What You Need To Know Ahead Of The Magicians Season 5 Premiere
The Magicians Season Four gave us too little magic and too much heartache. Season five promises to deliver more of the same.
After the devastating events of season four, it’s hard to imagine what season five will look like without Quentin Coldwater. The Magicians at its heart was always Quentin’s story. He was both the victim and the hero. The Everyman who was a deeply flawed but determined champion. We related to him, rooted for him, and yes, wanted to be like him. The core group is no different. He was their conscience, their mascot, and their loving friend. Without him to guide them, how will they go on?
Magic comes at a price. Season four showed what a lack of magic looked like. Season five will be the polar opposite. The literal flood gates have opened and everyone is affected. Too much of a good thing is bad. The quest this season will see the group reconciling the fact that some regulations are necessary.
Saving Eliot and the rest of his friends cost Quentin his life. A price he willingly paid even if his friends were heartbroken. The fascist Library and the Monster were defeated. Magic has been restored. Unfortunately, now there are no controls and as in everything, moderation is good, free for alls are bad.
The group has faced Gods, monsters, fairies, totalitarians, amputations, and political elections. They weathered all those storms with humor and love. Things Quentin had in spades. Without his hopeful innocence, they are rudderless. The massive release of magic into the world has created a huge problem. Everyone and everything is vulnerable to the power surge.
Regardless, Quentin would have loved all the magic. It would finally have validated everything he believed. Instead of being the freaky try-hard, he would have been a valued, expert. Now that he is gone the group must go on without him. They are bent and broken, despondent and doubtful, but the end of the world is here and they’ve got to pussy up.
The teaser and official trailer each show the hole Quentin left will not be filled, but life goes on none the less. The teaser exemplifies everything great about the show. It’s the end of the world, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have time to see Avengers: End Game. Incredible realism mixed with the fantastical fan-girl absurdity that is The Magicians is what gives it the widespread appeal it has.
The Magicians has some explaining to do.
Who is the Dark King from the season four finale? The glimpses we have of Filory show a mostly normal looking kingdom even if Fen seems a little cranky with Margo. There was a time jump along with the Dark King’s arrival. Maybe this is a long game set up for season six? Will Julia regain any of her lost Goddess powers? Is Alice really running the Library? It’s hard to believe she has time to galavant all over, questing with the group if she is busy trying to run what equates to the magical government. What effect will Marina’s reveal have on the group? Will they even find out she is Fogg’s daughter? With Quentin’s vacancy, will she have an increased role?
Some things have changed.
Magic is back. There is more than enough to go around. In fact, there is too much. The remaining group of Fen, Josh, Kady, Julia, Margo, Eliot, Alice, and Fogg are teaming up into some surprising pairs. Julia and Fogg who had a difficult start are finding value in their partnership. Josh and Margo are still together, and Fen is running Filory. Her and Margo may not see eye to eye on the day-to-day though and square off with knives and axes. These two weren’t always best buds but they did have a healthy respect for one another. What could have caused the crack?
Some things stayed the same.
The most powerful characters on the show, Julia, Alice, and Kady are still being questioned for their gender. They are often written off, ignored or discounted. In the four-minute-long Comic-Con scene a gentlemanly swine from Filory is there to bestow a quest on Quentin. He finds Julia instead. In typical fashion, he refuses to give the quest to Julia because she is a woman.
No one has ever accused the series of being afraid to tackle reality, even in this fantasy world. White privilege, feminism, male toxicity, fluid sexuality, and responsibility are all explored in an entirely relaxed fashion that allows the importance of the issue to be the focus. Too many other shows either ignore these issues or treat them as moral commodities to be doled out during sweeps week. Nothing is cheapened on this show and we are better for it.
The Magicians is an emotional show. It takes a toll to love the characters. They are infuriating, relatable, and beleaguered. The extended trailer shows some pretty disturbing things. Sea monsters, razor-toothed woodland creatures, unchecked spells, killer light bombs, and bougey dinner parties. It’s a lot to handle and for some of our group, it’s more than they can.
Each feels guilt over his death and each is processing that differently. Alice, who always gets a little lost in her own path, is obsessed with fixing things for him. Julia lost both her powers and her best friend. She wants both back but has no idea where to start without Q who knew magic best. Eliot feels the most guilty as he thinks he is the most responsible for Q’s death. They must come together and honor his memory before it is too late. It seems Alice has not learned anything and is taking chances with highly dangerous magic. Old habits die hard, and she always will think she is the only one who can save them.
Margo is still slaying the one-liners game in the way only she can. She’s both smart, snarky, and a feminist. Who doesn’t love it? She’s heard telling Eliot in the official season five trailer to” grow a cunt”, and he responds in perfect fashion. “Bitch I would if I could.” It is Eliot who gets the final word though. “I mean, honestly fuck Netflix, this is peak television”. Ironically The Magicians season four dropped on Netflix today. Binge the whole season and prepare for season five premiering on SYFY January 15, 2020. Catch up on all our coverage here.
As the Television Editor for Signal Horizon, I love watching and writing about genre tv. I grew up with old school slashers, but my real passion is television and all things weird and ambiguous. When I not watching and writing about my favorite movies and series, I’m introducing my family to the wonderful world of sci-fi, fantasy, and horror. My only regret there is not enough time in the day to watch everything.