Wonder Con 2017 Report: The Magicians Take the Stage

The Magicians

This past weekend some of the cast and the creative minds behind the Syfy series The Magicians took to the stage at Wonder Con 2017 to talk about what has happened so far in season two.

Before cast members Jason Ralph, who plays Quentin Coldwater, and Stella Maeve, who plays Julia Wicker, as well as executive producers John McNamara and Sera Gamble were introduced by moderator Alicia Lutes from Nerdist.com, a teaser trailer of what’s to come during the last three episodes season two was screened.

Needless to say, there is still a lot to come in this magical world that has been called “the Harry Potter for grown-ups.”

When asked what season two has been like for the cast, Jason shared that it’s been a “more fluid story, as Quentin has been on one specific journey” this time around. He also shared that it’s been a “pleasure to get to act.”

John and Sera were then asked what it’s been like for them coming up with the direction of the second season, sharing that “it’s pretty fun to write the show;” in fact, the agreed that “the weirdest (story) ideas (is what we) will run (with).”

When asked about what it has been like for her to play her character Julia this season, Stella shared that, “it’s great; Julia is amazing.” She further shared that while the rape committed against Julia was extremely severe, “it wasn’t happening flippantly.” She further went on to share that this season “has been like tumbling, (though).” According to Stella the fan reaction for this season “has been a mixed bag of tricks.” She continued by saying that “there are some haters on Twitter.”

Shifting gears in the discussion, the cast was asked which world they prefer playing in: Brakebills versus Fillory – both Jason and Stella stated “Fillory” not because they didn’t like spending time at the magical school, but because it “felt like a real vacation.”

It was at this moment when a scene from tonight’s new episode was screened showing the dragon who Quentin and Julia need to convince to allow them to pass over into the Underworld. Jason explained that he was actually “very high” during filming because he was suffering from a bad cold and “high on DayQuil.” They both shared that during the filming of that scene Olivia Taylor Dudley, who plays Alice Quinn, helped provide the voice for the dragon (which was changed to someone else in post-production). They also shared a small spoiler for the episode that the Underworld is “exactly the same (as the real world); it’s a hotel lobby (where you have to) pull a number and watch an orientation video.”

They also talked about the 39 time loops at Brakebills where Julia attempted to become a student at the school. Stella joked that “it was like an ‘I told you so’ (in terms of) Julia “was supposed to be there.”

The recent musical number was, of course, discussed with John and Sera sharing that Hale Appleman, who plays Eliot Waugh, has a “three octave range” and when they learned that Summer Bishil, who plays Margo Hanson, and Brittany Curran, who plays Eliot’s wife Fen, could both sing, it came together rather organically. It also helped that John is a big fan of musicals. Both John and Sera did admit that, “there was a lot of tedious planning and choreography” involved in the musical scene.

During the audience Q&A, the cast was asked about the hand gestures used during the conjuring spells with Jason and Stella sharing that it’s “easier each time they do it (it gets easier).” John and Sera also shared that author Lev Grossman, on which the show is based, “does a (really) great job” helping them.”

Before the panel came to a close, the blooper reel for season two was screened, ending the panel with raucous laughter.

The next new episode of the second season of ‘The Magicians’ will air on Syfy tonight (Wednesday, April 5) at 9/8c.