Exposition overload, anyone?
After two exciting episodes that moved Clary's story forward, Shadowhunters Season 1 Episode 4 took one enormously huge step backward.
This hour was one long, slow-moving yawn fest where we learned that Simon may be turning into a vampire, Alec has deep feelings for Jace, and big bad Valentine has the lamest army ever in the world of big bads.
Let's start with Valentine. We haven't seen a lot of him during this series, but we know that he is the man to be feared. The Mortal Cup must be found before this guy gets his hands on it, because who knows what terrible things he will do.
After this hour, though, I have to wonder whether or not his membership to the Big Bad Club has been revoked, and he's just faking everyone out, because Valentine is the worst Big Bad I have ever seen on television.
Every time he sends members of his army to hunt down Clary, they are easily defeated.
One shows up at the downworlder's party, and not only is he quickly detected, he is easily taken down by Alec's arrows. You would think that Valentine's men would have a little more muscle to them.
Later, at Magnus' warehouse lair, they are once again quickly defeated. What an embarrassment. Valentine should hang his head in shame!
How is it even believable that anyone would be afraid of someone who can't even surround himself with men who can defeat simple shadowhunters and demons?
What I don't get is doesn't Valentine realize what's happening? Wouldn't he go and try to find himself some more durable and evil-minded men? It shouldn't be this easy.
If I was a shadowhunter, I would be laughing at this guy, not shaking in fear.
But lame is the word of the hour.
Every character over explaining not only the what, but the why of what was happening in every single scene? Mind-numbingly lame.
Simon storming off and leaving the Institute? Lame nerd fit.
Clary stumbling over her words after seeing a shirtless Jace? Lame girly moment.
Jace smirking at her embarrassment? Arrogantly lame boy moment.
Izzy wishing she was as flat chested as Clary? Awkwardly lame, especially when Clary looked down at her not-so-flat chest.
Clary's scream as Jace drew the rune on her? Stupidly, laughably lame.
Alec becoming so embarrassed about the memory the memory demon extracted from him? Unbelievably lame.
For a guy who is all about doing the right thing, it doesn't seem like him to break the circle just because his secret love for Jace was revealed.
How can someone even infer that from that memory? Of course, he loves Jace most. He's his parabatai!
Yes, I know Alec is gay, but there had to be a better way to reveal that morsel of information than putting the whole team at risk.
After all, wasn't it obvious in his interactions with Magnus that he might be swinging the other way?
Speaking of Magnus, he truly was the highlight of the hour, even though he too fell into exposition hell. Still, he added some much needed flirtatious fun to an otherwise boring episode. Could he be more obvious about his instant attraction to Alec? I loved every moment of it.
About Alec, is he more of a flower or cologne man?Magnus
It's a sad thing when commercials are more exciting than the show you're watching.
Oh, and just in case you didn't catch the "duh" moment of the hour: Simon has a taste for blood. Is he turning into a vampire? Duh.
What did you think about "Raising Hell"? If your brain hasn't turned to mush, let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Remember, you can watch Shadowhunters online anytime, right here at TV Fanatic!
Lisa Babick is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.