rounds a couple of other corners and runs into a sphinx, which I was so excited about it. I thought it was super, super cool. So I figured we would go into a ridiculously brief history of a sphinx.

Michael: Yay!

Kelsey: Woo-hoo!

[Noah laughs]

Kat: Yeah, not to the depth that Michael would normally do it.

Michael and Noah: Oh!

Kat: I did not pull out my Fantastic Beasts.

[Noah laughs]

Michael: I’m holding my copy right now!

Kat: Of course you are! Okay, but…

Michael: You go first.

Kat: The bit that I found on wiki that I thought was really super cool.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: So I’m going to read it. It says that, “She” – so the sphinx is usually just as described in the novel here. It’s a body of lion with the head of a woman. So it says, “She is mythicized as traitorous and merciless. Those who can not answer her riddle suffer a fate typical in those mythological stories as they are killed and eaten by this ravenous monster. This deadly version of a sphinx appears in the myth and drama of Oedipus.” And this is probably the sixth or seventh time we’ve talked about Oedipus on this podcast, so I’m not going to go back into it. If you don’t know what it is, look it up. It is incredibly…

Noah: It’s all about lady’s love, isn’t it?

Kat: It is incredibly relevant to Harry’s story and a lot of the theories that were floating around before Book 7 came out. So I encourage everybody to look up Oedipus and read about it because I think you will be happily surprised by what you read. So, Michael, what do you have about the sphinx?

Michael: Well, it says here in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander, the sphinx is classified by the Ministry of Magic as Quadruple X rating, which means it’s very dangerous. Don’t go messing around with those things.

Kat: That’s one X more than Vin Diesel.

Michael: [laughs] So you can see how dangerous it is!

[Kat laughs]

Michael: The Egyptian sphinx has a human head on a lion’s body not specified to be a woman’s in Rowling’s canon and in Book of Spells, there is a male sphinx that appears. “For over a thousand years, it has been used by witches and wizards to guard valuables and secret hideaways. Highly intelligent, the sphinx delights in puzzles and riddles. It is usually dangerous only when what it is guarding is threatened.” And that’s all she had on the sphinx.

Kat: Okay. Yeah, in the book it does specifically say that it’s the head of a woman.

Michael: Mhm. Yeah, the one that we meet, so…

Kat: Yeah.

Kelsey: Mhm.

Noah: Wait, so I have a thought there, then, that I think is probably appropriate. So you have…

Kat: We’ll be the judge of that.

[Michael laughs]

Noah: So the mythical creature, she is clearly female and she is guarding a door or a space and tells Harry, “I will let you through if you answer my question or not, if you answer incorrectly, I will kill you or attack you.” So is there this almost…

Kat: No.

Noah: … metaphorically sexual situation going on?

Kat: Nope.

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: But you see what I mean because she’s like…

Michael: I can’t comment on that because I have no idea, but I’m sure the listeners could come up with something.

Noah: Well, I would just say that she’s a… the sphinx is a representation of some kind of female – of femininity of some kind.

Michael: Oh yeah! No, the one that’s… she’s… I mean, why have it be a human female head if there isn’t something to that?

Noah: Right.

Michael: So…

Kat: Because they’re most notably female. Sphinxes in history are most notably female.

Michael: Well, yeah, that’s it, too. If that’s a historical myth, then perhaps that’s the basis in that.

Kelsey: I didn’t think of that.

Kat: Because there’s a counterpart to the sphinx – I forget what it’s called now – that is the male that has a different name.

Michael: Hmm…

Noah: Right. And this one in particular…

Kelsey: And also, kind of…

Kat: Kelsey, go ahead.

Kelsey: It would also make sense that she’s a woman in this scenario, because once you find out what happens after he gets past the sphinx… she was made to have him have a false sense of security. And also, what’s interesting – I didn’t have Fantastic Beasts, so I didn’t actually realize that this was a fact – but when I looked up sphinxes I also looked them up on Wikipedia, and it specifies that there are two main types and one of them is Greek and the other one is Egyptian. I figured the one here must be Egyptian because the Greek one is described as primarily treacherous and the Egyptian one is described as benevolent, and she seems to be primarily benevolent, particularly because if Harry doesn’t answer the question, he’s allowed to leave. I feel like if she wasn’t…

Michael: Right.

Kelsey: She could also just chase you down and you’d have to also defend yourself against her in that case if she weren’t more of a good being meant to… I don’t really know. [laughs]

Michael: No, no, that’s a great… I think that’s a great thought because it’s interesting how I feel as a reader – your feelings towards her oscillate. You’re very wary of her but you kind of like her by the end of her segment.

