Welcome back, Fillorians and Brakebills students! This week’s episode of The Magicians catapulted the action to another plane, another…world, if you will. I can’t promise that’s the last corny magical joke I’ll make, but I can promise it’s the final corny magical joke I’ll make for this paragraph. There were deaths, curses, nefarious beasts and much more in “Divine Elimination,” our third episode of the season. Let’s apparate, shall we? As always, spoilers can lurk in the darkest of places, so be cautious.
We open with our gang in Fillory at Castle Whitespire, filling in Eliot regarding all the happenings on Earth. “The spell that won WWII is called the ‘Rhinemann Ultra?’ Sounds like a not-so great beer,” High King Eliot (Hale Appleman) remarks. “It’s a beer, but it’s a beer we can use to kill The Beast,” Quentin (Jason Ralph) replies. “Dean Fogg gave you all matching tramp stamps?” Eliot asks enviously, in regard to the tattoos Fogg gave them in the previous episode to house their Keiko demons. “I feel like I missed out on some crazy party you’ll be talking about for the rest of your lives,” Eliot adds forlornly. Penny (Arjun Gupta) tells Eliot they brought weapons and a plan. What does our High King have, besides terrific one liners?
Meanwhile, Eliot leads them to the throne room for his contribution. “I missed you all. And I was bored,” Eliot admits. He reveals four beautiful, golden thrones for each of them to inhabit. Eliot then extends goblets for all to partake. You know, sit and drink like the royalty they are. “Is this really the most important thing we could be doing right now?” Penny asks incredulously. “The Beast can wait five minutes,” Eliot retorts. He encourages his royal comrades to “revel” in their majesty. “Be regal miscreants,” he teases.
Suddenly, Eliot starts to hallucinate. We see Margo (Summer Bishil) call him a “stupid man.” Quentin and Alice (Olivia Taylor Dudley) gossip in front of him. Something is amiss with our fabulous High King. “Eliot, you okay? You went away there for a minute,” Margo asks in concern. “Totally fine,” Eliot replies, being not fine at all. Alice changes the subject by saying she’s on a time crunch and needs to talk strategy. Quentin replies they’ve already done the latter, but need to catch Eliot up on all that. “You strategized without me?” “Of course we did. Were were on Earth. What did you think we were doing?” Quentin says. In spite of Quentin saying they weren’t trying to exclude him, Eliot becomes progressively more paranoid. He also appears slightly woozy. Our High King also seems to be under the impression they are scheming against him.
While this is happening, Margo walks toward him in an effort to help her friend. “Don’t touch me,” Eliot says. “Sweetie, you kind of sound insane,” she replies. “I promise you I won’t go down easy, usurpers,” Eliot says as a final threat before taking his leave of them. “He got like this on shrooms once,” Margo remarks. She chases after him.
Later, we see Alice, Quentin and Penny doing some strategizing of their own. “I remember what Julia said and it’s starting to make a lot of sense,” Quentin says. Penny, in his perpetual state of irritation, is irritated that Quentin talked to her. The latter goes on to say it makes sense The Beast would want to booby trap his kingdom. “Apparently he left curses behind,” he adds. Alice examines the goblet Eliot drank out of with a mini magnifying glass. “You think Eliot might be cursed?” Penny says. “Did either of you notice that Eliot started acting strange once he took a drink from his goblet?” Alice remarks. She sits on her throne and ponders this. “We probably shouldn’t drink from ours to be safe,” Quentin says.
Then, Penny notices Alice’s demeanor changed once she sat on her throne. “Did something happen to you?” he asks her. Alice counters that she’s “fine.” Quentin also sits on his throne and is reacting much the same as Alice. “Now you’re doing it,” Penny says to him. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Quentin replies. According to Penny, they’re acting like Eliot, “all tweaky and shit.” “We’re fine,” they both say in unison, further solidifying how not fine they are. “I think we can all agree we have a problem here – Eliot,” Quentin says, changing the subject. “He’s High King, he’s cursed and we have no choice,” Alice adds. “We have to kill him,” Quentin proclaims. Penny uses his Nancy Drew skills to figure out the thrones are also cursed. Quentin and Alice leave to kill Eliot. Alice stays back to tell Penny this: “But don’t tell Quentin. I’m going to have to kill him too. Right after Margo.” She skips away.
