Synopsis of 2×03: Everyone is on the hunt for Jace, but all for their own reasons.
It’s the final countdown! “Parabatai Lost” marks the final episode written by the season 1 writers of Shadowhunters and episode four will be the first in the changing of the showrunners. So far, given the way the series has been going up until this point, I’m pretty excited to see where we’ll be taken. Although the changes in the second season so far are nice, they’re not perfect. We’re still getting sprinklings of bad dialogue and cheesy lines from characters during serious moments. It’s just not there yet.
“Parabatai Lost” is an episode that still has a lot of the stilted dialogue from season one, especially in the flashbacks we are assaulted with immediately in the episode. As Alec has slipped below the surface from using adamas, we’re treated to a barrage of memories that Alec has of him meeting Jace and then becoming parabatai with him. The kids they picked to play the characters are about as good as you can imagine on a show with a strained budget and questionable writing.
It’s funny because the kids deliver the lines just like Alec and Jace did in season one when no one knew how to write anything. It feels a little unnatural, but I’d blame that on the writing before the kids. Still, there are genuinely good moments between the flashbacks and between Jace and Alec when they are finally reunited. That scene feels real because we’ve spent the whole episode watch Jace get his ass handed to him, and when he finds out Alec is in danger he’s willing to do whatever’s necessary, including handing himself over to the wolves, to make sure Alec is okay. This shows me a lot more about the bond between parabatai then simply stating it in words.
In the episode, Jace is being chased by everyone, but primarily the werewolves. When Jace washes up on shore — in that awesome yet overused scene in which the camera tracks his face half submerged in water — he is found by a passing jogger with the body of Gretel, the white-haired werewolf that Valentine killed last episode. Instead of trying to explain himself or letting the jogger calm down, he bolts, making himself the prime suspect to the crime.When Luke and his partner inevitably turn up, Luke is left with no choice but to go after Jace.
Jace ends up at Hunter’s Moon, a bar with a bartender who identifies him instantly as a shadowhunter and he realizes she’s a werewolf, the bartender is named Maia and a member of Luke’s pack. She let’s Jace use the phone to call Izzy and the whole group plans to meet at Magnus’s apartment after he finds out what happened to Alec.
Before he can leave Hunter’s Moon though, Maia stops him and he is confronted by the wolves who believe him to be Gretel’s killer. They beat the crap out of him at the bar before he escapes, but is pretty badly wounded. Despite Luke’s defense of Jace, he agrees with his pack that if Jace did kill Gretel then their justice would be to kill Jace in retaliation. Blood for blood, eye for eye; potato, potahto.
Jace barely makes it far away when he is brought to a hospital because of his injuries. Maia and Luke track him there easily and he’s once again forced to run, but not before Maia turns into a wolf IN THE MIDDLE OF THE HOSPITAL. Aren’t there rules against this? Is she so bent on revenge that she’s ready to throw all caution to the wind? Like, this isn’t some darkened alley, this is in front of a mundane and she just casually turns into a wolf. I guess we’ll be needing some memory wipe spells soon.
Eventually Jace gets saved by Jocelyn, who offers him help, but after nearly killing him two episodes ago, no one is surprised when he rejects her offer. It’s a strong scene between the two of them, and solidifies their relationship with one another.
After hitting the water, Clary reveals to Izzy that she and Jace were instantly separated due to the currents and she rolls up to the Institute wet and bruised all over. She is interrogated by Aldertree, but she reveals nothing. She finds out quickly about what happened to Alec and works with Izzy to find a solution.
Magnus has spent the time by Alec’s side trying to keep him from slipping away, and it doesn’t seem like he’s a welcome presence to the Clave. Aldertree is quick to dismiss him and Izzy and places a guard by Alec’s bedside after Magnus and Izzy requested for a portal to bring them to Magnus’ apartment. The guard is kind of a douchebag, but he’s also an idiot because once he starts peacocking, he almost immediately gets shut down by a Magnus who doesn’t have time for his crap.
In fact, Magnus gets an award this episode for being the realest. When Jocelyn arrives to tell him that Clary’s been found, he turns on her and is pissed at the situation that he’s been put into. Sure, he’s powered mostly by his concern for Alec and the fear that he may have lost him, but he’s also not wrong. He reminds Jocelyn that he didn’t want to be involved with shadowhunters, and that Jocelyn’s problems are all started by Jocelyn, including making the choice to wipe Clary’s memories for 12 years.
Clary is pulled away from all this when Simon calls her. He’s gotten missed calls from his mom and returning home he finds that she’s gone and started drinking again. Worried that something might have happened to her, he begs Clary to help track her down. At the same time, Raphael starts putting major pressure on Simon to find Camille instead of his mother, and even stoops to threaten him.
Clary comes to help and convinces Simon to come out of the coffin and reveal his true identity to his mom. The two bond over their memories of the past, and it’s another genuine moment. She talks about his childhood love of mustard sandwiches and hypochondria just like Simon reminisced about how Jocelyn has always been right a few episodes ago. It’s another scene that cements into place just how well they know each other without overtly stating it.
Unfortunately, Simon doesn’t get to come out to his mom. Tracking her down to a coffee shop, he arrives to find her having coffee with Raphael, who is posing as his band manager. He’s come up with a ploy of their band going on tour and that’s why Simon hasn’t been at school. His mom believes him, and Simon doesn’t push to come out, especially with Raphael threatening his mom. It really doesn’t help that Simon’s mom outwardly invites Raphael into her home, which you know doesn’t bode well for her. Here’s hoping she doesn’t die, and she finds out the truth about Simon.
The episode culminates as Izzy and Magnus are finally able to spirit Alec away to Magnus’ apartment. But, Aldertree discovers that he’s been tricked BECAUSE OF ANOTHER HORRIBLE SHAPESHIFTING DISGUISE RUNE. God, so I hate those runes. Aldertree implies that the werewolves are after Jace and that he might not make it to Brooklyn in time to save Alec, forcing Izzy to make a pact with Aldertree that protects both her brothers but turns Jace into the Clave.
We learn about Alec’s past, including when Izzy found out about Alec’s crush on Jace. Luke and Izzy arrive just in time as Jace is about to get taken out by the pack, and Jace is able to reunite with Alec and bring him back. Unfortunately it’s right after Alec wakes up that he’s taken away by the Clave. Yikes.
Also, does anyone feel like the excessive use of camoflauging and “shapeshifting” is starting to become a trope? Anytime, there’s something remotely fishy, it’s just a trick of the rune. Like, maybe they should limit the trick to once every other week? Or maybe once every other season.
Anyways, it’ll be interesting to see where Izzy is taken this season with this betrayal. Maia’s introduction was good, but definitely very two dimensional. I’m intrigued by Luke’s pack and how they might see his favoritism for Jace and Simon as a problem. All in all, the episode was good. The strengths were heavily in favor of Dom Sherwood’s Jace and some linear storytelling that allowed more room for character growth.