MuggleCast | The #1 Most-Listened to Harry Potter Podcast 3

MuggleCast 49 Transcript

Show Intro

Melissa Anelli [Show Intro with music in background]: Coming to you from our Dance Dance Revolution Center in Las Vegas, Nevada...

Andrew: ...this is MuggleCast Episode 49 for July 25, 2006.

[John Noe cheers in background]

Melissa: No, no, no. I've got a better idea. Forget the show. Let's go do Dance Dance. I challenge you!

Andrew: Melissa, get off my show.

John: Tell me when.

Andrew: Go ahead.

John: Tell me when!

Andrew: Go ahead!

John: See why doe...[laughs] Hold on. See why is the world's number one domain registrant. Enter the code "Ron" to receive 10% off your GoDaddy purchase for the next seven years.

[Everyone laughs]

John: Wait, what do I have - I forget what I have to say.

Andrew: [singing] Visit GoDaddy today!

Jamie: Well, considering Andrew's previous experience with live MuggleCast...

Andrew: Excuse me, Jamie! Excuse me.

Jamie: Yes, Andrew?

Andrew: The music. Don't you hear the music?

Jamie: No.

Eric: What music?

Jamie: I must admit I don't.

Andrew: [turns up the volume and MuggleCast theme plays] You hear it now?

Jamie: Oh yeah, I do. Yeah, I do.

Eric: That's pretty.

Andrew: It is. Isn't this nice? Look, we have music. We're like - like this is the intro we're doing, right now.

Jamie: Ben standing there?

Andrew: Yes.

Eric: See why offers the best domain name registrations worldwide. Enter code "Ron" and you'll receive...

Andrew: Hurry up! It's going to play... [Interrupted by Show Intro music]

Ben: Aaah! Andrew [Intro music in background]: I knew that was going to happen. Hello everyone, and welcome back to the show. I'm Andrew Sims.

Ben: I'm Ben Schoen.

Kevin: I'm Kevin Steck.

Eric: I'm Eric Scull.

[Long pause]

Jamie: Oh, sorry, and I'm Jamie Lawrence. [Phone rings] Okay, sorry.

Andrew: Jamie, you already screwed this up.

[Phone keeps ringing]

Jamie: Yeah, I know, because my phone's just gone. I know that's the worst timing ever. I'm - I'm really, really sorry.

Kevin: You do realize we're live, Jamie, right?

Jamie: I do, I do. And I'm sure that everyone understands. Can I quickly answer this? One second.

Andrew: Eric - I mean Jamie - look at this. Live and he's doing something. All right. Well, before we go anywhere else - first off, Micah Tannenbaum is standing by in the MuggleCast News Center with the past week's top Harry Potter news stories.


Micah: CBBC Newsround conducted an interview earlier this week with Evanna Lynch. In it, she talks about getting the role of Luna, reactions from fans, and much more. There are transcript, video, and pictures available. Be sure to check out for the latest news on the actress playing Luna Lovegood. has posted a report on what Order of the Phoenix director David Yates and Dan Radcliffe had to say at Comic-Con. They talked about Professor Umbridge, Hagrid's half-brother Grawp, and Dan tried to get a word in concerning his big kissing scene. You can check out the full report over on

Cinemark, America's third biggest theater chain, has announced that it plans to use "Real D" technology in 150 theaters by the end of 2007, thus attracting more audiences. Real D enables a single digital projector to beam images that seem to move toward or away from viewers wearing special glasses. While we already know that Order of the Phoenix will be played in IMAX theaters, the company has apparently discussed with Order of the Phoenix producers the idea of including some 3-D scenes in the movie for some non-IMAX theaters.

James Krasner, a professor of English and British Victorian literature at the University of New Hampshire, has spoken out on the recent media frenzy over two characters dying in the seventh book, and why it won't be Harry who meets his death. He said: "Whenever an author's books become very popular in his or her lifetime, as is the case with Rowling, a tug of war starts between the author and the fans about who the characters really belong to. Rowling, like Conan Doyle (creator of Sherlock Holmes), is trying to assert her control. She's reminding us that Harry is her character, not ours; she can kill him if she wants to. Doyle actually did kill off Sherlock Holmes, but Rowling won't go that far because she cares about Harry. Conan Doyle was really sick of Holmes," Krasner says.

TV Guide recently spoke with Jason Issacs, the actor who plays Lucius Malfoy in the Potter films, including the upcoming Order of the Phoenix. Jason spoke about when he will begin filming the fifth film and how exciting he thinks it will be to shoot the battle in the Ministry.

Finally, Sony Classics has confirmed on their official website that Rupert's film, Driving Lessons, will indeed be released on October 13th, 2006.

That's all the news for this July 23, 2006 edition of MuggleCast. Enjoy the live shows!

Andrew: Okay, thank you Micah.

First LIVE Show

Andrew: Well, ladies and gentlemen, welcome to this live MuggleCast. This is our first one. I think everything's going smoothly, except for our server guys told me that the Skype people are a little loud. That would be Jamie, Kevin and Eric. So...