Later, Penny finds Margo outside. “Margo, we have a serious problem,” he tells her. “I know, Eliot’s cursed,” she replies in exasperation. Penny confides in her that Alice and Quentin are also cursed. He advises Margo not to sit on her throne. Margo tells Penny she has a plan and demands he help her pick plants for an antidote for a poison. “I have to drink it first or I won’t get Eliot to take it. Jesus, you’re acting like this is your first regicide,” Margo huffs. Cursed Margo is just as awesome as Regular Margo. She also tells Penny she sat on her throne and feels fine. “You sat on your…f–k. No, that’s great,” Penny replies. Margo meanders away, reassuring Penny she’ll handle all of it. Uh oh. This won’t end well.
Meanwhile, Julia (Stella Maeve) and Marina (Kacey Rohl) enter an abandoned building, which is the unofficial headquarters for hedge witches, apparently. “So, this is our little fox trap, huh?” Marina teases. “You wanna tell me where you hooked up with your partner, the Dirty Dozen?” Marina asks Julia regarding The Beast. “Fillory,” Julia answers bluntly. “Fine, don’t tell me,” Marina replies. Julia is preparing Reynard’s trap. “I want to help, but that asshole seems like severe psychic damage,” Marina confesses. Julia counters that The Beast knows a spell to freeze a god. Marina argues that he could turn on them, despite Julia’s protest that they signed an agreement. “Those are tough to break, but someone who could freeze a god probably could,” Marina says.
“Are you girls discussing the nature of our agreements?” The Beast (Charles Mesure) inquires, always entering with a flourish. “It’s straightforward. I betray her, she cuts me to the quick,” he adds. Marina asks him what happens after the terms of agreement are met. “I worry you’ll be long gone by then,” he replies, a subtle threat tinging his words. Our Beast then rallies his troops and commences singing “A Hunting We Will Go.” Always so musically inclined, that one.
Later, Eliot finds someone who works in the castle and beseeches them for help. “Benedict, right?” he asks said castle worker. “I need your help,” he adds. Our High King asks him what he does. “I’m a royal mapmaker, your Majesty,” Benedict (Harvey Guillen) replies. Eliot says he needs a dagger or a stiletto – something he can use to sneak up on someone and stab them with. “I make maps, your Majesty,” Benedict repeats.
Meanwhile, Fen (Brittany Curran) and Penny are observing this interaction from afar. “The other Kings and Queens who died, I thought it was just in fighting, greed or power,” Fen says. Penny asks her how they will reverse what The Beast did. She replies that curses usually end once they run their course and not before. “This one seems to want to run its course till they’re dead,” Penny remarks. He is struck with an idea, and instructs Fen to make sure the others don’t kill each other.
Later, we see Marina doing an incantation that is supposed to attract Reynard. Her heart’s not in it, though. “Hey, do me a favor and believe it,” Julia whispers in her ear. “Oh Benevolent Mommy who will solve all my problems with her Gaia power?” Marina replies snootily. “Yeah, or Reynard won’t show,” Julia says. She encourages Marina to act it out. The latter does the spell again, but this time with fervor. We see the wind picks up – something is clearly happening. Suddenly, The Beast whisks Julia away to a park nearby. “Is this a joke? Take us back now,” Julia demands. “We can’t go back. Reynard sensed you before,” The Beast replies. He adds that if the god senses her presence he won’t appear. She’ll have to make sacrifices (i.e. Marina). “By the time we arrive, he’ll be so engrossed in Marina’s evisceration he won’t even know we’re there!” The Beast says encouragingly.
Meanwhile, we see Marina in the throes of the spell. However, in spite of this the wind dies down and…nothing. She notices her comrades are missing. “F–k this noise,” she states in true Marina fashion. With the wave of her hand she extinguishes the candles and leaves in a huff.
Later, Margo is roaming about the castle when she spots Quentin with a crossbow perched at the ready. She bursts into laughter. “What’s so funny?” he asks. “You with a crossbow. You couldn’t destroy a fat girl with a fat girl sinking arrow,” Margo quips. Ever the blunt one, that Margo. “No way I’ll miss you from this range,” Quentin says as he edges closer to her. He looses the arrow, but it lands in the wall adjacent from her. “You enchanted yourself, didn’t you?” he asks. Then, Margo releases her Keiko demon in a billow of smoke. Penny arrives just in time to release his own demon. Said demons clash, sending all three backward. When the smoke clears, Margo retorts, “You just had to let him save you, huh? You’re such a girl.” Penny wrenches the crossbow from Quentin and shoots an arrow into Margo’s bum.
