Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Shadowhunters Season 1 Reviewed

One day Abbie came to me excitedly and said, "They're making a TV show out of Shadowhunters!" It was a dream come true back then. I was a newbie Shadowhunter fan who had been recently introduced to the book series thanks to Abbie the greatest. I was hooting with joy! The teaser trailers were teasing us like MAD and the wait felt unbearable. On the twelfth of January the TV series premiered on the newly changed Free Form and Abbie and I were practically squealing with excitement. The first episode was pretty cool and we were hooked. Then the show continued and we kept watching and watching and watching ... until it was the season finale! Even though the TV show had brought one of our favorite books' series to life (err .. TV life?) we did end up with some mixed feelings about it. There were some changes that just killed me inside and I kept thinking, "Wait, what? Why'd they have to change that!?" There were also some good things that kept us watching till the very last episode.

I liked Clary! She was cute and tiny just like in the books but also much more fiercer, strong, and boldly confident. Having a much more confident Clary was a good change but I would have liked it if they'd conveyed her surprise of finding out about the Shadow world properly. I felt like she was way too accepting of all that fantasy-like stuff way too soon. It felt a little unreal to see a girl who had just found out she was a Shadowhunter start commanding armies of Vampires and Werewolves all of a sudden. I mean come on, I'd have an IBS triggering attack and go a day pooping uncontrollably or something!

My biggest disappointment and greatest frustration was what they did with Jace. We all know how warrior-like, clever, and what a charmer Jace was in the books. Hell yeah we know, that's what we fell in love with! Then what happened in the TV show? Did he just deflate suddenly? I thought in trying to center it all on Clary and make it super female lead oriented (because a strong female lead is great with the audiences, I get it!) they ruined Jace's warrior-style. I mean, when did Jace take orders from Clary about what needed to be done? When did Jace need somebody to make decisions for him? When did Jace take the advice of sitting safe at home while Clary went out on important missions? He was supposed to be putting his life in danger, being a great fighter, and being exceptionally strong. Instead I saw a TV show Jace showing weaknesses, accepting sitting at home, and having the feels. The character on TV did not have the Jace style grace, that good looking charm, those witty dialogues, the warrior style, or that fierce vibe about him. He kept making CRYING faces, for Gods sake!

My second complain was how they ruined the delicate and sensitive relationship between Jace and Clary. I thought in trying to make everything very bold and modern they sort of destroyed the whole feel of their relationship. In the books it was always girls going after Jace, never Jace being all swoony over Clary. That's what I liked too from the books. I liked how it was obvious that he loved her yet he kept his guard up until finally they both came together as a beautiful couple. In the TV show, sure he is supposed to love her, but it felt like Jace was literally dying for attention (especially in that alternate dimension thingy). Overall, Clary's character shouldn't have overpowered Jace's. That was kind of the main thing in the book, Clary being the new learner and Jace being the expert. She shouldn't have been heading and leading everything in the show. Did I mention how sad I was about there being no green house scene?! That moment was totally ruined!

In my opinion this guy was the best! The TV show may have gone wrong with adapting various parts of the book but what they got spot on perfect was Simon's character. TV show Simon is THE Simon from the books. Not only is he absolutely cutely adorable but also playing the perfect geeky best friend-ish Simon I'd loved in the books. He's the only one in the entire cast who is a hundred percent true to the books. As a vampire too he is excellent. I think if there was anything that kept me hooked it was this hilarious guy!

Did I already mention how disappointed I was with Alec? This Daddario dude keeps making weird faces, as if he can't act properly. The worst change to Alec's character is how they decided to make him hungry for power and recognition. What was the whole deal with trying to become the head of the institute? Alec in the book was supposed to be the older one who followed the law and took the right decisions, not someone who wanted to be above everyone and rule the world! What is this? Mojo Jojo from Powerpuff? They could have chosen and created a much better Alec that is for sure! Now let me talk about Isabelle. I liked her! I did. She was pretty and fun. Just too naked *laughs*. I know Izzy in the books was bold and wore bold clothes but I thought in the TV show she went a little overboard. Sometimes I thought she'd have a dress mishap and I'd have to shut my eyes to avoid seeing more than I needed to! I also thought they underplayed her confidence a little. She seemed too emotional in the TV show comparatively. Over all though, I liked her and wasn't disappointed!

I liked Magnus! I approved of him! I just thought he lacked glitter. Books' Magnus was way more glittery which was something I loved reading about. TV show Magnus showed a lot of desperation where Alec was concerned which was sort of a crappy change but I dealt with it. The guy played the character really well and it wasn't a disappointment watching him. In fact, if I must say it, watching him was actually fun!

Turning Luke into an officer was a fun change. I even liked the Luke they chose for the show. He portrayed Luke's respectful character really nicely. The only something that annoyed me was how Simon and Luke had that moment where they actually were happy about Jace and Clary turning out to be siblings. Nowhere in the books had Luke rejoiced about it. Why do I somehow repeatedly end up feeling like they're ruining all the emotional parts of the book by adding awkward twists.

One of such awkward twists that totally had me crying with anger was Valentine. Everything about this character. Oh my God. First, the book had a much more good looking Valentine (of course just a personal opinion but I thought this one looked older than he should have!). Second, why on earth did they portray as if Luke and Jocelyn's love affair had turned Valentine evil? Jocelyn and Luke's love story in the book was so romantic. He waited for her for about twenty years or so until she finally accepted him and got married to him. Why did they change it into an ugly illegal extra marital affair that caused an otherwise perfectly nice man to go mental because he'd been betrayed by his wife and his Parabatai?

Some other issues in the TV show that were SO unacceptable for me I felt like somebody had crushed my awesome books with a big dirty shoe. Lydia - oh God, wrong on so many levels. The whole Lydia situation was just not needed. Next is my complain about the demons. I was HATING - with a big capital H - the fact that they didn't do justice to the demons or the Forsaken. The descriptions in the book were so awesomely gruesome I was literally imaging and hating the demons. In the show whenever a demon showed up it was either a really fast sequence or something so awfully choreographed that I hardly saw the demons' details. I mean, the book had an entire race of demons that all had different features and noises and icky stuff and all that but none of that was in the TV show. The Institute revamped into a modern head office pissed me off too. I'd have liked the church like interiors with marbled floors and libraries much more than what they made it to be. Also, why are there PEOPLE working at the Institute other than the Lightwoods? Whaaaaaaaaaaa???

I mean, how fake does that look? Jace isn't even forcing that blade inside the demon, who by the way just looks like he is almost human and wearing some kind of jacket.

The changes sometimes really got to me, to the extent that at some point I was actually bored and disappointed with the show. Yet, I love the book series so much (and Simon was so cute) that I still kept watching until the season finale aired. It's not as fantastic as it should have been, given that it was based on a story so amazing, but it wasn't bad enough either for me to totally give up on it. What do you know, I may even end up watching the next season when it premieres!


  1. You should watch the film they made. It's way better than the TV series in my opinion though I've never read the books. Plus they have the greenhouse scene!

    Rach //

    1. Hey!
      I have seen the movie and it was much better than the TV show, definitely! :)
      PS: Your comment somehow went in the spam folder and I just found it months later! Oops.
      Anyway, thank you for writing to me! Season 2 is about to begin next month!!! Hope it's better than the first one!


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