Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 10: “By the Light of Dawn”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 10: “By the Light of Dawn”
Grade: A-

The mid-season finale of Shadowhunters season two surpassed most of its preceding episodes and becoming the highest graded episode from me thus far. As an episode of a television show, it was great; but from a fan of the books, it was less great. With major changes in the way things unfolded in the second book, the midseason finale focused entirely on the “activation” of the Soul Sword (not in the books) but gave a lot of familiar moments from the book that made the episode work really well.

There was only one thing, one major thing, that bothered me. I believe it to be a plot hole (though some have argued that it’s not, which I’ll get into) that Jace is thought to be able to destroy the sword by touching it. Or at least, a strange oversight that no one remembered Jace already having touched the sword during his interrogation with Aldertree. Some have pointed out that it needed to be activated for Jace to destroy it (which wouldn’t make any sense because Clary (or Jace because he has angel blood, not demon blood, it turns out) would’ve had to touch it first, and Jace didn’t have her touch it first) or that Jace would need the same power to activate it as he would to destroy it, a lightning bolt or the Institute’s angelic power. That is a possibility, however it’s never stated in the show? And if it was, a whole lot of people missed it since at the end, we see a possible Sebastian having taken the sword and many pointed out he was wearing gloves to prove that he could touch it without destroying it. The whole thing is a mess, either way. The show either confused its audience with too many “rules” to a show-based device or it made a large mistake—it distracted me the whole episode because it didn’t make any sense for Jace to believe he could destroy it.

Other than that, the episode was the best of the show. Even with the disaster of the sword plot that wasn’t in the books, all the pieces and characters worked well and I was genuinely invested in the downworlders and the potential of them all being killed. Most importantly, there were moments from the book that remained and it made the show feel more like the story so many love.


tells Isabelle that he isn’t interested in having sex with her, or anyone, and has always been that way. If that’s Raphael coming out as asexual, I’m thrilled to have some inclusion on the show for asexual people, because that’s super rare. I’ve heard that it’s sort of hinted at in the books and I’m excited that they’ve decided to include it in the show. I’m not asexual myself, so I don’t know how well they are handling it so far, but I hope they’re able to make the character a good representation of the ace community.


The moment with Simon and Jace
is a big part of the book. It’s one of the moments I was looking forward to. Simon is dying and he drinks Jace’s blood to survive, tackles him and drinks from his neck and then they continue to go find Clary. But in the show, it’s Jace using that damn shapeshifting rune to look like Clary to have Simon feed from his arm. Apparently, too homoerotic for the show—Magnus and Alec are enough. But this was one of many moments from the books that made it in, even if slightly warped, and that made the episode feel more like the books even if the overall plot of the episode was nothing like the book.

The end of book two,
besides the epilogue, ends with the characters in the back of a truck on its way back to land from the ship that was destroyed by Clary (don’t even get me started, they easily could’ve put all this in the show) and Simon needs to get back before the sun rises. It’s an intense end, the clock ticking and the sun rising and Simon could die. But he doesn’t! Because he drank Jace’s blood and he now has some angel in him and can now step into the sunlight. This moment was dropped for Simon being in the Institute and forgetting that it was morning and he jumps back from the light coming in through the window but he isn’t burned. Simon and Clary go outside and are all excited, Jace is jealous, and that’s how they ended the episode. It just so underwhelming, that moment they realize he’s the Daylighter is big in the books. And it didn’t seem like that big of a deal in the show. However, most of these moments that they’re bringing into the show have to be changed slightly because of the plot changes, which are understandable, just disappointing.


Too much tech
is destroying the story. I don’t know how much any of the technology used in the show is in the books, but I’m just getting tired of it. The story is fantasy based, the books are so much more intricate with magic and the show is being bogged down by technology. All the computers of the Institute, Aldertree turning into a hacker at a random to get into the wherever the “angelic power” was located for the Institute. It’s all too much.


Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 9: “Bound by Blood”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 9: “Bound by Blood”
Grade: C+

In the ninth episode of the second season, Shadowhunters dips back down in quality—or at least, I just think the episode didn’t work. From the cliche set of a creepy carnival to an annoying plot, the newest episode wasn’t my favorite of this season. This is the worst grade I’ve given an episode of Shadowhunters season 2.

Though the episode have an interesting premise: Clary’s hand becomes charred and mangled, spreading over her arm—it’s a countdown for Clary to find Madzie, being bound by her oath to the warlock Iris. Both Jace and Simon help her, eventually achiving their goal until Madzie turns against them and Simon is kidnapped by Valentine. Meanwhile, Maia and many other downworlders, knowing Clary has the power to activate (ugh, that word) the sword that would kill all downworlders, want Clary dead.


Clary’s favor
for Iris and the awful charring hand spell was interesting. This specific plotline worked really well going through the episode. I loved the curse of her hand being charred, growing closer to her chest and heart. It gave the episode an immediacy and pace that worked nice, however Clary does little of the action which annoyed me. Some of the elements to this didn’t quite work for me (Jace meeting with Valentine in the restaurant, Clary almost dying (I never like main character almost-deaths because we know they aren’t going to die), and the worst part about it (which made it below in its own lowlight section) how quickly the favor being (not) completed fixed her hand. Other than that, I liked the premise. It could’ve been a great side episode that didn’t need Valentine involved at all—or less involved. I’m just not a fan of how they’re going about the adapting of the books. There’s a good way of doing it (following the plot of the books in most episodes, having fun side episodes that play with the characters) and a bad way (the way Shadowhunters is doing it.)


The oath not really being completed
bothered me greatly. Why did the spell break after Madzie was returned to Clary, and not Iris? Immediately after, Madzie stole Clary away and she was back in Valentine’s clutches, so Iris still doesn’t have Madzie and so Clary should have her hand still charred up until she’s returned to Iris. You’d think that Iris would’ve made the binding spell a little more specific? Like, “find Madzie” could’ve been done by Clary knowing she’s with Valentine and that’s it, spell broken. Iris still didn’t have her, so technically Clary failed to return her safely to Iris, so why is the favor supposedly done?

Carnival theme
was just weird and annoying. It’s like they went, “What’s a creepy, overused motif that is shown over and over again with supernatural/urban fantasy/horror films? Carnival! For no reason! Great!” Like, not necessary. It added nothing. I get that they had Valentine want Madzie to enjoy her time with him, but, like, a lot of ice cream could’ve done that. Relocating your entire evil lair and science experiment creatures for that sole reason was stupid.

wanting to kill Clary made sense in the episode, but felt out of place for the character. Maia being locked up and escaping didn’t really go anywhere, her claustrophobia wasn’t really explored at all, even after she said that Luke “knew what she’d been through” to have it. And how did she even escape? How was that so easy? I don’t get any of it. As much as I love Maia, her role in this episode was useless.

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 7: “How Are Thou Fallen”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 7: “How Are Thou Fallen”
Grade: B+

Now with the seventh episode, the second season of Shadowhunters has continued on a fairly solid streak of good episodes. “How Are Thou Fallen” begins with Cleophas showing up at Valentine’s lair to tell him about Clary’s ability to create new runes, though he doesn’t believe her, and she ends up looking for Clary and Luke, trying to win them over and bring Clary—who has been hearing strange, loud noises that only she can hear—to her father. When Cleophas learns of Clary hearing the noise she recognizes it as a call of an angel, having been captured and tortured by Valentine, it changes her opinion of Valentine and she wants to help Clary.

Meanwhile, Simon and Maia go on their first date—after Simon gets some terrible advice from Jace about being more suave—and Alec wants to take his relationship to the next level with Magnus. Isabelle has become desperate for more yin fen and goes to great lengths to get some. Overall, the episode is a really good episode when looked at solely from the perspective of the show, and even though it has some great moments I’ve been wanting from the books…plot-wise, it’s a mess. It’s like they’re stretching book two over the stories of book one (in season one) and book three (now in season two)—with elements from the others, too—and creating a bit of a mess.


being such a supporter up until she realizes that he has an angel captured and torturing it, is a great arc for her character. Though completely derailing from the books, I like her as a character and having her a part of this portion of the story seems coherent and is working well.