Meanwhile, Julia and The Beast return to find Marina gone. In an attempt to encourage, The Beast remarks that the area is free of Marina debris. Meaning, Reynard didn’t kill her…there. “She ran. I don’t think she finished the spell,” Julia says. She adds that they will have to start all over again. Our musical Beast says maybe Reynard followed Marina home to kill her. “You knew this was going to happen,” Julia accuses him. He tells her they just need to locate Reynard before he’s finished with his prey.
Later, we see Marina is home. She does a spell to lock the doors and protect herself. “You just locked us both inside, you know. You must be Marina,” Reynard (Mackenzie Astin) says menacingly.
While this is happening, The Beast and Julia arrive outside of Marina’s apartment. “Shit. Wards are up. We can’t get inside,” Julia says. However, they are no match for her partner. He begins whittling away at them. “Settle in, this may take a bit,” he tells her.
Later, Penny and Fen are armed with crossbows pointed at our cursees, who are situated around them. “Bad news, you’re cursed. Good news, I think there’s a way out,” Penny tells them. “Does it involve beheading?” Eliot asks. Penny plans to let the curse run its course by killing all of them. He picks up a syringe. “Oh good. Heroin. I always suspected that’s how I’d go,” Eliot remarks. “Potassium chloride will shut down the heart. Adrenaline will kick start it,” Penny explains. “You die. Curse ends. We revive you,” he adds. “Except what if any part of that plan doesn’t work?” Quentin asks. Suddenly, Penny loses control of the crossbow, which falls from his hands and sends an arrow spinning near Quentin’s head. “I’m fine, my fingers are numb due to anti-curse things,” Penny says.
“Point that thing at their f–king heads,” Penny instructs Fen. He tells them to stand quietly in their corners. Deciding to do the opposite, Margo tabs Quentin in the neck with the potassium chloride. “Whatever. You’re dead,” Margo says triumphantly as Quentin falls to the floor, foaming at the mouth. Alice, Eliot and Margo run at each other, fighting over the remaining syringes. “I suppose this is one way to get the killing bit over with,” Fen comments.
Meanwhile, Reynard has his fun with Marina. “The wards around this place are deceptively advanced. I’m impressed with your talent,” he says, complimenting Marina. “I bet you say that to all the girls right before you rape them, kill them and eat their hearts,” she taunts. Reynard knows that Marina’s cynicism is a ploy to mask her fear. “I love the foreplay, it’s hot, it really is, but just get it over with and kill me,” she tells him. Marina rises from her chair, but is forced to sit down. Her hands are bound by a spell. They have their witty back and forth for a bit – Marina hoping to prove how fearless she is, Reynard trying to instill the fear of him in her.
Later, Reynard spots Marina’s cat. “You’re not totally alone,” he comments. “You witches and your familiars,” he adds. “You don’t care about people, but you care about her,” Reynard continues. Marina assures him she’s a “stupid cat.” Reynard immediately turns the poor animal inside out, and promptly deposits her remains on Marina’s lap. She is horrified. We hear muffled mewing. “Oh, that’s funny, I think she might still be alive,” Reynard says, chuckling. We see Marina attempting to do a spell with her hands behind her back. Reynard yanks on her wrist. “No magic,” he warns, biting her finger off. BITING HER FINGER OFF.
Meanwhile, back in Fillory, everyone is dead except Margo. “I won, bitches, I’m the High Motherf–king Queen,” Margo proclaims like the queen she is. Penny demands Fen grab the adrenaline needles. “Come at me, farm girl,” Margo yells at Fen. In a weird twist, Margo stabs herself. “Is it wrong to say I find her death extremely satisfying?” Fen asks. Later, we see the gang alive and alert save Quentin. Eliot stabs him square in the chest. He is revived. “What the hell?” Quentin asks, bewildered.
We see Alice’s poor wrist, badly burned from her bracelet. “It’s time. I don’t know how long I’ll have to cast the Rhinemann,” Alice informs the gang. Penny is to apparate and grab The Beast, depositing him back in Fillory. Eliot mentions they are down two Keiko demons (Penny and Margo’s). “Actually, we only have one. I let mine go. I could feel it!,” Alice confesses. Quentin still has his. He mentions the rest of them throwing up a Samarian Shield Charm while Alice casts the spell, to distract The Beast. While they argue about it initially, our magical friends agree this is the best course of action.
