Review: The Magicians 1.3 – Consequences of Advanced Spellcasting

SyFy marketed The Magicians wonderfully. They showed all the magic and fucking that the show had to offer in the teaser. Women floating in a skirt? Check. Floating while fucking? Check. A shirt being blown off a woman in a scene that turned out to be more rapey than sexy? Check. It was marketed wonderfully because it caught the attention of everyone looking for a Harry Potter fix, but with sex as the reviews the show quotes over and over tell us. So much so that they made it their tagline… I checked it out because I downloaded the SyFy app on my X-Box One and realized that there wasn’t shit to watch on SyFy anymore. I figured, well… let’s watch their one and only new show. It is Harry Potter with adults. It’s kind of sad in that way because the author of the books doesn’t outright acknowledge that, but he sure as shit doesn’t shy away from it. The actual premise is that it’s Harry Potter mixed with Narnia and it’s like a grad school course. Because you only get invited after college… and yet the show complains that the magicians don’t know enough and they don’t have enough time and wait… maybe if they were kids they would have had enough time! See what I’m getting at? Change the age, change the locations and keep the accents, but it’s still a Potter knockoff. Don’t worry, I actually think that knockoffs can be fun and enjoyable.

At any rate our main character is Quentin Coldwater, he’s the chosen one, but who the fuck knows why. It’s the typical, “I don’t actually do anything, I’m just told I’m special” type of chosen one story. He’s a dick. There’s nothing really to like about this guy because when he discovers magic he turns into a complete dick to his best friend Julia. Sure he had a crush on her and she dated his friend instead. Sure she told him to grow up when it came to the Narnia esque books (Fillory in this world). Sure she… wait, that’s all she did other than tell him she knew he was in a hospital for being mental. Also we’ve seen her perform more magic than him at this point in the show, but hey… chosen one.

The third episode sees their two worlds meet again. Julia has been practicing magic with a bunch of… I don’t know what the fuck to call them. Basically magicians that don’t get to go to school and have to steal their spells anyway they can and as we learn, that can include sexual favors if need be. As we saw at the end of the second episode, there’s a traitor in the midst at the school and Quentin and Eliot track down a stolen book and that leads them to Julia. Quentin and Julia have another unprovoked argument in which Quentin furthers Julia’s motivation of learning magic in spite of him.


As for the rest of the episode, they assign a magic discipline and we learn that Penny can transport himself with a thought (like Jumpers), and that the teacher lady that does nothing but drop her accent can do it too… with a car though. Penny is apparently really fucking powerful and yet not our main character or the chosen one. I kind of hope he dies so we don’t have to deal with his one emotion that he busts out for everything… confusangry, confused and angry at the same time.

Alice’s story is about her brother haunting a fountain. We learn what happened to him and it’s pretty fucking lame actually. He was doing too much magic and turned into nothing but magic. On the plus side, Alice won’t be releasing anything dangerous shit trying to find him since he’s gone-gone now. She’s leaving the school supposedly and frankly I don’t care because it’s obvious the she’ll be back and that her and Quentin are going to lose their rose petals together.

The endings of each episode are pretty awkward. This one has Alice leaving and Margo telling her, “I like challenges.” That’s how it ends. I said, “Booo” outload. Even with all my bashing there were some good parts, but really there needs to be better character development. Right now Elliot and Margo are the only characters I like and something tells me I shouldn’t actually like their snotty attitude that much. Otherwise more character development please. There’s been zero effort in that, they’re just throwing these characters into situations and frankly without getting to know them, I don’t give two shits who lives or dies. It’s better than most SyFy shows, but it needs work. Because it’s SyFy it’ll run five seasons before being cancelled so that they don’t have to pay for syndication.

Score: 3/5

The Magicians 1.3 – “Consequences of Advanced Spellcasting” Director: Scott Smith Writer: Henry Alonso Myers Airs Monday’s on SyFy