Shadowhunters season 2 has been impressive so far, but tonight’s episode really changed the pace of the show so far this season.
In tonight’s episode, Alec is slowly dying and the only way to help him is to get Jace to him so their parabatai bond can be completed and the missing piece of Alec’s ‘soul’ can return to him. In a race against time, Jace has to get to Alec’s side before the Clave or the werewolf pack can catch him, or else his parabatai will die.
DUN. DUN. DUUUUN!
I have to be honest, I love all the ways this show develops its characters and tonight we got to see some important insight into Alec and Jace meeting as children and becoming parabatai as teens. (It’s worth noting that the casting choices for child and teen Alec, Jace, and Izzy were all absolutely horrible. Child Izzy wasn’t even the same ethnicity as adult Izzy. Also Alec and Jace are supposed to be like 21, right? Why would I’d say 17-18 year old them look so drastically different?) I also really like the smaller but no less important look into Simon’s struggles. We learned about his mother’s alcoholism after his father died and learn something about his life in that way, but we also get to see him trying to deal with Raphael’s determination that he find Camille to the point that he finds Simon’s mom before he does and more or less threatens her safety if Simon doesn’t get on with his search for Camille.
One thing that was also interesting to see was the way that, when her friends are in danger, Clary really comes into her own. She’s, pardon my super nerd-ness here, such a Gryffindor. She’s this tiny ball of, “FIGHT ME!” when it comes to the people she cares about, and I’m especially glad she didn’t turn her back on Simon this season like she did before.
Of course, it can’t be ignored that we finally got to see Maia Roberts, who I’m hoping will become an integral part to the story the further along we go! Such a good character and one I can’t wait to get to know better!
While Clary is trying to find Jace and help Simon, and while Luke is trying to determine whether or not Jace did what the wolves think he did and decide whether or not to let them kill him, and while Simon is dealing with Raphael and his mother, we also have Izzy and Magnus left to try and keep Alec going long enough to get Jace to him all the while dealing with Victor Aldertree hindering their attempts to save Alec’s life because he would rather use Alec as bait for Jace than actually save Alec. Poor Isabelle having to negotiate to try and save her brother’s life is heartbreaking as a sister myself. I know the way she loves her brothers and I think that Emeraude Toubia really delivers on Isabelle’s frustration and fears. Though we see Magnus dealing with trying to keep his boyfriend alive and failing, and we see an equally good performance from Harry Shum Jr. in doing so, as well as really pulling off the ‘ancient warlock among mortals who are barely more than children’ vibe. (Side note, the fact he actually tried a ‘sleeping beauty’ as a last ditch attempt was so heartbreaking.)
However, if we’re going to talk about performances, for the first time probably ever, I really have to say hats off to Dom Sherwood as Jace. I’ve been very vocal in the past about how shitty the acting in this TV show is (Love everybody, but they’re bad actors for the most part), but tonight that guy REALLY pulled out all the stops on Jace’s struggle to get to his brother and save his life. There was one scene where he’s cornered and literally begs someone to let him save Alec and the they can kill him (no spoilers so won’t say who!) and the exhaustion and the fear and the pain is seriously delivered in that scene. It’s honestly one of the better acted moments I’ve seen on this show. Also, there was a serious, “IT’S ALLERGIES, GODDAMN IT!” moment near the end that I can’t say what happens without major spoilers, but oh wow was his performance painful.
Tonight’s episode was a great change of pace from the last few where the focus was on Valentine only, and I honestly was glad for the reprieve from Valentine’s icky bad guy presence. This episode was about family and love and the lengths anyone, Nephilim, Mundane, or Downworlder, would go to to protect the people they love. I really liked tonight’s episode and I can’t wait for next week!
What did you guys think? Did you like it? Did you feel all the feels? Is anybody else wondering about whether or not the Clave will try to arrest Magnus for what he did to Raj? Let me know in the comments!