Episode 162: DH 12 – Death Eatery

We are already 1/3 of the way through Deathly Hallows with this week’s discussion on Chapter 12, “Magic is Might”. Join hosts Caleb, Kat, Alison, and guest Dana as they break into the Ministry of Magic in the most disgusting ways imaginable.

Happy Halloween from Alohomora!

On Episode 162, we discuss…

→ Episode 161 Recap: Is Hermione keeping a secret?; Lupin isn’t a coward; Lupin has a history of cowardice
→ PQOTW Responses
→ Not going back to Hogwarts
→ Would Dumbledore approve the use of Harry’s visions?
→ Did the Trio do enough prep?
→ Wizards are just gross!
→ Question of the Week
→ Check out the Alohomora! store

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  • On the subject of why Snape was selected to be the new headmaster I always felt he made sure he was placed in the post. Not that I feel it took much effort. I think Voldemort would’ve felt it was a natural choice not only because Snape already had a well established place on the staff but for many of the reasons the hosts mentioned.

    I think Snape and Dumbledore likely had this planned as a contingency in the event that the Death Eaters took over the school so that Snape, in his own twisted way, could protect the students (particularly any Muggle Born and Half Bloods that returned.)

    Dumbledore knew Snape wasn’t exactly a kind teacher but he also knew Snape would never knowingly let a student be murdered and I have no doubt that all of the students we end up seeing in the Room of Requirement later would’ve been dead had a regular Death Eater been put in charge.

    • ISeeThestrals

      The alternative would have been Snape sneaking around in the shadows trying to keep watch on everyone. Snape wouldn’t have been able to help Harry if that was the case.

      • Exactly. He’d have been too preoccupied lurking around to send his patronus so Harry could find the sword. Not to mention he’d have never had the access to Phineas Black’s portrait to even know what was going on with the trio at all.

        • ISeeThestrals

          I think Snape could’ve still found time to send the patronus. But yeah, he definitely would have lost access to Phineas’s portrait, as well as Dumbledore’s.

          • He may have been able to find the time but without the portrait access he wouldn’t have known when or where to send it. So that is really important.

            But this makes me wonder if not Snape in the job who? Voldemort was busy with other things so he wouldn’t have been able to do the job himself so who else would he haven entrusted the job of headmaster/mistress? And how would they have used the access to the various portraits (including Dumbledore’s)?

          • ISeeThestrals

            If not Snape, I’d imagine one of Voldemort’s cruelest followers. Off the top of my head I’m thinking one of the Carrows as I haven’t kept up with every Death Eater. Maybe if Lucius hadn’t fallen out of Voldemort’s good graces he might have been given the position. Had that happened, I wonder how Draco would have reacted to that. He’s not doing so well considering how the family name has fallen and he’s under Voldemort’s orders. Would Draco have been a little less doubtful of Voldy if it put his father in charge of the school?
            Maybe the question is would a different headmaster have thought of messing with the portraits. Do we know if Voldemort or any of the other death eaters ever thought to question Dumbledore’s portrait for hidden info?

          • I don’t think we do know that. I’m sure it wouldn’t have hotten them very far though considering I’m sure most wizards know that a portrait has a limited bank of knowledge. I’d think Voldemort would’ve asked a few questions but when he didn’t get the answers he wanted he’d move on. It’s not like he could torture the portrait.

          • ISeeThestrals

            When you said torture the portrait, I thought back to ‘Prisoner’ where Sirius slashed the portrait of the Fat Lady. Now I’m wondering what would happen if someone tried to attack Dumbledore’s portrait.

          • Good question. I feel like he’d have to hide in order to keep the portrait from being destroyed.

          • MartinMiggs

            Voldemort is not interested in what Dumbledore has to say or a portrait of him. He believes he has already defeated him by assassinating him. I don’t have book 7 right now at this moment but the way he was talking about Dumbledore with Harry at the end of the book makes me believe he is past thinking about Dumbledore

          • Ooh, yes. Other than Snape, I think Lucius is the perfect choice – on the board of governors, pure blood, very respected in the eyes of the powerful and rich…

          • MartinMiggs

            no longer respected though

          • Of course.

          • Mypatronusisadoberman

            I think Snape was really the only choice for this position. Some cruel Death Eater with no interest in the welfare of the children or in education really could not have been bothered to run the school effectively, and I think there would have been a true rebellion at hand, not just a small group of brave students hiding in the Room of Requirement. And none of the other teachers would have served as the type of headmaster Voldy would have required. Perhaps he might have tried the Imperius curse, but I have a feeling that would not have worked.

  • MartinMiggs

    Im playing a bit of devil’s advocate here and say Lupin wasn’t as great if a DADA expert like Kat suggested. He is a fun and engaging teacher which helps the students learn more but doesn’t necessarily mean he has a great depth of knowledge in this study. Also when he takes the position he (as some have argued) teaches them Care of Magical Creatures basically. We do know he is talented in many ways but I don’t think he knows absolutely everything there is to know about DADA.

    • DoraNympha

      I don’t think he knows about Horcruxes but I do think he knows about a lot of dark stuff, starting with himself as a werewolf, and then having fought in the war long before he got the teaching position. He was on an Order mission even the night Lily and James died, and of all Order members he goes on one of the most Order missions this time around too. Plus, we only saw him teach Harry’s class, the curriculum was a lot of mildly dangerous creatures becuase it was only year 3 level so it was understandably nothing too deadly. I wonder what he taught the 6-7th year students. He taught Harry a Patronus Charm, that’s supposed to be so advanced they don’t learn it at school and even after school only a few wizards can produce one. I think he was fairly great at DADA compared to the majority of wizarding society. Maybe he wasn’t all-knowing like Snape at Potions but I’ve always assumed he knew DADA the best out of all subjects.

      It did frustrate me to no end, though, that year 3 DADA stuff was really mostly just dangerous creatures. I loved the Boggart lesson all the more because it was some wandwork and actually standing up to a Dark Arts thing and doing magic to protect yourself, as opposed to just reading about creatures.

      • I loved those lessons. Anyway, I always felt they were quite hands-on, since he actually had a Grindylow in the room as he taught the Gryffindors about them.

        • DoraNympha

          What I loved was the end-of-year exam. An outdoors DADA obstacle course? So cool.

          • MartinMiggs

            and because we love his teaching style so much it clouds our evaluation of Lupin’s DADA knowledge. He is a bit overrated. Yes he can handle his own but he is no Flitwick, McGonagall, or Snape.

          • DoraNympha

            Believe me, I would have loved to read 20x more about Charms classes or History of Magic other than how bored Harry and Ron were. 🙁

            Where’s the Flitwick Is My Homeboy t-shirt, Alohomora?

    • He was not teaching the students ‘Care’ or simple knowledge of the usual magical creature, its physiology etc, he was teaching them defence against Dark creatures. He wasn’t teaching them about the treasure finding qualities of nifflers or how wandmakers use bowtruckles to find appropriate wandwood – he was teaching them how to fight off grindylows, defeat boggarts and keep their heads around red caps.
      Anyway, I believe that, while Lupin could probably become an Auror with his skill, he wouldn’t have been able to be a fantastic one, but he’d get along quite well. (I know he mightn’t have the Herbology/Transfiguration/Potion grades necessary for being an Auror, I’m talking combat)

      • DoraNympha

        Lupin as Auror? Never thought about it! I think you’re right, he may be able to do the job but he might not qualify for or pass the training. He wasn’t very good at Potions, was he? And you need top grades. And also I think you need to be on duty or on call every day, all day.

        However, Lupin and his unemployment: never really understood why he didn’t look for a job that didn’t need attendence every day. He could have been a journalist, a traveling correspondent or something, written a book about werewolves (who else would be a better author? If Lockhart could sell his rubbish… Lupin could have written something kids can actually study from). He probably had something he could cash in that didn’t require getting a 9-5 job, like his DADA skills or knowledge of dark stuff. He could have been the author of a good standard DADA textbook.

        Or give him a part-time job as a chocolate taster for Honeydukes.

        • SnapesManyButtons

          I always thought he couldn’t get a job because nobody would hire a werewolf, but now that I think of it, how would they know? You’d think Dumbledore might have used his contacts to find him a job with a sympathetic person.

          • SlytherinKnight

            That’s where I think the fan theory of Dumbledore only using Lupin as his personal werewolf spy, since while he got Lupin into Hogwarts but couldn’t help Lupin find a job with someone who didn’t care about his disease.

          • DoraNympha

            I mean, Dumbledore did that with everyone, he didn’t mind sacrificing anyone so it’s not excusive to Lupin and Harry but… it’s not entirely unplausible, this theory, sadly. Maybe Dumbledore didn’t help Lupin to a job outside Hogwarts because he didn’t want him to have a good steady job he doesn’t want to leave when the Order needs him? The same way Dumbledore wanted Harry to have a crappy childhood so that when he discovers the wizarding world it’d be his refuge and he’d want to save it? It’s so hard to like Dumbledore when these thoughts come to mind……….

          • DoraNympha

            In OotP Sirius in the fire says Umbridge had pushed through some legislation that makes it impossible for Remus to get a job. So that happened right when he resigned, due to being outed as a werewolf to hundreds of students and consequently their parents. The nobody would hire a werewolf aspect came into play after his resignation, that’s right. Before that, however, no one he didn’t tell knew, really, unless they picked up on in, which he avoided by not working anywhere for more than a few weeks, I guess? Well, he’d have had to do this if these were jobs that needed everyday attendence but if he’d just found a job as like a traveling salesman of sorts or some journalism/writing then it wouldn’t necessarily be an issue. (Tbh he could write some random stories and sell it to Muggles as fiction.) Or, yeah, Dumbledore could have worked his people skills and found ONE place where it would be tolerated. Voldemort came back soon, though, so the Order took up his time after that anyway.

            I wonder what that legislation was that made it impossible to hide one’s lycanthropy from an employer. They can’t ask “are you a werewolf? yes or no” to tick in on an application paper, and who wouldn’t lie? But I bet it’s something like a trial period or some training scheduled by the Ministry regularly JUST on full moon day oh wow what are the chances…….. these legislations are always sneaky and Umbridge is a Slytherin, she’ll find a way.

          • MartinMiggs

            This sounds really wonderful like rainbows and butterflies but not everyone is cut out to be an author/writer. As I’m sure Jo could attest to it is not so easy. Also he doesn’t have the money to publish himself so he would have to go to someone else who would likely not let him publish.

          • DoraNympha

            I know, it was just one idea, there are countless jobs out there that he wouldn’t have to do every single weekday. Btw he might write well enough if it’s a textbook, he was a good teacher and as last week’s episode pointed out too, Lupin’s the guy that says stuff like “will three become four?” – that movie line about the numbers of our followers isn’t that much of a stretch perhaps, Lupin wouldn’t exactly be a Lockhart (and who is?) but he could totally write some studies at least if not a book, studies are more easily publishable and maybe Dumbledore could help too. I only said writing because that’s the only creative/time-flexible profession I can imagine Lupin doing, since we don’t get any textual hints he’s, say, an excellent piano tuner.

