If you're anything like me, you are more than familiar with the world of Harry, Ron, and Hermione. I've read the books ten times over and never get tired of them. There's always something new to discover. Over the years I've found other ways to re-live them, such as the Universal Studios Wizarding World of Harry Potter and the Leavesden Studios tour (where they filmed the movies). Something about the stories has maintained its cultural relevance with themes of social justice, truth, friendship, courage, and fighting prejudice and oppression. For work, I have a 45-minute commute each way and I recently discovered a great podcast that lets me re-discover "Harry Potter" with a new insight: Binge Mode.
Mallory Rubin and Jason Concepcion host Binge Mode and dive deep into the "Harry Potter" books and movies. Each pod covers a certain set of chapters in each book. Once a book is completed, a pod delves into the corresponding movie. Mallory and Jason talk about the theme of each chapter set, make jokes and even award house points at the end of each episode to the character that compelled them the most. There are even a couple extra podcasts in which Mallory and Jason answer questions from fans, interview "Harry Potter" film actors or other critical people in the "Harry Potter" fandom world, or discuss a specific topic (like Quidditch). There are quite a few impressions that make you laugh and theories about why characters act in certain ways. Mallory and Jason have a lot of explanations that they unpack and play off of each other well.
As Mallory and Jason would say: Binge Mode contains adult content. There is quite a bit of sexual humor, so if that's not your thing this is not a podcast you would necessarily enjoy. Also, Mallory and Jason always give a fair warning that Binge Mode contains spoilers. If you haven't read "Harry Potter", it's not a podcast I would recommend listening to. I've been reading the set of chapters they cover on each pod and then listening to the pod. I recommend doing that so the content is fresh in your head.
This podcast has made my work commute so much more enjoyable. Admittedly, I spend the time I probably should be spending on work re-reading "Harry Potter", but is reading "Harry Potter" ever a waste of time? I appreciate the infinite ways in which fans can continue to live in the world of Hogwarts. J.K. Rowling's timeless, classic story teaches us again and again the importance of treating people with kindness and respect. We also learn that someone having magical blood doesn't make them better than anyone else. There are parallels in our own culture, and I'm excited for new generations to continue to discover this story.