Transcript – Episode 150

[Show music begins]

Michael Harle: This is Episode 150 of Alohomora! for August 8, 2015.

[Show music continues]

Michael: Welcome, everybody, to not only MuggleNet’s global reread of the Harry Potter series with Alohomora! but also today our movie watch. Our live movie watch of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. I’m Michael Harle.

Kat Miller: I’m Kat Miller.

Eric Scull: I’m Eric Scull.

Alison Siggard: I’m Alison Siggard.

Kristen Keys: I’m Kristen Keys.

Rosie Morris: And I’m Rosie Morris. There are so many of us!

Kat: Wow!

[Alison, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: There’s a lot of people.

Kat: All but one. All but one.

Rosie: And of course, our fan guest today will be all of you guys. Just as a quick reminder, there are two ways you can get in contact with us. First of all, by phone, you can give us a call at 1-206-GO-ALBUS – that’s 206-462-5287. And secondly, you can contact us on Skype, which is useful for you guys that are international. Just give us a ring at AlohomoraMN. If you don’t get through, keep trying. There are so many of you trying to reach us at the moment, it’s amazing. So yeah, just keep trying. Leave us a voicemail if possible… well, actually, best not to today. Just keep trying and we’ll get you onto the live show.

Kat: Yay! Guys, that movie watch was really, really fun, by the way.

Alison: Yes.

Rosie: It was so fun.

Kat: Yeah. I think most amount of snark I’ve seen out of the listeners out of all the movie watches.

[Kristen and Rosie laugh]

Michael: I was going to say – and I feel like I should have anticipated – but this movie watch more than any other, there were definitely specific moments where the chat just blew up.

Kat: Yeah.

Alison: Yes.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Indeed.

Alison: Yes!

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: Special shoutout to pincers, just because it’s so amazing.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kat: Yeah. So good, so good. So thank you, everyone who just joined us to watch the movie. It was particularly fun, I think.

Alison: And now even though we’re watching the movie today, make sure you listen to our book wrap and international cover discussion. We just released it this morning, so soon as we’re done with this, you can still listen to our voices because we have another episode.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Michael: You don’t have anything to do, like work, or eat, or sleep.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Eric: It’s Saturday.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: Some of us have to work on Saturday. [laughs]

Eric: Yeah. I work next Saturday, but this Saturday, no.

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: But isn’t it fun when our job is to talk to all of these amazing guys out there watching movies with us?

Eric: Yes, it is.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Eric: It certainly is. I forgot how much I loved this movie.

Rosie: It’s a good movie.

[Alison groans]

Rosie: There are moments I like, and there are moments I don’t like. But it surprises me every time I watch it that I actually like more of it than I remember. [laughs]

Alison: That’s true.

Eric: I completely agree, I feel the same. Is there anybody who’s like, it’s their least favorite movie?

Michael: Alison.

Alison: Yes, me. I hate this movie.

Eric: What?!

[Rosie laughs]

[Alison groans]

Michael: This is Alison’s least favorite movie of the series, isn’t it?

Eric: Girl, you craaa-zy!

Alison: It is… it’s so bad! [laughs]

Michael: Which is crazy. [laughs] But there you go.

Eric: No.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Eric: Oh, man.

Michael: Yeah, no. This one’s my second favorite actually…

Eric: Behind…

Michael: … behind Prisoner.

Eric: Oh, I…

[Alison groans]

Rosie: Is it because there’s a fair amount of Lupin in it? [laughs]

Michael: No, no, not at all. Lupin’s one of my least favorite parts of this movie.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: Fair enough.

Michael: We’ll get to that. No, no, I actually like it because I think – and we’ll talk about this more – but I think this movie takes a lot of inspiration from Prisoner. There’s a lot of stylistic elements in here that are very similar to Prisoner in my opinion.

Rosie: A quick note to our audience: this is a live show today, so we’re slightly less polished than we might normally be.

[Alison, Eric, and Michael laugh]

Rosie: You will hear us make mistakes, correct ourselves, and stuff might happen that wouldn’t normally happen in a very polished episode of Alohomora! [laughs]

Eric: I want to rewatch this movie. This movie’s so good, having just watched it, that I want to go back on my Blu-ray and watch the maximum movie mode version. Do you guys have that on your Blu-ray?

Alison: No, I only have the DVD.

Eric: I forgot about this feature… it’s all the interviews and stuff that take place during the film. It’s pretty cool.

Alison: Oh, yeah.

Kristen: I have it, but I’ve never actually watched it that way before.

Eric: Yeah.

Michael: I only have it on…

Eric: It’s really cool. I remember browsing through it once. I’d watched it all with The Deathly Hallows but not with this one.

Kristen: Hmm… may have to give it a try.

Eric: Mhm.

Alison: I don’t remember what special features are on this DVD. That’s what I…

Michael: There’s like no special features on this DVD. This is…

Alison: Really? I never remember.

Michael: This is the point in history when a lot of studios, including Warner Bros., were like, “Screw special features! Go get the Blu-ray. You get nothing.”

Kat: It’s true.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: And there’s barely anything on this DVD. It’s very sad.

Alison: Oh, okay.

Michael: You get a preview for Deathly Hallows – Part 1, though. [laughs]

Kat: Yay!

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: Yeah.

Eric: Just what I’ve always wanted.

[Michael laughs]

Alison: I also have the fancy Target holographic case.

Eric: Ooh.

Michael: I have that.

Kristen: Oh, nice.

Alison: Yeah.

Eric: I like that case, but it’s not my favorite design.

Alison: No.

Eric: Because it’s a close-up of them.

Alison: It’s huge.

Eric: Yeah.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Rosie: Oh, that’s interesting. Okay, GoingToTranslateThis says that the Catholic girl should have played Lavender.

Alison: Oh.

Michael: Oh! Since Lavender was black in the third film.

Kat: That would have been funny.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah. So tall… she’s so tall.

Rosie: She was very tall.

Alison: [laughs] Yeah.

Eric: Everybody’s tall next to Dan.

Alison: Dan Rad is just short.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Eric: Even Ginny in The Burrow is taller than…

Alison: Yes!

[Kristen laughs]

Kat: Guys, we have a caller on the line.

Michael: Woo! Already.

Kat: All righty. Hello, caller.

Caller: Hi.

Kat: Hi. What’s your name? Where are you from?

Caller: My name is Dana and I’m from California.

Kat: Oh, okay.

Michael: Woo!

Rosie: Hi, Dana, nice to meet you.

Caller: Nice to meet you guys. I love you guys. I post sometimes as SocksAreImportant.

Kat: Nice.

Michael: [laughs] Oh, yeah.

Kristen: Nice. I saw that.

Rosie: They are very important.

Kat: Very important. Mhm.

[Rosie laughs]

Caller: I just wanted to… I remember waiting in line to go to this movie and thinking about how I would react differently if Book 7 had not been released before going to see the movie. So I’m just curious if you guys have an idea as far as maybe scenes would have to be filmed differently, like maybe Jo would have had to have had more insight as to how Snape killing Dumbledore… maybe Harry would have had to have been under the Invisibility Cloak, or anything like that. Or do you think you would have had the same reaction that you had reading the book as you did watching the movie?

Michael: That’s a really good question.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: The main thing that really annoys me is the hiding-the-book-in-the-Room-of-Requirement scene.

[Eric laughs]

Caller: Oh, yeah.

Rosie: Just the fact…

Eric: “Close your eyes so you won’t be tempted.”

Rosie: … we don’t see where it’s hidden…

Alison: Oh, gosh.

Kat: Terrible.

Alison: Ugh!

Rosie: That’s a major plot point in the last book. We needed to know where that was and… yeah.

Eric: Rosie, Rosie, “I can stay hidden up here too if you like.”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Eww!

Kat: So bad.

Eric: Woah, woah, wait. It’s important… the book is not important though. Where the book is hidden isn’t important. It’s just that when he goes to hide it, he notices the diadem.

Rosie: Yeah, but without him hiding it, he won’t notice that and then…

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: … he’s just going to be searching in that Room of Lost Things forever.

Eric: [laughs] Oh.

Alison: There’s also the fact that they cut out all of the memory scenes, and so we don’t know what the Horcruxes are. So they had to add in that weird spidey-sense, Horcrux-sensed ability thing instead of them actually having a clear purpose and clear something they’re looking for. [laughs]

Eric: I wonder if that saves them time in Movie 6 or saves them more time in Movie 8, now that… just kind of like a decision for the future?

Kristen: I guess, but…

Alison: I don’t know.

Rosie: Not sure. [laughs]

Eric: I mean, I would have liked to have seen… the Gaunt house memory is my favorite part of any of the books.

Kristen: Yes.

Eric: So I definitely would have liked to see that adapted.

Kat: Yeah, I feel like leaving out exactly what the Horcruxes are was such a big failing of this movie…

Kristen: Yes.

Kat: … even though I do enjoy this movie. It’s such a big failing, especially when Dumbledore says, “Oh, they can be the most commonplace of objects.”

Alison: Ugh! So bad.

Kat: Yeah, yeah, very bad indeed. Please.

Michael: Before we go into more in-depth kind of piece-by-piece, scene-by scene movie discussion, Eric, I think you’ve got the handle on the history and the stats of this movie.

Eric: [in old man’s British accent] Yes! Mhm.

Michael: [in old man’s British accent] Oh, yeah.

Eric: [in old man’s British accent] The movie history.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: [in old man’s British accent] Movies, yes. Cinema.

Eric: So for this film actually – as we mentioned, or actually as our listener mentioned – filming commenced on September 24, 2007, which was two months after the final book was released. So, filming commenced on September 24, 2007, it wrapped May 17, 2008, and the film premiered on July 15, 2009, which is one day short of the fourth anniversary of the book being released in print.

Kat: Huh.

Eric: So just some interesting dates – playing with dates, always fun. It did manage to break the record for single-day worldwide gross, and it received a total gross of $934 million. That’s almost a billion dollars this movie made!

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Crazy.

[Alison laughs]

Eric: So if this is your least favorite film, Alison…

Alison: Ugh!

Eric: … nobody cares.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Least favorite Harry Potter film, though.

Eric: Yes, yes.

Alison: So…

Eric: Okay, okay, that’s fair. That’s a fair…

Michael: You know, we don’t use money and accolades to justify the quality of a film.

Alison: No.

Michael: They’re good for information, but they don’t complete…

Eric: They’re… well, it’s in the doc, so I read it.

Michael: [laughs] I just read it. Don’t kill the messenger.

Eric: So if you were to not adjust for inflation, it is the thirty-second highest grossing film of all time. And it is the fifth highest grossing film of the franchise, which actually means… I mean, if you read that another way, it’s actually the third poorest film.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: That’s true.

[Kat and Michael laughs]

Eric: Out of eight. Interesting.

Rosie: I think a lot of people reading this book… the book feels slightly filler-ish, and it was always a bit kind of uncertain how it would translate into a movie. So I think people were kind of put off from seeing the film because they knew there wasn’t going to be much action in it. So, maybe they were kind of waiting for the Deathly Hallows movies and kind of skipped this one.

Michael: I think that was a big concern for this film…

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: … because there really isn’t that much action. I know, too… I was thinking about the movie and the video game because I was like, “What are they going to do?” [laughs] There’s nothing to do in a video game for Half-Blood Prince.

[Kristen and Rosie laughs]

Eric: Well, I wasn’t… I don’t know if I’m watching it for action. I was actually looking more towards the…

Michael: Story.

Eric: … inter-personal stuff.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: Yeah, yeah, I agree.

Rosie: Because they did so well on the relationships in this film.

[Kristen laughs]

Eric: Well…

Alison: Oh my goodness.

Eric: I will argue…

Alison: Ahh!

Eric: I will argue about 50/50 on that, Rosie. We can talk about it a little later, but there are tiny moments between characters. So if you go into the movie looking for the characters… not the book characters, oh heavens, no!

[Alison, Kat, and Michael laugh]

Eric: But if you go in looking for the movie characters, you’re pretty pleased, I think. Because there’s… all of Harry under Felix is amazing, but there’s little moments like Luna fixing Harry’s broken nose in the beginning.

Alison: Yes.

Kat: Yeah.

Eric: And it’s just… pretty much everything with Luna in it, every scene… just rocks. She just rocks it.

Alison: Luna just makes everything better. [laughs]

Eric: That’s true. Now the film, despite its poor showing at the box office comparatively… currently holds an 84 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which means it’s pretty darn good.

[Alison sighs]

Michael: Yeah, just kind of shows it’s in the same family as Prisoner, because Prisoner did very bad comparatively by box office numbers, but it was one of the best critically received next to Hallows – Part 2, which I think in retrospect does not deserve its high rating on Rotten Tomatoes. [laughs]

Kat: Casual scoff.

Alison: What? What?

Kristen: Way better than Prisoner of Azkaban.

Alison: Guys, way better than this movie.

Kat: No.

Kristen: I like this movie.

Eric: We just spoke of Prisoner of Azkaban, and it says here [that] before David Yates was officially selected as director for Movie 6, Alfonso Cuarón, the third film’s director, expressed interest, but Yates was selected before the filming of Order of the Phoenix ended, and they began pre-production while Order was being promoted. So the decisions were made higher up to keep Yates on for the sixth, and I mean, that is just the decision that they kept making throughout the last four films.

Kat: Which I’m so happy with. Imagine if the last four movies all had different directors. Oh God, it would have been terrible.

Michael: It’s so sweet too. Yates in an interview, when he was asked about why they kept him on, he was like, “I don’t know. They just watched Order, and they were like, ‘Oh, this is good.’ Then they said I could stay.”

Eric: He is genuinely the most gracious guy. I know that from interviewing him myself. He’s just so nice about everything, and I like that he was able to maintain that steady hand, although each film… as you said, Michael, Movie 6 does not feel like Movie 5.

Michael: Yeah, it’s funny because Yates really doesn’t have much consistency between his four movies compared to, say, the only other person who stayed on for more than one, which is Columbus. His are very obviously the same style.

Rosie: Yeah, RoseLumos says, “I wonder what the movie could have looked like if Chris Columbus had come back.”

Michael: Oh my God.

Alison: That would have been terrible.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Eric: No, I disagree.

Rosie: I think the other movies have a really nice Christmas-y feel, and [they’re] very much children’s movies. These are not children’s movies now. So Chris Columbus has a brand of style, but he would need…

Eric: Oh, Rent was not a children’s movie.

Rosie: Yeah, exactly, he does have other things in his toolbox. So he would have been able to do it in a very different way than he would have done the first two movies probably. It’s nice that he knows the cast as well.

Eric: I do want another Chris Columbus Harry Potter film, but looking back, I wanted it to be three. I wouldn’t want it to be seven or eight. I would have just wanted it to have been Prisoner, which he produced.

Michael: That’s so funny, because I don’t know if you guys know this, but in filmmaking circles, Chris Columbus is a dirty word.

[Rosie laughs]

Kat: Yeah, it’s true.

Michael: Because he is one of the most conventional, popular directors right now. He does nothing special with cinematography, and he doesn’t really let cinematography tell the story, in a way. I think that all of the other directors had that over him for Harry Potter. At least they let the camera tell the story to some degree, and Chris is excellent at just doing filmmaking 101. He is shot, reverse shot, pan shot, establishing shot.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Michael: If you took an intro to film class, you could also be a Chris Columbus, listeners.

Eric: Wow.

Michael: It’s true.

Rosie: But then sometimes the cinematography overtakes the story, and I think that does happen occasionally within these Harry Potter films, and [it’s] not necessarily a good thing. We need a balance somewhere.

