Magic takes a nasty turn in ‘The Magicians’ third episode, with Quentin finding out that Julia is a hedge witch and then saving Alice’s life from her own deadly brother.
On the Feb. 1 episode of The Magicians, we finally learn what Alice (Olivia Taylor Dudley) is up to at Brakebills University. Meanwhile, a missing book leads Quentin (Jason Ralph) straight to Julia (Stella Maeve) and her group of troubled underground magicians.
The foreshadowing is heavy in the opening of The Magicians third episode. We watch as Julia slowly starts learning underground magic and even uses it to steal money out of an ATM, but overhead we hear the dean of Brakebills talking about how magic, if used improperly, can consume you and turn you into something terrible. Quentin and Alice are listening attentively at their desks in the classroom, and they watch as the dean, still recovering from being attacked by The Beast, removes his glasses to reveal his scars.
For some reason Brakebills has decided to test their students and see what they can do. Unfortunately the dean can’t see the students to test them, so he’s using Professor March as his eyes. While Alice aces her test, Quentin ends up with an “undetermined” result because, quite frankly, he has no idea what kind of magic he can do.
After the testing Quentin and Alice, who have become very fast friends if you haven’t noticed, head back to the physical kids cottage where they learn getting in isn’t as easy without Eliot and Margo. It’s up to Alice’s light-bending magic to get the door open, but by the time they do everyone inside is more or less trashed. The pair quickly join in on the party… if sitting on a deserted couch and only talking to each other counts as joining in.
Now, this is where things get really interesting… because Alice confesses that she wants to try the spell that brought The Beast into Brakebills again. She’s upset that it didn’t work to contact her brother, Charlie, and thinks if they try again he might come through instead of The Beast. Quentin is not into this idea, but he comes up with a better one: a spirit locator spell that he read about in a book.
The spell leads them to a creepy fountain on campus known as “suicide fountain,” but Alice doesn’t believe that Charlie would have killed himself. She talks of him fondly for a moment before getting frustrated and leaving with Quentin, but as they walk away a hand reaches out from under the water and flips them off. Awkward!
Later we get to catch up with Penny and Kady, but the latter is in a huff because he’s been declared a psychic after his test. As if that wasn’t bad enough he is stopped dead in his tracks because he hears something terrible, and when he looks up it turns out to be Quentin. Those two don’t get along, and when Penny charges at Quentin the nervous bookworm is immediately terrified. But Penny isn’t here the fight, he’s here to call out Quentin for not closing up his mind and singing Taylor Swift in his head. Quentin is mortified and slowly slinks around the tree to hide from Penny, who storms off in his continued huff. Too funny!
Julia’s Real-Life Falls Apart For Magic
We get back to Julia in the city and she’s having some trouble with her boyfriend, James. He thinks she’s cheating on him, but she’s just been distant because of magic and obviously can’t tell him that.
Back at Brakebills it looks like Quentin and Alice have caused another “incident” — this time at the creepy fountain. Professor March calls it a haunting, and in flashbacks we see that two students were talking about the fountain and the fifteen students and a dean who allegedly killed themselves there. Then something reaches out and grabs the students and nearly drowns them. Obviously, Quentin assumes it was Charlie, and Alice seems hesitant to agree until they arrive in her room to find dozens of little glass horses moving. For those of you who don’t remember, Alice told Quentin that her brother taught her how to do that, so they both assume it’s a sign from him.
Thanks to Margo we learn that Charlie may have been involved with a girl who dropped out after his death. Alice is reluctant to work with Margo but she doesn’t have much of a choice, especially if she’s going to lead her in the right direction — which she does. When they find Emily she tells them that Charlie died trying to save her life after she used magic to make herself “prettier” and failed terribly. Unfortunately the magic Charlie used was too much and it consumed him, leaving him “lost.” To be honest, it’s unclear if he actually died or… if he’s still out there, somewhere.
While that’s going on, Eliot takes Quentin on a wild goose chase — or should I say book chase? A book went missing from the physical kids cottage and their search leads them right to Julia and her underground magic bodega in the city. Once they find the book both Quentin and Eliot try to leave, but Julia chases after them. She comes face-to-face with Quentin on the street and he tells her she needs to grow up, that she’s not doing real magic she’s just doing party tricks, which is a massively sick burn.
For whatever reason, this leads Julia to telling her boyfriend, James, about what she’s been involved in. However, instead of being honest, she tells him that she has an adderall addiction and that’s why she’s been so distant and moody. He falls for it because she uses magic to convince him, but when she gets a mysterious text message in the middle of the night she leaves James behind in bed.
Meanwhile, Penny is forced to embrace his psychic abilities and in the process somehow ends up transporting to another country. Eventually the dean and Professor Sunderland find him and tell him that he’s actually a traveler, not a psychic, and that if he’s trained properly he can travel between worlds. How crazy is that?
Alice Puts Herself & Quentin In Grave Danger
Once back at Brakebills Quentin finds out that Alice is planning to bring Charlie back. Or, she’s going to try. He more or less tells her that she’s nuts, but she’s stubborn and instead of arguing with him tells him that she’ll do it on her own if she has to. It’s obvious Quentin has a weak spot for Alice so he follows along, despite his concerns.
Somehow Alice manages to summon Charlie, but he’s not who he used to be. He repeatedly uses magic to hurt her and scare her, and he even tries to kill Quentin in the process, but that doesn’t stop Alice from trying. When Quentin realizes that Charlie is letting Alice kill herself to try and save him, he uses an enchanted box to trap her brother for good. Instead of being grateful that he saved her life, Alice totally freaks out, packs her bags, and decides to leave Brakebills for good. Uh oh.
Tell us, HollywoodLifers — Do YOU think Alice is really leaving Brakebills? Did Quentin do the right thing? Comment below with your thoughts!