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Monday, October 01, 2018

Review: The Magicians Season 1

The Magicians was a fair-to-mediocre novel by Lev Grossman billed as "Harry Potter for Adults".  That actually meant that the TV series had potential, because it's quite possible for the TV series to be better than the book.

Indeed, I appreciate almost all the changes in the TV series, except the selection of Jason Ralph as the actor for Quentin Coldwater. Ralph appears to have no emotional range, and just walks through the entire 13 episode series with a surly look on his face. He never quite sells any of the relationships Quentin has with other characters in the show. The TV series brings in many elements of the second book, The Magician King as well, which is great, because as in the book, Julia's story is far more interesting than Quentin's. She's also a much more interesting character.

The big reveals in the series are well done, and the rest of the setup (Fillory as Narnia, the visit to Antarctica) was a lot of fun. The boring part of the book was also eliminated, which is a wise decision --- alcoholism is too mundane for a TV series about fantasy.

If you've read the books, I think you'll like the TV series better. If you haven't, this is actually a fairly good TV series and worth your time.

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