Eric: Yeah, definitely. Well, apparently, Emma wanted balance, because Emma Watson…

[Michael laughs]

Eric: … threatened to quit. I don’t remember this at all.

Alison: Really?

Kristen: Me neither.

Eric: Somebody else would have to fill me in.

Michael: Yep, she threatened to quit twice. She threatened to quite before Potter ended.

Alison: For what?

Michael: Because she was tired.

Rosie: Well, it’s because they were growing up in the public eye, and they were never really quite sure if they wanted to, and if you remember the amount of attention that Emma got when she was 14, 15, and it was not the kind of attention you want as a 14-year-old girl.

Eric: She probably got more attention than the boys.

Rosie: It had led her to do what she’s doing now, but she was not comfortable with it then at all.

Michael: Well, yes, if you guys remember the horrible scandal about her body image on the Order of the Phoenix poster.

Rosie: Oh God, on the poster.

Kat: Yeah, that was terrible.

Michael: Which, I mean, things like that happening to you at that age, yes, that must be horrible. So yeah, like I said, I know she expressed being overworked, and I think out of the trio, she was the one to earliest express wanting to do other things, maybe going back to her education proper and looking at other projects, whereas the others were pretty content to stay with Potter, but of course, in the end, we know that she didn’t leave.

[Kristen laughs]

Eric: I’m really glad they put on a unified front, and actually, the trio made it through all what ended up being eight films.

Kat: Thank God.

Eric: Really glad about that. That’s one thing I’m proud of. That they didn’t have to switch up actors. Even though that was joked about all the time on Saturday Night Live and stuff.

Michael: [in a British accent] “I’m 35. I’m Harry Potter.”

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Eric: So going back, still more history to get through. Just three more points: Clémence Poésy, who played Fleur, and Chris Rankin, who played Percy, wanted to return. In the end, they did not do so until Deathly Hallows – Part 2. This is a situation where you have an actor who wants to work, but the story, pacing, whatever else you want to say does not have room for them in the film. Would have liked to have seen… actually no, that’s not true. Fleur is impossible to deal with in this book.

[Eric, Kristen, and Michael laugh]

Eric: Very glad that we did not have an excess of phlegm.

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Kat: I would have loved to see her. I love her.

Alison: I would have loved it. I would have loved it.

Kat: I think that Clémence is great.

Alison: I would have loved Percy. I would have loved… Percy’s redemption story is one of my favorite subplots. So I would have loved for them to include it in some form. And we don’t really get it at all in the films, and I wish that it happened.

Michael: Yeah, I think the problem with the movies is that you do… these characters really do have such… if you try to translate their moments to movies, they really only would have such small moments, but when you do bring them back way, way late in the game, there’s nothing satisfying, really, about bringing them back. Because Chris Rankin… he’s there in Deathly Hallows – Part 2. He gets one sad look at Harry…

Alison: He shows up. [laughs]

Michael: … when he’s dead, and you’re like, “Who’s that?” and then [laughs] “Oh! He must be a Weasley! He has red hair.” And Fleur has her one line. “He’s weak…”

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Michael: … and you have no idea what she’s saying.

Kat: But she’s… wait, wait, but Fluer is in Part 1.

Michael: She is in Part 1, that’s true. She [unintelligible] Part 1 for a little bit too.

Kat: So we’ve connected her a little bit more anyway. I mean, because Chris Rankin has that killer nod that he does in Movie 5 where he’s like, “Mhm.”

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Kat: He kills it.

Eric: I think with Chris, too… and we may have to talk about it with him later, but there was much more that he had to do in the last movie that got cut. I think a lot of actors were surprised to find their roles were dramatically reduced for this film.

Rosie: But as BadgerPride says, Percy’s plot doesn’t add anything to the main plot in the later films, so it’s an obvious one to cut. I think they’ve tried to put in as much as possible but then restricted it back and back so that they could get the rest of the fight scenes and all of that kind of thing in.

Kat: I mean, we just need the extended movies. Just put everything back in…

[Everyone laughs]

Kat:à la Peter Jackson.

Kristen: I’d watch that.

Rosie: Yeah, if they can have the director’s cut of Lord of the Rings that you have to use the whole weekend to watch, we would happily have those for Harry Potter.

Kat: I would rebuy all the movies. Are you listening, Warner Bros.?

Alison: In a heartbeat.

Kristen: I would pay money for that.

Kat: I would rebuy all the movies.

Eric: So… and I will say, too, Percy shows up at Dumbledore’s funeral as well. Which was obviously removed from the film because they couldn’t pay 50 other actors to come back.

[Eric and Kristen laugh]

Michael: Cameo. [laughs]

Eric: I mean, Madame Maxime and Umbridge…

Rosie: Yeah, there would have been a lot of people.

Eric: … and centaurs and mermaids and all of that.

Kat: That would’ve been an expensive funeral.

Eric: For five minutes of screen time. No, sorry, two minutes. Let’s be honest. So also, actors Jamie Campbell-Bower – who ended up playing young Grindelwald, right?

Kat and Rosie: Uh-huh.

Eric: … and Bill Nighy vied for roles in the film. Bill Nighy would be cast as Rufus Scrimgeour, who is in the book but would not make it until the next film. So there’s that. And this film…

Rosie: Do we know who Jamie went for? I think he would have gone for McClaggen.

Eric: Yeah, good question.

Michael: Oh, for Jamie Campbell? He wanted teenage Voldemort.

Rosie: Oh.

Alison: Oh, that makes sense.

Rosie: Well, we’ll give him a different Dark wizard, then. That’s fine.

Kat: Yeah, that’s fine.

[Alison, Kristen, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Eric: I still would’ve liked to have seen Christian Coulson be back, perhaps not as 16-year-old Voldemort anymore, but if they had done the 22-year-old Voldemort scenes.

Alison: Definitely, that would have been perfect.

Rosie: Yeah, he would have been perfect as the Voldemort in the Gaunt house.

Michael: My heart was broken that Christian Coulson didn’t come back, because if any of you listeners haven’t seen him lately, he still looks pretty much the same.

Kat: Yeah, he is beautiful.

Michael: He aged very well. He still could have played.

Alison: Ooh, that’s nice to know.

[Kristen laughs]

Kat: And he’s a photographer [who] lives near me, so that’s pretty awesome.

[Rosie laughs]

Kat: I’m just saying.

Kristen: Oh, wow!

Rosie: Kat, no stalking.

[Alison, Eric, Kristen, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Kat: No! I haven’t got that far yet. I would like to happily run into him somewhere, but it hasn’t happened.

Eric: This is your daily no stalking Christian Coulson.

[Alison, Kristen, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: And he’s gay too!

Kat: Of course.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: And one for me! Yay!

Eric: And a little bit of history for you all, the film had an aggressive marketing campaign, which cost 155 million dollars. That’s crazy. And they released more clips in advance than ever before via TV and online.

Rosie: I remember that, yeah. There was so much for the fandom online at that moment.

Kat: Welcome to the Internet.

Rosie: You don’t need to advertise these films that much.

[Eric laughs]

Kristen: Yeah, right? [laughs]

Alison: In fact, that’s actually why my sister, my mom, and I, started watching BBC’s Merlin.

[Rosie laughs]

Alison: Because the first episode had a clip from this movie in it. And so we had to watch it.

Rosie: I remember that one, yeah.

Eric: I never liked when they release the clips, except… I guess I felt like they maybe needed to do it because they delayed this movie.

Rosie: They needed to fill the gap.

Eric: Terrance just reminded us: This was the movie that was delayed. It was pushed back I think six or eight months even – something terrible – and this was around the time of that controversy as well, with the president of Warner Bros. Alan Horn going on and saying that it was a decision they had to do, but also, the silver lining is that it would be a lot closer to the next movie’s release and all sorts of stuff. Warner Bros. got a lot of negative feedback for that, and so I think they were very nervous and went all out showing clips and stuff to prove that this movie would be good and interest people in seeing it.

Kat: That makes sense. That seems like a valid reasoning. I remember that. I remember being so mad.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Michael: Too many clips in advance for me. I felt so spoiled by the time I watched the movie. I felt I had already watched the movie.

Eric: You didn’t have to watch them.

Kat: That’s true.

Michael: Well, but that was back in the day when it was… because you know now when you get a gazillion clips for a movie, people really do say, “Oh, I’m not watching any of them,” but this was the early days of this where that was the first… because this was the first Potter movie where they really did that. Because that wasn’t really available before, so I think it was considered an unusual thing and a treat, but then I think for the first…

Rosie: Was it for [unintelligible] had to do some 3D things with it, or was that only Deathly Hallows – Part 1?

Michael: That’s a good question.

Kristen: I saw it in 3D, but it was only the first ten or fifteen minutes [were] in 3D, and then the rest was not. I went back and saw it, so I didn’t see the point in that.

Eric: The Ministry scene in Order of the Phoenix. Wasn’t some kind of 3D?

Kat: It was. Yeah, the last 15 minutes of Order [were] 3D.

Eric: They were definitely tinkering with it, but I think Rosie is right. I don’t think they made a full 3D version until at least [Movie] 7 or [Movie] 8.

Rosie: I think it’s because the 3D tale was developing as it went, and it was just not getting ready in time, and then it was just “We’ll try it because everything else is at the moment,” but then yeah, it didn’t work very well.

Michael: Yeah, that was the other thing, is that this was an experimental time for 3D as well, and really, it was also a big thing to… and we’re seeing it slow down at least a little bit now, but back then, once one movie did 3D, every studio was like, “Oh my God, we have to do 3D or nobody is ever going to see our movies.” So Warner Bros. stuffed 3D into Harry Potter wherever they could desperately because they were worried about that, and they knew that it would also boost ticket sales because if you’re selling an IMAX 3D ticket at an inflated price, you can make up for what you think your losses are going to be just by competing with standard showings versus other 3D showings. So that’s what boosts the idea that 3D needs to be in your movies, but you’re right, they wouldn’t fully do 3D because I think they canceled 3D for Part 1 because they felt it wasn’t good enough. So they actually had to…

Alison: Yeah, I think I remember that.

Kristen: Yeah, I remember that.

Michael: So they actually were brave enough to cancel that. Then they did Part 2, and oh my God, what… oh my God.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: I don’t think I’ve ever seen it in 3D. It was not worth it.

Kat: Let us just say, Alison, it wasn’t going to win any awards.

[Alison, Kristen, and Michael laugh]

Alison: Yeah. But this one was nominated for a few, and the first one is it was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Cinematography, which was deserving, deserving. There'[re] good moments.

Michael: It’s the only Potter film to get a Best Cinematography nod, and it deserved it.

Kat: Rightfully so. Beautiful.

Michael: Prisoner should have gotten one too.

Alison: Oh yeah, definitely.

[Alison, Michael, and Kat laugh]

Alison: It also was given the Art Directors Guild Award for Excellence in Production Design for a feature film… oh, actually, sorry, it was nominated.

[Michael laughs]

Alison: My bad. Production Design, interesting. It was nominated for a BAFTA in Best Production Design and for Best Visual Effects, which I don’t think these are the best visual effects in these movies.

Kat: Well, don’t forget to count the Inferi, and they’re okay. That fire in that scene is amazing.

Rosie: The fire is really cool.

Alison: That’s true, yeah.

Michael: The Death Eaters bridge scene…

Rosie: And also the memories, going into the memories is really good visual effects.

Alison: Yeah, that is true.

Kristen: Yeah, certainly that.

Michael: Slughorn turning into a human from a chair.

Kat: That’s adorable.

Michael: It’s an excellent effect.

Kat: It is.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: All right, it was also nominated for a Grammy in the Best Score Soundtrack Album Promotion Picture [category].

Rosie: So well deserved.

Alison: It’s a good one.

Eric: Guys, wouldn’t it be really funny if the Harry Potter series had won a Grammy but not an Oscar?

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: So à propos.

Kristen: It has wonderful scores, though. It should have.

Alison: This one’s not my favorite, but this one… I forgot there were some really good…

Eric: I honestly feel like some of the music… and music from this film may most be played at the Wizarding World.

Kat: Definitely.

Kristen: Yeah. Oh, definitely, yes.

Eric: It’s the sleeper soundtrack because you hear it the most if you’re walking around, but you don’t… it’s not… you can’t place it or whatever.

Kat: It’s way up there in the rankings for me as far as favorites go.

Kristen: It’s played at the Studio Tour as well.

Michael: Yeah, what’s impressive to me about this score – because we talked about this a lot in the last movie watch with Order – is that not very many of us like Hooper’s score for Order, and to me, just like Yates, he did some reassessing. He went back, and I think he evaluated what had come before him. Because Hooper and Yates did not know what they were… they have admitted that they did not know what they were getting into when they were taken on for Order, which is clear because both of them came from television, not from film.

Rosie: Yeah, that’s true.

Michael: And I think something about this movie marks a change for both of them, and Hooper’s score is… he’s just a little more… he’s composing, I think, moments for each character that are a little more significant. Each moment, he’s going more Williams’ style. He’s not just doing blanket tones for moments; he’s actually scoring to each shot, which is really nice.

Alison: Yes. It was also nominated for the People’s Choice Favorite Movie, Favorite Franchise, and Best On-Screen Team.

Michael: But it didn’t win.

Alison: Yeah, that’s a little strange. It’s so sad.

Kat: Didn’t Twilight win?

Michael: How could it be people’s choice?

Alison: I know.

Eric: But wasn’t that the year…? I mean, wasn’t Twilight out by then?

Alison: Yeah, that’s true.

Eric: I’m sure one of the Twilight movies probably won. They were scooping up all those children’s awards.

Kat: Stupid. That’s fine, whatever.

Alison: It won… here’s the first one it won.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Alison: It won at the Scream Awards for the Holy [Expletive] Scene of the Year.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: For the Death Eaters attacking London, which…

Eric: Yes!

Alison: Really? Like…

Eric: I love that!

Rosie: It is quite fun to walk across that bridge and think, “Hey, this was destroyed!”

Kat: Yeah, it is.

Alison: That is fun. That was fun to see that one. And…

Eric: It’s on the Harry Potter Walking Tour of London.

Alison: Yes. It also won for Best Ensemble. Definitely deserving.

Eric: Yay!

Alison: This was a good one for that. It won the 2009 Teen Choice Awards for Choice Summer Movie: Action Adventure, and it also won – or it was nominated – for the 2010 Teen Choice Awards for Choice Movie: Fantasy and Choice Movie Actress: Fantasy.

Kat: I love how it won 2009 and didn’t win in 2010.

Alison: [laughs] And didn’t win in 2010.

[Michael laughs]

Eric: “This movie is so last year.”

Alison: [unintelligible] move on too fast.

Kat: Yeah.

[Kristen laughs]

Alison: And at the MTV Movie Awards, it was nominated for Best Movie, Best Female Performance, Best Male Performance, Best Global Superstar, and Tom Felton won as Best Villain.

[Kristen laughs]

Rosie: I remember watching that one because it was nominated for so many. We were like, “It was bound to win. It’s the MTV Movie Awards!”

[Eric laughs]

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: And you’re like, “Oh.”

Rosie: And the only one that won was Tom.

Kat: Oh.

Alison: So deserved. He is phenomenal in this film.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: Now, I know a lot of the listeners said… and this conversation, I think, will continue through our Deathly Hallows movie watch, but the listeners were already talking about how they felt that Alan Rickman deserved recognition of some kind./p>

Rosie: Yes, everyone has been saying that in the chat that he should have had an Oscar for Snape.

Alison: Oh, yeah!

Kat: I don’t know if I agree with that.