          • Be a weird contract. ‘Cannot work under the full moon…’

          • MartinMiggs

            but really what jobs are out there really for a wizard? Teach at Hogwarts, work at the ministry, write at the Daily Prophet, invent some new potion/gadget, own a shop in Diagon/Knockturn Alley or Hogsmeade.

          • DoraNympha

            The ones we see are limited to a handful of locations, that’s a real shame. But stuff isn’t there just of its own accord. Someone has to sculp that Magic is Might statue, someone has to make butterbeer and firewhiskey, someone has to design the labels, someone has to build and maintain wizards’ houses, someone had to paint the million paintings we see everywhere we go, someone has to make magical paint and supplies, someone has to advertise Quidditch merch, keep team’s pitches in good condition, someone has to print and bind books… wizards wear jewellery, wizards wear hats, have walking sticks, glasses, these have to be made or transported from abroad. There’s medicine-making, Healing, and someone who cleans St Mungo’s, there are bartenders everywhere, historians, herbologists, dragon-keepers, magizoologists. Broommakers, not just quidditch supply shopkeepers. Hagrid himself is a groundkeeper and blast-ended skrewt breeder. Or you can be Hepzibah Smith and become a full-time hoarder.

            Barty Crouch and Dumbledore spoke a lot of languages but most people aren’t that awesome so someone could make a living out of translating books and interpreting to avoid the chaos we saw at the Cup among politicians. And we never see adults outside of Hogwarts at the Hogwarts library so maybe there’s a library for the general public? With a staff. Someone had to build the Durmstrang ship and the Beauxbatons carriage, someone definitely made the Hogwarts carriages, not to mention that just because Britain’s banned flying carpets…… and let’s not forget about all those cauldron-makers who foolishly make their cauldron bottoms too thin. Magical theatre!

            And the guy that worked at the post office for some reason, the one who forwarded Petunia’s Muggle letter to Dumbledore? What was that guy doing with his life?

          • MartinMiggs

            ok I agree there are more jobs than I listed but in a world where even muggles have machines that have replaced workers (in manufacturing for example) and magic can make dishes wash themselves you don’t need people to make butterbeer labels and you don’t need janitors because 1 spell can make that mess go away.

            Someone had to paint those portraits but they’re really old paintings that were made decades probably centuries ago and sure you could be the headmaster/headmistress portrait painter but how often does the headmaster die? Not enough to make a living.

            Who built that house that wizard is living in? His great great grandfather did (like Malfoy Manor) or you are living among muggles (like Snape) and a muggle built it. Who fixes the house? Nobody because magic! The Burrow looks like it will fall apart but it is held up by magic.

            There are bartenders but those are the shopkeepers. There are no other witches/wizards working in the Hog’s Head, Olivanders, Madam Malkin’s or Florean’s ice cream shop because they are run/managed/operated by the owner. These businesses aren’t mass employers like a GM or a Target.

          • DoraNympha

            That’s a good point, that machines have replaced jobs. But I think we get a sense of everything being homemade or on a smaller, personal scale rather than mass production – even the Mudblood pamphlets are being copied by hand, by a group of secretaries. It seems a bit impossible to think that shopkeepers also design their own labels and stuff, take Fred and George, for example: so they don’t only invent popular magical products but can also design their own boxes and shopping bags, something which took the film’s art department months of work to create…? Unlikely. Also, paintings need to be restored all the time, we see wizard paintings and furniture and objects in bad condition – someone forgot to put some preservation charm on them, apparently. And artists will make art regardless of demand, it’s not like dentistry. And the Ministry has a magical maintenance squad, if the Ministry needs them, why wouldn’t wizard houses? But I mean, you’re right, we see a limited number of jobs, but, I was super surprised to see an ice cream parlour in Diagon Alley when I first read it, it was like, okay they have incredible magical things, wands, but also normal things like ice cream, what else can they have? Anything.

          • No, he just got fired for missing about a week every month due to the transformation and the mild sickness that came with it.

        • There is a boo about werewolves (or is it vampires?) written by an anonymous author. Twas on the Pottermore of old.

          • DoraNympha

            Alas, though an updated book never hurts. #FullMoonSelfie #NoMakeup #NoWolfsbane

          • ??

          • DoraNympha

            A hip and trendy brand new book about werewolves. It’s not just any textbook, it’s a COOL book. (Pretty much how I imagine Lockhart’s Wondering with Werewolves anyway… lots of pics of Gilderoy posing in dark woods in the latest wizard fashion.)

      • MartinMiggs

        I’m sure you know what is meant by what I said. Lupin exclusively focuses on magical creatures and teaches nothing else. They never meet these creatures in a real world scenario again except for the boggart in book 5. So he just taught them something that has no practical purpose but they all had a joyful time learning about it. We see Lupin can teach something really well and get the students involved and remember him as someone with great knowledge of DADA when we only see him teach one very specific subject.

        • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

          but does he teach getting rid of boggarts to every year? We only see him do lessons with Harry’s year, not the older students. Teachers focusing on their own specialties is not uncommon. The year Lupin teaches is the year that the book for Care of magical Creatures is The Monster Book of Monsters, and they really don’t deal with monsters in that class (except for the skrewts, and they’re not in the book).

          Maybe it’s something like a life lesson, Hogwarts subjects being not very coordinated or systematic in their curriculum. Because magic isn’t, either.

        • DoraNympha

          He can’t have taught first years about boggarts yet and he must have taught sixth years non-verbal spells – Snape comes in to substitute and asks about where they are in the book and Moody asks about what the previous year’s lessons covered so it seems like there is some sort of curriculum or conventional way of things about which year covers what. Third year happened to be big on dark creatures and beings, I don’t think it’s necessarily Lupin’s special thing. Maybe he took the seventh year kids out to the grounds to look at some dementors? Maybe he had all the fifth years practice combative spells for their OWLs…

          • “But you’re behind – vey behind – on curses.”
            -Junior
            Yes, that’s a good point there is probably some rough curriculum that they have to follow, and I’d say that he overdid the defence on creatures a lot in a way the curriculum doesn’t approve of. If the fourth years were ‘very behind’ on curses, having only had some pointers by Quirinus on one or two jinxes.

          • DoraNympha

            To be honest, I remember loads of dark creatures taking up the majority of the DADA lessons even in years 1 and 2. Maybe Lockhart was supposed to have taught them basic spells in year 2 but he was so rubbish he ended up just talking about his fake adventures? But why didn’t Flitwick step in for the duelling club?? He’s a duelling champion! The kids could have learned from him but I guess the temptation of watching Lockhart make a fool of himself was too big? And while I agree that there was probably some truth in MoodyCrouch’s suggestion that the students should have learnt more about curses, I think it was an overplayed pretext on his part to justify spending weeks, if not months, on the Unforgiveables only. I can’t imagine it was part of the expected curricculum to Inperio the students… maybe they weren’t that behind on curses like he said, afterall. But, another clue that there is indeed some sort of curriculum is that Snape focuses primarily on non-verbal spells and this is something that happens in every other class too, so I guess the teachers all knew 6th year was the time to teach non-verbal magic.

  • Time&RelativDimensionInHandbag

    Just to make the statue even more disconcerting, I’ve always seen the “magic is might” statue and the humans underneath it as a bit of a corollary to images and footage of Holocaust victims in concentration camps. The limbs and faces and all angles and gauntness of it all evokes that image very, very strongly for me.

    • PuffNProud

      There is a memorial sculpture at Dachau in Germany that looks like barbed wire but is actually a representation of emaciated people in various contortions. It is at once shocking and incredibly sad. The discussion this week reminded me of that sculpture.

  • ISeeThestrals

    HAPPY HALLOWEEN EVERYONE!

  • Hollywobbles

    Not that it matter now, but Hermione saying she suspected the Harrycrux was movie cannon, in the book the only person Harry talks to between the pensive and the forest is Neville, he doesnt say goodbye to his friends because he worries it will weaken his resolve and he wont have to strength to continue on

    • ISeeThestrals

      I didn’t recall Hermione saying she suspected he was a horcrux in the movie, so I went and looked. Harry says he feels he’s known for a while and feels Hermione might have too. Then she offers to go with him. She never said it, but you see it kind of dawns on her face after Harry says all that.
      But still, even sensing something like that is heavy. I thought Dan was brilliant in conveying the horror of realizing that truth.

    • SocksAreImportant

      I always felt like they way over played the Harrycrux thing in the movies. It was shown very well that he was one in the movie. I don’t think it was given as much foreshadowing in the books. Just my opinion.

  • ISeeThestrals

    While I’m thinking about it, for the next chapter, you guys should definitely get a screenshot of Moody’s eye on the door from the movie for the next podcast as it’ll match the one they use for the chapter’s image in the book 😀

  • ISeeThestrals

    I would have loved to see Hermione stuff that portrait in her bag in the movie

  • Gryffindora The Explorer

    I always thought that Snape and Dumbledore had made arrangements for Snape to become headmaster if and when Voldemort managed to take over. Dumbledore would’ve seen the need for double-agent Snape to be in a position to protect as many students as possible if the school fell into death eater control. I think that the fact that the headmaster’s office allows Snape to enter is a good indication of this. I also think that the fact that Snape is allowed in the office is a huge clue as to which side Snape is on. Back in OotP the office refused to open for Umbridge when she appointed herself headmistress. The office itself obviously knew who the rightful occupant was. McGonagall had been filling the role of headmistress since Dumbledore’s death, but clearly the office didn’t have a problem with Snape taking over. I think the office somehow knows when someone is out to do harm to the school or its students. This compels me to ask, in a most Noah-esque fashion, is the headmaster’s office alive? 😉

    • SnapesManyButtons

      Yes! I think that’s exactly why Rowling had the Headmaster’s office close off to Umbridge. As a contrast to Snape being allowed in, which shows that he is the rightful Headmaster and not working against the school.

  • DoraNympha

    Brilliantly gross outro. Well done! 😀

    I have a question: what if one of the trio had stayed at Grimmauld Place? Obviously, this would never have happened but what if? Not only what would have happened at the Ministry but supposing they did acquire the locket somehow and Yaxley latched onto them the same way; if Hermione had stayed at Grimmauld Place, I don’t think Ron or Harry would have thought of disapparating right away so there would have been some commotion at the Black house and maybe the stationing Death Eaters would also have seen them on the doorstep so it would have been a few Death Eaters vs. the trio + Kreacher.

    If Ron had stayed behind, however, would Hermione still have decided to apparate away to the woods? What if she’d done that? Ron and Kreacher would have been met with Yaxley instead of Hermione and Harry and who knows how that would have gone down. Ron wouldn’t have concluded on his own what Hermione and Harry had done and wouldn’t have known where they were. And what if Ron had been cornered the same way Kreacher probably was? The Spattergroit cover is blown as soon as this day (or was it? they figured out Ron was there at the Ministry, didn’t they? then ignore this point if that’s the case), the Weasleys might have had to go into full hiding right now in case Ron’s an easy lay under interrogation (he may be at this point, volunteering instead of Hermione being tortured is a bit different), and Ron would have been separated from Harry and Hermione here.

    And what if Harry had stayed? Hermione and Ron might not have been assertive enough to stun a whole courtroom full of Yaxleys and Umbridges and the mission might have failed, or Hermione Disapparates with Ron and Harry is left separated from them. Harry is also the only one who can produce a reliable Patronus under pressure.

