Goblet of Fire 001

Episode 65 – GoF 27: The Little Spoon

FIELD TRIP!!! Put down that copy of Witch Weekly and head outdoors with Kat, Laura, Michael and special guest Alison (best known as Ali Wood on the forums) as they lead the way to Hogsmeade for a very chilly visit. We also send a very BIG thanks to our editor, Patrick, for saving us from some severe technical errors on this episode! Make sure to thank him in your comments!

On Episode 65 we discuss…

→ Episode 64 Recap: Underwater languages; Mermaid portrayals; Second Task participation; The Goblet’s contract; Gillyweed evolution
→ PQOTW Responses
→ Who misses Hermione the most?
→ Wizarding wars
→ How much does Sirius know about the Dark Mark?
Question of the Week
→ Check out the Alohomora! Store

To listen to the show, simply click the player below or direct download the episode. You can also subscribe to us on iTunes. For more information about the podcast and to find out how to be on the show, check out our Be On The Show! page.

Don’t forget to leave us a voicemail at our phone number: 1-206-GO-ALBUS (462-5287). Skype users can also send us a message to username AlohomoraMN. And as always, be sure to continue the discussion below or on our Forums!


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  • DolphinPatronus

    I also LOVE Michael’s voices. They make me smile :) I’d also Like to request that he PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE post something in his section on the forums when I got there & see that it says “No posts”.

    I’d also like to point out again (because I mentioned it in the “Staircase of Lies” thread both here & the forums) that the map has unwittingly busted TWO supposedly dead men at this point.

    • Michael Harle

      All fixed! I now have topics in my forum section. But I believe you saw that already, DolphinPatronus.
      ;{ )

      • DolphinPatronus

        I did & seeing it brought a smile to my face. :)

  • Dan Sharp

    About the Dark Mark tattoo: I don’t think that the fact that Voldemort’s closest followers have them is common knowledge. Sure, everyone knows what the Dark Mark is because it would be cast in the sky when Death Eaters killed, but the fact that such Marks are displayed on the arms of the “inner circle” may only be known outside of the DEs at this point by Dumbledore thanks to Snape. We assume that the Mark can be seen all the time but perhaps during the first war the Mark would only show up when Voldy called or when that particular DE needed to summon LV and that it is getting clearer all through out this year because LV wants to contact his other DEs (to prepare or scare them, take your pick) but can’t truly until he gets his proper body back. I can’t think of any other way Sirius wouldn’t have known about them, unless we go with the “real world” answer that Jo wanted to leave the reveal of Snape as DE till later in the book so had Sirius gloss over this point.

  • Jake Pontzer

    I haven’t finished listening to the episode yet; I’ve only completed the discussion about last weeks chapter.

    You guys read my comment and question aloud but you didn’t answer it!

    While I appreciate the discussion about the magic of the Gillyweed, I don’t think I really admitted to accepting last episode’s guest-host’s theory as true. In fact, I agree with Laura that it’s probably just simple configuration, whether it’s a naturally occurring spell or not.

    This idea simply made me consider the evolutionary aspects of the Harry Potter universe, where the magical gene exists.

    So, I suppose I will ask it again here: How long ago do you think the magical gene came about? And if it’s so beneficial to be magical, why don’t more people (or even everybody) have it? Are there drawbacks to being magical? We know that electronic devices don’t work when there’s “magic in the air”, which is a drawback in today’s world. But electrical devices are obviously very new in the history of the earth, and so this would not have influenced evolution.

    • awkwardjenny

      Hey! It was a great question. I’ve thought about that too. From an evolutionary genetics standpoint just because a mutation is beneficial doesn’t mean it will spread; a lot of this depends on the environment and population dynamics. Wizardism seems to be limited in the population because of its isolation. I imagine it arose early in our travels outside of Africa around 40,000 years ago (earlier and more of the population would share it), in one area where the mutation could spread quickly. When groups from that area spread to new places and continents they didn’t interbreed too much with the muggles which kept its numbers low wherever it went.

      If the trait was seen as advantageous by the wider population they would have bred more within it, but as we know from history most muggle groups regarded witches and sorcerors as evil and burnt them at the stake… so it isn’t likely a large number of them were breeding with wizards until maybe recently. Still, those that did would likely raise their kids in the wizard community where they were much more likely to marry another witch/wizard, keeping the gene within the community anyway. The only real way it could be shared on a larger scale is if wizards started breeding with muggles and marrying their children to other muggles. Which doesn’t seem like the norm.

      Genetic traits thart arise in populations spread by processes like gene flow and genetic drift, which will contribute to both harmful or advantageous mutations spreading in isolated populations due to the lack of new dna and limited breeding choices causing those with harmful mutations to keep replicating it in the population. This is common in island bound groups and religious isolates like the mennanites or Dutch boers (who, like the European royal families(gasp) have a severely high rate of a disease called porphyria that can be traced to a single mutation in one individual!) I see the wizard community in a similar way, in fact, it’s likely they have some other genetic traits that run in most wizarding families!

      From what I can tell wizardism is not a mendelian trait, so there are multiple genes at work in the expression of it. Maybe this makes it more likely that when the body transfigures they (wizards) are more capable of interacting with junk dna from multiple chromosomes and genes associated with their genetic history?

      • Guest

        Just kidding, that was an amazing comment. I can’t wait to hear what the hosts have to say.

  • gallifreyslocked

    I agree that Sirius knew about the Dark Mark and decided to bluff. My basis for this is that his own brother was a Death Eater, and his family had such strong connections with Voldy’s inner circle. This coupled with the fact he was a member of the Order AND spent time in Azkaban amongst dozens of captured Death Eaters makes it unrealistic that he wouldn’t have ANY idea about the mark. I think he just decided it was better if Harry didn’t start fixating on Snape again because he wants him to focus on making it through the Tournament. But that’s just what I always assumed when reading, I’m sure other people have very different opinions.

    • Dan Sharp

      It doesn’t seem like Sirius to hold back information from Harry of his own accord. Contrast what you are saying with how Sirius acts in OotP. He is practically jumping out of his skin to tell Harry everything he can and only Molly (and no doubt warnings from Dumbledore) seem to stop him. It’s in that book that we also learn that Sirius doesn’t see Harry as a Godson that needs protecting but as a replacement friend for James. Of course, it’s possible that these feelings only appear once he has stopped running from the Ministry and is eating 3 square meals a day.
      Yes, his brother was a DE, but I don’t think they spoke very much after Sirius ran away at the age of 15. His parents supported LV’s ideals of a world run by pure-blood wizards ( I get the impression that LV spent a few years openly whipping up support and followers before the war) but were never directly connected with the DEs other than Regulas signing up. Remember that RAB joined up before the 1st war had started and is credited as one of the first victims of it. As for the rest of his extended family and his time in Azkaban, I doubt Sirius spoke to them very much and find it even less unlikely that they were telling him all the secrets of their order.
      Still, having said all that, I still find the idea that Sirius was just trying to focus Harry on the tournament plausable if unlikely.

      • DolphinPatronus

        I have to agree with Dan & to further his point I’d like to add that I find it pretty doubtful that Azkaban is anything like Muggle prisions where prisoners have some interaction with eachother. It always seemed to me that the only time they were ever let out of their cells was if the seemingly rare occasion rose that they had a visitor. Like when Crouch took his dying wife to visit their son & we know how well that went.

      • RoseLumos

        Hey Dan – I am the one who recorded the AudioBoo and I agree 100% with you. I don’t think Sirius would EVER hold back information from Harry because it it too scary or to mature for him. Your OotP reference is right on – he can’t wait to tell Harry that Voldemort is about to hack his mind at all. The idea of Sirius holding back is a new theory and a different way to look at the situation but I highly doubt that Sirius wouldn’t tell Harry about the tattoo if he knew about it. Honestly I think it is just a mistake on Jo’s part. Sirius should have known about the tattoo’s but I have the feeling that she just didn’t want to reveal it too soon. However, she could of had Harry witness the Karkaroff/Snape scene and just forget to mention it to Sirius. That would have made more sense.

        • Dan Sharp

          Hey Rose, I think my other comments are a reasonable explaination of why Sirius didn’t know but the mistake thing is also highly possible. This was the book that J.K had to almost totally re-write because she had made a fatal mistake. BTW does anyone know what that fatal mistake was?

          • DolphinPatronus

            Wasn’t it a Weasley cousin?