Michael: Yeah, I don’t.

[Rosie laughs]

Kat: I don’t agree with that.

Eric: I will say that I found both Alan Rickman and Michael Gambon far more palatable in this movie than ever before.

Michael: Yep.

Alison: Yeah.

Eric: Well, especially Michael Gambon. He’s more of a…

Alison: Yes.

Kristen: Yes.

Eric: But Snape… I mean, Alan Rickman is Snape. There’s a lot of actual humor that I forgot until rewatching this movie today – a lot of… like Slughorn’s party.

Michael: [laughs] Oh my God, yes.

Alison: [laughs] Oh, yes.

Eric: When Snape slides away without saying anything.

Michael: [laughs] Yes!

Alison: [laughs] Yeah.

Eric: It’s a lot of humor that he was able to put in that role and I really appreciated that, considering all the stuff that Snape was going through.

Alison: Maggie Smith in this film, I forgot how phenomenal she is in this movie.

Kat: And she’s like deathly sick with cancer.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: And she still freakin’ rocks it!

Kristen: Amazing woman.

Rosie: Dan was her assistant for this film as well.

Alison and Eric: Aww.

Rosie: Like, all of the pictures you see of Dan holding an umbrella while she’s reading a newspaper, that’s [unintelligible] I believe.

Alison and Eric: Aww.

Kat: Because you don’t be mean to Maggie Smith. You do anything she…

[Alison laughs]

Kat: … asks you to do.

Kristen: Truth.

Kat: “Pick up my tissue.” “Okay, mam.”

Eric: Aww.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Well, speaking of the actors, there were a lot of new cast members that joined us. Not as many as before and not certainly as many with significant roles. But a few of the ones worth mentioning, Helen McCrory…

Alison: Yes.

Michael: … who we discussed before was originally slated to play Bellatrix.

Kat: Mmm.

But thank goodness she didn’t. Because I think she was much more suited for Narcissa.

Rosie: Yeah.

Eric: Except for that brunette streak in her hair.

[Alison laughs]

Alison and Michael: I like that.

Alison: I like it too.

Eric: Yeah.

Alison: I liked how it ties her to both Bellatrix…

Michael: It’s supposed to… to both families.

Alison: … and the Malfoys. To be both black and [unintelligible].

Eric: Oh. Okay, all right, I’m sold.

Alison: Yep. That…

[Michael laughs]

Kat: She’s the ying to the yang, guys.

Alison: I like it.

Eric: I always say that… Helen McCrory’s character’s hair.

Michael: Yeah. Yes. So she was added in for a brief scene at the beginning. We were all just fangirling over her outfit that she gets in this movie.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Which, by the way, fun little fact: There’s wood framing in Narcissa’s dress. To get it to stay that shape.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: So that must have been horribly uncomfortable.

Kristen: Oww.

Michael: Yeah. Jim Broadbent. Jim Broadbent.

Alison, Eric, and Kat: Yes!

[Kristen laughs]

Michael: All hail Jim Broadbent.

Alison: No one else could play…

[Alison, Eric, and Michael laugh]

Michael: Yeah.

Eric: Can I say, Jim Broadbent may not have directly been book Slughorn but, he was the movie Slughorn.

Alison: Yes!

Kristen: Oh, yeah. He was.

Eric: For the movie they were making, he is the perfect Slughorn.

Kat: Yeah.

Alison and Kristen: Yes.

Eric: The level of emotion…

Rosie: The same as Umbridge.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: Not really book Umbridge, but she’s a perfect movie Umbridge and is amazing.

Eric: That’s a good… yeah.

Alison: Exactly.

Kristen: Mhm. I agree with that.

Michael: Absolutely. Yeah, Jim Broadbent. He was announced pretty early on, and pictures were released. And there was a bit of an uproar because he didn’t… he looked nothing like Slughorn.

Alison and Kat: Yeah.

Kat: You know…

Michael: I think he should have saw up pretty quickly…

[Alison laughs]

Michael: … once the movie started.

Kat: For me, I don’t really care if the movie characters don’t look exactly like the book. I really don’t. The whole issue with Harry’s eyes, I don’t care. That doesn’t bother me, whatever. As long as they act good, I don’t care. And he did.

Michael: Huh. I think it only bothers me a little bit, on occasion when the description, like with Harry’s eyes, was so integral. Or, with Lily’s eyes which is even more…

Kat: Sure.

Alison: Yeah. That’s a problem, with that one.

Michael: But I mean, like you said, Kat, Broadbent especially I think – he’s often cited as a standout for one of the actors who were added in who look nothing like their character…

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: … but totally exceeded expectation. And he just seemed to fully embrace the role. And speaking of fully embracing…

[Kat laughs]

Michael: Miss Jessie Cave!

[Alison, Kristen, and Michael laugh]

Alison: Yes!

Michael: Came glomping in [laughs] as Lavender Brown.

Kat: She is a gift to this planet.

Alison: She is a treasure.

Kat: I love Jessie Cave.

Michael: Goodness gracious.

Rosie: And her audition process, as well… hers was one of the massive searches for someone to play this character and everyone knew that they were going to get cast through this massive search, and to have that much pressure on you doing it, having to go into that casting process and knowing that you’re being tested for chemistry with someone that you’ve watched in all of these films and all of that kind of thing… I would not know how to even approach going into that audition.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: It’s so crazy.

Kat: Isn’t she the one that climbed into Rupert’s lap or something?

Rosie: Yeah. The first time she met him.

[Alison laughs]

Rosie: Climbing all over him and going completely crazy. It’s brilliant.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Michael: Well, and interesting that you bring that up, Rosie, because Jessie has said in interviews that she was probably, out of a lot of the people who joined late, she strikes many as being the most terribly nervous to join the cast but she’s mentioned many times that she was going into a very well established family.

Rosie: Yeah.

Kat: Mmm.

Kristen: Mhm. Yeah.

Michael: But props to her. It certainly doesn’t show. You’d think she’d been there the whole time.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Rosie: She should’ve been there the whole time.

Kat: She should’ve.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: Well, and speaking of that, Lavender was there before. This didn’t really cause much of a hubbub at the moment when she was cast so much as it did retroactively when people started realizing what had happened.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: But Lavender Brown is not white in her one appearance in the previous movies. She is black in Prisoner of Azkaban. She’s never identified by name. You can see her, though, listeners, if you look closely in Prisoner of Azkaban, she is occasionally hanging out with Parvati and Padma Patil, who are, of course, different actresses in Prisoner of Azkaban. But it did cause a minor issue for people because if she was black before and we changed that, that’s a bit of a whitewashing there, but the film creators claim that because Lavender had been described as pale in the books, that they should live up to that.

Eric: Hmm.

Michael: So that’s where that…

Kat: Speaking as someone who has been described as pale before, we have a special guest on the line.

Noah Fried: Hey, everybody! It’s Noah Fried!

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: Hey, Noah!

Eric: Noah! That bastard, how are you?

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Noah: I’m good! And I’d have to add that it’s definitely whitewashing, Michael.

Kat: Yeah, you came on at the perfect time, buddy.

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: Definitely. How’s everyone doing?

Alison and Kristen: Good.

Kat: Great. We’re discussing characters and Half-Blood Prince.

Noah: Swell. Oh, cool. Yeah, Lavender Brown’s the best. It is a shame what happens to her. Sorry for the spoiler.

[Kristen and Rosie laugh]

Eric: I really felt that her scene… Jessie Cave… I gained a lot of appreciation for the nuance of Jessie Cave’s performance in this…

Alison: Yes.

Eric: … from re-watching. I didn’t find it funny or entertaining at all while watching it when I was seventeen or nineteen when it came out.

Kat: It’s sad.

Eric: But re-watching it just now, yeah. I can see exactly…she was actually almost better than the material she was given.

Alison: Yes.

Kristen: Mhm.

Alison: Definitely.

Eric: She exists in that headspace where her character really believes that she’s in love with Ron, and it’s, of course, very sad to see her fall from grace there.

Kat: Yeah, there were a lot of really good additions to this movie.

Eric: Yeah. Really strong. And they fit in really well, I felt.

Kat: Yeah.

Eric: It never feels like they’re not…

Alison: Exactly.

Eric: … like they don’t belong to that world.

Kristen: Mhm.

Michael: Well, yes, and another good addition who was also playing a more comedic love part…

[Alison laughs]

Michael: … Freddie Stroma…

[Eric laughs]

Michael: … came in as Cormac McLaggen.

Eric: Look at Hermione and lick his face.

Kristen: Yeah.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: Yeah, a big favorite was the finger-licking scene with the ice cream. Oh, boy.

Noah: Now, here’s a question. When he catches the flea with his [unintelligible], is that magic, or is he just that good?

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: I think he’s just that good.

Alison: Yeah.

Noah: Wow.

Michael: He’s just that good at nonverbal summoning charms.

[Kristen and Rosie laugh]

Eric: Now, if I’m not mistaken, Freddie Stroma, the actor, is currently in a role on TV called Unreal, it’s called?

Kat: Yep.

Eric: The show, Unreal? He plays a televised version of The Bachelor but it’s like a behind the scenes of taking apart reality shows like that?

Kat: Mhm.

Eric: I think he plays the guy who they’re all looking after, so it might be fun to go and see…

Rosie: Not that he’s typecast as a gorgeous guy.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: No, not at all.

Eric: Of all the typecasts to be cast…

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Eric: Of all the types to be cast in, gorgeous guy? Yeah.

Michael: Well, yeah, and Internet, if you haven’t found this before, Freddie also modeled and there is a video of him doing a shoot where he is dancing around in just underwear and socks. You’re welcome, Internet.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: It’s lovely. Michael is not wrong.

Rosie: And as we know from our earlier caller, socks are involved in this.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: So moving on from some of the new students that were introduced, a big focus was who was going to play young Voldemort at different ages because Yates did say… Christian Coulson did express interest in coming back as Tom Riddle but Yates said, “No, you’re 30. You can’t play Voldemort.”

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Aww.

Michael: So for eleven-year-old Tom Riddle, Hero Fiennes-Tiffin was actually cast in the role, who was…

Rosie: He was so good!

Alison: He is so good.

Michael: … and he is related to Ralph Fiennes; he is one of his nephews.

Eric: Which is super cool.

Alison, Kristen, and Michael: Yeah.

Michael: Isn’t it? To have that little tie-in with that, and yes, I thought he did a pretty darn good job.

Eric: I love nepotism in film industries. [laughs]

Michael: Creepy genetics apparently run in the Fiennes family.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Not that they really look anything like each other, but…

Kat: Wait, they totally look like each other!

Kristen: Oh, yeah.

Eric: Not in character, though. Because Voldemort does not…

Kat: Oh, well, thank God he doesn’t look like Voldemort.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: They totally look alike, but if you were to cover him in white makeup and take away his nose digitally…

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: And for fifteen-year-old Tom Riddle, Frank Dillane was cast. That role was recast with Frank Dillane.

Eric: Also a good performance.

Kat and Michael: Yes.

Kat: And also in a new show where he’s typecast. He’s in a new Walking Dead spinoff show.

Eric: Oh, Fear the Walking Dead?

Michael: Oh!

Kat: Yeah, that one. Yep.

Eric: Nice.

Michael: But he got to play a pretty meaty, important role.

Eric: Yeah.

Michael: Oh, and another Hogwarts student; Pansy Parkinson had been recast as Scarlett Byrne, who was replacing both Genevieve Gaunt and Lauren Shotton in the role.

Eric: My girlfriend pointed this out when we were rewatching the film, but they dressed Scarlett Byrne down a lot, actually. Made her look a little bit more ordinary than she normally looks. She is gorgeous in real life.

Michael: Yeah, the funny thing is she’s described as having a pug face in the books.

Eric: Mhm.

Alison and Noah: Yeah.

Michael: In a way, though, I can actually… if you hit Scarlett Byrne at the right angle, they actually manage to get that. But you’re right, they did dress her down quite a bit.

Kat: Yeah, in the Potions scene she looks more like Pansy to me than she does on the train.

Alison, Eric, and Kristen: Yeah.

Michael: It’s all about the look on her face.

Alison and Kat: Mhm.

Michael: Now, there was another adult actor who was cast who really didn’t end up getting much to do except look scary.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Michael: And I believe his last name is… is it Legeno?

Rosie: I have no idea.

Michael: David Legeno, who tragically passed away recently. He was found in Death Valley, wasn’t he?

Alison and Eric: I think so, yeah.

Eric: He was an avid hiker.

Michael: Yeah. But he was Fenrir Greyback. We recently lost him, but he certainly did a good job of looking the part if anything, since they didn’t ever give him anything to say.

Alison: Yeah. He does have a line.

Michael: Talking on the tower, right?

Alison: I believe that’s him on the tower and he says, “Let me take care of him in my own way,” or something. I think that’s him.

Michael: Yeah, I thought that was him.

Alison: I mean, you don’t see who’s talking, but…

Michael: Yeah, I assumed it was him. The Carrows are there, and they were cast as well and they were kept for the last movies but I don’t think they ever actually say anything.

Rosie: No.

Michael: And Georgina Leonidas was added, replacing Emily Dale as Katie Bell. Emily Dale had stayed on for the first two films, actually, and she was quite tall and blonde, so that was also quite a switch…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kristen: Yeah.

Michael: … to a tiny little brunette, Georgina Leonidas. But she did get quite a moment in the film, at least. It’s certainly a very memorable one. I think the listeners were definitely praising the Katie Bell possession scene.

Rosie: Yes. It’s a very creepy scene. It’s really good.

Kristen: Yeah. Oh, yeah.

Michael: Very well received.

Rosie: Although, Hagrid is a bit wooden in it, but… never mind.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: He is! That’s, like, his only scene in the movie, too, where he actually…

Rosie: There’s no urgency. This girl has been cursed! We should be trying to help her and he’s just kind of stumbling up and picking her up…

Noah: Isn’t he drunk?

Eric: I have a feeling, yeah, he had just gone for a drink.

Michael: I bet he’s always drunk.

Noah: I thought he was drunk in that scene and it was impairing his ability to function as an adult.

Rosie: I’m not sure.

Alison: I don’t know…

Michael: I think if he was that drunk, he would have dropped her.

Noah: It’s true.

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: He is Hagrid. He probably knows how to handle himself.

Michael: [laughs] Another few students who were added: Anna Shaffer was added as Romilda Vane. She does not have…

Rosie: She was so good.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Oh my God. She’s the best.

Alison: She just has that good side-look, where she’s like, “Oh, hey, Harry…”

Noah: Yeah.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: “I’m not up to anything weird or unbecoming…”

Michael: Yes. I’m sure she had fun standing in front of a green screen pretending to blow love bubbles everywhere.

Alison: Yeah.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Michael: And she would also remain through Deathly Hallows. You can see her in the battle in Deathly Hallows – Part 2.

Rosie: That’s good.

Michael: And also, yet another actor that we sadly lost: Robert Knox, who played Marcus Belby, the young man who was shoveling down ice cream during the Slug Club.

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: That was extremely tragic.

Kat: It was. That was really sad.

Alison: Yeah. That is sad.

Michael: It was very sad. He was lost in, sadly, a knife fight in England. I believe he was trying to stop it, actually, wasn’t he?

Kat: He was. Yeah, he was… yeah.

Rosie: I think so, yeah.

Michael: Yeah, so another very sad loss. But overall, though, this was a pretty great… even though most of these people did not get meaty, big moments in Half-Blood Prince, they made the most of what little they had, I would certainly say.

Kat and Kristen: Mhm.

