Nostalgia Revamp, Make it Darker – Fate: The Winx Saga

Let’s be honest here, Fate: The Winx Saga is a cash grab aimed at people who grew up watching the Winx Club Saturday mornings as a kid. Nostalgia baiting at its finest. I saw this bait, gave it a munch, and determined that it was quite tasty despite reusing stale ideas. As a member of the target audience, I enjoyed this darker reimagining of the Winx Club. It still has themes of friendship as part of the core plot but everything is darker: the characters with their newfound angst, political coverups/conspiracies, creepy new enemies, consequences of war, steamy hookups, trust issues, and Alfea isn’t pink anymore.  

Verdict

Fate: The Winx Saga (Netflix) ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

No, no, no, no, no, no… Wait hang on. They didn’t have Tecna! How dare they exclude one of the best (and my favorite) from the Winx girls. Fix this in season two people! -★

FINAL SCORE – Fate: The Winx Saga (Netflix) ★★★★★★☆☆☆☆

This is meant to be an entertaining, darker remake for the now-adult fans of the original series. People who are completely new to the series may watch and enjoy Fate: The Winx Saga but it would be a completely different experience. I can’t view this show without comparing it to what I watched as a kid and my review reflects this. Most likely without the nostalgia goggles, the rating would change. Seeing the new versions of old characters in an updated grim version of this magical realm is fun. I get to compare and contrast the differences between the two and enjoy a familiar story with a setting that no longer has the childish simplicity of the original. It’s not something I would rave about to others and try to convert them to loyal fans. It is a show I would recommend to those who watched the original to see the changes and to those who would like to watch a slightly campy magical romp.

You would like this series if

  • Have watched the original series. Ahhh…. Nostalgia… so comfy. 
  • Like fantasy movies/tv shows.
  • Enjoy “teen dramas” because that is what Fate is according to Wikipedia.
  • Want to see a female Dumbledore. My exact words while watching were “Dang it, I was hoping for a McGonagall, but no, she’s a Dumbledore.” 
  • Don’t want to commit to a long series. There are only six episodes. 

Story

Bloom is raised by normal human parents in our world without magic. When she accidentally starts a fire due to her anger she discovers she has magic powers. Once she has discovered her powers and newfound status as a fairy Bloom decides to learn how to control her new abilities. Bloom is sent to Alfea, the most prestigious fairy academy in the kingdom of Solaria. She is assigned to the “Winx Suite” and meets her new suitemates. Early on Bloom discovers that her heritage isn’t what she thought it was and tries to find answers. 

Bloom’s quest for answers is the main plot but some secondary plots and events flesh out the story. Most of these events and stories have to do with relationship drama with the Winx girls, both boy drama and friend drama. I’m not going to elaborate on those so I can avoid spoilers. The other secondary arc introduces a character named Beatrix. She is a first-year student at Alfea. Immediately it is clear that she has hidden, possibly sinister, motives for her actions. What she does causes some dramatic chains of events that affect the plot just as much as Bloom’s search. 

Remake Yay or Nay

Remakes of old movies and tv shows are always hit or miss. Mainly because it will always be compared to the source material. If that wasn’t a big enough hurdle to get over, remakes also have to handle an audience with strong emotions and opinions about the original. Nostalgia is pretty powerful. These feelings become a desire to see the new version be just as good as the original or at least good enough to make it worth the time to watch. When a remake doesn’t live up to expectations it’s easy to feel angry at the remake not just for having wasted time on something bland or just plain ol’ bad but also because it’s easy to feel like the new material disrespected the original. 

Is Fate: The Winx Saga a good remake of Winx Club? Short answer yes. I think it is interesting and worth the watch time. I wouldn’t call it a remake though. Fate is more of a reimagining of Winx Club. While they kept most of the characters, settings, and base plots there are also many changes. The entire show has a far darker tone than the original. Coverups and covert spying are common themes throughout season one. Characters face deeper, more difficult personal challenges about identity, relationships, self-worth, grief/loss, their past, and insecurities. Not to mention, some characters are completely new while others don’t appear at all. (Seriously where is Tecna?) All in all that’s why I enjoyed the show. Because the creators didn’t try to just recreate the original. Instead, they used parts of the original to reimagine a different version of the story. It’s not a bright, colorful magical-girl adventure aimed at kids anymore. It’s an angsty fantasy teen drama now aimed at people like me and I liked it. 

Worst Parts

Things that cause me annoyance or anger:

  • Almost all the characters who are teenagers don’t look like teenagers. This is a common problem in movies and tv shows. It irks me though. The whole thing could have been avoided if they just made this a university instead of a high school. It would have made certain events less questionable if the students were adults. Plus it just fuels unrealistic beauty standards for teenagers, as most of us aren’t that pretty in the teen years and lean towards the awkward side of things. This fact alone cost it a star because it ruined the immersion. 
  • In case I didn’t make myself clear, TECNA IS GONE!! How dare they take away my best girl. I’m still very salty about this. 
  • Bloom’s origin story is a little unnecessarily angsty. She already has enough to deal with, I think we could have turned down the personal woe just a smidge. It was almost a cliche with how dramatically bad it was. 
  • Flora isn’t doesn’t make an appearance in Fate. It’s weird because now there is Terra, a fairy who has similar powers and takes her place in the Winx Club girls. It feels weird to change them. Will we see Flora at all?
  • The last 10 minutes of the final episode. So much happened and then the show left it at a cliffhanger. It left me shook and upset, and then infuriated when the credits rolled without the next episode button. 
  • No spoilers, but characters aren’t necessarily safe in Fate. People die in this one. Which is good for the plot, it just makes me sad, sometimes. 
  • The teen drama gets a little bit cringey at times. 
  • Why would the teachers look the other way and allow a wild kegger to happen?? Like seriously, THESE KIDS ARE TEENAGERS!!! Most of them probably the ages 16-18 and it’s honestly very concerning. Just as an adult why would you allow that to happen at your school?? Especially with kids under 18. Sigh, They really should have just made Alfea a University instead. It would make this less disturbing. 

Best Parts

Little things I appreciate:

  • Musa has great style. I just really liked her fashion and vibes. 
  • Sky is a fantasy world Steve Rodgers. Change my mind. Very blonde, buff, and handsome. He’s also got that chivalrous hero vibe like early Captain America. (I’m talking about a very superficial level here. Steve Rodgers is a far better character and his role in movies is way better)
  • *Mild Spoiler* Stella’s outfit when she meets her mother. It’s a proper and conservative outfit, something you could easily imagine a politician wearing to an event. It’s so different from her normal fashion and creates the scene of putting on a show for appearance’s sake and making an effort for approval. Subtle storytelling is just *mwah chef’s kiss” so satisfying. 
  • The burned ones are creepy in the best way. Can’t have a lame monster lurking about the woods. Being a boogeyman hunting in the shadows takes style. 
  • Fairy Instagram and all the text messages. Modern social media combined with a knockoff Hogwarts is honestly kind of hilarious.  
  • Cheesy teen relationship drama. In a fun way so far. 
  • *Spoiler* Stella and Sky having realistic consequences of a past relationship.
  • The instructors have more complex motivations, backstories, and relationships with other characters than they did in the original. 
  • There are male and female fairies. There are male and female specialists. If you haven’t seen the original series you don’t understand how surprising that is. Men were specialists, fighter boys with no magic. Girls are magical and are either a fairy if good or a witch if evil. It’s a good change. 

*Image does not belong to me. I got it from an article on OtakuKart.com by Vijayalakshmi Devanathan. Fate: The Winx Saga belongs to Netflix