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The Magicians

Discussion in 'Movies, Music and TV shows' started by wolf550e, Jan 2, 2016.

  1. wolf550e

    wolf550e High Inquisitor DLP Supporter

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  2. Rehio

    Rehio Heir DLP Supporter

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    Man, I don't generally enjoy watching the shows of books I liked. Can't imagine it'd be any better with a book I didn't like.

    .. I am slightly curious, though.
     
  3. Indrik

    Indrik First Year

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    Personally, I thought it was complete and utter tripe. It rushes through the plot, sacrificing all but the barest semblance of logical progression or character development (and by that I mean you can essentially reduce each character to a two word description and be entirely accurate to their portrayal) in favor of a shallow, failed attempt at literary pretentiousness - the source material is literary fiction, after all, with all that entails - oddly juxtaposed with titillation (gratuitous magical sex scene).

    Beyond that, not even a single character is remotely sympathetic, though I understand that to be the case with the books as well.
     
  4. dhulli

    dhulli The Reborn

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    I've read the first book. Read summaries of the rest. And watched the first episode.

    The show actually portrays the environment of the books quite well, accomplishes it better than I would have thought even given that the books don't lend themselves to TV so easily.

    Plot wise, I won't comment because by the end of the first book I realized how shitty the whole story was.

    I'll keep watching the TV show which started picking up the pace by the end of the episode as long as it keeps me interested.

    tl:dr; So far, not much to judge, okay first episode, we'll see how it goes.
     
  5. Joe

    Joe The Reminiscent Exile Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Yeah the atmosphere and environment of the academy is fairly on point from the book. But they made every character impossibly beautiful and entirely surface.

    Although the you-know-what scene with the Dean in the classroom was awesome. :)
     
  6. Ennead

    Ennead Seventh Year

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    Haven't read the books but I did watch the first episode. The cinematography was pretty bland for a show that supposed to be about magic; it let down an otherwise solid pilot. The only other quibble I have is that all of the characters except for the female friend seemed to be cliches, but that might change later? Who knows.
     
  7. SirJamezBar

    SirJamezBar Squib

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    Huh. I read the first book and enjoyed it even though I hated all of the characters, I didn't know there was a series being made on it, I'll give it a shot but I didn't think the book would translate that well to a TV series.
     
  8. Mutton

    Mutton Unspeakable

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    I haven't watched the show yet, but that sounds like it's a pretty perfect adaptation of The Adventures of Ennui-Man and the World of I Hate Harry Potter and Narnia.
     
  9. jzk

    jzk Squib

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    I saw the trailers for this when it first came out. One part that I always thought was great about the books was how the kids had to learn to contort their hands. I just had such vivid imagery associated with that. I kinda doubt the show will live up to my imagination there, but I'm willing to give it a try, I guess.

    On the books... I really liked the first and the second books. I was a little disappointed by the third. It seemed less rich, and I didn't like the new characters. I have the whole trilogy on my Kindle, and I like have it around for re-reading.
     
  10. Deft

    Deft First Year

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    Honestly, it might just be because I have a friend just like Quentin, but the character seemed a lot more likeable than the book. I agree that a flaw of the books is the cast feeling very simple at times. There is an argument to be made that perhaps people are just straightforward and the author is trying to convey that idea..

    However I think the tv show might do a better job than the books of giving us some not so bland characters. We'll have to see as we're only one episode in.

    I think the trick with book to tv adaption is to accept that complexity will be lost but occasionally tv does some things for stories that books just can't do (visuals, actors unique touch, etc).
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2016
  11. Krogan

    Krogan Alien in a Hat Prestige DLP Supporter

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    So I just watched the second episode and I'm kind of torn, Quentin waffles between likable and completely unlikable for me most of the time. The only time I can firmly root for him is any scene hes in with Penny, I was honestly hoping that when Quentin tossed that spell it would kill him. Penny to me at least is the most arrogant, completely and utterly unlikable character on the show so far. I don't like most of the characters on the show aside from Elliot but Penny is just the worst.

    Also for someone who is supposed to be just an okay magician I thought it was fairly impressive that with zero prior experience in the field Quentin memorized and flawlessly reproduced a battle magic spell that he only saw performed one time while he was terrified.
     
  12. Nuhuh

    Nuhuh Dastardly Shadow Admin Moderator

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    Summary:

    Liking the show a lot better than the first book. I think the changes they made are working well. I don't know how it looks to someone who doesn't have the book background, probably poor acting and pacing, but as episodes are moving along both those things are getting better.

