TV Recap: Shadowhunters s01e07 “Major Arcana” or “Can Someone Just Kill Simon Already?”

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Seven weeks ago, I got an urge to recap another crappy TV show. It was with excitement and anticipation that I attacked my first Shadowhunters recap, but alas, what was once entertaining and amusing has now become tedious. Or maybe that’s just the show’s plot. But I am a woman of my word, so I bring you the latest Shadowhunters clusterfuck.

This week’s episode takes up where last week’s left off, with Clary suddenly figuring out where her mother hid the Mortal Cup. Remember when Clary turned the JC box into a drawing? She believes Jocelyn turned the Mortal Cup into a painting, specifically the Ace of Cups in Dot’s tarot cards. Oh yeah, that’s real subtle, Jocelyn. Nobody’d ever figure that one out. While Clary shares all this, Magnus makes this facial expression that pretty much sums up my feelings on this episode and show in general:

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Jace points out a fly in the ointment—Dot had the cards when she was abducted by Valentine. Luke arrives in a timely fashion to inform the gang that he actually has the cards, and they’re in his desk drawer at the precinct. So what was the point of this hemming and hawwing over Dot? So Magnus could recap for us again how much Valentine would fuck shit up once he got the Cup? And here I was thinking he’d just amass a herd of fluffy little bunny-looking demons because they’re adorable. After Jocelyn was abducted, Luke took the cards from the loft to make sure the Circle couldn’t track Clary. Now that the poison is out of Luke’s system, his fast werewolf healing kicks in, and he can help the gang get the cards. Because on Shadowhunters, it takes six people with supernatural abilities to obtain a fucking deck of cards.

How many Shadowhunters does it take to put in a light bulb? Wait, don't answer that.

“How many Shadowhunters does it take to put in a light bulb?”

 

Simon wakes up next to Maureen. The camera actually cuts to Maureen first, and for a minute I was all, “Who?” Shows how important Maureen is. Simon hallucinates Clary and calls Maureen by Clary’s name. Maureen, naturally, is less than pleased. Simon acts even more ridiculous than usual trying to do damage control and runs off, because if there’s anything an episode of this show needs, it’s more scenes of Simon being an idiot and a drain on the narrative, the characters’ patience, and the viewers’ patience.

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Luke heads into the precinct while Jace and Clary wait outside. Before Luke can get the cards, he is intercepted by a group of suits. They take him into custody and confiscate his badge and gun. Captain Vargas tells Luke the head suit is named Fisk and they’re with Internal Affairs. Outside, Jace peers through some big plate-glass windows and sees Luke being escorted by the suits. Jace uses a rune to give him Superman-esque vision, which he then employs to read Fisk’s badge. I wonder if there’s a rune that makes them fly, too.

“I’m not Kryptonian; I’m just constipated.”

“I’m not Kryptonian; I’m just constipated.”

Back at the Institute, Isabelle is packing a suitcase. She pauses to gaze longingly at a picture of Meliorn before closing the suitcase and hiding it under her bed. She leaves her room and runs into Robert, who’s knocking on Alec’s door. Robert senses something is off with Isabelle, probably because she’s not dressed like she’s on her way to a MCR concert. He asks if everything is OK. Isabelle assures Robert that everything is fine and offers to take care of Alec’s paperwork in his absence.

Fisk interrogates Luke, believing him a suspect in the demonic murders. Luke lawyers up. When Fisk steps out, Clary and Jace slip past him—they’re invisible to Fisk since he’s mundane. Once inside the room, Jace disables the security camera. Luke tells Jace and Clary to them to get the cards and warns them not to rely on glamours to avoid detection, since Luke isn’t the only downworlder on the force and there might be Circle spies lurking about. When Fisk returns, Jace and Clary slip out, and Luke bullshits an excuse for the camera malfunctioning.

"You're really expecting a competent police force on a supernatural teen show?"

“You’re really expecting a competent police force on a supernatural teen show?”

Alec finally shows up at the Institute and runs into Isabelle. She teases him about Magnus, and um… there is literally nothing I want to know less about then my brother’s sex life. Isabelle tells Alec she broke up with Meliorn, and they wonder what’s taking Jace so long. Isabelle wonders if Jace and Clary are hooking up. What is it with these people and their intense interest in their siblings’ sex lives???

