Transcript – Episode 188

[“A New Beginning” plays]

Michael Harle: “Oh, the torment bred in the race, the grinding scream of death and the stroke that hits the vein, the hemorrhage none can staunch, the grief, the curse no man can bear. But there is a cure in the house, and not outside it, no, not from others but from them, their bloody strife. We sing to you, dark gods beneath the earth. Now hear, you blissful powers underground – answer the call, send help. Bless the children, give them triumph now.”

[Sound of train whistling]

[Show music begins]

Michael: This is Episode 188 of Alohomora! for April 30, 2016.

[Show music continues]

Michael: Welcome, listeners, to another episode of Alohomora!,’s global reread of the Harry Potter series. I’m sorry; I’m so flustered. This is so weird. I’m Michael Harle! [laughs]

Rosie Morris: I’m Rosie Morris.

Caleb Graves: I’m Caleb Graves.

Kat Miller: I’m Kat Miller.

Alison Siggard: And I’m Alison Siggard. And our guest this week is not really a guest, I guess. I don’t want to say I replaced you, but I guess…

[Michael laughs]

Caleb: Dang.

Alison: … because we can’t replace you, but…

Laura Reilly: Wow, Alison.

Alison: It’s Laura! It’s Laura Reilly, everyone! She’s back!

[Everyone laughs]

Kat, Laura, and Michael: Yay!

Laura: I’m so happy to be here. I’ve missed this so much, and yeah, I’ve just rushed home from work so that I could make it to be able to discuss the epilogue of what was my favorite book, and I would have had so many thoughts to say on. But here we are in this chapter of it and I’m just… yeah, really happy to be back and talk with you guys. And for anyone who doesn’t know who I am – if you didn’t listen from the beginning – I used to host this show with everyone, and Alison did replace me, so…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: … and you’ve done a wonderful job.

[Alison laughs]

Caleb: Yeah, I was actually thinking about that today when I was thinking back, like, “Here we are, the last chapter.” Back in the very first chapter, Laura was actually editing for us, back in the day.

Laura: Yeah. It took me like a thousand hours, compared to how I’m sure the people who do it now are pros at it.

[Rosie laughs]

Laura: So yeah, it’s been a long ride and I’m really glad to be here when we’re wrapping it up! So it sounds good.

Kat: Tell the listeners who do know who you are what you’ve been up to.

Laura: Well, I graduated college.

Michael: Yay! [applauds]

Laura: So I did that. I graduated a long time ago, actually, but I graduated early so I’m actually doing the ceremony in two weeks from now. And the president is speaking at it, so that’s cool. That’s something to look forward to.

Michael and Rosie: Wow.

Laura: Yeah. And then in the meantime, I’ve just been applying to jobs [laughs] and I’ve been bartending in the meantime, and just sort of traveling around because that’s what I like to do, is travel journalism and all that. I just got back from Cuba. So yeah, that’s what I’m up to. Not much.

Michael: That’s nice.

Laura: How about all of you guys?

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: Is that a boring answer?

Michael: Well, Laura, I think the listeners know what we’ve been up to.

Laura: Yes.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: Reading some book.

Michael: Some book that the people have been talking about. I hear the author is up and coming, or something like that.

Alison and Laura: Yeah.

Caleb: Actually, that’s funny you say that because I don’t know… so Laura just gave us an update on where her life is. But because we’re on so frequently, I feel like the listeners have been with us for so long and we don’t ever talk about where our lives are.

[Everyone laughs]

Caleb: I definitely don’t want to take the time to do that right now.

Rosie: We are in very different places than we were when we started.

Caleb: Yeah, right, it’s funny to think about where my life is now versus when “Yertle the Turtle” happened.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Laura: I mean, I started college right when this started, and yeah, it feels like a million years ago, so… oh, the [memories].

Rosie: I graduated two degrees and a teacher training course! That’s true…

Kat: Geez. Way to make us feel inferior, Rosie, geez…

Michael: Wow!

Rosie: [laughs] Sorry. It’s been a big chunk of time.

Alison: Talk about how far we’ve come.

Laura: I feel like I should start playing that graduation song.

Caleb: Oh my God, no…

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: We all need to throw some wizard hats in the air. We are graduating our reread.

Michael: But of course, listeners, we have all come a long way, and so have Harry and his crew. They’ve in fact gone so far as 19 years later, which is the epilogue of Deathly Hallows, which we will be examining today. So make sure to read it. It’s a nice quick read; you could read it right now and we’ll…

Kat: We’ll wait.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Michael: And you’ll be ready for the episode.

Alison: But before we time-travel – because we’re not quite at 19 years later – we’re going to recap comments from our last chapter. And the first one comes from QuasiQuantumQuaffle…

Laura and Michael: Wow.

Alison: … which is quite a great username. [laughs]

Michael: Yeah.

Alison: And they say,

“I have another theory to this…”

… this being why Harry doesn’t feel the Cruciatus Curse.

“As we all know you really have to want the other person to feel pain if you cast a Cruciatus Curse. No doubt Voldemort is able to do that but at this point he believes Harry to be dead. You cannot make a corpse feel pain and I think even Voldemort knew that. So my explanation is: He casted Cruciatus but his heart wasn’t really in it, since he thought that it would have not the typical effect. So it didn’t really work. Harry [gets] just thrown in the air a little bit. I think a similar thing happened when Harry tried to curse Bellatrix in ‘Order of the [Phoenix].'”

Michael: What, Voldemort half-hearting a Cruciatus Curse? I find that hard to believe.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: Sorry, I don’t buy that.

Laura: I think it may be not that he’s half-hearting it, like emotionally, but more just like his head is not in the game because he’s all panicky about not being 100% confident if he’s dead, or anything like that, just being stressed about everything almost…

Michael: See, I felt that Voldemort’s confidence was at its tantamount at that point; he’d reached his peak confidence once Narcissa said that Harry was dead, I would have thought, I guess.

Laura: Yeah, maybe.

Kat: I agree.

Rosie: He’s still not quite sure what’s just happened, though, so he’s gloating over it while kind of papering over the cracks of, “Yes! Look at this, I’m torturing the boy who’s dead because we totally didn’t just fall to the floor accidentally and not quite…”

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: “I totally didn’t faint, what are you talking about?”

Rosie: Exactly. [laughs]

Kat: I do think he’s probably in his head a little bit in that moment, thinking about whatever it was he just experienced.

Rosie: Yeah. It makes logical sense.

Michael: I know you guys debated that last week, and I was… a lot of the listeners were saying they always thought that it was the fact that Harry is the owner of the Elder Wand, and it’s kind of meant to be a clue that the Elder Wand won’t hurt Harry. I didn’t always think that because I was actually more along the lines of thought that Harry was just really good at throwing it off because he seems to be… he’s proven now that he can throw off pretty much every Unforgivable Curse.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: Yeah, that’s true. If you’ve missed one, what’s to say?

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: Our next comment comes from Hufflepuffskein, who says,

“I propose that when Voldemort killed the Horcrux within Harry, he severed the connection with the blood magic that he brought into himself in the graveyard. What if that process was successful because there was already a bit of Voldemort within Harry and so Harry’s blood could more easily connect with Voldemort, because it was already partially familiar. Once the Horcrux connection inside Harry was severed after the ‘Avada Kedavra’ in the forest, so too was the blood connection to Voldemort because there was no longer any familiarity inside Harry to maintain it. In this case, if Voldemort had [immediately] gone up to Harry after they both came to in the forest, I think he wouldn’t be able to touch Harry without the pain like before. The fact that Ron and the others in the crowd are initially affected by Voldemort’s charm, instead of being wholly protected from any of his attempts, may be explained by the fact that their protection is en masse as opposed to the targeted protection of one individual, as in Lily to Harry. It is interesting to consider that it is their willingness to continue to fight, to defy Voldemort and his evil that leads to them breaking the charm, and thus not being affected by Voldemort. Ron is shouting to defend Harry’s name and the crowd is rallying for Neville’s defiance. It is their choice to continue the fight, in the fate of Harry’s apparent demise, combined with Harry’s en masse sacrifice protection that keeps them safe from Voldemort.”

Michael: I like that.

Rosie: Me too.

Alison: I do too.

[Alison, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Alison: Complicated stuff! But I think that’s a pretty good analysis of what’s going on.

Michael: Yeah, the blood protection… it’s funny because, too, it’s called blood magic and of course part of the reason that all works in the case of, say, Lily sacrificing herself for Harry is that Harry has her blood; he’s a blood relative of her. And while we know that pretty much all wizards are distantly related, that’s an element that’s missing from Harry dying for everybody, so that’s a nice way to fill that gap.

Caleb: Yeah, because I wonder if they hadn’t so easily and so willingly chosen to continue to fight and if Voldemort [had] just started cursing them, what would have happened.

Michael: Yeah.

Caleb: I guess this person would answer that they would be cursed because they have to have this extra element. And I think that’s right, Michael, I think the fact that… there has to be something to fill that gap, and maybe this is it.

Michael: Yeah, I’m not sure what it would be, but that makes sense to me, the idea that they keep on fighting too, [and] that there has got to be a sacrifice on, I guess, both sides.

Rosie: I wonder if that would mean that this protection fades after the battle, whereas Lily’s lasted until Harry came of age or whatever. I’ve never quite understood how that charm would work until he came of age in that sense, but if it’s some kind of charm that is protecting them and they have to have a choice to continue it, once the fighting stops does that choice then expire and they’re all at risk again?

Michael: I always thought that this was comparable to the use of Felix Felicis at the end of Half-Blood Prince where it’s not a complete failsafe be-all end-all but it’s enough to get them through in a way that they have a distinct advantage, I guess.

Rosie: Sure, I could see that.

Michael: Yeah. That’s the only thing I could compare it to that we’ve seen so far. And that makes sense because we’ve… as Dumbledore has laid out at King’s Cross that we’re dealing with magic that hasn’t ever been dealt with before, there’s a lot of complicated elements and layers to this, so by this point if J.K. Rowling wants to start making up rules, fine, why not?

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: It’s not going to happen again, anyway, so…

Laura: She’s only got a chapter to go; it doesn’t matter.

Michael: Yeah, cut your losses.

Laura: She’s ready to drop the mic and leave. And then what are you going to do about it?

[Alison laughs]

Caleb: Yeah, fold it all in at the end there.

Michael: And then the giant eagles came…

Rosie: It’s the brilliant ultimate excuse: “This magic is so complicated that even the world doesn’t understand it and that’s allowed.”

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: Ohh. Our last comment – full comment, then, today – comes from ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy, who says… talking about… we’re going back up to the idea of… I should have put these in a different order; I’m sorry. My laptop died. [laughs] The idea of why Harry doesn’t feel Voldemort’s Cruciatus Curse and they say,

“I think this is entirely due to the fact that the Elder Wand will not work properly against its true master. While I like the idea of Harry being able to somehow throw off the curse or just not be able to feel the pain, I think that it is more logical that this is the wand itself recognizing that it is being used against the person to whom it has allegiance, and therefore simply can’t perform the curse as intended.”

Michael: Yeah, narratively to me it makes sense now. This is one of those things that I guess I was just too derpy to get when I first read it…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: … but that makes sense that it’s just an added hint [and] an added confirmation, I guess, that the Elder Wand won’t act against Harry because I guess up until this point, other than casting Avada Kedavra on him, the Elder Wand hasn’t really interacted with Harry at all, so…

Rosie: I guess the only reason why I would believe that would be the idea of the twin cores and the not wanting to damage the holder of its brother wand. But we’ve seen some wands backfire, like Ron’s wand backfiring in Chamber of Secrets all that time ago. If wands could really choose not to hurt their owners, it would seem that Ron’s wand should have been able to own itself… but then I guess it was broken, as well. I don’t know.

Alison: Well, just a couple of overall things: There was a really good conversation going on about mothers and women in Harry Potter and someone brought up this as a great idea for a topic episode.

Michael: Yes.

Alison: So that one’s definitely happening because I have a lot of thoughts and things to say.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: Oh, I think we all do on that.

Alison: But we’re going to have to go back to those for that, so everyone gather all your comments together for that episode because we’re excited to do that one.

Rosie: We should point out as well that if you look at our site now…

Michael: Mhm.

Alison: Yes!

Rosie: … and look at the new navigation bar at the top, we’ve already opened up the “Submit a Topic” form. So please do go and submit any ideas that you have for topic episodes in the future and we will definitely get around to those.

Michael: We read the comments; we know you have topics that you want us to talk about.

Rosie: We know.

[Everyone laughs]

Caleb: So if we don’t see them coming in we will find you.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: And yes, some of them we are very aware that you want, like women in Harry Potter, Snape… you don’t have to submit Snape; that’ll happen at some point. I wouldn’t worry about that, so…

[Alison, Kat, and Michael laugh]

Alison: Unless you want to be on that episode, then maybe submit that you want to be on that episode…

Michael: Yes.

Alison: … but quick shout-out, too, to HowAmIGoingtoTranslatethis, who did a great little analysis of all the little mini-battles that Harry sees around him and who’s fighting who and what that means in wrapping up some themes and plot points and things. So…

Laura: I really love that scene. Just because I didn’t get to talk about anything related to the battles, which is my favorite part of the whole series…

[Alison laughs]

Laura: … and I’m not going to go off and backtrack, but just an acknowledgment to how much I like that scene where Harry is seeing everyone battle and just walking through it and everything. It’s a personal favorite of mine.

Caleb: Agreed.

Rosie: We gave it its love last week. We like it too.

Laura: Good! [laughs]

Alison: So if you want to read great comments like that or join in on the conversation, make sure you head to and go at it to your heart’s desire.

[Michael laughs]

Caleb: Next we are going to take a look at some of your responses to last week’s Question of the Week, which, to remind you what it was…

“Harry thinks at the end of this chapter that he has had ‘enough trouble for a lifetime.’ But were there any troubles that haven’t been resolved by this point? Were there any questions you felt went unanswered by the final confrontation? How do you think they should have been resolved?”

So the first response comes from – I thought this was an appropriate username – PotteringOn…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Caleb: … and the response says,

“The end of Harry’s quest to defeat Voldemort was very satisfying for me at least. Voldemort died having been informed about some of the biggest mistakes that he made in trying to conquer – such as believing Snape was the Master of the Elder Wand when it actually was Draco, and we also gain conclusion on what happens to the Hallows. Even though I appreciate having an epilogue, for Rowling to have closed the book on this chapter would have left me equally content. However I do question whether we would have all wanted more and more details on what happened next. By having the epilogue, even if in many respects, it creates more questions than it answers, at least we are provided with a little further conclusion on the next part of Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s lives.”

And this was… I was actually a little surprised that quite a number of people took up similar responses, that they were pretty satisfied and even would have been happy with the book ending with this chapter.

Michael: I would not have been happy.

Laura: I wouldn’t.