    In any case, would they have found one another again? What if someone’s captured, questioned or even killed? Would this have to entail a break into Azkaban or the Malfoy’s cellar as early as the autumn? How does that change the course of action? So many questions.

  • DoraNympha

    As an artist I am appalled at whoever was commissioned by the Death Eaters at the Ministry to sculpt ‘Magic Is Might’ and whoever designed the Dangers of Mudbloods pamphlets and other propaganda. If someone had tried to get me to do it that’d be the day I’d grab my tent and beaded bag and run for the countryside. Seeing these was when it really hit me that the Death Eaters don’t just run around chasing Harry Potter or setting Dementors on whomever they don’t like, they have set up a system which people have accepted and submitted themselves to and it’s scary and weird and there were artists who could be made to create art for the regime and Ollivander to help with the wand quest and journalists who were happy to defame Harry and the WWN that could be corrupted to hush up deaths. I wonder if the Ministry set up a committee of sorts to censor art, a Magical Art Approval Board or something, now that the WWII parallels are propagating. I’d also like to imagine that there were anti-regime artists who spread some counter-propaganda, much like what Potterwatch was doing, only in visual form. Wouldn’t mind charming those pamphlets to say the opposite of what Umbridge meant them to say and distributing them and the Ministry wouldn’t have noticed until it was too late. Umbridge banned the Quibbler issue that had Harry’s interview in it in OotP, right? And then everyone had it and read it. I want to think something like this was going on too in some art circles. Guerilla missions to spread anti-Ministry art, that would have been cool to hear about on the radio or something. It would keep people’s spirits up and irritate the Ministry or keep people like Umbridge in fear of falling from power.

    • Yo Rufus On Fire

      I would totally agree with you. I would not design anything in this new Ministry’s regime, but I don’t think people that did design it had a choice. They were probably scared that if they didn’t then something might happen to them or their families. There was not a mass exodus from Germany when the Hitler came into power because people didn’t like what he was saying or having printed. It was a slow process and Voldemort does it here too. it’s a very slow and careful process and people were afraid to run incase they are found out and hunted down by Voldemort’s death eaters.

      I agree that the sculptures and the pamphlets are horrible, but I don’t think it’s that easy to say “no, I’m not doing it” without getting a bullet or an AK in the chest. The sculpture and the pamphlets are supposed to be horrible too because they show how awful it is in the wizarding world and it mirrors how it was in Germany and that actually happened in real life. I think JK Rowling is trying to shock the readers with all of these outlandish things to show the lengths people will go to for power and the the fact that is ACTUALLY happened in Germany is terrifying.

      • I second that.
        And in the studio tour, you can see a couple of the anti-muggle leaflets and posters; One, ‘When Muggles Attack’ depicts a crazed muggle man in a pinstriped suit holding a knife, running across the front of it. It’s pretty strongly anti-muggle, and while it is film canon, I think it does show how quickly the Ministry has become anti-muggle. It’s only been six weeks since the Ministry fell.

        • DoraNympha

          The fact they were afraid of a non-magic person coming at them with a knife is kind of pathetic, though, isn’t it? They have WANDS and MAGIC, what’s so scary about a Muggle with a knife? (Now a Muggle with a machine gun…)

          • SlytherinKnight

            But it’s not like most witches and wizards have an once of common sense, Hermione pointed that out in Sorcerer’s Stone. It’s just like how Ron points out how there wouldn’t be an any Squibs if muggleborns are able to ‘steal’ magic from purebloods, people will believe what they want to believe regardless of logic or common sense.

          • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

            Pureblood wizards have no clue about the muggle world. Because history of magic is taught by a ghost and does not include recent history and muggle studies is an elective. Hiding from the muggles, fine, but letting the two societies drift apart so much that magical folk doesn’t realize anymore that they’re all human, that’s downright outrageous.

          • Fudge that! Go to your kitchen, open a drawer. Everyone has a sharp kitchen knife. But hey, we’d still scream and run if we see a caveman stumbling along with a club.
            Anyway, it’s only movie canon, and a mere prop.

          • DoraNympha

            I’ve kind of always just took this Muggle-danger thing as painting the DEs in a ridiculous light: they must be really pathetic at magic if they fear non-magic folk.

        • ISeeThestrals

          With that anti-muggle leaflet, I would say the creators believed they had to produce some image that made muggles as the worst species.

      • DoraNympha

        Right, that’s what’s so scary and weird about it, that only few people would make the choice to refuse because the choice is between painting propaganda or painting a target on their own backs. It’s not like it’s cowardly to succumb to pressure and work under the regime but I would not be able to do it, personally. I’m not even the self-sacrificing kind of person, just like, no, I could not get myself to do this if I had a wand. If they catch me, fine, but I wouldn’t want to go down in history as the witch that built that vile statue.

        The awful thing about Socialist Realist artists or even Nazi Germany’s artists is that some of the artists were actually genuinely okay with it, lots of people really believed in their political leaders and were happy to make all those pieces of art. And I know it’s weird to think but Madam Malkin wasn’t a bad person but she probably made some robes for Death Eaters or Ollivander wasn’t a bad guy but he did give away some of his expertise that helped Voldemort… even Malfoy used Darkness Powder in HBP, I’m always so upset when I read that, I mean he probably didn’t walk into WWW and bought a box of it but he did acquire it somehow and used it. So okay, I don’t expect Malkin to refuse to sew a cloak for Yaxley, sure. But artists I expect to be more conscious of what ideology they put their handiwork into. There is an element of a statement made with every art piece. I wouldn’t be the person to give my name to that statue. I know that’s just my standards but it’s like, you know, every artist has their limits on what they are and aren’t willing to do for a commission and I’d imagine propaganda for Muggle concentration camps or everything that’s going on in the Magic is Might statue would be a limit for any ethical person. Now the awful thing is that the majority of wizarding society seems to be at least a little prejudiced against Muggle-borns anyway so it’s not hard to imagine the artists and designers they found for the visual propaganda totally agreed with the new Ministry so there was no need to convince them. I can’t imagine a Dean Thomas taking on these jobs, though.

    • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

      Well, there have been plenty of artists throughout history that haven’t exactly had much in the way of strong moral fiber. Plenty were commissioned to do work they didn’t necessarily agree with just because the money was right.

      If I’m remembering correctly, this sort of thing happened during the Medieval Inquisition period too. Artists were commissioned for work by the Church, and to not comply was to risk being branded a heretic, which given torture and punishment techniques of the day, would have been more terrifying than just death. The Catholic propaganda mill was very much alive and well. Artists were persecuted for work that didn’t toe the Church’s line as well. So we see a lot of really beautiful art that glorifies a really troubling time period.

      That someone would be willing to make that horrible statue in the ministry is completely realistic. Agreed that it’s a pretty awful thought though.

      • DoraNympha

        Yeah well even in the Baroque Velazquez or the Renaissance Michelangelo Buonarroti were commissioned to paint the king’s court and the pope or the Genesis respectively, even though they didn’t do it because they wanted to glorify the subjects, but it would have been foolish to turn down these commissions, but they didn’t end up catering to every word of the commisioners. (Velazquez painted the pope unusually realistically and kinda stern-looking, or painted fools and little people of the court and you can see their life on their faces, in their eyes, which was weird because that’s not what court painters did at the time. Michelangelo found many MANY ways to play a joke on people of the church that he disliked, forever to be seen in his paintings.) I can’t sympathize with 20th century propaganda artists of posters, monumental sculptures or paintings, though, even though turning down those things would have been a risk too, because they weren’t just catering to the leaders’ egos, this art was part of a brainwashing campaign and there’s just something really disturbing about that. Pretty sure the choice was between a gulag or making art about how rad Communism is so I’m definitely not saying these artists were bad people, it’s just it’s weird to think about the creators behind the images of propaganda.

        What if there’s some hidden resistance clue on that statue, though, only recognizable for a few? Maybe a sculpor should have just taken the job to carve the MiM statue and just instead made a giant marble toilet in the middle of the atrium for everyone to see when they went to work in the morning, by which time the artist has gone into hiding far far away.

        Sorry, my comment ran away towards something else than a response to your comment, point is I agree, artists have always been pressured into catering for the ones in power, why should wizarding Britain be any different? :/

        • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

          Yeah, you’re totally right, I was just thinking about all the hidden symbolism in those kinds of pieces too. It is interesting to think that there might be subtle signs of resistance in the wizarding pieces as well. Perhaps the witch and wizard on the statue have looks of distaste, which might be read by the anti-muggle side as loathing of the muggles beneath them, but are really meant as disapproval for the witches and wizards they look down upon who are allowing these atrocities to happen.

          Or perhaps one of the twisted muggle hands is giving the finger but you only see it if you study the statue really closely.

          • DoraNympha

            Love your ideas!

        • Dumbledore’s through & through

          What I find interesting about this is that many people in the comments have linked the statue to a sculpute in Dachau. So we have a piece of art with the purpose to glorify the ministry and wizards in general that looks like a memorial sculpture. It’s terrifying and disgusting, yes, but thereby it openly displays how bad things are. This is rather unusual, aren’t goverments normally keen to keep up the pretense that they are the “good” ones? They make horrible laws and kill people more or less openly, but to display art like that seems weird to me. Even the Nazis didn’t brag openly about the KZs… I wonder why the death eaters are so open about their worldviews? Does anyone know exaples similar to this?

          • DoraNympha

            I think it’s deliberately because their main goal is to reveal the existence of the wizarding world and place themselves in control over non-magic people. So the first step to this is being open about their intentions before the wizarding community, perhaps? Or because it’s an extra touch of self-assertion? I’m surprised it wasn’t a monumental statue of Voldemort himself with a raised arm that reveals the Dark Mark. It would have been the salute of theirs, the raised Dark Mark, wouldn’t it? Totalitarian ideologists always need a strong “image” so to speak – but also to me it looks like it’s them showing off how they can manipulate people to do anything for them, how powerful they are to have a giant monumental statue made specially, that sorta stuff.

    • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

      I have a suggestion: one of the loyal Death Eaters is actually really into making such things and had this sculpture that he made at home, and when the opportunity arose to exhibit it in a public place, he offered it up and added the Magic is Might text.

      • DoraNympha

        That statue needed one big fireplace to floo it to the Ministry!

        • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

          I think transporting huge pieces of art for the purpose of decorating the ministry is a case when using an extension charm would be legal.

          • BadgermoleButterbeer

            Not to mention Shrinking Solutions and Engorgement Charms…

  • Gryffindora The Explorer

    As far as getting into the ministry goes, I don’t think anyone thought this was a great idea. I think it’s a way to degrade the ministry workers. The death eaters prevent all but their most loyal people from using the floo network or apparating inside, thereby forcing the average joes into a pretty humiliating form of entrance. If you keep them downtrodden enough they won’t try and speak or act out against you. I think it’s a form of control the death eaters are using to ensure everyone toes the new company line. The normal ministry worker probably thinks that if the new regime can make you flush yourself in a toilet just to get to work(and you haven’t done anything wrong), then what in the world could they do to you if you did something they didn’t like.