Kevin: Oh.

Eric: Okay!

Andrew: guys just, you know, kick it back a little bit. Don't forget you can submit live feedback: slash live. [laughs] You should change that to apex.html...

Ben: MuggleCast slash live. slash live.

Andrew: submit live feedback to the show, you can submit whatever you want. You can submit Listener Rebuttals, right here, while we're talking, basically. So, if we're discussing something and you're like "Oh, wait a second, hold up," or something - "I disagree with this," feel free to go to slash live, and then we'll get your live feedback and we will respond to it on the air. Not everyone's, but, you know.


Andrew: We have a few announcements this week. First of all, do not forget, - Jamie, please especially you, do not forget to purchase your MuggleCast t-shirt.

Jamie: I must admit, I did almost forget. I haven't heard it for so long.

Andrew: It did.

Jamie: It slipped my mind, you know. I did, yeah.

Andrew: And Lumos 2006 and NYC 2006 are quickly approaching. They are approaching so fast that Ben Schoen is already here. He just walked away from the computer, but he is here with me in the studio this week. Ben, do you like being with me?

Ben: Not really.

Andrew: Why not?

Ben: He smells. The worst breath ever. [Andrew and Kevin laugh]

Andrew: I beg to differ. My voice - er, my breath smells voluptuous.

Jamie: [laughs] Voluptuous.

[Everyone laughs]

Ben: Twenty minutes ago, Andrew and I ran out to a convenient store called WaWa because I had a craving for some diet soda.

Andrew: And...

[Ben laughs]

Jamie: And that's why we started late.

Ben: Yeah. [Laughs]

Andrew: Yes. Actually, yeah, I blame it on Eric. If you're hearing Skype sounds, don't mind that. That's just Skype being you know, Skype.

Ben: Yeah.

Andrew: And, do not forget, the Podcast - well, you can forget, because the [laughs] the Podcast Awards are now - well, nominations are now closed. We will be hearing if we did get a nomination within the next week or so, and then the voting will begin. So stand by for next week's show. We'll let you know if we did pick up a nomination. Then...

Jamie: And also...

Andrew: Yes, Jamie.

Jamie: Don't forget to R.S.V.P. for Lumos and NYC...

Andrew: Oh, I forgot.

Jamie: ...and ten points to anyone who can still remember what R.S.V.P. stands for.

Eric and Ben: RŹpondez, s'il vous plaĒt.

Eric: RŹpondez, s'il vous plaĒt. RŹpondez, s'il vous plaĒt. RŹpondez, s'il vous plaĒt.

Andrew: That might be the...

Ben: Eric. Hey, Eric. Tone it down a notch, let's tone it down.

[Andrew laughs]

Jamie: You don't get 50 points for saying it three times.

Ben: One final...

Eric: Oh, yay.

Andrew: Let's not get into this.

Ben: One final announcement we have this week is vote for MuggleCast on Podcast Alley.

Andrew: Right!

Ben: Right now, if there are 150 people listening, that'll give us enough votes to overtake PotterCast - not PotterCast, to overtake everyone forever, okay - to put us at No. 1. So you go ahead and vote for MuggleCast on Podcast Alley today. Please.

Kevin: That slip is going to cost you, Ben.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: And if you do...

Ben: I know.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: What'd you slip? What'd you say?

Jamie: You're going downhill.

[Andrew laughs]

Kevin: Oh, you're so going downhill.

Andrew: This is live, folks! Well, actually, I think we might edit the live one just a little bit.

Ben: Maybe.

Andrew: I don't know. It depends on what we say.

Kevin: You really can't. Don't edit.

Andrew: If we're the top Podcast on Podcast Alley at the end of the month, Eric, what are you going to do for the listeners?

Eric: I don't know. I said I'd sing, but I'm not sure about that anymore.

Andrew: What?

Jamie: He's going to stop talking for five minutes.

Eric: No, no, no. Save gas money, seriously. Yeah, save gas money.

Jamie: Yes, say yes, man!

Eric: Oh, by the way, can I do an update about that?

Andrew: Sure. Real quick.

Eric: Okay, we're just going to - anybody who's interested in saving gas money, I call you the "Gas Guzzlers." We're going to meet in the lobby of the J. W. Marriott on July 27th after Harry and the Potters, which will be around 10:15 pm on that night. So, that's it. Just meet me there and bring your Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Thank you!

Andrew: And also, we have...

Jamie: Eric, that was good.

Eric: Thank you.

Andrew: Yeah, that was awful quick. That was sweet, thanks.

Kevin: It was, yeah.

Book Reading Giveaway

Andrew: Also, we have a special giveaway exclusively for our live visitors right now.

Ben: Just for you.

Andrew: We are giving away one ticket to night two of JK Rowling's reading with Stephen Fry and John Irving.

Ben: No.

