The Magicians TV series: the first trailer and some quick thoughts

Here’s the first trailer for SyFy’s The Magicians TV series, which has been picked up for a full season and will air in 2016! These books are some of my favourites of all time, and in the past I’ve talked about some of the approaches I hope SyFy takes for the show. It’s all just my wishful thinking, mind.

Anyway, the trailer looks very stylish, although I still don’t really like the ageing up of all the characters. I suppose I’ll get used to it quickly if the actors are good in their roles — and I have no reason to suspect they’re not!

Now let me talk about a few of the things I noticed…

First of all, it’s interesting how many scenes they packed into the trailer, considering that they only filmed the pilot so far. For instance, here’s a shot of Quentin standing by a clock tree in Fillory:


And here’s what’s almost certainly the Beast invading the classroom:


The moths or butterflies are very visually striking, and an interesting change from the solitary branch that obscured the Beast’s face in the book.

I very much doubt that all of these scenes will take place in the pilot. I suspect that, alongside the pilot, the studio filmed some quick moments from later episodes just for the benefit of the trailer. But I could be wrong. I really have no idea what liberties SyFy will take in the adaptation.

Next up, some quick thoughts about characters. In the trailer we get plenty of Eliot and Julia, as well as some glimpses of Alice, Margo (AKA Janet) and Penny. But we don’t see Josh! Or do we? Here’s two screenshots that I think might show Josh:


That first one looks like it could take place during a Welters game. In the book, that was where Josh first demonstrated his true powers, which involved a sphere of energy floating in the air just like this. Could that be Josh on the right, creating the sphere? Or it could be him on the left, staring at the sphere while someone else tries to dispel it? Either way I’m really disappointed that they didn’t cast a big, chunky guy to play him!

But I might be wrong, so here’s a second shot which might include him:


Is that Josh in the back right? He seems like a slightly bigger guy, but he looks a little emo with that eye makeup. My loveable, goofy image of Josh doesn’t really fit anyone in the trailer. Perhaps he just hasn’t been cast or filmed yet. God forbid they cut him out completely. Josh is the heart and soul of the books!

Finally, I’m wondering if this is Dean Fogg:

mag_foggThis seems to be the scene where Quentin accepts tuition. This character was also central in the magic-testing scene earlier in the trailer. I’m 90% sure it’s Dean Fogg, and the casting seems okay but I’m just disappointed SyFy didn’t go with my personal choice! (:P)

NB: I haven’t really kept up with the casting news beyond the Physical Kids, so this being Dean Fogg might be a known thing. Let me know in the comments!

I’m very excited to see how this show turns out. Don’t let us down, SyFy!


  1. (Hi from Reddit!)

    I have watched the trailer a handful of times (and I imagine like you stepped slowly through the scenes to try and tease apart what they are showing.

    First that last scene is definitely Dean Fogg (at least according to IMDB) interesting choice…I always pictured him more stuffy British sort of character…but in the end its not a big deal since (in the books at least) he is a minor character at best.

    IMDB doesn’t list anyone for Josh so he may no be in that first episode? (though they don’t have an entry for Alice yet either and I don’t see how she COULDN’T be in that first episode unless they are doing it all as say flashbacks to his days in school and what not and Alice will be an (at least yet) un-named “lost love” sort of thing….have to see. Though in the trailer the scene with the girl animating the little bee charm on her bracelet does have blond hair so that COULD be her?

    Wow I totally missed that scene with the guys face being obscured by the moths/butterfly’s as being the “beast attack” while they were in school….I do love the visuals too though!

    I love the slightly hipster-ized Eliot with the constant air of just not caring what so ever about anything….will be interesting to see how they develop him.

    1. Hey, thanks for the reply! Yeah I’m pretty sure that blonde girl in the trailer is Alice. I swear I remember hearing that she got cast already.

      Eliot seems pretty good although he’s a little too pretty. I always pictured Eliot a little like Kieran Culkin (who played Wallace in Scott Pilgrim Vs The World).

  2. Too much smoking
    I’ve only watch two episodes, but both had too much unnecessary smoking.
    It’s been establish that teens are influenced by smoking behaviors observed on TV.

    Unless the smoking adds to the story line, there’s no good reason to include it, unless the show is getting kickbacks from the tobacco industry.

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