Jace and Simon
scenes in the bar were hilarious and what I’ve been waiting for. Jace was finally like in the books with his attitude and Simon is always one of the best parts of the show. The whole story of Simon trying to change for Maia was really solid.


With Isabelle and yin fen,
I still don’t know where they are going or how she’ll get out of this one. With Magnus now confirming that it’s made of vampire venom and not from a demon like in The Infernal Devices, even mentioning Jem, I’m not sure how to feel about how they’re handling yin fen—though I’m enjoying the storyline for Isabelle.


was just an old man. His wings were just…standard angel wings. The way the angels were described in the book were so beautiful, and Ithuriel himself was described so more golden and mythical and younger. It just sort of didn’t do it for me. The entire scene in general—in the books during City of Glass, the third book—was so incredible and it just didn’t live up to it at all. I’m not sure where they are going to go with it from here.

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 6: “Iron Sisters”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 6: “Iron Sisters”
Grade: B

In the sixth episode of the new season, “Iron Sisters” takes Clary and Isabelle to Citadel of the Iron Sisters, the Shadowhunters who make the angelic weapons, on a mission to find information in defeating Valentine—with Aldertree using Isabelle’s new addiction to yin fen as incentive to spy on Clary while there. Meanwhile, with Luke gone battling with his grief after Jocelyn’s death by full on wolfing out, Simon and Maia go in search for him, and Magnus and Alec go on their official first date.

Overall, the episode wasn’t quite as good as the previous episode, though the show is still on the right track. Everything is improving, especially in comparison to the first season, but I’m still questioning some plot decisions they are making and hoping it all comes together.


Simon and Maia
have some great, funny scenes in this episode. I like their chemistry and can see things starting to happen, which gets me excited. I love the actress who plays Maia and I love Maia in general, so having more time with her is great. And Simon is always funny, so this storyline worked well for some comedic relief and emotional scenes with Simon trying to calm down Luke—though I’m still unconvinced that Luke acting the way he is via wolf form is like in the books, it just seems like odd behavior for wolves to struggle with emotions like that and not be able to control their hunger/anger. Luke was hangry and I don’t get it.


The Iron Sisters
were nothing like I pictured. I wish they hadn’t shown up here so early in the show, but I get how the writers want to show the world as much as possible to build a greater picture of the world. But I didn’t hate how the Sisters were depicted, it was just different. Having Cleophas be Luke’s sister and not mother didn’t really do much for me because I don’t remember her from the books, though I did instantly find it strange because I knew about Amatis, so that confused me. Overall, I liked a lot of the Citadel and the test they had to pass in order to enter—though thought it was silly they needed to change into white dresses for it—but the Iron Sisters were kind of…meh. That’s done, moving on.

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 5: “Dust and Shadows”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 5: “Dust and Shadows”
Grade: B+

In the fifth episode of the second season, Shadowhunters almost completely steps away from the books and…I didn’t hate it? With Jocelyn now dead, and this episode revolving around Clary dealing with her death, the show is definitely not like the books at all in this episode, however it worked. This is the kind of episode I’ve wanted from the show—if it’s going to derail from the books, it better be good, and this episode was good.

Clary, with the help of Alec, goes to a sketchy warlock that will help her revive her mother using dark magic; Isabelle struggles with the wound that won’t heal which she received in the previous episode, being given yin fen, a powerful and addictive demon drug (strangely placed here where it should be living in the prequel trilogy The Infernal Devices set in the Victorian era) that helps her shoulder heal though its addictive qualities seem to be taking effect on her; and Simon struggles to hide his vampire ways after moving back in with his mom and sister, eventually revealing the truth.

Overall, the episode was good. The only storyline that followed the books was Simon’s, which was handled well and worked perfectly. The rest of the episode, doesn’t follow the books at all and I still enjoyed it because of three reasons: the writing is so much better now, the episode was done well, and the storylines they followed were interesting with emotional moments that worked. Also the acting has improved tenfold from season one—probably thanks to better writing.


