Creator: Leigh Bardugo
Director: Dan Lui
Starring: Jessie Mei Li, Archie Renaux, Freddy Carter, Amita Suman, Kit Young, Ben Barnes and Zoë Wanamaker
Alina (Jessie Mei Li) seeks the Kings blessing and we watch Alina’s first full day at the Little Palace, which could have gone better. She discovers the pressures her new role has with it. While Kaz (Freddy Carter) and his crew finally find a way to cross The Fold almost in one piece.
ALINA IS STRUGGLING TO ADAPT AND STRUGGLING TO COPE WITHOUT MAL
Alina now has a huge new responsibility with the new title of Sun Summoner. Now living a new home full of others like herself, you would think that Alina would feel more at home than ever. She is now regarded as a literal saint and everyone’s saviour.
There is a huge amount of pressure put onto Alina as everyone has high expectations on what she should be doing. The issue is Alina doesn’t believe that she is the Sun Summoner. We get a sense of real conflict Alina is dealing with in her final monologue at the end of the episode. The ending monologue is really powerful and emotional. She has a new huge responsibility that she wasn’t expecting, as a myth is now reality and now all eyes are on her waiting for her to defeat The Fold.
Throughout this episode, Alina is seen writing letters to Mal (Archie Renaux). All Alina wants is to be with Mal which shows how much these characters depend on one another. Mal has always been an important person in Alina’s life and is also the reason why Alina is holding back from this new life. Mal isn’t there and has been left in the dark about what has happened to his best friend. However, it’s going to be interesting discovering who is Alina Starkov without Mal and the First Army together. What will be the reason for Alina to start believing in herself and what kind of woman will she become?
HOW IS THE BONESMITH IMPORTANT TO ALINA?
Alina is having recurring dreams about a stag; this may be linked to the story of The Bonesmith. In a conversation between Alina and the Apparat (Kevin Eldon), the Apparat tells the story of the first Grisha in recorded history. The Bonesmith created animals from the bones of his fingers which were filled with Grisha powers, as he knew that the Grisha would be persecuted he left the animals as gifts. It was discovered that by killing one of these animals and them taking a piece of the animal and making it part of the Grisha’s body will amplify their power. As a result, we can assume that Alina’s dreams are foreshadowing what may happen in future episodes to help boost her power when taking on The Fold. This story and the images of the stag may appear random but they have a bigger significance than they initially appear.
The Darkling disappears in this episode and doesn’t appear to give any support to Alina on her first day, apart from telling her to “be ready”. We learn that Kirigan is an amplifier, which means he can make other Grisha more powerful thus this is how he helped Alina show her power to the King. Little lines like this give us a lot of information which will be more important later on in the season.
THE CROWS FINALLY MAKE THEIR WAY ACROSS THE FOLD
Meanwhile, Kaz and his crew cross the fold with the Conductor, but not everything goes exactly to plan. However, it has to be said that Kaz doesn’t give up easily. Each member of the crows have their own unique abilities which make them work so well together. In each episode so far, a new obstacle has gotten in their way but every time they find a way to carry on.
Before their journey, Inej (Amita Suman) takes a moment to search the memorial boards to find the names of her parents and brother, whose fates are still unknown to her. It is great to see that this character has a vulnerable side. This little scene adds onto what we learnt in the last episode, which is nice to see that information is being carried on throughout the episodes not being left behind.
JESPER TAKES THE SPOTLIGHT IN THIS EPISODE
Jesper (Kit Young) is becoming my favourite character to watch in this season so far. I loved watching Jesper fighting off the Volcra while holding a goat. The scene where Kaz, Inej, Jesper and the Conductor are all stuck on the train while Volcra attack in the fold, is intense and we wonder how on earth are these characters going to survive. Yet the most unexpected thing happens, Jesper begins to freak out and told to hold onto the goat which I found hilarious. While everyone else is praying, he is just holding onto a goat and enjoying its softness and cuteness. Then we think the end is upon them but Jesper full of confidence while holding onto his goat shoots all the Volcra perfectly so he and all his friends can escape. I found this scene extremely intense and Jesper is so funny to watch, it feels so random for Jesper to be just holding a goat yet being heroic but it works so well. This is down to a great script and fantastic casting, Young as Jesper is just the perfect choice.
NEW FACES TO KEEP AN EYE ON
We meet many new characters in this episode such as Genya (Daisy Head) a Grisha with tailoring abilities who was gifted to the Queen by Kirigan (Ben Barnes). She can temporarily alter people’s appearances to create beauty by eliminating flaws like scars and injuries. There is potential for friendship to blossom between Genya and Alina which I’m looking forward to see.
We also meet Marie (Jasmine Blackborow) a fire Grisha and Nadia (Gabrielle Brooks) a wind Grisha; two very kind but over the top woman who also live at the palace. They appear very nice ladies who want to make Alina comfortable but really makes Alina feel more out of place and isolated. Zoya (Sujaya Dagupta) also helps in alienating Alina; she is jealous of the attention Alina is now receiving as her position among the Grisha is changing and she is losing Kirigan’s favour.
The Apparat is the King’s spiritual advisor and priest who I found to come across as really creepy to watch but delivers some really important plot points. Finally, we briefly meet Baghra (Zoë Wanamaker) an elderly woman who trains the Grisha to help them harness their abilities. It’ll be interesting to see the dynamic between Jessie Mei Li and Zoë Wanamaker in upcoming episodes.
THE DRUSKELLE ARE BACK IN THIS EPISODE
In the previous episode, we are introduced to the Druskelle and in this episode, we get another insight into what they are up to. We watch a rebellious heartrending Grisha called Nina (Danielle Galligan) who opposes mandatory conscription and believes everyone should have their own choice. Nina gets kidnapped by the Druskelle and put onto a ship bound for Fjerda. The Fjerdan society is more technologically advanced than Ravka. Fjerdans believe all Grisha is witchcraft. As a result, the Druskelle is taking the Nina to Fjerda for her to be punished I.e.: executed.
Nina meets Mattias (Calahan Skogman), a soldier on the ship; these are two quite important characters from the book series that many fans didn’t think we would get to see so soon. Therefore, as long as we carry on following the books, we should keep an eye on these two characters.
EPISODE 3 REVEALS NEW CHARACTERS AND BIG PLOT POINTS
In this episode, we got a sense of the real pressures that have been forced upon Alina and we see she is struggling to cope without Mal by her side. I’m looking forward to seeing this character grow and become her own person. This show has done an amazing job with casting and everyone seems perfectly cast. Lots of new faces have appeared in this episode and lots of important plot points have been revealed. This is a big episode which has a big impact and as another revolution is brewing in West Ravka; it’ll be interesting to see how our characters are drawn into this predicament.
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