Later, back at Marina’s apartment, Reynard continues his act of torture. “Struck a nerve, didn’t I?” Reynard asks her. He proceeds to remove her shoe and feigns at eating her toe. She braces herself for the pain. Suddenly, Julia and The Beast make their entrance. The Beast freezes Reynard promptly. “Apologies for the tardiness. Your wards are rather extensive,” he says. Marina hastily gets up and spits on the frozen Reynard.
Meanwhile, the gang in Fillory prepares to summon The Beast for a showdown. Alice starts the spell. GAME ON!
“He’s fighting the net. “I’m not sure how much longer I can hold this,” The Beast says as he attempts to keep Reynard frozen. “Jesus, Julia, will you just gut this guy?” Marina asks impatiently. “With pleasure,” Julia replies…with pleasure. I went there again, y’all. She procures the god-killing dagger and readies herself for god murder…that is, until Penny arrives. “No!” Julia yells as Penny grabs The Beast. All three of them apparate to Fillory, leaving Marina alone with Reynard. Our God of Tricks unfreezes and makes a mad dash for the dagger, as does Marina.
Meanwhile, Alice is getting the juices flowing. The others are casting the Samarian Shield Charm in defense. Suddenly Penny, The Beast and Julia crash land in the center of their Beast-killing circle. “Now!” Eliot shouts. They officially work up the shield to distract The Beast while Alice works her magic. Ha ha. Get it? Magic. Unfortunately, Quentin spots Julia being exactly where he warned her not to be. “Hole up that bitch, let’s go!” Margo shouts, still very much holding a grudge against Julia. Quentin ignores this and grabs his best friend, throwing her out of the way. Alice blasts The Beast with her spell, sending him flying. He rises, albeit unsteadily and bloody. Before Alice can shoot him again he disappears. “I missed him!” she shouts.
“I had Reynard, he was right in front of me!”Julia yells, incensed. “Yeah, and then you screwed up our plan, again!” Margo retorts. In order to prevent more needless bickering, Penny saves the day (again) by whisking Julia back to where she came from. He drops her off in a park. “Subway’s that way. Good luck with your bullshit,” he tells her brusquely. Julia begs Penny to take her back to Fillory so they can find The Beast. She still needs him to kill Reynard, and the latter has the knife now. “Not my problem,” Penny replies, in a Penny-like fashion. Julia, in retaliation, rips the chains off Penny’s wrists, the only things preventing his hands from going haywire. He immediately begins breaking park benches and throwing about various bits of debris. He demands Julia put the chains back on. “Sorry. Not my problem,” she sneers, walking away.
Later, back in Fillory, the gang sets out to find The Beast. “He’s injured. Where else would he be. He has to be at the Wellspring,” Alice says, thoroughly convinced. They plan to take a carriage there. Quentin thinks they should send Eliot and Margo to Ember for help, “to petition for a re-up.” So, they do just that, leaving Quentin and Alice to search for The Beast.
“Hey, thought exercise, say we kill The Beast uh…what then?” Quentin awkwardly asks in his awkward Quentin way. “I’d eat an ice cream sundae,” Alice replies, clearly having raided my freezer. “I’m probably gonna try and win you back,” he blurts out. Whoa, dude. “Jesus, Quentin, I’m not a prize,” Alice replies. Quentin says he feels like he needs to earn back her trust. Alice launches into a monologue about how he can’t trap her with this “emotional shit” when all she can think about is an ice cream sundae. Girl, that’s virtually all I think about. “I feel like we could die in an hour and it’s given me a lot of clarity,” Quentin confesses. He promises to make her the best ice cream sundae she’s ever had. So they seal it with a big ol’ pre-battle smooch. “Do you still want to fight?” he asks her after the kiss.
Later, Margo and Eliot are calling for Ember at his meeting place. “Give me your hand,” she demands Eliot. When he reluctantly relents she cuts his hand and puts it in a mold in a rock – a kind of blood summoning. Nothing happens. “He’s a god in exile. Where else would he be?” Eliot asks.
