Shadowhunters: Mu Shu to Go – Changing (Recap/Review)

In Shadowhunters: Mu Shu to Go Alec continues to have issues with Clary as well as a total disregard for anyone not a member of the Clave, unless it is Valentine aka Fray’s father.

 NICOLA CORREIA-DAMUDE

In Shadowhunters: Mu Shu to Go Alec continues to have issues with Clary as well as a total disregard for anyone not a member of the Clave, unless it is Valentine aka Fray’s father.  This episode is all about changing; Simon apparently turning into a vampire, Clary becoming more confident and Luke turning out to be a friend after all; a furry one.

Alec tricks Clary and Jace into giving over the portal “necklace” so he could lock it up.  Isabelle and Clary talk about Jocelyn. While the two are talking about how frustrating Isabelle’s brother is,  Maryse Lightwood, the siblings’ mother turns up. Apart from showing her displeasure with Clary “Fairchild” she tasks the Shadowhunters with seeing why the Seelies will not talk.

Maryse (Nicola Correia-Damude) orders Isabelle and Jace to go question the Seelie contact and forces Alec to watch after Clary.  None of the Shadowhunters are overly pleased with their assignments. Meanwhile Luke wants to intensify his search for Clary as she continues to obsess over her father; Valentine (Alan Van Sprang).

Alec tries to tell his parrabati how he really feels but stops when it appears that Jace will make it difficult for him to explain.  Simon heads back to Hotel DuMort and is stopped by the vampire who helped save him the last time and told to never return.

KATHERINE MCNAMARA, MATTHEW DADDARIO
Sparring and talking…rules.

Clary and Alec spar with weapons while talking about rules, Valentine and saving Fray’s mother. She reveals to her “babysitter” that her mom kept a box of her father’s at the loft.  Fray wants to go get it and as she attempts to persuade Alec, a lovestruck Magnus (Harry Shum Jr.) calls to ask Alec out for a drink. Lightwood has to cut the conversation short as Clary has left the room and Magnus is intrigued:

“Playing hard to get…”

Alaric returns to the werewolf lair and the alpha, Theo,  orders that Clary be captured and forced to reveal where the Mortal Cup is hidden. Alec catches up to Fray and tells her off for using the invisibility rune but not turning off her phone. While remonstrating her for sneaking out, Simon calls and arranges to meet his best friend and help.

Clary reveals to Alec that she knows his secret and he continues to be in denial. Valentine is still building an army, by injecting Seelie blood into volunteers and Meliorn (Jade Hassouné) talks to Isabelle and Jace but they do not like what they hear. 

Simon helps Alec and Clary sneak into her old home and her best friend is exhibiting some new traits that bother Lightwood. Simon can now see runes and he is incredibly strong. Once they enter the loft apartment, he also finds the loose floorboard where the box is hidden.

As they open the box, Alec hears a noise outside and he leaves the apartment to investigate. Once outside, he encounters a werewolf and while Alec tries to shoot it with an arrow, Clary and Simon are kidnapped by more werewolves and driven off in a black unmarked car.

KATHERINE MCNAMARA, ALBERTO ROSENDE
Clary and Simon in the Jade Wolf.

The kidnapped couple are taken to the Chinese restaurant the Jade Wolf as Jace angrily blames Alec for Clary  being taken. The two try to track her but cannot.  Clary and Simon are handcuffed and he is taken out with the threat of being ripped to shreds by the alpha female werewolf.

Clary tells the pack leader that the Mortal Cup is at her old apartment and several wolves go out to find it. Meanwhile, Simon easily breaks his bonds with his newfound strength and finds a lighter and a phone. Calling Jace he is told to create a diversion. Simon sets off the fire alarms.

Theo takes Clary out and locks her up, Luke (Isaiah Mustafa) shows up and attempts to rescue Fray but she mistrusts him and his motives. Jace and Alec arrive and knock Luke out.  Isabelle saves Simon…again:

Isabelle: “I’m getting seriously tired of saving your life.”

Simon: “I am not.”

The Shadowhunters are surrounded by the pack of werewolves and another wolf challenges the alpha male. Theo is killed by the challenger who turns out to be Luke.  Garroway is now the new leader the pack. Jace, Clary and Simon take the badly wounded werewolf off to be treated. Simon drives the little band as he is  the “only mundane with a license.”

Even though the action is heating up, Clary is no closer to saving her mother. Magnus is still infatuated with Alec who is still cannot face how he really feels about Jace. Isabelle still has a thing for Simon who is changing into something other than a mundane. On top of all these things Valentine is making changes of his own.