    • I always thought the same thing.

      Side note to Caleb…I remember my mom & her sisters telling me that when they were kids (back in the 50’s & 60’s) many places with public restrooms had pay toilets. It cost a dime to be able to open the stall door.

    • Yo Rufus On Fire

      100% agree with this! I was going to write a comment that said the same thing!!

  • Question:
    What the hell happened to Fudge? Where is he? Has he been ‘shunned sideways’ to Magical Law Enforcement, Games and Sports or the Improper Use of Muggle Artefacts? (Yes please) Is he just cleaning the floors? Or did the Death Eaters kill him off as a Friend of Potter?

    • SnapesManyButtons

      In Half Blood Prince he tells the Muggle Minister that he was run out of office soon after the battle at the Ministry of Magic and after all the havoc the Death Eaters start doing happens. He is sent to talk to him before the new Minister does, so he is still around but seemingly some sort of assistant to the Minister. Last we see he is attending Dumbledore’s funeral.

  • Also, did nobody realise Mafalda Hopkirk is the woman who sent Harry the letter in book five, expelling him for use of the Patronus Charm?

    • Yo Rufus On Fire

      Yes! I also think she is in book two for the floating charm. But I haven’t looked to confirm.

      • Yo Rufus On Fire

        Confirmed. She does write to him for the Hovering Charm. Pretty neat how JK Rowling builds her up very subtly.

      • Erm, nor have I. For either cases.

    • ISeeThestrals

      Yep. I had a tendency to call her Hopkins though. I like how in the movie the woman playing Mafalda had some resemblance to Hermione, I suppose to keep up the reminder that Hermione is posing as this woman.

      • Yo Rufus On Fire

        Yeah the Movies did that with both Runcorn and Cattermole. They both resemble Harry and Ron. This is a cinematic tactic that will help you believe that those people are actually the trio (Michael, correct me if I’m wrong!).

      • I also thought it was a somewhat interesting image in the film after they Apparate into the forest – they’re weren’t wearing school uniform, casual clothes or their pyjamas, they were wearing formal work clothes. They all looked a lot older, somehow.

  • Gryffindora The Explorer

    Question: with as wary as Hermione was about breaking into the ministry, why didn’t she suggest breaking into Umbridge’s home? I feel like this is a much safer option for the trio to consider. Presumably Umbridge’s house isn’t crawling with death eaters and pictures of Harry’s face as Undesirable No. 1. (Although one of those posters might have pride of place on one of her walls since she dislikes Harry so much!) Hermione is notoriously bad in a crisis, but she had weeks to think up a new plan while they were staking out the ministry. Going to Umbridge’s home also wouldn’t have put other people at risk (i.e. their chosen ministry workers).

    • DoraNympha

      My thoughts exactly, why not target Umbridge elsewhere than the Ministry? But she must go to work through her own fireplace, so there’s no chance of catching her on her way to work, and how could they find out where she lives? She probably doesn’t have protective charms around her house, though, so that’s a plus. I think the trio could have worked their tricks to lure Arthur away into the alley and talk to him super briefly about what’s going on and what they are trying to do or just establish a safe way to communicate if possible and to get him to find out where Umbridge lives. I love the Ministry operation, though, but you’re absolutely right, going for Umbridge at her home is a thousand times easier than doing this at the Ministry, one of the most dangerous places they could be right now.

      • ISeeThestrals

        I don’t think at this point they know where Umbridge keeps that locket. Her home could be a safe bet, but I’m certain she would definitely put up protection charms and traps, in this day and age. Surely she knows she has some enemies out there, so she’ll be prepared for anyone trying to sneak up on her in her home which is suppose to be safe. With the Ministry, there’s lots of guards around so she’d feel secure.
        I don’t recall how Umbridge viewed that locket. If she knew it was Slytherin’s or valuable in anyway. If she did know its value, she wouldn’t have risked leaving it at home even if it was protected. Besides, wasn’t it more that she confiscated it, and since she had, confiscated items belong to the ministry, thus it would be kept in the Ministry.

        • Gryffindora The Explorer

          Umbridge was wearing the locket, so I’m pretty sure she never turned the confiscated property over to the ministry. She blackmailed Mundungus into giving it to her so that she wouldn’t have him arrested. I think she also made the claim to Hermione (as Mafalda) that it was the crest of her house. She claimed it as her own and probably kept it on at all times.

    • MartinMiggs

      how would they know where she lived?

      • Gryffindora The Explorer

        Much like DoraNympha suggests, I think they could’ve lured Arthur into a meeting safely. He could’ve gotten them the information. I don’t think it would’ve been impossible for them to find her home.

        • MartinMiggs

          he wouldn’t know where she lives either so he would have to find some record of where she lives (probably at the ministry) and than oh someone broke into Umbridge’s house while Arthur Weasley was doing some snooping. You’ve created a trail to Arthur and put him in danger

  • ISeeThestrals

    So if you were to sit down and use that toilet rather than standing in it, could you then stand and flush the contents to the Ministry? lol. I couldn’t help wondering that.
    The magical world is full of funny transportation methods.

    • SnapesManyButtons

      If you had the magic coin, maybe. But you’d probably have to use it as a “special” way to tender your resignation, if you did to that!

    • RoseLumos

      As a former Universal Orlando employee, and on behalf of friends who still work there, I would like to advise people to NOT try this at Universal. Seriously, don’t. You wouldn’t go to the Ministry. But you might get escorted out by security.

    • BadgermoleButterbeer

      My theory is that you wouldn’t be able to get into this toilet without the proper coinage. Muggles may not even be able to see it properly. (Like the Leaky Cauldron.) If a muggle approached it, the toilet might seem either out-of-order or occupied.

      • ISeeThestrals

        I’m not exactly talking about muggles. Once wizards are in that cubicle, they proceed to standing in the toilet. My question was if they used that toilet like how it’s meant to be used, would the ‘contents’ (and I think you know what I mean by contents) head to the Ministry?
        I mean it’s a toilet for Merlin’s sake :S

  • SlytherinKnight

    Regarding last week’s Audioboom, I don’t think Hermione knew or suspected that Harry was a Horcrux because she would have done the same thing she did in Half Blood Prince after Harry told her and Ron about the Prophecy. I think that Hermione started to pull away from Harry after learning about the Prophecy, thinking that Harry might die and that she was almost too close to Harry and would be devastated about losing her best friend. She doesn’t do this during Deathly Hallows, I think that after Dumbledore’s death she realized that she needed to help Harry as much as possible to make sure he would survive, and that’s why she put as much effort into preparing for their search (her bag, etc.).

    • ISeeThestrals

      Hermione’s always been willing to help Harry as much as possible, long before Dumbledore’s death. I don’t think she suspected he was a Horcrux either. She knows a lot of things, but she doesn’t have to know everything.

  • Griff

    I love this chapter, because it provides our first glimpse into the truly epic nature of Deathly Hallows. The outlandish things Harry, Ron, and Hermione get away with in this book- darting in and out of the most highly protected areas in wizarding society- are fantastic. They require suspending disbelief a little bit more than usual, harkening back to the tradition of Greek myths, like the Odyssey. I can’t wait until we see Harry riding away on a dragon. This is why DH is the best in the HP series.

    • ISeeThestrals

      This chapter started my anxiety for the next. I remember I was really tense with the trio being in the Ministry. I think it was the most tense I’ve ever been in this book than in book 5 when they went to the Ministry then to save Sirius.

  • ScarletGhost

    On the topic of Dumbledore using Harry’s connection with Voldemort I absolutely think Dumbledore would’ve used it and would NOT have had Harry try to learn Occlumency. I mean, Dumbledore had all of sixth year to teach Harry (and he already knew he was dying so it’s not like he thought he would’ve had more time to teach him.) In Kazu’s paperback version of OotP on page 844 Dumbledore says “That power [love] also saved you from possession by Voldemort, because he could not bear to reside in a body so full of the force he detests. In the end, it mattered not that you could not close your mind, it was your heart that saved you.” Also, on page 684 of Kazu’s edition of DH in the Prince’s Tale it Snape is asking Dumbledore why he won’t tell him the info he’s giving to Harry and Dumbledore says “Voldemort fears that connection,…Not so long ago he had a small taste of what truly sharing Harry’s mind means to him. It was such pain as he has never experienced. He will not try to possess Harry again, I am sure of it…” I believe these quotes give evidence that Dumbledore does not fear Voldemort reading Harry’s mind after the events in the Department of Mysteries, or else he would not have given Harry the specifics of the horcruxes because he would’ve been fearful Voldemort would find out.

  • ScarletGhost

    (TRIGGER WARNING: If you are uncomfortable with the idea of abuse please don’t read, however I would like to get other’s opinions on this.)

    Going with the discussion of Harry and Voldemort’s relationship I’ve always been very curious as to why JK used that specific term, and also made such a big deal of Hermione trying to backtrack over it. Now I know I’m probably reading too far into it but we know (for a FACT) that Harry is a survivor of abuse. We actually see him in many abusive relationships throughout his life and I feel that we can define certain relationships as the 3 main types of abuse; physical, emotional, and sexual.

    First of all (and I will keep this brief) we have Harry’s relationship with the Dursley’s which I’ve always thought of as physically abusive. Dudley beat Harry up, Petunia tried to hit him with a frying pan, etc. I won’t go into much detail since we’ve beaten this dead horse so much already.

    Next we have Dumbledore. Anyone who knows me knows I’m not a Dumbledore fan due to the fact he left Harry in an abusive household for eleven years (and yes I’m sure he knew it, there is no way he left Harry Potter unattended for eleven years especially right after the first fall of Voldemort when Death Eaters would have taken him or killed him if they found him.) I always thought Dumbledore portrays the emotional abuse done to Harry. He intentionally left Harry in an abusive household because he wanted Harry to grow up yearning for a better life, then when he comes to the Wizarding World he would do anything to protect it, just because they treated him like an actual human being. I also find Dumbledore’s manipulation of Harry in book 6 atrocious. He knows he’s going to die and he knows he’s the last father figure Harry has left but he doesn’t tell him because he wants Harry to follow his orders and wants Harry to have every reason to do ANYTHING to stop Voldemort and his followers.

    This lastly brings me back to the original topic of Voldemort and Harry’s relationship. I believe this is a metaphor for sexual abuse and let me explain to you why. More specifically I am going along the lines of domestic violence/abusive partner when I mean sexual abuse. I think the most obvious parallel is in the ministry at the end of OotP where Voldemort literally rips into Harry’s mind, takes complete control of his body, and makes him do and say things he doesn’t want to do. We also see Voldemort break into harry’s mind when he’s at a heightened state of emotion (usually rage) and that is when we see the connection flare up. I hope this is obvious in it’s connection to an abusive partner, I don’t want to go into too much detail I am trying to keep this as child friendly as possible.

    Now again I may be reading too far into it but I do believe JK puts things in there that have to do with real life for us to think about. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject.

