Wanna bet we can get you to watch The Magicians with just two words? "Wizard sex." Did you hear that? It was the sound of your DVR setting a series record all on its own.
OK yes, The Magicians, which has its season two premiere on Wednesday, January 25th, does have wizard sex, but fans of Lev Grossman's best-selling trilogy from which the Syfy drama is based on and new viewers alike should know that there are many, many more awesome reasons to tune-in. The Magicians is dark and sexy and adult and fun and scary and yeah, we could go on and on. It's kind of like Harry Potter on drugs.
"I was comparing to Bret Easton Ellis meets Harry Potter," star Stella Maeve perfectly says of the series, which comes from former Supernatural showrunner Sera Gamble and Michael London. "It's got that dark edge."
Die-hard fans of the books should know there are a few big changes. 1. The characters are not teenagers when we first meet them, but grad students. 2. Janet from the book series has been renamed Margot. 3. There's A LOT more Julia in the TV series than in the first book. (And that's a very good thing.)
"Fans can find reassurance in that Lev has been with us every step of the way and he's been totally creatively involved in this and signed off on everything," Maeve, who plays Julia, assures of the page-to-screen tweaks.
"When the plot shifts, the spirit is still there," Jason Ralph, who portrays Quentin Coldwater, the brooding protagonist who is the viewers' entry into Brakebills University, the secret school of magic at the center of the show, adds.
Beginning with The Chronicles of Narnia to Harry Potter, The Magicians feels like the natural next step in the evolution of the fantasy genre.
"Anyone who's loved fantasy as a kid and has then grown up and longed for that idea, but has also been met with the challenges of the real world. I think that it's really appropriate," breakout star Hale Appleman, who plays Eliot (a definite shoe-in for one of your favorite TV characters of all time), says. "I think anyone who has loved Harry Potter but perhaps is now a little more mature and taking on some of life challenges, I think it's a perfect fit."
Examples of more adult tone? Appleman quickly lists, "There's wizard sex—floating sex—and drugs and downward spirals and murders."
The second season of The Magicians premieres on Wednesday, January 25th at 9 p.m. on Syfy.
(E! and Syfy are both part of the NBCUniversal family)
(Originally published Jan 25, 2016, at 7:52 a.m. PT)