JORDAN HUDYMA, CHRISTIAN BAKO, ALAN VAN SPRANG
Valentine is making changes as well…

It appears that “mommy” Lightwood does not get along with her daughter Isabelle at all and that the Clave are not overly pleased with Clary Fray at all.

Shadowhunters airs Tuesdays on ABC. Tune in and get caught up in the action and the fantasy and see how Simon, and Clary, keep changing.

 

Shadowhunters: Raising Hell – Infection (Review)

After retrieving Simon from the Hotel Dumort vampire enclave last week in Shadowhunters, Raising Hell sees Clary getting closer to Jace and further away from her best friend who is now suffering from a Camille infection.

HARRY SHUM JR.

After retrieving Simon from the vampire enclave last week in Shadowhunters, this week Raising Hell sees Clary getting closer to Jace and further away from her best friend who is now suffering from a Camille infection. The vampire leader offered up vampire blood to Simon while he was a hostage and Clary’s BFF is not himself.

Infected or not, Simon offers up the first real lead that Fray has gotten; Magnus Bane.  After this transfer of information, Lewis bolts from the safety of the Shadowhunter lair. The first real gulf appears between the two and after Clary reveals that she belongs with the Shadowhunters, Simon leaves.

In order to find Magnus, who wiped Clary’s memory, Isabelle suggests throwing a Downworld rave.  The lure works and the warlock teams up with Fray and her group of protectors.  Bane falls instantly for Alec who, it seems, only has eyes for his parrabati Jace.

Valentine continues his search for both Magnus and Clary while Luke Garroway also searches for the girl. Each  are looking for the Mortal Cup.  Valentine is still based at Chernobyl and Luke is still at the precinct, but only just.

ALAN VAN SPRANG
Alan Van Spang as Valentine.

As the episode progresses, Clary learns that Magnus gave her childhood memory to a memory demon and Valentine tracks Bane down and begins killing warlocks.  Simon starts having strange urges and sees visions of Camille and blood. He also gets told off by his mother and Maureen tells Simon how she feels.

“I’d like to date you.”

This confessional moment, which doubles as a request, becomes more than a little awkward as Simon “zones” out. Upset at this lack of response Maureen leaves.

Clary finds out that Dot is dead after meeting Magnus. He explains that Valentine killed her and offers to protect Fray. She refuses just as an assassin sent by Valentine strikes and misses when Alec saves Bane. Magnus is smitten by Isabelle’s brother but leaves as Clary grabs a button off his outfit.

Jace and Alec track Magnus down, after Jace argues again with his parrabati about Clary. As the Shadowhunters arrive at the Warlock lair, Valentine’s minions are killing everyone. Fray saves a warlock child and Magnus helps to summon the memory demon.

The Shadowhunters take position around the pentagram that Clary draws to summon the demon and as it appears, each one must give up a memory of the one they love most. Despite being warned not to break contact, when Alec’s memory turns out to be of Jace, he reacts badly and lets go of Jace’s hand.

The demon begins killing Jace and Clary jumps in to kill the demon. This act also destroys Clary’s  memories that Magnus stored in the creature. Simon spends a lot of time trying to contact his friend to apologize. Later, when Clary attempt to call him, Simon ignores the call. He is on his way back to Camille.

The revelation at the demon summoning, or “hell raising,” that Alec loves Jace explains all that animosity towards Clary…he is jealous.  The male Lightwood is also apparently in denial about his true feelings and nature.

Clary now must live with losing any chance of reclaiming the memories her mother asked Magnus to take but she and Jace are even closer than before.

EMERAUDE TOUBIA
Emeraude Toubia, the sexiest Shadowhunter

Thus far in Shadowhunters Isabelle,  as played by Emeraude Toubia,  is the sexiest and most sensual character hands down.  Her character is a fashionista as well and she makes this Lightwood sister captivating,  full stop.

Harry Shum Jr. plays Magnus with a fey self awareness that makes his character interesting and vulnerable.  Bane is world weary in some areas, offering sage advice to Alec after the  Jace demon revelation  that “it’s nothing to be ashamed of,” yet is still able to be swept off his feet by the male Lightwood like a giddy teenager. 

Alberto Rosende has stepped fully into vampire infection territory as his character heads unsteadily back to Camille. Dominic Sherwood convinces as the Shadowhunter who thinks “outside the box” and the guy who is steadily falling for Clary Fray.  