    • DoraNympha

      This is actually a very interesting bit of meta you’ve opened up – metaphorical abuse comes in many forms in HP and Harry suffers a lot of it. Voldemort and Harry’s abusive relationship or metaphorical sexual abuse was touched upon in the recent violence against women episode of the Academia podcast. It does sound too bizarre at first sight and I do think the Academia hosts ran away with this theory too much but it definitely is a metaphor to consider! Recommending the Academia episode strongly if you haven’t listened to it!

      • ScarletGhost

        I absolutely love Mugglenet Academia and I’m so glad I listen to that podcast. They took everything I wanted to say and made much more clear and articulate than I was able to. Thanks for the suggestion!

    • RoseLumos

      If I remember correctly, I think one of the hosts mentioned the “sexual” abuse thing back in the last few episodes of GoF. It was the scene where Harry is tied up against the gravestone and Wormtail cuts his arm for the blood sacrifice. I think the host’s comment was that the scene could be looked at as a parallel to sexual abuse since Wormtail was physically harming Harry and taking away his blood. I don’t remember the exact details but I thought at the time that it was a good argument.

      Also, a few years ago I interned at a summer camp and part of our training was sitting through a child abuse prevention presentation. In that presentation, I was taught that there were four forms of abuse – the ones you mentioned plus neglect. And I think we can all agree that Harry was neglected by the Dursleys. I think it says later in this book that the Dursley’s never actually starved Harry, but it’s clear that he probably never got as much as he wanted to eat. There were also many other instances that would probably count as neglect, such as leaving Harry alone in a locked room in OotP and the time they let him run away in PoA (in which I assumed the Durley’s never called the police to look for him or even cared where he ended up). I think we can also count Dumbledore as an accomplice to neglect, since like you said, he was probably very aware of what was happening. Also, in 48 of the US states, it’s a crime to not report child abuse if you are a teacher, doctor, nurse, social worker, law enforcement officer, etc. So Dumbledore could legally be held responsible if he suspected child abuse and never properly reported it.

      • DoraNympha

        The trouble is, there’s nowhere to report this to. The Ministry of Magic doesn’t have a welfare office or social workers, there’s no youth councelor at Hogwarts apart from if you’re comfortable to talk to your Head of House. I feel like it’s Dumbledore to whom abuse would be reported to. And he didn’t do anything for the sake of ‘The Greater Good’. Also, Harry is told to report Umbridge’s abuse to Dumbledore but that’s different from domestic abuse. The general conclusion is that wizarding society doesn’t care about the welfare of its people like Muggles do, they don’t have safety, privacy or child protection regulations in place in most cases… I’d like to think Harry advocated for something like this at the Ministry after all the abuse he’d seen/experienced. Hermione did the elvish welfare thing, so it would be cool if they set up something to prevent Meropes and Arianas and Harrys but I’m not so sure this happened…? :/

        • RoseLumos

          I would love to see Harry set something like that up, but I think he has a problem with walking around and shouting “I was abused!” Although he makes comments about the Durley’s here and there, I don’t think he is comfortable with admitting to a large group of people what happened. However, if he could set it up “behind the scenes” with someone else in charge, it would be nice.

          Also, I have a weird fan-fic mind where I like to speculate a lot of “what if” scenarios, and I always thought what if Lucius and Narcissa decided that, after the war, they wanted some kind of contact with Teddy since he is, technically, their nephew. Then I could see Harry jump into setting up some kind of child protection service, because despite what Narcissa does to save Harry, I bet there is no chance in hell he would let them get close to Teddy.

          Also, it’s interesting you mention Umbridge’s abuse to Harry, because in the real world if a teacher did something similar to a student they would not only be fired, they would be sent to prison. Harry was fifteen and there is no reason why an adult should cause physical harm like that to a teenager. In fact, I think one of the saddest bits of OotP (besides Sirius’s death) was that Harry was physically abused and had no one to report it to. Although I always wondered what would happen if Sirius or Mrs. Weasley noticed Harry’s hand over the winter break.

          • SlytherinKnight

            I’ve read a couple of fan fics in which Harry does set up a foundation/organization/charity that looks out for orphans, muggleborns who are abused by their families for their abilities, etc. JKR admits that Harry is much like Voldemort and Snape in the sense of that Hogwarts was their home, and I think a great way for Harry to give back and make sure that no child goes through what he did if he were to fund an orphanage or set up some sort of foundation to protect children rather than becoming an Auror, because Harry did say that he had had enough of hunting Dark wizards.

            Regarding Sirius and Molly not noticing Harry’s hand during OotP, I give Sirius a bit of a pass since he is not all there in the head after Azkaban. It’s amazing that Sirius is able to somewhat reasonably function in society after going through pure torture with the Dementors. But Molly, the woman who calls Harry a son (or as good as), doesn’t get as much of a pass since she, I believe, is blind a bit to the real world. She never does anything about Ron and the twins telling her about the bars on Harry’s windows in Chamber, she seems to think that Sirius is fine after his time in Azkaban though she knows what monsters the Dementors are, not realizing that Sirius is seriously messed up in the head. Though Molly does have to worry about Arthur being in the hospital after Nagini’s attack. It really isn’t until Bill being injured in HBP that I believe Molly’s eyes are truly opened to the fact that war is here and that people will get hurt regardless of their age.

          • RoseLumos

            That second paragraph was so well written. Yes, I so agree. I do wonder if she ever did try to help Harry get out of that situation. From what I can tell, I think she did try after GoF because Ron said something about Molly talking to Dumbledore asking if Harry could go directly to the Burrow for the summer. He said no, but I think Molly realized that Harry went through a truly terrible event and that he really needed love and nurture to get through it. And as we see in the beginning of OotP, he did have a really tough time dealing with it on his own, which really lead to him (in my opinion) suffering some form of depression or PTSD throughout his fifth year. I wonder if Harry would have had a better year if he didn’t have to stay with the Dursley’s, and I think he would have. He would have had someone to talk to after having reoccurring nightmares and he would have been more in the loop about the war. Even if Harry didn’t talk about it do Molly and Arthur, I think he still would have done better knowing that there were people around him who did love and care for him.

            Also, if anyone follows my posts enough, you would know I’m not the biggest Sirius fan, so I am still upset that Sirius left Harry at the end of GoF to alert the Order (or whatever he did). I’m sorry, but family takes priority in life and Sirius should have stayed with Harry. Someone else could have done his task. Although, to be fair, I don’t think Sirius and Harry were as close as they thought they were, so I’m not sure if it would have made much of a difference. Harry would have told Sirius about his dreams and Sirius would say that James never had nightmares so get over it Harry. *Angry Sirius rant over*

          • TheAmazingBouncingFerret

            I definitely agree about Sirius and Harry not being as close as they thought. Sirius is the closest thing to family Harry thinks he’s gonna get, and Harry is the closest thing to James Sirius can get, it all really springs from that. Sirius isn’t bad really in GoF, if they kept going like that they might have been able to build a more solid relationship, but he (unsurprisingly) reverts back to the emotional maturity of a teenager in OotP. It doesn’t help that neither of them is really trying to get to know the other better, they kind of assume they’re already there from the start.

          • DoraNympha

            …omg they never noticed it. [bangs head into wall] I think Harry could totally have reported it to McGonagall who would have told Dumbledore straight away and they could have prevented further usage of her quill. But what about Neville being stressed from his family? Or Luna’s being bullied? They could have gone to their Heads of House and sorted it out. Pottermore says Flitwick is there to talk and cheer you up with some dancind cupcake charms, and McGonagall is very perceptive about her students as people many times in the books, it’s just never really advertised and it’s not official that they are there to talk if students have personal problems. I think domestic abuse could be reported to any teacher/adult at Hogwarts you trust and abuse at school could be reported to Heads or the Headmaster/-mistress or even a Prefect or Head Boy/Girl, it’s just that no one ever does so. Albeit, years of kids probably reporting the countless awful things Snape does and says to students and nothing being done about it may havve brought this about. Maybe they have learned after years of Snape’s presence that there’s no point in reporting it. :/

          • SlytherinKnight

            Well Harry is sent to McGonagall at the beginning and she tells him to keep his head down and stay quiet, not really the best way to get a student to open up to her. And back in Sorcerer’s Stone, she doesn’t believe Harry about someone trying to steal the Stone so Harry doesn’t think she will believe him. And with Harry’s upbringing, he doesn’t truly trust adults IMO.

          • DoraNympha

            But she doesn’t know about the manner of the detention, does she? If she’d known, she would have stepped in at once, I’m sure. (Is it only in the movie when McGonagall tells Umbridge her methods are medieval?) Harry does say some other time that McGonagall isn’t likely to entertain theories as much as Dumbledore, so that’s not encouraging, but she also spots right away that Neville doesn’t want to take the classes he’s taking in year 6 and she knows he’s being pressured into a class schedule by her gran and McGonagall is having none of it. She also gets teary when she believes Harry and Ron are on their way to visit a petrified Hermione in CoS. She’s stern but she’s also a softie who cares and knows her students. McGonagall (and Angelina for that matter) tells Harry to control himself in Umbridge’s class because there’s literally nothing to do about Umbridge now that she’s there so best not to make matters unnecessarily worse. How hard is it to get through a class of silent reading without mentioning Voldemort’s name, for real? However, if McGonagall really knew about what the detention entailed, I believe she would have marched to Umbridge’s office straight away and put an end to it, like she had put a quick end to turning students into ferrets.

          • Claire Marie

            Hmm. In Order, Harry goes to McGonagall before he is ever forced to write with the quill. She tells him to keep his head down, because she realizes this is the best way to keep him safe and from being targeted even further. And can you honestly say that you would believe a group of 11 year-olds that are telling you an extreme scenario involving something they shouldn’t even know exists? As a teacher, if this happened, I would attempt to figure out how my students came by the information they weren’t supposed to have, reassure them that the people in charge have a handle on the situation, send them away and then go investigate for myself. I’m sure McGonagall did the exact same thing.

          • RoseLumos

            I wonder how much the Muggle world blends into Hogwarts, because right now we are going through a MAJOR anti-bullying trend. Before 2000ish, if someone was bullied the teacher might tell the kid to toughen up or to work on it on their own. Today we see kids getting suspended or even charged with crimes for bullying. I wonder if in modern-day Hogwarts Muggle born parents are more vocal about stopping it. Like when Luna’s possessions got stolen, I could see the teachers actively getting involved rather than shrugging it off.

            And yes, as far as we know, no one but Harry and a few of his friends knew about his hand. I would have really loved to see Sirius or Mrs. Weasley’s reactions to it. I think they both would have gone right to Dumbledore about it, with Sirius making sure that Umbridge got some kind of equal punishment. But then Sirius would get arrested and Dumbledore would probably have done nothing about it, and if he did the Ministry wouldn’t allow him to fire Umbridge. They would have probably thrown her a party, actually. What’s really sad is that the scaring on Harry’s hand seems to be permanent, so if Mrs. Weasley ever did find out she would probably feel horribly guilty.

