Shadowhunters “Raising Hell” Review (Season 1 Episode 4)

My favorite network on television is The CW. It’s a network that’s developed into a hub for well-produced genre content, as well as providing a great amount of diversity in its casting and just all around quality content. In short, it’s much more than the punchline network so many people seem to dismiss it. Shadowhunters doesn’t air on The CW, but it feels like the exact show so many of that channels naysayers would expect to find: a vapid, meandering program that fails to provide any reason to tune in other than the romantic entanglements of its young, pretty characters.

The problem with “Raising Hell” is that it finds the show fully sliding into that dull, plodding slump, giving us with yet another hour that takes far too long getting to the point while also ultimately going nowhere. Instead of an hour dedicated to getting Clary’s lost memories back, we spend the majority of the running time trying to convince the guy who can help them by returning a necklace. Thrilling adventure!

Alright, fair enough, there’s room to make that concept at least somewhat exciting, but this show has yet to provide anything of the sort. Instead, a major aspect of this episode is just dedicated to Clary getting dressed for a party, which is yet another excuse to focus on just how much these characters lust after one another.

Maybe these scenes could work, but what continues to hold the show back is its dogged refusal to give any depth to the other shadowhunters. Outside of Clary, everyone on the team is solely defined by a single character trait. Jace is the brooding hot guy, Izzy is sexually liberated, and Alec primarily just exists to hate Clary. I’ll grant that in Alec’s case, we at least learned that he’s actually jealous of Clary and Jace’s attraction to her, but it’s not much to go on.

And then there’s Simon, who more or less decided it was time to get back to his normal life just when the shadowhunters could actually stand to pay attention to him. Yeah, as hinted last week, he’s pretty much turning into a vampire, which seems set to put him on a villainous path for at least the foreseeable future. Really, this is probably for the best, as the idea that he could actually be part of any love triangle with Jace and Clary is laughable; there’s no denying which of the two guys Clary’s got her eyes on. He also said “Come at me, bro” without a hint of irony, which is hilarious.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments!