A new villain, Lilith, setting her plan into motion and the most awkward double date in the history of awkward double dates – we really were in for a treat this week. Here’s our recap of episode 3×02 “The Powers That Be”.
Week two and having Shadowhunters back on our screens still feels kinda odd. That hiatus really was way longer than it should have been. But we couldn’t be more excited that we’re getting new episodes every week again.
As we saw from the season premiere, there is a new High Warlock in town whom we finally got to meet this week. His name is Lorenzo Rey, he is played by Javier Muñoz (best known for his role in the musical Hamilton as Alexander Hamilton) – and he is just as well dressed as his predecessor (seriously, is having a killer fashion sense one of the requirements in order to apply for this job?).
Apart from being the second best-dressed warlock we’ve seen so far, Lorenzo also seems to love parties just as much as Magnus does. Although that’s about it with things that these two have in common – besides the fact that they hate each other. From the moment they meet at the party, you can tell how much they despise one another, even though they keep it civil to keep up appearances. They both have a reputation to uphold, after all.
Thankfully, Lorenzo leaves soon after that unamiable reunion and Magnus gets to catch up with his good friend Catarina – while Alec gets to play with Madzie, who accompanied her foster mom to the party. We loved seeing the four of them sharing a scene for once – even though that little rant Madzie interrupted would sure have been funny to listen in to as well. But we can’t have Magnus cursing in front of a little kid, can we?
Nonetheless, we love Lorenzo already. Despite his rocky relationship with Magnus, he seems like a really cool character who will certainly bring some exciting new twists and turns to this season. What’s also very interesting about him is that he doesn’t seem necessarily evil – skeptical, critical and absolutely nowhere near fond of Magnus, sure, but not entirely vicious. We will have to see how his storyline develops in future episodes, but we could totally see him simply as an opponent to Magnus, without an evil master plan to end the entire Shadow World. However his arc develops in the future, we absolutely can’t wait to see Lorenzo again. Javier and Harry absolutely killed the scenes they shared and we love the new dynamic that Lorenzo brings into the show. Javier did an amazing job bringing Lorenzo to life, we adore this elegant, yet somewhat shady new warlock and we can’t wait to see him again soon… even if that will probably mean more trouble for Magnus.
With a solid total of 18 minutes of Malec scenes, this episode certainly was a dream for any Malec shipper out there – but fans of the other couples were not disappointed either. We actually got a really sweet Saia scene pretty early on in the episode. After talking out what happened at the Seelie Court, the two of them seem stronger than ever. The plot catches up with them at the Jade Wolf, where Simon is helping Maia study by quizzing her about marine biology terms. After all the trouble these two went through at the end of season two, it was so great to see them just hang out and enjoy spending their time together in an attempt at bringing some normalcy back into their relationship.
Speaking of normalcy, Simon and Maia are not the only ones trying to make their relationship more mundane again; Clary and Jace are as well. With everything going on, Clary barely has the time to take a few hours to herself and do what she loves – so watching her drawing again was a really nice moment. Same goes for Jace interrupting Clary’s downtime and asking her out on a date. They made a lot of progress in this episode relationship-wise, which was a nice change from all the drama and heartache they went through before that.
The world’s worst secret agents
Last week’s season premiere already hinted at it and this week’s episode emphasized it once more: Isabelle Lightwood is back on track. Her new job as the Institute’s weapons master really suits her. It brings out a new confident side of her, which we loved. Izzy was always a very self-confident character, but she did a lot of growing up over the past two seasons and with her yin fen addiction finally out of the way, this more adult side finally gets some focus.
But don’t worry, her easy-going, flirty self is by no means gone for good. We actually see that just a few moments later, when Jace asks Izzy for dating advice. First she tells him to ask Alec (“Magnus and Alec have been to every restaurant in New York” and we love that thought!), but eventually she helps him out anyway. She may be the Institute’s new weapons master, but if Izzy seems to enjoy one thing – it’s matchmaking. Especially if her brothers are involved.
Flash forward to Brooklyn and another adorable Malec scene. Todd Slavkin once said on twitter that this season would have plenty of domestic Malec moments and it seems like he is keeping his promise. The morning after Lorenzo’s party is certainly one of the most domestic Malec scenes we’ve had so far and we can’t get enough of these little, private moments where it’s just Alec and Magnus without imminent threats or lots of responsibilities waiting.
Unfortunately, their perfect little bubble gets destroyed not long after, when Lorenzo shows up at Magnus’ doorstep, furious about what happened at the party the previous night and blaming the Greater Demon Asmodeus for it – who, as Magnus tells Alec after Lorenzo was done ranting and left – is Magnus’ father.
We’ve said this last week already, but can you believe how far they’ve come?
Magnus is obviously struggling with letting other people in on his past and especially his father, but he tells Alec nonetheless because he trusts him not to use this information to hurt him. Unsurprisingly, Alec reacts just the way he should, all understanding and sweet about it. If Magnus and Alec in season three are not the ultimate couple goals to end all other couple goals, we don’t know who else is.
Not only are they couple goals, but this week, they officially turned into partners in crime as well – quite literally. In order to find out about who really corrupted the ley lines, Magnus needs to get to Lorenzo’s house and investigate them himself. Since he can’t exactly portal in without Lorenzo noticing, Alec suggests they try the old-fashioned way. Not by breaking in – come on, this is Alec Lightwood we’re talking about – but by something similar.
