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‘Shadowhunters’ Review: The Devil’s in the Missing Details

(Freeform/Ian Watson)

Well that turned out to be anticlimactic.

(No pun intended).

This season of Shadowhunters started out great. And it still has its fantastic moments.

But these last few episodes have been a disappointment.

“Love is a Devil” had the right ingredients for a big episode. Everyone gathered at Magnus’ to celebrate Max. Maryse being there upped the tension, not just for Magnus and Alec, but for Jace.

Simon and Clary arrived with a change in relationship status. Their (sort of) exes were on hand to witness the moment. Izzy’s struggling to hide her addiction. Valentine kidnapped a child to force a warlock to ruin everything.

All those elements should have created a perfect storm for an emotionally charged hour. Instead, we were given plot over character (again), and left with a confusing mess that made little sense.

(Freeform/Ian Watson)

Not to mention we were denied Alec and Magnus’ first time together. After stressing what a big deal it was for Alec, we were left with fade to black, and then random conversations that seemed to confirm sex happened.

WTF, show? It’s not fair to give the audience a great buildup and just leave them hanging. And as much as I want to give the show the benefit of the doubt, it’s hard not to assume it’s because they’re two men.

It’s not like the show shies away from showing sex. We saw Jace and the random woman in the same episode last week! Alec and Magnus have one of the best stories on the show. Stop skipping over the big moments. Be better than that.

(Freeform/John Medland)

Raphael returned to save Izzy from his vampire crew. And maybe finally get the story he deserves. She convinced him, not once, but twice, to share his venom with her. It turns out venom directly from the fangs is even more potent, and so is Shadowhunter blood to vampires.

I don’t know if this is going to turn into a romance (the chemistry is definitely there), but I enjoy seeing these two together. Raphael reminds me a lot of Magnus, which makes sense since Magnus mentored him. But the difference is Raphael continues to be more open to being seduced by the dark side—something Izzy used to her advantage.

Izzy also admitted that she’s not as strong as everyone thinks she is. I love seeing her vulnerability (even if it comes with the addiction I hate). She needs help sometimes, too. I’m sure her brothers will be more than happy to provide it once they learn what’s going on. They’re already trying to protect her when it comes to their parents’ marriage issues.

(Freeform/Ian Watson)

Maryse saw the error of her ways after she realized she’d passed her bad traits onto Max. As horrible as it was to watch him judging Jace, at least it brought the family back together again.

Now we just need to get rid of Aldertree, reinstate Jace as a Shadowhunter, and stop coming up with ridiculous reasons to keep everyone from working together.

(Easier said than done, I know).

To Simon’s surprise, Clary reacted favorably to his declaration of love (I pouted through the entire scene). They arrived at the party as a couple, and then Simon kissed Maia right in front of her! Except, unfortunately, he didn’t. That was just part of the hallucinating spell people began to fall under one by one.

(Freeform/Ian Watson)

Clary saw Simon kissing Maia. Jace saw Maryse trying to kill him. Alec heard Clary taunting him to the point he nearly jumped off the roof.

Watching it made little sense. If Clary was hallucinating Simon and Maia, why was she able to see what Alec was doing clearly?

It wasn’t hard to guess that Iris (the warlock that tried to let a demon impregnate Clary a few episodes back) was behind the incident. Sure enough, as soon as Magnus broke out his spell book to counter the magic, she somehow swiped it. Magnus got the upper hand and sent her to Idris, but the book was gone.

This prompted Clary and Jace to come forward with what they saw in the angel’s vision last week. Putting the pieces together allowed them to deduce Clary’s got pure angel blood in her veins, which means she can wield the soul sword. Now they know why Valentine wants her alive and unharmed.

We’re swiftly approaching the midseason finale. There are way too many storyline threads dangling in the air to assume we’ll have any decent conclusions over the course of the next two episodes. But maybe the writers will surprise us. Stranger things have happened, right?

Anyone else frustrated? Feel free to share your thoughts below.

About the author

Mandy Treccia

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Executive Editor since 2016, formerly as Editorial Director from 2012-2016. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceMandy.