Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

[SOM #24]

Also Contains SOEE #31: The History of Hogwarts

This is the first of eight reviews of the Harry Potter films. Each episode will cover different characters and focus-points relevant to that particular story. It will involve discussion with my guests and occasional Gonzo essays, punctuated by rare pieces of Potter-related audio and the wonderful scores that have enriched every movie.

For The Philosopher’s Stone (or if you are trans-continental; the Sorcerer’s Stone) I enlisted the aid of Leah Haydu, lead-host and editor at GamerDork ReRolled, Kelly Brown, one half of The Married Gamers and for the first time on a dedicated movie review series since her run on Kill Bill for Digital Cowboys Movie Club, my wife; Sharon Shaw.

In this one we discuss the tripod (Harry, Ron and Hermione) at age eleven, the Dursleys, Richard Harris as Dumbledore, Professor McGonnagal, dating centaurs, awesome tattoos and why at least one of us identifies very strongly with a core character. The main theme running through is the lighter tone of this first installment and why in retrospect it serves a very fine purpose. We also discuss the differences from the original book, which we will do in every subsequent episode.

This episode also contains a second part: The History of Hogwarts.

This is an accompaniment to the Harry Potter movie reviews. It is an audio timeline of the significant events of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and wizardry as detailed in the Harry Potter book series. For timing purposes most of this was only lightly referenced in the films so this may help clarify a great deal of historical detail for all but the most die hard of Potter fans who will already know it.

It is mostly narrated by myself but there are some discussions with the guests of the eighth and final podcast from this series: namely Leah Haydu of GamerDork ReRolled, Sharon Shaw of Gonzo Planet, James Carter of Cane and Rinse, Daniel Floyd of Extra Credits and Jake Del Toro of Last Save Loaded.


Author: Alex Shaw

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  1. I just discovered your Harry Potter podcasts a few days ago and have really been enjoying them! My husband and I are big Harry Potter fans and it’s fun to find people who are similarly obsessed. I’ll be looking forward to listening to the rest.

  2. Hi Meghan and welcome aboard the good ship Geek obsession. One of the best/worst/best aspects of Gonzo is having to immerse myself in the series’ I’m delving into. I pretty much think about nothing else for the duration the podcasts go on. It’s great for becoming a mini-expert on every subject I cover but I’m sure my wife is now Batman’d out.

    Hope you enjoy the rest of the Potter shows. Be sure to find the Hogwarts timeline episode we did.


  3. Is that an US movieposter? Hermione looks so us-americanized.

    • It is. the first two Potter posters in the USA were painted by Drew Struzan who was responsible for some of the most iconic 80’s movie artwork (Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Back to the Future etc) in fact if you look at the Gonzo Movie Review gallery, wherever possible I have used Drew’s version of the poster. Fills me with childlike wonder and excitement for special adventures again.

      • Yes, eighties, that fits :-) I first thought of the girl from “Christine”. He put her complete lower face forward beside the make-up

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