I’m a little late, reviewing these… I wasn’t really planning on it but lately it feels like everyone in this fandom is a little pessimistic about the show when it really doesn’t deserve all the downgrading. If you look at it without wanting it to be exactly like the books it’s pretty great. Really, I couldn’t have asked for a better show.
I do agree that some changes could be made but that’s why it’s season 1. There’s lots of room for improvement in season 2.
So…. Episode 1 🙂
For a pilot, I must say that it’s pretty good. Choosing Monsters by Ruelle as background music for the opening clip was the best choice ever. It sets the tone perfectly. Without seeing the shapeshifter change shape you get the idea of the man being a monster.
This I really loved! *Applauds for the Special Effects people*
Other than having the runes applied like tattoos and be bold and black on the skin, they are hidden away mostly and more of a “healed scar” type of color.
Best thing yet, they don’t come off with water *teehee*
That shapeshifting demon was amazing as well. The special effects when it changed were on point and perfect. It didn’t feel fake to me at all. It was subtle, it was cool and I was mindblown by how well it was done. I’m happy that there are a bunch of people out there that are taking such good care of this show.
I didn’t even notice the aging up of the characters until they mentioned it was Clary’s eighteenth birthday. I don’t know if that’s a good point or not but I’m going with the former. I can see why it was necessary to age them up a bit. Clary auditioning for art school is a good way to introduce her artistic talents other than talking about it in the loft or spray-painting Simon’s van.
One thing I did have a problem with is that biscotti thing. It was just too weird for me. In the book, if I remember correctly, Clary needed to apply a rune before she could shove things into paper. I wish they could’ve done something with that this time instead of adapting the “shoving-things-into-paper” power from the movie. It worked in the movie because it was used as a set-up to getting the Mortal Cup but this… nah, it didn’t work for me.
Turning Dorothea into a warlock was a good choice. She’s got more spotlight like this. I can get on board with the “Dot-protecting-Jocelyn” train but I do have one question, though:
Why would Jocelyn need Magnus if she had Dot to work with?
Okay, Dot could’ve been out of the picture back then but wasn’t she the landlord of Jocelyn’s apartment? How does this interpretation work? Is she an employee of Jocelyn now? Or is it the other way around? Maybe we’ll find out later, I don’t know but I’m curious.
After Dot’s been introduced, we meet Jocelyn. In this scene she gratulates Clary on getting into art school AND her 18th birthday before giving her a a family heirloom. Is this a hint to her wanting to tell Clary about the shadow world? If so, well done writers! But then… couldn’t Jocelyn have put her foot down and make Clary stay? Why present her with a stele without explaining what it can do?
Instead we get a bunch of timelapses to explain the audience what’s going on. I must say, those timelapses are pretty clever. I just wish they had done it a little differently. Instead of Clary playing with a doll, she could’ve played with a faerie or something. Chased it or something… I don’t know. That demon was a little too much. I mean, he hovered there for a good couple of minutes without eating Clary, giving Jocelyn more than enough time to kill it.
By the way, Jocelyn disappeared all of a sudden from that mortal’s POV and was glamoured throughout the whole demon killing process and taking Clary by the hand. In my opinion, that woman Jocelyn was talking to, would most likely end up in therapy or a mental institution.
Overall it was a good scene but I just missed a couple of things…
We also see the moment in which Magnus removes Clary’s memories so she can forget everything related to the shadow world. I adored this scene because Magnus is A+ perfection but…. why strap Clary to a pole? Is that how they kept removing her memories? They never said how in the books but Jocelyn strapping her own daughter to a pole??
“My life couldn’t be more mundane” – Clary
HAH!! Hahahahahahahahahahaha Oh Clary…. you wish :p *really loves these teasy jokes*
After some talk about Clary’s mother between Clary, Simon and Maureen (who is a great addition to the show, by the way), we move to the Institute where our beloved shadowhunters are currently preparing to go on a mission.
Straight of the batt, I was head-over-heels in love with the Lightwood siblings. Izzy is everything I imagined her to be. Emeraude is perfect in every way. So is Matthew as Alec. A++++++ for casting this show. It’s the best.
“Demons dig blonds”
“Of course they do…. that’s white”
The sass between Izzy and Alec is to die for! It’s smooth and running. It feels real and witty. Not so much sarcastic but more teasing, like siblings should do. I love that. Also, I love the fact that we get to see so much of Alec and Izzy. They don’t really come forth in the book all that much so, YAY 😀
The inside of the Insitute I’m not sure about. I know some changes had to be made to make the story more appealing but the fact remains that the Lightwoods and Jace are the last of their bloodline. Shadowhunting is a dangerous job. Not many of them reach the age of thirty but this Institute makes it seem as if the world is overrun by Shadowhunters. OR that they’re all stationed in New York….