Alison: No, I wouldn’t. I need more.

Laura: I say that…

Caleb: Which is a thing…

Michael: “Harry goes to get a sandwich. The end.” Boo.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: I don’t know. Maybe it’s just because of my feelings about the epilogue that in hindsight I’m like, “Oh, no, I would have been happy with it just ending there,” but if it had just ended there and I didn’t know what the epilogue was and there was just me at that year closing the book, I would have been very unsatisfied. But I think that this is a perfectly fine ending to the book otherwise. I don’t know.

Kat: I think if we didn’t have the epilogue it would have been nice to get some sort of… just something so that you know everything ends up being okay. Maybe a week in the future or a month in the future, six months, a year, Hermione’s graduation from Hogwarts, whatever that looks like… something like that just so we know everything’s okay.

Michael: Oh my God, that would have been great, Hermione’s graduation.

Kat: I know.

Michael: Everybody would have been there for her.

Kat: I know. It would have been fabulous, right?

Michael: Oh, change the ending!

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Caleb: Well, since you mention that, this isn’t the exact thing you suggested but the next response actually incorporates something similar. This comes from FailedAurorNowRunsAQuznos, which is an interesting transition in life.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: That’s hilarious. I love that.

Caleb: The response says,

“I was overall satisfied with the ending and didn’t mind the epilogue. However, I always felt there was more to the story that could’ve been told as a follow up tale. I wanted to actually see Harry and Ginny together because they really had no interactions after Voldemort died. Did Ginny resent Harry at all for leaving her for a year or for always confiding in Ron and Hermione but not her? I wanted to read about Harry going through training, maybe even taking on a case to round up the Death Eaters on the run. While I would have loved another book about this in true narrative form, I would’ve even been happy if Rowling released one long timeline. Tolkien did this very effectively. He included a timeline in an appendix and it at least answered many questions. I find it interesting that Rowling is adding on to the series but doing it 19 years later.”

Michael: Well…

Alison: Cursed Child

Michael: I was going to say, slow your roll!

[Alison laughs]

Michael: It’s not like she’s been sitting around doing nothing all this time. [laughs] There’s plenty of in-between material there and if you’re really not satisfied, there’s plenty of fan-fiction to take up that space in your life. But ehh…

Laura: I don’t know.

Alison: I do agree with seeing Harry and Ginny coming back together though. That would have been nice.

Laura: Yeah. I definitely agree with Alison because I think something like the timeline, for this at least, would have been a bit gratuitous. It reminds me sometimes of TV finales where things are so not wrapped up that you get angry. But then other times I’ve seen shows that really go character by character and say everything that happened to them in the future, and it just seems like too much. It just takes away a nice narrative conclusion, so it just seems like a list of facts at that point. But [the] big problem for me was that Harry didn’t talk to Ginny. Even if it was as small as them going on holding hands, anything like that that was a meet-up before just so that the epilogue wasn’t…

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: Obviously you knew Harry was going to end up with Ginny, but it is jarring in the sense of they haven’t spoken to each other in a while and now they’re married with children.

Michael: [as Thor] Another!

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: And I think that’s why there has been such a big push for wanting a Book 8 for so long that without the epilogue it would have felt premature. We have fought with these characters for so long to find that other side of this great war to find out what happens and what life will be like after Voldemort, but then what we do get in the epilogue is also not quite enough. We get this very small snapshot into their life, but we don’t really get an idea of what that life is like. We know what their children are like from very small interactions of their personality and character. We know that they are still kind of… Ron is making jokes about driving and they both kind of take a moment to look at the fact that Draco is there and he’s got a son and that kind of thing. But we don’t really feel we know enough about what Harry’s life is like after this war. We know that his scar hasn’t hurt [and] we obviously will get into all of this when we talk about the epilogue, but there’s just something that’s not quite enough in this epilogue. We want a little bit more.

Michael: I think part of that comes from just how truly real Rowling made these characters.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: There’s a difference between Harry Potter and many other series where you do have… no matter how much or little information you get on the characters, that’s enough and you close the book and you’re like, “all right.” And maybe it lingers with you after a while, but overall you’re okay with what you were given. But I think by the point where the fandom had figured out that there were actual dates that you could apply to Harry Potter

Rosie: Yeah. [laughs]

Michael: … and that Pottermore continued to encourage the idea, especially once we get around to 2014 and we’re getting a live tweeting from the Olympics…

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: … not the Olympics, the Quidditch World Cup – that’s happening supposedly in real time. This idea that they really do live and breathe somewhere just beyond where we can see makes us want to know everything about them.

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: Yeah.

Caleb: And I think that’s something we don’t think about much, right? So, obviously Harry Potter… what Jo created is incredibly unique and may never be replicated again, and within that just our demands for more for this series is so much more…

Alison: Oh, so much.

Caleb: … and so unique compared to… I mean, people have different feelings about different fandoms…

Michael: Mhm.

Caleb: … but I think arguably Harry Potter‘s literature is certainly one of the top ones. Just how much we demand of Jo and what we want from her…

Laura: Yeah.

[Alison laughs]

Caleb: And I think, Michael, it really stems out of what you said. It’s like these characters for a lot of us uniquely are just so much more real, and we just crave so much more from them.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah, I think it really was in 2014 [where] everybody was like, “Oh, how are they doing? What’s going on with the family?”

[Alison laughs]

Michael: They’re people who we want to keep in touch with [and] want to see what they’re up to. Just like when Laura comes on the show and she’s like, “How are you guys doing?”

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: Yeah, but it’s such a… it’s kind of… I don’t know. I find it almost entitled a bit that these fans feel that they – and myself included, whatever…

[Michael laughs]

Laura: … feel like they have the right almost to be like, “no, we need every [bit of] information,” like “you can’t just leave us hanging [about] what happened at every step of the way.” And for a large part, that’s why fanfiction exists [because] people just need to fill in the blanks because it’s so interesting to us. But I feel like most authors, like Caleb said, don’t get this much demand and have the right to end their story on a narrative that poetically makes sense, and not just listing all of these facts like years and years after just for everyone to get their fix. It’s kind of crazy.

[Alison laughs]

Rosie: But I think it’s partly that Jo had already told us that she had so much more information.

Laura and Michael: Yeah.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: She told us about all of her notebooks and now we want to know… yeah.

Kat: Well, I was going to say the encyclopedia… I mean, she said she was writing it and she was working on it and then stopped…

Alison: Someday…

Laura: Never mind. She deserves it then.

Kat: … and now it’s gone and now it’s Pottermore… yeah.

Alison: I have hope that it will come out someday.

Kat: It won’t.

Michael: For the chapter discussion I combed through almost every interview I could get my hands on right after Hallows, and in almost every one she was like, “The Scottish Book and the encyclopedia, it’s coming. I have all of this in my boxes on paper, some napkins somewhere.”

[Alison and Caleb laugh]

Michael: So yeah, I think that’s definitely part of it too.

Laura: [She] teased us.

Michael: She put all her cards on the table because she was so excited to be done with Harry Potter and be able to talk about it that she let slip that she had everything with her that we could all possibly want to know.

Laura: And slowly commercialize until we’re all dead.

Alison: Yeah.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: And then I think part of it too is Twitter because now that anyone can basically ask her any question and she can pop up and answer it…

Laura: I know, it’s stressful.

Alison: … we just want more and more and more.

Laura: I always feel like I’m missing something, so I’m staying glued to her Twitter all day.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Well, yeah. When somebody’s like, “What are the Hufflepuff gems?” [and Rowling answers] “Oh, diamonds,” it’s like we could really ask her anything then if she knows this kind of stuff.

[Alison, Caleb, and Michael laugh]

Alison: She knows Myrtle’s middle name, like what?!

Michael: Yeah… no, it’s ridiculous. [laughs]

Caleb: So on the note of how much we want for all these many characters, this next response from TheHeadgirl really captures the breadth of what we could demand.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Caleb: It touches on the Harry and Ginny aspect that the previous response did but also much more. So I thought it would be a good one to read and then maybe at the end, we could pick out one that we would have wanted the most. So TheHeadgirl says,

“I really, really wish we had seen the aftermath – just the day after [and] what happens next. How do Ginny and Harry re-introduce themselves to the other after Ginny saw Harry die, and then save the wizarding world? What does Flitwick think when he goes into his classroom and finds his books all burnt, his desk cracked in half, and blood spattered on the walls?”…

Michael: Damn!

[Alison laughs]

Caleb: [continues]

“Does George sleep at all that first night…?”

Alison: Nope. Oh, gosh!

Caleb: [continues]

“… [or] does he wait by the window until the sun comes up and no one else comes home?”

Alison: Wow, that was unnecessary.

Michael: I think we know the answer to that one.

[Alison laughs]

Caleb: [continues]

“How does McGonagall feel when the headmaster’s office opens for her without hesitation, and she looks at the rolls for the students enrolled for the next year, but so many names are struck out? When Kingsley takes over as Minister, does he have any time to grieve for the friends he’s lost, or does he go straight into clean-up mode? I also wish we could have seen the next September 1. How many students can see the thestrals now? Can you get any learning done in a classroom where you know someone died? We know that Slytherin isn’t dissolved, but how well do the kids integrate back in with the other three Houses, or are they just ostracized? I love happy endings and Harry more than deserved his 2.5 kids and white picket fence…”

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Caleb: [continues]

“… but to go from a war zone to an idyllic storybook conclusion is jarring, leaving me wanting to know more about the interim. Luckily, that’s why we have fanfic.”

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: I love the dramatic pauses you took between everything as it got darker and darker.

Alison: [laughs] Yeah.

Caleb: So that’s funny you say that because I didn’t plan that. But as I started to read it out loud versus just reading it earlier, I realized how heavy it was.

Laura: Just letting the silence hang.

Caleb: Yeah.

[Alison laughs]

Laura: No, all of that… to me, I think the most interesting thing this person said was that what’s jarring is going from a war zone into totally great instantly and just so casual. And that was the thing that struck me the hardest of why I think the epilogue was jarring, because I’ve been crying my eyes out and then the next page [is] talking about two kids making out for like three pages.

Rosie: La-la-la-la-la…

[Alison laughs]

Laura: Yeah, but I don’t know if there was room in the book for this. There’s too much to be said and it has to conclude somewhere, and the thing with wars like this is there isn’t just a one-day conclusion. The ramifications of this are going to go on for a really long time.

Rosie: Yeah.

Laura: And I’ve thought far too much about what happens to George because he’s my favorite character, and I know everything about his life. So, yeah, that’s a dark place for me.

Rosie: Well, maybe that is the biggest issue: that 19 years is too many years later.

Laura: Hmm, yeah.

Rosie: It’s going to be a perfect starting point for Cursed Child, and that new story to begin, but as an ending point to this story that we’ve been following, there’s too much time has passed.

Laura: It’s too much.

Rosie: There’s too much of that story to fill in that gap. Something like Pride and Prejudice, the last chapter of that where we get to know what happened to those characters, it covers a year after Lizzy and Darcy get married. So, we get to know what Lizzy’s family have been like over that year when things have settled down and everything’s come to some kind of normality. And it’s that normality that we need at the end, but it needs to have some link to what we’ve just left.

Laura: Yeah, that’s exactly it.

Rosie: 19 years is just too drastic.

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: That’s exactly what I’m saying because it is… after 20 years, essentially, has passed, everyone is emotionally over it. Obviously, they have these lingering thoughts and things like Fred being dead and all these things, but 20 years, you moved on, and matured and gotten on with your life. That might not have happened a year later and stuff like that. So, I don’t know.

Alison: But I think the way she does it, though, is nice. I think she does – like a lot of people were saying before in the comments that they would have been happy if it had just ended on that last numbered chapter. I think she wraps that up okay, but now, she’s just giving us this little offering of hope that, “Look: Harry does eventually get things right.” This person we’ve really come to love. And I actually – with that jarring feeling – I just read the UK edition because that’s the one I have now is the paperback one, but in that one, there’s a separate page that says, “19 years later.”

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: Whereas, I think in the US edition, it just is right like the beginning of a new chapter, unless I’m remembering that wrong.

Kat: No, it’s a separate page. It’s a separate page.

Michael: Yeah, there is a separate page.

Kat: Yes.

Alison: Okay, I don’t remember that.

Kat: Yeah. You’re definitely meant to take a breath and to pause for a minute.

Alison: But who did?

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Laura: So, yeah. No, I think that that’s really the difficult thing is just how the chapter ends. It ends on a hopeful note that was needed and it says, “Oh, I’ve had enough trouble for a lifetime.” And you know, by that thing, you should know that it’s good from here on out because if it wasn’t, we’d know almost. And it just seemed almost gratuitous to be like, “No, it was really fine and see how casual we are?” But I don’t know, I guess we’re going…

Rosie: Especially if you’re going to make comments about struggles that they then have. We want to know those…

Kat: We’re not on the epilogue yet. Save it! Save it!

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Michael: Well, I was going to say…

Alison: We’ll get there.

Michael: … what you guys said was, I think, what broke it down really well for me then, helped me realize this because I’m one of those weirdos – I don’t know if there are other people who feel this way – I don’t much care for the way the epilogue is written but I actually really like the movie version of the epilogue.

Laura: That’s me too. [laughs]

Michael: And I think the way you guys said it clicked for me and made me realize, I think the reason I like the epilogue in the movie is, in a way – Laura like you were saying – this dramatic jump in tone but, in the movie, there’s still a sense that Harry is taking a few deep relieving breaths the way that Dan plays it, and I think the other nice thing is that the movie eliminates all the fanfic-y feeling stuff. There [are] no names mentioned except for Albus Severus and we see the kids very briefly but the focus is on the adults.

Rosie: Yeah, definitely.

Michael: I think it carries it over to that 19 years a little more smoothly because, to me, in a way, like you were saying, Caleb, with this comment, “pick what you’d want out of this,” and, in a way, what I would have wanted was something more akin to the movie epilogue where it’s just Harry and Albus and nobody else because I think that’s the core of it for me.

Laura: Yeah, I think I agree. There [are] too [many] things happening and that’s what makes it feel fanfic-y, but I think exactly… Yeah, and the John Williams helps. [laughs]

Alison: Oh, I disagree.

Michael: Yes, John Williams helps.

[Laura laughs]

Alison: Yeah. [laughs] See, I disagree with that because I love the epilogue, but we’ll get there.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: Oh, yeah, we will, and in fine, fine, minute detail.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Caleb: And we will finish with the very important response that comes with a question from WitherWings who asks,

“What has become of the flying Ford Anglia?”

[Alison laughs]

Laura: It’s king of the forest.

Michael: What indeed? What indeed?

[Alison laughs]

Rosie: Well, it’s crashed through the roof of Leavesden Studios of course.

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: You just need to go and have a look at it.