Clary going to the warlock
Iris Rouse was an interesting arc that I truly believe Clary, as a character from the books, would do. If Jocelyn had died in the books around that time, I think Clary would try to find a warlock to bring her mother back and it would go completely wrong. The actress playing Iris Rouse was fantastic, the moments with the little girl and the bird were great, and the demon—the demon was actually terrifying and the effects (looked all practical) were incredible.

Simon’s story
with telling his mom about being a vampire is really a heartbreaking part of the books. I’m excited to see where they go from where they left off—Simon drinking the blood from a literal rat in his room—and hope the emotion lands with his mother’s reaction. So far I like what they’ve built up to.

The funeral
scene was surprisingly emotional and beautiful. Clary breaking down was well-acted and made me cry, and Jace comforting her was a great moment. And I loved that they kept them being all in white for mourning and even though Jocelyn’s death is so unlike the books, I understand what they’re doing and I’m on board.


Yin fen
being introduced here seems strange. I associate the drug with Jem from The Infernal Devices exclusively, so having it show up now is strange. However, I do like the idea of it—and the way they shot it, the immediate effect it had on her was cool—and having Isabelle use it to help cope with her shoulder and possibly deal with an addiction storyline for her could be interesting, as long as its handled well and doesn’t come off too cheesy.


What’s with Aldertree?
I’m confused with him—what’s his deal? I know he’s part of the Clave and the Clave has issues but. What’s his motive? Is he a good guy? A bad guy? In between? Just a foil for the main characters plans? Does he want to sleep with Isabelle now because I definitely got a vibe during the yin fen scene? He’s just bothering me. He’s also good looking and has accent so he can stay, I’m just saying, what’s up, dude? Why?

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 4: “Day of Wrath”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 4: “Day of Wrath”
Grade: B+

The fourth episode of Shadowhunters season two was good! I genuinely enjoyed the episode—it was the best of the season thus far. Maybe of the whole show—actually, by giving it a B+ it’s the highest grade I’ve given to the show for both seasons, so it’s the best of the whole show. In the episode, while Jace is locked up in the City of Bones awaiting his trial, a possession demon makes its way into the Insititute and puts all the Shadowhunters there in danger. As it kills three—including one shocking death (SPOILERS—Clary’s mother)—Aldertree tortures Raphael in order to find Camille, leading him, Simon, and Magnus to retrieve her and hand her over to the Clave.


was so much better in this episode it was evident that this is the episode where the change in writers happened—and it did, because “Day of Wrath” was written by someone who hasn’t yet been credited for an episode. The difference was what made most of this episode not just tolerable but actually enjoyable.

The overall
story of the episode worked really well. The demon that possesses people getting into the Institute was interesting, all the characters in immediate danger and several dying—with an actual shocking death! This episode had all the pieces and arcs and emotion of a well-developed show.


Jocelyn bites the dust
and I have to say, I’m not that upset over it. Jocelyn is kidnapped in the first book and remains in a coma until midway through the third (I think, it’s been a while). And after that, after giving all the information she needs to Clary about her brother, she sort of becomes…just there. She marries Luke, fights in some battles. That’s all I remember from Jocelyn. And of course it would be great to have had Jocelyn there until the end, but now that she’s done her part, and because I wasn’t the biggest fan of the actress playing her, I’m cool. It was a shocking moment, which would make it a highlight—but it’s also a huge change from the books, which would make it a lowlight. And since my feelings about it are meh, here it stays.


Izzy playing forensic scientist
was fun in the first season, another one of those strange changes that I just went, “Sure, why not?” in season one. But now that it’s been so long without her blue gloves and science talk, I laughed out lout when she returned. Just completely unnecessary and weird. A lot of how the Shadowhunters work and the Institute are just completely opposite of how I imagined in the books and it’s bothersome.

is just—couldn’t we have recast the part for the second season? Or just get rid of her all together? And how lame was that actual cell as a trap for her? Couldn’t have been more magical? I get that connection to earlier in the episode, Aldertree using similar metal cuffs to hold Raphael, but…laaame.