Meanwhile, The Beast stumbles upon the Wellspring, much to his delight (and exhaustion). Ember (Dominic Burgess) makes his grand entrance. “Greetings, O Powerful and Glorious Martin Chatwin!” Ember bellows mightily. “You know what happens if you stay in Fillory,” The Beast warns. Ember insists he’s leaving, but not without imparting The Beast with a gift. A gift of poo. He befouled the Wellspring. And with that, he disappears. “You wretched bastard!” The Beast shouts, at no one.
During their conversation, we see Quentin and Alice hiding, observing the scene. “Ember actually took a shit in the Wellspring? Well, that can’t be good for Fillory,” Quentin remarks. “Quentin Coldwater!” The Beast bellows. “Why don’t you and Alice come join me?” he asks, snapping his fingers. They appear before him. “You’re weaker,” The Beast tells Alice. “And you’re down six fingers,” she retorts. “More than enough to kill you both,” The Beast replies, throwing a doozy of a spell at them. Quentin jumps in front of Alice to save her, bearing the brunt of the spell. He falls with a nasty gash on his shoulder. Alice, in retaliation, throws a spell at The Beast to prevent him from finishing off Quentin. She commences throwing light bolts at him. Go Alice!
Meanwhile, Margo and Eliot have admitted defeat. “I guess we’re gonna die,” Margo says forlornly. “To our pretty corpses,” Eliot toasts. Ember apparates before them, thankfully. “Children of Earth, I have returned!” he announces with gusto. Ember acknowledges them as royalty (as everyone should). Eliot says they’ve come to ask for help. Ember zaps them to the scene of the showdown between Alice and The Beast.
“Is that all you’ve got?” Alice taunts. “You’re just a scared little boy. You wouldn’t even last an hour at Brakebills,” she adds menacingly. The Beast throws a fireball but misses Alice entirely. She knocks him back against the rocks behind him. “Alice is going full Harry Potter 7/8 over there,” Eliot remarks, winning my heart with nerdy references.
Our girl Alice casts her bracelet aside, revealing her burned to a crisp wrist (hey, I rhymed). “Alice, what are you doing? No, Alice, don’t!” Quentin yells. Alice powers up Super Saiyan style but unfortunately catches fire and INCINERATES. Incinerates! She disappears in the exact manner her brother did. The Beast laughs, thinking himself triumphant. He saunters toward Quentin. “Too far, too bad,” he taunts. “Let’s finally finish this,” he says. But then…
Alice grabs him! She re-materializes! “I did it on purpose,” she says, voice devoid of emotion. We see her skin is glowing a fiery blue in certain places, as her brother’s did. She suddenly reappears in front of him. “Alice, we could make a deal. Think of the fun we could have together,” The Beast tells her, attempting to strike a deal. “But I want to,” Alice replies in her desire to kill him. She rips him open through the chest, which releases a horde of moths. He dies. A singular blue moth flies free from his mouth. “Disappointing,” Alice says. “Your turn,” she adds, turning to Quentin. She’s gonna kill him too! While Alice stalks toward the injured Quentin, Margo screams her name. She turns her attention to Eliot and Margo now.
“Quentin says ‘go free,'” Quentin whispers, releasing his Keiko demon in an attempt to save his friends. We see the demon exploding in a clash with Alice – a blindingly white light flashes everywhere. We don’t see the outcome…yet.
Later, Julia discovers a deceased Marina in her apartment (RIP “Sass Factory” – my name for her). Reynard and the dagger are gone. Julia is now back to square one in her quest to destroy the trickster god.
Back in Fillory, we see the results of the demon/Alice fight. Poor Alice is clearly dead, lying on the ground. Quentin slowly crawls to her, desperately calling her name. Eliot grabs him and holds him. Quentin begins to sob.
Oh. My. God. THIS EPISODE! So much happened that I’m not sure I can compute. Alice dies three times, y’all. Marina, my Sass Factory, also perishes. The Beast is dead! We’re only three episodes in this season and the pedal is clearly to the metal. The fan is riddled with poo at this point. However, this is a fantasy show. Death is sometimes (frequently) a temporary state. Will the gang revive Alice? Will The Beast stay dead? Can Julia find Reynard on her own? Maybe Quentin can make me that ice cream sundae instead? Join me next week as we delve back into the world of Fillory!
The Magicians airs Wednesdays at 9pm on your Syfy affiliate.
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