[Alison and Caleb laugh]

Michael: I think the question’s worth asking because Rowling initially promised it was going to appear in Book 7 and it didn’t so…

Alison: Yes. Someone get on Twitter! Tweet her!

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kat: One of the only things that didn’t appear in Book 7.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: Got caught in a spider’s web somewhere.

Michael: Yeah, it’s traveling around in the forest.

Alison: Oh, gosh!

Michael: Doing its thing, I’m sure.

Alison: The spiders are joy riding in it.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Can you imagine future students who discover that in the Forbidden Forest? [laughs]

Kat: That would be awesome.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Alison: Oh my gosh! [laughs]Michael: “We got a car!”

[Kat and Michael laugh]

Rosie: That’s how they all prepare for their Muggle driving tests.

Michael: Yeah.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: It becomes a class at Hogwarts taught by Hagrid.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Alison: Muggle Driving.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Oh, God.

Caleb: So, those are just a handful of the really great responses to last week’s Question of the Week. You can head over to our main site and read more of the discussions going on.

Rosie: And, of course, we have to thank our fantastic Patreon sponsor. This episode is sponsored by Lyle Hokanson over on Patreon.

Michael: Yay!

Rosie: Thank you so much for being a sponsor of the show, especially this fantastic last episode of the last book where it’s going to be one of those ones that goes down in history. So, thank you so much. You guys can become a sponsor of the show for as little as one dollar a month as we continue to explore the world of Harry Potter and its various themes and issues. We will continue to release exclusive tidbits for our sponsors over on Patreon as well. We’ve got some special extra discussions and things that we cut out of the longer episodes. So, please do and go check them out over on

Kat: Thank you, Lyle!

Alison: Yay!

Caleb: Lyle, thank you!

Michael: And now, here we go. Let’s strap on our Time-Turners and jump to “19 Years Later.

[Chapter intro begins]

Harry: Epilogue.

[Sounds of a train whistle and chatter]

Trio: “19 Years Later.”

[Chapter intro ends]

Michael: Oh my God. This is crazy.

[Kat laughs]

Michael: Where are we doing? Okay. [laughs]

Kat: I know this is insane. Holy crap.

Alison: I know! I… ugh.

Michael: I apologize if you see any typos or if there’s a moment where I go, “blah be de blah” because I was up until four in the morning finding all of this stuff. So…

Alison: Oh my gosh!

Laura: I did see you changed your profile picture on Facebook at a ridiculously late hour.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: I was like, “What’s he doing?”

Michael: That was why. [laughs] That was why. [laughs] All right. It’s September 1st of 2017 on Platform 9 3/4. Harry is revealed to have two sons as well as a not-yet-Hogwarts-ready daughter with his now-wife Ginny.

Rosie: Called Rosie.

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: Sorry.

Michael: Ron and Hermione are also married with two children of their own, and Teddy Lupin is confirmed to practically be a part of the family, spotted sharing a goodbye kiss with Bill and Fleur’s eldest. Not much has changed otherwise. Malfoy escorts his identical son, Scorpius, with little more than a nod to the trio. Ron still approaches everything with good humor, Hermione remains the voice of reason and Harry continues his role as a mentor, reminding his youngest son, during his moment of hesitation, that it is our choices that show who we truly are. As the Hogwarts Express departs carrying a new generation of students to unknown adventures, Harry touches his scar, which is now nothing more than that. And as we turn the final page, both Harry and J.K. Rowling assure us that, “All is, indeed, well.” [exhales] Okay.

Rosie: Done.

Alison: I’m sitting here grinning like an idiot.

Laura: So am I.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: This makes me so happy!

Michael: All right!

Alison: So many feelings! [laughs]

Michael: So, here comes all the happy! So much happy! Happy, happy, happy! [laughs] First of all, let’s start with the Potter family. Let’s just go right to the heart of it. They have three children. Their names are: James Sirius, Albus Severus and Lily Luna. Just…

Rosie: At which point you want to give them a baby name book.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: Okay, so I’m okay with Lily Luna. I think that that’s adorable and very sweet.

Rosie: Lily Luna is fine.

Alison: Also, James Sirius. I love James Sirius.

Kat: And James Sirius is… I get those.

Laura: They were best friends.

Kat: I guess.

Laura: It makes sense.

Alison: Yeah, they’re both very important to Harry.

Kat: And I don’t want to have a problem with Albus Severus, but I can’t help but…

Alison: I do.

Kat: … have a problem with Albus Severus.

[Kat and Rosie laugh]

Alison: I think everyone has a problem with that. [laughs]

Michael: He names his son after an old man, and a greasy, nasty, middle-aged guy.

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Michael: The imagery just doesn’t really [laughs] evoke a young person, I guess.

Laura: It’s also just Albus isn’t really the nicest of names. James, Lily…

[Michael laughs]

Laura: … I guess. yeah. They, obviously, they clearly call him Al, but even Al is… it’s such an old… it’s like “Al.”

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: Well, exactly.

Rosie: And he could’ve picked any one of his names. He had a lot of them…

Laura: Yeah, Brian.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: … Albus, Wulfric, Percival, Brian, any of them would have been good.

Alison: You could have called him Brian!

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: That would have been fine.

Kat: Brian Severus. Even that sounds better.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: Wulfric Potter. That would be amazing!

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: And, interestingly, with these names, a lot of the fandom has put forth the question: Did Ginny have any contribution to any of these names?

[Alison laughs]

Alison: I personally feel that Ginny was all for Luna. [laughs]

Michael: Yeah.

Alison: I feel like Ginny was like, “Back up, Harry. This is my name.”

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: “I’m going to name it after my good friend for once.” [laughs] But…

Michael: Yeah.

Rosie: Just considering how close she was to the twins, why would not one of them be called George?

Laura: Well, because I think…

Kat: Well, okay. So, because I think…

Caleb: Because George and Angelina had named their kid…

Alison, Kat, and Laura: Fred.

Caleb: … after Fred.

Laura: Yeah.

Kat: Yeah, and I think he gets claim on the name over Ginny, and that’s part…

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: … of the thing, is that Ginny had a lot of acquaintances in the liked eye, but really the only really big death for her was her brother. So, I feel like Harry gets to trump her because he was like, “Yeah, this person and this person and this person…”

[Rosie sighs]

Kat: “… and this person and this person.”

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Is that why they have so many kids, because Harry was just like, “Oh, you can name the next one.”

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Kat: Yeah, probably.

Michael: And then he just kept saying that.

Laura: Yeah, but at the same time, does everyone have to be named after a dead person?

Kat: No.

Alison: After someone who dies? [laughs]

Laura: There [are] other ways of honoring someone or something.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: I don’t know. It seems just a bit much which makes, also, Ron and Hermione’s kids seem a little superficial [laughs] because it’s like…

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: Yay, Rosie!

Laura: … everyone’s named after everyone except for them.

[Michael laughs]

Caleb: Honestly, the thing that surprised me more than the boys’ names were the girls’ names. So, since Harry obviously gets Lily from his mother, the fact that they don’t use Molly also, especially…

Alison: Well, Percy has a daughter named Molly.

Caleb: … when Molly goes to… Say that again?

Rosie: Yeah, to reuse a name you must be dead.

Laura: But no, someone else…

Caleb: [laughs] Luna’s not dead.

Rosie: Well, no, and why would you use Luna? Just because she’s different, just to connect to her in somehow.

Laura: But Percy’s kid’s name is Molly.

Alison: Percy has a kid named Molly, yeah.

Caleb: Oh, okay.

Alison: So, maybe they just got there too late. [laughs] All the other Weasley kids have taken all the names. [laughs]

Rosie: Did they all procreate in order?

Michael: That’s what I was going to ask. Did they sit down at a table and be like, “Okay, you can have this name, and you can have this name.”

Alison: Yes.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: Also, it’s just… I agree. If they’re naming all of their parents and guardians, and Ginny was clearly close with her mother, I get that someone else is named Molly, but as a middle name. Eeryone in my family…

Caleb: Exactly.

Laura: … has the same middle name. There [are] like…

Michael: Mhm.

Laura: … four Philips. [laughs]

Alison: That’s true, I guess mine does too.

Laura: So, it’s not like a middle name is like, “Oh, no. Because your cousin or whatever has that name also.” I don’t know, it seems a bit silly, but whatever.

Alison: Well, it’s a nice thing to remind us that I feel like Luna has become part of their little friend family. I think that’s nice.

Rosie: Yeah, I think part of what bothers me is that we know all of their middle names.

Michael: James Neville Potter.

Caleb: Yeah, we don’t a Neville in there. So…

Laura: Honestly, I think Luna’s name is there is because Luna’s not in the epilogue and never mentioned in the epilogue.

[Caleb and Michael laugh]

Caleb: That’s so true.

Laura: It’s just a shout-out.

Rosie: Probably.

Kat: I also have a feeling, from what we know about her story, that she went off and almost never returned. Like one of those people…

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: … that was your friend in high school and you guys were super close, and it was awesome, and then they just depart.

Laura: So, then you name your child after her.

[Alison, Laura, and Michael laugh]

Kat: Well, if it was somebody that you went through something like that maybe you would do that, but I feel like maybe they never see each other again.

Laura: I think she’s like the cool aunt.

Alison: I don’t know if they… Yeah, I was going to say, I don’t think they never see each other again but maybe they just don’t see her very often.

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: I don’t know. She’s traveling the world, right? So…

Alison: World, yeah.

Michael: Yes, well, we’ll get to Luna, but to stay with the Potters for just a moment, there’s actually… James Sirius seems to have been the one who has lived up to his name the most so far. As Rowling confirmed, James sneaked the Marauder’s Map out of his father’s desk one day, so James is now in possession of the Marauder’s Map. And as we know thanks to Twitter, James began his time at Hogwarts on September 1st of 2015 and he was, indeed, sorted into Gryffindor. So, he is in the process right now of completing his first year at Hogwarts.

Kat: I like that kid.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: I wrote a fanfic about that kid. [laughs]

Michael: I do have to…

Alison: Sorry.

Michael: … on a personal note – and I know that there was a reason given by Rowling – but, for me, where was the Lupin love? No Lupin love…

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: … in any of these names, but, again, dishing out the names, Rowling said, “Harry left Remus’s name for Teddy to use for his own son.” She insisted that in 2015. Were there any other names, other people? I know we said Molly, Neville.

Laura: Yeah.

Michael: Were there any other people that you guys think?

Alison: Hagrid.

Michael: Hagrid.

Laura: Oh, yeah. Okay, first of all, yes. Hagrid was way more important, I think, to Harry…

Alison: Arthur.

Laura: … than Dumbledore…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: Especially Snape. But also, Arthur. Arthur would’ve really served as a father figure to him as well…

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: … and it’s also Ginny’s actual father, and, as far as I can remember, no one else is named after Arthur.

Michael: Nope.

Laura: Right.

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: So, that seems like a big gap.

Rosie: And if you’re going to do alliterative Lily Luna, you could do Arthur Albus. [laughs]

Michael: That would’ve been nice.

Alison: I like that a lot.

Laura: And Arthur’s a normal name. So, yay.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Michael: That’s a beautiful name. All right, Rowling.

Kat: I would’ve liked so see one of them name their kids after Dobby, just personally.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: Or Kreacher.

Alison: They named an owl after them…

Kat: Hedwig.

Alison: … or something, I don’t know. [laughs]

Michael: Oh, you know they had another snowy owl named Hedwig too. You know that.

Alison: Yeah, I hope so.

Laura: They have a puppy named Dobby.

[Michael laughs]

Alison: They probably do.

Kat: I hope so.

Alison: And another one named Padfoot.

Kat: Aww.

Rosie: I think it’s just partly that there are so many characters in Harry Potter and Jo has used so many names.

[Alison, Kat, and Michael laugh]

Rosie: You’ve got to start repeating them. There’s nothing new.

Laura: What about a daughter named Ruby, though, for Rubeus for Hagrid? That would’ve been cute. Anyway…

Kat: That would’ve been cute.

Alison: Oh, that’s cute.

[Rosie laughs]

Alison: Have more kids Harry, Ginny, and name them better names.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: I have a question: are there any Johns or Jonathans in Harry Potter?

Michael: Remus John Lupin.

Rosie: Because that is one of the most common names.

Kat: Yeah.

Rosie: Remus John Lupin, okay. There you go.

Michael: Yeah, he’s named after his dad, I believe.

Laura: Yeah.

Rosie: Because that’s not unusual in this world.

Michael: So, yeah.

Alison: Wait, no, no…

Rosie: … unusual in this…

Alison and Michael: His dad’s name is Lyle.

Alison: Yeah. I was like, “That’s not right.” [laughs]

Michael: Was it his grandfather? Yeah, John came from somewhere.

Alison: Something like that.

Kat: It’s a family name, yeah.

Michael: Yeah. So, but… Yeah, those are some choices that were made by the Potter family.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Ginny, we haven’t gotten much on her. The little snippet Rowling dropped about her during the – most of these snippets, by the way, listeners, come from a few sources. Many of them come from the chat she did in 2007 right after Deathly Hallows was published, and when asked about Ginny, she said,

“After a few years as a celebrated player for the Holyhead Harpies, Ginny retired to have her family and to become the Senior Quidditch Correspondent at the ‘Daily Prophet.’

And as we know in 2014, if you were on Pottermore then, which, woe betide you if you weren’t because it’s gone now…

[Alison laughs]

Michael: … we actually could read Ginny’s Daily Prophet articles as well as her battle with Rita Skeeter during the Quidditch World Cup.

Alison: It was brilliant.

Kat: Are those not backed up anywhere? They’re not on there at all?

Michael: You have to dig around for them. They’re not on Pottermore anymore. You’ve got to… because some of that was actually on the Pottermore Insider which also no longer exists. So, a lot of that’s gone, unfortunately, but, yes.

Kat: Wayback Machine maybe.

Alison: There you go.

Michael: Wayback Machine doesn’t work for that, sadly. I tried. [laughs] Yeah, it’s because it was all flash-embedded, and so it doesn’t work, but there was much more information dropped on Harry. So, a few things that Rowling said about him,

“Kingsley wanted Harry to head up his new Auror Department. Harry did so. Just because Voldemort was gone, it did not mean that there would not be other Dark witches and wizards in the coming years.”

And Rowling later followed that up by making Harry her Wizard of the Month on her old website, and Harry’s wizard card said, “Harry Potter joined the reshuffled Auror Department under Kingsley Shacklebolt at age 17, rising to become Head of said department in 2007.” So, in nine years, Harry became Head of the Department. A lot of people have questioned during this period that the information came out – do we feel that Harry was qualified to go into an Auror position?

Alison: Did you not read the seven books?

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Michael: I did, but I still have questions about that.

Laura: No, Michael, I agree with what you’re saying or alluding to because I think, in terms of… I’m likening it to being almost like an FBI agent or something like that.

Michael: Mhm.