          • DoraNympha

            That’s true, when the bullying was worst I had to be the one moving classes, almost schools, and removing myself from the vicinity of bullies and walk to and from school the longer but safer way to avoid them etc. I remember was just told to just try and fit in. That’s not helpful. But nowadays it’s being handled better and better everyday. For all their wisdom, though, the Hogwarts staff weren’t exactly professional youth workers. And I know Fudge was crazy at the time but I think he’d have been horrified at the quill thing, tbh, but maybe not, maybe he would have been okay with it, which is horrible. The thing that also frustrates me to no end about this is that if Harry had spoken up against the quill, he could have prevented others from getting the same detention. I’m sure it was discussed during OotP a lot, just saying! Wasn’t it also in the Pottermore Quidditch World Cup finals articles that Harry had a new scar to his two ones? So it’s known Harry has two permanent scars, so Mrs Weasley had to learn at some point! :S (Although, it’s kind of safe to assume Fred and George also got a lot of detentions with her, since they get detentions all the time anyway, and we know Lee got the quill treatment for as little as twisting the regulation that prevented non-curriculum topics discussed between teachers and students…. it never says anyone but Harry has a permanent scar from Umbridge, though, so this is purely speculation.)

        • MartinMiggs

          yet in a muggle setting there is nobody there to help Harry for a decade of his life with the Dursley

          • DoraNympha

            Did Dumbledore Imperio the Muggle school staff not to do anything about his bullying and lack of proper clothes too or did they not care of their own accord?

          • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

            from my own experience during my school years in the 90s, teachers would act if a child spoke up, but didn’t care as much as teachers today.

      • ScarletGhost

        You’re absolutely right I totally forgot about neglect. I don’t have the book in front of me, but I think I remember (though it could be a movieism) that Vernon or Petunia says something like “No funny business or you won’t eat for a week.” Also in CoS the Dursleys lock Harry in his room and fed Harry 3 times a day through the cat flap and only allowed him to use the bathroom in the morning and at night (I think refusal to allow a 12-year-old child to use the restroom is abuse in many ways.)

        And I totally forgot about the GoF discussion. I believe it was Noah and he was talking about Voldemort and Harry (which ties into what I was saying I can’t believe I forgot that) and the insinuation of “I can touch you now.” I also think there was mention that Ralph Fiennes specifically played Voldemort with that intention in mind (however I haven’t done any research on that so I could be totally wrong there.)

  • Yo Rufus On Fire

    From the Trio’s perspective. I think it was a mistake to take Phineus Nigellus off the wall and into her bag. The reason why she takes him is so that he can’t see where they are to be a spy for Snape because he will only see into her bag. This is the mistake on her part because if she had left Phineus at 12 Grimmauld Place then he would have only heard them for one day (when she finds out Snape as Headmaster) and then no more because they went to the forest by that time. Because Hermione takes Phineus into her beaded bag, he follows them wherever they go and can hear their conversation and such when Hermione opens up the bag and when Hermione takes him out of the bag with the blindfold over his eyes. Because she takes him with her, Phineus can still spy on them and give the information to Snape. This is how Snape is able to get his patronus over to the Forest of Dean. The results are good because they do get the sword, but in the moment, and if we didn’t know what was going to happen I don’t think its good idea for Hermione to take his portrait.

    • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

      classic story trope: you try to avoid something and by doing so you make it happen.

    • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

      True, but I wonder if Hermione intended her bag to be a long-term solution. They didn’t realize that they weren’t going to return to the house at the time.

      • Yo Rufus On Fire

        I would agree with that. But shouldn’t have Hermione dumped it somewhere then?

        • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

          yes, you’d think that taking the portrait off the wall and putting it face down in the cellar or something would work better against him spying on them. Maybe it had something to do with treating a piece of art with respect and leaving the person it represents their dignity.

          • SnapesManyButtons

            That’s what I was thinking. As the person who started SPEW, she wouldn’t want to leave a portrait lying in a field or something, even if he had another portrait he could go to.

          • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

            Imagine how angry Phineas would be if they just left his portrait in a field or some alley in London. Haha.

          • MartinMiggs

            she’s not Noah she knows the portrait isnt alive

        • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

          Yeah, I get the feeling they sort of just forgot about it though, up until they realize they might get information out of Phineas.

  • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

    when you’re reading books in a language that’s not your native language and you forget about it because you go into reading-mode, and then there are sentences in your native language and you go “wait – something’s different, but I can still understand it” and take some moments to realize that you do unterstand your native language: that was me reading this chapter.

    Thanks for picking my comment from the PQotW!
    I want to add an argument about why Lupin would be able to keep up with the chaotic search of the trio. He survived several months on an undercover mission among werewolves. Getting in touch and meeting with people who want to hear from him would be a piece of cake.

    When talking about different kinds of villains, Umbridge is sometimes categorized as lawful evil, while Voldemort is chaotic evil. I’m not sure about this category for her, because of how she got the locket. Is taking bribes from thieves lawful?

    • RoseLumos

      Out of curiosity, when you read the books in German how do they do that scene?

      • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

        without looking it up: they keep the cursive writing for the sentences that are already German. Nothing else to indicate that the woman speaks two different languages in this scene.

        Someone who has their copy at hand, please tell if I remembered that correctly.

  • RoseLumos

    What I love about the Harry Potter series (among other things) is how this is the only book or media form I can think of that discriminates against the entire audience. I could see people reading a book about the Holocaust or the Civil Rights Movement and think, “well, at least it wasn’t me.” But every reader is a Muggle. We are all in the same boat, despite our religion, ethnicity, or nationality. We are all discriminated against. We can all feel what it is like to be hated or despised simply because of who we are and the way we were born. And even though there are fans who like dressing up as Death Eaters, we all know that if this book was real, we would all be in terrible danger for being, to paraphrase Harry, for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Now we can look back at other moments in history when people were tortured or killed because of who they are and we can relate, because we know how it feels.

    On a side note, I’m Jewish and reading about the sculpture of the wizards sitting on a pile of bodies reminds me of pictures of the Holocaust where people’s bodies were just thrown in pits and piles. It gave me chills when I first read it, and again every time I see it. I really hope once the war is over that that sculpture is one of the first things that gets removed.

    • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

      I’m with you on these associations with the Holocaust. The description of the statue immediately made me think of the sculpture at the Dachau site by Nandor Glid. It’s just twisted bodies and barbed wire, really chilling and sad to look at.

  • RoseLumos

    Can we give a shout out the the actors who played the Polyjuiced Harry, Ron, and Hermione!?! The mimicked Dan, Rupert, and Emma’s mannerisms so well it’s almost amazing. We often talk about our favorite actors from the films, but these three are definitely on my list. These scenes are some of my favorite book to movie adaptations in the series! In fact, I think they were almost better than what was described in the book.

    • SnapesManyButtons

      I agree! They really look like teenagers who don’t know how to act like adults. I love those scenes, too.

    • ISeeThestrals

      Yes, I was commenting on how I liked that they purposely chose actors that also resembled the trio to a degree, and their mannerisms were spot on. Some of the moments you see there, I wish were in the book, like Ron commenting on how disgusting it was to be flushed into the Ministry. How does Harry not stop and think how weird that is.

  • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

    The trio miss the Hogwarts Express, but what about Draco? Does he attend 7th year at least for some time? Narcissa mentions that he’s home on easter holiday when Hermione, Ron and Harry are snatched and brought to Malfoy Manor.

    • RoseLumos

      I always assumed that he had a fairly “normal” year. However, I bet a 15 year old or younger Draco would have loved Snape in charge with no Muggle-born students. But I think that after his 6th year he is enjoying it a lot less.

      • Claire Marie

        Draco doesn’t have any power anymore since his father fell out of good standing. Lucius is no longer feared, he doesn’t have influence in the ministry, and is unable to give orders and have other people actually follow them. Draco has lost any intimidation tactic that a younger version of himself would have enjoyed.

        Bigger than that though, I think is the realization of what he has gotten into. Draco now is fully aware that Voldemort was all too willing to sacrifice him in order to punish his father. Because Draco didn’t kill Dumbledore, he lives in constant fear of what will happen to him. His entire family has been mocked and is really just skating by on thin ice. The Malfoys can’t disassociate from the Death Eaters, for they will surely be killed, but I think the majority of their family would be very willing to do so – especially considering their actions at the end. The Malfoy family is only in this now to stay alive.

    • BadgermoleButterbeer

      Can you imagine Draco in the Carrow’s Dark Arts class. Neville tells us that they were supposed to be practicing the Cruciatus Curse on 1st years. (Can’t remember if that’s movie or book cannon.) I totally believe that Draco would have done it to be a good Slytherin, but would have spent the next week crying with Myrtle. Actually, he probably talked and cried with Myrtle a lot his 7th year.

      • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

        I hope he was still able to cry, and not in the dark place beyond feeling and expressing his emotions at all.

  • Happy Birthday Sirius Black!

  • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

    I don’t think Snape had to convince Voldemort at all to be placed as headmaster. Remember, Lupin said Voldemort was intentionally keeping the takeover quiet. Making Snape headmaster fits this perfectly. Snape has been at Hogwarts a long time, and already has backing for the position from the likes of Lucius Malfoy, as Draco mentioned while sucking up to Snape in CoS (I think?). It is completely probable that there are plenty of other non-death eater Slytherins that support his candidacy as well. So it makes sense as far as not being blatantly obvious that Voldemort is behind it. If some random jerk of a Death Eater from outside the school were to be made Headmaster it would be far more suspicious, people would be more likely to question it openly. This is just another way offering his people into positions of power from the shadows, and Hogwarts headmaster most certainly is a powerful position to hold.

    I was thinking that making the Carrows teachers probably would negate this plan, but then again I imagine that the general public doesn’t know them to be Death Eaters. Plus everyone knows how difficult it has been to fill the DADA position, so no one would really question a less than ideal candidate there. Also, Muggle Studies seems to be a mostly overlooked subject so I suppose people wouldn’t be too inquisitive about that new hire either.

  • Yo Rufus On Fire

    You know, I have a feeling that Voldemort admired Adolf Hitler when he was a child, especially once he found out that he was a wizard. I really do, because everything he is doing mirrors Hitler to a T.

    Voldemort is currently in control of 2 things – the Ministry and Hogwarts. Adolf Hitler, when he was in power was in control of the government and youth academies. What better way to control a whole country then to control the thing that makes the whole world go round and schools that develop a young child’s mind. We already know how Hitler controlled everything (I don’t need to explain it), so I’m just going to talk about Voldemort.

    Voldy came in and took over the Ministry which houses the Daily Prophet, the Auror office, the Department of Mysteries and many others. He has the whole entire Government at his disposable. he controls the floo network, he can see all of the underage wizards that have the trace on them. He can do whatever he wants, and probably over half the wizarding population works there so they are under his control as well. The consequences are so sever if someone where to step out of line that no one will.

    Voldy now has control over Hogwarts. The school that molds young witches and wizards minds. Hitler had the Nazi Youth Camps that taught children the the Nazi way. Voldemort is doing the same thing here. by instilling Voldemort’s beliefs and views into the minds of children is a very easy way to produce your own army. They make it compulsory and they don’t let the Muggleborns go to school anymore. Voldemort is raising his own Death Eater Youth.

    Voldemort is mirroring everything Hitler did when he was in power. I just wonder if anyone ever told him what happened to him in the end…

    (I hope you get to read this Michael! I posted too late on WWII a few weeks ago so you didn’t get to see it. I love WWII connections!!)