Jamie: Sorry, no, it's Stephen King.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: Stephen King! I always screw that up. [Laughs] I always screw that up. Stephen King and John Irving - right this very second. Actually, we're going to give it away at the end of the show - but to enter, and this is for the live listeners only - go to our live feedback and type in "I want to win the JK Rowling book reading ticket." [laughs]

Jamie: Dot com.

Andrew: Dot com. No, go to and put in the little body of your feedback, "I want to win the JK Rowling giveaway ticket." It is for the Orchestra 3 Section, Row FF, Seat 304. The seat is really nice, and this contest is sponsored by JKR's Army, which is a group on to help protect you guys from being scammed online, and you can get to their page by going to the Merchandise link on the Nav Bar on We'll have a link in the Show Notes of course, but to go there, submit it. And then, at the end of the show when we have live call-ins we will ask one of our callers to pick a number between one and the amount of entries that we receive, and then...

Jamie: Four million.

Andrew: ...that person - it will be four million. An then that person will receive the ticket. They will have to pick it up at the live - nice welcome, whoever just signed on, on AOL.

Eric: Oh.

Andrew: [laughs] They will have to pick it up at our live Podcast in New York City, which is on August 2nd. Oh - oh my gosh, we already got one feedback. Go, click it. This is - Dana from Wisconsin wants it. She's our first entry so far.

Ben: And remember, you actually have to be in New York City on August 2nd.

Andrew: Yeah, you have to be there to pick up the ticket. [Laughs]

Ben: Otherwise, it won't work very well.

Andrew: Yeah, so good luck to everyone.

Listener Rebuttals - Room of Requirement

Andrew: Listener Rebuttals this week: our first one comes from Jordan, 15, of Massachusetts:


"In Episode 48, the Room of Requirement was a very heated topic, but when discussing it I think you may have forgotten one thing: That the Room will change into a room that you need. It is not like a genie where you get wishes and can ask for anything. The Room does not give you objects, but a room full items in order to obtain what you desire. For example, if Harry walked by the Room wanting to find Horcruxes, he would not be able to wish for the Horcruxes, but he may be able to ask for a room equipped with things to track them down, or to map out places where they could be. The Room would not be able to hand over the Horcruxes themselves. Therefore, I think that the Room will give you a room whether it's to hide something, to use the bathroom, or to study in. The Room wouldn't give you an A on your paper, but tools to study with to achieve that A. Love to hear your thoughts. Thanks."

Andrew: That's a great example, and we got a TON of feedback on the Room of Requirement with last week's Episode 58, because people seem to think that we missed this huge point that Jordan just pointed out. So thanks to her for that. Another feedback comes from Erica, 13, of Virginia.

Jamie: Ooo!

Andrew: What, Jamie?

Eric: What, Jamie?

Jamie: Can we talk about it? [Laughs]

Eric: I think it's really cool. It's a good interpretation on what you would get if you asked for a certain room, and we did miss that. I think that was cool.

Jamie: Don't you think it's kind of similar to the discussion we had about the Mirror?

Kevin: Definitely.

Jamie: As in it has limitations and...

Kevin: Yeah, that's what I was going to say.

Jamie: It can't give you exactly what you want, what you really, really want, obviously. But yeah. Ben [Sings]: Give you everything that you want...

Jamie: I've lost where I'm going, completely.

Andrew: That's okay. This is live.

Kevin: Well, I was going to say that although the Room may be able to provide you with the things that may help you, I believe it still has limitations to how far it can help you.

Jamie: Yeah, but if you - if you, like, wanted a steak...

[Kevin laughs]

Jamie: Would you find a cow and a knife and a barbecue, or would you find a steak?

[Eric laughs]

Jamie: 'Cause I think you'd find a steak, to be fair.

Andrew: Well, I don't think the Room of Requirement is to provide people's steaks.

Jamie: But if you're starving and you really, really, really, really want one.

Eric: I donít know, let's open that one up to the listeners. [laughs]

Andrew: Well, maybe they'll show how to make the steak. [laughs] Not give you a cow, but...

Jamie: Free your mind, Andrew!

Eric: A cow and a knife? I don't know.

Andrew: Maybe they'll get a butcher or something. Anyway, before we go on to the next Rebuttal, we got a lot of feedback, actually.

Ben: E-mail.

Andrew: These are people saying they want the ticket. I think we're up to - how many? We're getting them by the second. We just went from 81 to 94.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: I think the feedback's working. Next Listener Rebuttal comes from Erica, 13, of Virginia also in response to the Room of Requirement:

"Hi MuggleCast, this is Erica, 13, of Virginia. My Rebuttal is regarding the Room of Requirement. Ben said something about not being able to be in the Room of Requirement at the same time unless the door's open. Well listening to the audio CD's of Half-Blood Prince, it says that Professor Trelawney heard a male cheering for doing something successful when she went into the Room to hide her bottles. Does this mean it is possible for people to see different rooms or be in the Room at the same time?"

Ben: I'm kind of confused about what she's meaning. I don't know. p>Eric: I think she means Draco Malfoy, like when Trelawney went in to hide her sherry bottles and she entered.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: But I thought it was the same room that Draco was in.