Laura: Clearly, he’s got the street smarts and the experience, in a sense, but even when you see his experience, he’s always just throwing Expelliarmus at the wall and seeing what sticks.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: There’s more than that…

Alison: Okay. [laughs]

Laura: … I’m sure, to it, but I think he obviously has that natural gut instinct of what is needed to do and stuff, but I think with a little training, a little finessing, I think he’d be perfect for it and eventually be qualified.

Rosie: He did teach the DA well enough to survive everything they went through, so I think he would be able to lead the department in a similar way.

Kat: Yeah, but there’s an Auror exam, right? Tonks had to do that. And for Harry to just be dropped in at the age of 17? I don’t know, it seems a little foolhardy.

Laura: I’m sure it wasn’t that much. I don’t think he was getting the full responsibility, because I think things were so chaotic that they just needed help, really, at that point, but once things got sorted, I think – what is it, ten years? [It’s] a good amount of time, a realistic amount of time for him to be heading it up.

Rosie: He was only missing one year of Hogwarts. Everyone else would be starting around a similar time as well. He’s not being dropped in it. He’s just missed one year, and then joined at the same time as everyone else.

Kat: Yeah, but we don’t know what happens in that seventh year.

Rosie: Probably not Auror training.

Alison: He probably figures it out.

Michael: Also, recall that in this – and we’ll get more into this information later – but Hermione is not with him during this time. At least, for his first year, because she is back at Hogwarts. So, Harry does not have Hermione to lean on in that respect.

Rosie: But he always beat her in Defense Against the Dark Arts, anyway. It was the one thing he was better at than her.

Alison That’s true, yeah.

Michael: But Defense Against the Dark Arts isn’t the only discipline that you need to be an Auror. There are other important skills.

Laura: Also, just studying for the test and things like that.

Alison: Yeah. I’m sure he figures it out. I highly doubt that Kingsley was just like, “Hey, Potter. You’re going to come lead my thing today.” I’m sure he was like, “Will you come join us?” and that’s what Harry wanted to do anyway so he took the test. He could have been studying.

Rosie: And being an Auror is being part of a team so everyone needs to have their different strengths and weaknesses. You’ll probably have a very good potions person and a very good Defense Against the Dark Arts person working together so that they can share their skills.

Laura: And Harry can just be like, “Yeah, I killed Voldemort.”

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: He’s Harry freaking Potter, that’s what he does.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Well, and Harry has lost one ability, according to Rowling during the Bloomsbury chat. He can no longer speak Parseltongue. He loses the ability and is very glad to do. So…

Rosie: Which is extremely interesting because it suggests that the ability to speak Parseltongue came from the Horcrux.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Well, yeah. I think that lends a lot of… Feeds back into the discussion we’ve had since we brought up Horcruxes and Harry’s abilities is how much was the Horcrux and how much was Harry? About a lot of things we’ve examined. So, I think in a way, rather than answer any questions, that opens that up to more discussion. But, in place of Parseltongue, Harry does get Sirius’ motorbike which Mr. Weasley fixes for him and gives back to Harry.

Alison: I like that.

Michael: So, that is in Harry’s possession.

Kat: That’s what he rides to work every day at the Ministry.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Oh, see, I was going to say I like to pIcture Harry just out for drives in the countryside. Just… I don’t know.

Kat: Leather jacket, glasses on.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: I hope we see that in Cursed Child. Just him driving onto the stage on a motorbike.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: I love that. Yes.

Caleb: And I hope Ron makes fun of him for it.

Alison: No, Ron’s in the sidecar. [laughs] Ron’s like, “Yeah!”

[Kat laughs]

Michael: “Of course, wasting no time,” as Rowling said. “I imagine Rita Skeeter immediately dashed off a biography of Harry after he defeated Voldemort. One quarter truth to three quarters rubbish.”

Caleb: At best.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: I hope they read that and bring things up like they’re real. I hope that’s a joke among them. They read that book and bring up something that she totally fabricated and they just pretend like it’s real for the fun of it because that’s hilarious.

Rosie: I do love the idea of a slightly rushed book cashing in on certain things happening. Not going to name any names.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Hmm.

Rosie: Let’s move on.

Alison: Ooh.

Kat: That sounds like a snide remark, Rosie.

Laura: Shade.

Rosie: Never! I’m far too British for that.

Michael: Yeah, no. She passed it off as super classy because she’s British and she has an accent.

Kat: Right, exactly.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: But as Rita notes during her reports on the Quidditch World Cup during 2014 – which are much more a report about Harry and his scratching of his ear which she actually does report on at one point – she does note that the famous lightning scar has company. Potter is sporting a nasty cut over his right cheekbone. So, it looks like Harry’s work – he’s definitely got his work cut out for him in the Auror Department.

Alison: Cursed Child.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: We’ll see how he got that cut.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: That was the hint drop to Cursed Child. Meanwhile, not too far off next to Harry and Ginny are Hermione and Ron. They have had two children who are not named after anybody in particular.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: Yay, because Hermione is sensible. Hermione is the one to follow.

Alison: They’re named after them though.

Laura: I just picture Rob coming in being like, “Can we name him Hagrid?” and all these random people and Hermione just being, “No, or not.”

Michael: “Hugo and Rose, because I like those names. And that’s the end of it.”

Alison: I like that they’ve matched up the first letters of their names match up. I think that’s precious.

Michael: Cute.

Laura: I didn’t even realize that until now. Oh my God. [laughs]

Alison: They go together.

Michael: So, there’s not really much given about Hugo and Rose. They are present, and Rose is going to Hogwarts as well. But a little but about Ron and Hermione: Ron had a few bits of info dropped about him. In Rita Skeeter’s reports, she said, “In the immediate aftermath of the Battle, Weasley entered into employment with the Ministry of Magic alongside Potter, but left only two years later to co-manage the highly successful Wizarding joke emporium, Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes,” which, as Rowling confirmed, became an enormous money spinner. So, if you’ve ever visited it at the Wizarding World in Florida, you’ve contributed funds to Ron and George’s lifestyle. So, thank you. And the trio were eventually featured on Chocolate Frog cards, and Ron will describe this as his finest hour.

Rosie: I really like that.

Alison: So Ron. I love that.

Michael: According to Rowling.

Alison: Does anyone know if you can get those Chocolate Frog cards?

Rosie: I don’t think so.

Alison: Are those available at the Wizarding World?

Kat: I don’t think so.

Alison: Oh. That’s a shame.

Rosie: I’ve only ever gotten Dumbledore and the Founders whenever I’ve gotten a Chocolate Frog.

Laura: I’ve gotten Godric Gryffindor every single time.

Kat: They should add them, though.

Alison: I’ve gotten Gryffindor and Hufflepuff. But they should.

Kat: That would be fun.

Michael: Harry appears as a wizard card in the video games. He’s always the last card you earn in the video games. And, again, he did appear as the Wizard of the Month on Rowling’s site, which is the equivalent to the wizard cards. Of course, the other thing – Ron gets one of the bigger laughs and meatier moments of the trio. He talks about getting his driver’s permit, and that he falsifies and says that he totally did it right to Hermione, and then he turns to Harry and he’s like, “No, I totally Confunded the instructor. I don’t need a driver’s permit. It’s fine.” And we get one last mention of a spell – one new spell. The Super-Sensory Charm. I guess it makes you a good driver.

Rosie: I love that Ron’s getting his driver’s permit when he’s37 as well though. It’s not like it happened when he was 17 like most people, because he’s just telling Harry about it now.

Michael: You know Hermione’s been driving that mom van around for all these years.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: She knew how to drive a car.

Laura: Didn’t Ron become an Auror, though? Because I’ve always had the impression that – and I don’t know if this isn’t true because I’ve just fan-fictioned George’s story in my head too much – but didn’t Ron become an Auror? I was always under the impression that he helped with Wizard Weasleys – you know what I mean – for a few. Just to get them back off the ground and get George back into it. I always thought he then was also an Auror with Harry.

Rosie: I think it’s the other way around.

Michael: That was the question of… yes. The question of that order of events was up in the air until 2014 when Rita Skeeter confirmed in the report that Ron joined the Ministry with Harry for two years and then he went to work at Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes. So it would seem that he is currently working there, but I suppose that he could probably waltz into the Ministry any time he wants because he’s Ronald Weasley. So, yeah. Just like Harry can say, “I killed Voldemort,” Ron can say, “I’m Ronald Weasley and I’m a wizard god!” So…

Rosie: I don’t think that Ron would like the bureaucracy of having to work for government in any way.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Probably not.

Caleb: I just really appreciate that, even though he was clearly capable to be an Auror, that he did something that wasn’t with Harry, in a professional sense. This is one of my favorite things that we learn about the trio.

Michael: And the only reasoning we get – that may or may not be true because, as we know, Rita doesn’t always use direct quotes – is in that report, she did say that Ron said that the Wizarding War took a toll on him and that was his reasoning behind [it] and that he was looking forward to helping George in his store, but that all seems relatively truthful.

Alison: Yeah. I feel like that could almost be his Horcrux experience catching up with him. He’s just like, “I’m done with things like that. I’m going to go have some laughs. That sounds better.”

Michael: Now, Hermione, of course, did exactly what everybody expected her to do. She was awesome.

Kat: Yes.

Michael: First of all, we get… Hermione’s actually one of the tidbits we get about the immediate aftermath of the Battle. Hermione found her parents, undid the memory damage, and brought them home straight away, and to quell the debate about that, Rowling clarified during the Bloomsbury chat, when asked about Hermione using a memory charm, she clarified, “There are two different charms. She has not wiped her parents’ memories, as she later does to Dolohov and Rowle. She has bewitched them to make them believe that they are different people.” So, there’s some clarification on that. The movies definitely went on a different rack for a more emotional punch, I believe, which worked out great in the movie, but there is the confirmation there that Hermione’s parents were perfectly fine. They just had a very nice vacation in Australia.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Hermione did go back to Hogwarts to get her NEWTs and she began her post-Hogwarts career at the Department For the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures, where she was instrumental in greatly improving life for house-elves and their ilk. She then moved, despite her jibe to Scrimgeour, to the Department of Magical Law Enforcement where she was a progressive voice who ensured the eradication of oppressive pro-pureblood laws. And, according to Rita’s report on Pottermore, she is currently Deputy Head of Magical Law Enforcement.

Alison: So proud of her.

Michael: Hermione is awesome. But, of course, there was quite the hubbub just back in 2014.

Rosie: I’m just not going to listen to this bit. I’m fine.

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Alison: No, I… mhm. Mhm!

Michael: We have to bring it up. I [have] got to bring it up. Now, the important thing to note about this is that Time magazine got ahold of snippets of this interview that Emma Watson did with J.K. Rowling before the full interview was released and, my, did it explode. Because a few quotes were taken out of context.

Caleb: To say the least.

Kat: And then misquoted.

Alison: Yeah.

Caleb: Somewhere on MuggleNet, there’s a piece that I wrote that… with a lot of vitriol with the fallout and terrible journalism that occurred after this happened.

Laura: I remember that.

Alison: Yeah, I do. I’m still cleaning up for this.

Michael: 2014, yeah. February of 2014.

Laura: Oh my God.

Alison: I’m still correcting people on this. Still.

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: So, to put it all together… now, of course, I didn’t quite cherry pick like Time magazine did. I had to take a few things out just to make it a little more coherent. But this, I think, conveys Rowling’s point and it says here,

“I wrote the Hermione/Ron relationship as a form of wish fulfillment. That’s how it was conceived, really. For reasons that have very little to do with literature and far more to do with me clinging to the plot as I first imagined it, Hermione with Ron. [I]f I’m absolutely honest, distance has given me perspective on that. It was a choice I made for very personal reasons, not for reasons of credibility. […] It was a young relationship. I think the attraction itself is plausible but the combative side of it… I’m not sure you could have got over that in an adult relationship, there was too much fundamental incompatibility. […] In some ways Hermione and Harry are a better fit and I’ll tell you something very strange. When I wrote ‘Hallows’, I felt this quite strongly when I had Hermione and Harry together in the tent! I hadn’t told [Steve] Kloves that and when he wrote the script he felt exactly the same thing at exactly the same point. And actually I liked that scene in the film, because it was articulating something I hadn’t said but I had felt. I really liked it and I thought that it was right. I think you do feel the ghost of what could have been in that scene […] because it teeters on the edge of “what are we doing? Oh come on let’s do it anyway”, which I thought was just right for that time. […] [M]aybe [Hermione] and Ron will be alright with a bit of counseling. They’ll probably be fine. He needs to work on his self-esteem issues and she needs to work on being a little less critical. […] Just like her creator, she has a real weakness for a funny man. These uptight girls, they do like them funny. […] It’s such a relief from being so intense yourself – you need someone who takes life, or appears to take life, a little more light heartedly.”

Alison: I call straight BS on the beginning of this quote but by the end I’m a little bit better. [laughs]

Michael: [laughs] Well yes, reading it all in context does make you feel a little bit better, doesn’t it?

Alison: Yes.

Caleb: Imagine that.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: I know everyone’s all mad but I thought this perfectly articulated everything that I had always felt about it. I was never a Harry/Hermione shipper by any means but I wasn’t really a Harry/Ron shipper… oh, my God, Hermione/Ron shipper.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: But many were! But many were.

Laura: Ah, anyway. Because I always felt this way which was just that, yeah, it made sense at the time and they were… That made sense almost as a young thing but I just couldn’t see that continuing for a lifetime when they were, what, sixteen/seventeen when this thing was going down? So, I think how she put it is perfect and I think it’s realistic to life in a sense that… how many times do people date people that they’re not necessarily compatible with on every level but it just makes sense for the time? Yeah, there’s some qualities or whatever so I just think that it’s beautifully put and very realistic.

Rosie: I do think that some of the issues that were, supposedly, incompatible are things that they would have grown out of as they matured anyway.

Alison: Yeah, same.

Rosie: Especially Ron and the emotional issues and all of that stuff. I think, as you grow older and you become more aware of the world and become more aware of your place in it, those things would settle and become less of the combative moment.

Laura: Yeah. But no couple’s 100% compatible.

Alison: Exactly.

Laura: It’s about, like she said, “Uptight girls, they do like them funny.” She needed that balance and he needs that in her. And, obviously, someone like Harry and Ginny is a bit more of a similar personality. I’m sure they probably just had a much more easy going time but that doesn’t not validate Harry and Hermione. Oh, my God, I did it again… Hermione and Ron’s relationship.

[Alison, Kat, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Michael: Freudian slip!

Caleb: But it has been said that… we just talked about Ron changing jobs so I think he probably found himself a lot more and doing something that wasn’t the exact same thing as Harry.

Alison: Yeah.

Caleb: And, like Laura was just mentioning, him maturing a lot… I think that would have been really important to developing and making this relationship work despite whatever struggles they may have had.