    • MartinMiggs

      I do not believe he admires anyone especially someone who would choose death (sorta like his mother in the way she lost the will to live). Voldemort hates muggles and its not a part of his DNA to look past the fact someone is a muggle. Do not judge a person by the magic in their blood but by the content of their character Dr King might say but Voldemort could not would not do this. Also he’d be about 13 or so when WWII started and by this point he wouldn’t care about the Muggle world he would be too entrenched in the magical world to care. Although perhaps you could make the argument that’s why he wanted to stay at Hogwarts for the summer which would also raise the question of why the school/ministry is sending a child back to London which is being bombed

      • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

        maybe the orphanage was relocated to a safer place during the war, does the text specifically say that it’s in London when Tom requests to stay over the summer?
        Or the ministry of magic doesn’t really care about Hogwarts students, not even when they’re as brilliant as young Riddle was.

        • MartinMiggs

          Yes the orphanage is in London and Tom is 12 when the war begins and 18 when it ends and we know he asks to live at Hogwarts at this stage in his life.

          • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

            Yes, it’s in London. As far as I know, during the war children from London were sent to rural areas because of the bombings. I don’t know if children in orphanages had to stay or were also sent away. Tom Riddle might have found both alternatives unpleasant, the bombings were certainly enough reason to leave, but in London he would have been able to move around on his own and go to Diagon Alley occasionly. Somehow I believe Diagon Alley would have been a safe place during WWII.

      • Yo Rufus On Fire

        I know that Voldemort probably doesn’t even know who Hitler was. I was just comparing the two.

        • MartinMiggs

          you said he admired Hitler which would require Voldemort to know who he actually is/was

          • Yo Rufus On Fire

            I’m saying it as a crazy alternate universe. I know he actually doesn’t. But the fact that he mirrors Hitlers actions so closely, you being to wonder.

  • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

    Rereading the chapter my heart falls for Reg Cattermole, who wants nothing more than to support his wife in through this inhuman treatment, and is kept from her because he is in the wrong place at the wrong time. In this regard he is like Ron, who doesn’t care about the blood-status of the people he loves. We never learn what became of the Cattermoles, do we? And how did he stop the effect of the Puking Pastille? I guess his children were still small, because if one of them was at Hogwarts he might have heard of the Skiving Snackbox Sweets.

    • TheAmazingBouncingFerret

      I don’t think we do find out, I think it’s just Hermione hoping they were able to disapparate before remembering the wife didn’t have a wand, so it doesn’t sound good. As for the puking pastille, he most likely takes Hermione’s advice of going to St. Mungo’s, they can probably fix that sort of thing in two seconds.

  • Yo Rufus On Fire

    Who actually appointed Severus Snape as Headmaster? Was it Pius? Or the Governors?

    I don’t think it was a shock to the wizarding public that Snape was appointed Headmaster because, to the best of my knowledge, it was not publicized that he kills Dumbledore. No one knew the real story except the Trio, and the Order. Oh and the Death Eaters, but I don’t think they’d be going to tell anyone. by the time article was published, there was also and article that Harry is wanted for questioning of Dumbledore’s murder. So the public, with no other news source, would believe this and because Snape has taught there for so long, i don’t think that parents would have thought it to be bad, at first.

    But I don’t think that Voldemort trusts Snape just because he is “like” him. I don’t think Voldemort knows Snape’s bloodlines, just like no one knows Voldemort’s bloodline. He trusts Snape because Snape actually killed Dumbledore. Dumbledore says it himself, that is the reason why.

    Also, I looked up the Sword of Gryffindor and in the book there is no mention that it is missing when Scrimgeour comes to visit. But! I will say that it is definitely a clue because Snape gives Harry the sword later on.

    • SnapesManyButtons

      I wondered why they said the Sword of Gryffindor was missing, because it wasn’t that I could see. They didn’t give it to Harry because it wasn’t Dumbledore’s to give. It’s in the Headmaster’s office when Ginny tries to steal it, then Snape puts a copy in Bellatrix’s vault and hides the real one behind Dumbledore’s portrait.

      I assume it was the Board of Governors that appointed Snape, but they were surely all in Voldemort’s pocket and would do what he wanted. Kind of the way Lucius got Dumbledore ousted with threats. As for whether everyone knows Snape killed Dumbledore, Harry says specifically that McGonnagal, Flitwick and Sprout know the truth, so maybe not everyone does. Like in other parts of the books, the general public believes what the Prophet prints and pretty much prefers to pretend things are okay rather than look closer and find out that they’re not. I doubt they know he’s a Death Eater either.

  • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

    You know, I get why Harry wanted to hurry up and get on with going into the ministry and I agree that there probably wasn’t much more information that they could have obtained but WHY didn’t they at least learn a bit more about the people they would be impersonating? I mean they picked three people that didn’t really have much reason to be seen running around together, and Mafalda and Runcorn don’t exactly seem to be in positions where they fly under the radar. Hermione/Mafalda quickly gets pulled away for an “important” job, Runcorn clearly isn’t the type to be pal-ing around with those he considers his inferiors. Maybe I’m expecting too much out of seventeen year olds espionage skills, but it seems they might have thought that through a bit more. Knowing exactly who they are impersonating and what they do seems pretty important if they want to avoid getting caught out.

    Add that to the fact that they didn’t even consider what to do if they got separated, they are incredibly lucky they actually accomplished this mission, and just barely.

    • ScarletGhost

      I agree. I mean I know they were stressed, but I feel this was too hasty. Now, I’m 19 and I’d like to think that I’d do a better job planning but who knows unless you’re in a similar situation. I just feel, even if Harry was about to rush into it Hermione should’ve argued harder to get a few more days of planning in, I even expected Ron to sort this out (like his chess strategies) and figure out a better way.

      • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

        Definitely, I’d certainly have expected Hermione at least to question it a bit more. But I guess that just basically winging it half the time is the Trio’s style. And this is just in the movies but when Harry says “when have any of our plans actually worked?”, it’s a pretty fair assessment.

  • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

    I’m glad, Dana, that you stated so clearly how reading Potter is a way for you to cope with a huge load of work. When I’m asked why rereading a book series and discussing it online is such an important passtime for me (well, I’m just one of those people with over 1000 comments in under a year, so there might be evidence for the time I spend with it), escape from the mundane world is important, surely.
    But rereading chapter by chapter, close-reading and taking time to make connections to other ideas and stories is something unique. It’s an experience, a shared path, and I do take a lot of new thoughts and insights from it and share them with the people in my life. For example, I’m reading Astrid Lindgren’s diaries from WWII right now, they were published in october, more than 70 years after she wrote them. Reading what my favourite children’s author wrote about her personal life and the events of the war makes me tear up several times per page, especially knowing how many beautiful and wonderful stories she wrote later. Here I am, discussing Harry, Hermione and Ron risking their lives at 17 and 18 years to stop the war and bring down the tyrant. Lindgren writes about her son’s 17th birthday and that he would have been sent to die uselessly in the war at this age with so many other young men, boys, really, had they been living in Germany. 1945 in Germany, two boys who would become my granddads later, were indeed sent abroad to fight at age 17, when the war was already lost. Here I am, explaining to my child, born in 2005, about these parallels between young people in wars, about the great-grandfather she remembers from when she was really tiny. And why DH is not just a fantasy book, and that right now children her age and younger are suffering and dying because of war and that “the adults” haven’t learned the lesson and that I want her to learn it: Love.

  • RoseLumos

    As we discuss why Harry, Ron, and Hermione chose to impersonate these people without doing much research, I wonder what would have happened if they Polyjuiced Muggles. I know, I know, it’s not safe to be a Muggle in the Ministry, but hear me out – the Ministry seems fairly large. While some people know their co-workers, it’s not like a small office where everyone knows everyone. Isn’t it possible to just walk in and hope that everyone assumes they are people who just work in a different department? I’m thinking about some of the large companies I worked at and if someone I didn’t recognize walked in, I wouldn’t think anything of it. And if anyone asked who they were, they could just say that they are meeting a relative or old friend for lunch. In fact, if they said they were visiting Arthur Weasley. If anyone actually brought the trio to Arthur to test it, I bet they could get some message to them (Harry could say something like “Padfoot sent us” and he would know instantly that it is Harry and would cover for him). I’m sure it wouldn’t work out, but I would like to hear everyone else’s ideas on it.

    • ScarletGhost

      The only thing I could see going wrong would be if there are specific things that would identify them to the departments (like how Magical Maintenance wears blue and stuff like that.) Even if not everyone knows the entire ministryI’m sure they know their own departments.

      • RoseLumos

        True. But besides the maintenance people, no one else has a uniform. So if they dressed in regular robes, I would think everyone would just assume they belonged to a different department.

        • ScarletGhost

          Are we sure they don’t have a uniform? Harry and Hermione don’t know and Ron only remembers because of what the wizard was wearing. It’s possible everyone has uniforms that maybe Ron just doesn’t mention at the time. (I think they get interrupted around here but I’m not sure which is why I think Ron couldn’t have said other uniforms if there were any.)

          • RoseLumos

            Hmmm I guess it is possible. I could see people in “support” type jobs like maintenance, custodial, and security having uniforms. And I think some of the legal people do while in court. But it appears that a majority of them don’t. Harry has already been to the Ministry once and he probably would have mentioned if he saw the Aurors (for example) in uniform.

          • ScarletGhost

            That’s totally true. I think it’s strange, you’d assume aurors would have uniforms like police officers.

          • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

            depends on what kind of work they’re doing. it’s not always a good idea to be recognizable as an official person.

          • ScarletGhost

            Yeah, I don’t really know what aurors could be more like detectives than police officers so they would probably be in more plain clothes.

    • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

      Yeah, there is definitely something to be said for being an anonymous face in the crowd. And being polyjuiced as muggles wouldn’t have necessarily have meant anyone would have realized they were muggles since they still had their wands and could still perform magic. I would think the problem with this would be the fact that they were entering as visitors and aren’t all visitors required to submit their wands for identification?

      • RoseLumos

        I thought about that too, but how do they know who is a visitor or not? Surely the security guards haven’t memorized every employee’s face. If you just walk in like you belong I’m sure you could get through. Also, I wonder if the toilet coins replaced some part of that, since you need one just to get in.

        • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

          That’s right, when Harry visited for his hearing it did seem like he was just following a polite request to present his wand. Didn’t seem like there was anyone who was going to chase him down about it. Interesting point though with the coins, is the visitors entrance in the phone booth no longer operational?

  • ScarletGhost

    What I want to know is why did the trio have to go to the ministry itself? Perhaps there was too much protection or something but do you think it would’ve been possible to get Umbridge at her home? Maybe I forgot if they said it, but maybe Umbridge’s house had a fidelius charm on it or something. If not they could’ve found where she lived and stunned her and got the locket without going into the most dangerous, heavily guarded place in all of Britain. I’m not sure if anyone expected them to go after Umbridge to try to protect her, she wasn’t even a target until they found out she had the locket and no one else knows about that.

    • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

      I think this was brought up before but one of the problems would be actually finding out where she lived. We don’t know how readily available that kind of information might be, but perhaps that is something that they could have gone to the Order for. They wouldn’t have to have told them why and it seems like that information would be easier for Order Members who work in the Ministry to obtain.