Noah: Because she lets Harry repeat…

Michael: Yeah.

Noah: She repeats for Harry so many times.

Kat: And because she’s smiling her mysterious smile.

Michael: Yeah, she gives him… she makes it pretty easy. The funny thing is the riddle’s not that hard. [laughs]

Kat: Yeah, that was my next point. Harry’s all worried, he’s like, “Oh man, where’s Hermione when I need her? I suck at these.” And he figures it out in seemingly five minutes.

Noah: The thought – the connection to Hermione – he instantly thinks of Hermione as the “riddle breaker.” What is this? We now have two female characters, Hermione and the Sphinx, being connected to riddle breakers. So, is there some kind of dialogue about femininity and riddles and higher-level thought that she is giving?

Michael: Hmm…

Kelsey: Maybe, because Luna also – in the last book when she solves the riddle to get into Ravenclaw Tower – shows that she’s capable of higher thought than Harry is at least.

[Noah’s dog barks in background]

Noah: Sorry, Sirius is here. Hey Sirius.

[Kelsey laughs]

Michael: That’s really interesting because there are a lot of riddles in the series that are connected to females, aren’t there?

Kat: Yeah, because Hermione does the potions, which is a riddle.

Michael: Yeah. I do love the sphinx moment. It’s almost like I’m wondering, too, if the sphinx – because she’s not particularly guarding anything of value to her – perhaps that’s why the riddle is so easy.

Kat: Yeah, it could be.

Kelsey: But also… it’s interesting that you bring up how easy the riddle is because that was something that I had when I was rereading the chapter. I wrote down specifically, “Oh, that was kind of easy.” But when I got to the next part, I immediately crossed it out and wrote, “Never mind!” [laughs] It was supposed to be easy to make you not expect what was coming next. It was a clue but it was also supposed to make you not think that.

Noah: I couldn’t get it.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: I suck at riddles, so I definitely didn’t figure it out the first time.

Michael: The other thing is – the answer to the riddle – she gave him a hint of what’s up ahead on the path.

Kelsey: Right, that’s right.

Noah: And the spy.

Kat: The spider comes from the other path that Cedric is on.

Michael: Yeah, but it’s in the area.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Kat: But I think that if Cedric hadn’t gone that way, they would have never encountered the spider. I don’t think it was… because she’s saying that this is the easiest way to get to the Cup. So if Harry hadn’t gone that way, he would have had to go past the spider.

Noah: But guys, it’s a double clue because she’s reminding… she’s telling him about the spy as well. Somebody lying.

Michael: Hmm…

Kelsey: Maybe it’s her. Maybe it’s her that’s lying because she said that it’s the safest route and the spider is in fact there.

[Michael laughs]

Noah: Oho!

Kelsey: I think the spider being the answer to the riddle was a little bit too big of a coincidence for it not to have been a trick on her part.

Kat: Okay. I disagree with that, but I think that some people out there… I’m sure there are people who agree with you. So I’m not going to say that you’re crazy.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: So, speaking of that moment with the spider, when Cedric and Harry finally get to the middle of the maze, they take out the spider together and it’s this big triumphant moment. They talk about who’s going to take the Cup. Harry’s like, “Take the Cup, you’re here.” And Cedric’s like, “No way, I’m not going to take it.” And Harry’s like, “No, you take it!” “No, you take it!” “No, you take it!”

[Noah laughs]

Kat: And they just go back and forth for way too long, way too long, because they’re indecisive boys… I don’t know what the problem is. And finally, Harry’s like, “Let’s just take it together. It’s still a Hogwarts victory. Let’s just do it.” Okay. So they take it together and they get sucked off by the Portkey. But my question – and I really want to talk about this – is how would this have affected the series if Harry had been like, “I’m not taking it, I’m not touching it,” and Cedric was just like, “Fine, I’m just going to take the stupid thing and end the Task.” How would that have affected the series?

Noah: Voldemort would have thought that was Harry.

Kat: No, I don’t think he would have.

Noah: [in a Voldemort voice] “Harry, you’re taller and blonder.”

Kat: Noah, seriously…

Noah: Oh. Sorry. I think the same conclusion…

Kelsey: He just would have had to come up with another plan.

Michael: It would have affected Voldemort severely. It would have affected Harry in the same way because eventually I’m sure they would have found out what happened to Cedric, or at least found out that he’d been killed, and so Harry would have had that horrendous guilt. He wouldn’t have seen Cedric die, so he wouldn’t be able to see the Thestrals.