I do love the interior, though. The computers took some getting used too but looking back on it now, I think it fits. I don’t agree with the McG’s James Bond vision of it but it looks hella good.
I had a real good laugh in this scene. Not because it was stupid but because of what Simon is singing. The writers of this show are incredibly good when it comes to foreshadowing in subtle, unnoticeable ways.
Simon singing Forever Young is the best foreshadowing yet.
Also, I’m happy that they made it a two-person band instead of four. This way we get to know Maureen better and it’s a good foundation for her character’s outline in the overall story.
Right after that, we return to the Pandemonium scene that the show opened with as well. We come back the second Jace bumps into Clary and she tells him to look where he’s going. From here, it gets a bit meh… if you know what I mean. The script was off. It didn’t flow enough. The whole conversation between Jace and Clary felt awkward and unrealistic. I mean.. who blurts out “You have the sight” to someone he’s never seen before and continues it with “How can I not know who you are?”. Ehm…. yeah, okay Jace.. rewind and try again, ‘kay?
Pandemonium is awesome! Every single thing of it is exactly how I imagined it would be. Magnus being the boss of the club is a nice touch. Again, it’s a useful way to introduce his character 😀 I like it.
Also, Simon and Maureen look so out of place. It’s perfect.
Although I loved Pandemonium, the scene does raise a question:
If demons dig blonds so much to have Izzy wear a wig, why does she pull it off the minute she steps on that raised platform to dance? What was the purpose of that wig?
In the last part of Pandemonium you can really see that the script needs to mature a little. Like with the “You have the sight” bit, this part of the scene felt off and awkward. Clary running up to Jace and the shapeshifter, yelling to watch out was unnecessary. She could’ve just shouted it from where she stood. It would’ve saved us from that push-back-and-fall-while-sliding-away which didn’t look that smooth. Hopefully, the special effects in that department will improve in time.
I was really impressed by Alan as Valentine. I was scared that they would, yet again, portray Valentine as this villain who is evil because he can but NOPE. Not this time 😀 Alan does an amazing job as Valentine. He’s charming with an edge. He comes across as a gentleman who still harbours feelings for the woman who betrayed him and left him with the one thing he needed to succeed. The reason I loved book Valentine so much was because he was so convinced of his righteousness that he was too blind to see the other side it. I believe Alan has this side of Valentine down and pours it into everything he does on screen.
When Clary returns home after being send away through the portal by Dot and Jocelyn, Kat delivers an incredible portrayal of Clary in panic. I felt really bad for her. The scene that follows was amazing too. The stabbing with the stele had me feeling like a badass and then Jace comes to the rescue and I was all jittery with fangirl feels. I laughed out loud at Jace’s sarcastic remark about saving her life. It was fantastic *extreme fangirling*
I’m very happy how they scripted that demon bite. You actually see Clary get hit and the effects of the bite. I don’t want to downgrade the movie because that was amazing in its own ways but I missed that in the movie. In the show you see the world starting to sway around Clary which is the reason she faints. LOVE LOVE LOVE THAT!!
In the show, we are able to recognize circle members by spotting a huge red circle rune on the base of their necks….. I don’t really know what to think of that. It doesn’t do it for me. It’s something I would have to get used to, I guess.
“All the legends are true”
I couldn’t be happier with this quote. It honours both the book as it does the movie. I’m so happy that the producers of the show keep the movie alive by adding these subtle references to it. They’re using the abandoned church, where the movie gathered weapons from, as an institute in the show. The characters have the same runes on them as the movie characters did and they added quotes like these. In the movie Hodge says: “All the stories are true”. I love it that Jace is the one who says it this time with a slight alteration.
In the last scene we see another Climon moment. Their chemistry is perfect. The dialogues between the two are amazing. Simon calls Clary to ask where she is because the Find My Friend App says she’s in an abandoned church. I just.. I love them so much. They really feel like Simon and Clary as if Kat and Alberto aren’t real people. They’re Simon and Clary.
And that’s it. Episode 1 ends with a dead shadowhunters on the steps of the Institute and a funny scene between Jace, Simon and Clary.
Overall, I really liked the episode. I would give it a 7 out of 10.
Did you watch it? If so, what did you think of the episode?
Let me know in the comments 🙂