With the end of December just around the corner, much of the television schedule has thinned. Most shows have either wrapped their latest season or gone on hiatus until after the New Year, transforming the small screen lineup into a string of reruns and holiday specials. So what’s a TV lover to do? Marathoning a new series is always a great way to kill time between the gap from fall to winter television, and it just so happens that The Magicians is coming to Netflix on Dec. 26, Syfy announced.
For those unfamiliar with the project, it premiered on Syfy last January. It’s based on Lev Grossman’s 2009 novel of the same name, and follows a story akin to Harry Potter. A young man named Quentin Coldwater (Jason Ralph) enrolls at Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy to be trained as a magician. Once there, he discovers the magic he read about in his favorite childhood books is actually very real, and it’s far more dangerous than enchanting. Its second season arrives on Jan. 25, so it’s the perfect time to prime yourself for the live reveal. But it only has 13 episodes so far, which may not tide you over for the next month. When you’re done marathoning The Magicians, here are seven other shows to try.
'The Shannara Chronicles'
Another new series, MTV’s The Shannara Chronicles similarly follows a group of young adults on a fantastical adventure. There are demons, elves, and an array of other mythical creatures. Also like The Magicians, it’s loosely based on a book: Terry Brooks’ 1982 epic The Elfstones of Shannara. Its first and only season is available in its entirety on Netflix.
Travelers actually hits Netflix on Dec. 23, so this could be a great holiday weekend marathon before you dive into The Magicians. Its 12-episode first season premiered on Showcase in October, but its December release date marks its global debut. The show centers around a group of five travelers who time travel to 2016 from 300 years in the future. Once in the 21st century, they inhabit other people’s bodies in an attempt to gather knowledge and save the world from a dismal future.
Created by Matrix veterans the Wachowskis, Sense8 focuses on eight strangers who suddenly find they’re linked through a psychological connection, allowing them to physically and mentally communicate from across the globe. While trying to make sense of their newfound powers, they must battle Whispers, an enigmatic villain who hunts down their kind. Its 12-episode first season premiered on Netflix in 2015, with its second set to arrive May 5. It will also release a two-hour Christmas special on Dec. 23, so there’s a whole lot of Sense8 to digest if you’ve yet to see it.
Netflix surprise-announced this sci-fi thriller earlier this month, and unveiled the full first season only days later. It was created by indie darlings Britt Marling and Zal Batmanglij (The East, Sound of My Voice) and traces the disappearance of Prairie Johnson, an adopted young woman who mysteriously resurfaces after going missing seven years prior.
Loosely based on Kass Morgan’s 2013-launched sci-fi series, this dystopian drama is set 97 years after a nuclear war has destroyed civilization. The only known survivors live on a mega-spaceship. When its life supports systems are found to be critically failing, 100 juvenile passengers are sent back to Earth, where they discover humanity isn’t as wiped out as they thought. All three of the show’s three seasons are on Netflix. Its fourth is set to premiere on The CW Feb. 1.
'The Tomorrow People'
Another sci-fi project from The CW, The Tomorrow People follows a group of humans granted supernatural abilities as they’re hunted by Ultra, a genetic cleansing organization that wants them dead. Its 22-episode first season is available on Netflix.
Between tells the story of an idyllic, rural town haunted by a mysterious disease that kills everyone over 22 years old. It airs on Canada’s City channel, but its two seasons are available on Netflix for international viewers.
Between these series and catching up on The Magicians, you have more than enough options for a great sci-fi/fantasy marathon.