          • SassyHedwig

            Yes, there was supposed to be a cousin named Mafalda, who was the daughter of a squib (Molly’s estranged second cousin) and a muggle. She was going to be a first year Slytherin in GOF and serve the same function as Rita Skeeter, being a gossip and eavesdropping on conversations. I remember reading an article where Rowling said that she cut Mafalda because there were limitations to what an 11 year girl could do compared to an adult so she had to rewrite GOF in order to further develop Rita as a character.

          • Dan Sharp

            Opps.. should have kept scrolling down. Wasn’t Mafalda first going to appear in CoS? I’m sure I heard that. I could just be mixing up GoF and CoS.

          • Dan Sharp

            Thanks for the reply Dolph but I’m almost certain the Weasley cousin was going to appear in CoS to give us the information that Harry and Ron find out when they use the Polyjuice potion but J.K couldn’t make it work so she dumped her.

          • DolphinPatronus

            If the cousin isn’t what you were refering to what was?

          • Dan Sharp

            Sorry Dolphin. you were correct about the Weasley cousin thing. I somehow got it in my head that she was a dropped character from CoS. Interestingly, googleing the rewrite today a few people seemed to think that the cousin was collateral damage for a bigger plot-hole that needed to be filled. Weather or not their was something else I can’t shake the feeling that Mafalda would have been a great character for the later books as some insight into Slytherin house and perhaps as the only Slytherin to join the D.A and fight in DH.

          • DolphinPatronus

            From everything I’ve come across about her she certainly seems interesting. But I think what I find MOST interesting is the fact that she was sorted into Slytherin. I can only think of 2 people sorted into that house that we know for sure are NOT pure-blood. What surprises me even more about that is that neither of her parents has any magical ability at all! She must’ve had some seriously strong Slytherin traits to get sorted there.

  • FawkesFan

    I wanted to put my two cents in on the Gillyweed discussion. I don’t see it as an evolutionary thing. I see it more as a transfiguration thing as well. One of you mentioned that it couldn’t be like polyjuice potion cause it is only one ingredient but maybe Gillyweed is not only unique in that aspect but could also be used to make potions and other items that make you transform. An example of this is the canary creams that the Weasley Twins make. The canary creams obviously contain something in them that transforms you into a canary for a short time. Maybe Gillyweed or some other plant with similar properties is used with other ingredients to get this funny transformation. Also, Gillyweed and the canary creams aren’t a FULL transfiguration. Harry is still mostly himself and so is Neville when he is a canary. If I remember right Neville doesn’t become a tiny little bird. He just sprouts some feathers.

  • Elvis Gaunt

    Isn’t it strange that Sirius doesn’t believe that Little Crouch could have been a Death-Eater because he was too young whereas he believes his brother was (he also thought his brother was a coward). I think they were both about the same age when they died/ supposedly died. Turns out that Little Crouch was in fact evil and his own brother was not only a good man but a brave one too.

  • Dr. Prabhakar

    Please upload smaller size file of podcast.

  • Elvis Gaunt

    Great to hear my comments read out on a regular basis :) Since, you guys asked this question on the show, I am saying: I am a girl. When I was listening to some of your old episodes, someone mentioned during the Chamber of Secrets discussion that Voldemort’s middle name was Elvis in French and I was laughing so hard. I thought that it just has to be my user name. Cheers!

  • froggyhpmb3

    When you guys mentioned that there is a difference between human transfiguration into animals and being an anima guys it made me wonder what other forms of this type of transfiguration do we see in the series. The only one that came to mind happened earlier in this book when Malfoy was turned into a ferret. I think this only makes that punishment crueler than before because he wasn’t in control of his actions. However the other thing I thought about was, Krum was very clearly in control of his actions. When I read the other scene over I noticed a part where it “squeaks and streaks off towards the dungeons”. I had always assumed that Malfoy was intentionally heading to the dungeons to get Snape or to go to the common room. Does this make that merely coincidence?

    • Elvis Gaunt

      Yes, ferret Malfoy was intentionally heading to the dungeon. That’s reason why Fake Moody says, “I think not” or something of that sort.