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: Becoming more of a person for himself and not just “Harry Potter’s stupid friend or sidekick.”

Rosie: Yeah.

Laura: Which we know was always a super sore spot for him.

Kat: Right, exactly.

Alison: Yeah.

Caleb: Yep, and it was the reason he left, right, was the way the Horcrux played on him when they were on the run?

Kat: Right.

Michael: I think that’s an excellent, probably, explanation for maybe an additional reason that it may not, necessarily, be canon for why Ron moves on from being an Auror is because he always wanted to be an Auror because Harry wanted to be an Auror.

Kat: Mhm.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah, the idea that maybe after experiencing it for a while he was like, [as Ron] “Okay, I was an Auror. That’s enough,” [back to normal voice] and goes to help out his brother and be tight-knit with his family, which is something, I think, Ron always has been.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: And returning to those Weasley roots makes sense to me.

Laura: And, also, just being light-hearted and…

Alison and Michael: Yeah.

Laura: … always being the funny one and it makes sense.

Rosie: He was always the kind of student that didn’t really know what he wanted to do. There’s no clear indication of any of Ron’s interests beyond Quidditch and he wasn’t really that great at that. So, yeah, he followed where other people went because that was what was easy and safe. But, eventually, he managed to find his own niche in the world, which is what we all aspire to do.

Kat: I think he’s always desired to be something which he thought was better. So, I feel like he would be really happy working with his brother because he gets to really contribute and be an important person. He gets to be… I don’t know if he’s part owner or whatnot but he gets to really feel like he’s accomplished something, and he’s a big deal in his family now, which is… if you remember, that’s what he saw in the mirror of Erised: himself being successful and a valued member of his family, which I think he is now.

Laura: And it’s, also, not just his family. It’s also the fact that, obviously, it’s always been Fred and George, Fred and George, and George has this big void now and if Ron… if the two of them, obviously, grow closer and become their closest confidants moving forward, Ron’s doing a lot of good. Just how he was always there for Harry as the companionship that Harry needed, even if it wasn’t always practical. If he can do the same for George, I think that that’s really valuable.

Alison: And I think all that leads into… I’ve always imagined that Ron and Hermione got married quite a bit after… not quite a bit but a few years after Ginny and Harry did.

Laura: I agree.

Alison: That it took them longer to figure out themselves and figure out that yes, we do work together. I’ve always imagined them not becoming distant but a little bit more distant right after this war, but then coming back together to get to this point, which I think works with what she’s saying. I also will say, though, that this quote about that dance scene in the tent actually made me like that scene in the movie a lot more.

Laura: It’s my favorite scene in the whole series.

Alison: Really?

Kat: Yeah, I love that scene. It’s my favorite added scene. Yeah.

Laura: If people have heard me talk about this when I used to host I brought this up at every possible moment of being on this show…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: … of how much that is my favorite scene in the whole series and I’ve never reacted that emotionally to anything as a real moment and not as just a, “Oh, I’m watching fantasy and it’s Harry Potter and things are cool.” That was just the most human moment to me of the entire series and I will defend it until my dying breath.

Rosie: I love it, but I don’t see it as romantic.

Laura: It’s not romantic, no. It’s not. It’s exactly what J.K. Rowling said.

Rosie: I disagree. I think Jo here is hinting at a possible romance that could have been but then that teeters away.

Laura: I don’t know.

Rosie: I think it’s more friendship in the film to me, but…

Laura: I think it’s… I totally get exactly what J.K. Rowling’s saying here, which is just that when you are in a tight-knit female/male friendship, you can be as platonic as platonic can be and these moments still happen if you’re in that vulnerability, it just happens. So I think it’s just a very realistic thing. And even though nothing happens of it, there’s just this… yeah, the ghost of what could be is a perfect way of putting it.

Alison: Didn’t she add something somewhere too, where she said it’s more that they’re missing Ron and Ginny and their relationships with them than anything between them.

Laura: Yeah. And they’re living that vicariously through each other.

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: Yeah. See, can we get that from each other, and the answer is, “Eh, no.” Which is why they consider it and then they walk away from each other.

Kat: I think the most important thing to note about what Michael read here is that the word regret is not used once. That’s definitely clear.

[Everyone agrees]

Michael: Absolutely. Yeah, and I think what really stands out for me from that quote from Rowling is that she has always equated Hermione to herself and I really don’t see it as something wrong that for a moment, she dropped the literary concerns and distilled a little bit of wish fulfillment because she doesn’t do that very much in Harry Potter. And that’s what makes the Harry Potter books so good, is she doesn’t fall to her readers or her own
wish fulfillment. She does things for the sake of story and this was just one of those moments where she wrote that, probably living a little vicariously through her character and was just like, [in J.K. Rowling’s voice], “I like that. I’m going to keep that.” [in a normal voice] Whether or not you are a Harry/Hermione or a Ron/Hermione shipper, unfortunately, the signs were undeniable that she was dropping hints for Ron and Hermione throughout the series.

Alison: From Book 1.

Rosie: And I think it is literary. I don’t see why the great romances always have to happen with the hero and the love interest. Having the two, whatever, sidekicks, not sidekicks, but the other characters fall in love and have a relationship and have it as a slow-burning build that does happen throughout the series and all that kind of thing is more realistic and it’s more heartwarming because you are the observer in that relationship. We’ve seen it develop through Harry’s eyes and through all of these moments that have happened throughout the years. And I do think it’s really realistic. I don’t think there’s any problem with it. You develop feelings to the books’ trail.

Laura: I think it’s the most realistic.

Rosie: Yeah! So I don’t quite see why it would have been necessary to only call it wish fulfillment. There is enough grounding there that it is perfectly fine and a perfectly good and solid relationship.

Laura: There is more of a foundation there than there is from what we’ve seen in the books between Harry and Ginny. There is enough to justify Harry and Ginny but it is not on the same playing field as what Ron and Hermione have been through together.

[Everyone agrees]

Michael: So much so that in Book 6, Harry is even pondering what it’s going to be like if he becomes the third wheel at one point, so…

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Michael: But there were some characters who did not get together with expected matches. And that leads us into the first set Laura mentioned, the Malfoys. They have quite a bit of backstory that’s been slapped on them since the book was released. As Rowling confirmed in the Bloomsbury chapter, “The Malfoys weaseled their way out of trouble (again) due to the fact that they colluded (albeit out of self-interest) with Harry at the end of the battle.” So that’s how the Malfoys got out of any trouble. They did not go to Azkaban. Now, of course, we now know that Draco married Miss Astoria Greengrass, who we have never heard of before in the series. But details about her, as revealed on Pottercast in 2007, “She was two years younger than he was at Hogwarts.” And as revealed on Pottermore in Draco’s own section,

“Draco married the younger sister of a fellow Slytherin,”

That would be Daphne Greengrass.

“Astoria Greengrass, who had gone through a similar (though less violent and frightening) conversion from pure-blood ideals to a more tolerant life view, was felt by Narcissa and Lucius to be something of a disappointment as a daughter-in-law. They had had high hopes of a girl whose family featured on the “Sacred Twenty-Eight”, but as Astoria refused to raise their grandson Scorpius in the belief that Muggles were scum, family gatherings were often fraught with tension.”

So it would appear that a rift has come between… but yes, I think that was nice to find out that Astoria is not Narcissa because if you just look at the imagery in the movie, Malfoy and Harry both marry their mothers.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: I mean, it shows Draco having growth just in that sense, too, of having him like… yeah.

Rosie: And Harry’s own feelings on that minor villain.

Alison: This is the only thing that remotely redeems Draco for me. I don’t think Drago gets much of redemption but these little tidbits are the only thing that makes me feel like maybe he improved a little bit.

Kat: Oh girl, we’re going to have a Draco-themed show…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kat: … and you and I are going to duke it out.

Alison: Okay.

Rosie: I’m really interested to see what comes of Draco and Scorpius in Cursed Child and see if we get any more than this. Because that would be an interesting story to me.

Michael: Well, and as Rowling revealed, she had a few things to say about Draco and Scorpius. First to Draco, she said on Pottermore under Malfoy’s section,

“I imagine that Draco grew up to lead a modified version of his father’s existence; independently wealthy, without any need to work, Draco inhabits Malfoy Manor with his wife and son. I see in his hobbies further confirmation of his dual nature. The collection of Dark artefacts harks back to family history, even though he keeps them in glass cases and does not use them. However, his strange interest in alchemical manuscripts, from which he never attempts to make a Philosopher’s Stone, hints at a wish for something other than wealth, perhaps even the wish to be a better man. I have high hopes that he will raise Scorpius to be a much kinder and more tolerant Malfoy than he was in his own youth.”

Kat: And thus the Dramione ship is born.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Oh man. Ugh.

Kat: Basically in that paragraph.

Michael: Rowling also noted… because somebody asked her if; like Pettigrew, would Malfoy be in Harry’s debt because of magical ways that that works? And she responded,

“Would Malfoy be in Harry’s debt? I think the very worst burden Harry could have put Malfoy under was this one, that Malfoy has to feel any kind of gratitude. So I tried to show that slightly in the epilogue when they look slightly at each other and there’s a, ‘Hi. It’s so embarrassing, you saved my life. No one will ever let me forget it.'”

[Alison laughs]

Michael: [continues]

“I think, does he owe him a debt, probably not. I think Malfoy would go back to being an improved version of what he was but we shouldn’t expect him to be a really great guy any time soon.”

So that’s… and I think that was pretty excellently conveyed by the fact that they see each other and they give the curt nod and don’t say anything. That seems to summarize it pretty well. Scorpius, Rowling had something to say about him during the Bloomsbury chat, “Scorpius has a lot going against him. Not least that name. However, I think Scorpius would be an improvement on his father, whom misfortune has sobered.”

Alison: And thus was born the Scorpius/Rose ship. [laughs]

Michael: [laughs] Yep. That is also a popular one indeed.

Rosie: But that’s just because Ron warns her away from him.

Alison: Yeah, that too, which…

Rosie: “Stay away from Scorpius, Rosie,” he says.

Michael: Of course you gravitate towards the things that you’re told not to do.

Kat: The forbidden apple.

Alison: Oh no.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Oh! Apple, Drapple!

Alison: Oh no. [laughs]

Michael: [laughs] And Rowling did also confirm that Malfoy’s Dark Mark scar “would fade to a scar not dissimilar to the lightning scar on Harry’s forehead. Like Harry, these scares would no longer burn or hurt.” So there is still evidence left on Malfoy as well as other Death Eaters of what they have done but doesn’t function anymore. Now another family that’s mentioned, the Longbottoms. The only thing that’s mentioned about them in the book is that Neville is now the Hogwarts Herbology teacher and that James should give him love, which James finds absurd.

[Alison, Laura, and Rosie laugh]

Alison: I’m sure he did, though.

Michael: “You can’t give somebody love.”

Alison: I like to imagine he snuck off and was like, “Mom and dad say hi,” and Neville’s like, “All right, kid.”

Rosie: I like the idea of a tea party. Neville invites him around for tea…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: … whenever he is feeling homesick.

Alison: I like that. Aww.

Michael: But we did get confirmation. The Longbottoms are godparents to Albus Severus, as was confirmed by Rita Skeeter in 2014. Neville has kept his DA coin, as Rowling put, “The DA coins would be like badges or medals of honor, proof that the owner had been at the heart of the fight against Voldemort from the start. I like to imagine Neville showing his to his admiring pupils.”

Alison: I like that.

Kat: That’s cute. That always reminded me of my gym teacher in high school. He used to be an NFL player, and he would wear his Super Bowl ring on the first day of school every year…

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: … and he’d be like, “Yeah, check this out.” That always reminded me of him…

Laura: That’s funny.

Kat: … every time I read Neville’s… yeah.

Michael: That’s totally what Neville does: “Oh, what’s this on my desk?”

[Alison laughs]

Caleb: Just pull it out when someone asks about it.

[Michael laughs]

Laura: He’ll have a picture of him and Harry at Christmas or something on his desk just to kind of show off that he knew him.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Alison: Oh, I don’t know if Neville is going to brag like that. I feel like kids would come up and be like, “So… you’re that Neville, right?” Then he would be like, “Yes, look, here it is.” [laughs] “Are we done now?”

Kat: Yeah, I think that Year One Neville may have reacted like that, but I think that new, confident Neville would have no problem bragging a little bit.

Alison: Oh… I feel like confidence doesn’t mean bragging, though.

Laura: I’m on Kat’s side here.

Michael: Yeah.

Laura: Not openly bragging like Lockhart, not like that, but just enough where it’s like, “Hey, kids, this is what I did,” just openly telling war stories since he had such an epic moment.

Michael: “Oh, look, there’s a shiny Galleon in my pocket. I wonder what that is? Oh!”

[Alison and Caleb laugh]

Laura: Right.

Michael: “Let me tell you all about it.”

Rosie: I do think it would be more meaningful to him. He would look at it and remember his time with his friends…

Alison and Laura: Yeah.

Rosie: … more than just using it as a way of showing off. He may show it to people…

Laura: Yeah, I think that’s like a life highlight for him. It was the biggest turning point in his life, honestly, and it meant so much to him just on the idea of friendship…

Rosie: Yeah.

Laura: Yeah, it’s probably his prized possession.

Michael: And talk about people we didn’t expect to get together…

Rosie: Yay, Hufflepuff!

Alison: Yay! Gryffinpuffs!

Michael: A lot of people initially had shipped Neville with Luna even before [Deathly Hallows -] Part 2 came out, and Steve Kloves went along with that. But Neville ends up with Ms. Hannah Abbott, as Rowling put it: “He marries the woman who becomes eventually the new landlady at the Leaky Cauldron, which I think would make him very cool among the students that he lives above the pub. He marries Hannah Abbott.” And in 2014 Rita Skeeter confirmed Hannah has not only re-trained as a Healer, but is applying for the job of matron at Hogwarts. So she’s looking, I guess, to replace Madam Pomfrey.

Rosie: I like the idea that she didn’t want to stay away from him for the whole year anymore, so she’s trying to get closer.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: That’s really sweet.

Michael: D’aww!

Alison: I like this. I like this whole thing.

Laura: I think it’s so nice. I think it’s so nice that it wasn’t… because we criticized this for being too fanfic-y, and if he had ended up with Luna…

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: … in this too, I would have shut the book. It’s too much at that point.

Michael: Yeah, I agree.

Laura: Because for people to be all dating people they had vague interest in when they were sixteen and under, all of them across the board would just be ridiculous.

Kat: Didn’t Jo say that she thinks they would have had some…

Laura: Yeah, dating.

Kat: … little affair? I’m remembering that correctly, right?