Michael: So I made sure to take down lots of points. Listeners, by the way, before we get into these points, feel free to call in with who you thought were the best additions, greatest acting moments; it doesn’t even need to be…

Eric: Get off the line, Noah.

[Everyone laughs]

Noah: Hey, kick me out whenever you need to. I’m free.

Kat: He can stay. Let’s actually take that caller. And she’s on the line. Hello, caller.

Caller: Hello.

Kat: Hello?

Rosie: Hi.

Kat: Hi. What’s your name? Where are you from?

Caller: Hi, this is Stephanie. I’m Yo Rufus On Fire.

Everyone: Oh!

Eric and Michael: Yo Rufus On Fire!

[Everyone laughs]

Caller: Yeah. [laughs]

Michael: Aguamenti.

Caller: Hi. Okay. So one, I have to say I love you all and I absolutely love this movie, too. My question for you guys is… because we’ve all seen this movie so many times, I love looking in the background of scenes.

Alison and Michael: Yes.

Michael: Oh my God.

Caller: Love it. So my question is: Which ones are your favorite background scenes?

Alison: Dean Thomas.

Kristen: Oh, Dean Thomas. Yes.

Alison: Any time Dean Thomas is on screen in the background, he has the best facial expression.

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Alison: I don’t know what it is, but if you just pause – in all the movies – and you just look at Alfie Enoch in the background, he’s hilarious. He just has the best facial expressions all of the time. Yep.

[Kristen laughs]

Michael: Oh my God. I’m so…

Kat: I’m actually going to agree with you, Alison. Mostly because I’m in love with Alfie.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Rosie: Alfie is such a nice human being.

Kat: He really is.

Rosie: You will never meet anyone nicer than Alfie. He’s just… yeah.

Eric: I took a lot of notes about some of the background stuff that I saw that I really appreciated in this film, too. When they’re walking down Knockturn Alley… well, this isn’t really background, but they’re walking down Knockturn Alley and there’s a guys who’s having an animated conversation with the wall.

Alison: Yeah!

Kristen: [laughs] Yes.

Eric: What is that all about? This guy’s having a…

Alison: Yeah.

[Michael laughs]

Eric: He’s like, “Don’t tell. Shh, we’re really… they’re coming. Don’t tell anybody.” And it’s against a wall. I don’t know. Or maybe he’s like, “Do you want to go out on a date sometime?” I forget what he says.

Noah: Oh, I love that.

Kat: I always assumed that somebody cursed him, Eric.

Eric: Or he could just be crazy.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: I suppose.

Eric: But what if he’s not? What if there’s actually a person who’s… maybe somebody else was cursed into being a brick wall. [laughs]

Kat: Oh, God.

Noah: [laughs] Very good.

Kristen: Oh, no.

Eric: It’s the possibilities. It’s just… it’s passerby. They just walk by.

Michael: I’m so glad that Stephanie mentioned that because that’s actually one of the big reasons why I think this film was… you can see the heavy inspiration from Prisoner

Noah: Yeah.

Michael: … because if you watch Prisoner, there is so much going on in every single scene in the background.

Alison: That’s true. Yeah.

Eric: Also, in this film, birds die, too.

Kristen: Too many…

Alison: Oh my gosh. That’s so sad.

Michael: That’s a motif.

Kat: No…

Michael: [laughs] Birds and bugs.

Eric: You say motif. I call it masochism.

[Alison, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Eric: We can meet in the middle. That’s a thing.

Rosie: I’m going to bring it back to the nice things. My favorite background moment is where Ron falls over the back of the sofa when he’s high on the love potion.

Eric and Kristen: Yes!

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kristen: That is the best.

Alison: Yes.

Eric: Yes, you’re right. You’re right. You’re totally right. Oh my God.

Kristen: That whole…

Michael: I think my favorite one that I forgot to mention during the movie watch – because I’ve always loved this – is if you watch the scene in the Three Broomsticks, when Malfoy slinks into the bathroom to give Katie Bell the package.

Alison: Ooh, yeah.

Michael: You can actually also see Leanne is sitting at the table nervously tapping her glass.

Eric: Huh.

Alison: Ah.

Michael: It’s a nice little subtle lead-up to what happens afterward. And again, it’s just very Prisoner of Azkaban to just have so much going on in one frame.

Eric: Oh my God. That Three Broomsticks scene with Slughorn, though…

Alison: It’s so good.

Michael: Oh, it’s the best.

Alison: So good.

Eric: … that was when I wrote my note of, “I remember when it was only one broomstick! Hoo-hoo!”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: “All hands on deck, Granger!”

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Eric: Amazing.

Kat: It’s a great scene.

Rosie: Awesome Hufflepuff says, “My favorite scene in the background are the teachers’ faces during all of the teen drama.”

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Alison, Eric, and Michael: Yes.

[Alison and Eric laugh]

Michael: Alan Rickman rocking that “What is happening?” look.

Kat: Yes.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: “Where am I?”

Michael: “Why am I being forced to watch this?”

Eric: “I just woke up like this.”

[Eric, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Noah: Also…

Kat: Guys, we have another caller on the line.

Rosie: Hello?

Caller: Hello.

Alison: Hello!

Rosie: Hi.

Michael: Hello, hello.

Caller: Hi.

Kat: What’s your name? Where are you from?

Caller: My name is Alyssa. I’m Rose Lumos and I’m in Florida.

Kat: Hello, Rose Lumos.

Rosie: That’s amazing. Rose Lumos, hello.

Caller: Hello.

Rosie: We’ve used so many of your comments. It’s really nice to talk to you.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Caller: Oh, thank you.

Noah: Oh, wow. Throwback.

Kat: Mhm.

Caller: Okay. So I’ve got a question or a conversation-ey thing, but so at the very vital scene at the end when it’s Snape and Dumbledore, instead of Harry being frozen under the Invisibility Cloak, he’s standing there and Snape tells him to be quiet. What’s everyone think about that?

Kat: I hate it.

Michael: It’s beautiful and perfect.

Caller: I like it, too.

Alison: Uhh… I don’t think it works.

Caller: I like how Harry has to trust him. Harry has to trust Snape.

Michael: Yeah.

Caller: And even though he normally doesn’t, he does…

Michael: That’s a huge character moment for Harry.

Rosie: Yes.

Alison: Which is why I think it doesn’t work, is because Harry would not do that. [laughs]

Rosie: Yeah.

Eric: Well, if you think about in the books… Here’s how I get over it: If you think about how many times in the books Dumbledore is like, “You should trust Snape” and he doesn’t or “I trust Snape, and you should stop asking about Snape. Seriously, Harry, stop asking about Snape.” And then you marry that with the fact that they tried to make it big, dramatic in the movie that he doesn’t go upstairs, and he follows Snape’s orders. It’s a big character decision for Harry to be like, “Oh, okay, I’m just going to trust everybody now.” Even though they didn’t really have as much playing up the whole Snape thing in this movie as well, which they could easily have done, I still feel it as a character just going the other way. I don’t know.

Rosie: I think the total lack of any Defense Against the Dark Arts scenes in this film and the complete lack of Snape in this whole movie just makes that scene fall completely flat. It would be fine for having Harry trust Snape and have that be a big thing and have him staying there and that being quite a big thing and then have the rug pulled out from under him, which is as it is in the book.

Eric: Dumbledore asked for Snape, though, two moments before, because Harry is thinking of Pomfrey, and he’s like, “Go get Severus,” and Harry is like, “Oh, uhh, okay.” But I guess maybe then it’s just because…

Rosie: But that’s the point. We get that moment of indecision, and we get that “I don’t really trust him”-ness.

Eric: Maybe it’s because Dumbledore just asked for him that he’s like, “Oh, here he is. Okay, good.” I don’t know.

Rosie: Yeah. There’s just not enough tension, I find.

Alison: And it just doesn’t feel like what would Harry do.

Michael: See, it doesn’t feel what book Harry would do, but I’m okay with movie Harry doing it.

Kat: I agree.

Kristen: Yeah, I agree with you, Michael.

Michael: Because Half-Blood Prince, I think, is actually… rewatching it this time with all of you and the listeners really made me realize Half-Blood Prince is the movie where movie Harry and book Harry really become separate, and I think, as far as technical aspects and plot aspects, having Dan being immobilized by a charm would look idiotic in this scene, and it wouldn’t allow him to react.

Eric: Well, it wouldn’t look like anything. He’s under the Invisibility Cloak, too, in the books.

Michael: Well, then you wouldn’t even be able to see his reaction, which would be… you need that.

Eric: Of course they had to change it.

Michael: Yeah, and I just love the oddly canted camera angle as Snape is telling Harry to be quiet, and it’s very… I still think even though Harry doesn’t… that wouldn’t be what book Harry would do. There’s something just so unnerving about the scene because, for me, I think it really is a great way of doing “What’s going to happen here?” Of course, we as readers know, but I think, especially for people who are unfamiliar, since the Half-Blood Prince reveal doesn’t have the same effect as the book where it’s leaving…

Rosie: Oh, gosh, it’s so rubbish.

Alison: Not at all. It’s so bad.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: This is almost a replacement for that, of giving you a moment to trust Snape and him failing in that trust.

Rosie: It’s still not big enough.

Kat: Yeah, Snape is just so… he’s so missing from this movie.

Rosie: Which is stupid, because the whole movie is named after him.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Well, I don’t know.

Michael: Harry Potter and the Snape.

Eric: You could argue “How important is it that he calls himself the Half-Blood Prince?” It doesn’t even come up in Book 7 ever.

Rosie: So they should…

Alison: That’s true.

Rosie: I guess they can’t rename the movie, but the fact that it’s… the whole book is named Half-Blood Prince for a reason, and the fact that that whole storyline is absent is just so disappointing. I think that’s the main thing that is missing from this movie is any sense of mystery. And I mean, we were saying a week ago…

Eric: But they almost made a conscious decision not to talk about backstory at all in any of the films. I mean, that stems from…

Rosie: Which is impossible to do in this movie, because it’s all backstory.

Eric: Yeah, you can’t not do backstory and try [to] do this book justice, which is what they tried to do.

Kat: It’s exactly what they did, unfortunately.

Michael: Well, okay. So let’s talk about backstory because, of course, that’s one of the biggest complaints about Half-Blood Prince, is the choices that were made. It’s basically… the movie is pitting the memories against the romance. And feelings about the results.

Alison: Ugh!

[Alison, Eric, and Rosie laugh]

Kat: Wow, say it like it is, Alison.

Michael: Okay, Alison. How do you spell that? Let me type that in.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Eric: I can translate for you. It’s something to the effect of clawing my eyes out while wishing that I…

Michael: Okay, I’ll write that. [laughs]

Alison: I guess what it is, is that both of them are important to the storyline, but the fact that we put in these things, and we take out the important memories that are in the overall arching plot of this entire series and the fact that Horcruxes exist and that they need to be destroyed and what they are is basically thrown under the rug for things like, “Let’s burn down the Burrow for no freaking reason.”

Kat: Okay, we’re going to get to the Burrow in a minute.

Michael: Yes. Slow down the Burrow burning.

Eric: The Burrow is a two-minute sequence.

Michael: Don’t open that can of worms up yet.

Eric: I don’t feel like it’s controversial.

Kat: We have a caller, Haley, on the line. Maybe she has an opinion on this?

Caller: Hello?

Kat: Hello.

Caller: Hi.

Alison and Michael: Hi.

Eric: Hello.

Caller: Well, I was just wondering, because I didn’t watch the movie when it first came out – I wasn’t into Harry Potter then – but I recently watched all the trailers, and it seems that it was focused a lot on memories and looking back into the past and so on, and I was just wondering, did you go into the movie expecting it to be about that? Because it’s not about the memories at all.

Rosie: Yep.

Alison: Yes, yes.

Caller: And it’s almost like they just misled everyone because I watched all the trailers, and there was barely anything about anything other than the memories.

Eric: That is the pull of this film, is finding out who Voldemort used to be and getting the tools you need to destroy him, and yeah, I think that’s probably quite accurate about what the trailer does. But I think, because we were into the movies then – and working on MuggleNet – I knew that they hadn’t cast the Gaunts.

Kat: Sad.

Eric: And maybe Hepzibah Smith? They were just like, “There’s no news about that.”

Rosie: They always cut the Hufflepuffs.

Eric: So unless they were keeping it super under wraps, I had some time to basically solidify myself to be like, “Oh, okay, it’s not really going to happen that way.

Noah: Because don’t you think that the Gaunt scene is just a little bit too grotesque to be captured accurately for this movie?

Kat: Oh, they could have done it.

Eric: For this movie, perhaps.

Rosie: It doesn’t have to be that accurate, though. It just needs to be there. It needs to be, in some sense, part of the story. It needs to explain the ring, and it needs to explain the locket, and it needs to explain Merope. None of that is in there, and it just completely ruins the heart and the history of Voldemort’s character, and the whole point of this book is that Harry can understand more about Voldemort and learn more about how he should approach fighting him in the future and learn more about that stuff. And when that’s not there, then it is just…

Eric: I’m going to make a controversial character point here, from analysis, which is that Harry just blunders through destroying the Horcruxes anyway, so why does it even matter setting this stuff up?

[Kristen laughs]

Kat: I mean, that’s a failing of this movie, the fact that Harry blunders so much in the next two.

Eric: No, no, no! I’m saying, well, he blunders in the books too. I mean…

Kat: Less so.

Noah: He’s pretty clever. He’s pretty clever in the books. He blunders, but he’s also clever.

Alison: At least he has some purpose in the book, where he’s like, “Okay, I’m looking for these specific things.” But in the movie, it’s just like, “We are wandering around, and we honestly have… we’re not…. we don’t even have a goal. We’re just going.” And that, I think, is what makes Deathly Hallows – Part 1 so boring to so many people…

Kat: [gasps] No!

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Alison: … is because they’re camping. No, and I love that movie, but to so many people, it’s boring because it’s camping, and in the movie, they have no direction, and so there is none of that tension of, “We should be looking for these things. We should be trying harder. We know what they are, so where are they?” And it just becomes aimless wandering.

Rosie: Ooh! Badger Pride says, “I can see Judi Dench being a good Hepzibah.” I agree. She would be a brilliant Hepzibah.

Kat: Ooh! That would be great.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Although definitely not book Hepzibah.

Noah: This speaks to the larger problem that Hufflepuffs are just largely cut from these movies.

[Eric laughs]

Alison: Yes! There is one Hufflepuff in this movie, and it’s the girl who forgets her rat tail.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Noah: What does that say about Hufflepuffs at large?

Rosie: We are great finders! We don’t forget things.

Eric: Let’s not pretend that Hufflepuffs don’t get the shaft in the books too.

Kat: Wait, is she really the only Hufflepuff in the movie?

Alison: Yeah. I paid attention, yeah.

Michael: Okay, you guys. Newt Scamander is a Hufflepuff. We’ll get our dues.

Alison: Woo!

Kat: You win.

Alison: All the Hufflepuffs.

Eric: Until she retcons, and he has a line about being a Gryffindor.

[Kristen, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Rosie: But I mean, if you look around the Great Hall when they’re all eating… we were talking about it during the movie, the fact that we could see lots of different Gryffindors around [at] different tables, when it’s a bit odd. They shouldn’t really be. They should be at their own House table. And if you look around that scene, everyone is wearing a red hood. They are all Gryffindors!

Kat: Gryffindors rule the world.

Kristen: Shame.

Kat: We have another caller.

Caller: Hello?

Eric: Oh, okay.

Rosie: Hi!

Kat and Kristen: Hello.