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 3: “Parabatai Lost”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 3: “Parabatai Lost”
Grade: B

With the third episode of the season two, Shadowhunters is much better than the first season—though still miles away from being spectacular. In the episode, after Alec had used the stone to track his Parabatai bond with Jace to find him and slipped too far in the last episode, Magnus tries everything to save him while Jace tries everything to get back to the Institute to save him—but he can’t return, as he’s wanted by the new head of the Institute for being a “traitor” and working with Valentine. Meanwhile, Clary helps Simon find his worried mother who hasn’t heard from him in weeks since turning into a vampire. And Maia has arrived to the show, thwarting Jace’s plans to get home after she and the other werewolves believes that Jace had killed the werewolf Valentine kidnapped.

Overall, this episode was great. The dialogue and writing still needs work—and the direction the show is going in needs a good course correction—but this episode worked well enough with all the other pieces, like the acting and effects, that it is so far the best episode of the season. Most of all, Maia is awesome and nothing else really mattered to me.


has arrived and she’s awesome. Her scenes were great, the actress playing her (Alisha Wainwright) is fantastic, and I’m really excited she’s finally a part of the show! Also, that scene of her chasing Jace down through that alley looked incredible, it was so cool.

The episode
was directed by Gregory Smith, an actor I’ve been a fan of for a while, and that was exciting to find out, especially after liking the episode so much. The effects are a thousand times better than they had been in the first season (that werewolf transformation was A+ though I think the glowing green eyes thing could’ve died in season one) and the show is looking better—the only real problem now is the writing.

responses and acting were great in this episode! Izzy worried about her brother, Magnus trying everything to save Alec, Clary being there for Simon, Simon and his mother, and Jace returning and saving Alec—what a scene that was, so well-acted and emotional!


The writing,
oh the writing, is still upsetting me. It’s the only downfall. The characters making stupid decisions, the dialogue being ridiculous, and the overall direction of where the show is going is troubling. (Jace finding the dead werewolf on the beach with him and his first though after someone sees them is to say, “It’s not what it looks like.” He doesn’t pretend to be a fellow victim “Please help us! I’m also injured!” and go along with it??? It’s just ridiculous. And that’s not the only example. If it was to get Luke involved, it was unnecessary as Jace then goes to a bar run by werewolves by accident and meets Maia—which then involves Luke after the fight. The beach lines were completely unnecessary and just awful and stupid.) The show needs an overhaul. I don’t know when the new writers take over (or if that’s just a rumor I heard), but I hope it’s soon and I hope they have a better plan—and are better with dialogue.

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 2: “A Door Into the Dark”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 2: “A Door Into the Dark”
Grade: B-

Shadowhunters second episode of season two picks up where they left off in the premiere: Clary is upset after her mother attempted to kill Jace—who she believes is a demonic evil experiment baby because of the demon blood Valentine injected her with while pregnant—and because Alec blames Clary for Jace having been taken. She feels unwelcome and misses her old life, so she visits the art school she’d been wanting to go to, is kidnapped by a still-alive Dot being forced to work for Valentine, and attempts an escape with Jace. Meanwhile, the vampires want Camille and Simon is tasked to find her as the only vampire left having been Turned by her, so he and Magnus search for her.

The episode was fine. The same complaints, the same frustrations—but at least everything looks better this season. Overall it wasn’t a terrible episode but I just want to be wowed with this series. I want the same feeling I had when reading the books to capture me, fall in love. But I’m still at a point where I’m watching out of obligation, hope dwindling.


fighting that boxing club guy was awesome. The fight scenes in general are all getting so much better. Also just Isabelle in general is really great and cares so much for the people around her and fights for them. She’s definitely a constant highlight throughout the entire series.


