Wednesday, March 4, 2020

REVIEW: 'The Magicians' - Eliot and Julia Learn More About Seb's Identity as Penny Travels Through Time in 'Cello Squirrel Daffodil'

Syfy's The Magicians - Episode 5.09 "Cello Squirrel Daffodil"

Penny only wears vintage. Alice rejects a sandwich. Julia does a thing.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Syfy's The Magicians.

"Cello Squirrel Daffodil" was written by Stephanie Coggins and directed by Tawnia McKiernan

The drama has returned to the Chatwin family as the sources of story in its final season. Those characters comprised the nuance of the dire situation back in the first season. Their actions had a direct impact on the core characters. And now, those consequences are still being felt. In fact, time magic is seemingly more important and relevant than ever before. Again, the loss of all magic is at stake. There are so many threats out there in the world too. The characters may be too divided in order to actually help one another in their times of need. Alice and Kady are off on a completely separate story here. They are being tortured by The Couple because of the page Alice has. She is living in a false reality hoping to find answers only for things to come together a little too easily. That is the lesson these characters have learned across the series so far. Their journeys are ones of great struggle and adversity. They have lost friends along the way. That may propel some of them forward. They have to honor the memories of those no longer alive. But that grief can also paralyze them with fear. The people still living have to find a way to keep that connection alive and thriving even though it vanished a long time ago. Alice refuses to give up this page because it was important to Quentin even though she doesn't know why he had it. Quentin is also the anchor to 2020 that Penny23 needs so that he and Plum can return to their present. Sure, his trips to the past may provide reassurance that Hyman isn't actually dead yet. His body just remains hidden in stasis as a result of Penny23 and Plum messing with the timeline and trying to keep things intact for their futures. Penny23 knows just how delicate and fickle time magic can be. And now, his new student proves herself capable of traveling through time. That may delay their journey to the inevitable destination that appears to be calling out to them and causing them agonizing pain as travelers. That room sends them both into a panic. But again, they have support from each other and the understanding that they can find a better way to resolve any given situation. Similarly, Alice is willing to lose four of her fingers to protect the page. It's only when Kady's life is threatened that she backs down. The Couple still doesn't have it just yet though. That threat will remain ominous moving forward. It even comes with the suggestion that Alice and her friends could simply create a new moon in order to stabilize magic across the planet. That is surely an inventive solution. But the emotional crux of the story ultimately resides in the big revelation that comes with Seb's true identity and how he manages to survive a sword through the chest. That was a decision of great heroism Julia made. It didn't amount to much. In fact, it leaves her confined to Fillory long enough for her to become visibly pregnant. The choice about becoming a mother is essentially taken away from her. Instead, she just has to serve the sole purpose of helping Seb communicate with his dead lover, Lance. He became an immortal being in order to prevent his brother, Martin Chatwin, from gaining that power as the Beast. The magical surges brought him back to the land of the living. He has been working to pick up the pieces of his life. He has gotten close to Eliot. This betrayal makes him seem single-minded. But that also comes through the perspective of him doing whatever it takes to accept love again. He wants that more than anything else. So many people can relate to that. And yet, the actions he embraces are so destructive and heinous that it may ultimately run the risk of turning him into the monster he stopped all those years ago. That is tragic. Some people may never change. Margo knows she can't let Christopher Plover out as a free man. He will hurt people with his charming ways. That is an easy choice for her to make. Not every case is like that though. As such, things are starting to look incredibly dire for all of the main characters as their current lives are at risk of complete destruction in service to some nefarious agendas elsewhere that they don't entirely understand.