Some shows require more than a few episodes to find their voice and Shadowhunters proved to be one of these shows. Following the disastrous review that the series received from its first few episodes, it was only fair to give it another go. Everybody has to be allowed room for improvement.
With the CGI remaining semi-horrible and McNamara failing to match the drastic amelioration of the rest of the cast, Shadowhunters managed to pull a surprising comeback at its midseason. It was clear that the cast got comfortable in their role. They were very much in line with the essence of the characters from the book, which made the deviations [the show took] work.
Alberto Rosende deserves a considerable amount of praise for his consistency in the portrayal of Simon. Similarly, Harry Shum Jr. as Magnus Bane highlights every scene he is in. Needless to say that Malec (Magnus + Alec) steals the show’s romantic arc, proving to be a million times more interesting than the main act. Matthew Daddario and Emeraude Toubia offer some beautiful brother-sister scenes, embracing the relationship between Alec and Isabelle. The pool of new characters introduced heightens the show – something that it desperately needed. Isaiah Mustafah gets some well-deserved screen time, where he is allowed to expand on Luke’s character. Lastly, the simple fact that they decreased the amount of white powder on Raphael’s face turned him into a more believable character. One no longer laughs at him but with him.
One major issue that the show struggles with – foreseen to be carried to the future – is the lack of credibility of the main character. Since everything we seem to be able to focus on is Clary’s heavy sighs and flaring nostrils, it takes away from paying attention to the scene. It is uncertain whether McNamara cannot act or whether she has a wrong interpretation of Clary. She overacts practically every scene and viewers have a difficult time sympathizing with her character. Along with her is Dominic Sherwood.
The ambiguity in Dominic Sherwood’s acting is that it is fine when he is around everybody but McNamara/Clary – it is unsure whether her acting brings him down. However, he has been growing very steadily as the show progresses.
Shadowhunters owes its thank yous to the concept creators – the storyline is interesting enough to pull viewers in for a second season. The same cannot be said for whoever writes the dialogues for it is lacking in far too many ways than I can count. Aside from the few exceptions, the lines usually fall flat.
Q U I C K • C E N T S
b r i e f • s u m m a r y
Special people with a magical pen run around NYC looking for a cup. Laced with drama, betrayal, attempted romance, and mediocre acting.
t h e • g o o d
Major improvement from most of the characters
Interesting direction to the show
Keeps you interested enough to be around for Season 2
t h e • b a d
McNamara still cannot act
The CGI remains bad
The show is still soapy and cheesy
p r o g r e s s
f o l l o w • u p
Yes, with great difficulty.
f i n a l • t h o u g h t s
It gets better if you can get past everything that’s wrong.