The magic is back but are our magicians gone?

The looming question of whether or not magic would return to magicians was finally resolved in the Season 3 finale, but that doesn’t matter when our magicians can’t remember who they are.

The season 3 finale of magicians was filled with outrageous twists. Julia progressed and became a goddess in her own right, Alice literally betrayed everyone, Eliot shot a guy… So, you know, a pretty typical week for this show.

But the biggest twist of all came when we learned that Dean Fogg had made a deal with the library to make sure the magic would come back to Brakebills one way or another. From a certain angle, this seems like a good idea. But that being said, we have already seen suggestions of bureaucratic nonsense on the horizon. Also, how long has this whole arrangement been in place? Has Fogg been working with the library since day one? When did he sober up long enough to even make that decision?

Speaking of the library, what is their problem anyway? Yes, they have always been too selfish for their own good. But can’t they see that it will eventually backfire? Probably sooner rather than later now that they’ve slapped a giant target on the side of their organization. Do they think they can just lend magic to whoever they approve of? What gives them the right to stockpile, ration and delegate like this? Everyone under the sun is going to climb to taste this good good magic juice.

Who are the “magicians” without magic

From this point on, things really go off the rails. Apparently Fogg – or maybe it’s the library – thinks our core group of magicians need to have their memories erased so they can surrender quietly. This way they can’t witness the real crime that happened and the “intrusive children” won’t get in the way.

Margo is now called Janet, and Josh — AKA, Isaac — may or may not be her personal driver. It’s hard to say what her specific job is, but of course she looks as fierce and fashionable as ever. Within seconds, you can imagine him being the CEO of a fashion magazine or something equally badass and chic. Meanwhile, ‘Julia’ is busy rolling out plans for a new arts center in Tribeca, ‘Penny’ is working as a DJ and ‘Kady’ continues to struggle with addiction.

Quentin’s life also resembles his old life. He may refer to himself as Brian, but we see him leaving an old bookstore with a stack of books under his arm. Still as docile and clumsy. It’s clearly Eliot who has undergone the most change… You know, since he was possessed by the castle monster. The monster that’s so fearsome it doesn’t even have a name yet.

A few questions regarding this memory wiping potion. Alice explained that not only does it erase memories, but it also creates a new personality. But how far back does it go? Quentin and Julia have known each other since childhood. Is a person’s entire history erased? When explaining to Dean Fogg why she wanted the potion in the first place, Alice said she didn’t want to be what her parents, Brakebills or Fogg made her. She wanted her own person with a clean slate. Does that mean everyone’s past is completely erased? More questions for next season, it seems.

And after?

We do not know how our magicians will be able to recover their memories, but fortunately there are still people who remember magicians at all. Clearly, Alice hasn’t erased her memories, and she’s already looking for a way to rectify her mistakes. And maybe some of the unresolved questions we had from Season 3 could end up front and center in Season 4. Like, maybe it’s no coincidence that we’ve never heard from Poppy or Marina.

Perhaps their absence paves a way for Quentin and the others to follow. Then there is also Fen. She’s busy running Fillory (Do you think they have magic rations?) but as soon as she hears from the others, she’ll be ready to do whatever she can. If the four team up to revive their friends, that would almost guarantee full restoration for everyone, right? It’s hard to imagine a more resilient women’s team.

Penny is another giant question that looms at the end of the series. The last time we saw him was in episode 3×10 as he submitted to the ‘lifestyle’ library. Joining a book club and basically quitting for his new life. News of the return of magic must be everywhere at this point. Surely he knows that something big has happened and that the library is behind it. The place was buzzing when Dean Fogg visited. It would be impossible for him to miss it. But where exactly is he? Because he has to find a way to free Alice. Which, speaking of which, might be why Hades encouraged him to stay at the library in the first place.

By the end of the episode, it doesn’t feel like all hope is lost. However, it will take a lot of teamwork and cooperation to get together in the end.

Season 4 of ‘The Magicians’ will return to Syfy in 2019

Brian L. Hartfield