    Details:

    So we have six episodes out by now, things have developed more, mostly I like it. I read the first book and found nearly all (but one) character unsympathetic. The TV series is not as bad as far as that aspect goes, Julia is someone who you can get behind or at the least care about, if for no reason than to see her spiraling downwards. Her side-story also seems to be the only one which has any real impact, danger-wise.

    The actor playing Elliot is doing a very good job, there are differences from the book, but he's very entertaining.

    The 'Janet' character from the books, who usually hung out with Elliot, is apparently a 'Margo' in the show. Until an episode ago I thought she was Janet and I really hated her for being so different from book-Janet and also a really poor actress. Now that I know she is some other character altogether, she's more tolerable.

    The "Dean" is pretty cool, he's totally different from the books, but a good different. He's a little sadistic, messes with his students, doesn't give a shit about their drama - I like him. By the same token, the 'paramedic' woman is fun too, I think she's a good cast.

    Quentin is about as likable as he was in the books, i.e. Not. Frankly, if the tv show did not have Julia's side-story I wouldn't care for it. Also, him dropping Julia and not helping her out was so abrupt and strange, it made no sense in the narrative of the TV show. It does if you read the books, but it was developed differently there.

    Not to spoil but Julia getting back at Q makes her a lot less sympathetic as well. That said, not having sympathetic characters is sort of Lev Grossman's thing.

    The show is also moving on the plot quickly, which is a relief, because the book took ages getting anywhere other than spinning its wheels in the neurosis of its characters.

    As someone who didn't really like the book either, I would say the show is better. You have at least one, possible two, characters you can care for, some decent original characters, and the plot is moving quickly. Think of it is as fanfiction.

    There's a scene where 'The Beast' attacks the Dean, it showcases the contortions well. Majority of the hand gestures aren't very contortiony but I did like them.

    Completely agree with you. That is the only time I root for Q, because Penny is such an ass. But episode 6 had something happen to him that made me cheer. So if you want a bit of schadenfreude, watch that one.
     
  13. TheProphet1.1

    TheProphet1.1 Squib

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    I watched the first episode and immediately afterward downloaded the first book.
     
  14. Rehio

    Rehio Heir DLP Supporter

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    Syfy should send you an apology letter for inadvertently causing you to read it.
     
  15. Puzzled

    Puzzled High Inquisitor

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    I liked each of the books more than the last, Quentin kind of grows out of being an asshole.

    I'm also inordinately fond of them because they were released as I went through college, much the same way as Harry Potter was released through elementary/high school for me. The first book, especially where they're all taking the tests, felt close to home as I went to an Ivy where freshman year everyone was desperate to show they belonged. We all discovered drinking later and stopped caring as much, but that first month felt true to life.
     
  16. Gengar

    Gengar Polymagus Prestige DLP Supporter

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    I don't hate Quentin so much. I've not read the books, but he comes off as 'not quite right' and socially immature, which is fine? I guess?

    Gotta be honest, I'm not a fan of Julia or her arc at all. Mostly because it detracts from Elliot time, partly because she's essentially a crackwhore, and while that was amusing for a bit, almost turning Q into a vegetable was... Ugh.

    'I just wanted to mess with him...'

    Right ...
     
  17. Krogan

    Krogan Alien in a Hat Prestige DLP Supporter

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    I saw it and while I honestly started laughing at the look on his face it was kind of dampened by the inevitable "I really do love you too, I just wanted to protect you" scene that you just know is coming. I'm starting to become a little more fond of Quentin though, I still can't quite say I like him but he's growing on me. Julia however took a plummeting nose dive off of rock bottom. I don't care how much regret you feel after the fact, if you're willing to trap someone you care about in a live action version of their own worst nightmare then you're a fucking lunatic. They keep trying to give her these humanizing moments and they all just fall flat for me.
     
  18. TheProphet1.1

    TheProphet1.1 Squib

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    You are certainly entitled to your opinion no matter how wrong or not it is.
     
  19. fire

    fire Auror

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    You are certainly entitled to your opinion no matter how wrong or not it is.
     
  20. Nuhuh

    Nuhuh Dastardly Shadow Admin Moderator

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    Yeah, it's set up for that inevitable turn-around but the magic was supposed to only release them if they spoke the truth. That said, it gives her the out to say, "Well, it wasn't the entire truth..." Anyway, I did laugh at the look on his face. Would be great if they weren't as predictable as we think they will be.

    Yes, Julia has lost all perspective; here's the guy who you supposedly were best friends with and you put him in a nightmare. However, I still enjoy her arc, if for nothing else to see how low she can go.