Shadowhunters has certainly stepped up in this episode and possibly delivered one of the best episodes of the series so far. But as usual, there are always some flaws.
Last week we saw quite a few cringe-worthy moments—from the baby Sebastian killing flowers flashback to introducing yet another tracking method into the show, along with the usual cheesy or overly explanatory dialogue and odd camerawork. But this week the show seemed better, which is interesting because Shadowhunters is scheduled to change writers starting next week and it feels like they’ve only just found their footing.
The episode opens with a flashback scene starring young Alec and Jace, as Alec is still suffering the effects of the Adamas stone from the previous episode. Despite past Shadowhunters flashbacks, this one seemed to work. The young actors may not have been the best, but the dialogue reflected the character’s well and these kids actually looked a little like their older selves. The Alec-Jace flashbacks continue throughout the episode, and for some bizarre reason, they choose to use a different set of actors who look to be about 16.
Why is this odd? Well towards the end of the episode we see the Parabatai ritual with the two older actors. The ritual can be taken up until the age of 19, but Jace and Alec became Parabatai not long after they met. It felt rather unnecessary and a little confusing to use different actors when the younger versions could have been used. Also, Izzy’s younger self didn’t look right. It feels like they didn’t try very hard to find someone who looked like Emeraude.
Jace washes up on a beach after jumping off Valentine’s ship with Clary and without his stele, the Mundanes see him! They assume he has killed the werewolf girl who washed up on the shore with him—funny that Clary and Jace got separated, but the dead werewolf ended up at the same place as him.
With the Clave hot on Jace’s tail, he heads to the Hunter’s Moon to call Izzy. We also get to see a not very realistic set, anyone want to work at Any Product Inc? It is here we meet Maia, who works as a bartender. Maia’s character was introduced in City of Ashes and she becomes quite prominent throughout the books. Visually, she fits Maia’s description and as for her dialogue so far, she has the sass and the anger of her book counterpart. What was Jace thinking heading to a Downworlder’s bar… He quickly ends up in a fight and now has the werewolves after him too.
Meanwhile, Magnus is trying to help save Alec and feels quite frustrated with himself that his magic can’t help. What about the Silent Brothers? With it being runic-based magic, wouldn’t they be able to help? Magnus has a few run-ins with Jocelyn, Aldertree and a Shadowhunter named Raj (please don’t come back).
Jace ends up in a mundie hospital where they discover he has unusual blood. Luke and Maia soon track him to the hospital and the two go about searching for him. Maia is the first to track him down and she decides to shift. This is possibly one of the best changes in the show. We knew there would be special effects changes, but making the werewolf transformation more gruesome and painful was certainly excellent to see.
As they continue to save Alec, he is moved to Magnus’ apartment. It seems as though he tries to wake Alec with a kiss, which seemed sweet if not a little cheesy. Izzy finds Jace and brings him to the apartment where we see Jace speak the words of the Parabatai ritual along with the flashback of their ritual together. He brings Alec back, but Jace is soon taken by Aldertree and the Clave.
The highlights of the episode would have to be Maia shifting and Shadowhunters finally creating an emotional scene where it felt raw and genuine, rather than cheesy.
Shadowhunters returns next week with ‘Day of Wrath’ where the Institute is infiltrated once again, Hodge returns and there appears to be a Lucelyn kiss!