Kat: Also, Voldemort wouldn’t have Harry’s blood.

Michael: Yes. That’s why I said Voldemort is more severely affected in this case because his plans are all for naught.

Noah: So in some way, Cedric Diggory is responsible for Voldemort coming back to power.

Kat: What?

Noah: Because he…

Kelsey: Well, he didn’t insist that they both go, Harry did.

Noah: Right, sorry. So Harry is responsible.

Michael: Yeah. Well, that’s why Harry is so guilt-ridden. The sad thing is the only real way that this could have “ideally” worked out is if Cedric hadn’t gone with him. But the thing is Harry would never do that. Then you’d just be disappointed in Harry for taking the Cup and being selfish.

Kelsey: Yeah.

Michael: And there would be other implications that would take Harry’s character down a different morality route.

Kat: But personally, I don’t know if that’s true. If Harry had just taken the Cup, Cedric wouldn’t have died. So would we…?

Kelsey: Well, he would never have known that he was in danger of dying.

Kat: Sure we would, because we would know what happens to Harry. And if Cedric had gone with him, we would know that he probably would have been killed.

Kelsey: Oh, that’s true.

Kat: So, I mean, does it…?

Michael: Yeah, because we get… Rowling clearly in the moment shows in her narration that if Harry were to take the Cup, it would be for really horrible, selfish, trite reasons. Because she cites the reason that Harry is mad at Cedric for getting there first is because he got to the Cup first like he got to Cho first. And that’s really…

Kat: But does that matter in the end? If Harry had taken it and Cedric didn’t die, does that matter in the end?

Michael: I think it does for Harry’s character, because I think that’s really telling about who Harry is as a person. I think that would be a betrayal of the Harry that she’s written up to this point. Harry would never take anything for himself like that – he never does. That would just… I wouldn’t expect… I remember as a kid even reading it and not expecting Harry to take the Cup by himself.

Kelsey: Yeah, especially since Cedric gives such good reasons like why either one… [laughs]

Michael: Yeah. I’m not… it would be great if the situation were that Cedric didn’t die. And it’s a weird situation because I’m not saying that Harry should be selfish so that Cedric can live.

Kat: See… yeah.

Michael: Yeah. It’s not quite that clean-cut.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: It’s also dependent on the fact that the characters are lacking knowledge that we as readers have.

Kat: Right.

Michael: So, it’s not really fair to put that on them.

Kat: And also, the thing that I like about this moment is that – so they take the Cup together, they go, and Cedric dies – Harry then is the person he is in Order of the Phoenix almost totally because of this moment.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: And I love it. I just love it. I’m sorry – R.I.P. Cedric Diggory – but I love it.

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: I don’t love that he died, I love the reasons…

Noah: Percy Kat.

Kat: … and all of that.

Michael: Yeah. And I think Dumbledore really helps clarify that for Harry – to just make clear to him that it wasn’t the wrong decision. Because Harry could not possibly have known what was coming.

Kat: Right. Exactly.

Kelsey: Right.

Michael: And Harry leaves this whole thing horribly scathed, but his character is all the more for it, I think.

Kat: Right. No, I agree, and again, Order of the Phoenix, I’m going to defend the crap out of that guy.

[Michael laughs]

Kelsey: I think it also helps it in so far as what he becomes in Order of the Phoenix, like him immediately realizing the implications. That’s probably another reason why he’s so adament, adament, adament – especially at the beginning – about finding stuff, because he’s going to do this again. And it’s very different knowing what killing someone means, having seen it rather than just heard about it.

Kat: Right, exactly. I completely agree.

Michael: Mhm.

Kat: So, it’s good. And that’s why I love this chapter so much. It’s a great chapter. It’s a good one.

Noah: Yep, and it leads nicely into my Question of the Week. Because something you really didn’t touch on, Kat, was that several moments throughout the maze specifically, Harry has these weird thoughts of winning the prize – winning the trophy, or the Triwizard Cup rather. And it’s kind of awkward because right after he hears Fleur’s scream, he immediately feels bad but then he thinks, “One contestant down.”

[Michael laughs]

Noah: And this actually… he has these thoughts throughout the chapter. And that got me thinking, is this possibly Harry’s Slytherin side coming out or a little bit of Voldemort’s influence? Or is this part of Harry’s normal character? And if it is part of Harry’s normal character, what are the implications of that, for Harry as we know him? How ambitious is Harry? [pause] That is my question, and I’d love to see your responses.