Caller: Hi! Hi, wow, I actually got through. That’s really cool.

Kat: You did! Tell us your name and where you’re from.

Caller: Hi, I’m Madison, and I’m from Virginia in the United States, and this is actually my first live show with you guys.

Rosie: Oh, wow. Thank you for joining us!

Kat: Yay! Welcome.

Caller: Thank you. Yeah, I actually was really far behind on Alohomora!, and I spent the last six weeks going through both Order of the Phoenix and Half-Blood Prince just so I could catch up for the seventh book.

Noah: Yeah, binge!

Rosie: Ooh.

Kat: Wow.

Michael: Well done.

Kat: Do you comment on the main site?

Caller: I’m going to. I just set everything up today because this is literally the first time I can actually get everything set up.

Kat: Awesome. Well, we look forward to your amazing username.

Eric: Well, what’s your username? We’ll look out for you.

Caller: Awesome, thank you. All right, so you guys were talking about characters that were included and left out, and I just wanted to bring up Bill and Fleur and how we don’t see their hospital scene and how the movie instead seems to focus more on manufactured love than on actual love.

Rosie: That’s quite interesting. It’s weird that we do see quite a lot of random couples kissing around Hogwarts. It’s very awkward, but I agree that there should be more of the relationships that we have been introduced to. I mean, we get to the wedding scene at the beginning of the next one, and then suddenly it’s like, “Where did that come from? We didn’t even know they were dating,” all of that kind of thing. There’s not really enough lead-up to it. And there’s no battle, so there’s no hospital scene, and Bill is not hurt, but he is, and… yeah.

Noah: It’s also setting up for Book 7, where you get a bit more serious love. And I mean, Harry is a teenager, and this manufactured love is sort of the beginning, and then he matures, and the readers are maturing with Harry. So I think it makes sense that you’d see a growth of how they love as the books progress.

Eric: Also, I mean, I think it were building toward just the notion that Voldemort was conceived under a Love Potion – fake love – that would have been profound. It’s like including one half but not giving the payoff in the story.

Noah: Yeah, we missed that.

Rosie: And I do wonder if it makes people think that these are more rubbish teen movies than they actually are because they’re focused on superficial relationships, whereas the books have got so many different types of love, and that’s such a major theme of the books, is the family and the friendship and the romantic and all the different kinds – unrequited – or all these things kids grow up and learn about and then encounter in their real lives. And it’s such a well-rounded thing in the books, and then it’s just completely absent from the movie, and it makes Harry Potter less than it is.

Noah: That speaks to the film industry. That’s what the film industry does.

Michael: Well, and it’s funny to think that we are complaining about maybe the superficial nature of some of the relationships in the movie because of how much time the movie gives to the romance and loses the memories in turn. I mean, because I think because the Potter movies don’t really focus on romance until about around… Goblet and Half-Blood are probably the two that really highlight.

Rosie: And they do still get it earlier on than the books do. But that’s just what they’re sacrificing that time.

Michael: Yes, especially that there’s a lot of Ron-Hermione shipping in the movies. They love Ron and Hermione in the…

Eric: Well, there’s that whole ending scene too – because David Yates totally ships Harry and Hermione – where Ron is sitting down on the stairs, 50 feet away from them.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Third wheel.

Eric: Is there a third member in this trio? I totally forgot.

[Alison, Kristen, and Rosie laugh]

Alison: Here, we’ll throw in a couple [of] shots of him.

Michael: Rosie, like you mentioned with the amount of other Hogwarts students just randomly making out in the hallways, what I like about those scenes is that they’re meant to juxtapose Malfoy, who is completely alone and not partaking in what’s going on during that year. And I think it’s done… because my favorite shot in the movie is what I’m pretty sure is a composite of actual and digital shots, but it’s the crane dolly shot from the bottom of that tower to the top of the Astronomy Tower. So you go from Harry and Hermione, who are broken hearted, to Ron and Lavender, who are in this not-real love, crazy lust situation…

Kristen: Lust, yeah.

Michael: … and then to Malfoy at the top of the Tower, who is all by himself. I think it’s a great point in the movie to show where all the characters are at. And it’s done very nicely and very subtly. So even though the romance takes over the movie, I think it’s done pretty tastefully, considering how it could have been done. For the most part anyway.

Noah: #Harmony?

[Rosie laughs]

Alison: No!

Michael: I think that question mark comes up a lot more in the next movie [laughs] than this one.

Kat: I believe it does.

[Kristen laughs]

Kat: I think we have another person on the line.

Caller: You do. Hello, guys!

Alison, Kristen, Michael, and Rosie: Hello.

Kat: Hello, Amanda.

Eric: Hi!

Kat: It’s our favorite Bellatrix from down under.

Rosie: Woo-hoo!

Caller: Yep. I was just wondering, because the title of the film is completely redundant this time…

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Caller: … it’s even more of a non-event than the book.

[Michael laughs]

Caller: Would you have been offended if they’d renamed it, and what would you have called it?

Kat: Ooh.

Eric: Pillar of Storgé.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Actually, that probably would have worked really well.

Eric: It’s a good question, because I feel like this movie does not necessarily commit to telling one story, right? You’ve got the balance between… [laughs] Terrance had a funny suggestion.

[Alison laughs]

Eric: You’ve got a balance between the…

Michael: No, Terrance.

Eric: Yeah, I’m going to go with Terrance’s suggestion, which is Harry Potter and the Sepia Tones.

Michael: No.

[Kristen laughs]

Kat: That sounds like an old-timey Diana Ross group.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Because they did gradually remove the color from the Harry Potter films, and this was the first that just looks terrible if your brightness on your screen that you’re viewing it on is not at 100%.

Noah: Well, they were supposed to be getting darker.

Eric: Yeah, not visually.

Michael: Okay, okay. So there’s something very interesting about that. So with the lighting, first of all, everyone, no, this is not sepia you plebes. This is color correction.

Alison: [laughs] On my gosh!

[Eric and Noah laugh]

Noah: What?

Michael: Don’t ever call it “sepia” ever again.

Eric: I think he just called us a dirty word. It’s a good thing…

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: He did.

Eric: Because she didn’t have to hear that.

Michael: If you want to watch sepia, go watch the first few minutes of The Wizard of Oz. That is sepia. This is not sepia; this is color correction.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: Now, the film was color corrected by… his name was Bruno Delbonnel. He was working with Yates at the time. He had done some of the other Harry Potter stuff. But what happened was, the studio wanted a technicolor movie. They wanted it super bright and colorful like the early films.

Eric: Yes!

Michael: But however, Yates wanted to maintain what he called the “European look” of the films. That’s why he… Rosie, maybe you can speak to that.

Rosie: I don’t know. I doubt it. [laughs] I have no idea why that would look European, but yeah, I’d much rather have some color. I guess it’s more… see, if the mystery aspect of it [were] all there, then you could go film [unintelligible], and that would be quite cool. But it’s just, the absence of color just makes it even more boring than it actually is.

Kat: I don’t know. That looks pretty much like Scotland to me.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: A little dark…

Alison: Ooh!

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Kat: … not a lot of color, rainy.

Eric: Excuse me, I’ve been to Scotland.

Alison: Scotland is beautiful. Have you been to Scotland? [laughs]

Kat: I have.

Rosie: Have you at least been to any Scottish tartan? Because there is a lot of color in Scotland. [laughs]

Kat: Yes, there is, but the countryside is green and rain and fog.

[Michael laughs]

Alison: And beautiful.

Rosie: I’ve got the alternate titles for you guys in a moment.

Michael: I’m perhaps not in the majority with this one, but I actually do see the color of the movie.

Kat: I do too.

Michael: I think there’s more than there has been for a while, and what’s interesting to me is that Delbonnel also used a lot of soft lenses. Yates and Delbonnel said that they were inspired by the paintings of Rembrandt for the look that they choose, and to me, I actually feel like there’s a very… not quite like Prisoner, but there’s a very storybook-like distance from reality that this cinematography allows us.

Kat: Yeah, a lot of the scenes use a haze filter or a blurred vignette around them so that only the center is really in focus. A lot of the movie has that on it.

Rosie: Which, again, would be fine if Harry was so sole-minded on his task and that he was completely invested in investigating Draco or completely interested in the Horcruxes or completely interested in finding out who the Half-Blood Prince is.

Kat: Or completely interested in anything.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: Yeah. With such a scattered focus of the film, the cinematography of the film and the storyline don’t match. And I think that’s where the main problem is.

Michael: I almost think the look for this film – maybe with a brighter tone – would have been great for the first two movies. Yeah, it has a very dream-like quality to me.

Kat: It does.

Rosie: I still think Philosopher’s Stone is perfect.

Alison: Yeah, I do too.

Rosie: It’s just a perfect kids’ Christmas movie. And it will always be a perfect kids’ Christmas movie. But I’ve got some alternate titles I should be reading out before I get too far…

Kat: Yeah, go ahead, and then we’ll take another call.

Rosie: So we’ve got Harry Potter and the Half-Snogged Kiss.

[Alison, Eric, and Michael laugh]

Kat: Eric loves that one.

[Eric laughs]

Michael: Eric’s favorite.

Rosie: [laughs] So okay, Harry Potter and the Awkward Ginny Scenes.

[Alison laughs]

Rosie: Harry Potter and the History of Horcruxes. Harry Potter and the Pincers.

[Alison laughs]

Eric: I love that.

Rosie: Harry Potter and the Awkward in General. [laughs]

[Alison, Eric, and Michael laugh]

Alison: That’s perfect.

Rosie: Yeah, there’s a lot of those. Harry Potter and the Prequel of Deathly Hallows.

[Alison, Eric, Kat, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Rosie: Harry Potter and the Unnecessary Plot Holes. Ooh, Harry Potter and the Waste of a Movie.

Kat: Ooh, that’s harsh.

Alison: That one’s a little harsh.

Rosie: Harry Potter and the Wasted Memories. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 0.

[Alison, Eric, and Michael laugh]

Rosie: I quite like Harry Potter and the Return of the Window Fog.

[Alison laughs]

Eric: That was me, by the way.

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: Harry Potter and What are Horcruxes Again?

[Alison laughs]

Kat: Valid.

Rosie: And finally, Harry Potter and the Movie Before Deathly Hallows, which I believe was Kat. [laughs]

Kat: It wasn’t me. It must be another Kat.

Rosie: Wasn’t it? Okay, someone else. Harry Potter and the Constant Black Smoke.

[Alison laughs]

Eric: Draco Malfoy and the Many Disappearing Birds.

[Alison, Eric, and Rosie laugh]

Kat: I like the first one. Read the first one again.

Rosie: It was Harry Potter and the Half-Snogged Kiss.

Kat: Yeah, I think that’s the winner.

Eric: That’s funny.

Michael: Oh yeah, I like that.

Rosie: Maybe we’ll make that the title of the episode. Oh, here I’ve been saving them when I could have been reading them. So Harry Potter and the Awkward Dumbledore. Harry Potter: English Pie. That’s an American Pie reference maybe. Harry Potter and the Scatterbrained Romances. That’s quite good.

Kristen: This one says Harry Potter and the Burning Burrow.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: Oh my gosh!

Michael: Okay, okay, let’s just break it open because…

Kat: No, no, no, wait. Before we get there let’s take another call. Hello.

Caller: Hello?

Alison: Hi.

Caller: Hello.

Michael: Hello.

Kat: What’s your name? Where are you from?

Caller: This is Elle, or [unintelligible] from the forums, and I’m from Canada. Prince Edward Island.

Kat: Hello, hello, thank you for calling in. You have a question, comment, concern?

Caller: I do. I’m going to track it back to when you guys were talking about the different types of love in the movie. One of the most noticeable things for me everytime I watch this movie is the lack of the presence of Sirius’s death at the start.

Kristen: Oh, yes.

Elle: So the book doesn’t portray Harry’s fight through those stages of grief like it does at the start, and there’s no handover of the will. There’s no Dumbledore and Harry discussion in the Weasleys’ shed about Harry’s determination to move on and do the right thing and all that. So I guess there’s a little trace of it in the Burrow scene, but it just seems like Sirius’s death is thrown off to the side. And I understand why it’s not really focused on, because there’s so many other more important things that were dropped out anyway, but do you guys think that affects the movie as a whole? Or that Harry’s film character is different from his book character because of it?

Kat: Oh, boy.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: I was about to say something and then my ads were playing, and all I heard was “Oh, my Fruit Loops.”

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Kat: Distracted, okay.

Eric: Yeah, that’s true, ISeeThestrals on the chat brought up the reference… because that Bellatrix has that line in this film that says, “I killed Sirius Black. Haha! Haha!” And Harry is actually… so maybe it doesn’t take place at the beginning of the film, but when Harry first bursts through the Burrow doors past Tonks, Remus, Molly Weasley just to go and kill Bellatrix, it’s because of the Sirius rage thing, and perhaps that was intentional to have his reaction to Sirius’s death be then, and we were just meant to understand why he pushed through those characters to go and chase after Bellatrix was because that’s sort of his way of dealing with Sirius.

Noah: It is…

Rosie: Why, why…

Noah: … the same…

Rosie: … why…

Noah: … thing.

Rosie: … why, would you ever put that horrible train girl scene in there…

Alison: Yes!

Rosie: … and not have a discussion about the…

Eric: Do you have any idea…

Rosie: … major…

Alison: Yes!

Eric: … how much money they saved…

Rosie: [unintelligible]

Eric: … by not including the Dursleys in this film? It’s ridiculous. [laughs]

Rosie: You don’t need to include the Dursleys, but you could just…

Kristen: Yeah, just [unintelligible] Dumbledore.

Rosie: … easily just…

Alison: You could have had a conversation.

Kristen: Mhm.

Rosie: … start them at the Burrow. If you’ve already got the Burrow set that you’re going to burn later on…

Alison: Argh!

Rosie: … have that conversation…

Alison: Sorry.

Rosie: … in the broom shed at the start of the movie.

Michael: Oh my God, you guys just touched on like seven different things.

Rosie: You don’t need to include a whole…

Eric: I like the beginning of the movie where it’s showing the press…

Michael: Yeah.

Eric: … inside the Ministry…

Kat: Mhm.

Eric: … asking. I like that a lot.

Alison: And…

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: … that part’s fine.

Rosie: That’s fine, but then you lead from that into the discussion. That would be a perfect lead in…

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: … into the scene in the…

Kristen: Mhm.

Rosie: … spider shed.

Eric: Possibly.

Rosie: I don’t like spiders. [laughs]

Eric: For me, Sirius Black’s death was so – I hated it so much in the books that I’m like, “I don’t care that they don’t even focus on it.” – I’m sure it’s important for his character, but I was like “Is he dead? Is he not really dead?” I was still expecting Sirius at the eleventh hour to come back through the veil carrying…

Noah: Oh my goodness!

Eric: … all of the dead awesome wizards ever…

[Alison and Noah laugh]

Eric: … taking down Voldemort that way. I was holding out hope the entire time.

Alison: Like Lord

Noah: [unintelligible]

Alison:of the Rings ghost army?

Eric: Something like that. I just wanted him back and I wasn’t ready to fully… I’m still not ready – ten years later – to accept [laughs] his death.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: We talked about this with the book that we felt that Harry’s grief over Sirius is a bit expedited. We see him go through that at the end of Order of the Phoenix, but really, really fast, in the first chapter or two, and…

Noah: You guys, this is a sexy film. Death isn’t sexy, you know?

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Death…

Alison: Oh my God!

Michael: … doesn’t sell.

