The Magicians

Season 1, Episode 08

Episode Title: The Strangled Heart

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Omar

Episode eighth, the Strangled Heart, starts with Eliot and Mike having a BBQ when Quentin and Alice arrive from Brakebills South. As soon they arrive Eliot realize that Quentin and Alice had sex. Alice wants for them to spend some time apart and find out what they actually feel for each other.

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With his anger from the events in Brakebills South, Penny practices Traveling on his own and ends up in Professor’s Sunderland class drenched in water. She tells him that he needs to follow the syllabus, but instead he replies that he needs to learn to travel faster. He insinuates that she should help him and he could teach her a thing or two.

The second semester has started and the first-years are divided in study groups to better learn the new materials. Quentin buys his way into Alice’s study group, and end up with Penny also. In his office, Dean Fogg’s hands are released from the gloves that were healing him. While he can make movements, he is unable to do magic when he first tries. He vows that he would teach himself again, as he did when he was a boy.

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While sleeping in Mike’s apartment, the blue moth appears next to Mike and awakens. He leaves his apartment and in the hallway there is a white rabbit that hops to his feet. Mike picks it up and stares at it. He then breaks its neck and takes its head off, and pulls a blade from inside the rabbit’s body.

Julia tries to write a letter to Quentin, but doesn’t seem to know what to say when Marina goes to visit her to the clinic she is in. Marina wants a truce where if Julia leaves the warehouse alone, Marina won’t go after her and kill all of her loved ones. During an AA meeting, Julia meets the chaplain, Richard, who tells them to lean on God to help them get over their addiction.

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Eliot asks Quentin what he should wear for his date with Mike, but Quentin isn’t helpful. Mike tells Eliot that he is waiting to for him to get over him, as he thinks that Eliot is from a rich family. Eliot tells Mike that he grew up in a farm and that he really likes him.

While trying to learn a spell, Penny makes remarks about Alice and Quentin sex during Brakebills South. Alice leaves to study alone, leaving Penny and Quentin to figure out the spell. Mike appears and tries to stab Quentin, only to be stopped by Penny. Mike is able to cut Penny, as Quentin uses battle magic to attack him. Mike flees after being hit and Quentin takes Penny to the infirmary.

They are able to heal the wound, but are unable to know what more it could happen to Penny, as they need the weapon to examine it. Alice tells Quentin and Eliot that professors found Mike trying to open a portal to escape and took him into custody. Eliot tries to talk with Mike, but Mike only tells him that he doesn’t remember him and that the last thing he remembers is being in his apartment. The wound in Penny starts to infect and cause him pain.

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In the clinic, Richard asks Julia from what safe house she come from, as he saw her stars in her arm. Julia asks him if he is a Hedge witch, to which he replies that he study in Brakebills. He tells her that magic is not bad, that it’s a gift and depends on who uses it; he believes that magic are tools left from ancient gods to bend realty. Before leaving, he gives her a spell for her to do.

Alice visits Penny, and he asks her to get his pills to stop hearing people asking for his help. Alice notice that his wound starts to bleed, and sees that vines come out of the wound. Alice calls for help and for Quentin. Quentin recognized the vines are from the fourth Fillory book, as Jane Chatwin suffered the same wound from a Vergo Blade. Quentin tries to use a doll that looks like Penny to heal him, as that was how Jane was safe, but it doesn’t work with Penny.

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Dean Fogg asks Eliza to stop by Brakebills where he tells him about what happen to Penny and the Vergo Blade. He tells her to clean everything up, save Penny, and leave the school forever. Most of all, she fears for Quentin and Penny safety. While she walks out, Quentin finds her and asks her if Fillory is real, to what she replies that of course it is, and he should already know that. She tells him that Beast true goal is to rule over Fillory and all the doors that lead to it, and how to heal Penny. Jane’s doll wasn’t special because it looked like her, but because it was something special of her, as her mother gave it to her before dying.

Julia does the spell in her room, but at first nothing seems to happen. When she gets up to leave, she levitates as the light enters the room. She asks Richard what kind of spells was because it felt like somebody was casting a spell on her instead. He tells her it a prayer to a local harvest god. He tells her that there are different ways to live with magic and he can teach her. She asks him if he can deliver something to Brakebills.

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Quentin and Alice search Penny’s room for something special about him. She tells her that her special object is a blanket that her grandmother gave her, and Quentin replies that book one first edition of Fillory that he bought with his own money is his special object. They find the chocolate paper rap from Brakebills South and use that. Quentin tells Alice that it must be because it’s related to Kady. They watch as it burns and the vines disappear from Penny’s wound.

Eliza goes to speak with Mike and tells him that she can see through his wards and know that he is the Beast. He replies that he was sure she would see as nothing escapes the determine Jane Chatwin. Jane tells him that his plan won’t work a second time and that Penny will live. The Beast replies that that wasn’t his actual plan and tackles her. Jane tries to escape, but he drags her and starts to choke her. He breaks her neck and applies more pressure until something explodes. The Beast tries to escape only to be stopped by Dean Fogg with a magic spell, but breaks free and goes to kill the Dean. Eliot gets there in time to stop him by using a spell to break Mike’s neck that kills him. A heartbroken Eliot starts to cry.

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The episode ends with Quentin and Alice getting back together after Quentin confronts Dean Fogg about what they are going to do now that Eliza is dead.


I liked The Strangled Heart, it was a roller coaster of emotions. It was interesting how the writers used Mike to get the Beast inside Brakebills again and to learn more about the Chatwin’s adventures in Fillory. I was hoping to see Kady sneak in to see Penny, but it didn’t happen. I don’t think the Beast actually killed Jane, we still need to see her later on, and I’m not sure what exploded to produce all that blood. Did her head explode? There were a lot of broken necks in this episode and a lot of broken hearts. I really like the scene where Eliot killed Mike, it was very sad, but still a great scene. It was great to see the professors from time to time and battle magic from the all the characters. I don’t remember who Richard is, as there a different Richard in the book and he doesn’t meet Julia, but the idea of gods and magic is clearly a sign that they are showing and going back to her side of the story. Maybe with Richard, Julia can get free of Marina once and for all. I also liked Julia’s a scene when she levitated, it reminding the viewers that she was the one on the promo posters. Did you like The Strangled Heart? What more do you expect in the Magicians? Tells us I the comments.