      • Emily Theurer

        I agree. I think that even when wizards are transfigured by someone else or transfigure themselves, it is purely an appearance change. I think they retain their ability to think and feel as humans though they may look like an animal. Just as Krum was conscious of his intentions while having the head of a shark, I think Malfoy was conscious of what was happening to him and was trying to head back to the safety of the dungeons, out of Moody’s reach.

        • froggyhpmb3

          I just looked over the section in the Tales of Beedle the Bard. It says: “This, as every schoolchild knows is the fundamental difference between being an animagus and Transfiguring oneself into an animal. In the case of the latter, one would become the animal entirely, with the consequence that one would know no magic, be unaware that one had ever been a wizard, and would need somebody else to Transfigure one back to one’s original form.”

          So I think that he had no idea what he was doing at the time.

  • ArchdukeSeverus

    The idea of Gillyweed and genes is very interesting. It got me thinking that human to animal transformations could work in the same way. This could make sense as humans and all other living things share a large amount of genes. Transfiguration and Gillyweed could work by mutating cells as radiation or asbestos might (but with much different effects) in this way it causes visible mutations in the characteristics of animals or other things. In this way transfiguration could be the very precise focusing of high amounts of energy to cause particular mutations.

    • Leah McCurdy

      Yeah, interesting thought. There’s also comments about Epigenetic change and transfiguration in the forums. Super interesting ideas!!

  • Emily Theurer

    In regards to the talk about how Mermish is understandable to wizards underwater but screeching above the surface, I think it does have to do with how sound waves work in water vs. air. In water, sound waves move much more slowly than through the air, which is why we as humans cannot understand each other when we speak to each other underwater. Maybe how Mermish works is that the language moves at a much higher frequency so the sound is understandable underwater. When the merpeople break the surface of the water, the frequency of their speech retains the same speed, but since the waves are now moving through a medium that conducts the waves faster, wizards are now only able to hear screeching. Maybe Mermish is just a normal human language moving at a much higher frequency. It’s all about acoustics.

    • DolphinPatronus

      This is a geat therory! I really like it,

  • PixieDragon137

    I think I snorted on my coffee when Kat said Sirius can snuggle with Buckbeak and be the little spoon, lol! Great episode guys

    And thanks to Patrick for making sure everything runs smoothly!

  • Olivia Underwood

    Hey guys, tried to send an audioboo but for some reason it won’t post. I just had a quick question about the next chapter, and it concerns Barty Crouch Jr and the excuse that he gives when Dumbledore and Harry are searching for Crouch Sr. He says that “Snape said something about Crouch…” and I just felt that this was a rather poor excuse. If Dumbledore had asked Snape later about seeing Mad Eye then Snape could easily have revealed that Mad Eye had been lying (because he never actually saw Snape, just on the Marauder’s Map). So, my question is, did you think it was a good enough alibi, and if not, what would have been a stronger one?

    • Dan Sharp

      I think that he had to trust that he had done such a good job at being Moody that Dumbledore wouldn’t bother to ask Snape about it, and he was right.

      • Olivia Underwood

        Yes, this is very true, and it’s amazing how much Dumbledore actually trusts Mad Eye, as we see throughout GoF and later, given the fact that he does have issues concerning trust and secrets in general, with Snape, his own brother, Harry etc.

  • Albert Cashier

    I just don’t think that knowledge of the Dark Mark as a tattoo what at all commonplace and I don’t think Sirius could have known about it. He cut off ties with his family at 16 and since he was a year older than Regulus, that means he only knew it through the grapevine when Regulus became a Death Eater (at 16, very young). We never hear Snape explains the tattoo at the end of the book and I think before then, no one had even the slightest idea how Death Eaters managed to identify themselves. Nope, I don’t think Sirius was bluffing, i think he genuinely doesn’t have any idea. The Dark Mark was reserved for Voldy’s innermost circle anyway, and Sirius isn’t exactly best friends with any of them. That paired with the fact that they appear as faint scars when they’re not being used to summon makes me think that the revelation of the Dark Mark tattoos didn’t happen within the majority of the Wizarding community until after Snape shows Fudge. I think this was something Dumbledore knew but chose to keep secret for the sake of his post and his potions teacher. So 8 months late but yeah.

  • TimDrakeFan

    James wasn’t an auror audioboo person (RoseLumos?) JKR said he was rich and didn’t need a job