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S2 E09: Measures and Countermeasures

One week away from the finale, Shadowhunters turns up the volume to the maximum. Valentine’s plan is put to motion in the most deceiving way possible. Clary becomes a target in more than one way. The Downworld makes a harsh decision to ensure its survival.

But not all is bad. Alec triumphs as he does his best to protect those he loves. Izzy and Raphael’s involvement hits rock bottom, finally. The finale can’t come fast enough.

Bound by Blood

The ‘one step forward, two steps back curse’ strikes again on the writing of Clary. According to Simon, they’ve been together for a week. That means that Clary ignored Iris’ request to search for Madzie in order to make out with Simon in the boathouse for days. In fact, she only bothers to remember that a warlock child is under Valentine’s control when the blood oath comes back to bite her in the ass.

Or rather, reduce her hand to burned flesh. Clary and Jace go to Magnus for help. The High Warlock can do little more than reducing the pain, though. The only way to stop the curse is fulfilling the oath. Clary has 24 hours to find Madzie or she’ll die.

But the search is not the only problem Clary’s facing this week. Word got out that she is capable of igniting the Soul Sword, destroying the Downworld with it. That makes the Downworlders panic. Maia most of all. She takes it upon herself to make sure Clary won’t be able to touch the Sword. Maia decides to do that by killing Clary.

Her attempt failed, though.  Luke restrains her and Maia tries to explain herself. She’ll sacrifice Clary’s life if it means saving the Downworld. In other to protect Clary, Luke stays back. He intends to stop other downworlders from going after her. In a questionable move, Luke locks Maia in a confined space. She’s claustrophobic, which Luke knows.

This is incredibly cruel and it paints Luke in a dark light. Especially when Maia’s complaints are met with silence. She is right to question why she’s being cruelly punished for doing a bad thing in the name of protecting others. Especially when Clary rarely suffer consequences, and she does it all the time.

However, Maia is not the only one after Clary. The four Downworlder Leaders reunite to discuss what to do about the Soul Sword. Magnus and Luke are willing to discuss a strategy to deal with Valentine, but Meliorn has other plans. As the Seelie Queen’s proxy, he claims for Clary’s head. He’s able to convince Raphael after accusing him to be too close to the Shadowhunters. Meliorn recognizes Izzy’s perfume on him. That means both Seelies and vampires are after Clary now.

And as she grows weaker by the hour and the curse advances to her heart, Simon and Jace have to find Valentine and Madzie. With the help of Madzie’s scarf, Jace is able to track the young warlock down. It’s too easy, though. Jace is sure they are walking into a trap.

Still, that is the only way to save Clary. Because of that, Jace meets up with Valentine. Madzie is too busy enjoying a self-made popsicle as father and son discuss her freedom. Jace ultimately wins when he tells Valentine that Clary will die if he doesn’t take Madzie to her. Valentine lets them go. With the reunion, Clary’s curse is broken just in time to save her life.

However, Valentine had a trick up his sleeve. He has manipulated Madzie enough for the little girl to be completely under his spell. She opens up a portal and takes Clary to Valentine’s lair with her. It is, of course, a creepy amusement park. No surprises there.

Jace and Simon are able to track Clary down. But when they find her, something weird is happening. All Circle members are gone, but for Valentine and Madzie. When Simon attacks Valentine from behind, though, he’s quickly overpowered. Madzie then opens another portal and Valentine takes Simon hostage with him.

While this was happening, the Lightwood siblings have their own struggle. Aldertree has the guts to asks her out, after spending weeks hooking her up on Yin Fen. Izzy is more than quick to shut him down, though. Instead, she goes to meet up with Raphael again. They have a romantic cooking session together, where Izzy finds out Raphael still have a living sister he visits every week. Shadowhunters continues to heavy-hand this joke of a relationship, even as Raphael feed on Izzy, to her delight.

If there’s someone who isn’t happy with it, that’s Alec. He’s worried about his sister. So much so, he goes to Aldertree to ask after Izzy. Alec knows there is something going on with her since she went to see the Iron Sisters. When Aldertree threatens Alec with a psych evaluation to shut him up, Alec goes to Magnus.

As Magnus has learned about Izzy and Raphael’s involvement, he puts things together. Magnus suspects Izzy lied to him when she said she was investigating Yin Fen. He tells Alec she might have been using it, and now, she’s getting the venom directly from the source.

Enraged, Alec yells at Magnus and then goes to the DuMort. He finds Izzy and Raphael there, in a hazy state from their respective drugs. Alec assaults Raphael and he has to be physically restrained by Magnus’ magic. Angry and humiliated, Izzy tells Alec to live her alone. She’s not his little sister anymore.

Alec returns to the Institute, heartbroken that he wasn’t able to save his sister. However, Alec gets his chance for getting rid of the real problem soon enough. Valentine makes the Downworlders he experimented on attack random mundanes. Naturally, Aldertree has all Shadowhunters activated to defend the mundanes. However, Jace calls Alec and alerts him it’s a trap.

Cunningly, Alec starts giving out different orders. When Aldertree confronts him, Alec threatens to denounce him on giving Izzy Yin Fen. Aldertree says nobody would believe him but Alec knows the Clave would investigate. That is enough to have Aldertree obey when Alec says he’s in charge now.

One episode away from the finale, things are ready to explode. Valentine has both Madzie and Simon, as well as the Soul Sword and Magnus’ spellbook. The Institute is scarcely guarded, with most Shadowhunters out in New York either fighting Downworlders or looking for Clary. Izzy is still at the DuMort, too high to function. Seelies and vampires want Clary dead.

I’m ready to see where this is leading.

Personal Notes

  • Jace has a talent for cockblocking. First Magnus and Alec, now Clary and Simon. Can he do one for the team and stop Izzy and Raphael too?
  • Did Magnus live through the fall of Rome? That was in 476 d.C. I hope that was a figure of speech, otherwise, Magnus would be around 1600 years old. I don’t think so.
  • Magnus and Alec’s conversation about the suicide attempt was short but very important. They are both plagued by mental health issues and you don’t often see an LGBQ+ couple dealing with those in teen fantasy shows. Especially a interracial LGBQ+ couple. This is just as important as making Magnus break so many Asian stereotypes. One of them being the struggle against mental health.
  • It’s a powerful moment when Clary asks Simon to kill her if Valentine ever gets to her. Simon can’t even bring himself to consider that. Jace, however, makes the promise. It’s not something Jace does with a light heart, though. However, he knows what it is to be used to kill innocents. He does not want that for Clary.

Images courtesy of Freeform.

 

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