Laura: No, no…

Michael: Rowling…

Kat: I think it was…

Laura: I think it was Jo…

Michael: Rowling essentially said – I don’t have the quote here, but I read it – Rowling essentially said that she didn’t mind that idea. She felt initially that, “Oh, that’s ridiculous. That’s not what I wrote at all.” But she said after the fandom presented it and Kloves presented it, she felt a little tug at the idea and she thought that… she said basically that it’s up to the fandom to decide if they dated or not because she likes to actually leave that one open.

Rosie: Yeah. I think she discussed that in the DVD extras for the film.

Alison: Oh.

Michael: Yeah.

Laura: People can date and not get married.

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: That’s okay.

Alison: Which is why I like… I think it was Evanna [Lynch] who said that they probably had a little summer fling and then they just decided it wasn’t right. And I like that, I accept that.

Laura: Because it’s not.

Michael: Yes, because God forbid in Harry Potter that you just have a summer fling.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: It’s all true love and that’s it, okay?

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: But yes, that was a nice little tidbit on the Longbottoms. The Weasleys: Percy actually makes a cameo here; we don’t actually see him, but Harry hears him and immediately goes in the other direction.

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Michael: Percy has married a woman named Audrey – that is literally everything we know about her; her name is Audrey. He is now head of the Department of Magical Transportation, which is why he’s talking about broomstick regulations…

Alison: Oh, Percy… [laughs]

Michael: … when Harry hears him on the platform. They have two children, Molly and Lucy. We know where Molly comes from. I’m assuming Audrey named Lucy, because we’ve got no Lucys as far as I know in the series. And Bill and Fleur, they are not in appearance but by proxy, one of their progenies are. They have three children: [in French accent] Louis, Dominique, and Victoire. Because you definitely have to pronounce it that way.

[Caleb laughs]

Kat: Mhm.

Alison: Has it…

Michael: And of course Louis is the son, and Dominique and Victoire are the daughters.

Alison: Has it been confirmed that Dominique is a daughter? Because I thought that was up in the air for a while.

Michael: Yes. I think it was confirmed somewhere. The sources I got, she’s a girl.

Alison: Okay.

Kat: Mhm.

Rosie: That’s the feminine spelling of it, so it makes sense.

Alison: Oh, okay. I didn’t know that at all. No French, so whatever. [laughs]

Michael: And Victoire was born on the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts, alluding to her name “Victory”. She is busy making out with…

[Alison laughs]

Caleb: Very busy.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: … Teddy Lupin! Ay-oh! Lupin love. True Lupin love going on right on this platform.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: If anything else, this was perfect. Teddy Lupin, we got a little bit on him: Teddy was raised by Andromeda. However, unlike Neville, who was also raised by his grandmother, Teddy had his godfather, Harry, and all his father’s friends in the Order to visit and stay with, as Harry alludes to by saying that Teddy should just move in already.

Alison: That’s like having the coolest extended family ever pretty much.

Michael: [laughs] Yeah. Oh my God. And as Rowling said during the Carnegie Hall chat: “Even though you don’t see Teddy, I wanted to express in the epilogue that he gets an even better godfather than Harry had. Because Sirius had his faults, I think we must admit. He was a risky guy to have as a godfather because Teddy gets someone who really has been there, and Harry becomes a really great father-figure for Teddy as well as his own children.” So I thought that was a nice sentiment there.

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: Aww.

Rosie: I really like Teddy’s depiction in the epilogue, and I think it lends him to be that kind of cool teenager that we imagine Sirius to have been. So you got a really nice godfather-ish link there.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: Because just from how the other kids are talking about this going on, they obviously look up to “our Teddy” and they obviously see him as the really cool, older teen figure that they’re all aspiring to be. So just for Teddy to be in that position where he’s got that little fanclub of kids just makes me go, “Aww.” It’s really cute. [laughs]

Michael: Yeah.

Alison: I like that he sounds very much like Tonks. That makes me very happy.

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: That he’s not just… I’m sure he has a lot of Remus in him, but I like that he has that brash little attitude like Tonks. I like that a lot, that he tells James to go away.

[Alison, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Alison: “We’re busy.” [laughs]

Michael: Well, as actually these next two pieces of info reveal, he’s got a perfect balance of the two of them. As Rowling confirmed, he is a Metamorphmagus like his mother; he is not a werewolf. And thanks to Twitter, during the tweet when Rowling confirmed that James had been sorted into Gryffindor, she also confirmed that Teddy Lupin was named Hufflepuff Head Boy this year. He will graduate from Hogwarts this summer.

Alison: Aww.

Michael: So congratulations to Teddy.

Kat: And that was in 2015, to be clear.

Michael: Yes, in 2015 he was named Head Boy, yep. So…

Laura: So Teddy Lupin and I are the same age?

Alison: No.

Michael: Who and what?

Alison: No, he’d be… then he’d be 17.

Laura: Oh, no, Hogwarts, not college. Never mind.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Dating opportunities, maybe? [laughs]

Laura: That’s why I was confused, yeah.

Michael: [laughs] But there were a few gaps that are alluded to by this chapter but were filled in by Rowling later because, as we mentioned, we had lots of questions. So, I split them up into little sections here. First section: the Ministry of Magic, because everybody was wondering what happened to the political system of the wizarding world. As Rowling confirmed, Kingsley became permanent Minister for Magic. The Ministry of Magic was de-corrupted with Kingsley at the helm. The discrimination that was always latent there was eradicated. Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny, and others would of course play significant part in the rebuilding of wizarding society through their future careers.

Rosie: You see, now that is wish fulfillment. Government doesn’t work that way.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Everybody helped and everything was perfect.

Caleb: Yeah, definitely. It’s not that smooth for them.

Michael: And politics were great and nobody complained about anything.

Alison: If only!

Caleb: Only people with the best intentions up at the top. It doesn’t happen that easily.

Alison: Yeah, if only.

Michael: Kingsley would have wanted Ron, Neville, Harry, and they would have all gone and they would have all done the job. And I think that they would have been… that would have been a good thing for them too. Because to go through that battle and then be relegated to the sidelines, I think they would have felt a need to keep going and finish the job. So that would have been rounding up really the corrupt people who were doing a Lucius Malfoy and trying to pretend that they weren’t really involved. So basically, they were sent to round up Death Eaters and…

Alison: And I can see…

Rosie: Which is interesting, considering that the Malfoys then weren’t rounded up or brought to trial. [laughs]

Alison: Yeah, yeah.

Michael: Well, I guess… I think it was implied that they were brought to trial…

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: … but they were given the slip because Harry probably testified; he was like, “Well, she did say I was dead so it’s fine.”

Alison: [laughs] I know.

Rosie: But Lucius didn’t.

[Kat laughs]

Rosie: I think he should have sentenced his dad, to be honest.

Laura: I mean, Harry does owe it all to Narcissa. Harry wouldn’t be there if it [weren’t] for her, unfortunately.

Alison: I can see after this point is when Neville and Ron leave being Aurors; after all this is over a couple of years later. I can see that being the point where they’re like, “All right, we finished that chapter. It’s time to move on.”

Michael: Yeah.

Kat: Well, can you imagine how terrible that is to round up these Death Eaters and if they had to sit in those trials? To just continually be reliving the Battle of Hogwarts…

Alison: Yeah, that’s true.

Kat: … over and over and over again. I don’t blame them. It’d be terrible.

Michael: [in a mysterious voice] Cursed Child. [back to normal voice] Yeah, definitely. Well, and another thing that’s changed about the justice system: Azkaban no longer uses Dementors.

Alison: Hallelujah.

Michael: Kingsley would see to that. The use of Dementors was always a mark of the underlying corruption of the Ministry, as Dumbledore constantly maintained. Rowling also confirmed that Dementors will never completely disappear but that with more happiness in the world, they do decrease in numbers and that Muggles did, in fact, start noticing that things were a lot sunnier after 1998, apparently.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Michael: Rosie, can you confirm? [laughs]

Rosie: Well, it’s currently raining, so…

Kat: I was going to say…

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: False.

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: It’s two days away from May and we’ve had snow.

Alison: Oh my gosh.

Rosie: That never happens. So there [are] definitely Dementors around at the moment.

[Michael laughs]

Laura: I heard that this morning.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: I think it’s the political system at the moment. There’s something bad going on.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: Yeah, that’s weird because that usually happens here and we haven’t gotten that so I don’t know what happened. Sorry. [laughs]

Michael: And as to the fate of a very prominent individual who everybody wanted to know the end of…

Laura: [as Umbridge] Hem, hem.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: With the fall of Lord Voldemort, Dolores Umbridge was put on trial for her enthusiastic co-operation with his regime, and convicted of the torture, imprisonment, and deaths of several people. Some of the innocent Muggle-borns she sentenced to Azkaban did not survive their ordeal.

Rosie: That’s so sad.

Kat and Michael: Yeah.

Laura: So is she currently in jail?

Alison: I hope so.

Michael: Yes, she is currently in jail, and that was first confirmed by the Bloomsbury Chat and later elaborated on by Pottermore in Umbridge’s section. Over at Hogwarts things were… there’s quite a bit going on over there. As we already established, Harry and Ron didn’t go back; Hermione did, which Rowling first confirmed on PotterCast. Now, on The Today Show when she was interviewed by Meredith Vieira, Rowling answered… somebody asked… Meredith actually asked, “Who was the Headmaster?” She responded – sorry, Caleb – “[The headmaster] would be someone new… McGonagall was really getting on a bit. So someone completely new.”

Caleb: I mean, I’m totally okay with this because… well, yeah, girl needs a beach quickly. But…

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Caleb: So she went through a lot. If you sit and think how much she went through… she endured Dumbledore’s lifespan… well, not living as long as long…

Rosie: She got six Stunning Charms to the chest in Book 5 or 6 or whatever one it was.

Michael: Mhm.

Caleb: Yeah, so girl’s been through a lot. So I think it would’ve been hard for her to take up that mantle just because she had worked in tandem with Dumbledore for so long. So I think these last couple of years for her were really just seeing as much through as she could to give Harry the chance to get it done, and now I think that she just sees changing of the guard is appropriate and to get out of there.

Kat: And I think her place, too, is to be the person who knows the school so well and can help the next generation of headmaster and students and teachers and all of that acclimate to the future as well, so…

Michael: Yeah, she’d be a great transitionary period headmaster.

Kat: For sure.

Caleb: Yep.

Laura: And I think she was responsible, really, for keeping the children as safe as she could under the reign of the Carrows and Snape and everything.

Kat: Mhm.

Laura: That was her priority, I think. The primary reason for being there was just to make sure that Hogwarts still stood [and] the kids were safe, and then now that that’s off the table… didn’t she actually fight Voldemort herself at some point during the battle?

Caleb: Yep.

Kat: Mhm.

Michael: Yeah.

Laura: So I agree, she needs a break.

Kat: She seems like the “quiet life” kind of person.

Michael: Yes.

Kat: Minus all the Harry Potter junk. [laughs]

Michael: [laughs] Not her fault that Harry Potter went to school.

Kat: Right, exactly.

Michael: Well, and along with that, we do have at least confirmation that she was headmistress through 2008 because she was still headmistress when she authorized Hermione to publish Dumbledore’s notes with Tales of Beedle the Bard, and as is a very popular joke that’s been thrown around on Tumblr, “She looked down one day on the new students list, saw James Sirius Potter, and said, ‘F this,’ and retired.”

[Kat, Michael, and Rosie laugh]

Rosie: I love that meme.

Michael: So that’s… [laughs] That’s probably the most popular explanation of when and why McGonagall left. Funnily enough, Winky is still at Hogwarts and she was one of the oncoming house-elves who attacked the Death Eaters in the final battle, and as far as her addiction to butterbeer, according to Rowling, she’s dried out a bit now.

[Laura laughs]

Michael: So Winky is still doing things in the kitchen with a little more coherency. So Harry would ensure as far as Snape goes that Snape’s heroism was known. Of course, that would not stop Rita Skeeter from writing the book Snape: Scoundrel or Saint? [Rowling] also noted, “I know Harry would have insisted that Snape’s portrait was on [the Headmaster’s] wall, right beside Dumbledore’s. As for whether Harry would go back to talk to him, I think, I’m not sure he would have done.” So that’s Snape. He at least gets his place on the wall. So on the topic of Snape, the Slytherin house as a whole, Rowling noted, “Slytherin has become diluted. It is no longer the pure-blood bastion it once was. Nevertheless, its dark reputation lingers, hence Albus Potter’s fears.” Do you guys feel that that could’ve realistically happened? And I know we were questioning before, too, how…

Laura: Uh, yeah.

Michael: Well, I know there was the question raised about Slytherin being ostracized by the other houses and maybe how it came back to the other houses. But I know we were curious about this, especially because of the idea that, “Did the Slytherins come back during the battle? Was it just Slughorn?” What are some thoughts on the Slytherins here in their final bow?

Laura: I mean, I think it’s realistic that it got diluted just on the technical difficulty of maintaining a pure-blood house of that size where there was that pure-blood ideology. There [are] just less and less pure-bloods and people with that sort of thing and I think, yeah, after seeing all those pure-blood [ideologies] fall so drastically and all those people die and get put in jail… I would hope that some children that were able to form their own opinions of the world maybe would’ve changed their ideologies, and just like Malfoy raised his kids slightly less [extremely], that continued with everyone else’s.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: And maybe some of the Death Eater kids just never went back. They were like, “Ah, I can’t go back there. That was terrible.”

Laura: Mhm.

Alison and Michael: Yeah.

Kat: So that could help too.

Alison: I wonder if it’s… I almost equate it to how Hufflepuff is seen at the beginning of this series, where people think it’s one way but it’s really not and it just has that reputation. So maybe it still has that dark reputation and that’s why Al is a little hesitant, but I can see it…

Rosie: If you think about all the stories that Albus would have heard, as well, growing up…

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Mhm.

Rosie: … he would’ve heard stories of his dad at school and Ron at school and the fights against the Slytherins that they had… you’re going to have that reputation lingering for a little while even if it’s changing at the actual school itself.

Laura: It’s also just that Harry’s generation of being at Hogwarts were the children of Death Eaters…

Alison and Rosie: Yeah.

Laura: … and that’s not going to be the case moving forward because the Death Eaters themselves are going to be moving past the age of having school-aged children.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: Especially when people like Draco’s son, Scorpius, we’ve been told will be a bit tamer and a bit more liberal than their parents were.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: So yeah, there’s hope for the future.

Alison: [in a mysterious voice] Cursed Child.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Well, and lightening things just as Slytherins lightened up a bit, the jinx on the Defense Against the Dark Arts position has officially been lifted at last. So Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers can stay for more than one term now.

[Alison laughs]

Rosie: I like the idea that that’s how Dumbledore knew that Voldemort would always come back; [it] was because that curse was still on that position…

[Michael laughs]

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: … and the jinx would die when Voldemort died…

Michael: Voldemort died.

Rosie: … so this is why it’s been lifted.

Kat: Clever.

