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S04.E12: The Secret Sea

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I love this show so damned much. Why can't we have 20 eps a season of this like other shows get?

All I can say is I want Elliot back this season.

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I cant believe that this season only has one episode left, I want it to keep going. There is still so much to do, and I will miss these characters so much. I've loved this season, but I miss Elliot so much, I need more time with him!

Poor poor Quentin is so sad. Fillory got him through severe depression, but when he got there, everything was all twisted and messed up, his favorite author was a pedophile (who is now stuck dealing with), his favorite character was a super villain, and everyone he cares about keep dying or getting hurt. 

Only on this show can a character have a big emotional revelation about their feelings for a person while they also happen to be a fish.

Look, I dont ask for much in life, but if I could just have Elliot coming back next week, and he and Q having a Big Damn Kiss that somehow saves the day, would that alright? Please, writers?

"Why do I need a name?"

"Starbucks, mostly."

Edited by tennisgurl
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This episode didn't work for me as much as I wanted to, and I can't quite put my finger on why. I think it was because we had so many characters missing (Eliot and Julia were monsters, Josh was a fish). And maybe because so much of it felt like set up. I think I will appreciate it more after next week, when hopefully we get some payoff for all of this.

What did work for me was Quentin's speech. I love the way they continue to acknowledge his depression and his struggle to feel normal and important. 

Also, I loved Margo, as always. The scene of her at the vet's office was amazing. I loved the advice that she could love Josh and still be a bitch. I also appreciated that she sat out to make sure Josh. Well, I liked the growth of admitting he matters. I didn't love the set up because I want her out there being a badass. She got the axes after all. 

What didn't work? Quentin and Alice. It feels like a backslide for both of their characters. I said it last week and I will say it again. Neither of them seems to be moving forward when they are together. Forgiveness is not the same as being together, and I wish it wouldn't have been tied together in that way. It was also boring to have Alice back to batting her eyes at Quentin and otherwise being useless. She is supposed to be a talented magician and she is relegated to boring pep talks. 

I am also having trouble getting into the Eliotmonster and Juliamonster plan here. I liked the comparison between the two and the acknowledgment that the Eliotmonster was more human than he wanted to admit. However, let's go get the old gods is a bit anticlimactic of a goal. Why not have them seek revenge against the Library. It would have been a more interesting point.

I did like Kady and Zelda and the realization that Penny could have been saved. The poison room scenes were interesting, though Everett's assertion that he will totes be different was a load of garbage. It was a bit disappointing to see Kady return to a defeated attitude. That also felt like backsliding. 

I thought it was weird that Quentin was the one with the "best chance". Not Margo who ruled and cared about her people? Not Fen who lives there (did it have to be someone not from Filory because I didn't hear that in the rules). It gave us a great scene, so I will hand wave it. 

I honestly believe next week is going to give us some satisfying emotional and plot payoff. This show generally does a great job closing the loop. I think I am just ready for some resolution.

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Yes! Margo realizing she loves Josh was fabulous. She has grown so much this season.

25 minutes ago, tennisgurl said:

Look, I dont ask for much in life, but if I could just have Elliot coming back next week, and he and Q having a Big Damn Kiss that somehow saves the day, would that alright? Please, writers?

I want this too. 

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The Margo show ruins in part what could have otherwise been really good. They have used all that time with her to always make her look cool which cheapens her character and the others like Fen.

Another divinity that goes out too easily. Persephone knew the urgency but did not teleport away once Julia got possessed? It seems a bit lazy on the script. Especially knowing the gods can see the future.

They gave Quentin something to do for once,  it was nice to see, I loved the mixed feelings moment when his favorite author signs the book.

The season is almost over and hopefully its end will allow more space for next year for Julia, Fen, Elliot to be developed and a better direction for Alice who has been aimless for too long.

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The stupid "Eliot is a monster" plot is NEVER. GOING. TO. END. I've been waiting for it to end since it started last season, why is it still going on? I can't believe it's been the entire season, & it's still happening. Why have they made Julia part of it now? Are they ever going to do anything else?

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I haven't seen any spoilers, this is pure speculation:

Spoiler

The heroes will defeat the monsters but barely a moment will pass before Everett arrives and steals their power, setting himself up as a knowledge-god and the next season's big bad. His focus on knowledge will allow themes of magic-as-imagination, while he tries to remove all magic from the worlds; he wants the universe to be knowable and magic is fundamentally unknowable. The Library invades Fillory and goes to war with... the... Hades Bureau? where OG Penny now works.

