Our review of Shadow and Bone season 2!
Shadow and Bone season 2 was released this morning so here’s our detailed review! Be careful if you haven’t finished this new season because this article contains spoilers!
A logical follow-up of the first season
Shadow and Bone season 2 begins exactly where the first season left us. If you have trouble remembering what happened, we encourage you to watch our recap video below! In terms of what happens in this new season, it’s a logical step after the first one, we don’t need time to introduce characters anymore so the tension, the action and the twists and turns are on a higher level than before!
We really had to remind ourselves while watching it, that “no Inej is not going to die in the first episode, it would make no sense!”
More development for our favorite characters
This second season is full of action but it also took the time to develop our favorite characters. We personally loved how much we got to know about Kaz and what he went through step by step, flashbacks after flashbacks. His trauma and his will for vengeance also developed his relationship with the crows but Inej especially. All of this led Freddy Carter and Amita Suman to remake the famous “How will you have me” scene.
It was also amazing to see a real relationship growing between Genya and David, when it was just a tease in the first season. We’d love to highlight the amazing soundtrack that played in each of their scenes. A subtle but emotional instrumental that highlighted the importance of their moments, leading up to a tragic end.
New amazing characters
New season also means new characters and Shadow and Bone didn’t disappoint us in that part! Nikolai was a very awaited one and we thought Patrick Gibson brought the sort of bravado and charisma that is so special to his character.
From the starting point, taking on the Sturmhond persona, to being the King of Ravka, Nikolai is someone fans can empathize with, especially by the close bond he has with his crew.
Talking about the crew, Tolya and Tamar, the twins, are two newbies this season (not so new to book fans). They have an unbreakable bond and tease each other a lot in the series, which is amplified by Anna Leong Brophy and Lewis Tan’s chemistry with one another.
Concerning the crows, Wylan is the newest addition and Jack Wolfe, introduced playing the flute, is as close to book!wylan as one could dream of.
A storyline a bit different than expected but well adapted
This will be the object of another article but season 2 of Shadow and Bone is adapting parts of both Siege & Storm and Ruin & Rising by Leigh Bardugo. This adaptation became a surprise to the extent that the ending is very much a cliffhanger and makes us uncertain about the future of the series. While the storyline throughout the season was very well mixed between the two, the season finale leaves a lot of questions. Alina doesn’t lose her powers after destroying the fold, will she ever? Nikolai has been struck by a Nichevo’ya, can we hope for King of Scars? Mal and Inej left together on the Hummingbird, what does that mean for Six of Crows and Alina? Alina became a shadow summoner because of Merzost, can we hope for a Darkling return? Alina has an evil smile on the very last shot, could we be expecting a Dark!Alina storyline ?
A cast of actors at the top of their game
Finally, what we really loved about this new season is the fact that we could feel that every actor knew their respective characters better than ever. The entire cast is so dedicated to bringing these characters to life that it becomes hard to highlight only a few. Each and every crow were particularly brilliant and once again proved how perfect they work together. Freddy Carter is one of them and Kaz’s backstory being one of trauma, death and loneliness would make us think how hard it is to interpret. But in episode 4 especially and throughout the first 4 episodes, Freddy made a million emotions pass only through his eyes. We couldn’t keep our eyes off of him.
The Shadow and Bone storyline was full of great performances, especially the main trio: Jessie Mei Li shines like a true sun summoner as Alina showing the strength and sensibilities of the character, as well as Archie Renaux. Finally, Ben Barnes is the most terrifying this season. The highly anticipated “No Shelter But Me” quote put that into perspective. From gestures, to face details and the line delivery Season 2’s Darkling is unredeemable. Yet, his death is as bittersweet as one could imagine, with the slightest dream of a love he could never keep.