As Head of the Institute, he has to make sure that all the Nephilim and all the Downworlders are safe, right? So it’s only fair that he pays Lorenzo a visit to hear his side of the story. The fact that Magnus tags along and Alec distracts Lorenzo long enough to unlock the backdoor to the garden so Magnus can sneak into Lorenzo’s house? Mere details. Alec Lightwood would never —
Well, turns out he would, at least when his boyfriend is involved, which leads to some of the funniest scenes we’ve seen on Shadowhunters so far, all thanks to Javi, Matt and Harry. We loved watching Alec try – and surprisingly succeed, even though he still sucks at socializing – talking Lorenzo into believing that the only reason he’s here is to hear his side of the story (and admire his ceilings and ancient antiquities while he’s at it). Meanwhile, we cracked up watching Magnus hide behind the couch while vividly gesturing at Alec and letting him know that he should wrap it up and get Lorenzo out of the way so he can finally get to work with the ley lines. The eye-roll when Alec suggests a house tour, since he loves the impressive ceilings and ancient antiquities of Lorenzo’s house so much, was just the cherry on top – actually, we’ve never seen a scene that screamed “married” as much as this one. However, let’s be glad that they never attempted a career as secret agents. They would have blown their covers more often than not.
Lilith makes her next step
From slightly embarrassing conversations between practical strangers, we then move onto the very awkward double dates of exes and their new partners. Simon and Jace happen to take out their respective girlfriends to the same restaurant and since that restaurant is packed, they end up at the same table. Tons of uncomfortable moments and weird conversations ensue – we had a blast watching those scenes, but we were really glad for them when that date finally came to an end.
After they parted ways with Simon and Maia, Jace and Clary end up having a really sweet heart-to-heart, where Jace confesses his feelings for Clary and tells her just how much she means to him. It was so nice to see them try and rekindle their relationship, especially after everything they went through. “A work in progress” is probably a very fitting term to describe their relationship right now, but it’s a work in progress with a lot of potential.
After Clary and Jace return from their date, it’s back to business for all of them. The plot takes a little detour to the Church of Talto, and we get to catch up with Lilith, who still seems very busy getting people to join her and bleeding them out over her altar as a welcoming ritual (Seriously, this is getting creepy!). We also learn that she is the one responsible for corrupting the warlock’s magic, as she has been flooding the ley lines with demonic energy in order to perform her ritual.
Visit from an old friend
Back at the Institute, Alec, Magnus and the rest of the squad still have no clue about who they are dealing with. But they try to come up with a plan to stop them, especially since Magnus confirmed it was definitely not Asmodeus’ magic that caused all the problems.
They have what seems to be the entire Institute gathered up in the ops center – and that includes our dear friend Raj. We may not have seen him in a while now, but as Raj proves soon enough, he hasn’t changed one bit – he still has a talent for being in the wrong place at the wrong time and saying the completely wrong things in precarious situations.
So, of course, in true Raj fashion, the first thing he does after coming back is make a stupid decision. A very stupid one to be honest. As much as we love Raj, sometimes we really wonder what’s going on in his head that makes him think locking his boss out of the Institute’s security system is something that you should do.
Lucky for Raj, Alec and Magnus manage to fix the ley lines even without access to the security system – and even without blowing up the Institute. Things really do not go Raj’s way this week – not only did Alec and Magnus prove him wrong, but as a consequence to messing with him, Alec sends him on a little “character building” trip to Wrangel Island just off the coast of Russia. Well, expanding your horizons by travelling to foreign places can never hurt, we suppose.
After the imminent threat of New York being taken over by strong demonic power is repelled, you might think that they get to have a little break but no, not this time. The only ones who do get a breather – if discussing strategy and talking Magnus out of thinking that he is less of a person because of his father can be considered winding down – are Alec and Magnus.
Jace is still having trouble sleeping, as he is haunted by those vicious nightmares where he sees himself killing Clary.
And Simon is not really in a good place either, as we learn in one of the last scenes of the episode. Some of the pack members are trying to make him move out of the boat house. Simon refuses and the conflict gets quite heated, up to the point where one of the wolves tries to attack Simon with a baseball bat – resulting to Simon not getting hurt at all and the guy who attacked him getting thrown back against a wall instead. Looks like that mark the Seelie Queen branded him with in 3×01 does have a purpose – a purpose that is just as wicked as the queen herself. We can’t wait to find out more about what that mark means and what it can do.
Strong follow-up to the premiere
This week’s episode had its fair share of new plot developments, but it also had most of the characters go through quite some character growth. With Jace and Clary taking the first step towards finally talking things out and Magnus opening up to Alec about his father, they got a lot of emotional baggage out of the way, which we loved. Nevertheless there was still quite some action going on – the drama at Lorenzo’s party, Magnus and Alec fighting against Lilith’s powers, Simon’s fight with the wolves. “The Powers That Be” constantly kept us on our toes, mixed with some adorable scenes with our favorite couples. After all the teasing that the writers and showrunners did on twitter about this episode, our expectations were high – and it certainly delivered. We’re excited for next week.
Journalism student with a soft spot for fantasy novels and dark chocolate. I’ve always loved to write and hope to make a living from it one day. On ShumDario News, I write articles for the website and help with updating and projects.