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6 hours ago, The Companion said:

What didn't work? Quentin and Alice. It feels like a backslide for both of their characters. I said it last week and I will say it again. Neither of them seems to be moving forward when they are together. Forgiveness is not the same as being together, and I wish it wouldn't have been tied together in that way. It was also boring to have Alice back to batting her eyes at Quentin and otherwise being useless. She is supposed to be a talented magician and she is relegated to boring pep talks. 

I did not love that at all. It's not forward momentum for either of them. I wish that Quentin had said he wanted to try again as friends. Two extra words. Also I'm hoping that whenever they defeat the monster twins, Alice is single and free to help Zelda actually reform the library. Alice needs some way to really learn how to have a healthier relationship with magic.

I'm also sick of the monster story. Julia is an almost god; what's happening inside of Eliot should not be what's happening inside of Julia. Julia should be able to strip Sis' powers and kick her out.

Dean Fogg as magical James Bond was amazing.

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19 minutes ago, HunterHunted said:

I did not love that at all. It's not forward momentum for either of them. I wish that Quentin had said he wanted to try again as friends.

It would not be a TV show if two people who love each other "Elliot and Quentin" were both free of romantic entanglements the moment they realize their love and have a chance to act on it.

I wonder if the "Fairy Eye" working even when it is not in Margo's head will be used in other plot lines. Very "Brother From Another Planet".

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2 hours ago, AnimeMania said:

It would not be a TV show if two people who love each other "Elliot and Quentin" were both free of romantic entanglements the moment they realize their love and have a chance to act on it.

I wonder if the "Fairy Eye" working even when it is not in Margo's head will be used in other plot lines. Very "Brother From Another Planet".

I think that is another thing that annoys me about the pairing. It feels shoehorned in there to cause drama. There wasn't enough build up to make it feel like a natural progression of the plot. This show has a way of turning expectations on their head, so maybe there will be some tweak to the traditional love triangle/pining for someone plot, but it doesn't feel like it from here. 

There were plenty of potential sources of drama for the pairing, so why go with a love triangle? 

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I have no horse in the race of Q & A or Q & L so I'm not bothered about what went on last night. I'm just glad Quentin and Alice are having real conversations now. She's more supportive now and she helped him with the Fillory thing. I think this has been a good season for Alice and her learning how to deal with the different sides of herself. Next step is to tighten her friendships with other people. I loved her gently pushing Margo to think about her real feelings towards Josh.

Monster sister Julia was kind of awesome but I do hate that her choices keep getting taken from her. MonsterE and MonsterJ had some freaky weird almost incest-y chemistry going on. I was digging it while also feeling a bit uncomfortable. It works for this crazy show.

I'm going to have to go back and watch Quentin's scene in the cave again. I know it was really great but I was so tired at the end of the show I know I didn't catch it all.

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46 minutes ago, AnimeMania said:

I wasn't feeling MonsterJuila, I think it was the voice.

I think it was that she basically took MonsterE's affect and copied it. There was no originality in the portrayal.

Another week of me throwing a towel at the TV like "Come ONNNNN!!!" - I can't believe we only have one more episode. My Thursday mornings are going to be so depressing. Who do we petition to get a full season?!!

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11 hours ago, The Companion said:

I thought it was weird that Quentin was the one with the "best chance". Not Margo who ruled and cared about her people? Not Fen who lives there (did it have to be someone not from Filory because I didn't hear that in the rules). It gave us a great scene, so I will hand wave it. 

I honestly believe next week is going to give us some satisfying emotional and plot payoff. This show generally does a great job closing the loop. I think I am just ready for some resolution.

While the probably could have done a better job of making it clearer, I think the implication was it had to be someone who loved Fillory like Martin loved Filory to get the flower to bloom.  Margo and Fen love Filory in a more concrete practical way.  Margo is sort of mama bear about because she feels responsible for Filory despite despising the whimsy.  And Fen loves it because it's her home and she wants the best for it.  Quentin loves the possibility of Filory.  A recurring theme that's come up with him is that he loves magic, not in what it can do for him sort of way, but he just loves that magic exists.  His love for Filory is an extension of that.  Quentin doesn't love the citizens of Filory or even the land, he loves the idea of Filory-a magical world.  He loves the idea of it as an escape from the mundane world, just like Martin loved it as an escape from Plover.

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@Proclone that was so well said and it's 

Spoiler

Quentin from the books to a T.