Simon looking for Camille
sort of feels like they’re just trying to find something for Simon to be doing while the main story is continuing on. Simon has a lot of good stuff coming—like telling his mom he’s a vampire, becoming the Daylighter, etc.—but none of that is happening yet so they have him involved in some ridiculous turf war with the werewolves, hanging out in the old boat warehouse, and searching for Camille—for what reason, must have missed because it doesn’t seem that important. I think sometimes it’s okay to just have Simon be there as a friend to Clary, hanging out with Luke, and that’s it. He doesn’t have to have his own story in every single episode.

as always. There were a few good emotional scenes that were written well, the funny lines are funny, but the in between lines are just bland.

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 1: “This Guilty Blood”

Shadowhunters – Season 2, Episode 1: “This Guilty Blood”
Grade: B-

Season two of Shadowhunters has aired and I have mixed feelings. But I have more positive thoughts on the show than I did last season. I gave the premiere episode a B for three reasons: the look of the show has improved; the effects look incredible compared to last season; the acting is more solid. The writing is still not great and the differences from the books are still bothering me mostly because they seem to be changing things for no reason. However, I’m still holding out because I’ve heard the writers will be different (starting around episode four?), so we’re still working with the season one writers. This means: the decisions they are making right now are still going with season one and if they are planning to go along with the books more this season, there will need to be a transition period to do so. There is still time to change course to follow the books more closely. (But I also realize that they’re creating a TV show, which will have twenty episodes this season, and it will likely not follow the books perfectly, adding stories and such, however the way they’re going is drastically different and conflicting with plot lines in the books. Which is a problem.)

The episode follows Jace trying to escape/kill Valentine on the ship while Clary and the others at the Institute try to find him, though a new Institute leader comes in and halts the search in order to investigate what had happened. Afterward, the rescue mission turns into a man hunt for Jace as the new leader, Aldertree, declares him a traitor and wants him dead or alive. Clary and the others do their best to prevent it.

Overall the episode was good, mostly because of the improvements in comparison to last season, however the show still has its issues of subpar dialogue and weird changes in plot and rules of the magic that made much more sense in the books.


The visual effects
had me screaming with joy. The fight scenes were great and no longer had those weird fast motion blurs, the seraph blades look more like blades now that light up and not like lightsabers, the portals look incredible and are no longer purple, and the vampires dying still look similar but are more well done. All around, visually the show looks much better.

is still a great character, the actor is amazing, and he usually has incredible lines (with the exception of this episode, which had few). In this episode, he had hands down, the best line of the show so far: when Simon and Clary are running to find Jocelyn by tracking her by cell phone, Simon says that they’re close, and Clary says “Then run faster!” and Simon replies with, “I’m a vampire. I’m running slow for you.”


Shapeshifting rune
still exists and it’s stupid and it’s causing so many plot holes. They should just pretend it never existed and move on and ignore continuity issues later because IT ALREADY HAS CONTINUITY ISSUES.

is still kind of awful and amateur sounding and cliche and obvious and annoying. Like, at times, worse than last season. Hoping in a few episodes when they change writers it will get way way way better because right now it’s one of the things keeping me from LOVING the show instead of just liking/tolerating it.

Shadowhunters – Season 1

Shadowhunters – Season 1
Grade Average: C+

After a less-than-great start, a rocky middle with good episodes and bad, Shadowhunters ended on a great episode with a finale that had everything I’d wanted for the show at the start. If it would have started on the same level of what the finale had, the show would have been incredible. I can’t even imagine what the show could’ve built up to if that had been the case. However, that wasn’t the case—the season just wasn’t the best. On average, it scored a C+ from me for the season as a whole (that’s averaging the grades I gave for individual episodes, which I think is a pretty fair outcome). But it consistently became better and better. With my expectations for the future of the show as a whole slightly lowered, and with the finale being genuinely the best episode so far, I’m excited for the second season.

There were several additions to the show that I liked, like the new character Lydia, though with her came a subplot that I didn’t care for—Alec’s engagement to her—but I did enjoy her as a character and hope she’s integrated more in the show, because the actress playing her is great. A lot changes from the book didn’t seem necessary, but a few of them came around in the end for the story they wanted to tell. All that happens in the books happens, just differently from what we know as readers. The route is different, but the end results of the storylines are the same, keeping it fresher for the show’s viewers. Although I wish they’d kept closer to the books, I understand some of the changes.

