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‘Shadowhunters’ Recap: Bad Blood

The last few episodes have
moved so fast that it’s a wonder Freeform
isn’t fielding complaints of
whiplash from viewers. Episode 8
offers a break
from trying to keep up with a racing plot, but doesn’t ease
up on the emotional

rollercoaster side of things. Instead, viewers are treated to an hour akin
watching 1000 dominos be
lined up. The smallest unskilled movement could bring
it all crashing down,
but the anticipation of the
inevitable collapse is
exhilarating. There’s so many plot pieces carefully
placed here- hearts on the

line, lives in the balance, and major reveals that could topple it all into

chaos- that it’s almost a
relief that the actual plot only inches forward.
Everyone is determining
their strategy, and some plans are
definitely better
than others.

The highs: Raphael. This is the second
time the official
head of the NYC Night Children appears, and this time he’s got more of a

backbone. The last time viewers saw
Raphael, he was literally cowering in a
darkened hallway, hissing at Jace to
remember who his friends are. In
episode, Raphael holds up his end of that promise. After the vampire
venom fully
takes hold of Simon
at the Hotel Du Mort, Raphael brings him to the Institute.
aren’t exactly welcome on the
hallowed grounds, and Raphael would
have been well within his rights to
clean up Camille’s mess and just
stake Simon
himself. Instead, he risks his own safety to return Simon to his
friends. He
puts Clary in an
impossible position, but he’s right to do so. The decision of
Simon’s fate
needs to come from his best

Isabelle and Magnus.
These two have a great scene bonding
over a dead body, but developments
in their
separate plot lines also earn them a top spot. Izzy is changing
everything about
herself while
Magnus is tearing down a century’s worth of emotional walls, and
both doing it for Alec. It’s just
too bad that Alec is sacrificing his
own happiness in a way that is going to
make Izzy and Magnus’s

The lows: Valentine’s monologue to Jocelyn.
There’s so much
else happening
in this episode that it’s almost possible to forget that Clary’s
is still hiding out in Chernobyl
with Clary’s comatose mother. Also
forgettable is his monologue to Jocelyn.
She can’t hear him, and there’s
new information here anyway. This entire scene could have been covered
in the
“previously on
Shadowhunters” intro, and viewers wouldn’t have missed a beat.
there’s a minute and a half of
rehashed backstory awkwardly stuck in
the middle of the episode.

final verdict: a solid and
episode. There’s not much forward plot movement, but all the
pieces have been
placed just right
for a spectacular fall. The last scene of the episode delivers
one of the
series’ most emotionally-charged
interactions yet, and just may serve
as the tipping point in this delicate
balance. Only episode 9 will

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