“Raising Hell?” More like “Raising Malec.”
In “Raising Hell,” Clary, Jace, Alec, and Isabelle lure Magnus Bane out of hiding in order to discover what he did to Clary’s memories and to retrieve them. The hour brings them to a Downworlder hangout where Alec ad Magnus meet for the first time — and sparks fly — and where things soon turn dark for Magnus and his warlock friends when Valentine’s men find him before Clary and co. attempt to retrieve her lost memories.
We begin with Clary having nightmares about being tied up and having her memories stolen from her. When Clary wakes up, Simon is there — although Clary first sees Jace — and her best friend comforts her. When Jace walks up to the room he’s the walking defintion of jealous before he turns around and leaves. Simon helps Clary put the pieces together and notices the name Magnus — “Magnus Bane,” Simon says — which Camille was mentioning back at Hotel Dumort.
Clary thanks Simon for his help and once again Simon gets friend zoned — seriously if Clary doesn’t want him, I will have him — and then he hallucinates having vampire fangs and blood dripping from his mouth. This can’t be good.
Clary tells Jace what she learned about who might be responsible for taking her memories: Magnus Bane, the High Warlock of Brooklyn. “He could be the key to everything,” Jace says. So it’s clear where they need to look next.
Meanwhile, Simon has had enough of being trapped within the place that has seemingly stolen his best friend away. So he decides to leave the Institute and he wants Clary to come with him. But she won’t follow him, which just only makes Simon angrier than he already is. Clary tells Simon that she thinks these are her people, which hurts worse than a literal slap to the face.
The team gathers to discuss Magnus Bane. Eventually they decide on setting up a meeting at a local Downworlder club to lure Magnus out, along with Isabelle’s ruby necklace. The necklace that fans petitioned for and got. They know there is no way that Magnus can turn down this jewel that was once a gift from him to Camille. And they’re right. Well played, Shadowhunters. But can I ask why the necklace was locked up in the floors of the Institute and not around Izzy’s neck to begin with?
Meanwhile back in Chernobyl, Pangborn isn’t dead like we assumed only he’s developed some kind of ability to spew green gas from his mouth, and Valentine uses him to take out a couple of spies from the Clave. Okay now Pangborn is actually dead.
Since they’re going to a party — not Magnus’ party for Chairman Meow, which is anyone else wondering why we’ve yet to hear about Chairman Meow or Church in this series? — Clary goes to Isabelle’s room to borrow some clothes for the party. But Clary is so a jeans and t-shirt girl– me too, girl — but Izzy lends her a shirt that will look like a dress on Clary, ala the books. In this scene I find myself continuously asking why does Isabelle continue to wear bras like they’re shirts? Because they’re not. Someone throw her a shirt, please.
We finally see Magnus again for the first time since his brief appearance when he was running away in episode. We find him speaking with another warlock, Elios, who is wondering why Magnus is risking everything for some necklace. Valentine poses too big of a threat. “I was alive when the dead sea was just a lake that was feeling poorly,” Magnus says and once again reminds us how amazing it is when lines from the book are incorporated into the show. Though not nearly enough. But end of discussion. Magnus will meet with Clary Fairchild. There was a line near the end of the conversation that fans of Cassie’s books should take notice of: “Go to the spiral labyrinth and tell Tessa we need more shields.” That’s right, Tessa Gray. That was a nice Easter Egg for fans of the books.
Back at the Institute, Alec and Isabelle are arming up for their trip to the Downworlder club. Alec is his usual cheery self, and Isabelle wonders why he’s not more excited. Alec reminds Izzy that it’s a mission. Isabelle tells Alec that before Clary got here every day was the same: “Go on a mission, kill demons. Go on a mission, kill demons. At least now things are interesting,” she says. Alec reminds Isabelle about the seriousness of the whole thing while unloading his distaste for Clary, which makes him feel much better.
We pick back up with Simon who is literally having the worst day every, and oh, look, Maureen is still on the show. Maureen begins to wonder if Simon and Clary are dating, to which he says no, and she tells him that she’d like to date him. In a fit of embarrassed clumsiness, Maureen cuts herself on a piece of glass and Simon is transfixed and Maureen walks out. Simon walks over to the broken picture frame and touches some of the blood and licks it clean off his finger.
Clary, Jace, Alec, and Isabelle head out to the club to meet with Magnus. When Jace gives Magnus the necklace, Magnus tells them that he fed Clary’s memories to a memory demon to protect Clary but mostly himself so that Valentine wouldn’t torture those memories out of him like he tortured Dot. Ah, yes, Dot. Magnus tells Clary that Valentine killed Dot, and for someone who was supposed to be like a big sister to Clary she didn’t take the news particularly hard. Magnus offers to protect Clary in a way that the Shadowhunters can’t. But Clary refuses to go with him. She won’t hide from her problems.
Just as someone attempts to kill Magnus, an arrow flies out of nowhere to shoot the assassin down. We see that the arrow belongs to none other than Alec Lightwood, who immediately catches Magnus’ eye. “Who are youuuu?” he purrs. But then it’s over just as quickly as Magnus disappears into the portal, but Clary gets a piece of his clothes that will be used to track him down.
Outside the club, Alec takes Isabelle’s advice to not keep his feelings bottled up and unloads on Jace. Not only did they not get Clary’s memories, but they lost the necklace. Alec says that they’re risked their lives again and again for this girl but they’re no closer to getting the Mortal Cup. Just as Clary feels she’s lost all hope, Jace and Alec attempt to track Magnus using the button Clary pulled off of him, which leads to an intimate moment between the parabatai. Also, apparently Shadowhunters have become witches because they can use magic to track down warlocks. Hmph.