Jamie: Yeah, exactly. I was going to say that. Didn't she just find that huge room and she just hid the bottles in there?

Eric: Yeah, because he - well, no. I think it was a smaller room because Draco - like, she heard him, but he turned around then and did his darkness powder thing.

Jamie: Oh yeah.

Eric: So that was the same room that they were in.

Ben: One little update here: Leila, please stop submitting that you want to win the JK Rowling tickets.

Andrew: [laughs] We get it!

Ben: The more times you submit it does not mean your going to have more chances to win. So...

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: This is not a random drawing. Well, it sort of is, but we're going to be able to tell. Yeah, so only submit one, please. Next listener rebuttal.

Listener Rebuttals - More Room of Requirement

Ben: This comes from Chris, age 23, from Chicago, once again the Room of Requirement. "Filch uses it whenever he runs out of cleaning products and what-not. It makes a store cupboard of products that he takes out and uses. So yes, you can take things out."

Jamie: But doesn't this kind of contradict that you...

Ben: Last week we were debating over...what?

Jamie: That you can't make something from nothing. So if he takes them out, can he keep them? Can he take them up to his room and store them there and use them again, or do you have to put them back?

Ben: What I mean is that it comes from somewhere.

Eric: Yeah, well.

Ben: If that make sense.

Eric: If Filch keeps taking stuff out - I don't know, that's really weird. But if he keeps - if he runs out of supplies and then goes and gets supplies, maybe they don't need to make something from nothing.

Andrew: Well, the problem with this rebuttal was that he didn't provide an exact page and I meant to mention that before we read this.

Eric: Weren't we inclining...

Andrew: Anyway - go ahead.

Eric: I'm sorry.

Andrew: No, go ahead.

Eric:Last week, weren't we inclining to say that it was a little bit weird that, you know, that there's like this giant stock room that it can only pull from. So, did we decide whether it has to come from somewhere or not? Could it just...

Jamie: I don't think we reached a conclusion, just like we never do.

[Eric and Jamie laugh]

Eric: Because that would be a really, really big room of stuff the Room of Requirement could actually use. I don't think that would make sense. Maybe it does come from nothing. Hmmm.

Main Discussion - Magical Schools

Andrew: Alright, so now we are going to move on to our main discussion this week. I know that we just lost a connection, so I think everyone is going to be reconnecting right now. But Jamie, you put together this fantastic main discussion on magical schools.

Jamie: Okay. This came from the fact that I thought - I remember Jo said in an interview that there were a thousand students that went to Hogwarts, and I remember there was quite a lot of discussion about this. And people thought it didn't seem right because of how many people you saw in the film with how many people it talked about in the books; and everyone reached a conclusion, or it was a general consensus, that there were 300 people at the school. So if we assume that there are 300 people at Durmstrang and Beauxbatons as well, then that's 900 magical children in the world, and that doesn't seem very many considering how big the magical community is. There's a Ministry for Magic here, there's probably - it's likely that there's one abroad as well, in several countries. So I think - what's happening here? Are we missing something, or is it just an error in the books?

Kevin: Well, I think there's an inconsistency with the - I guess it's sort of like an illusion of a lot of people, but it's not necessarily as many as we think.

Jamie: No, that's not...

Kevin: I mean, you have to remember that when we saw the Quidditch World Cup and they showed all of these wizarding people, it was from Harry's perspective. So from Harry's perspective, there were loads of people, but loads of people to Harry could be 2,000 people.

Ben: Yeah, these definitely aren't the only three schools.

Kevin: Thatís correct, yeah.

Ben: Because there has to be a school in America.

Jamie: It's impossible - yeah.

Kevin: But it would be fitting to think that wizards aren't all that commonplace. They only make up a very small portion of the world community, so you would think that there weren't very many.

Jamie: Is that true, though? That wouldn't make them small.

Kevin: I would assume so. You have to remember they're small enough that they can blend in and...

Jamie: Well, they're clever enough to blend in, though. It could just be there are a lot of them, and they're spread through out the world. But they're - after however many centuries of blending in with people, they can work it pretty well. But I just can't believe that there are any less than a normal sort of human population.

Eric: Yeah. I think so.

Jamie: It doesn't seem right.

Eric: I agree with Jamie. I don't think JKR, throughout the whole series, has ever kept it on a small scale.

Jamie: Right.

Eric: If you look at it, the wizards have their own rock band, The Weird Sisters. They have Celestina Warbek. They have their own love songs. They have their own radio station.

Kevin: Yeah, but thatís part of any community.

Eric: Well, one of the things that does support the smaller community aspect or the scale of things is that Hogsmeade is the only apparently all wizarding - you know...

Jamie: Yeah.

Eric: Or was that in Britain or in the world? Was it just...?

Jamie: That was Britain, I think.

Kevin: Britain.

Eric: Britain, okay.

Jamie: Well, doesn't that just suggest that wizards are blending in with humans more and that's just one where they can all...

