Wizards: Tales of Arcadia

Credits

Cast

Network

Reviewer

Kristin Smith

TV Series Review

Something wicked this way comes…

Most would attribute that famous phrase to Shakespeare’s Macbeth, but he might’ve just cribbed the phrase from the great sorcerer Merlin. After all, who knows the wicked whims of evil wizards better than he?

The answer is no one. You see, Merlin has been around for a long time. Millenia, actually. He kept King Arthur of Camelot safe, all while raising up apprentices to understand and harness the power of magic.

But not all of his apprentices have the discipline and willpower to keep themselves from trailing down a perilous path. Why, just look at Merlin’s good-tuned-evil former student, Morgana, for instance, who is determined in present-day to destroy the small town of Arcadia and its inhabitants, along with Merlin himself.

And while that sounds like bad news (and, I mean, it is), there’s hope. Merlin’s still got some good eggs, like his apprentice Douxie who’s been involved in some atypical training for a long time—pushing a broom for centuries, in fact. And even though it often seems pointless, Douxie can’t deny that he’s learned a few important things from Merlin: Magic isn’t just a given and those who wish to possess it must show they are worthy. He also has learned that magic isn’t everything. Hard work and solid character will take you further than any supernatural staff could.  

These days, while remembering these truths, Douxie is protecting Arcadia from terrifying trolls, just waiting to unleash his full wizarding abilities. And the time has finally come. As Morgana’s attacks increase, Merlin rallies together Douxie, his shapeshifting feline associate, Archie, and the hidden, teenage warriors of Arcadia to fight for peace and the salvation of not just Arcadia, but the universe itself.

Wizarding Worlds

A Netflix original created by Guillermo Del Toro and animated by DreamWorks, Wizards: Tales of Arcadia is a TV-Y7 series that continues, and will finish off, the Arcadian trilogy which began with Trollhunters, followed by 3Below.  

Each episode clocks in close to 25 minutes and is filled with fantasy and action from start to finish. Like its predecessors, this latest installment focuses on teamwork, character and bravery. Young viewers, should they watch, will be exposed to some good lessons. But they also hear about “universal truths,” some toilet humor, bad attitudes and some pseudo-swear words.

And then there’s the magic. Fans of Del Toro will note his inclination toward twisted characters and dark themes. That isn’t completely absent here. Sure, this isn’t as grave as, say, Pan’s Labyrinth. It’s more like Harry Potter. But there is an overarching dark vibe. Not to mention creepy magical happenings, scary creatures and levitating villains.

Wizarding wonders aside, this animated kid show won’t be for everyone.

Episode Reviews

Aug. 7, 2020: “Spellbound”

Merlin’s apprentice, Douxie, is called from his days as a broom-pushing apprentice to find the guardians of Arcadia in hopes of saving the world against an evil wizard.

Scary-hooded villains use magical powers to try and destroy their enemies. Merlin makes a reference to past bloodshed. Wizards uses spells to fight against “specters” and demons.” Two ships get into an explosive battle.

Douxie and his friends say things like “nasty little beast,” “blasted,” “oh my gosh,” “what the heck,” “eat farts,” “butt snack,” “ship just got real,” “fuzz buckets” and “bewitched butt.” A teenager makes a reference to a cat who can lick his own behind.

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Kristin Smith

Kristin Smith joined the Plugged In team in 2017. Formerly a Spanish and English teacher, Kristin loves reading literature and eating authentic Mexican tacos. She and her husband, Eddy, love raising their children Judah and Selah. Kristin also has a deep affection for coffee, music, her dog (Cali) and cat (Aslan).

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