The Magicians Episode 301 Review: The Tales of the Seven Keys

The Magicians is back, and better than ever! Nothing is more fun than watching a few master magicians squirm without their special powers. Honestly, I forgot how much I missed this show. From Quentin’s awkwardness, to everything about Margo and Elliot.

I have never read the books, but I have it on good authority that season three will follow along one of the book’s biggest plotlines: the quest for the seven keys. Sure enough the first episode is aptly titled, “The Tales of the Seven Keys.”

Some shows use season premieres as flashy resolutions to cliffhangers, but not The Magicians. Season three opens as bleak as ever, for the magicians, not us (’cause the best show is back!) and while this episode was purely set up, it builds everything up to where it needs to be.

Quentin and Julia are hanging out like best friends again, and they’re figuring out magic just like in the first episode. Julia got a lot of time to offhandedly mention her sexual assault, and I’m glad for it. As an audience we should not forget that important moment in the series and make sure we hold Syfy and the writers of The Magicians to tell an honest and realistic story about sexual assault. Q had his flashback to Alice, which is sad, but come on, it’s time to find a new focus.

Poor Penny! It was hard to watch as he spent more time in our reality and became sicker by the second. I like that he and Katie are still together, but I hope they use Katie as more than just Penny’s love interest this season. She had agency in the previous seasons, which I love, but as The Magicians enters its junior year I hope it doesn’t lose the things I’ve loved the most about it.

Elliot and Margo are ruling over Filory, with some fairy help, and it’s not going well for Margo. As you recall, Margo lost an eye in order to save Fen from the fairies, but they took Fen’s baby in exchange. As always, I loved every scene set in Filory. The chemistry between all of the actors is unlike any other part of the show.  Let’s not forget the talking sloth!

I had two favorite Filory moments in this episode. The first was the subtitled pop culture conversation between Margo and Elliot. Several of the lines were used in teaser trailers but I had no idea that the context of them would be so funny! I also loved the reveal that Elliot has read neither Harry Potter or Game of Thrones. My second favorite conversation was between the Cock and Elliot, particularly when he asked how long a quest like this one would take and the Cock responded, “Oh, about a season.” Looking at you, fourth wall!

What was up with the magical talking bunnies? I’ll have to rewatch the episode to truly understand the witchcraft with those “White Rabbits.” Do you think they’re late for a very important date?

Not that I’m surprised, but season three of The Magicians is off to a great start. What part of season three are you looking forward to the most? I personally can’t wait to see if there will be a musical episode. And will Quentin and Alice ever resolve this grueling tension between them? I guess we’ll have to wait…oh, a season.

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