Alan Van Sprang gives Valentine a most impressive air of menace and danger while also conveying a sort of faded sophistication. Matthew Daddario does a good job of being the jealous parrabati who may, or may not, love Jace.

Katherine McNamara has her work cut out for her as Clary.  The young actress has to vacillate between desperation, wonder, disbelief and heroic gestures.  Not surprisingly, as it is early days yet, McNamara struggles with some nuances but never fails to keep her character interesting and earnestly vital.

MATTHEW DADDARIO, KATHERINE MCNAMARA, DOMINIC SHERWOOD
Clary and Jace being watched by Alec.

Part of the problem may be with the dialogue as written but that will obviously improve as the season moves along. Certainly with a script that includes a topical gag of David Guetta being a Downworlder…

Shadowhunters ended last week with Jace learning that he had a supporter in the vampire camp. This world is in upheaval as all search for the Mortal Cup and things should only get more interesting.

This series airs Tuesdays on ABC Freeform and one does not have to be a fan of the YA franchise by Cassandra Clare to enjoy the show.  Tune in and let the camerawork, music and editing carry along the storyline of Clary Fray in her quest to free her mother and to defeat Valentine.

Stitchers Second Season Premiere Date Set by Freeform

It is near perfect timing by ABC Freeform that they announced the premiere date of season two of the massively popular series Stitchers on Friday January 29. Freeform’s release stated that the show’s “sophomore” season will begin on March 22, 2016.

 SALLI RICHARDSON-WHITFIELD, KYLE HARRIS, EMMA ISHTA, ALLISON SCAGLIOTTI, RITESH RAJAN

It is near perfect timing by ABC Freeform that they  announced the premiere date of season two of the massively popular series Stitchers on Friday January 29. Freeform’s release stated that the  show’s “sophomore” season will begin on March 22, 2016.  MikesFilmTalk just returned from spending a day on set as the Stitchers cast and crew worked on the season finale.

Cast members were interviewed, and selfies taken (pics can be seen via mikesfilmtalk on Instagram or @mikesfilmtalk on Twitter). Every cast member was excited about the upcoming season and revealed a lot about how the new season was going to be even better than the first.

(Interviews will be appearing as the premiere date gets closer.)

Stitchers  follows Kirsten Clark (Emma Ishta) a young lady who is “stitched” into the brains of the recently deceased to access their memories.  A team of  talented colleagues, Cameron (Kyle Harris), Linus (Ritesh Rajan), Camille (Allison Scagliotti), Det. Fisher (Damon Dayoub) and head of the lab Maggie (Salli Richardson-Whitfield) all work together in the secret lab.

The first season saw relationships built and placed under strain. Secrets were  revealed about the one young woman, as well as other characters,  who could enter the minds of the dead and learn who had killed them and why. Entering memories of the deceased is just the tip of the iceberg in this secret government facility, as no one yet knows the real purpose behind the mission.

Speaking to the show’s stars and the creator Jeff Schechter it looks like season two is going to “up the stakes”  and be even more exciting than the first season.  Without going into detail, as the actual interviews will be up shortly, everyone on the show is pleased with how the series and their characters are developing.

As more answers to questions from last season are answered, more mysteries crop up as Kirsten, along with her friends and colleagues, tries to learn more about her past.  The entire cast bring their roles to life and the writing of the series allows a depth to these character that are often missing in science fiction shows.

On March 22, ABC Freeform will give fans their second look at Stitchers with a season that promises to amp up the storyline, character development and provide a number of surprises along the way.  As the cast and Jeff emphasized, this will be Stitchers 2.0.

More will be revealed in the coming weeks, like interviews with the cast and the creator Jeff.  Stitchers will air Tuesdays, do not forget to tune in and see what happens next.

IMG_3832
MIkesFilmTalk was there…More to follow.

 

Pretty Little Liars: Charlotte’s Web – The Good, the Bad, the Guilty (Recap/Review)

Pretty Little Liars follows up the midseason premiere death of Alison’s transgender sister with Charlotte’s Web, which feels a bit like “The Good, the Bad and the Guilty.”

 SHAY MITCHELL, ASHLEY BENSON, TROIAN BELLISARIO, LUCY HALE

Pretty Little Liars follows up the midseason premiere death of Alison’s transgender sister with Charlotte’s Web, which feels a bit like “The Good, the Bad and the Guilty.”  The cast are broken into the good; Hanna, the bad; Aria and Sara, and the guilty; Aria (maybe) and Ezra (equally maybe). It is revealed that the death of ‘A’ was not an easy one as Lorenzo tells the Liars that Charlotte’s neck was broken before being thrown from the church tower.