 Y'all I keep changing my mind every week but now I'm back to thinking it's Quentin that gets welcomed to the Underworld by Penny40. I think his tone fits that it could be Quentin. Shit, I don't know! I can't believe we only have one episode left. ☹️

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2 hours ago, Proclone said:

While the probably could have done a better job of making it clearer, I think the implication was it had to be someone who loved Fillory like Martin loved Filory to get the flower to bloom.  Margo and Fen love Filory in a more concrete practical way.  Margo is sort of mama bear about because she feels responsible for Filory despite despising the whimsy.  And Fen loves it because it's her home and she wants the best for it.  Quentin loves the possibility of Filory.  A recurring theme that's come up with him is that he loves magic, not in what it can do for him sort of way, but he just loves that magic exists.  His love for Filory is an extension of that.  Quentin doesn't love the citizens of Filory or even the land, he loves the idea of Filory-a magical world.  He loves the idea of it as an escape from the mundane world, just like Martin loved it as an escape from Plover.

I do think that is ultimately how it ends up, right? His love of the idea of Fillory has to count for something. It is just that the conversation leading up to that point didn't really make that clear, and it didn't seem like any of them really understood the rules, so why not have multiple people give it a go? 

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55 minutes ago, The Companion said:

I do think that is ultimately how it ends up, right? His love of the idea of Fillory has to count for something. It is just that the conversation leading up to that point didn't really make that clear, and it didn't seem like any of them really understood the rules, so why not have multiple people give it a go? 

I totally agree that the conversation didn't really make it clear, but I do think the kind of implied it.  Plover says that Martin couldn't make the flower bloom when he came back as an adult, because his love for Filory had changed (I'm paraphrasing).  The implication being that you needed to love Filory in a childlike way to get it to bloom.  Like I said, Margo and Fen (despite her sort of childlike innocence some of the time) love Filory in a more adult way.  Quentin is the only one of the group that loved Filory with that childlike sense of wonder and I think everyone is aware of that.  

I do think it would have been interesting seeing different characters express their love for Filory, but I think it would have taken too much time without adding anything particularly groundbreaking.  I would have liked Margo bitching about hating the whimsy of Filory some more though, for some reason that always tickles me.

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I'm getting really nervous that one of the major characters is going to die. Granted, Penny died and now we have two of them, so that's not necessarily the end of a character on this show. But they're building up to something so big it has me worried the show is going to try to do something "daring" just to shake it (and us) up.

I've actually sort of enjoyed Alice's journey this season except for the fact that I still don't know where she stands. The reason she's on the outs with everyone (not just Quentin) is that she tried to sabotage their attempts to bring back magic by destroying the keys. I get that she's sorry but I'm not sure what she's sorry for. She's sorry the Library did what they did because that wasn't her intention either but if she had her way, would she still prefer magic be gone forever? That's something she really needs to articulate before she can move forward, otherwise she's still being too cagey to trust.

I don't know that a lot of people are really invested in Alice and Quentin because on re-watch their "romance" was really quite short-lived. There were only a few episodes between the first time they slept together and the time she found him in bed with Margo and Eliot. They've spent the vast majority of their relationship broken up rather than together. That said, their relationship is probably the most complicated one on the show and, IMO, fascinating because of that.

I don't really feel "cheated" out of seeing Eliot this season because Hale Appleman has been knocking it out of the part with his portrayal of the monster. I cracked up so hard when his sister asked what he needed a name for and he said "Starbucks, mostly."

Also? Sheila asking Alice if all bunnies could talk, and Alice replying "some of them you have to bribe with cigarettes." LOL. I think that was a nod to the raspy voice they use for the bunnies (it's actually one of the writers and he really sounds like that.)

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So it sudden occurred to me that Plover is also in a basically indestructible body. I am totally unspoiled, but now I think the axes are going to work on Elliot and then the god-brother is going to hop right on into Plover. 

Penny is still my fave. Penny40 and Kady tearing it up in the afterlife could be fun. But I'm not sure who is going to end up in that elevator. 

"Did you fuck this goldfish?" Amazing. 

This show kills me.

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On ‎4‎/‎11‎/‎2019 at 12:49 PM, The Companion said:

Forgiveness is not the same as being together, and I wish it wouldn't have been tied together in that way.

Ditto and honestly I was surprised. This was up there with the Julia/P23 hookup for me - I felt it was unearned and can't work out why the writers thought it was necessary. Q&A didn't break up because of a lack of trust - they broke up because their relationship was over. Marrying the rebuilding of their trust to a reconciliation is weird.

I said last week I didn't see the moments between them as about them getting back together and I'm disappointed to be wrong. This is a bit banal actually and I expect more of the show. This decision felt - kind of like a thing that happens in a TV show.

Having said that, Q&A at the end of this episode are very much in a S1 finale space. I do feel that's deliberate and the writers are deliberately framing what's happening in reference to season 1. I just don't feel they did the legwork to get there.