Kevin: Yeah, but thatís what I'm saying. I mean, the more wizards you have blending in with quote-unquote "normal people," you're going to draw attention just by doing that. I mean, you have to remember - look at Ron's house. It is definitely a wizarding house.

Jamie: Yeah.

Kevin: And if you had millions of houses through out Britain that were like that, you would think that at least some people would, you know, take notice.

Eric: Especially...

Kevin: I think it's small scale enough so that they blend in to the point where no one notices.

Jamie: Yeah.

Eric: Especially because wizards don't seem to be the most up-to-date on how to blend in with Muggles. You know, it seems there would have to be a small population, because otherwise there would be no reason why Muggles shouldn't know. But then again...

Jamie: Of course there is, of course there is. There are loads of reasons.

Eric: The wizards always do boast about how little the Muggles actually see.

Jamie: Exactly, and...

Eric: How much they notice.

Jamie: But if the - you couldn't expect the Muggles to live with the wizards in harmony, because they'd want magical solutions to their problems.

Eric: True. I mean - right.

Jamie: They'd want to see spells. It takes a wizard to understand that it isn't that kind of "wow" magic. Its a lifestyle.

Kevin: Either that, or they just wouldn't understand it.

Jamie: Yeah, exactly.

Eric: There's a difference between living along side and knowing about it. I mean, I think wizards could live amongst Muggles without the Muggles actually knowing what they were.

Ben: At least, they're doing that now aren't they.

Kevin: Yeah, but see, thatís what I find hard to believe, because just for example, Harry and Ron with the invisibility car.

Eric: Mmmm.

Kevin: That was one pair of kids that made themselves public in front of all these Muggles.

Ben: But would it uphold in the whole Department of Ministry.

Kevin: What would happen if you had millions of children doing that?

Eric: Hmmm.

Jamie: But it's like...

Eric: It's kind of a little bit too careless.

Kevin: Exactly. The whole story caters to the fact that there's a small community and not some huge uncontrollable beast, you know?

Ben: Right, but there's a whole department within the Ministry for that.

Kevin: Yes, I understand that, but can...

Ben: And the Obliviators that's dedicated to preventing that from happening...

Kevin: I understand.

Ben: ...preventing it from getting out.

Kevin: Yes, I understand you could control, but two million...

Eric: Well, again - again Kevin, there is a Salem Witch School that JKR mentions in - I think its either Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them or, sorry, Quidditch Through the Ages, something like that - Quidditch Through the Ages, all these other schools, all these other places. It seems like the sky is the limit with JKR about how expansive her world is. She really wants to make it this huge, giant world with...

Kevin: Oh yes. I'm not arguing that they're spread out, but what I'm saying is...

Eric: Yeah, I understand.

Kevin: ...they're not in high enough concentration in anywhere in the world that twenty people in a single Ministry cannot take care of it. Do you know what I'm saying?

Eric: Which is interesting - I mean, I know what your saying, but I'm just - with having a...

Kevin: Because mistakes are bound to happen, and the more people you have, the more mistakes are bound to happen.

Eric: Right.

Ben: Well, here's what I think.

Kevin: I find it hard to believe that a single department can take care of a million people like the scale is.

Eric: But what's interesting to me is that Hogwarts - is Hogwarts the school for everybody in Britain to go to, every wizard in Britain, and is Beauxbatons the only French school for everybody in France to go to? You know, all the wizards. Is that how that works?

Kevin: I'm not really sure if its... Has she ever truly distinguished?

Eric: Because - well, we've seen people like Seamus Finnigan come from a distinctive region in Britain or Wales. I don't know exactly where, but it seemed that all of - pretty much Britain, all of England, was represented at Hogwarts and all of - so it would make sense that if you're a wizard and if you live in that country, if you live in that area, you would go to Hogwarts, and if you live in France you would go to Beauxbatons. So the question is though, about the small population thing, Hogwarts only holding either 300 or even 1,000 - my high school holds 1,200 people, and thatís just in a few maybe square miles of school. You know, Britain is bigger than Burkes' County. So you'd think there'd be a lot more people.

Jamie: Don't forget...

Kevin: Well I think...

Jamie: Go on Kevin.

Kevin: Oh. What I was going to say is I think that there are quite a few wizards, I'm not arguing that. But I'm saying that they're spread out throughout billions of people in the world, and they're not in high enough concentration to say, "Hey! We're wizards." And actually, we had some feedback from Kim that just said "At the Quidditch World Cup, the stadium held hundreds of thousands of people, and it sold out."

Jamie: Yeah. But I was going to...

Kevin: How - okay, continue. Sorry.

Jamie: It's okay. I was just going to say that in Goblet of Fire, we saw the Bulgarian minister, so it's clear that the Ministry of Magic is just a domestic thing.

Kevin: A small subsidiary, yeah.

Jamie: Well, no. It's just a domestic thing. There's no 'Wizarding World Government'. It's just like there's one on each continent, country, so there's clearly a population in each country. I just think there's got to be more than a few thousand wizards, because they'd be close to extinction.

