‘Wizards vs Aliens’: ’100 Wizards: Part One’ spoiler-free review

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CBBC’s fantasy adventure series from former Doctor Who showrunner Russell T Davies and The Sarah Jane Adventures co-creator Phil Ford returns this month.

Very quickly we’re reintroduced to the themes, characters and the threat involved in Wizards Vs Aliens as schoolboys Tom and Benny (the wizard and scientist respectively) save some wizards from the fate of aliens The Nekross, who are at war with the magical ones.

After this reminder, and more reintroductions to Tom’s family and friends – plus the Nekross themselves (where we discover all is not well on their home world, news courtesy of new character Chancellor Kooth) – we’re plunged into the discovery of a new wizard, Chloe Martin, who’s been showing off her talents in full public view on the streets. And it’s not long before she’s an internet sensation.

But poor Chloe isn’t aware she’s a wizard, thinking instead that she’s telekinetic, and seems intent on becoming famous. “It’s like I’m Katy Perry!” she coos excitedly as Channel Hex sign her up for her own show – which attracts interest from fellow wizards and some interest from aliens. Writer Ford is admirably taking on the X Factor generation’s insatiable need for fame and the price they pay for inviting the world in to their lives.

Interestingly, we get to meet more new wizards: charming Nathaniel Nightjar, played by Cyril Nri (familiar to SJA fans as The Shopkeeper), and the less than charming Miranda Fisher, played so well by Rosie Cavaliero (A Young Doctor’s Notebook). Also look out for I’d Do Anything star Jodie Prenger, who’s on top form as Chloe’s guardian, the pushy and enthusiastic Mrs Meeks.

The regular cast are all at their usual best whilst newcomer Jessica Plummer (Chloe) does a cracking job of the orphaned teen (a trait that her new friend Tom sympathises with greatly). It would seem Tom’s previous girl chum Katy has competition.

Whilst not at the heights of the some of the brilliant episodes last year (and some of the amazing stories to come later in this series), Series 2 kicks off with much confidence, sparkly performances and a huge sense of fun – the perfect tonic for an autumn Monday afternoon!

Airs at 5pm on Monday 28 October 2013 on CBBC.

> Buy Series 1 on DVD on Amazon.

Are you looking forward to Series 2? Let us know below…