Episode 13C: Hallows and Goodbyes


Well, this is it, witches. Buckle in for an extra long episode, because this is the LAST (third) part of our discussion of the LAST (seventh) book (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows) and we have a lot of ground to cover and old friends to mourn.

But don’t you worry. Even though we make about a hundred jokes about it, we’ll be back with more moviesodes and minisodes before the summer is through!

{TW for sexual assault, rape culture}

Download this false finale episode 

Published by

Hannah McGregor

I am an Assistant Professor in Publishing @ SFU. My areas of research include periodical studies, media studies, middlebrow culture, contemporary and early twentieth-century Canadian literature, critical race studies, and digital humanities. I also make a fortnightly podcast about Harry Potter.

9 thoughts on “Episode 13C: Hallows and Goodbyes”

  1. I absolutely love the podcast! But was confused why you think Hogwarts is a private school as you comment on this I think in the first podcast? There are no mention of school fees at any point in the books. The weasleys never mention worries about school fees, only about the price of books and equipment e.g wands and brooms and how expensive Lockhart books will be. Also harry in the first book expresses fear that he has no money for school books etc and Hagrids like don’t worry your mum and dad left you money for that. Similarly Tom Riddle expresses this concern to dumbeldore and dumbeldore says they have a special fund for students who need help with books and equipment! No mention of school fees! Also due to J.Ks socialist disposition and views on education, I can not believe she would make the primary magical institution a private shool. Also when you mentioned actors In your mini podcast you mentioned only american actors to replace charcters! Would u expect them to do english accents or give it a new twist?? YOU GUYS ARE GREAT!! Love your podcast sosooo much. Thank you 🙂

    1. What we were picking up on at the time was the letter of admission (suggesting a specialized, rarified educational environment), Neville’s confession that he almost didn’t get in, the matching uniforms (often associated with private schools), and the sense that expensive materials are required (hence the Weasley family’s anxiety). We don’t learn about the special fund for students later, and the revelation about tuition being free comes from Rowling’s paratextual addition (there’s actually no textual evidence for or against it). Even with her socialist leanings, though, the tropes of the British public school are there throughout, and the novels are invoking the genre of British public school novels.

      1. Most schools in the UK have school uniform, so the association maybe slightly different to in the US and Canada…

        Also, I read Neville’s comment that he almost didn’t in as a worry by an eleven year old with self-asteem issues, who has always been compared to how great his parents were at magic – and not based in fact… Something that probably arose out of him thinking… “Oh, but it’s summer, shouldn’t my letter have come by now!” haha

  2. Hi Magical Beings!
    I’m binge hearing your podcast, Hannah Wittonr (youtube) brought me here xD
    I really like the humor,(2nd book’s review the origin of azkaban is probably alcatraz, I’m likely wrong though hah.I’m still there while writing this)
    I have a recommendation for you both.
    Christopher Nuttall ‘s Schooled in Magic series. (magic school, but soo brutal, OMG)
    I have a few problems with the magic being restricted to wands for whatever reason but you can do magic without them,(ex. Albus’ hand magic in the film goblet of fire, dimming the flame around the room before the goblet to chooses the participants), but you’re not supposed to?
    I’m seriously hoping that Nuttall’s series continues but I’m not sure I want it adapted, I feel like a lot would be lost, as HP lost and gained weird sh*t.

    Please continue with reading stuff, even if its a smaller book list, like all souls trilogy by Deborah Harkness, or even …TWILIGHT…(facepalms) I will listen if it’s you gals saying words…

    Thank you for the giggles.

  3. So, I think there’s at least some textual evidence that Snape isn’t just on the good side because of an infatuation with Lily, but because he has come to believe in the cause. In the very last memory Snape shares with Harry, when he is talking to Phineas Nigellus, Nigellus says,

    ‘Headmaster! They are camping in the Forest of Dean! The Mudblood – ‘

    Then Snape stops him and says “Do not use that word!”

    It seems like, in the end at least, Snape wants Harry to know that he is in favour of the rights of all muggle-borns not just Lily.

    Also when Dumbledore is trying to defend his decision to raise Harry as a pig for slaughter he rhetorically asks Snape how many people he’s seen die and Snape responds with “Lately, only those I couldn’t save.” This seems to imply that he doesn’t just care about saving Lily’s son, but everyone that he can.

    I also really liked the interpretation of Snape being so great at occlumency because of his grief for Lily. One of my favorite lines from this book was “Grief, it seemed, drove Voldemort out. Though Dumbledore, of course, would have said that it was love”, but I never thought of what that might imply about Snape.

  4. Also, from what I understand Voldemort always read Snape as being simply infatuated with Lily and Dumbledore read his feelings for Lily as love. I find it hard to believe that Rowling would write Snapes character in a way that Voldemort rather than Dumbledore has the correct understanding of his character especially since self-sacrificing love is shown as being the most powerful magic in the series.

    I also think it’s worth noting that Snape chooses to show Harry the scenes of Lily telling him off even though he ends up looking like a massive jackasss. I think the memories taken as a whole show Snape being a dick and treating Lily as the exception to his anti-muggle/muggleborn leanings, then him being responsible for her death, then him feeling incredible remorse and finally being reformed with his genuine love for Lily being the catalyst for that change.

  5. I read Snape’s dislike of the word mudblood differently — that it’s precisely the word that drove Lily away from him and thus a word upon which he is fixated. Hence his anger at the use of the word but lack of anger at observing Hermione’s abuse for being muggle-born.

    Dumbledore does seem to have been ultimately right, that Snape’s love for Lily drove him to self-sacrifice. My argument is that his self-sacrifice doesn’t stop that love from being obsessive, unhealthy, and far from romantic. My larger issue is with the romanticization of a love that might make him do heroic things but ultimately doesn’t make him a better person.

    THAT SAID, I have some renewed thoughts on this in light of The Cursed Child. But no spoilers.

  6. I think this is a good point to discuss my disappointment that Ravenclaw’s Horcrux turned out to be a diadem. From the set-up that Rowling had given us in the prior books, I was pretty sure that it would wind up being a wand. (I had a LOT of time to think about this between books 6 and 7. I had the Snape/Lily relationship almost completely figured out by the time book 7 came out.)

    Rowling had used references to the Tarot several times before, most specifically in Trelawney’s lamentations about the “Lightning-struck Tower”. (Also look at images of the Tarot card for “The Moon” and compare it to Book III.) Rowling had set up that LV was looking for a significant item from each of the four founders, and we had already seen the Sword of Gryffindor, the Locket of Slytherin (presumably round), and the Cup of Hufflepuff. That gives us Cups, Swords, and Discs, three of the four suits of the Tarot Minor Arcana. The Fourth suit is wands, so I was predicting it would be the “Wand of Ravenclaw” and was mightily put out when Rowling didn’t go there. Hmmfph.

    Additionally, your discussion about Snape led me to this thought: He’s the complete inverse of the traditional “tragic hero”. Usually, the tragic hero is of high birth, a wonderful guy, full of many virtues, but deep down has one tragic flaw that leads to his ruin. But in Snape, we have someone of low birth, a terrible person, with no visible good qualities, but deep down there is one virtue that leads to his redemption.

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