Everything we've waited for has come down to this moment: Valentine has the three Mortal Instruments.
After two seasons of watching Clary's journey of becoming a Shadowhunter and her father's unrelenting goal, their worlds reached their climax on Shadowhunters Season 2 Episode 20. Someone died, and the other got their wish.
But was it worth it?
Shadowhunters Season 2, as a whole, was an emotionally-filled, character-driven thrill ride. And I loved it.
At times the characters' decisions were frustrating, but that may be due to it being grounded in their reality. Character development was a big focus, and we learned so much about their motivations, their history, and their wants.
In fact, it helped to understand why people acted a certain way and made frustrating decisions/mistakes. (Looking at you, Clary and Simon.)
The acting improved with the cast reaching great moments. And the changes made to the props, the title sequence and the overall tone made this a more mature show. Todd Slavkin, David Swimmer, and Cassandra Clare did a great job updating us for Shadowhunters Season 2.
Valentine is dead. It took two seasons for the Big Bad to be defeated, and it was a big fight.
I'm not sad to see the character go; villains do eventually fall. However, Alan Van Sprang's charisma and menacing nature will be missed. He was a terrifying villain these last two seasons.
The next person to ascend the evil throne will have some big shoes to fill.
Valentine: Oh good, you're awake. Just in time to see history being made.
Clary: You killed Jace. How could you?!
Valentine: He certainly would've stopped me if I hadn't. Of course, I love that boy, just like I love Jocelyn. See, their deaths were necessary sacrifices if I'm gonna save humanity.
Clary: Don't lie to me. You've never loved anyone but yourself.
Valentine: If that were true, then why do you think I've kept you alive?
Clary being the one to vanquish Valentine was the perfect end to their story.
On Shadowhunters Season 1 Episode 1, she knew nothing about her father or the life hidden from her. After all these adventures, it led her to this moment to fight Valentine. The second she stopped him was one of Clary's strongest moments.
She had the strength to stop her family. He is her last living connection, after all.
I love that their fight didn't have background music. The complete silence made the scene more grave and tense as they battled on the beach. This wasn't just another enemy...it was her father.
"Clace" lives on, and it needed to happen.
As I previously discussed on Shadowhunters Season 2 Episode 19, it's taken two seasons for these two to get together. We can't have it end this quickly. Let them enjoy being in a couple for a while.
With that being said, did anyone else hope Clary's wish was broader?
Sure, she got Jace back, but MANY people were killed because of Valentine and Jonathan. Why didn't she spread the love? The angel didn't explain any set parameters, but we can ignore this for the heat of the moment thing.
Like, come on! Jace was just brutally murdered moments before. She was heartbroken and needed him back.
Jace: I'm so sorry, Clary.
Clary: Okay, hold your breath, okay. Don't say anything. You need your strength. It's gonna be okay. It's gonna be okay.
Jace: I love you.
Clary: Don't close your eyes. Jace, don't close your eyes. Stay with me. Stay with me please. Just look at me...just look at me.
What consequences do you think will happen to Jace since he was brought back?
We saw him collapsing outside the bar, and that definitely isn't a good sign. There must be a price to pay when calling on the angel Raziel to bring someone back. Hopefully, he's not evil, but this looks like a health matter instead.
As much as I love the Seelie Queen character, she was all over the place on Shadowhunters Season 2 Episode 20.
She was traitorous and deceptive one minute but then became serene and hospitable the next. The Queen is a hard character to define. You never truly know her motives.
I had expected her to be squarely on the side of evil after teaming up with Valentine and then kidnapping Maia. However, none of it was connected. It's all about getting Simon and playing the middle.
Now that Simon returned to the Seelie Queen, what do you think was part of his deal? It's something to do with Maia's safety, but there must be a catch here.
Seelie Queen: Simon is quite valiant and chivalrous, unlike any of the other night children I've come to known. You're all free to leave. My servant will escort you out of the court to safety.
[She reveals a glowing orb]
Luke: What's the catch?
Seelie Queen: What makes you think there is one?
Simon: Luke, let's just go.
Luke: Nothing ever comes for free. You never do anything out of the kindness of your heart. Hell, you were gonna sell the entire Downworld...
Maia: Let's just get out of here while we still can.
Seelie Queen: She's a smart one, you should listen to her. Before I change my mind.