Eric: Haven’t…

Michael: Death doesn’t…

Eric: … you ever seen…

Michael: … sell tickets.

Eric:Corpse Bride?

[Kristen and Noah laugh]

Noah: That’s true, that’s true.

Michael: I’m with those who stand up for the opening, because I think that’s enough. Honestly, the scene with Harry and the press focusing him on him, because what’s so great to me about that is I don’t think the discussion is needed, because it flows so perfectly from… That opening scene to me flows so perfectly from one focus of the previous film to the focus of this film, which is the relationship between Harry and Dumbledore. It’s just a perfect bit of the “I killed Sirius Black, Sirius Black is gone, that father figure is lost. Here’s Dumbledore to try.” He’s going to fill in that role while also carrying out the plan, and it’s done without dialogue, and I think it’s very effective, personally. It isn’t always. Put that asterisk on the end. So…

Kristen: Eh.

Noah: Maybe when they Apparated they fused bodies and Harry borrowed some of Dumbledore’s…

Eric:: Stoic?

Noah: … understanding…

Michael: [unintelligible]

Noah: … of death.

Alison: [laughs] Oh my gosh!

Michael: Oh, Noah! I miss you.

[Alison, Eric, Kat, Michael, and Noah laugh]

Eric: Just for your ridiculousness. The sheer…

Noah: It’s been…

Michael: That was absurd.

Noah: … so great being on, though I should probably drop out. At this point.

Michael: Aww!

Kat: Well, thanks Noah!

Rosie: Thank you for joining us, Noah!

Michael: Thank you…

Alison: Thanks, Noah!

Michael: … for visiting Noah.

Noah: No…

Eric: Thanks, buddy.

Noah: … problem. You guys are doing… I love the show.

[Kat laughs]

Noah: Keep it up!

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Long time listener…

Kat: Thanks man, long time listener.

Eric: … first time caller, Noah?

Noah: Desk!Pig forever! Bye!

Kat: Bye.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Desk!Pig? Hey! Who needs Desk!Pig? Now we have Wall!Pig.

Kat: Wall!Pig?

Alison: [laughs] Yeah.

Kat: Okay.

[Michael and Rosie laughs]

Eric: A man in Knockturn Alley…

Michael: Would you talk to the wall?

Eric: … was talking to the Wall!Pig. Thank you…

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Eric: … to the chat room people for that. [unintelligible]

Kat: So we have one more caller here. Hello?

Michael: Okay.

Caller: Hello?

Kat: Hello.

Rosie: Hi!

Michael: Hello.

Caller: Oh wow, I got through!

Kat: You did!

Rosie: You did. Hello.

Kat: Congratulations! You’re the winner!

[Rosie laughs]

Kat: Tell us your name! Where’re you from?

Caller: I’m actually… I’m in Hufflepuff and I’m from Jacksonville in Florida.

Rosie: Nice to meet you. Hufflepuffs are always awesome…

Kat: Yes.

Rosie: … but you are the most awesome by your name.

Kat: Yes.

[Michael laughs]

Caller: It’s actually my first time doing the live movie watch.

Michael: Welcome, welcome to another movie watch at…

Rosie: We hope…

Michael: … Hogwarts.

Rosie: … you enjoyed it?

Caller: Yes, very much. [laughs]

Rosie: Good.

Michael: Yay!

Caller: I just wanted to ask you guys’ opinion about the explosion of the whole battle at the Astronomy Tower.

Michael: Oh.

Caller: That entire battle at the end, which I though was very important to the books, because I thought… that battle really brought the war to the students’ lives…

Rosie: Yeah.

Caller: … it really … for students who are really in between, “I don’t know if I want to fight or not.” This really pushed them to what would be – in the next book – the final war.

Rosie: Yeah. So – in my opinion – that fight scene is vital because it really does show that even Hogwarts isn’t safe, because I know that Dumbledore does die, but for anyone who hasn’t known about the story and known why he’s died, it just seems like, “Oh, these people came and they killed our headmaster and smashed a few cups and then they left again.”

Kristen: Mhm.

Rosie: And without that battle and without the sense of danger… it doesn’t really feel like Hogwarts isn’t very safe. If there had been the fighting, and if there had been more tension throughout the whole scene, the whole film, almost, it would have really said, “Okay, this is the moment where the war is beginning.” Also the last scene that we were discussing during the movie, which doesn’t really feel like a last scene, Harry is completely oblivious about the fact that Hermione and Ron are going to join him, as he is in the book, but it’s more understandable within this scene because they haven’t fought for him. In the book, we’ve had this whole battle where his friends are fighting and the Order is fighting, and Ginny is involved, and all of that. So all of the reasons why Harry has to break up with Ginny, all on his own, are solidfied by the fact that his friends have already been in danger while he has been off on his journey. Without that battle it is like, “Oh right, I have been given this task by Dumbledore. I’ll go off and do it. You guys can stay and study because the school is not going to change.” We needed that fight scene. It needed that little bit of action in this film, just to lift that last few moments, I think.

Kat: Yeah, it did not need to be the full out battle but we did need something more than Bellatrix just defacing property.

Alison: Yes.

[Michael laughs]

Kristen: At least a mention of it.

Alison: Yes. Exactly.

Rosie: It is only mentioned in the book, we never see it, so why can we not have that mention of it in the film?

Kat: Right, Harry only runs by it. That is all we needed.

Alison: Or even just to have the conversation in the hospital wing – that happens after – where everyone says “They broke in and all this happened and then they went up to the Astronomy Tower.” And that would have been fine.

Kat: Yes, that’s true.

Alison: To include it, but also not do the whole thing. Because I do not think they needed the whole thing.

Kristen: But you see them breaking in, coming in…

Michael: Yes, see that…

Kristen: … through the cabinet already.

Alison: Yes.

Michael: Yes, see that is a good point.

Kristen: So you do not need that explained.

Rosie: But it is like… someone in the chat just said that the idea that Greyback was in the castle shows that real sense of danger because he targets children and to have this man who is targeting children within a school full of children…

Eric: Yeah. No, the point is…

Alison: But they do not explain that.

Kat: But we don’t even know that.

Alison: They do not explain that.

Eric: One of them says, I think it is Draco even in the books: “I didn’t know he is going to come along.”

Alison and Kristen: Yeah.

Kat: Yes.

Kristen: Yes, he did say that. I remember that.

Rosie: All of those little lines just ramp up the tension and it just… it’s flat. This whole scene is flat and then Dumbledore dies and I’m like, “Oh, I’m meant to be sad now”, but I have not completely…

Eric: I just have to say, I am going to play this card now. You guys, it is better for all of you than it is for me because I happened to see the screening that they do in Chicago. They did it six months before the movie came out or whatever, when all the special effects weren’t complete and when Harry confronts Snape with Hogwarts in the background – it’s that beautiful scene on the lawn – it was actually just like a tent wall of tarp.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: So when you see Hogwarts I saw a canvas, like a tarp green screen and they were just on some grass somewhere. So there’s no scope. It is just Harry shouting these terrible things to Snape and Snape deflecting it just there in front of this wall. So it is way even less so, whatever it is that doesn’t work for you it is even worse for me because I still see…

Kat: That’s how you remember it, huh?

Eric: It was unbelievable. It is so much better now that they have just added Hogwarts to the back of the scene.

[Alison, Eric, and Rosie laugh]

Rosie: That is why special effects are important.

Kristen: Definitely.

Michael: I’ll throw in the counter points – which was argued by Yates and Heyman – which was that we already are going to have a battle at Hogwarts and we don’t want to be repetitive.

Alison: Which is why you do not need to show the battle, just have them talk about it.

Eric: Well, nobody died.

Alison: And show the destruction.

Eric: Nobody on the good side dies. Bill gets kind of mangled but it’s not really… What is the consequence? If you were to weigh how much it is going to cost to film, a whole sequence where nobody dies.

Rosie: We need to show Ginny in danger. We need to see, we need to see something.

Eric: I will say Ginny was just massively mishandled the entire scene.

Alison: Oh, yes.

Rosie: Yes.

Kat: Yes.

Michael: But I think the other issue there, with having more characters there and doing the battle that way or even acknowledging the battle, is that the movie has already let those characters who participated down. They have nothing to do in the previous parts of the movie so to have them pop up doesn’t really have much effect, especially Bill and Fleur, if they had been there. Lupin and Tonks, maybe. I’m always up for more Lupin and Tonks in the movies up the way they are portrayed in this movie.

Alison: No.

Michael: But I think leaving the audience with the lasting image of Dumbledore falling of the tower and the conflict on the tower and the Dark Mark being erased from the sky is a little more impactful for movie viewers and it is more iconic and gives them something to look at, something big.

Rosie: I think I just like thinking about the light from the sky. I would like the tomb to be shown. We get that image of the tomb so bookending the next film because of Voldemort’s search for the wand. And to know that the wand is in his office and not in the tomb and to not see that tomb as a closing image… All we needed was for Fawkes’ lament, Fawkes to fly over the tomb on the end and that would be enough to show Dumbledore is dead and buried here at Hogwarts and that Fawkes is crying over this death. That would be enough.

Kat: Or even in the last scene when Harry and Hermione are looking out. There’s no reason it could not have been there or something.

Rosie: Exactly.

Eric: I just want to register my astonishment that they even included Fawkes.

Everyone: Yes.

Eric: And I forgot that Fawkes was in this movie until just now when re-watching. I was really impressed by that, actually.

Michael: Yeah, the funeral scene was in very early plans. There is concept art of it if you guys look through the Page To Screen book. It was planned to be in it but I think, like Eric said, probably the cause was the amount of actors who would have had to come back for very little screen time and for very much money. Because they did plan to have everybody come back according to the art that was prepped for that scene. But, we will save the last scene for last. We will come back to that because there is quite a few other things to talk about and let us open the can up now and get it over with because it keeps creeping into every conversation, so let us just say it.

Kristen: The best scene ever.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Oh my God.

Michael: So the Burrow catches on fire.

Alison: I’m trying not to scream.

[Kristen and Rosie laugh]

Michael: Ready, set, go. [laughs]

Alison: Why? Why? Why? [screams] Why?

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Tell us how you really feel, Alison. [laughs]

Alison: Okay, I saw this movie in theaters and I remember in theaters this happened, and I almost started screaming in the middle of the theater. And I was twelve, and I was like, “What is happening? Who made this decision? This is the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen in my entire freaking life. No! No!”

[Kristen laughs]

Michael: Quite possibly the most controversial scene of the Harry Potter films… ever.

Alison: Because the fact that… sorry.

Michael: Go ahead.

Alison: The fact that they put this in… and they can give their excuse of, “We wanted to make the danger more present.” Do other things than adding something that doesn’t happen in the book at all when you’re cutting out so many important things, like the memories and things that are essential to the overarching plot. And it’s just… oh my gosh. Every time I see it, I just get utterly enraged. [laughs]

Rosie: You know how you can make the danger more present? Include the battle at Hogwarts!

[Kristen laughs]

Alison: Exactly. There we go.

Rosie: So bad.

Michael: Now, I don’t think the scene… I defend the scene, but I don’t think it’s the best scene. It goes on too long, especially the chase through the swamp. That is just way too long. But usually, I see the scene as a way of portraying what’s in the book, which is when Harry and Ron and Hermione throughout the chapters notice that their fellow students are departing Hogwarts or they’re hearing news things are going rotten. If that was in the movie, we wouldn’t care because we don’t know any of those characters in the movie. Like, “Oh, something bad happened to Susan Bones.” “Susan Who?”

Eric: Oh, the director’s daughter.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Yes, exactly. And like you guys were saying, perhaps the battle of Hogwarts would portray that, but at the same time, those scenes in the book are suggesting that the threat is outside of Hogwarts. Because we already know the big thing is breaking into Hogwarts; that’s the big thing. We already have that with Bellatrix just wandering in with her smile at the camera. But I think to show that things are going on outside Hogwarts was important, and I think the Burrow is the most recognizable thing we have outside of Hogwarts, next to the Ministry, and the Ministry can’t be affected till later.

Kat: Well, I think it’s the thing we’re most connected emotionally to.

Michael: Yes, absolutely.

Rosie: But we haven’t actually been there for a while, have we?

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: When was the last time we were there, other than this movie?

Michael: Oh, but the Burrow is iconic enough.

Kat: It’s Harry’s home away from home.

Michael: Yeah.

Rosie: For people that have read the books. Anyone who’s only watched the films is going to get really confused again. [laughs]

Eric: Well, they had the scene there in the beginning of the movie, too. There were several scenes there, really.

Rosie: Okay. I missed the beginning of the movie, so I probably forgot.

Eric and Kristen: Oh, yeah.

Eric: No, when Harry arrives and they hear the owl and they all come out on the landing and it’s reminiscent of that really cool shot in Movie 5 that I love so much.

Alison: Well, and then there’s also the fact that then they just don’t ever talk about it again. It doesn’t even come up. It just happens and then that’s it.

Eric and Rosie: Yeah.

Eric: Where are the wizards going to live now?

Alison: Yeah. They’ve rebuilt it for the next movie, but no one mentions it.

[Rosie laughs]

Alison: Ron doesn’t say anything, Ginny doesn’t say anything… nothing.

Eric: Because all you needed to do was Reparo!

[Eric and Kristen laugh]

Michael: Yeah, it’s funny; for all the lead-up that Half-Blood tries to do to Hallows, it’s amazing how much Hallows ignores Half-Blood with the stuff that they do set up.

Alison and Kristen: Mhm.

Michael: But I think that they’re again, too… yes, to be fair, there is an element of, “Ooh, what would look good on film? Burning the Burrow! That would look cool!”

Alison: Ugh.

Michael: “So we’ll do it. And then we’ll just fix it later.”

Kristen: Well, and I just had a friend who… I don’t know why he was my friend, but he had never seen any of the Harry Potter movies before, so…

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: I don’t know why he was your friend, either, Kristen. I think that calls into question your practices of befriending people.

Kristen: These past couple of weeks I’ve been showing him all the movies so he could see what they’re like, and he really enjoyed it. Because after that movie was over, I was like, “Well, the biggest issue that I have with this movie is the burning of the Burrow.” But he was like, “Oh, I thought it fit in nicely; it kind of was showing me that…”

Alison: Whoa.

Kristen: Yeah, so someone who’s never read the books or anything; and first time watching them, he was like, “Well, it really brings into perspective that you aren’t safe anywhere.” He’s like, “I couldn’t believe they could come and get them there,” or something. So from someone who hasn’t read the books and hasn’t seen the movies, and is watching them, apparently they like the scene. I don’t know what’s wrong with him.

Kat: Boo, his opinion doesn’t count.

Kristen: Exactly.

[Alison laughs]

Eric: What’s interesting is that Hogwarts, in the books, is known as one of the safest places. And I think it’s even said in this movie, but Hogwarts is the stuff where shit always goes wrong.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison and Kristen: Yeah.

Eric: Harry is constantly in danger, so maybe it is some kind of really warped, reverse way of showing that there’s danger places elsewhere in the world.

Kristen: And it just follows Harry.

Rosie: But that’s the thing; in all the previous books, the danger has been insidious. It’s been something that’s been creeping or growing or something that’s been coming from inside that becomes more dangerous as the year goes on. This is the first time that we get a direct attack that is immediate, that something is really trying to get in at this particular moment and succeeds. And the fact that we don’t really get that danger to students and it’s only targeted at one person who just… you just push him off the tower? That’s easy. It doesn’t have that sense of danger that it needs.

