The Magicians – S04E07 Review + Analysis

The entire concept of storytelling and narration come into play in this episode in a tantalisingly intriguing fashion. We have Penny who, through both time-lapse narration and fourth wall breaks, introduces a new employee of the Library to the stories of his friends. He attempts to get this man to see outside of his POV (Point of View). He comments that this man is trapped in his own POV, a classic case of “White Male Protagonism”. (Which a Librarian, someone who should be completely objective, shouldn’t have.) They focus on the crux of fiction and books as a whole, why writing is so important in the first place; they can allow you to see other points of view.

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Fen starts having prophetic dreams, beginning with seeing one of Fillory’s rabbits who’se throat has been sliced and can no longer speak, this is the precursor guess to the animals of Fillory being struck dumb* (inability to speak) this continues as she foresees many things. Josh informs her that someone could be doing this do her, and encourages her to attempt lucid dreaming. Figure out who’s controlling and creating these dreams. Which she manages to do, finding a greenhooded figure standing out in her dream once she’s pressed pause on it…

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Kady is dealing with one of the most intimidating landlords, the Bhabbayagga*. Which is held inside the body of a regular twenty-something blonde called Bayley. Which sends her on a puzzling journey to track down certain items that make up their rent for living in that apartment, under Bhabbayagga’s unique protection. This ironically leads her to a blackmarket dealer who’s identity is unknown until she finds out it’s none other then Pete, the duo engage in some witty reparte and end up striking a deal. Pete, having heard of the Bhabbayagga by reputation and desperate to meet her, agrees to help Kady find all the things on the list in return for an introduction.

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The Librarian, blonde woman who always holds her hands up in a Julie-Andrews-esque manner, who coincidentally has never been given an actual name outside of that, starts to see her daughter Harriet in mirrors. Convinced that she is trapped in some kind of in-between mirror realm, manages to get a colleague on board to go investigate and find her.

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Kady, figuring out that what caused Pete to nearly die, and what caused the death of the man they found curled up on the floor, was a result of interaction from the tracking spell the library has put on all Dewey’s, is causing colossal and terrible reaction with the personal home-brewed spells that most hedge-witches have on them at all times, leading, with prolonged interaction, to death. Kady, surprisingly ends up being the leader of the troops, galvanizing the notoriously unsocial hedge witches to band together with her. Kady’s leading an uprising, this coming from a character who we had somewhat written off as dropping off the scene after the whole Marina apartment situation.

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Zelda, is informed of the attack on a Library branch in Modesto, Texas (sounding familiar?) Hedge-witches were responsible. It was in response to some fallout from the tracking spell she’d recommended. Through all of this, this higher up man voices his desire to continue the tracking idea, keeping an eye on the hedge witches

Librarian: “Are you suggesting we kill hedge witches?”

Rob: “I am suggesting we keep an eye on them. To protect the flame of knowledge from being extinguished. No matter the cost.”

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The last few words are the mantra of the Library. Turning very overtly into an authoritarian fascist regime. We have already seen Zelda making small, subtle stances against the Library as a whole, earlier in the episode she goes to check up on Alice’s story in her book, claiming that she’s denounced all magic, gets a job in a restaurant and lives a magicless existence for the rest of her days. She finds out that this is false and realizes Alice put an enchantment on her book. She tells no one the truth and outright lies to her colleague. Her disdain when she hears that there was a backlash with her tracking idea, exclaiming that the whole point of the tracking, “the whole point of doing this was to avoid having to hurt anyone.” She seems to be a pacifist when it comes to her work and her life, the idea of nonchalantly condemning countless more hedge witches to their deaths does not sit easy. So its not too shocking when we see her surprising Alice, and asking for her help.

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Penny: “Zelda doesn’t know it yet but what she just set in motion is going to change the Library forever. Same with Fen and Fillory. Kady and all of Magic. When you file people away as sidekicks you don’t realize their importance to the story. Where to shelve a book not a little thing. You’re telling the world what to value, who to value.”

This is when the table turns, we find out that Penny’s protégé or intern is actually ‘Supervisor’s supervisor’. Who promotes him to ….. ‘The next level’. An intriguing title, ‘Secrets Taken to the Grave’. It’ll be Penny’s job to collect them.

GIF by Mia for The Game of Nerds Via The Magicians on SYFY

 

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