The Seelie realm looked extra gorgeous on "Beside Still Waters." Applause for the set designers.
Sure, this isn't the first time we've had scenes in the realm, but it felt like there was something extra special. Falling petals, the dramatically long dining table and the Queen's new persona added to the fairytale-like tone.
And the mix of pitch black darkness and light in the Wonder Forest looked visually stunning. The place was clearly dangerous, and it's just a forest, but it held a spooky yet fascinating vibe.
Did anyone else think Magnus was childish in "Beside Still Waters"? It was full on petty.
People needed his help, and all he could do was snark. Not only did Simon and Luke seek out his help to find a missing Maia, but Alec needed his help to save New York City.
What if Maia had gotten hurt or people died? He would've regretted his actions.
I used to wonder if his problems with Alec stemmed from Alec's duty to the Shadowhunters. But after this, his scorned side made me second-guess that.
I'm glad he was able to put his ego aside and close the portal; they wouldn't have been able to do so without him. Magnus is a powerful warlock, and he's constantly proving why he's the High Warlock of Brooklyn.
Alec: Magnus, I...I don't think I can live without you.
Magnus: I thought I had to choose between you and the Downworld, but I don't. A wise man once told me relationships take effort.
Alec: That was an understatement.
Magnus: You know what's not an understatement...
"Malec" is back together. Congrats to all the shippers out there. You got your couple again!
It's great to see these two work it out. However, did they really fix their issues? All that was discussed was that Alec can't live without Magnus and relationships take work.
Sure, this is all true, but they didn't solve anything. Both Alec and Magnus are duty-bound to their factions; they need to both accept this, or it will cause issues later on. Hopefully, they've truly overcome this for Shadowhunters Season 3.
Ollie has confronted Luke about the truth. She knows he's a werewolf. What is she going to do with this?
I don't think he'll try to wipe her memory again. He's tried once, and it apparently didn't stick; he has to live with this. She seems like an easygoing and trustworthy person to Luke so far.
My guess is that she becomes his Mundane ally. However, her girlfriend also knows the truth as well. We may need hope that SHE doesn't spill the beans to anyone.
The special effects were pretty good on Shadowhunters Season 2 Episode 20. The editors saved the best for last for the season finale. Good job, team.
The Edom portal from Jonathan, Clary creating a portal in broad daylight, and the wraith demons were just some of the visual treats.
I loved the battle sequence in the city and on the beach. This is one of the few times in a while that the Shadowhunters world gets to explore real life and their effect alongside the Mundanes.
Don't get me wrong, I've liked a lot of the locations, like at the Institute and Idris. But, it's nice to see our favorite group bring their duties outright in downtown daylight. Especially during rush hour.
Jace: How could you side with him?
Malakai: There's only one side...the side of the angels. Valentine is only doing what the Clave has been trying to accomplish for centuries: eradicate demons.
Clary: No! No, the angels would never be in favor of killing millions of innocent Downworlders along with demons.
Malakai: When Razeal created the first Shadowhunter, there was no such thing as Downworlders. But over the centuries, disgusting half-breeds emerged. Warlocks, vampires, Seelies, werewolves...they banded together and grew more powerful. Finally they will be destroyed...and so will you.
With Valentine, Malakai and the small group of minions dead, does this mean the Circle is finally finished too?
Followers pop out of nowhere to accomplish Valentine's goal, but without their leader, it's a direction-less battle now. I'm crossing my fingers this storyline is completed.
We've seen the shocking twists and betrayals already (goodbye forever, Malakai). Though, I have a feeling the group might pop up one more time in Shadowhunters Season 3. However, with Valentine's death, let's hope this group stays dead.
I may have spoken too soon about Jonathan being dead on Shadowhunters Season 2 Episode 19.
The first scene of him dying on the beach and opening the portal to Edom seemed like it was his send-off. However, the end scene of "Beside Still Waters" changes everything.
Hope is still alive, and so is Will Tudor's screen time on Shadowhunters. He looks dead at the moment, but the "Mother" could bring him back...or at least, seek vengeance for him.
There's something very ominous and spooky about the whole scene.
What did you think of "Beside Still Waters"? Is Simon trapped in the Seelie realm? Have Magnus and Alec truly overcome their issues? What evils will Mother cause in Shadowhunters Season 3?
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Justin Carreiro is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.