Mostly, I find it strange that they’re merging plot points from the first four books into the first season—Camille being introduced far later than in the show and Alec and Magnus’s discussion of their mortality/immortality because of her first appearance in The Mortal Instruments’ fourth book comes much sooner than needed, as they haven’t even started dating yet. It seems like they’re using the second book as more of a bridge, ending fairly close to what happens in the middle of the second book, on the ship with Valentine. One major change I feel was necessary, was bringing Jocelyn out of her coma early. It wouldn’t have made sense to keep her in that magical coma for almost three seasons if it had followed a season one = book one, season two = book two, season three = book three, etc. which makes the first season have much more of an arc.

What I predict for the second season is that it’s going to use the end of the second book as the midpoint of the season, while converging book three’s plot throughout and end the season with the end of the third book. I don’t know their long-game here, because in two seasons that would cover three books. If they were to continue that way, it would mean only a total of four seasons. Of course they have an entire mega-series to work with, but according to Cassandra Clare, they only have the rights to The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices, not being able to touch the rest. Does that mean she won’t sell them the rights if the show is going well? I don’t know. If that were to happen, how would they integrate The Bane Chronicles? Tales From Shadowhunter Academy? The Dark Artifices? The other two trilogies Clare has planned? I don’t know. I just hope they don’t chomp through too much plot and are left to create their own storylines after the sixth book’s story has been used up.


Lydia Branwell’s
introduction had me weirded out at first. I thought an additional character wasn’t needed, but she quickly became interesting and the actress playing her, Stephanie Bennett, is great. I didn’t like the Alec and Lydia pairing or the entire wedding subplot at all, but it ended up well, and with Lydia being so kind and understanding to Alec made me like her even more. I hope she’s in future episodes.

Acting by Alberto Rosende
was consistently great and really carried the show in the first half of the season when it was at its worst. Simon is a highlight of the book series and I’m thrilled he’s just as much a highlight in the show.

Effects improvement
was definitely noticeable. I do wish the portals looked cooler (which didn’t change at all during the season) and that there was some consistency with runes, but for the most part, there was definite improvement (or I just got used to it, which might have happened). In the finale, Valentine communicating with the ring looked okay, but after taking the ring off, the effects of him disappearing looked great. Magnus’s magic looks great. But again, those portals are abysmal. The fight scenes also improved tremendously, the first few edited terribly to a point where you didn’t know what was going on.

Episodes ten and thirteen,
“This World Inverted” and the finale were the best of the season. “This World Inverted” was hilarious and worked really well, while the finale brought everything together and raised the bar for the show’s level of greatness.


Strange changes
that were just unnecessary and could potentially create plot holes for future events (though they could be working on that and doing it on purpose) and created straight up plot holes all season, just making decisions that didn’t make sense for what was already set up in a previous episode.

Tim Burton’s Through the Looking Glass
promotion during “This World Inverted” just felt weird. It made me uncomfortable. I loved that episode a whole lot, but it felt like a lot of it was written just to make that promotional deal? It very well could have been an “Oh! Your episode reminds us of our movie. Let’s do a fun promo!” but it just felt weird to include Alice in Wonderland into the actual episode.

Kat McNamara’s
acting was so inconsistent. I like her as Clary and she has some shining moments, and is fairly fine throughout, but there are moments that are so terrible I don’t understand how they left it in, how they didn’t have her do the scene again. I hope that improves going forward.

is played really well by Harry Shum Jr, but I’m saddened that his character is being written too unlike book-Magnus for my liking. Magnus is my favorite character—a lot of people’s favorite character—and I’m disappointed in how they’re writing him, making him feel harsher (especially in the first few episodes) and not as fun as he is in the books. Though again, Harry Shum Jr. is doing great.

Valentine in every scene
in the first few episodes was a terrible decision. Instead of being afraid of him, we saw almost every moment of him being in Chernobyl—another odd choice—and it just didn’t work for the story. Less is more, and we got too much of him, making him showing up in the later half of the season less exciting.