The Shadowhunters journey to an abandoned warehouse where they tracked Magnus. The Circle has found Magnus, and he tries to battle one of the members but eventually gets an assist from the hottie with blue eyes. Magnus and Alec are formally introduced, and good God, is that a smile on Alec’s face? (He should do that more often). And that’s definitely a smile on my face. While this scene was brief you could instantly feel that chemistry between Matthew Daddarrio and Harry Shum Jr., which is something that has been missing with these other pairings on the show.
Simon calls Clary to apologize for leaving her at the Institute, and he admits that ever since he left Hotel Dumort he’s been feeling like crap lately. He chalks it up to the flu, but we all know it’s not the flu. “Clary, you’re the last person I’d ever want to leave in this world.” Ominous foreshadowing?
While they were able to fend off Valentine’s attack this time, there’s still the matter of retrieving Clary’s memories, and Magnus agrees to summon the memory demon. But first he pays up for the Shadowhunters helping save his life. He gives Isabelle the ruby necklace, and finally it’s where it belonged in the first place. But back to the memory demon…
After Clary draws the pentagram that will house the demon, Clary, Jace, Isabelle, Alec, and Magnus gather around at each point of the pentagram and lock hands. They cannot break the circle at any point during this process or the demon will escape. So of course there’s that instantaneous feeling that someone is going to let go and all hell is going to break loose.
When they raise the memory demon, Magnus tells them that as payment the memory demon will take one memory from each of them of the person they love the most. We see Isabelle lose a memory of Alec, Clary lose a memory of her mother, and Alec loses a memory of Jace, which prompts him to deny that he loves Jace and Alec ends up breaking the circle and, wouldn’t you know, it hell breaks loose. Jace is grabbed by the memory demon, and Clary ends up killing the demon knowing that her memories will be lost forever. But is Jace okay? “I don’t know. Does he normally lay like that without moving?” Magnus teases as we get another beautiful line from the books. (See, it’s not so hard to incorporate those lines).
When Jace wakes up, Alec moves to the side to watch from afar. Magnus notices this and tells him, “There’s nothing to be ashamed of, Alec.” “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he replies. “You’ll know.”
Back at the Institute, Jace stops by Clary’s room and compliments her on killing a Greater Demon, which not many Shadowhunters can say they’ve done. But when Clary killed the demon she lost her memories forever, which means that any chance she had of finding her mother is gone. But Jace promises her they’ll find another way. After Jace leaves, Clary calls Simon, who immediately hits ignore, and we see him outside of Hotel Dumort with Camille waiting for him. Oh no.
Back in Clary’s room we see her take a peek at her mother using the necklace she gave her. Only Valentine can see her or sense her or something. So he speaks right to her. “You want your mother? Give me the Cup.”
While this episode was far from perfect, it was much better than last week’s episode that was the poorest to date. Alec and Magnus were the hour’s best moments as we saw what it looks like when you have a pairing that has an insane amount of chemistry. Let’s hope the show continues to take advantage of that and the popularity of the pairing in the fandom. The show still shows promise in carrying out certain relationships and storylines, and I’m anxious to see how the rest of the season plays out.
Here’s a look at the good (raves) and the bad (rants) of “Raising Hell”:
Magnus and Alec: I’ve been waiting to give a damn about a couple in this show, and finally we have it. While this is just the beginning of Magnus and Alec’s journey, I couldn’t help but smile like an idiot when these two interacted. And that’s a testament to the chemistry between Harry Shum Jr. and Matthew Daddario. It feels organic, genuine, and gives me all the feels.
Lines from the Book: See what happens when you include lines directly from the book? (“Dead sea” and “Does he always just lay there like that”). Good things happen. The writing has been my biggest criticism of this show – and it still is – so when we get dialogue directly from Cassandra Clare’s books it feels so much like the tone of the books. But then just as quickly it’s gone.
Easter Eggs: One of the cool things about adaptations are the little Easter Eggs sprinkled throughout that fans of the source material will easily pick up on. While Shadowhunters hasn’t done that nearly enough, there was a very interesting Easter Egg regarding a certain Tessa Gray from The Infernal Devices, who Magnus name-dropped in the episode. “Go to the spiral labyrinth and tell Tessa we need more shields,” he said, alerting us to Tessa being around in this series. Let’s just hope she remains an Easter Egg and not a full-fledged character in the series. This isn’t her series or when we first want to meet her.
Isabelle’s Necklace: This is also included in my rants portion, but I really appreciated that we finally got to see Isabelle’s ruby necklace from the books that’s been passed on from Lightwoods.
Jace and Alec Fighting: I understand that Alec is insanely jealous and enraged at Clary’s arrival and how she’s caught the eye of Jace, the guy he is in love with, but there is way too much arguing going on between these parabatai. The thing with Jace and Alec is that sometimes they might disagree — especially about Clary — but they are able to move past it and not let it affect them like we see it is.
Clary and Jace: Unlike with Magnus and Alec, the series’ central pairing lacks the chemistry that makes the audience smile and give a damn. It just comes off as forced and not sincere. But we have to wonder if this is even something that can be fixed at this point?
Isabelle’s Necklace: While I appreciated that the show finally acknowledged Isabelle’s famous ruby necklace, the execution of it all is where it fell flat. This is supposed to be a valuable piece of jewelry that has been passed down in the Lightwood family. But in the show Hodge just found it lying around somewhere in the Institute and used it as a bargaining chip. Didn’t like that depiction.
Pacing: This is all about the Simon becoming a vampire storyline, which was made incredibly clear with this episode. We are four episodes in — to what’s supposed to be a season based on the first book — and a second book storyline is already in full swing. I can see that they want to ramp up Simon’s role in the series, but there are other ways to do that and really let the vampire arc develop.
Shadowhunters airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on Freeform.