Michael: So that’s gone. Firenze was welcomed back; “The rest of the [centaur] herd was forced to acknowledge that Firenze’s pro-human leanings were not shameful, but honorable.” So he got to go back to the forest, which I guess also assumes that Trelawney got her post back as the only Divination teacher at Hogwarts. I’m sure McGonagall was, at least, soft enough to keep her on staff regardless of their differences.

Laura: Maybe that’s what Pavarti Patil does or something.

Alison: Ooh!

Kat: [laughs] Right.

Michael: Oh, yeah. There you go.

Alison: That’s nice.

Michael: Well, yes, Pavarti, and Lavender, and Seamus, and Dean are some of many in the group who still do not have definitive story pinned to them of what happened to them afterwards. There was some questions about…

Kat: Or a status if they’re even alive. [laughs]

Alison: Heck yeah.

Michael: Lavender became a little tied up with things especially when Pottermore went with the movie canon that she died.

Rosie: Yeah.

Alison: Oh, gosh.

Michael: And then they backtracked on it and said that…

Rosie: We’ll discuss that in the film episode, I think.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Yep, her fate is unknown. So, poor Lavender, who knows? But I think a lot of people actually would really like to know the answer to that one. So, Hagrid – somebody asked Rowling if Hagrid got married and had children.

[Kat laughs]

Michael: She said, “No.” [laughs] “Realistically, Hagrid’s pool of potential girlfriends is extremely limited because, with the giants killing each other off, the number of giantesses around is infinitesimal and he met one of the only, and I’m afraid, she thought he was kind of cute but she was a little more – how should I put it – sophisticated than Hagrid. So, no, bless him.”

Alison: [laughs] Aww.

Michael: But as we know from this chapter, Hagrid is still the gamekeeper at Hogwarts doing his thing.

Alison: And he invites them to tea on the first Friday.

Michael: Do you still think he teaches… Do you think he got back to teaching Care of Magical Creatures or did somebody else take up that post?

Alison: Yeah, I think so.

Caleb: I don’t.

Michael: That would be…

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kat: I hope so. I feel like he needs something to look forward to when he wakes up in the morning.

Michael: Considering the history of, at least Kettleburn, we know that the Care of Magical Creatures teacher’s just prone to being a little foolhardy, anyway. Aberforth is still there at The Hog’s Head, playing with his goats. Make of that what you will.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: That’s Aberforth.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: And, interestingly, the Resurrection Stone has remained on the Hogwart’s grounds, but as Rowling said, “I imagine that the Resurrection Stone was squashed into the ground by a centaur’s hoof as the centaurs dashed to the aid of the Hogwart’s fighters and, thereafter, became buried.” So, no more of that. That’s gone.

Kat: That’s beautiful, actually. I…

Alison: That actually is really nice.

Kat: … I forgot about that.

Michael: Yeah. I like that ending for the Resurrection Stone. I think that’s a perfect ending for it.

Kat: Me too.

Michael: In the Quidditch world, Krum did find love, though he had to go back to his native Bulgaria to do so, and, of course, as we know from the big Quidditch World Cup in 2014, he originally retired in 2002. He returned to and won the Quidditch World Cup for Bulgaria in 2014.

Kat: How convenient.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Yes, wasn’t it, though? And, as we also know, Dumbledore’s Army was all there to see him through that, including Harry and his family, where they all reunited at the 2014 Quidditch World Cup. Somebody also asked if the Chudley Cannons ever won the Quidditch World Cup. Rowling’s response was, “Bless the Chudley Cannons. Perhaps they’ll win the Quidditch World Cup, but they need to replace the entire team and down several cauldrons of Felix Felicis.”

[Kat laughs]

Michael: So, no.

Rosie: Also, they’ll need to become the national team rather than a…

Alison: Yeah. [laughs]

Caleb: Yeah, this is like a Champions League V…

Rosie: They’ll win the British Quidditch Cup.

Caleb: Yeah.

[Rosie laughs]

Michael: And even then, they won’t.

Kat: [laughs] Right.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: A few more details about some other characters. Within the Weasley family, sadly – this was the sad one – “I don’t think that George would ever get over losing Fred, which makes me feel so sad. However, he names his first child and son, Fred, and he goes on to have a very successful career helped by good old Ron.” As we know, George marries Angelina Johnson, who was previously dating Fred at one point. They have two children: Fred and…

Alison: What? [laughs]

Laura: [laughs] I’m just so against it.

[Alison, Laura, and Michael laugh]

Laura: That’s the one canon thing I just can’t wrap my head around. Just to… Whatever. I’m too invested in this in my head, above anything else in all the series and, unfortunately, I just think this was just how matching up people all against the wall and being like, “Oh, George talked to her at one point during school.” It just was silly, I think…

Michael: Okay, let me…

Laura: … just because, “Oh yeah, she dated Fred and she…”

Michael: Okay, erase that. So, George married Laura Riley…

Laura: Yes, he did.

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: We’re really happy.

Michael: … and had two children: Fred and Laura the second. And it was lovely.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: Yeah. Really happy.

[Michael laughs]

Laura: Thanks for asking.

Michael: You’re welcome. Angelina did also go to care for her ailing father in 2014. Charlie Weasley remains single, ladies. Hey.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: You know what I love about Charlie?

Rosie: Asexual Charlie Weasley.

Kat: Yeah, and that’s what I was just going to say. There’s an awesome article that one of our staff members, Shannen, wrote on MuggleNet. Because Charlie has very much become the fictional – I don’t want to say poster child, but I guess – poster child for asexual awareness in the fandom community. And I think it’s amazing. So, if you guys have any interest in that at all, definitely go check out her article. It’s called “Protect Charlie Weasley at all Costs.” It’s on MuggleNet. So it’s really good.

Michael: Well, and as it lines up, Rowling did say that Charlie was just simply more interested in his dragons than he was with people. So…

Rosie: As he should. Dragons are so much more interesting.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Dragons are awesome!

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: The Lovegoods – we did get quite a bit of information on Luna. As Rowling said in the Bloomsbury chat, “Luna became a very famous Wizarding naturalist who discovered and classified many new species of animals. Though, alas, she never did find a Crumpled-Horned Snorkack and had finally to accept that her father might have made that one up. She ended up marrying, rather later than Harry and company, a fellow naturalist and grandson of the great Newt Scamander.” And, of course, that is the “swarmy Rolf Scamander,” as Rita put it. They have two children together: Lorcan and Lysander. Very Shakespearean [laughs] names.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: And her father, Xenophilius, is still doing The Quibbler. The Quibbler, according to Rowing, is doing pretty well, actually. It has returned to its usual condition of advanced lunacy and is appreciated for its unintentional humor. And, just a few miscellaneous points, as was pointed out earlier, Rita is still doing her thing. She has had a curse recently placed on her in 2014 to the solar plexus, as Ginny put it.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Ginny was the committor of that curse, of course, but Rita did publish an untitled, as far as we know, biography of Harry. We don’t know the title of that one. She also did one for Snape, “Scoundreal or Saint?” and one [laughs] about Dumbledore’s Army called, “Dumbledore’s Army: The Dark Side of the Demob,” which was published on July 31, 2014, available at all Flourish and Blotts locations. Somebody asked about – this was a fun one – somebody asked about what happened to Gilderoy Lockhart. Rowling confirmed, “He will never recover, nor would I want him too. He’s happy where he is, and I’m happier without him.”

Kat: [laughs] Which is such a personal jab to the guy who knows that he’s Lockhart.

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: He’s like, “Damn it.” [laughs]

Michael: Who, as she said, doesn’t know he’s Lockhart because he’s probably going around telling people that he inspired Dumbledore.

[Laura laughs]

Michael: So…

Kat: Right. Exactly. [laughs]

Michael: So, no hurt feelings anyway. And last little fun tidbit here; “Marietta Edgecombe’s pimply formation faded eventually, but it did leave a few scars.” As Rowling put it, “I loathe a traitor.”

Kat: Hear hear.

Michael: So even the best acne medicine can’t cure poor Marietta Edgecombe. But we get to the end moment, which is pretty much the core of this epilogue. And, of course, ever so beautifully, Harry leans down to talk one-on-one with Albus Severus and reveal that, during Albus’s concerns about being sorted into Slytherin, that he does, in fact, have a choice. And the narration reveals that Harry has never told his children that he was given the option by the Sorting Hat. So, that’s a nice little tidbit he gets to share with just Albus. Interestingly though… So, of course, many have wondered where Albus ended up – and we’ll get to that in a minute with Cursed Child but I did notice this fun tidbit in Rita Skeeter’s article during the Quidditch World Cup where she said, “The Potter family have been given prime places in the front row. All are wearing the red of Bulgaria except middle child, Albus, who is sporting Brazilian green.” And I didn’t know…

Caleb: That settles it.

Michael: [laughs] Yeah.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: The allegiances have been laid.

Alison: Man!

Michael: I didn’t know if that was meant to be just a fun dig at us, the readers, or…

Rosie: Just [unintelligible].

Michael: … if it was actually a hint or…

Alison: I hope not.

Kat: I think it would be awesome if he was sorted into Slytherin.

Alison: No, I don’t. I want him to be…

Kat: That would be awesome.

Alison: … a Hufflepuff or something.

Michael: [laughs] He’s gunning for Gryffindor, he doesn’t want Slytherin, the Sorting Hat says, “Hufflepuff!”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: He’s like, “What?”

Laura: Just to ask a silly question because I should know this: it hasn’t been confirmed which house he’s in, right?

Rosie: No.

Michael: It hasn’t.

Alison: No.

Kat: Correct.

Caleb: It has not.

Laura: That’s going to be in Cursed Child.

Alison: Cursed Child.

Michael: Cursed Child.

Caleb: But it just has been in this quote.

Alison: You guys can’t see this but I’m doing this hand thing with that.

[Rosie laughs]

Laura: Oh, I see the hand motions.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: Cursed Child.

[Michael laughs]

Alison: Sorry, Caleb. [laughs] Go ahead.

Kat: Yeah.

Caleb: No, I didn’t have anything else. I was just saying it’s confirmed. This is it. This is your confirmation right here.

Alison: No. [laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Michael: I couldn’t help but wonder if this wasn’t meant to be some kind of fun little hint from Rowling because it seems so blunt.

Laura: I think so.

Michael: Yeah.

Caleb: Why else is he supporting Brazil?

Alison: Ugh, I don’t want it.

Rosie: I just like the idea that the whole play is going to be about Albus having middle child syndrome.

[Alison laughs]

Kat: Yeah. [laughs]

Rosie: It’s just going to be him going, “You named me after these stupid professors and you guys are just… I’m going to do the opposite of whatever you tell me.”

[Alison, Caleb, and Michael laugh]

Alison: “When I could have been Arthur Albus.”

Rosie: Yeah.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Laura: I think it’s very likely that it will be Slytherin because that will give… she’s always been criticized for not having…

Alison: Ugh!

Laura: … naming them as a House enough…

Alison: I hate that.

Laura: … and getting into whatever and giving it diversity. But that kind of makes sense.

Kat: Oh, Alison, you’re such a purist!

[Michael and Rosie laugh]

Alison: Oh, I know. I know.

Kat: I do agree, Laura, I think it would be awesome if he was in Slytherin.

Laura: Because we know everything there is to know about Gryffindor.

Kat: It would add so many layers to the character and the struggle. Think about the struggle that Albus would have if he was a Slytherin coming from a Gryffindor family.

Laura: He would be the only one in his whole family.

Kat: Yeah.

Alison: What if he’s a Ravenclaw? [laughs]

Laura: Now I kind of want to see it.

[Michael laughs]

Kat: And also his father killed one of the biggest Slytherins in recent history. So… I don’t know, I just think it would be really dope.

Alison: Ugh.

Kat: I kind of want that really badly now.

Rosie: All we know about the play is that he’s struggling with the legacy of his father, isn’t it?

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: Correct.

Laura: Yeah. Well, that would be one way to struggle with it.

Kat: Sure. Sure, sure, sure.

Michael: Well, and interestingly, Rowling… for a long time we, the readers, believed that the last word of Deathly Hallows was going to be “scar.” That was not the case and Rowling did reveal during The Today Show chat with Meredith Vieira that for a long, long time, the last line was something like: “Only those he loved could see the lightning scar.” And that was a reference to the fact that Harry was flanked by his loved ones. So, what do we prefer: that or “All is well”?

Rosie: “All is well.”

Caleb: “All is well.”

Alison and Laura: “All is well.”

Kat: “All is well,” for sure.

Alison: Yeah.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kat: The other one’s way too sentimental and just a little hokey.

Rosie: And the whole problem with the style of the epilogue was that it was the style of Philosopher’s Stone and Chamber of Secrets. It wasn’t the style of the later books…

Alison: But I think that’s lovely because I think it’s indicating that we’re starting a new story. We’re starting Harry’s kid’s story, and so we’re going to go back to that kind of tone.

Rosie: Yeah, but as an end it didn’t work.

Alison: Which… I don’t know, I liked that.

Laura: That’s also what makes it a frustrating epilogue as not a conclusion, but a beginning.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kat: Right. Because we don’t want the start of his kid’s story. We want the end of Harry’s story.

Alison: But we got the end of Harry’s story.

Rosie: And that’s the problem when you write that chapter and keep it locked in a safe for so long. Sure, she made some changes, but I still don’t think she changed it and adapted it quite as much as it needed.

Laura: Tonally, it needed to shift just a dial or so. You could still be happy and all this, but it was Philosopher’s Stone

Kat: Too squeaky clean.

Laura: I just said Philosopher, okay.

Alison: Oh, I liked it.

Rosie: It needed the wrinkles on his forehead that the film has. [laughs]

Laura: Yeah. [laughs]

Alison: [laughs] Sorry.

Michael: Of course, as we know, the final line is, “All was well.” But we must ask: or is it?

Alison and Michael: Dun-dun-dun…

[Kat sighs]

Michael: Because…

Alison: Cursed Child

[Alison and Kat laugh]

Michael: … we have Cursed Child coming right around the corner. [in a foreboding voice] Curse Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, parts one and two!

Kat: Wait, let’s talk about the name first off because [it’s] dumb.

[Everyone laughs]

Alison: Yeah, it’s pretty dumb. It’s really dumb.

Kat: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child?

Laura: [unintelligible] across the board.

Kat: Like, does it have… no. Just name it something different because I think that’s part of the problem why people are calling it the eighth book…

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: … and why think it’s an eighth book, because the naming convention is the same.

Alison: It’s so dumb.

Kat: And I hate it. I don’t mind the story. I don’t want it to be called or coined or even related to the seven novels in any way, shape or form…

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: So the fact that they’re calling it the eighth book really bothers me.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: I think we just have to wait and see. I think it will depend on how much of Harry we get. If it is following Albus, then it shouldn’t be called Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.

Alison: Exactly.

