Television Review: Shadowhunters, Series 1



When her mother is kidnapped, Clary Fray’s world discovers demons are real, her father is alive and she is actually a Shadowhunter – warriors who fight against the demons.

With the help of her new Shadowhunter friends, Clary races to find her mother, and the mysterious Mortal Cup.

Shadowhunters aren’t easy to work with though. Jace is driven to the point of recklessness, Alec doesn’t know what he is feeling for who and Isabelle wants to prove herself to her parents.

Then there’s Simon, Clary’s `mundane` friend, with the biggest heart of them all.

Life will never be the same again.

Programme: Shadowhunters, Series 1

Company: Constantin Film

Date: 20

Rating: 3.75 /5


Just to put it out there – I am a massive fan of the Cassandra Clare books. I wanted to see what they had done with the adaption so much that I got a Netflix account just to watch Shadowhunters.

The problem? It’s made this really hard to write up!

I can see why the absolute die-hard fans of the books didn’t like it. The second half of the series goes down a completely different route and some of the episodes were weaker because of it. Why does every series feel the need for a parallel universe episode?

I can also see why those who haven’t read the books didn’t like it. Some of the characterisations and relationships may come across as cheesy or fake. The changes to Alec’s character to cause friction between him and Jace could easily make him an un-likeable character to those who didn’t know the books (and we all know how perfect Alec really is!).

I, however, enjoyed the books but wouldn’t class myself as a die-hard fan. I thought the first half was stronger because it was truer to the books. Already knowing the characters worked to my advantage. Magnus and Alec are my favourite couple in fiction, so all of their scenes involved me squealing at them to get together. I knew the characters, I liked the characters before watching, and that helped gave me groundwork to build on.

I am curious though. Did those who hadn’t read the books actually understand what was going on and the world being presented?


One thing that made me very happy was how beautiful the cast were. Seriously. I’ve never seen a show with such a beautiful cast! But in the books, Isabelle in particular is described as being stunning, and in this, she was. The 2013 film never touched upon the descriptions in the book.

I thought the acting was good enough for the roles and there was a nice bit of character development from pretty much everyone. Unfortunately, it was the plots that let the show down a little.

Overall, I loved it, but how much that was influenced by my love of the books, I don’t know.

What did you think? Have you read the books? Which did you prefer if yes? Let me know!


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3 thoughts on “Television Review: Shadowhunters, Series 1

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