Cut to Jace and Clary, who are hiding in a closet at the precinct. They exchange suggestive dialogue while Clary practices glamouring. I thought Luke told them not to use glamours? They walk into the bull pen where Clary pretends to have a lovers’ spat with Jace.

We feel you, Clary.

We feel you, Clary.

While the uniforms question Jace, Clary snoops in Luke’s desk and finds it cleaned out. Clary asks Captain Vargas where Luke’s stuff is, pretending she’s looking for a spare house key. Vargas reveals that Luke’s stuff is in the evidence vault upstairs. She also makes a joke about Clary and Jace having matching tattoos and women “always [falling] for the bad boys.” Excuse me, is it the 80s again, and am I reading Sweet Demon High? One of the uniforms’ eyes glows green, revealing that he is a downworlder.

Either that, or a cosplay lens retailer was having 2-for-1 deal.

Either that, or a cosplay lens retailer was having 2-for-1 deal.

Simon sits outside a food truck and ruminates on his vampire transformation, watching vampire flicks on his tablet while jotting his symptoms down on a napkin. The waitress brings his order, which includes a garlic bagel with extra garlic. The waitress sees Simon’s list and looks ready to start backing away slowly, but she might just be anticipating Simon’s breath after eating that bagel. Simon acts way too nervous while trying to explain away his list as research for a graphic novel. Look, show. It’s been obvious for a while that something is up with Simon. Three episodes, to be precise. How many more dumb unfunny scenes of him freaking out in various contexts do we need to see? How much more airtime do we need to waste? Simon hallucinates that his coffee his blood. I hallucinate that it’s something else.

bleach

At the precinct, Vargas asks Fisk for a full list of everything confiscated from Luke. One of the police dogs starts barking wildly at Vargas, who throws it a look that isn’t obviously evil at all.

I’m guessing she’s a cat person.

I’m guessing she’s a cat person.

Alec and Isabelle arrive outside the precinct and meet up with Jace and Clary. They discuss potential plans to get the cards, eliminating portals since Magnus can only portal people to places he’s been to before. With all his partying, Magnus has never been at the police station? I find it hard to believe he or one of his cohorts never spent a night in the drunk tank. Simon calls Clary and is freaking out, claiming it’s an emergency. Jace grabs Clary’s phone and hangs up on Simon. Now, I too wish Simon would shut the fuck up already and ain’t nobody got time for his shit, but it’s pretty damn rude of Jace to make decisions for Clary like that. What is it with these teen franchises and controlling douchebag heroes?

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Luke is released from custody, but Fisk warns him of the evidence piling up against him (his car wrapped around a pole and covered in blood, for example—thanks, Jace!) Luke knocks on Vargas’s office door and, finding it ajar, walks inside. It looks like a struggle took place here. Luke notices blood seeping under a closet door and finds Vargas’s body stuffed inside.

The coroners haul the body away and Fisk tries unsuccessfully to get Luke to cooperate. Fisk speaks to Alaric about the murder, and Luke eavesdrops with his werewolf super hearing. Alaric estimates that Vargas has been dead for a couple of hours, but Fisk claims he talked to her about 45 minutes ago. After Fisk leaves, Luke instructs Alaric to check Vargas’s body for demon venom.

Because the writers know we’re dying for another Simon scene, cut to him in his room, perusing fake webMD. What’s he going to do, search “vampirism?” Simon’s Mom and his sister walk in. Maureen called and informed the sister of Simon’s erratic behavior, and they all suspect Simon is on drugs. The Mom and sister argue and Simon, frustrated, bangs his fists on his desk only to break the desk clean in half. The Mom and sister look on in horror.

“This is the last time I buy a cheap desk from Walmart”

“This is the last time I buy a cheap desk from Walmart”

Clary and Jace re-enter the precinct, narrowly missing Alaric before slipping into the elevator. Jace assures Clary that Alec and Isabelle are providing the necessary distraction. As part of said distraction, Alec awkwardly flirts with the desk sargeant so Isabelle can grab her card, sneak into the basement, and cut the power. Clary requires a night vision rune to climb the elevator shaft with Jace, and despite there being numerous other spaces where she could draw the rune, she has to draw it on the back of her shoulder. Of course, Jace has to help her so they get up close and personal.

"A little more to the left."

“A little more to the left.”

While Ocean’s Four Dumbasses enact their plan, Alaric informs Luke that the venom in Vargas’s system belongs to a shapeshifter. Luke is goes after the shapeshifter and tells Alaric to alert the pack.