Kevin: But...

Jamie: If you think the war between Voldemort and the Order of the Phoenix has got to branch, that has to include a few thousand, including people who fight on a sort of rim, just in that. So I just don't think that a few thousand's that reasonable of an estimate.

Ben: There has to be tons.

Kevin: I wouldn't say that a few thousand is a reasonable estimate, but I wouldn't say that they're anywhere compared to the normal, average person's population. How many people are living in London right now?

Jamie: About 8 million.

Kevin: Exactly. And how many from London are going to Hogwarts, which is the closest school to it?

Jamie: No - loads, yeah. I completely agree, but do you think that just means that there's eight per country?

Kevin: What was that? You broke out.

Jamie: Sorry. Do you think that just means there's one school per country?

Kevin: Maybe not necessarily, but all I'm saying is that if there's eight million people in London, and there's how many have been named in Hogwarts? 900 or 1000?

Eric: Yeah.

Kevin: Imagine eight to one thousand - eight million compared to a thousand children.

Eric: That's like looking at...

Ben: Its also important to remember that in one of the books, Draco's dad was thinking about sending him to Durmstrang, so they're not required to go to the school that's within their own country.

Kevin: Oh absolutely, yes.

Eric: But at the same time...

Kevin: It impairs them in a demographic way.

Andrew: And I still...

Eric: And I wouldn't think if Hogwarts didn't fit you, I wouldn't think that you would have to be sent to Germany or Bulgaria to go to school.

Kevin: And I would think that's a lot like current public schools where your first - the normal school to go to is the closest school to you.

Eric: Yeah.

Kevin: But every once in awhile, you get a few parents that don't want their kid going to that school and...

Eric: Yeah.

Kevin: ...they pull them out. But still, I mean, that ratio is still there. It's a thousand students to eight million people in just London alone. We're not talking about surrounding areas.

Eric: Yeah. So that number seems incredibly off.

Kevin: Exactly, and that's what I'm saying. I think that there's a significant body of wizards, but I don't think there are huge amounts. I mean, it's still a very large ratio.

Eric: I still think it has to be above a thousand - I mean just - like you said, it's...

Kevin: Well, what I'm saying is how many people are in the world? You're looking at -

Eric: Oh, 6.5 billion.

Kevin: Exactly.

Jamie: Yeah, 6.5 billion, about.

Kevin: So out of 6.5 billion, if you do that ratio, you're looking at a couple million wizards.

Eric: But if that's correct - but I don't think it is. I can't understand why there's only one thousand children in - I mean, how many children are there in England under the age of 17, in all of Britain? It's probably a significant amount in the millions. And for only a thousand to be - I just think that number is off, I think that number is incredibly off. I think there would be - if Hogwarts is the only school in England, there would be a lot more kids there.

Live Feedback - Marrying Muggles

Andrew: Hold up, because Michael from Baltimore, Maryland submitted some live feedback here: "There's also the fact that wizards and witches have had to marry Muggles or they would have died off, so maybe the population of wizard children isn't that big. So it's very possible that Hogwarts could hold all wizard kids in Britain."

Ben: And it's also important to remember that there is also Muggleborns that are being born too.

Jamie: Yeah.

Andrew: I said that.

Ben: No you didn't! You said that they're...

Andrew: Oh. [laughs]

Jamie: But then perhaps you should accept - you know, instead of making a distinction between wizards and witches and Muggles, you should divide it by people who know and are aware of the magical world. And those that don't - obviously that brings you into a gray area when you come to the Dursleys, who are clearly completely aware of it but completely hate it. But there's obviously a complete difference between a Muggle who hasn't ever experienced the magical world, and Petunia who's grown up with a witch but doesn't have any magical powers herself.

Kevin: Yeah.

Live Feedback - Voldemort's Reign of Terror

Andrew: Another interesting live feedback right now - Sarah and Laura from Austin, Texas. They say: "You have to take into consideration that the kids at Hogwarts now were born during Voldemort's reign of terror. People may have been reluctant to have children during a very unsafe time."

Jamie: Yes, good point.

Eric: Yeah but, how reluctant? I mean it's not that we're seeing Hogwarts having all these empty classrooms because everybody's parents stopped having kids around that time. If anything, Molly Weasley said that people were rushing into families and starting their families now - or at the time of Voldemort's terror - just in case there was no tomorrow.

Jamie: Yeah.

Ben: But it's also... What I think is interesting too is how do you - is there like a certain selection criteria in order to get you into Hogwarts? Because in Half-Blood Prince we see Dumbledore mention that Voldemort's name was down since birth. And do you have to be a certain caliber wizard for that quill to actually write your name down, or is it all the wizarding children in Britain?

Kevin: Well, I would think...

Ben: Because that might explain how there are only 900 students who are going there because it may be more discriminatory about who to admit and who they don't.

Kevin: I don't - yeah, but I don't think they discriminate. I think the main criteria is being able...

Eric: That you...

Kevin: cast magic - use magic.

Eric: Yeah, I mean...