The first part of the episode spent a good amount of time trying to convince viewers of Aria’s guilt, clearly a waste of effort as the Montgomery is too slight to have lifted Charlotte let alone break her neck. The focus then shifts, only a little early on and then more so after Aria returns to Rosewood, to Ezra.

Furious that his Nicole is obviously dead and that Ali’s sister is free to roam the streets and go to church at four in the morning, this revelation occurs on the day that he and Aria see Charlotte head into the church. Rather interestingly, this means that these two were the last to see Charlotte alive…

Sidenote: Is it just this viewer or does Liam look like a younger version of Ezra?

Emily is rescued by former flower-child Sabrina (she of the “drug candy”  that got Toby in so much trouble last year) when her credit card will not work on the Hollis Medical Institute’s  parking machine. Later, it is revealed that all those hypodermic needles from the previous week’s episode must have something to do with Emily’s  mystery blood treatment.

What Em is having done is not clarified but it could have something to do with a “hepatitis” (A, B, or C). Much later Sabrina is asked not to say anything about bumping into Emily at the Institute.

Hanna finds the key to her mother’s security suite and learns that Aria lied about where she went in the wee hours when Charlotte was being murdered and Hanna was hydrating.  Apart from wondering what Aria was really up to, Hanna is more worried about Caleb meeting her latest squeeze, Jordan.

Spencer is convinced that she influenced the person who murdered Charlotte with her criminology study on the “Honeymoon Murderer.” Aria is taken off Ezra and the job of getting the next book from him is passed to Liam.

Later Aria talks her boss into letting her try again and she explains to Ezra that they will not take back the advance. He gives Aria the “first draft” of his second book. She asks him where he went the night that Charlotte was killed after they met. Ezra tells her home.

Sara Harvey shows up twice, each time with her hands covered. When Emily visits her father’s grave Harvey shows up, looking weird and not a little creepy.

Hanna proves to be quite adept at playing Nancy Drew and after finding the “incriminating” footage of Aria and Ezra, deletes the evidence.

ASHLEY BENSON
Hanna and Emily…

Aria tells the other Liars, sans Ali,  what happened on the night Charlotte was killed and it seems like now Ezra is the new suspect. Spencer then explains that she told Ezra about her murder case study, she believes that Ezra copied the murderer’s MO and killed Charlotte to keep Aria safe, or out of misplaced anger about Nicole’s death.

Spencer’s mother clarifies how she feels about her and Emily tells her dad about what happened at school and that she lost her scholarship after he died.  When Sara Harvey shows up, Em leaves.  Later flowers are put on a freshly dug grave (Charlotte’s?) and as the camera gives a POV shot of entering a limo, the drivers says, “I’m sorry for your loss.”

It never ceases to amuse at how capable Hanna is at computerized tasks, or at manipulating a CCTV security system.  Ms. Marin is not the sharpest file in the manicure set the best of times.

By the time the show ends, Alison tells Lorenzo the she believes her friends could well be responsible for Charlottes’ death; a 180 degree turn around from before.  As usual, Pretty Little Liars crams a lot of things into one episode:

A lot of “things” unsaid,  relationships that all feel a bit “mix and match” and more questions than answers.

Sidenote: Whoever did wardrobe for this episode? Hanna’s nighty looked like something Granny Smith would wear, not a 20 something fashionista.  Makeup and lighting also looked pretty shaky this week with Alison looking as though she  had been beaten about the face and eyes…

As usual kudos to the cast: Sasha Pieterse Lucy Hale, Ashley Benson, Troian Bellisario, and Shay Mitchell. Oh and for the older  fan, more Nia Peebles please.

Pretty Little Liars airs Tuesdays on Freeform. Tune in and try to keep up with all the twists and turns.

 

Shadowhunters: The Descent Into Hell is Easy (Review)

Episode two of Shadowhunters: The Descent Into Hell is Easy, finds Clary and Simon being allowed into the inner fold of the Shadowhunter’s “lair,” aka the Institute.

ALBERTO ROSENDE, DOMINIC SHERWOOD, KATHERINE MCNAMARA

Episode two of Shadowhunters: The Descent Into Hell is Easy, finds Clary and Simon being allowed into the inner fold of the Shadowhunter’s “lair,” aka the Institute.  This verse of magic, vampires, demons, warlocks and shape-shifters also includes an incredible amount of technology.  The headquarters of Jace, Isabelle and Alec may be hidden behind the derelict ruins of a building, but once the rune is lifted, “mundane” Simon and his “gal pal” Fray enter a world of high tech and magic.