Alison: Well, and there’s also the fact that… someone in the chat mentioned; we’ve seen Diagon Alley at that point…

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: … we’ve seen that Ollivander has been taken, we’ve seen that Diagon Alley is a mess. You have that whole opening sequence of the Muggle world and the Death Eaters running rampant, so it’s there.

Kristen: Mhm.

Alison: Ugh. Sorry.

Michael: Not enough, not enough. You need more. You need more in the halfway point of your movie. The Burrow burning scene hits around the halfway point. It wouldn’t be enough to do, especially… I don’t know about you guys, but as fun as it was to have the Diagon Alley thing and the Millennium Bridge thing, I was like, “That was quick and boring and nobody died.”

Alison: Well, nobody dies at the Burrow, either.

Michael: No, but I think it’s more affecting with…

Kristen: It gives you something, yeah, in the middle of the film. Because I remember when I first saw it, my reaction was just like yours, Alison. I was so upset, I was so pissed off, and everybody around me didn’t even want to talk to me because I was so mad about it.

Alison: Yeah.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kristen: But now when I see it, I don’t mind it and it’s one of my favorite films, and without it, it would just be horrible.

Rosie: If we didn’t have the attack on the Burrow, we could have had the Gaunt family history bit at that moment and then we would have had action in the fact that we could have seen Morfin get arrested. That would have been quite a struggle; we could have seen it as some little bit of a fight there. We could have even seen the death of Tom Riddle, Sr.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: We could have seen the struggle of Merope, and we could have seen maybe even a hint of an attack to change the book plot slightly, but we could have seen something happen to any of them, really.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: They could have put some action there that would have been interesting.

Kristen: But that’s many little things all happening.

Michael: Yes.

Kristen: This was one direct thing that just happened that you don’t really need any more explanation for it or show it later on or talk about it later on. It is something you can… it happens, and drop it. [laughs]

Michael: Yep. The problem with the memories… I think if they had wanted to do the ones that they cut, they would have had to compact all of those memories into one memory somehow because that’s way too much information and it leaves Harry out of the movie for way too long.

Kat: Well, and I think the problem with those, too, is that they sympathize with Voldemort too much and you don’t want to be confusing the audience by making them sympathize with the villain, basically.

Alison: That’s true.

Kat: You’re supposed to be on Harry’s side.

Michael: Well, and I think that plays, too, Kat, with the fact that Voldemort never physically shows up at the end of the movie anyway…

Kat: Right.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: … and I think to build Voldemort up like that and not have him actually show up in that movie would be a mistake.

Kat: Right. Would have been tough.

Alison: Yeah. We get one shot of Voldemort in this whole movie and it’s with the ring flippy thingy in the office.

Kat: Mhm. And it’s from Order. It’s not even a new shot.

Alison and Michael: Yeah.

Michael: It’s so funny to think… because the movies and the books, they both have gaps in them and they both rely on memory, but the thing that Rowling can do in the books is remind us of things because she has endless amounts of time to do that. It doesn’t matter how much time you have to read the book. The movie doesn’t have the time to constantly remind you. And listeners, too, we are going to be wrapping up pretty soon here so make sure if you do want to call in, you have some more points about Half-Blood Prince. Anything you want to discuss, now is the time. Don’t be shy because Half-Blood Prince [pronounces “Half-Brud Plince” ] is almost over.

Kat: Ah-blah-blah.

[Kristen laughs]

Michael: Ah-blah-blah is almost over, so…

Kat: I think that’s a pretty appropriate title for this movie. The blah-blah-blah.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison, Kristen, and Michael: Ah-blah-blah!

Michael: Because it doesn’t define any particular thing.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison and Kat: Exactly.

Rosie: Harry Potter and the Indistinct Title.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: So I think another thing that we definitely have to touch on is… let’s talk a little more about the specific romances and how they were portrayed and how they play out. I’m going to go ahead and pit Hermione and Ron against Harry and Ginny. Who wins?

Rosie: Hermione and Ron.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Yes.

Eric: I think Harry and Hermione wins.

Michael: Harry and Hermione? [laughs]

Alison: Oh, no.

Eric: It’s a Yates film. Harry and Hermione wins.

[Alison groans]

Rosie: I don’t know. I thought it was really nice… I’m going to go with Harry and Hermione at the moment, but not as a romantic relationship. It was so nice to see their friendship in this film.

Alison and Michael: Yes.

Rosie: The moment where Hermione is crying because of the Ron and Lavender thing, and the birds…

Alison: Yes.

Rosie: … is such a perfect image of the fact that boys and girls can be friends without needing romance!

Eric: Yes. Rosie, I literally wrote in my notes, “Where has this corridor been all my life?”

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: I know.

Alison: Really, though.

Eric: It is the saddest… the window was knocked out, or it was half in the thing, and you just go down some stairs and here’s this corridor which is perfect for there to be birds just fluttering around nonchalantly.

Michael: I said before that this is the big movie where book Harry and movie Harry diverge.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: I love that in this scene because Harry is emotionally restrained in the book and he doesn’t know how to comfort Hermione.

Alison and Rosie: Yeah.

Kat: Right.

Alison: That’s one of my favorite parts, that dialogue where…

Michael: Yeah, I love that Harry actually… because in the books, in his mind he knows that siding with Ron is actually kind of wrong but he does it anyway, and I do like that he gives Hermione some credit here, like, “Oh, yeah, your feelings are valid, too, even though you’re a girl.”

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Alison: And the fact that Hermione comes straight out and says, “You’re my best friend and I know how you feel about Ginny,” and Harry says, “Yeah, it sucks.” The situation is awful.

Rosie: [laughs] It’s so realistic and so just perfectly human and teenagers and friendly.

Alison: Yes.

Rosie: It’s a really gorgeous scene.

Eric: Harry and Hermione in the saddest room ever.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Kat: I said this during the chat, too, and those are my favorite moments from Dan, the ones where he’s just very quietly being himself through Harry.

Alison and Rosie: Yeah.

Kat: When they’re sitting there talking and then Ron and Lavender come in the room. He touches her leg like, “Oh, prepare yourself” like he’s protecting her, and it’s easy to miss. It’s just this quiet little moment that is so human. I really like it. I love those moments.

Rosie: It’s so gorgeous. Oh, yeah, thinking about other background moments I really loved was on the train on the way back to the Burrow, him playing with the armrest.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Rosie: I like that moment.

Michael: Yes, while Lavender is drawing her little picture in her breath frost.

Kristen: Oh, gosh. Yes.

Alison: And it’s just like, “Awkward…”

Rosie: I think… yeah. Dan is really great in this film filling in those well-rounded character traits.

Kat: And that’s funny. That’s something I feel like he’s taken with him after Potter as well. Because if you’ve seen any of his new films, he’s definitely more well rounded than he used to be and very good at filling in the holes.

Michael: Yeah. That scene after Slughorn leaves the Three Broomsticks and Ron is pointing out Hermione’s toothpaste, Dan is just staring determinedly straight ahead. Just…

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Rosie: Ignoring this.

Michael:[as Harry] “Not going to involve myself in this one.”

Alison: “Awkward. We are not going to go there.”

Michael: Which, again, I love… that scene and the scene where Hermione smells the Amortentia are highlights for me. I just love Emma gulping down that butterbeer after talking about snogging Ron.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: It’s amazing that she chugs that. Especially because, as she’s said before in interviews…

Rosie: It’s horrible.

Michael: … the butterbeer apparently wasn’t that good in the movies.

Alison: Uhh.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: So who knows what she’s drinking. But yes, there’s… it’s funny to me that those scenes succeed so well in contrast to Harry and Ginny, who fall badly flat.

Kat: Terrible.

Alison: I cringe. I cringe every time they’re on screen together in this movie, because it’s so bad and awkward. It’s just…

Eric: I insert her line, “Zip me up” into every scene…

[Alison, Kristen, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Eric: She’s in the nightie or whatever. She’s in a bathrobe, and it’s laced shut, and I’m like, “Lace me up, Harry.”

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Eric: And she actually goes and ties his laces. So it’s pretty funny.

Michael: Yes, the scene where Ginny ties Harry’s shoelace was created by Dan and Bonnie because David asked them…

Alison: Oh.

Kat: Terrible.

Alison: So bad.

Michael: And it’s the worst and…

Rosie: That is my favorite scene of theirs in the movie.

[Alison, Eric, and Michael laugh]

Rosie: The only one that’s actually bearable.

Eric: There’s some real sexual tension there.

[Kristen laughs]

Alison: But that kiss in the Room of Requirement.

Rosie: Ooh. Just skip that.

Alison: Who wrote that?

Eric: I can say…

Alison: And who decided that wasn’t a bad idea?

Rosie: That was a worse kiss than Harry and Cho, and then they used it.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: Well, and I pointed this out in that chat that Harry only gets action in the Room of Requirement.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: It’s the only place he kisses in the movie except for the exception of…

Eric: So what is more awkward, though? I didn’t… what is more awkward? The Harry-Ginny kiss or the Voldemort hug in Deathly Hallows – Part 2?

Alison: Oh, the Harry-Ginny kiss.

[Eric laughs]

Rosie: I mean, the Voldemort hug is, at least, funny.

Michael: Yes, the Voldemort hug is awkward in all the right ways.

Alison: Well, these are just… no, no.

Michael: Yeah, I think what’s so odd, too, about that scene… I mean, it’s already clear that they didn’t want to kiss. But what’s funny is that the scene really builds the kiss up, and then it’s the kiss that you give your sweetie before you go off to work the next morning. It’s like, “Bye.” [laughs]

Kristen: Yes, it’s not the first kiss.

Rosie: So awkward.

Alison: They don’t even touch each other except for their lips. [laughs]

Kristen: No. Their hands just go straight down to their sides.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Eric: That was what my first kiss was like.

Kristen: Like a fish.

Eric: I don’t know what you guys have…

Kristen: It’s ridiculous.

Rosie: The only thing good about this kiss is that it makes the Ron-Hermione kiss in the last movie that much better.

Alison: So much better.

Kat: It really does. That’s true.

Kristen: Oh, yeah. Way better.

Alison: Well, and it’s also just… I’m sorry, but Daniel Radcliffe kissing on screen is the most awkward thing ever.

[Rosie laughs]

Alison: It’s just awkward. Just awkward.

Michael: Well, maybe, Alison, he’s just not kissing the right people.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: Oh, but don’t…

Michael: It’s the only problem.

Eric: We were talking about nice Hermione things. I wanted to say… the one line that made me laugh out loud and never, never has before is in the library when they’re talking about the Slug Club, and Harry is like, “You want to go together?” and she’s like, “Why didn’t I think of that?” That was really funny to me this time for some reason.

[Rosie laughs]

Eric: It’s like, “Oh, I should’ve thought… oh, because I asked McLaggen.” But it was something about Emma’s delivery for the first time just made me bust up.

Alison: I love that line.

Michael: And it’s funny because she doesn’t say that in the book. That’s purely a movieism. So yeah, it’s a nice addition.

Kristen: I thought it was funny. I enjoy it.

Michael: No, I think that’s…

Alison: Yeah. I remember seeing that going, “Wait, why didn’t she think of that?” In the book.

Kristen: Yeah, exactly.

Alison: Why? Why did that not happen? [laughs]

Eric: She doesn’t think of Harry that way.

Rosie: And she’s falling into exactly the same trap that the boys did in Goblet of Fire when, “You should have asked me first.”

Michael: Well, and random effects scene… just shoutout for listeners: It’s great if you can look at the pictures of that scene, because how they did it was actually very practical. Emma is actually handing books to people wearing green gloves that are sticking through the shelves.

[Eric, Kat, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: And that’s how they… [laughs] I think the last thing we can maybe end this on, because it’s probably… it is the core of the movie, and let’s close it up…

Kat: No, no. We have to talk about the fish.

Michael: Okay, you want to talk about the fish?

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: Yeah, the fish.

Michael: Okay, let’s talk about the…

Eric: Yeah, the fish is really good.

Michael: Okay, then there’s two things to talk about. So let’s talk about the fish.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: So the fish, yes, is wonderful. I’ve already said my piece about it. Who else wants to talk about how wonderful the fish is?

Alison: It’s probably…

Rosie: We actually get some Marauders-era backstory the movie? That’s amazing.

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Alison: Yes. And yeah, it’s probably one of my favorite additions in the movies, is this story.

Kat: It always felt to me like Jo wrote that part.

Rosie: Yeah. It has heart, and that’s what so much of it has been lacking.

Eric: I just like the idea that Slughorn really eases into the story really well. But again, it talks about basically the magic going with you when you die. Because that was the day that Lily had died that he discovered the fish was no longer a thing, and that works, in a way, the same as Dumbledore’s petrifying spell or whatever on Harry where he knew that it had been released because he knew Dumbledore was dead because he could move again. It’s just that element that I think is so key. That’s why it resonates with me, anyway.

Michael: Yeah, absolutely. I think this is the only scene in the movies – the only scene in the movies – where I read the book version, and I go, “The book version sucks compared to this.” Because Harry just talks it out of Slughorn, and it manages to work, and there’s a lot that’s dependent on Felix Felicis.

Eric: I like that bit in the book.

Michael: I think this is just…

Kat: Yeah, this is just more eloquent.

Alison: Yeah, no, I definitely agree with that.

Michael: I think it’s nice because it gives Slughorn… I think it paints him even better because he gives a really good reason for why he’s giving the memory up. It hits him more personally. I think that’s what… and again, and I said this in the chat, and I do hold to this: It could have been bad, but because it’s Jim Broadbent, he sold it.

Kat: He’s so good.

Michael: He committed fully to that moment, and it does end up coming off very beautiful. And I think the other thing, too, the thing we got to wrap up with because we got to go. We got to run, we got to run. But not as fast as Order of the Phoenix

[Alison, Eric, Kat, and Kristen laugh]

Michael: … is Dumbledore and Harry’s relationship and how it’s depicted in the movie because there was some criticism from a lot of people on the early scenes. Now, of course, as we know, Dumbledore was originally actually supposed to mention to Harry that he had a girlfriend, and that is probably the first instance where Rowling let slip to somebody that Dumbledore was gay. Because they wanted to have him talking about some pretty girl that he used to know in his youth.

Eric: Yeah, it’s hard to tell what scene that would’ve been in because he brings up girls to Harry, like, four times.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: A lot. [laughs]

Alison: Awkward!

Eric: It’s on the train platform, it’s on the Budleigh Babberton or wherever he is when they Disapparate.

Rosie: It’s so unnecessary.

Eric: Again when he asks about Hermione in his office and maybe a fourth time, but it’s bad.

Alison: It’s [an] uncomfortable student-teacher relationship.

Eric: It’s like, “Dude, you’re an old man.”

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Alison: It’s just so uncomfortable.

Rosie: It’s awkward uncle conversations. It’s the kind of thing you have a conversation [about] with the person [whom] you only see once every couple of years at Christmas. It’s not something that your head teacher, even a head teacher with the relationship that Dumbledore and Harry have, would talk about. It’s just so awkward and so awkwardly put in at wrong moments and things as well. The Dumbledore “Oh, young love” moment after Ron says Hermione’s name? That is fine. That’s quite funny. Everything else is just awkward.

Kat: See, those moments don’t bother me because I think that Dumbledore, at this point, is really thinking about his own mortality, and for him, thinking about Harry being happy after he’s gone is something that’s weighing on his mind. It’s never bothered me.

Rosie: But the idea is that Dumbledore… again, it’s not really canon because it’s stuff that Jo has talked about afterward, but the relationship between Dumbledore and Grindelwald is the basis of his romantic life that we know of. And he hasn’t had good relationships with relationships. And for him to be so flippant about young love and all of that stuff, he’s never really been interested in Harry’s feelings. He’s interested in protecting him, but to be pushing him on girls in this way is very odd, and he’s not even really being supportive about it. He’s just kind of forcing you to talk about it in a very awkward way.

