If there’s one thing MuggleNet’s global reread of the Harry Potter series, Alohomora!, is known for, it’s diving deep into the tiniest aspects of the books. And I mean deep dive into the smallest details. Listeners and hosts alike love the detail we explore and all of the new ways we’ve found to discuss these books that we love.
One of the most popular and exciting ideas we’ve explored on the show is the idea of ring composition, an academic theory used in literature through the ages from ancient times to today. On three episodes of Alohomora! – 254, 281, 297 – we explored how the entire series forms a ring, with the lessons and moments reflecting throughout. The connections we made across books blew our minds, but as usual, we wanted to go even deeper. How would our understanding of the books change if we looked for ring composition across chapters in each individual novel?
With that, our resident curious Ravenclaw decided that she wanted to explore that idea. Alohomora! already had a full docket of episodes upcoming, and this needed more than just a few more episodes here or there. And so, Full Circle was born. It’s a project of love, curiosity, exploration, and wonder. You’ll be as surprised as we were at all the connections you’ve never seen before that will touch you, make you laugh, and definitely make you think. You’ll never read Harry Potter – and maybe anything else – the same again.
If You're NOT Familiar with Ring Composition...
Before listening to Alohomora!: Full Circle I had never heard of ring composition. I tried looking it up on Google but just got confused and felt that since I didn’t know the basics of what the theory was, I would be lost. I was wrong! Once I listened to Episode 0 and the theory was explained, I was intrigued, especially with how it related to my favorite book series.
I have not reread Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone for a long time, but this was a great way to revisit the book with a new perspective. I like how, at the start of each episode, they give you a summary of each chapter, as I had forgotten a lot of what happened. I love how the podcast does not just talk about the major circles but mainly focuses on the minor ones. My favorite circles are the small moments you don’t realize play an important part, like Harry’s scar hurting near the end of the first book, which ends up being a plot point after Voldemort returns. I had to keep going back every couple of minutes to relisten to parts, as I couldn’t believe some of the connections the hosts made.
You don’t need to know about ring composition or have recently read the books to enjoy the podcast. I found it more surprising when I couldn’t remember everything that happened in each chapter. I am very excited about the circles in the next books, and I highly recommend this podcast, especially if you want to revisit the books with new eyes.
If You're Familiar with Ring Composition...
One of your most cherished stories is probably Harry Potter, isn’t it?
What if I told you that after all this time (pun intended), looking at the Potter story through the lens of something called “ring composition” could show you things you’ve never noticed before? Details that slipped through the cracks on your first, fifth, and twentieth read-throughs of the series?
Ring composition isn’t exactly a friendly-sounding theory, but the idea is simple once you get past the complicated-sounding title – and Alohomora!: Full Circle is the most fun, interesting introduction to ring composition that has ever existed.
Full Circle's Season 1 opens with an Episode 0 that explains the project and the premise so that there’s no need to go frantically Googling to understand what in the world is about to be discussed. And, oh, boy, is there about to be a lot discussed. Get in, witches; we’re going for a ride.
Each episode covers a selection of opposing chapters in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Episode 1 discusses Chapters 1 and 17; Episode 2 discusses Chapters 2, 3, and 16; etc., until the circle – or ring – meets in the middle. The discussion of creator and host Kat Miller (who is also the cocreator of Alohomora!, Full Circle's parent podcast) with this season’s cohost, MuggleCast's Eric Scull, is hilarious and intelligent, ranging from simply pointing out the connections between the chapters to in-depth analysis of why it may or may not matter in the grand scheme of things. I literally cackled out loud with glee when a particularly "hairy" ring came up in Episode 5, the first of dozens that Kat and Eric point out throughout the season.
If you know about ring composition and have heard it applied to the Potter series before, you’re still going to find this podcast entirely entertaining. In a nutshell, the goal of the podcast is to pull out the details that align between each set of comparable chapters, and in that, it succeeds with an Outstanding on their O.W.L.s. I can’t wait for Season 2.
Intrigued? You should be! Before we give you the details on how you can listen to this very unique podcast, take a quick listen to an exclusive sneak peek:
Hopefully, by now, you are shouting, “GIVE ME THIS PODCAST!!” at the top of your lungs, and we will happily oblige. The entirety of Season 1 will be released on November 1 exclusively on Alohomora!‘s Patreon. In addition to the podcast itself, Patrons will gain access to an exclusive Discord server to discuss the show in-depth along with the hosts of each book.
The Alohomora! community is one of the most inclusive, caring, and thoughtful communities within the Potter fandom, and we hope to see you there.
Want more posts like this one? MuggleNet is 99% volunteer-run, and we need your help. With your monthly pledge of $1, you can interact with creators, suggest ideas for future posts, and enter exclusive swag giveaways!
Support us on Patreon