Once again, not having read the books that the series is based on, it is interesting to note the dynamic between different factions.  Most notably between the Shadowhunters and the mundanes that they are pledged to save.  This episode takes up where the pilot ended, for all intents and purposes, and Simon can now see Jace, as well as the dead demon.

Fray (Katherine McNamara) and best friend Lewis (Alberto Rosende) are escorted to the Institute by Wayland (Dominic Sherwood) who then introduces the mundane buddy of Fray to Isabelle (Emeraude Toubia) and Alec (Matthew Daddario); the sibling Shadowhunters. Alec is the “leader” although he is constantly overruled by Isabelle and Jace. 

In terms of dynamic, no one in this magical verse, created by Cassandra Clare, gets along. It is a huge warring population of different individuals and groups attempting to control the world they inhabit.  Even factions that are “allies” do not get along. For example, the Shadowhunters, who are responsible for the safety of mere mundanes, treat their “charges” with contempt, derision and they are incredibly antagonistic toward them.

EMERAUDE TOUBIA
Isabelle introduces herself to Simon and offers him breakfast…

The exception to this is Isabelle who, upon meeting Simon, is apparently attracted to this mundane with an “Indie band”even if Lewis is pretty much a buzzkill. Although, compared to “Mr. Grumpy Pants” Alec Lightwood, Simon is the life of the party. Granted, Clary’s BFF thinks he is amusing, although according to Jace, that is debatable.

Personality conflicts aside, quite a lot is revealed and one character close to Clary is killed. While Fray learns that the “big bad”  Valentine (Alan Van Sprang) is “Daddy Dearest.” The newest Shadowhunter also learns, via the auspices of the Silent Brothers in the City of Bones, that Jocelyn (Maxim Roy) wiped Clary’s memory and lied to her.

The main point of interest is still The Mortal Cup, which Jocelyn has hidden.  Mother Fray is in Chernobyl, still in a trance, or coma, and Dot (Vanessa Matsuiis taken there as well. Sadly for her, she does not stay there long and after a failed escape attempt, is taken out of the picture. Whether this is permanent or not remains to be seen.

Before Dot is removed, Magnus (Harry Shum Jr.) takes all his people and bolts, Dorothy  refuses to leave and is caught as a result, which is how she ends up in Chernobyl. The City of Bones and the Silent Brothers  become the next destination for the Shadowhunters and their “plus-one.

Sidenote: It is a nice touch, and a nod to the 2013 film “The Immoral Instruments:City of Bones,” that actor Stephen R. Hart is used to reprise his role of Brother Jeremiah here in this second episode of Shadowhunters.

Clary and Jace enter the city, to speak with the Silent Brothers, leaving Simon, Isabelle and Alec behind.  Jace tells Lewis that if he enters the City of Bones he will, as a mundane, die instantly. Simon, after being lied to about the runes at the Institutes, argues:

“No mundanes allowed, just like in the training room, right? Wrong! I’ve seen every horror movie ever made and the funny best friend who gets left behind… dead man.”  [Isabelle laughs]

Jace: “You’re not that funny.”

One of the more amusing exchanges in the series thus far and it opens up the possibility that more of these funny moments  might become a mainstay in this very serious shadow world.

Alec refuses to look after Simon, so Isabelle volunteers while Clary and Jace go to see the “brothers.” Once inside the area, Brother Jeremiah makes Jace step back and a dangling sword restores part of Fray’s memory.

STEPHEN HART, KATHERINE MCNAMARA
Clary leaning an unfortunate truth.

Sidenote: Once again, not having read the source books, it is not known whether or not Clary Fray ends up with a  Harry Potter type scar on her forehead from the memory sword, (It may not be a lightning bolt but she does end up with a scar nonetheless) but it certainly seems that way…

By the end of this second episode of Shadowhunters Clary finds out that Valentine is her father (“Clary I am your father…”) the viewers learn more about family friend and cop Luke Garroway (Isaiah Mustafa), Dot dies and Simon is kidnapped by vampires who will trade the mundane for the cup.

Shadowhunters looks sharp, dark and intricate. It is a world where each faction fights the other and McNamara plays the plucky new hero who does not have enough memories to help her to fight.  The series airs Tuesdays on ABC Freeform, tune in and watch this catch YA program.