Kat: See, I don’t see this pushing on him, and I guess it just doesn’t come across as awkward for me.

Eric: Well, he’s trying to start discussion using that as a technique, and you could’ve just as soon told me about the Gaunts in this five minutes that you wasted making me uncomfortable.

Kat: Five minutes? It was 30 seconds.

Eric: Ah, four times. Two minutes.

Alison: Yeah, if add them all together.

Rosie: It’s Twilight. It’s just too much being focused on teen romantic movies that just isn’t necessary. We want our Harry Potter. We don’t want awkward conversations between Dumbledore and Harry about girls.

Michael: See, I’m with Kat. I’m actually okay with it. And I’m okay with it because, as in the book, Harry acknowledges that he really doesn’t have a relationship with Dumbledore, and I think the movies knew that that was even more of a problem for them, because if there’s barely a relationship in the books, there’s almost no relationship in the movies. And I think they had to… this is the way that they chose to remedy that, is to take Harry and Dumbledore’s conversations to a personal level. And it’s funny because you guys were saying, “Oh, it’s creepy because he’s old and gross. Eww,” but at the same time, it makes me think of, say, Doc Brown and Marty McFly, and elderly…

Rosie: But they do have a personal relationship. Dumbledore and Harry don’t.

Michael: Well, the thing is… that’s what I love about those movies. They never explain where the root of that relationship comes from. You just have to assume that they have one. And I think that’s kind of what’s going on here. We know Dumbledore and Harry at least know each other, and like Kat said, Dumbledore is aware of his mortalilty and also… it’s the debate about how much Dumbledore cares about Harry.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: And I think in the movies he does care more – a lot more. And I think for me it works because it gives Gambon a chance to give Dumbledore something other than being firm. It’s nice to see.

Rosie: He really cares if he put his name in the Goblet of Fire.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: I do love it because it does give Gambon an excuse to soften a little bit. Because he never gets to do that in these movies.

Rosie: Yeah, that’s true.

Michael: And I think he does it well because otherwise, he’s a little too… why that works so well for me is because probably one of my favorite understated moments is the moment when Dumbledore sends Harry to get Snape, and then they hear these footsteps and Dumbledore insists that Harry go downstairs and that he trust him. And I buy it because of the previous interactions. There’s more of an emotional heft to me in that moment than there would have been had Harry and Dumbledore not had those discussions beforehand.

Rosie: Oh, yes.

Michael: That element of caring. Which of course then is all completely poo-pooed on by Deathly Hallows – Part 2 where nobody even remembers that Dumbledore has a backstory.

[Alison, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: But it was a nice thought, so they tried. And I do think that where it ends up really succeeding at its best is the cave scene.

Rosie: The completely unexplained cave.

Alison: [laughs] Yeah.

Michael: The completely unexplained cave.

Alison: It just comes out of nowhere.

Michael: And it’s just like, [as Dumbledore] “Well, there’s a Horcrux in here because it looks scary.”

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Eric: Well, didn’t any of you recognize that young Tom Riddle had a postcard from this cave?

Michael: Oh, I recognized it.

[Eric laughs]

Michael: I think a lot of us do.

Eric: In the memory scene, he’s totally got a postcard hanging…

Alison: Yeah.

Eric: “I went to this cave and all I got was this lousy postcard.”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: It’s one of those weird Easter eggs for the people who read it and are like, “Oh, yeah, that. That should probably be explained.” And then for everybody else, they’re just like, “That’ll be good enough. They might remember seeing that postcard in the previous scene.” And then of course, the last bit is that we end the movie sitting atop the Astronomy Tower, and Ron has no lines.

[Alison and Kristen laugh]

Michael: Because Ron’s moot. [laughs]

Eric: He’s just there, man. He’s a good shoulder to cry on.

Michael: He sure is.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Eric: And the whole…

Michael: And we discussed that a bit in the chat, but I personally think that that is actually – I know some of you feel differently – I actually think that’s one of the stronger endings in the Potter films because it doesn’t end happily. It’s not the studio mandated ending that you usually get, which destroys what would have been so many good movies had they dared to end it unhappily.

Eric: I like the similarity between how Movie 2 – or Deathly Hallows – Part 2 – ends, with them on the broken bridge.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: On the broken bridge, yeah.

Alison: Except for in that one, Ron’s actually a part of this group.

[Kristen and Michael laugh]

Eric: Well, he’s got some character development to do the next two movies.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: And there are some very… admittedly the set-up is very rushed.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: RAB! Let’s open this really delicate locket with this tiny little note on top of the windy Astronomy Tower.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Yeah! That sounds like a good idea.

Michael: That won’t have a horrible ending at all.

Rosie: I think this ending is closest to “Everything’s going to change now, isn’t it?” Which I actually really like as an ending.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: That’s the end of Goblet of Fire, isn’t it? And they walk off.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: If they didn’t do that stupid walk-off to nothing, I’d be okay with that ending.

Rosie: No.

[Michael laughs]

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: The idea that Dumbledore has died and they’re talking about the future, and they don’t seem scared or worried or determined, there’s just… I don’t know. The whole end of this movie feels flat to me.

Alison: Yeah. I can see that they were going for the end of the book where the last line is, “There’s one last golden day with Ron and Hermione.”

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: But I agree, I feel like because they haven’t led up enough to the tension and the changing and how everything is going to start going down in the next movie, it just is like the end of a flat line for the whole thing.

Rosie: Mhm.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah. See, I think like you said, Alison, it’s almost a perfect adaptation of “last golden day of summer,” but it works for me… just knowing that, looking at the previous endings for the other Potter films and knowing that those have to be the studio mandated type of endings that you get. A famous example – listeners, if you don’t know – probably one of the most famous examples for this is The Golden Compass movie, which has a horrible, tragic, terrible ending in the book…

Rosie: Let’s not talk about that movie. [laughs]

Michael: And the movie had the whole ending filmed, and they cut about half an hour because the ending was considered too sad. That’s a common thing that happens in films, and again I’m just surprised that they were able to end Half-Blood on as much of a melancholy note as they did.

Kat: Yeah, I was going to say, it’s more sullen than sad.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah. It’s not the whole… it isn’t like, “let’s all stand in applause for Hagrid,” or “let’s ride a broomstick away into the blurry nothingness.”

Kristen: Ugh!

Eric: Freeze-frame!

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Michael: Freeze-frame, yeah. It’s not that.

Alison: At least they didn’t do that.

Rosie: I still think it would have been perfect if we could’ve had a shot of the tomb in that last shot.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: That’s all we needed, really.

Kat: I agree.

Alison: Yeah, I agree.

Kat: That would have been nice.

Rosie: Never mind.

Michael: You ain’t gonna get your white tomb, ladies.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: You could have had Fawkes flying up from the tomb. He could have been sitting on it, and it would have been so beautiful… [unintelligible] to the sky.

Michael: And once again, just like Eric said, the fact that Fawkes is even there is enough for me, like a trade.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: I know what that symbolizes. I understand that reference. There it goes.

[Alison, Kat, and Kristen laugh]

Alison: I understand that reference.

Michael: [laughs] Good. And as much as… just as Fawkes flies away, so must we… because this episode’s over.

Eric: But not before talking about how awesome Quidditch was in this movie. It was so much cooler and better!

Michael: Oh, you…

Alison: Yes!

Michael: See? It was… you got… Eric’s the one who tells me to wrap it up on Skype, and then he’s…

[Alison, Kristen, and Rosie laugh]

Rosie: Poor thing!

Eric: Oh yeah, I’m a double agent. I’m totally like, “Wrap this up, wrap this up, hurry up,” just so I can have the last word about how cool Quidditch was.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: Okay, so I’m…

Rosie: It ended on a high note. It was good.

Michael: The movies wanted to end it on a high note.

Eric: Yeah. Quidditch was really, really, really good in this movie.

Alison: Yes!

Michael: It’s amazing.

Eric: Don’t know why, it has no reason to be, but it’s good. It’s just…

Kat: We didn’t need it, but it was great.

Alison: I love it, I love it. It’s the only time Ginny in the movie is like book Ginny – when she’s playing Quidditch. That’s it.

Kat: Yeah.

Eric: Chotchkies!

Michael: The funny thing about Quidditch to me is that it’s not a direct adaptation of Half-Blood Quidditch; it’s a mesh of Order of the Phoenix and Half-Blood Quidditch.

Alison and Kat: Yeah.

Michael: And it kind of makes it like, “Sorry we left this out last time.”

[Alison, Eric, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: “This is the one thing we’re going to fix for you.”

[Kristen laughs]

Eric: Again, that was a scene where in the preview there was a big tent behind them…

[Alison, Eric, and Michael laugh]

Eric: A big wall where the Quidditch… but actually, the shocking part of those scenes is you see how they’re able to be in character. It really makes you think a lot of the actors when they’re really not acting on a Quidditch pitch, they’re acting in a field somewhere.

Alison: Yeah.

Eric: But yeah, the beginning of that scene was really awesome.

Michael: It’s a very nice kind of break scene – an action scene that does have relevance to the plot because it does a great job of building up Ron’s character that we haven’t got very much in this movie.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: [laughs] Or in any of the movies, really. Nice touch.

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: And as I mentioned before, a lot of people have said that it’s amazing how quickly this Quidditch scene immediately makes the previous ones out-of-date.

Kat: Mhm.

Rosie: Yeah. [laughs]

Alison: Yeah. Oh, yeah.

Michael: It’s also funny to think that it took that long for the technology… we take that technology for granted, I think, now in our movie-making.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: But that was around the time that technology was ready for Quidditch to look like that.

Alison: Yeah.

Kristen: Mhm.

Michael: If only it could go back and be revised for the previous [films].

Kristen: Yes.

[Alison, Kristen, and Michael laugh]

Michael: It’ll look so good!

Kat: Don’t worry, they’ll remake it in fifty years and it’ll look awesome.

Alison: Yeah.[laughs]

Michael: [laughs] Yeah. Yes, of course.

Alison: They’ll probably actually be flying.

[Alison, Kristen, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: Dan’s going to play Dumbledore, right?

Kat: Sure. Or Sirius, as he said.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: Emma should play Minerva.

Alison: Oh, yeah.

Michael: Oh, yeah. That would be awesome.

Rosie: It’s going to happen. [laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Rosie: Anyway…

Michael: But listeners, as we fly away on our awesome Quidditch brooms because Quidditch is so awesome in this movie…

Rosie: Freeze-frame!

Michael: Freeze-frame!

[Alison, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: Oh no, you ruined it!

[Alison, Kristen, and Michael laugh]

Michael: That is the end – the end of Half-Blood Prince.

Kat: Wow.

Michael: Really… like really this time. Really it’s over.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: I know, we say that it’s the end a lot, but it’s for real this time.

Kristen: Definitely.

Rosie: Close the books, guys.

Kristen: It’s the end tonight.

Alison: We’re not going to talk about it.

Kat: Put away your DVDs.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Kristen: Thank you all for being on the show.

Michael: Yes.

Rosie: Thank you so much.

Kristen: It was amazing, the best.

[Michael laughs]

Kristen: Thanks to those who shared their words and questions for us. It was great to talk with you all and to have everybody in the chat speaking about the movie.

Kat: It’s been a good day.

Kristen: Mhm.

Alison and Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah, you guys… the thoughts on this particular movie were excellent. Lots of people say Prisoner is the most divisive, but I think we might have proved today that Half-Blood is.

[Alison, Kat, and Michael laugh]

Kristen: I think so.

Alison: Well, since we’re done with Half-Blood, it’s time to move onto Deathly Hallows, and we are now scheduling for our Deathly Hallows chapters. Guys, I’m so excited; I love this book. So, this is going to be amazing. So if you want to join us on the show as a guest host, make sure you check out our “Be on the Show” page at If you have a set of basic headphones with a microphone, you are all set. You don’t need any fancy equipment. So join us because it’s going to be great, because I love Deathly Hallows.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: Tell us how you really feel, Alison.

Kat: Yeah. In the meantime if you just want to keep in touch with us, you can find us on Twitter at @AlohomoraMN;; on Tumblr at mnalohomorapodcast. Of course, the phone number you’ve been calling all day: 206-GO-ALBUS – that’s 206-462-5287. You can always leave us an audioBoom. We expect to get lots of these over the next year pretty much.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Kat: It’s free. All you need is an Internet connection and a microphone. Head over to, click the little green button, leave us a message that’s under 60 seconds, and you might hear it on the show.

Rosie: And just seeing a couple of you guys asking in the chat, we will be doing two movie watches for Deathly Hallows, obviously with the two movies.

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: So we have double the fun of a live show next time at the very end of the next book. But just before we get to that, we have got our store, which you guys should go and check out. As usual, we’ve got sweatshirts, long-sleeved T-shirts, tote bags, flip-flops… everything’s on there, so go and check it out. And we’ve also got ringtones that are free and available on our website.

Eric: And of course there is the smartphone app, which is available on this side of the pond and the other. Drinking game, take two sips.

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Prices vary. We talk about that on the latest Alohomora!, by the way.

Alison: It’s on the app. Yep.

Eric: Yes. Okay, so transcripts, bloopers, alternate endings, host vlogs, and more are all available using the smartphone app. Find out more about that on our website.

Michael: Listeners, we want to say goodbye, but we’re ruining our document.

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Eric: There’s apparently some sort of controversy over what order we go in, so I’m just going to say goodbye for everybody here. That’s Michael, that’s Alison, that’s Kristen, that’s Kat, that’s Rosie, and I’m Eric.

Kat: No, I don’t think so!

Eric: No? Well, then stop saying mean things about me in the doc, guys.

Alison: [laughs] I think that’s Terrance because…

Kat: Okay…

Michael: I’d love to start it, but there’s a stupid ad about Kellogg’s playing in my head right now.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Oh, the Fruit Loops! God, okay, [laughs] so I think we got it. We’ll just leave it at that.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: So long, Half-Blood Prince.

[Show music begins]

Michael: I’m Michael Harle.

Alison: I’m Alison Siggard.

Eric: I’m Eric Scull.

Kristen: I’m Kristen Keys.

Kat: I’m Kat Miller.

Rosie: And I’m Rosie Morris. Thank you for listening to Episode 150 of Alohomora!

[Show music continues]

Eric: Oh my gosh, I just hit an ad.

Michael: Yeah, I was just being quiet because there was an ad on and I was like, “This is super loud!”

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: Stupid ads.

Michael: “You get that breakfast cereal, Michael.”

[Everyone laughs]

Eric: Special K Protein. This episode of Alohomora! is brought to you by Special K Protein.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: I mean, it’s not, but if you want to, Special K Protein…

Eric: Satisface el hambre.

Michael: … you give us a call.

Kat: That would be great.

[Prolonged silence]

Kat: He can stay.

Michael: He can always come back.

[Alison laughs]

Eric: Oh, you…

[Prolonged silence]

Alison: Oh.

Kat: [laughs] Sorry, that was my fault! I clicked the wrong button on Skype.

Michael: Oh my God!

[Alison laughs]

Kristen: Yeah, I was like, “What just happened?”

Kat: [laughs] Sorry, that was my fault.

Alison: That was terrifying.

Kristen: “What did I say?” [laughs]

Kat: I was trying to answer a call, and I answered it instead of adding her to it. Sorry, y’all. Okay, so let’s actually take that caller.