Rosie: If it is following Harry and does have at least half the play where it’s actually following Harry’s life and his story, then that makes it a Harry Potter story. And therefore it can be Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.

Michael: Well, it would seem based on the summary that we’ve gotten – which I’ll read here – it seems like, Rosie, you’re on the right track, because the play appears to be about both of their lives intertwining. And as the summary reads – and listeners, you can go check out this as well as more information about Cursed Child on the play’s official website:

“It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children. While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes darkness comes from unexpected places.”

Rosie: Albus is a Horcrux! Dun-dun-dun…

[Everyone laughs]

Laura: That’s interesting because it totally flips that… which I believe, is it a book quote or a movie quote? – I know it’s a movie quote; I just don’t know if it comes from the book – what Albus [Dumbledore] says in one of his opening Hogwarts school speeches where he was like, “Oh, only if one remembers to turn on the light.”

Alison: Yeah.

Laura: It’s where lightness and happiness can come from. The first time I read it, that’s where my mind went automatically because I’m so used to that idea. Then I just read it: “Oh, they said darkness. That sounds worse.”

[Michael laughs]

Kat: Yeah.

Alison: I wonder though how much of this is what we’re actually going to get. I wonder how much of this is [them] trying to market it in a certain way, and so they’re marketing it more that it’s going to be about Harry. But I, personally, really hope it’s going to focus on Al.

Rosie: Well… from looking at the cast, you would think that it has to be…

Michael: It has everyone!

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: There has to be enough in there for those actors to be needed in the roles that they’ve been given.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: There is a cast of 42 people. [laughs]

Rosie: And the age range is interesting.

Kat: Also, if you watch the most recently released video from the behind the scenes when Jo visited the production and rehearsal, there’s a scene – if you watch it very closely – there’s a scene where people are dancing with briefcases.

Alison: Yeah, like trunks.

Kat: So they’re definitely in the Ministry of Magic, because why would they have briefcases at Hogwarts?

Alison: Wait…

Laura: So it’s a musical?

Michael: Oh, see, that’s not what I…

Alison: I thought they were trunks. I thought they were going to Hogwarts.

Michael: Yeah. I thought they were Hogwarts students getting ready to go to Hogwarts.

Alison: That’s what it looks like to me.

Kat: Wait, are you going to lift a trunk up and over your head?

Rosie: To put it on a trolley.

Alison: Well, okay, maybe if you’re carrying a suitcase and a trunk… yeah.

Kat: No.

Michael: I thought that the way that…

Kat: It’s adults.

Michael: You’ll have to watch the scene, listeners, and decide for yourself. But I thought that that was meant to evoke the students getting ready to go to Hogwarts and that maybe… to me, the vision suggested that this is a very artistic vision that they’re looking to do for Cursed Child.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: It’s adults swinging the briefcases, guys; it’s not kids.

Alison: Are you sure? I thought it was kids.

Kat: I am staring at it right now. It’s adults.

Rosie: Throwing spells and things around, as well, though. They look like there was some fighting going on.

Laura: And it was between Ron and Hermione.

Michael: I just assumed some of the…

Kat: Yeah, because Noma is there.

Alison: What?

Laura: Ron and Hermione were dueling each other. I don’t know if…

Alison: No, I thought they were just dancing.

Laura: Well, they had sword-looking things.

Rosie: Cursed Child is not a musical, guys. There won’t be that much dancing involved.

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Isn’t it, though?

Alison: Is it a musical?

[Michael laughs]

Laura: You see them dueling, like wand dueling or something, but they’re practicing and it’s the actress who’s playing Hermione and the actor that’s playing Ron. So everyone was like, “Oh, my God, they’re fighting in their marriage.” And I’m like, “I’m sure they’re not.”

Rosie: They could have just been learning wand choreography. Yeah, we’ll see.

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Well, and that’s just it. As we know, Ron, Harry, Hermione, Malfoy, many of these characters are going to make appearances in Cursed Child, and it would seem we’re going to get some pretty substantial tidbits about things that have happened to them since the “Nineteen Years Later.”

Alison: Yeah.

Michael: Because this apparently does pick up after the “Nineteen Years Later” epilogue.

Rosie: Yeah.

Michael: So… who knows?

Alison: I’ll let you all know in two months.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Alison: Two months from the day this episode releases.

Kat: Yeah, that is adults carrying briefcases. Sorry, it’s adults.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: Okay, it would make sense if it was the Ministry because Harry works there.

Rosie: Yep, and he’s an overworked Ministry official. That’s what we’ve been told.

Michael: Because they’ve… [unintelligible]

Laura: Well, I only ever am able to see plays 20 years after they’ve first been on Broadway.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Laura: So when we come for our 50th year reunion, I’ll let you know what I thought about it.

Alison: [laughs] Yeah.

Kat: There is also a fireplace in the background if you zoom in.

Michael: O-ho!

Laura: Okay, you’re right, Kat. [laughs]

Alison: Maybe I need to watch that again. But they could just be dealing with stage sets – things aren’t set yet. They’re probably building and rearranging…

Kat: Maybe, but there’s also pillars and stuff there too.

Laura: Oh my God, it’s the Ministry, Kat.

Alison: Well, I’m sure they could just be building. [laughs]

Michael: As we were talking about, there is going to be a release of both the rehearsal script as well as the definitive post-rehearsal script.

Alison: Just so dumb!

Laura: That’s really stupid.

Alison: So dumb.

Michael: So if you’re complaining about canon, don’t, because there is no canon for this play.

[Alison laughs]

Michael: It just doesn’t possibly exist.

Rosie: I do love the idea that it’s getting loads of people to buy scripts, though.

Alison: Yeah.

Rosie: People probably own some Shakespeare…

Michael: Get interested in theater.

Rosie: They may own one or two plays that they might have studied at school, but for people to actually sit down and read a script is going to be quite an interesting, new thing.

Alison: Yeah.

Kat: There’s going to be so much bitching.

Alison: So much!

Laura: Not to say anything of the script that they’re now also releasing about Fantastic Beasts

Alison: Oh, we don’t talk about that. We do not talk about that because that’s ridiculous. [laughs]

Rosie: As long as they don’t create a novelization of Cursed Child, I’m happy.

Caleb: You guys are super negative. I’m excited about all of these things.

[Caleb and Rosie laugh]

Alison: The screenplay is just one step too far for me. It’s just like… no. That feels too much like milking for profit.

Laura: Everything seems fine except… the only thing I can complain about is that this rough draft script being released before the regular one seems a bit…

Alison: Yeah, it’s a little weird.

Laura: Because then I’m just going to panic [about] which one I want to read and which one is canon and all that stuff…

Michael: Well, she conquered the world of books and now Rowling has moved onto the stage and the screen. She’s making sure that she pulls her audience into every medium of entertainment to look at more critically; I guess [that] is her mission. But I feel that the only proper way to end this is just to read the last little bit, right?

Kat: Yeah!

Michael: Because what else could you do?

Laura: Yeah.

Michael: [reading from Deathly Hallows]

“Albus jumped into the carriage and Ginny closed the door behind him. Students were hanging from the window nearest them. A great number of faces, both on the train and off, seemed to be turned toward Harry. ‘Why are they all staring?’ demanded Albus as he and Rose craned around to look at the other students. ‘Don’t let it worry you,’ said Ron. ‘It’s me. I’m extremely famous.’ Albus, Rose, Hugo, and Lily laughed. The train began to move, and Harry walked alongside it, watching his son’s thin face, already ablaze with excitement. Harry kept smiling and waving, even though it was like a little bereavement, watching his son glide away from him. The last trace of steam evaporated in the autumn air. The train rounded a corner. Harry’s hand was still raised in farewell. ‘He’ll be alright,’ murmured Ginny. As Harry looked at her, he lowered his hand absentmindedly and touched the lightning scar on his forehead. ‘I know he will.’ The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.”

[Michael sighs]

Alison: I have so many feelings.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: Can we just appreciate how far we have come since we started these books, as well?

Caleb: We officially did it.

Rosie: We finished this last book.

Alison and Michael: Yeah.

Rosie: And just think about how when we started this reread there [were] no Fantastic Beasts movies; there were no plays being talked about. Pottermore wasn’t even a thing. And now we’ve had all of this since it started and we’ve got all of this wealth of information that we’ve used for over the last hour to fill in this epilogue.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: And we’ve got all of this stuff that just has happened. Harry Potter may have been published years ago now; it may have been over officially for a very long time, but it’s not been over and it’s not over and there is still the fandom out there. There [are] people like us, and like you guys [who] are listening, who love this as much as it should be loved. And thank you, guys, for joining us on this beautiful journey that has made us all believe that all is well.

Kat: It’s real for us.

Rosie: It is very real for us.

Michael: There you are, listeners! We closed the book on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Kat: So I guess we have one more Podcast Questions of Week to put out there; our very last one since it’s going away with the new format of the show. So this is a big moment; lots of lasts today. So I guess let’s jump into it. Here it is: “We see in this chapter that Harry has not shared his experience with the Sorting Hat – how it was going to put him into Slytherin and he chose Gryffindor – with any of his children. So we’re wondering how much of their days at Hogwarts and the fight with Lord Voldemort did Harry, Ron, and Hermione share with their children? And are there any specific details that they keep from them? And also, is Harry a secret-keeping Dumbledore for the next generation?” And try to really focus on the years between the last chapter and the epilogue and not going into the future. We really want to talk about that time of them growing up. So you know what to do for this very last Podcast Question of the Week. Go over to, send us an audioBoom, [or] write a comment, and you could hear yourself on the book recap episode, which… wow, [they] will be the very last Podcast Question of the Week responses. It’s exciting. There you go!

Michael: And don’t worry, listeners, we’ll have plenty of time to talk about Cursed Child. That’ll come up later.

Kat: We will. Indeed.

Alison: Yeah, that will be its own episode.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Michael: Probably. Or maybe a two part episode!

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: Oh!

Alison: There we go.

Laura: You’ll have to pay for it twice.

Michael: Four parts! Two parts for each part.

[Everyone laughs]

Rosie: Explore it act by act!

Michael: [laughs] But we want to make sure and thank Laura for returning to us for this episode. Laura, thank you so much for coming back and contributing all of your amazing thoughts for us.

Laura: Aww, thank you. I was, like I said, so grateful that I was able to be a part of this. And it feels really surreal just thinking… even though it has been, I guess, in the grand scheme of things a pretty short amount of time, it’s been a big formative chunk of my life. And yeah, I’m just really happy to send you guys off, even though you’re still continuing, but in the sense of what we started is finishing.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Kat: Mhm.

Rosie: And that’s a really big deal and I’m glad that we saw it through and that people still listen to it. [laughs]

Michael: If it’s any consolation, it feels like you never left.

Alison and Laura: Aww.

Kat: It’s true.

Michael: Very nice having you on, so thank you, Laura.

Laura: Thank you.

Rosie: And of course, this does mean that it is the end of these chapter by chapter episodes. We’ve got a few little books that we are going to explore in our new format. But that doesn’t mean it’s the end of you guys being on the show. The details of our post-Hallows plans have been released; you can go and check them out on our site. And the “Topic Submit” page, as we said earlier, is on the main site, so do go and suggest your new topics. We really want you guys to be on these episodes to discuss them with us. There’s so much detail and so many theories and so many ideas that you want to explore so come and explore them with us. All you need is that set of Apple headphones or whatever kind of microphone recording equipment that you’ve got. No fancy equipment needed; just a laptop will do and a pair of headphones. Come and join in.

Caleb: And make sure to keep up with us on all of our social media and everything else: Twitter at @AlohomoraMN,, Instagram at @alohomoramn, our main website, of course,, where you can also download our ringtones for free. And you can send an audioBoom for free on; just try to keep it under 60 seconds so we can use it for the show.

Alison: And we just want to remind you one more time that we are on Patreon, so head on over there to check it out at or on our website,, up at the top on our Patreon. You can sponsor us for as low as $1 a month, and we are so grateful to everyone who sponsors us. You guys are amazing and keeping us going. That’s why we’re still here.

[Everyone applauds]

Rosie: Thank you.

Kat: Woo!

Alison: And with that, I guess it’s time for us to board the Hogwarts Express at the end of this story. All is well. I’m Alison Siggard.

Michael: I’m Michael Harle.

Caleb: I’m Caleb Graves.

Kat: I’m Kat Miller.

Rosie: And I’m Rosie Morris. Thank you for listening to Episode 188 of Alohomora!

[Sounds of train engine and whistle blowing]

Kat: Don’t forget to open the Dumbledore!

Alison and Michael: Aww.

Kat: I’m waving; you can’t see it. I’m waving bye to the kids.

[Alison and Rosie laugh]

Michael: You can’t see.

Laura: We’re all waving.

Kat: I’m waving. Bye!

[Michael laughs]

Rosie: We’re done.

Kat: Oh, we’re done!

Alison: That’s it! I can’t believe it.

Laura: Give ourselves a round of applause.

Michael: We’re done.

[Everyone applauds]

Laura: Yay.

[Show music begins]

Michael: But oh my gosh, a few nights ago we had this huge thunderstorm and it woke me up at 3:00 in the morning by this huge boom that just shook the entire apartment complex. And in Albuquerque when we’d have a thunder and lightning storm, if I did wake up, I would enjoy the sound of the rain and I would even open the window and look at the lightning and be like “Oh, how pretty.” But here, the thunder boomed and it shot me straight out of bed. And then I was going to look out the window but the lighting was so bright that I was like, “Oh my God, it’s just outside the window…”

[Kat laughs]

Michael: “… if I open it up it’ll know I’m in here.” And I haven’t felt that way about a storm since when I was a little kid and I’d run into my parents’ bed. I was just like, “This storm is insane! This is not magical and majestical at all!”

[Kat laughs]

Caleb: Welcome to Texas storms.

Laura: Don’t move to New Jersey.

Michael: Yeah, everything is indeed bigger in Texas. The advertisements are true.

[Kat and Michael laugh]

[Prolonged silence]

Kat: Six beautiful voices.

[Michael laughs]

Laura: Yeah, the problem is… that’s the thing, I’m reuniting with you guys as well so I just want to hear about everyone’s lives, and then I’m like, “Oh, right, we’re recording.”

[Everyone laughs]

Michael: Who cares about Harry and his friends?

Laura: Some guy in his glasses to talk about.

[Alison and Michael laugh]

Rosie: The fans have been saying they like the two-hour episodes, so we’re just going to have to do 15 minutes about the chapter and then two hours about us!

[Everyone laughs]

Kat: It’s all right; the after show will be long this week as usual.

Alison: Yeah, there we go.

Michael: That’ll be lovely bonus content. We’ll just update the listeners on our lives or something.

Alison: That’s actually not a bad idea.

Laura: Just like at the end of shows where it goes to a freeze-frame and the credits come up.

[Caleb laughs]

Alison: “So-and-so did this!” [laughs] Sorry. Okay.