      If they could find out where she lived I feel it certainly would have been worth a shot, though if they’d failed Umbridge would then be that much harder to get to since she’d know they were targeting her specifically. I suppose that is true either way though.

      • ScarletGhost

        I agree. I just think the ministry should’ve been a last resort. Perhaps they could’ve planned to go at her in her home first then if that didn’t work try at the ministry, because who expects to be attacked there. Maybe that was in the original draft and had to be cut lol.

        • MartinMiggs

          You said who expects to be attacked there [at their home]. I’m wondering what makes you say that especially when we consider the tragic events of a certain 1 legged character in book 4?

          • ScarletGhost

            Well Moody was always paranoid (although it’s not paranoia if it’s true.) But I think Umbridge thinks she’s safe in the Dark Lord’s new regime, she doesn’t seem the type to keep a million burglar alarms like Moody was. On the other hand we don’t really know Umbridge when she isn’t exerting her power over others so maybe she is afraid (especially after the centaur attack.)

          • MartinMiggs

            what i meant was Moody was attacked at his own home. So it is not totally unexpected to be attacked at home because it has happened before.

  • TheAmazingBouncingFerret

    Shouldn’t they have left Grimmauld Place as soon as they found out Snape was headmaster? I know it doesn’t matter because they end up leaving for good literally the next day, but if someone’s taken down the portrait it means somebody’s there, or at least was at some point. If Snape was a real DE, the fact that Phineas Nigellus reports he’s inside a giant bag surrounded by lots of crap and can’t move around the house anymore would definitely be enough for him to visit the house to check.

  • Narsista’s Mista

    Lets just talk about how terrifying McGonagall as headmistress under the imperius curse would be. Obviously, Voldemort would never go for this because of the difficulty of controlling such an influential puppet, especially with Snape insisting on taking the role himself. However, if her did choose to pursue this, the implication could have truly been awful. McGonagall, someone the trio and many others look up to and respect, would be reduced to a mindless drone, carrying out some dark tasks she would shoulder a lot of guilt about if she survived. The students less exposed to the unforgivable curses and unaware of the effects of the imperius wouldn’t realize the reason for the change in her behavior and attitude, and I can image some of the younger students still looking up to her and following her beliefs, mindlessly trusting the powerful figurehead she has become to them. I hate to imagine such a wonderfully complex character reduced to nothing more than a simple puppet.

    • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

      true, that would be a nightmare.
      On the other hand, I guess if Harry can shake off the Imperius Curse, so can McGonagall. Or the other teachers would notice and lift it from her.

      • Narsista’s Mista

        I guess that would really depend on how strong a curse Voldemort was able to place on her. While he is a powerful wizard, he is a little preoccupied with trying to rule the world and keeping track of all his other curses. If it had been his sole focus to imperius McGonagall, then I doubt she would have the capability to shake it off. But seeing as Voldemort’s preoccupied, she probably could at the very least have moments when she can shake it off.

        • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

          yes, it’s hard to predict who can resist and who can’t. Barty Crouch Jr. couldn’t for a long time, but he’s quite capable otherwise.

          • RoseLumos

            I really hope McGonagall would be able to break it. The idea of her performing Unforgivables on students is such a terrible image. I feel like she is like Molly Weasley in a lot of ways, in that she really cares about her students and that she can be a lot tougher than she appears. I hope she would fight it of for the sake of the students.

            Btw, can we talk about the scene in the film where she wants to lock up the Slytherin students? That got me upset because the book McGonagall would never, ever do that. She may be a Gryffindor, but I think she would do anything to protect all of the students, including Slytherins.

          • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

            Yes, that was out of character. Her Gryffindor against Slytherin moments are mostly connected to Quidditch, and she may be stern, but punishing a group for the bad behaviour of single persons is not her style.

    • MartinMiggs

      putting the Imperius curse on McGonagall is about as likely as Lockhart passing up an opportunity to boast about himself. Yeah not happening, not a snowball’s chance in you know where

  • Narsista’s Mista

    I always wondered with Phineas’s portrait stuffed in Hermione’s bag if he would still be able to hear any conversations. Would the bag block out any sound magically? Would the portrait simply have fallen down far enough in the magical worm hole that their voices would be too distant to hear? Or would he actually have been able to overhear their plans, if not their location, and relay them to Snape and in turn to Voldemort, if they had attempted it. The bag never seemed like a foolproof solution to me. I would feel more secure if they had taken it someplace random, like in the middle of the woods or somewhere like that. Carrying it around just seems like they’re placing a tracker on themselves.
    PS. I may be forgetting but do we ever find out if/when they get rid of it? Or does Hermione carry it around the whole book?

    • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

      I think she does carry it around, it’s in her handbag and she’ll never
      part with her handbag, come what may. Probably they put it back after things quiet down, but maybe not immediately.
      Phineas is able to tell Snape
      where Hermione and Harry are after Hermione mentions the name of the
      place while rummaging in the bag. That indicates that Phineas can only
      hear what they’re saying when the bag is open, but it could also be that
      they never said aloud where they are before.

  • RoseLumos

    Does anyone know if the Aurors are still working in the Ministry? Their job is to fight the dark arts and dark wizards, but they wouldn’t be sent on assignments to fight the Death Eaters if they are the ones literally running the government, right? Do they sit in the their office twiddling their thumbs? Have their assignments been changed to fight for the Death Eaters? Have they realized what is going on and try to infiltrate the Ministry? Or has the whole department been disbanded? I may be wrong, but I don’t recall any reference to them as a group for the rest of the book.

    Speaking of Aurors and going very off topic – is Tonks still working? It never mentions it but it doesn’t seem like she is. Maybe once she married Remus she had to go into hiding. It would be unsafe for her to go into the Ministry with all the anti-Muggle-born stuff. She’s both half blood (which I think is now risky) and married to a werewolf. I wouldn’t think the pregnancy is an issue since she is so early in it. I’ve known pregnant women who worked pretty much up to their due date (in fact, my friend is due in December and is still working as an ICU nurse in a hospital). Then again, her line of work is very dangerous so maybe she doesn’t want to risk it?

    • HowAmIGoingToTranslateThis

      Maybe there is a rule that says pregnant aurors have to do office work only. I’d compare an auror’s work to a police officer, firefighter or security person, whose job it is to do dangerous things in order to protect others.

      and since Tonks is one of the few active members of the Order it doesn’t make sense for her to work for the ministry, which is in some ways their enemy right now.

      Aurors also do guard jobs, they’ve been keeping watch in Hogwarts for the past year, maybe they just continue that, knowing that the dark wizards won’t attack the castle, because they’re already inside, it’s quite an easy job. I believe it’s likely that some aurors have quit their job, others have tried to move to other departments, some continue to work for the ministry under the new regime for whatever reason.
      Gawain Robards is the head of the auror department after Scrimgeour became Minister for Magic, and maybe he decided that everybody was free to decide if they continue working, in which case he was somehow able to protect them from the Death Eaters, or if they wanted to turn their back on the ministry and he’d let them go turning a blind eye. I don’t see them acting as a cohesive group, especially when there are so few people who are capable to do the job.

  • RoseLumos

    So according to Entertainment Weekly, in Fantastic Beasts American wizards call Muggles “No-Maj” (as in no magic).

    My whole American life has been a lie.

    My brother subscribes to EW so I should get the full issue this week. I wonder what other words I’m supposed to be mispronouncing.

    • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

      No. Just no.

      • MartinMiggs

        the same sentiment felt by the UK (and almost the rest of the world) when Americans say soccer instead of football

        • RoseLumos

          I actually agree with that one. On behalf of Americans, I apologize.

        • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

          You will be pleased to hear that it is catching on over here though. Several of the kids I’ve coached insist on calling it football and I’m so proud. They tend to be the more die-hard players though, and support non-American teams, because they have standards.

    • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

      Really though, this is just lacking in creativity. May as well just say “non-wizards”. Blah

      • RoseLumos

        I’m really hoping that it’s a time era phrase, since the movie takes place in the 20’s. Maybe we all go back to saying Muggles in the modern times. After all, think of all the offensive words used for minorities in that era.

        • ThatTimeRemusWaddiwasiedVoldy

          I can see that being the case.

  • DisKid

    You know just looking at a toilet makes you more likely to need the toilet….I hope these toilets didn’t unintentionally cause any accidents!

  • Dumbledore’s through & through

    I know it has already been talked about a lot, but I wanted to throw in my thoughts on why Snape was appointed Headmaster by Voldemort.

    I could imagine the position as a reward for Snape’s loyality so far. Last year he risked a lot for Voldemort, killed Dumbledore and delivered the information that nearly got Harry killed this summer. As the hosts already said, Voldemort is attached to Hogwarts and respects it as an old, powerful institution, so giving the position of the headmaster to Snape is really an honour. In voldemorts eyes, Snape is not only his most important follower right now, but he also shares his appreciation for the school. So he “deserves” the position. I think Voldemort despises most of his followers, especially the simply cruel ones like the Carrows, they are useful to him, but that’s it. He would never give such an important job to someone like that. Snape is someone he respects to an extend, and he “trusts” him with it. Also, Snape doesn’t have to take part in open fights, he’s safe in Hogwarts, and can leave the dirty bloody work to some inferiour DEs.

    At the same time, maybe Voldemort wanted not to include Snape in anything connected to close to the ministery? Because that’s another big institution he has under his command now, where he might need loyal followers. However, the ministery is a more powerful institution because it’s the goverment. So maybe Voldemort didn’t want Snape too close to this kind of power, so he could not get too powerful himself?

    If Snape had to ask to get the job, it was probably very very easy to convince Voldemort of it.

  • The Half Blood Princess

    I’m going to try to be on the look out for possible signs that Hermione knew about the Harry horcrux thing from now on.

    If the protagonist of the Harry Potter series thought things true, the Harry Potter series would be known as the Hermione Granger series.

    Andromeda ends up in a simular situation to AU living Lupin, except possibly for the guilt that Lupin ran off on Tonks.

    In the movie, Harry has this line where he shouts at Snape, “How dare you stand where he stood!” That was sort of how I felt, and I think how the trio felt as well, the first time I read the Snape-is-headmaster thing, when I thought that he murdered DD.

    I think that for Snape, Hogwarts was the first place he felt home. It’s even said during the narration for the forest again, in one of my favorite lines, which is something like, (I’m too lazy to get the book) “But he was home. He and Voldemort and Snape, the abandoned boys, had all found a home at Hogwarts.” Although Snape, Voldemort, and Harry have a lot of parallels, this is the only one explicitly said in the text.

    Im pretty sure Scrimgoer didn’t tell him it was missing, he said that it was the property of the school and not DD’s to give. Later, it is revealed that the sword that Snape sent to Gringotts was a fake, and the trio assumed that DD swapped them. We later find out that it’s actually Snape who swapped them.

    Maybe Voldy put DD’s killer in a position of power on purpose, to strengthen his claim that it was Harry after all.

    The muggle mother who dies, dies defending her children. It reminded me of Lily.

    I don’t think it would end well for any muggles that try to use a bathroom controlled by Voldy.