Kevin: They have a responsibility to make sure you as a kid, you're not going to expose yourself as a wizard.

Jamie: Yeah.

Kevin: Because then you become different, you attract attention, and it's very bad. So I believe that's the only criteria, someone who can cast magic.

Live Feedback - Homeschooling Wizards

Jamie: Elizabeth brings up - Elizabeth from Poulsbo, WA... Where's that? Don't know.

Ben: Wisconsin? No... WA - Washington!

Jamie: Washington, yeah. She brings up the point that: "Who knows, perhaps there is a large population of homeschooling wizards." I think [laughs] - I've got this in the show notes, and I think that that could actually be. Because surely their parents can teach them how to wave a wand?

Kevin: Yeah, but also, you'd have to compare it to current homeschool students here. I mean, how many kids out of a school district are homeschooled?

Jamie: Yeah, but don't forget...

Ben: That may be different in the magical world, though.

Jamie: But the...

Ben: Man, I think that - I'm not - stop homeschooling kids. I think they're less likely to be homeschooled in the wizarding world, because it seems to me that in order to become - to get a better job, like it is in most schools, you have to go to a good school to get a good job.

Eric: Oh.

Ben: And if you're homeschooled, especially where you're just having your parents teach you magic, they may not be skilled in terms of Potions, Transfiguration, Charms and all that - enough to be able to teach you.

Live Feedback - Every Wizarding Child Goes To Hogwarts

Kevin: I just got a live feedback from Claire in France saying, "JKR says every wizarding child goes to Hogwarts on her website."

Eric: Yeah, and that's really weird.

Andrew: There you go Ben.

Kevin: And I believe the reason...

Ben: Well, I screwed up.

Kevin: And I think the reason for that is that there are restrictions legally within the wizarding world on where and when children can use magic.

Jamie: But do you think that the homeschooling aspect - I was going to say that obviously, as you were saying, Kevin, it seems that the magical population are - I don't want to say oppressed a race, but they clearly are this sort of non-evident race on Earth.

Kevin: Yeah, they...

Jamie: So, I mean, obviously, I'm sure there's some...

Kevin: They don't want to impose themselves.

Jamie: Yeah, exactly. But more than that, I think - do you think that some wizarding parents could think, "Well, I don't want my child going out and fraternizing with Muggles," when you don't know what could happen to him if they found out that he's a wizard. Obviously that doesn't count at Hogwarts...

Kevin: Oh, you mean like someone segregating...

Jamie: ...but they could get a bit worried about him.

Kevin: Like segregation due to being a wizard?

Jamie: Yeah, yeah perhaps.

Kevin: Well, I think that's also a reason why the kids do go to school. Because the wizarding community - just because you're a Muggle, doesn't mean that you can't have a non-Muggle child.

Jamie: Yeah.

Kevin: So I think the whole point of educating the children in the school is trying to prevent that segregation of the population.

Jamie: Yeah, I think that's right.

Kevin: I mean, you have to remember, they may be wizards, but they're still human.

Jamie: Yeah.

Kevin: And, you know, there's no boundaries with who you're going to love, so...

Wizarding Primary School?

Eric: Huh. So guys, I have two more topics I'd like to at least suggest for this about schooling in the wizarding world. Is that okay?

Jamie: Yep!

Andrew: We're all...

Eric: Okay, cool. One of them is we hear that, at least with Hogwarts, kids are contacted at the age of eleven, and from the age eleven they go to school. Now, Harry himself went to - not Stilmahod, but whatever - primary school?

Jamie: Yeah, primary school.

Eric: But up until around I guess it was fourth grade, fifth grade, something like that. Now at Hogwarts, they of course teach all magical classes, meaning things like Pre-Algebra, Algebra, Calculus, Trigonometry, things like that, wizards aren't ever taught. So I'm thinking and I'm going through the books reading, and every time I read the books you have to realize that actually, as far as regular Muggle world goes, Harry and pretty much anybody...

Jamie: Previous experience before it - yeah.

Eric: ...only really has a fourth or fifth grade education.

Kevin: That's true, yeah.

Jamie: Oh yeah, definitely.

Eric: You know, formally.

Kevin: Yeah, but you have to see the reasoning behind that. For the same reason why wizards don't make themselves apparent within the population - it's because they have somewhat of an advantage over the normal population.

Eric: Meaning they just know - they're doing so many...

Kevin: Exactly. They're using something that can help them practically, just like in high school you're taught things that can help you practically. You know -

Eric: Kind of like the difference between getting a degree and studying a trade.

Kevin: Exactly.

Eric: OK.

Kevin: That's the way I view it, at least.

Other Schools And Their Role Against Voldemort

Eric: Okay. Now what about - we talked about other schools kind of in other countries, but this whole thing about small populations of wizards - what do you think they're doing about the war on Voldemort? Especially the Americans over at I guess Salem Witchcraft in Massachusetts, or whatever. Here's this guy who's supposed to be the worst wizard, worst dark wizard ever, and he's not really exactly affecting America just yet, but what do you think these other countries are doing? Because if there is a small wizard population, I don't think there's really this full scale effort against Voldemort or that the Americans would even be concerned about it...