Michael: That’s a good question. I’m actually dying to respond and defend Harry but we’ll save it for the listeners. [laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: But anyway, we wanted to thank you, Kelsey, for joining us on this episode.

Kelsey: Oh, thank you for having me. It was a lot of fun.

Kat: Oh! Snaps for Kelsey. [snaps fingers]

Michael: Yes! Snaps for Kelsey. [snaps fingers] I’m so glad you got to join us when we went down to the Triwizard Tournament. It was exciting, wasn’t it?

Kelsey: It was indeed.

Michael: Yeah. Good refreshments and everything.

Kat: Yeah.

Kelsey: [laughs] Even though there wasn’t much to see, but it was okay.

Michael: Yeah. Yeah. No. But did you see when those glasses flew out of the maze? What was going on there?

[Kat laughs]

Kelsey: That was so crazy!

[Michael laughs]

Noah: But the music was good.

Kat: The music was good.

Michael: Yes. Kat…

Noah: It was on endless repeat, of course, but it was good.

Michael: That Hogwarts orchestra, they’re quite impressive, aren’t they?

Kelsey: It went well with all the screaming we heard.

Michael: Yeah, yeah.

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Noah: A normal day at Hogwarts.

Michael: Just another day.

[Kelsey laughs]

Noah: And if you would like to be on the show, and by you, I mean dear listener, just like Kelsey was on the show, just head over to our website and just check the “Be on the Show” page. That’s – go there and send your submissions in. Just make sure you have the appropriate audio equipment, as always.

Kat: And, of course, in the meantime, if you want to stay in touch with us, you can find us on Twitter at @AlohomoraMN,, at our phone number 206-GO-ALBUS – that’s 206-462-5287. Of course, we would love for you to subscribe and leave us a review on iTunes, because we love reading those. And… this is new, we introduced this last week, but we now have a Snapchat, so you can follow us at mn_alohomora. And, of course, as always, you can leave us an Audioboo, directly on All you need is a microphone and an Internet connection; it is totally free. We want to hear your questions and your comments, so send them in!

Michael: And, of course, we’re not going to send you down to the Third Task without looking good.

[Kelsey and Noah laugh]

Michael: And at our store, we have got T-shirts. Do we have T-shirts because… well, it’s warming up in Harry’s world, not really in ours. [laughs] But we have T-shirts, and we have long-sleeved since it’s still cold out there, as well as tote bags, sweatshirts, flip-flops, water bottles, travel mugs, and pretty much everything you’re going to need to view the Triwizard Tournament. We have over eighty products to choose from, so make sure [to] check those out. We also have ringtones when you’re off-campus at Hogwarts.

Noah: And, of course, there’s the Alohomora! app, available seemingly worldwide. Prices may vary depending on what kind of phone you use to access this content, but we’ve got transcripts, bloopers, alternative endings, and lots of videos from the hosts. I recently recorded a funny video that I hope you all get to see. That about wraps up the show, Episode 69!

[Show music begins]

Noah: I’m Noah Fried.

Michael: I’m Michael Harle.

Kat: And I’m Kat Miller. Thank you for listening to Episode 69 of Alohomora!

Noah: Open the Dumbledore!

[Show music continues]

Noah: Hello? Is everybody there? I can only hear myself now. Uh oh. Is anybody out there? Hello? Kat? Michael? Kelsey? Hello? Can you hear me, question mark? Oh no. No, no, no, no. Oh, this is bad. This is not how I wanted to start this. At all.

[Prolonged silence]

Noah: I just want to remind all the fans that if you want to get the maximum pleasure out of this episode, you should read Chapter 31: “The Third Task” before you continue to listen to our conversation.

Kat: Can we not make any jokes like that on Episode 69?

Noah: That was an accident. I didn’t mean…

[Kelsey, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Noah: It just came out! It just came out!

Kat: Wait, Kelsey, how old are you?

Kelsey: I’m 24.

Kat: Okay, great. We don’t have to worry about being crass, then.

Kelsey: So that’s cool.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Noah: Sometimes stuff just comes out of my mouth and I don’t… well, anyway.

Kat: I’m dying to do a “That’s what she said.” Sorry.

[Kat, Kelsey, and Noah sing “Hogwarts’ March”]

Noah: All right, I got the trombone, Dumbledore.

[Kelsey and Michael laugh]

Michael: That was very nice.

Kat: We can stop recording now.

[Michael laughs]