But in that vein - S1 did not end well for Alice. Assuming that Quentin has finally gotten his hero's journey by not being a hero at all, this could be the end for him.

Quote

I thought it was weird that Quentin was the one with the "best chance". Not Margo who ruled and cared about her people? Not Fen who lives there.

This made sense to me because I thought it was about the Martin thing - not somebody who loves Fillory as a real place but somebody who loves it as an ideal. Margo and Fen both love Fillory in a real way, which is to say they don't love "Fillory" at all but the very real people with real concerns that live there.

13 hours ago, Proclone said:

Quentin doesn't love the citizens of Filory or even the land, he loves the idea of Filory-a magical world.  He loves the idea of it as an escape from the mundane world, just like Martin loved it as an escape from Plover.

Yes, that's how I saw it as well

15 hours ago, AnimeMania said:

I wasn't feeling MonsterJuila, I think it was the voice.

I rarely feel Julia generally as I find the actor's choices annoying in an understated way that somehow feels like OVERacting. This was particularly stark for MonsterJulia.

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I read the current developments as:

  • the writers do see Quentin/Eliot as the final, enduring romance;
  • they decided to reconcile Quentin and Alice because they plan to kill her character, and they wanted her death to have impact on at least one of the others;
  • once dead, she will (I predict) show up in an elevator.
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2 hours ago, owenthurman said:

I read the current developments as:

  • the writers do see Quentin/Eliot as the final, enduring romance;
  • they decided to reconcile Quentin and Alice because they plan to kill her character, and they wanted her death to have impact on at least one of the others;
  • once dead, she will (I predict) show up in an elevator.

I hadn't considered Alice at all but those are good points. I'm still thinking Quentin though. Lost his dad, Eliot to the monster and now Julia. He's been on the edge all season. I know that he loves Alice but I think there may a grabbing onto any port in the storm component to him wanting to try again with her. He's shown growth but I still think there's something inside that won't let go of the need to be the hero. I can see a sacrificing himself for Eliot type of scenario. With all the talk of the white male protagonist this season and the 'we're not watching the story we think we are" I can see it being Quentin. It would be strange next season if Q isn't there because he is the center of these guys. I could see the writers wanting to play with that. Without Q around it also would force Alice to have stories with others besides him.

We shall see in less than a week!

Edited by festivus
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17 hours ago, iMonrey said:

That said, their relationship is probably the most complicated one on the show and, IMO, fascinating because of that.

They are most definitely complicated. I like calling it fascinating. All of their emotional scars and internal guards make it that way.

9 hours ago, AudienceofOne said:

Q&A didn't break up because of a lack of trust - they broke up because their relationship was over.

I think that it was over for the people they were then. Building off my idea that the two of them brought an incredible amount of baggage into their relationship, there was very little chance of it lasting. Quentin suffers from depression. Alice was full of all the damage her parents did to her, not to mention the loss of her brother and whatever else that got in the way of making real connections with people. 

And yet, for a while, there was love. They made each other happy. Happy is not a place either one of them spent a lot of time occupying prior to that. The feelings that flooded into them at that point could easily be described as like a drug.

Love, of course, is that drug and is an insanely powerful emotion. It just doesn't go away. 

And I don't feel like that relationship ended because there wasn't love between them. I feel like it was just two people with too many broken parts, too much self-doubt, to ever turn that relationship into a healthy trusting one.

So it doesn't surprise me that after living through the experiences they had since breaking up, some (but PLENTY more to go) emotional healing by both of them, that they might consider starting anew. Not starting over; they have to acknowledge everything that has happened, but it does make sense that they could really want to spend time together again. Real, intimate, sharing of time and emotions.

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On 4/11/2019 at 2:24 AM, HunterHunted said:

I did not love that at all. It's not forward momentum for either of them. I wish that Quentin had said he wanted to try again as friends. Two extra words.

I don't think it would've worked for me either way. The whole "try again" thing felt extremely unearned to me. It was such a quick emotional turnaround for him. What we saw in the previous episode between his being so completely untrusting of her and the moment he said that was just...not enough to make any sense to me. If he'd just said he'd gone from not trusting her to wanting to trust her, and leaving it there, that I'd buy. Basically him accepting a truce and a willingness to be more than barely civil to her, that much would've made sense to me. But anything more and I felt like...what did they cut out that he's supposedly basing this on.

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no! Q! step away from Alice!

come on. you don't tease us with the OTP the level of Q and Eliot and then throw Q back at Alice.

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I'm not feeling the Q/Eliot pairing, and I suppose that's a pretty unpopular opinion. I love both of them, but if they are the love story here, I just don't think the show laid that groundwork properly.