Kevin: Well, I would...

Eric: ...except to say that maybe it might one day may come to us.

Kevin: I would assume that it would be something similar to what we do nowadays in current world events, which is show our support through...

Ben: Invade them?

Kevin: ...people and supplies and such like that.

Jamie: Diplomacy.

Kevin: Yep. It'd be because - if they are, like Jamie said, "domestic entities", then there has to be some sort of diplomatic ties between them to bring them together, and I'm assuming that's what they use to get help and provide help.

Eric: Hmmm. So do you think we'll be seeing a lot more of other country fighters against Voldemort in Book Seven? Like where it's kind of this whole world scale effort against Voldemort? Because the thing is, whereas Book Seven needs to be this Harry-Voldemort thing, it also kind of should be a whole world war, basically, put into perspective. Or do you...

Ben: Well, there needs to be cooperation on multiple levels.

Kevin: Also...

Ben: There has to be cooperation with the houses, there has to be cooperation between purebloods, half-bloods, Mudbloods - and of course there has to be international magical cooperation, which is what Goblet of Fire was all about. Because you have the French people, you have the Bulgarians, and it's all about uniting to be one.

Eric: I like that Ben.

Ben: United we stand, divided we fall.

Andrew: Awww.

Kevin: You have to remember that magic really has no boundaries. Just because Voldemort is in England now doesn't mean he can't apparate to the United States.

Eric: No, no, that makes sense. Yeah.

Kevin: You know, so...

Jamie: Can I quickly reply to a live feedback from Erica from Australia?

Kevin: Sure.

Live Feedback - More To Magic

Jamie: She says that when I said "wave a wand" - she thinks, "There's more to magic than waving a wand and how much would their parents be able to teach?" I agree completely, but I think that it's kind of like how - I think to wizards, teaching Transfigurations, Charms, everything is just - is parallel to teaching Maths, English in the Muggle world. But also, from what I've personally seen at Hogwarts in the books and the films, teaching is more - it seems to be more like a university atmosphere where you just get on and do it yourself and it's practice. So, I think if someone's committed, they could probably learn to do basic things at home. And also, somebody asked if there's a wizard college - a few people have asked that - and I think Jo said that there definitely wasn't. After NEWTS, that's it.

Eric: Well, take a look at the mindset of the Ministry of Magic as far as underage magic goes. Remember, Dumbledore told Harry - in Book Six he cleared this up, which was helpful - that if you are an underage wizard, you can actually use magic underage if you're in a household. If you live in a wizarding household, they can't detect magic. So it would seem that law would support homeschooling because a parent could tell their child, "Practice this," and then their child could practice, and the Ministry wouldn't know any different. So homeschooling wouldn't technically be against wizarding law, or at least nobody would - you wouldn't keep getting letters saying, "Stop doing these charms, you're underage."

Jamie: Yeah.

Kevin: Well that's one of the reasons why I said that homeschooling probably isn't very viable for that community due to the laws and restrictions placed upon the domestic government.

Eric: Wait, you're saying it is viable or isn't?

Kevin: It is not.

Eric: Oh. But why? Because they couldn't tell if you live in a wizard family.

Kevin: Because...

Eric: Dumbledore said that the parents are responsible. He says it's the parent's responsibility to control their children.

Kevin: Okay, I'll give you a great example.

Eric: Okay.

Kevin:You go to college currently to learn what calculus or programming or art or whatever you're going to learn, right?

Eric: Mhm.

Kevin: Why would you go to college when you could turn around and go to your parents and have them teach you that?

Eric: Because the college is more educated.

Kevin: Exactly, because your parents cannot provide the level of education.


Eric: Well yeah, but that's an argument with homeschooling is whether the institution is better or not. But I can't see the wizarding world - I mean, I'm saying wizarding education, it seems like it would be a lot better in schools than at home, especially because of the diverse branches of magic that parents certainly would not explore all of with their kids. They would teach their kids what they felt they would need to know. Just like ancient civilizations with trades. You learn one single trade, and your whole family was in it forever. I mean, I...

Kevin: Yeah.

Eric: Wizard schooling would be better, but I'm saying that wizarding home schooling - if it is possible, I certainly don't think that they would have - that they would get course books sent home. Something like the home schooling situation here, but at the same time you could still probably teach kids. I don't know, are we...

Kevin: I don't - I honestly don't see someone able to teach all of the - all of the technical knowledge on the...

Eric: Then that goes back to the thing. If kids are not allowed to be home schooled - if kids are not allowed to be home schooled, then what school do they go to? Because if Hogwarts only has a thousand people, that either means there's basically no wizards throughout the world or it means that there's an inconsistency.

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#244 (November 20th, 2011): For the first time ever, MuggleCast has a DVD commentary! Watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 on DVD with us. We'll comment on each and every scene - it's as if we're in your living room watching alongside you!

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