The Magicians S01 E11: Battle Magic
On last week’s episode of “The Magicians” Penny was saved from the Neitherlands with foxy love; Margo found a golem; Julia and Kady joined forces; Richard wants to summon a god, but no one is worried about Eliot. This week, our gang prepares for battle with the Beast.
Penny has returned from the Neitherland Library with information given to him from the very strange librarian. The notes are from Martin Chatwin and they hold a clue; find the Leo Blade. There is just one itty bitty problem. This blade that can kill even a god is in Fillory. While Quentin and the others are willing to travel to Fillory to retrieve this blade and kill the Beast, Penny wants no part of this plan.
While the group squabbles, no one is paying mind that Eliot’s dependence on alcohol and drugs has gotten worse. This lust for magic leaves the group blind, not only to Eliot’s addictions, but also to Penny’s inability to keep the Beast out of his head. Team Quentin does a series of “Probability Spells’ to see if they can kill the beast, but the results are all the same. The spells show all the students ending up deader than a doorknob at the hands of the Beast.
In real life, the “Probability Spells” would be called good ole common sense and planning, but at Brakebills School of Magic, common sense seems to be on a spring break. Battle magic is illegal so Team Quentin goes looking for help. Ignoring that Penny is in serious trouble, they ask him to use his magic to find Kady.
The Beast is attacking all the travelers. Joe, the sex therapist that is part of Alice’s parent’s threesome, is dead. He killed himself. Penny is forced to hear the screams of the girl in the dungeon as the Beast tortures her. Penny goes to Stanley, but Stanley is also being attacked by the Beast and the man’s solution to the constant bombardment to his mind is to commit suicide; gun to mouth. Penny is alone with the sound of that poor girl’s screams and the taunts of the Beast. In utter despair, he overdoses.
Did you know that sound can be used to interrogate a prisoner in hopes of gathering information? Not that long ago, there was a big scandal on how our government was treating the terrorists on Guantanamo prison. They used loud music to torture the terrorists.
Last week, the plot focused on sex, this week it focused on suicide, drugs and alcohol. This episode was very troubling to me especially because we’ve had people in our family die from an overdose and I’m wondering if this is a normal college thing where most problems are solved with the help of dangerous crutches. Penny probably wouldn’t have overdosed if his friends were paying more attention to what he was going through and poor Eliot is not even able to confide in Margo. At least on this episode, Margo did try to find out what was bothering Eliot, but he wasn’t ready to talk.
After team Quentin visits Kady, she shows them a hedge spell that will help will help them do battle magic, but it involves them putting their emotions in a little bottle around their neck. With little time spent on what should have been an important scene, Kady missing Penny and Quentin missing Julia, Team Quentin rushes off to rid themselves of their emotions. While working on the battle magic, Quentin and Alice realize that tampering with emotions opens the door to heartbreak.
Julia and Kady are given the task of finding mythical people who can contact the gods. They would have done better using the yellow pages because the people they approach tell them the gods are dead or not interested in the human race.
I’m really happy that Julia and Kady are working together because their fickle friends at Brakebills have mostly ignored these girls.
At the end of this episode, the credits posted information to a suicide hotline. It was a small token. What this episode revealed about Team Brakebills is that they are superficial in their emotions. Eliot and Penny were both in trouble, and yet, no one on Team Quentin took the alcohols and drugs out of Eliot’s hand. No one sought help for Penny when his mind was under constant mental attack. I guess you could say that Penny was experiencing schizophrenia .
Luckily for Penny, Professor Sunderland came to the rescue. She gave him a device to protect his mind from the Beast and, because Sunderland knew that Penny had witnessed Stanley’s suicide and had tried to take his own life, the good professor gave Penny what he needed most; friendship.
Sometimes, the things we desire the most are right there in front of us, but we ignore them because we’re too busy searching for what we don’t need. Julia’s and Kady’s search for a god was a big flop but that’s because they went about it the wrong way. All that was required was prayer. Julia’s prayer brings forth a goddess who tells her to bring three gifts to a 1,000 year old man on a bridge.
For now, Penny is safe, but that girl is still in the dungeon and, the Beast is still on the loose. Penny has been the only Brakebills character to show real concern for others. He is the only one who cares enough about the girl to save her. Arjun Gupta has done a wonderful job of portraying his character as someone who really understands the meaning of emotions.
Alice, who gave little sympathy to her mother over Joe’s suicide, experienced what happens when we let our emotions go haywire. She opened her heart and her emotions to Quentin. He repaid her by sleeping with Margo and Eliot.
If you have a friend that talks about suicide or has suicidal tendencies, be a good friend and get them help. Suicide Hot Line….