Creator: Leigh Bardugo
Director: Jeremy Webb
Starring: Jessie Mei Li, Archie Renaux, Freddy Carter, Amita Suman, Kit Young, Ben Barnes and Zoë Wanamaker
The penultimate episode of Shadow And Bone Season 1 (Episode 7) shows us how the fold was created in a flashback which I didn’t expect. While Alina searches for her stag and the crows decide it’s time to go home.
THE REAL TRUTH ABOUT THE CREATION OF THE FOLD IS REVEALED IN SHADOW AND BONE EPISODE 7
At the beginning of this episode, get to witness the events leading up to the creation of the fold which are quite surprising. We know Kirigan (Ben Barnes) aka The Black Heretic created the fold about 400 years ago; this flashback puts a different spin on what we already knew. We are shown that the Grisha are being haunted and fleeing for their lives. We discover Kirigan was in love with a healer called Luda but her death was pretty much the final straw for him. Which led him to find the spell to take control of the King’s army which backfired thus the fold is created.
Now it’s hard to know how we should feel towards Kirigan after watching those events. This man was tired of his people being hunted and killed so he is angry combined with grief for losing the woman he appeared to care greatly for. He has always wanted ‘his people’ as he would call them to be safe. Yet on the other hand, this guy goes against his mother’s warning and almost looks down upon other Grisha as he is very well aware of the power he possesses. The creation of the fold is the aftermath of Kirigan attempting to save lives but also the need for power that consumes him.
BEN BARNES DOESN’T DISAPPOINT AS WE SEE THE REAL DARK SIDE TO KIRIGAN
We really get to see the dark side to Kirigan in this episode which is a joy to watch, however, it is hard to know if we can trust what he says. He appears to have great feelings for Alina (Jessie Mei Li) yet tricks and lies to her to get what he wants. A moment that sticks with me is when Alina tells Kirigan “you don’t care who suffers as long as you win”, to which Kirigan replies with “fine make me your villain”. This is just an example of some great dialogue that really makes you hang onto every word they are saying. Also, it shows how Kirigan’s intentions may be good but his execution and the way he’s gone about things are completely wrong.
Ben Barnes is really strong as Kirigan takes centre stage; he works so well with everyone in every scene. I really liked the dynamic between Barnes and Zoë Wanamaker during the flashback, both actors bounce off one another really well and it feels like a real mother and son dynamic. However, a scene I think needs real recognition is between Archie Renaux and Barnes. Mal (Archie Renaux) is chained up and Kirigan comes to visit his prisoner. We see two really strong characters face off one another while trying to convince the other that Alina is meant for them just with words. In this scene, you can feel the testosterone between these two characters as the tension rises. Both actors are just faultless in this scene.
ALINA REALISES WHO HER TRUE FRIENDS ARE BUT COULD WE SEE A DARKER SIDE TO THIS CHARACTER IN FUTURE SEASONS
Alina is put in a really difficult situation in this episode as she falls for another of Kirigan’s traps to save Mal’s life and finally comes to realise that Genya (Daisy Head) isn’t the friend she thought she was. I really wanted and enjoyed the friendship between Alina and Genya; it felt very real. Yet I think we all forgot that it was her job to be there for Alina but also Kirigan’s spy. It was interesting to get to know more about her past and the trauma she has gone through. I’ve always liked Daisy Head’s performance but in the moment that Genya’s past is revealed, I didn’t feel as connected to the character as I hoped I would. It fell a bit flat compared to everything we had already dealt with in that episode, which is a shame.
Jessie Mei Li speech where she acknowledges her feelings for Kirigan and believes he did care for her is heartbreaking and powerful. They could have been great together but he never gave her a choice. Alina is defiantly hurt by Kirigan’s lies to her but has it sunk in what other hurtful acts he has done to others. The scene between both characters hits hard to watch as at one time we wanted these two together but now the real truths are coming out. Many fans have hinted at the possibility of Alina’s dark side, well now that both Alina and Kirigan are connected through the Stag’s bones who’s to say that some of Kirigan’s darkness may not seep into Alina’s pure heart. Something to look out for in possible future seasons.
OURS CROWS DECIDE ITS TIME TO GO HOME BUT WILL OUR TEAM MAKE IT?
Now let’s talk about our Crows. Everything has gone wrong, Inej (Amita Suman) is injured and the money is pretty much gone so it’s time to go back to Ketterdam. I felt bad for the Crows because they had worked so hard and I feel bad just seeing them give up. Jesper (Kit Young) is the comedic relief in every episode which we need and Young has perfect comedic timing to get it right every time, he really steals the show at times.
While Freddy Carter delivers an excellent and heartfelt performance in this episode. Kaz (Freddy Carter) is defeated and losing Inej so he admits he was wrong. In the scene between Carter and Suman it feels like we are watching Kaz open up and bare his soul to Inej. It feels really genuine as we see a bit of a softer side to this character. It has been hinted since the first episode of a potential romance between Kaz and Inej and it is obvious that they care deeply for one another by their actions towards one another. Therefore, we are hanging onto to see when they feel ready to verbally reveal their feelings to one another. This scene just works really well and I liked, in particular, Kaz’s speech about how he has faith in his people (Inej and Jesper) not religion.
The Unsea is a perfect penultimate episode as all the stakes have been raised as the boat with all our characters sail into the fold at the end of the episode. Will the fold be destroyed or has Kirigan got another plan up his sleeve? This episode provided some of the best performances from the cast yet, we got some really heartfelt moments with little humorous moments to balance the episode out. We have learnt more about the fold and the darkling himself – he is has become corrupted with the need for power, so I for one am excited to see what the final episode will bring!
What did you make of Shadow And Bone Season 1 Episode 7?
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