The revelation of Eliot's biggest regret was a surprise to me, because I thought the life-in-a-day episode was clunky (although beautiful). As it was shown, Quentin turned to Eliot until he partnered with and had a child with the first woman he saw. So I thought it was SAD for Eliot, not love-affirming. It cemented for me the idea that Q is an unhappy person, constantly seeking something that will fix him. First it was magic, then Julia, then Alice, then Eliot. The recent Alice developments only reaffirm that, in my opinion. How many times has he said a variation of "shouldn't we try? It might work." 

Edited by RedInk
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I kinda expected Our Lady Underground to be a little more... of a badass than she was here.   That's disappointing to me to say the least. 

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1 hour ago, RedInk said:

I'm not feeling the Q/Eliot pairing, and I suppose that's a pretty unpopular opinion.

I agree. Honestly I don’t like any of the romantic relationships on the show except for Penny40/Kady (and even that li don’t think is strong enough for her to be willing to die, but that’s another point). I do love all the various friendships on the show, especially the Margo/Eliot and Quentin/Julia ones. In fact the scenes with Julia where they’ve just kind of been scoobying around or are acting like the nerds they really are have been my favourite Quentin scenes.

Dean Fogg James Bonding his way through the Library was a lot of fun. I loved those puppies.

On the whole, I didn’t like this episode much since it felt a little like filler to me but I guess that’s since they’re building to the big ending. I haven’t liked this season as much as season 3 which felt a lot tighter in plottin but I did like how they linked the Library plot back to the monster story bringing all the strands together. 

Edited by dippydee
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Really, the monsters are blaming their parents for being born?

Our Lady Underground seemed pretty weak.

greating timing by Q and A, that appears to have saved Dean Fogg.  It does make me wonder if now its one of the librarians that Penny40 saw, like Everett's right hand man, or even Everett himself.  Or maybe it will end up being Dean Fogg, if he gets in the middle of the fight (though I hope not).  It seems that Penny40 learns something key that will have to get reported to the Scoobies to do something, we just don't know what.

i do think that the monsters going after their parents is part of the set up for the final season.  I liked someone's idea above that they might get the monster out of Eliot, but then Plover shows up at the last minute and the monster lands there.  And maybe the ice axes don't work on Julia because she's "indestructible" like Plover, so next season, the Scoobies have to figure out a way to work with the old gods to get the monsters out of Plover and Julia (and maybe part of that is Julia's choice to become human again).

I loved Q's speech as to why he loves the idea of Fillory.

I hope Zelda finds a cure and they get Kady to take it.  I know she's mourning for Penny40, but her dying won't get her really closer to him.

I love how the writers get all these moving parts to connect, like Margo being able to take her fairy eye out of her head to watch Josh so she can sleep or poop.

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Mostly I just don't think OTPs are the point and so "who will end up with who?" isn't that important. The writers don't seem interested in selling us one and I for one find that refreshing. 

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Is it sad that I was thinking about the life-cycle of Dying fish? I mean, if d-fish need pretty much constant eye contact to keep from croaking prematurely in an already short lifespan and that eye contact usually come from their mothers, who is usually staring at the mothers who are a whole lot closer to the end of their own lifespans?

Hmm, the curse/spell that Martin laid on Plover to keep him alive seems to have survived the shutoff of human magic. As did the curse on the lake. Does this mean Martin as the Beast was more akin to a god or magical beast/creature than a human magician, however souped up?

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I loved everything about the dying fish from the idea of it, to the way it went belly up dead when Margo got Margo about it, to the vet visit (“It’s also a werewolf”), to Margo saying Maybe I do love this guppy. 

The whole thing was great. 

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14 hours ago, Terrafamilia said:

Hmm, the curse/spell that Martin laid on Plover to keep him alive seems to have survived the shutoff of human magic.

All of Brakebills should have fallen to rubble since you know it wasn't built by human labor and probably wasn't constructed to practical architectural standards.

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Our Lady Underground is Persephone isnt she? Because if Hades doesnt get involved because of her “death,” I’m going to be real disappointed. Or Demeter. The writers have a golden opportunity to use the phrase “There will be Hell to pay,” I hope they get to use it.

Called Julia being body snatched. They should have been more discrete about her when MonsterEliot was around.

I’m frustrated with the backslide of Quentin and Alice’s relationship. I think they’re real toxic for each other. Does Alice even know about Quentin’s lifetime with Eliot?

I can’t wait to watch tonight’s episode tomorrow. I don’t know if I’m going to have the fortitude to be spoiler-free.

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