Jace and Clary enter the evidence vault through what looks like a ventilation shaft, but it’s in the wall and not the ceiling, where I’m used to seeing ventilation shafts. Have all those Alias episodes I’ve marathoned steered me wrong? The Dynamic Duo glamour themselves to hide from a guard that they are lucky was human. Clary uses her magic crystal flashlight or whatever that I recall from the second episode, when she and Jace went to see the Silent Brothers. Why does she need that if she and Jace have night vision runes? Did the night vision runes expire? Among all the shelves and shelves of boxes they quickly find the one containing Luke’s stuff, and retrieve the Ace of Cups card. Clary taps it and to her and Jace’s consternation, nothing happens.

"You mean this thing isn't a touch screen?"

“You mean this thing isn’t a touch screen?”

They make it out of the precinct and meet up with Alec and Isabelle. Isabelle’s demon-detecting necklace is glowing, so they have to get out of dodge. Clary bumps into a little old lady who of course is the shapeshifter. The shapeshifter attacks, but Jace runs her through and rescues Clary. Too bad. Jace, Alec, and Isabelle spot several more demons nearby, and Clary is frustrated that she can’t sense them too. Jace tells Clary it’s like seeing through a glamour. Is this something Shadowhunters have to practice? Is it like spider sense or something? The gang runs to the electrical room where they can apparently escape via underground tunnels. Alec volunteers to hold off the demons. Jace argues, but Isabelle assures him that Alec will save his ass yet again.

I have no compelling reason to include this picture of Alec wielding a phallic shaped weapon, but have it anyway.

I have no compelling reason to include this picture of Alec wielding a phallic shaped weapon, but have it anyway.

In the midst of this tense, exciting scene, we cut to Simon. Oh yay. Once again, he calls Clary and since she has better things to do than deal with his ass, she doesn’t answer. He has a meltdown all over Clary’s voicemail, hallucinates Camille, and punches his mirror.

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While running through the tunnels, Clary suddenly needs a break. Isabelle scouts ahead so Clary and Jace can have a heart-to-heart and more forced sexual tension. They catch up to Isabelle to see that her demon necklace has lit up like a Christmas tree. While they search for the demons, a giant scorpion thing jumps right on Jace’s face. Go scorpion, go! Unfortunately, Jace kills it. Jace informs Clary that the scorpion thing is a Shax (sp?) demon, and they’re excellent trackers. He makes Clary go on ahead while he and Isabelle hold off the scorpions.

Clary runs down a tunnel, but she is soon cornered by more scorpions. In a panic, she retrieves the card and is now able to pull the Mortal Cup out of it. Using the cup, she pushes back the scorpions.

This is the same face I make when I get a brand-new bottle of Johnnie Walker.

This is the same face I make when I get a brand-new bottle of Johnnie Walker.

Back at Simon’s place, his mother and sister figure Simon must have the munchies and bring him takeout. They find his room ransacked (he did it himself during his meltdown) and see that he has slipped out through the window. Um, how are these two not calling the authorities on him? He has clearly demonstrated that he’s a danger to himself and has been a danger to others through most of this series. How are his mother and sister not more freaked out by him breaking the desk? I swear to God the citizens of NYC here are as willfully oblivious to danger as the residents of Sunnydale.

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In the tunnels, Clary runs back the way she came. She intercepts Jace, who tries to get her to give him the cup. Clary realizes that he’s a shapeshifter and kills him. Shortly afterward, Luke and Alec show up, and Luke shares a childhood memory to confirm to Clary that it’s really him.

Clary and Alec return to the Institute to find Jace and Isabelle already there. Clary runs up to Jace and they make out in front of everyone while a pop song swells in the background. It’s shot in a way that vaguely reminds me of the scene in Alias where Sydney and Vaughn make out after raiding SD-6, except that scene is way hotter and is not in a crappy TV show. Meanwhile, Simon’s back at the DuMort, where Camille finds him. She informs him that her blood is running through his veins, causing his symptoms, but he’s not a vampire… yet. The episode ends just as she lunges at him. Good, I hope he dies.

I also make this face at the prospect of recapping another Simon episode.

I also make this face at the prospect of recapping another Simon episode.

But he won’t, because knowing my luck, this motherfucker has more lives than Irina Derevko.

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