What If Wednesday
28

Sorry for skipping “What If Wednesday” last week. I bit off more than I could chew by trying to finish the “Yin and Yang” post, chapter two of my fanfic, and this post around the same time. Hopefully, I can get back on track now.

Today’s “What If” question: “What if Specialists and Paladins could have advanced forms like fairies do?”

What do I mean by “advanced forms?” I don’t mean transformations, per se, but that depends on the class. Specialists and Paladins are different from each other — at least they’re supposed to be. Rainbow hasn’t clearly shown the difference between them, so their development could be a way to distinguish them from each other.

Specialists

Almost eight years ago (yes, it’s been that long), I wrote a post asking what in Magix Specialists are. Griffin calls them “wizards” in “A Friendship Sundered” (1X08), and the season two website called Codatorta a “magician.” Those terms don’t make sense because Specialists don’t have magic powers. (Helia does, but they probably run in the family.)

Specialists just seem to be all-purpose heroes. They fight monsters, save princesses, carry out secret missions, etc. We can guess Redfountain isn’t the only place that trains them, since in season five, Roy wore a different uniform designed for underwater missions.

Is that all there is to them? Maybe not. The word specialist means “a person highly skilled in a specific and restricted field.” In some Winx dubs, the Specialists are called Experts. Same idea.

The first time I remember hearing “Specialist” in this sense is in season six. In “A Monster Crush” (6X21), Tecna’s mother Magnethia asks Timmy what field he specializes in. Aisha says he’s “a pro at mechanic design, navigation, and all-around problem solving.” I’d add strategy to that list, too. He’s used all of those skills in missions over the years.

What about the other Specialists? Do they have specific skills other than fighting? I can’t think of any. Riven was good at picking locks, but he probably learned that growing up. (The season two website said he was “skilled as a thief.”) Maybe Timmy’s the special one. 😛

Thirteen years and seven seasons later, it’s still not clear what Specialists are. That doesn’t mean they’re worthless, though. The Magic Universe needs non-magic beings, too. Magic fails sometimes and isn’t appropriate for every situation. Plus, the Specialists have always known more about magic creatures and how to handle them.

What would an advanced Specialist form look like? Maybe we’ve seen it already. Since Sky’s squad got new outfits and weapons in season six, maybe they graduated. If so, what will their futures be like? How will they use what they’ve learned?

Paladins

Nex and Thoren may be new to the Boys Club, but Paladins aren’t new to the series. Rainbow first used the term “Paladin” in the original Winx season two. In “The Mysterious Stone” (2X07), when Avalon takes off his hood and reveals himself, Bloom, Stella, and Aisha yell, “It’s the Paladin who rescued us from the Trix!”

When they met Avalon in “Magic Bonding” (2X05), he was wearing armor and a pair of angel wings. Some fans think that Avalon was the impostor sent by Darkar. Here’s a question, though: how did those three know he was a Paladin? He didn’t tell them. They said it like it was common knowledge — or it was the first term that popped into their heads.

4Kids tried to expand on the concept of Paladins. In “Professor Avalon’s Secret” (2X09) — a.k.a. “The Angel of Doom” — Avalon says, “There are 10,000 Paladins with the same wings I have.” Yes, I know the 4Kids dub doesn’t count, but why couldn’t Rainbow keep this idea?

The word paladin means a “knightly or heroic champion.” That sounds like the Specialists, but here’s an interesting detail: it has a religious background. Medieval legends talk about an order of Paladins called The Twelve Peers who served Charlemagne, a devout Christian emperor of Rome. (I’m not condoning his actions; I’m just stating historical facts.)

Fantasy games like Dungeons & Dragons and World of Warcraft have adapted this by making Paladins “holy warriors.” They embody chivalry, purity, and light, and they have magic abilities like healing. That sounds like Avalon, doesn’t it? His wings radiated a powerful light, and he was able to restore the Winx’s energy.

No one would describe Nex and Thoren as “chivalrous” and “pure,” though. (Maybe Thoren, but not Nex.) That’s fine, though, because it means they have room for character development. I’d love to see them become holy warriors.

Rainbow could easily make Avalon’s winged form an advanced Paladin form. How would they earn it? A year at Light Rock Monastery? A character arc where they have to confront their inner darkness? Imagine the possibilities!

That’s it for today’s “What If Wednesday.” I’m not sure what I’ll talk about next time, but I have a list of topics already. Stay tuned.

Musings & Rants
11

Yes, I have a brother. I know I don’t talk about him much, but he used to watch Winx Club, too. He stopped just because it wasn’t on anymore. That was back in the 4Kids days.

Last year, we got into a long conversation about the show. I was surprised by how much he remembered. He still knew the names of most of the main characters, the three schools in Magix, and the villains (he called Valtor “Balfour,” but close enough). He also remembered small details like how Flora gets treated like a piñata most of the time (his words, not mine).

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I’ve talked to him about the show a few times since then. He says he didn’t have a favorite Winx, but he liked Musa a lot. First of all, he liked her relationship with — no, not Riven (he hated him)  — her father Ho-Boe. Second, he liked that she wasn’t just one of the Winx, but she also had a dream of becoming a musician. That gave her more depth than the others.

As for the guys, he thinks they were all useless and unnecessary. They were just “Ken dolls.” I managed to get him to pick a favorite, anyway: Brandon. Why? He liked his weapon, and he admired him for being able to put up with Stella. 😛 (Again, his words.)

During that first conversation, I told him a spinoff called World of Winx was coming soon (back when we thought it would air in the spring). He was so interested, he said he might watch it! That got me excited! Could this lure him back into the Winx Club universe?

Nope.

As soon as I said the Winx are still the main characters, he said he’ll pass. He doesn’t wanna watch another show “from Bloom’s perspective.” Why focus on them again when there are so many background characters whose stories haven’t been told?

I know other fans feel the same way. They’ve talked about wanting to see spinoffs about the guys, a new fairy club, or even the Trix. He said he wouldn’t mind one about the villains, but he thinks the evil trio has been “played out.” (I guess he felt the Trix were overused even in seasons 1-3.)

But what he really wants to see is a spinoff about the older characters like Faragonda, Griselda, Griffin, Saladin, Oritel and Marion, etc. What were they like when they were younger? How did they get where they are today?

Also, how and when were the three schools founded? What was Magix like before they were built? Rainbow’s never answered those questions, but they’d help build the mythology of the series.

I told him the Winx went back in time to old Alfea in season seven. They met young Faragonda, saw what the school used to be like (complete with uniforms), and met the previous headmistress Mavilla. His response was, “A whole season of that, please.” He thinks it’ll never happen, though, because it probably wouldn’t sell dolls.

What do you think? Would you watch my brother’s dream spinoff? What other Winx characters do you wanna see a show about?

 

Caption Contest
2

Thanks to everyone who voted! Congratulations to the winner: Yolanda! Next contest begins tomorrow! Stay tuned!

Stella: I have great news, the girls and I have just gained Tynix!

Brandon: But I thought Enchantix was–

Stella: Don’t be silly!

— By Yolanda

Caption Contest
2

Time to pick a winner! You have 24 hours to vote for your favorite caption! (To see them again, click here.) Good luck to everyone!

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Caption Contest
9

I’m bringing back something I haven’t done in two years: The Caption Contest! I’ve been wanting to do this again for a while. Can’t believe it’s been so long since the last one! (We’ll just ignore the fact I never announced the winner. 😳 )

Just in time for Stella’s birthday, this week’s screenshot from season six stars her with her beau Brandon. Submit your caption by Friday, August 19 (the day after her birthday)! Good luck!

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