The Magicians Episode Five Recap

 By Alice Russell

After yet another action and sarcasm place episode of SYFY’s The Magicians, we the viewers are left with even more questions than we went in with. With six more episodes left in the season, there should be enough time for the showrunners to answer some of these questions, but you never know with The Magicians. One second everything is about to be tied up nicely with a bow, the next second everyone is dead and someone has their hands cut off.

Yesterday the fifth episode of the third season of The Magicians aired, giving us another dose of grown-up-Harry Potter-mixed-with-Narnia realness. There’s dragons, there’s depression monsters, there’s a field of fairy embryos! What more could you want from a SYFY show? While there were many (many, many) fun parts about this most recent episode, it didn’t seem to further the plot in any meaningful way, other than Julia transferring the small amount of magic she has left over to Alice, who, by the end of the episode, seems to overexert herself and have a sort of magic seizure. Oh, and the mushrooms that turned out to be fairy eggs. That might be important.

One of the most exciting aspects of the newest episode was the guest appearance by geek-extraordinaire Felicia Day, who joined the cast as a guest star playing Poppy Kline, the mysterious, morally ambiguous, dragonolist with a bit of a mean streak (but who wouldn’t be a little mean after being stranded on a raft for three weeks with the magical embodiment of depression?). Poppy Kline is a member of the mysterious third year class at Brakebills (grad school version of Hogwarts, basically) who went missing during a spring break gone wrong. Poppy Kline just happens to have one of the magic keys that the main crew is searching for, so it all seems just dandy, except the key seems to have a 50% survival rate. Those who hold the key start to see a projection of all their darkest thoughts, and that usually ends about as well as one can imagine. But, of course, since this is a TV show, they lose the magic key to a dragon. Happens to the best of us.

The darker parts of this episode are lightened with the conundrum that Margo and Eliot find themselves in. In last week’s episode, Margo found herself forced to marry the teen heir to a neighboring kingdom, who just so happening to become heir by killing his older brother at his wedding ceremony to Margo. So things weren’t great there. Long story short, Margo found herself trapped in a cell in the dungeon of her own castle trying to persuade her young husband that human bodies were so gross that he couldn’t possibly want to consummate their marriage. In a fun call back to the break out roll of Hale Appleman, who plays King Eliot, as Tobey in the 2007 cult class “Teeth”, Margo convinces prince Fomar that women have toothed genitals. That seemed to have put the over-eager prince off the idea for a while. That is, until the fairy queen demands that the marriage be consumated. She, at the advice of Eliot, sends them on a honeymoon of sorts, where Margo and Eliot discover the field of growing fairies. They manage to snag a few of the egg-like pods and also get Prince Fomar to believe that he and Margo consummated their marriage (by drugging him and having a frog bite him…remember the teeth?).

The episode ended on quite a cliffhanger. We see Julia, relaxing free of magic in a park, reading a book on a blanket, when Reynard, the trickster god who brutally murdered her friends and assaulted her, shows up, says he is there to stay, only for Julia to wake up to discover he was a dream. But was he really just a dream, or something more?

Our last shot of the episode is of Alice Quinn, who was recently given Julia’s magic, shaking on the floor and foaming at the mouth, with the only person nearby Penny, who is unfortunately an astral projection that no one can see and who can barely move any physical objects. Alice’s storyline since the beginning of the show has been fraught with difficulties. Will this seizure add another problem to her life?

Overall, this episode was another exciting romp into the world of The Magicians, but hopefully the next episode moves the plot along a bit more.

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