ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘The Magicians,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Magicians #2 - But Why Tho

The Magicians #2, which is published by BOOM! Studios’ imprint Archaia, is written by Lev Grossman and Lilah Sturges, illustrated by Pius Bak, colored by Gabriel Cassata, and lettered by Mike Fiorentino. The previous issue picks up many years after Quentin and his friends have graduated from Brakebills Academy for the Magical Pedagogy. Dean Fogg welcomes a new group of students to the school who also happen to be hedge magicians. This is quite a historic accomplishment since hedge magicians are known for practicing unsanctioned magic and are often labeled as dangerous. This news is met with mixed reactions as some feel like these new students would disgrace the name of the school. Tempers are at an all-time high from both hedge magicians and Brakebills students as they try to get along in a new class.

The Magicians #2 immediately picks up where the previous issue ended. Sophie’s fire spell was stronger than she had hoped, which resulted in her burning alive. The rest of the group, still completely in shock, try to figure out what to do. The hedge magicians want to come clean about what happened with the belief that it’s the right thing to do. Meanwhile, the Brakebills students know the consequences of performing magic outside of school. They opt to stay quiet and never speak of this by implementing a binding spell amongst everyone. However, they soon find out that this isn’t just something that can be completely forgotten.

After finishing the previous issue, I knew that the group would be in for a rude awakening in terms of how dangerous magic could be. One of the many reasons why I fell in love with Grossman’s books was that it never held back in the consequences that were associated with magic. To no surprise, both the hedge magicians and Brakebills students are completely in shock. Both sides make convincing arguments as to why they should or shouldn’t come forward. Having them quickly agree to a plan would have removed the tension that came from this situation. It also humanizes the characters, rather than making them just seem like people with powers.

I was completely surprised by how quickly this situation brought them together. There was definitely tension amongst them in the events leading up to this, but seeing their classmates die in front of them was quite traumatic. I was worried from the start of the last issue that the two groups would be at odds with one another for a while. The Magicians #2 not only brought them together but they were able to create a bond from this unfortunate situation. I’m interested to see how the bonds they form will impact the rest of the series. It’ll surely create for some rather unique events, especially with the way this issue ended.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading The Magicians #2. I shouldn’t have been surprised, but I wasn’t expecting the series to get serious that quickly. That seriousness makes this series much more special since it’s not taking any time with unnecessary plot elements. For this being a continuation of Grossman’s original work, the series has found a way to distinguish itself from anything seen before but that sense of familiarity isn’t completely gone. The series is only two issues in and I already know it’s going to be one of the best series that I’ve had the pleasure of reading.

The Magicians #2 is available now wherever comic books are sold.


The Magicians #2
5

TL;DR

Overall, I really enjoyed reading The Magicians #2.