We’re not ready for the raised stakes in The Magicians Roundtable 3X03 “The Losses of Magic”
This week was rougher than the seas Eliot (Hale Appleman) was sailing on. After our High King has a run-in with pirates, the first key opens a door inside the Muntjac. Eliot, Fen (Brittany Curran), and Fray (Madeleine Arthur) all disappear, leaving Benedict (Harvey Guillen) as acting regent. When Margo (Summer Bishil) gets word, she convinces the Fairy Queen to send her on a rescue mission. There, she encounters the Pirate King, who turns out to be a fine AF boss lady. She discovers the terms of freedom meant allowing the Muntjac to be mounted by the pirate ship. Margo tries communicating with the sentient ship, asking for its opinion. The Fairy Queen (Candis Cayne) sees this and kills off the pirates, but also punishes Margo for trying to steal her eye back by making Rafe (Sergio Osuna) go insane.
On Earth, Julia (Stella Maeve) goes off in search of Kady (Jade Tailor) and discovers what she is planning to save Penny (Arjun Gupta). She agrees to help, and they conjure Asteroth (Julian Richings), who is a surprisingly laid back demon. He removes the cancer from within Penny, but things don’t go as planned. Lamprey-Quentin (Jason Ralph) follows Alice (Olivia Taylor Dudley) to her parents’ house, where she is initially convinced that family friend Carol is the lamprey. When her father notices the movement on Quentin’s neck, he disappears. Later, Alice finds him in the garage without the lamprey, and they realize it’s in the house. She suspects it’s in Stephanie (Judith Hoag), but it turns out it jumped into Daniel (Tom Amandes). After extracting the truth out of Alice about its family, she shocks and kills it. Unfortunately, she may have done the same to her father.
Oh, The Magicians, how we both hate and love you. Our roundtable is itching to share, so let’s meet them:
Carol (@angelwow6970) – Writer, TV Nerd, Lover of all things magic
Ali (@AliGhezelbash) – Engineer by day, “Genre” film, TV and comic book fan by day and night. Great stories can enlighten and entertain.
Diane (@Dianthrax) – Writer, Activist, Advocate, Auntie
Katherine (@Shank35Shank) – fangirl, bookseller, and unrepentant dork
Lauralea (@DExHooker) – Writer, dog momma, Stitchers obsessive, Camsten addict.
1. There were a lot of crazy moments in this episode. Which was your favorite?
Carol (@angelwow6970): Julia’s encounter with the homeless woman. I believe it was the Fairy Queen that contacted her. Julia is part of the quest to restore magic. She still possess es magic and I think the Fairy Queen senses it. She’s been known to give a little push to humans.
Ali (@AliGhezelbash): The confrontation between dad-lamprey and Alice. It was heartfelt and dramatic in the moment, and important in the subsequent consequences. A pretty powerful moment for me.
Diane (@Dianthrax): Oh man, this episode was so full of ‘OMG’ and ‘WTF’ moments that it’s hard to pick a single favorite! For me personally, though, it had to be when Margo crushed her captured eye and destroyed her chances of ever recovering it. All hail Queen Margo The Destroyer.
Katherine (@Shank35Shank): I have to say the most human messed up moment was when Alice’s mom tried to kiss…err, maul Quentin while he was comforting her in Saran Wrap. I couldn’t stop laughing and cringing at once. Poor Q. Fillory crazy for me was boat sex. I mean who knew? I didn’t.
Lauralea (@DExHooker): Margo talking to the ship. Honestly, you don’t always see the human side of Margo – the Queen inside her always tends to rule -. but watching her interact with the ship on such a human level was incredible. My favorite scene of the episode…probably one of my top 5 favorite scenes of the series.
2. While our hearts go out to both sides, did you find yourself more with the lamprey or Alice on this one?
Carol: I’m with the Lamprey on this one. Alice killed his entire family for pleasure. She admitted it. I can’t blame the Lamprey for wanting revenge.
Ali: The lamprey considering he lost his family. Though, I did feel for Alice that she was not herself when this took place. The loss the lamprey endured trumps all for me.
Diane: I didn’t choose a side- obviously I didn’t want Alice or Quentin to die, but I suspected the lamprey wanted to punish Alice rather than kill her, making her parents the targets. Was I rooting for the lamprey to get it’s vengeance? No. But I also think the outcome was more than fair, given the circumstances.
Katherine: Alice is my girl but I felt so awful for the lamprey. It lost its whole family at once. Humanity has ways to keep you from killing for “pretty lights”.
Lauralea: While I get where the lamprey was coming from, going after Alice’s family like it did, that just wasn’t cool. I’m not okay with it playing inside Q… I’m not okay with it forcing Alice into a position where she had to basically kill her dad. I am always and will always be an Alice girl – I’m not okay with anything that hurts her.
3. Speaking of which, do we believe Alice when she says the old her is gone forever?
Carol: Yes I do believe the old Alice is gone forever. 99% anyway. She went through a drastic magical change. I’d be worried if it hadn’t changed her. That 1% holds onto her love for Quintin.
Ali: I do believe she has passed the point of no return to the old Alice. She cannot forget what she did, and I believe it has forever changed her. There may be glimpses of the old Alice, but Alice is not as she once was.
Diane: I do believe the old Alice is gone forever. There’s no way someone can go through everything Alice did and NOT change on a fundamental level.
Katherine: We lose parts of ourselves every day. Living does that to you. The thing that makes Alice Alice Is her passion for knowledge and lust for love. She’s lost, not gone.
