To all of those fans who thought urban fiction and dark romance were a passé, well think again! If you ever desire to be transported away from life , then my friends this TV series is what I’d call your perfect escape. A world where one can lose and find oneself. And thank God for that because A Discovery of Witches is a story that lives up to its promise, and leaves no stone unturned to make it binge-worthy.
A Discovery of Witches begins in Oxford, England during the Autumn Equinox. The series walks you through the story of Diana Bishop, a young witch who has forsaken her magical abilities to lead an ordinary life just like any other human being.
A prodigy who is an alchemy scholar, heads over to the Oxford University, to tend to her research work in the Bodleian Library. When she accidentally stumbles on a lost manuscript known as Ashmole 782, little did she knew that she was opening a Pandora’s Box!
Her first interactions with the book alarms a bevy of creatures, among them,Matthew Clairmont, a notable vampire , who dives in deep with her and gets more tangled up while seeking out the truth, leading to a forbidden love story.
For true supernatural fans, the very storyline instantly hooks you up.
If you’ve loved journeying the dark worlds of mythical creatures and have read the All Souls Trilogy, you know it clearly where Deborah Harkness, another luminary of literature who executive-produces the series along with Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner, is taking this supernatural romance.
This genre does exceptionally well in catering to the needs which one might expect from this show.
The story of Mathew and Diana is a romance, yes, but this saga is so much more than just a fantasy drama. What I loved most of all is this subtle intertwining of historical fact and popular myths into a riveting and spellbinding adventure that keeps one on the edge of their seat. The plot is intricately woven with a mysterious manuscript at its center. And most importantly, the lead characters are being made Equals in all aspects, both are hugely successful in their respective fields, and they often have to fight to find their place in the world (which has started already from the point Ashmole was touched).
Moreover, the characters are backed up with depth and believable backstories (well, much more in the novels rather than in TV, but that’s ok). Added to this the historical knowledge and detail it becomes an experience that you will not forget soon.
Believe me, when I finally decided to review this, I was a bit skeptical myself. But when I watched it, I couldn’t help myself but instantly fall in love. Though some of the supporting stories aren’t explored much despite that also, I can say it’s a pretty good TV adaptation of the much-beloved original novel, which is authored by the very bright and talented Deborah Harkness.
She said, “when I started to wonder if there are witches and vampires, what do they do for a living?” A Discovery of Witches was the unexpected answer to that question….” The resulting magnum opus was a 600 pages long, making the way all up to the New York Times bestseller list, the first volume in a projected trilogy.
Lastly, over the quick eight episodes, A Discovery of Witches knows what it is supposed to do, and it delivers it reasonably well. Sometimes you might frown (with some scenes), but you got to admit the fact that this show has unique parlance, coupled with its richness of rural French hills and the beautiful shots of Wales, Oxford and Venice backdrops.
Take it from me. One can watch the series any day. Watch it on a weekend break. Or when the rain falls in the garden. Watch it with chocolates and a glass of wine and recognize it for what it is – a slightly schmaltzy show with some fresh set of concepts that’ll keep you engaged but not negligent of your social life.
Believe it or not, “Magic is desire made real.”