Lauralea: Not in the slightest. I think that the innocence of Alice has always been slightly overrated. Alice was never innocent. She came into this with the single solitary intention of bringing back her brother – she has always had undertones that didn’t always come through. I think our Alice is still there, but the memories of what she’s done have her shutting that side of her down. Sometimes it’s just easier not to feel anything than it is to deal with your own poor decisions.
4. Of our supporting characters/guest stars this week, who really stood out for you?
Carol: Asteroth the demon. He was a sort of comedic relief in a tense situation. His introduction, his care of Penny, and – let’s not forget – “Oh it’s juicy.” I laughed way too hard at this line.
Ali: Alice’s mom for her humor and heartbreak. I felt for her in the end. The look on her face was one of heartbreak. That got to me.
Diane: The whole supporting cast is amazing! Daniella Alonso just killed it as the sexy Pirate King, but my favorite this week has to be Julian Richings as the demon Asteroth! I loved him as Death on Supernatural and seeing him here was so much fun!
Katherine: Best supporting player goes to the demon Julian Richings. I love his work, and I loved his take on the cancer eating demon. The VFX of his face and hands were awesome.
Lauralea: Tick. I loved Tick. The fact that he had the sheer balls to pickpocket the Fairy Queen… I bow down to him. Such a fun little character.
5. We admit, we’re confused by the Fairy Queen. One second, she’s benevolent, the next, terrifying. Any guesses as to her end game?
Carol: Still not sure about the Fairy Queen’s end game yet. I’m leaning towards an alliance with Eliot and Margo to rule Fillory together instead of being at constant odds. This quest may be a test to see if the humans are worthy of co-ruling Fillory with or without magic.
Ali: I have no clue what her end game is. She is cunning and thus far has not tipped her hand. I’m curious to see how things unfold with her.
Diane: I think the Fairy Queen is trying to force Margo to behave the way a Fairy ruler would. I also think she intends to work on Margo while Fray works on Eliot, but to what end, I have no idea. Who the hell knows what those fairies want!
Katherine: The Fairy Queen loves messing with Margo, it’s her favorite past time besides tubbing. She does appreciate when humans show sympathy to creatures they don’t understand, like The Muntjac. As for the final end game, it’s still unfolding.
Lauralea: Not a clue. I found myself enjoying the character much more this week, however. I was a little astonished by her conversation with Margo about finding the true Queen inside her, it really made me take a double look at the Fairy Queen as a whole. It almost seems like she’s grooming Margo for something – all these little trials and rewards that she’s dealing out to Margo have to come to some kind of fruition. It’s beginning to feel like a mentor/student relationship. The killing of the pirates really felt like the FQ saying, Hey! She’s mine to fuck with, step off!
6. Who gets your vote for the most powerful performance this week? Why?
Carol: It’s a tie for me. Fen for showing her old fierce self which I have missed dearly. Margo acted as a queen should. Protecting her subjects from harm. Her concern for Muntjac was powerful. Her also won her points with the Fairy Queen. The map maker…”I am High King Eliot!” Priceless.
Ali: Margo for her humor and her expression of compassion and concern for the Muntjac. It was nice seeing that compassionate, caring side of her, especially towards a completely different kind of sentient entity.
Diane: Margo wins this episode for me, hands down. Her whole conversation with the Fairy Queen was just so visceral. It stuck with me long after the scene ended.
Katherine: Sometimes I think the best performances can be the quietest, like Jason Ralph as Quentin, still trying to stay connected to Alice, or Stella Maeve as Julia getting weird messages but keeping her stuff together for her friend.
Lauralea: Margo. Hands down, Margo. Her gentleness with the ship, her determination to save Elliot, her passion when facing the pirates… Margo simply ruled this episode.
7. Let’s take a vote. Is Penny a ghost, in traveller limbo, or something else?
Carol: I’m not sure what Penny is. He still possesses magical powers, which insinuates he is a magical creature and a bit human as well. Maybe he just transformed into his true being. Or maybe he’s a ghost traveller.
Ali: I’m going to vote limbo simply because I hope they aren’t going to be done with a character like Penny being part of the group anytime soon.
Diane: My vote is that Penny is in traveller limbo. He can’t be dead, can he? I mean, you’d think he’d have felt himself DIE even while astral projecting, right??
Katherine: Penny is now Library Dead and exposed to forms of magic. I believe his second life is beginning.
Lauralea: This is a hard question. It didn’t surprise me to see his astral form at the end, but what he actually is, I’m not really sure. I would say he’s something less than alive and something more than a ghost – almost like the shades… the body is dead but the soul lives on, just a little more literally than we’re used to seeing.
Final Verdict: We’ll need to go to our happy place after the pain in The Magicians 3X03 “The Losses of Magic”
We knew that after two phenomenal seasons, The Magicians would pull out all the stops for season three. We just had no idea they would go all George R. R. Martin on us so early on! With the fates of both Daniel and Penny on the line, we just might die ourselves waiting to find out how things will end up. Alice has us worried, Eliot’s gone missing, and Margo…well, we worship the ground she walks on.
Honestly, the scenes between Stephanie and Alice were just so hard to watch. There were times that we wanted to turn away from the television screens at the dysfunction we saw. While this isn’t exactly an issue we have with the episode, it was definitely a tough moment for us.
Where did our royal Waugh family go? Just what does the Fairy Queen want (other than to torture Margo)? How do we bring back Penny? Can we have the old Alice back? Go off and cry into a bucket of ice cream, and we’ll meet you here, same time, same place next week!