Shadowhunters (TV Review)

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I’ve been so excited for Shadowhunters to come out, I’ve been flailing over every single tidbit I could get! Personally, I didn’t hate the movie for the Mortal Instruments, but I also didn’t love it. So, the fact they got a do-over was just amazing! I wasn’t sure about everyone on the cast, but I mainly liked the choices they made. I watched the Sneak Peeks and I thought that they were surely not from the finished pilot. All in all I was hopeful and excited, especially because I love the books so much. Conclusion: I definitely shouldn’t have hyped it up so much in my head!

Shadowhunters revolves around 18-year-old Clary, who has to discover that her mother lied to her her entire life, covering up that there existed a whole other world with demons, warlocks, vampires and the likes. Without the right preparation and her mother getting kidnapped, Clary finds herself in grave danger and only the Shadowhunters, of whom she seems to be one, can help her. 

Cast: Katherine McNamara, Dominic Sherwood, Alberto Rosende, Emeraude Toubia, Matthew Daddario, Maxim Roy, Alan Van Sprang, Harry Shum Jr., Isaiah Mustafa, Jon Cor, …
Episode Order: 13

I don’t know how many of you have read the book or seen the movie, but I think we all know that the books are quite long and that they failed at putting everything necessary into 90 minutes, so I was hoping for a slower approach on Shadowhunters. Unfortunately, I was disappointed. There was so much going on in the Pilot, I am not even sure that non-readers knew what all was going on. The editing was sloppy and the transitions between scenes far from seamless. I am well aware that the show had quite a different budget than the movie did, but the CGI and the props looked terrible to me and that just makes me so sad. If I were rich, I would throw money at them, just so they could invest it in that! Shadowhunters have these specific weapons called seraph blades and in the show they just looked downright plastic, which in turn made the action sequences lacking realism and the punch they needed.

Now, to the casting. I am really happy with some of them! Alberto is hilarious as Simon! I swear he gets all the best lines. Matthew didn’t have much screen time as Alec yet, but I get the moody and angry vibe and am digging it. Alan Van Sprang was a great Valentine, even though I have no idea why on earth he is hanging out in Chernobyl. Dom, Emeraude and Harry were fine in their respective roles as Jace, Izzy and Magnus, but the person that worried me the most could not prove me otherwise. Kat McNamara is surely a great person, but she is definitely no Clary to me. Or maybe is exactly as unlikable and whiny and annoying as Clary was in the books sometimes? I don’t know, but the way she delivered lines made me cringe sometimes and that’s not what you want from a main character. Also, she was way bolder and sexier than in the book. Finally, I do understand that they have to make some changes, but why is Luke a detective now? I don’t really understand how that improves the dramatics of the story.

I should probably mention that I didn’t just watch the first episode, but also the second one. I was hoping for it to get better with time, I am still hoping for that, but so far it didn’t help much. They added an actual intro – yay! They sort of drew runes and didn’t just make them appear, which is also an improvement. The Institute looked strange and all tech-y and there were way too many people there. The Silent Brothers look absolutely awesome but the acting was still meh … So, in conclusion, I did enjoy finally watching it come to live on the screen, but I wish they had executed it a little differently. It was fun and fresh, but it had a very different vibe from the novel. I want to love this show and I am going to keep trying to love it. I will watch every single episode of it! Also, I am not going to stop supporting it, but somehow I have doubts about it being able to become what I wanted it to be. Maybe my expectations were too high, maybe it was truly done the wrong way – too fast, too glossy, the focus on the wrong details. I have no idea what is true, so let me know what you thought of it!

Did you like/love/hate it? Share your opinions in the comments below!

Fall Review: Manhattan Love Story & Happyland

I’ve reviewed a lot of shows for this Fall Season and I am finally about to see an end on the horizon. Today I’m talking about MTV‘s Happyland and ABC‘s Manhattan Love Story! After that I’m only planning on reviewing Jane the Virgin and (the show I am most looking forward to) The Flash. If you still want my opinion on anything else, let me know in the comments below!

Happyland

Have you ever read Dream Factory by Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler? Because this show reminds me so much of the book! It’s basically also about teens that work in an amusement park or theme park that is very similar to Disney’s and about falling in love, the illusion of fairy tales and happy endings. The show definitely diverges on some other topics, because parents are barely involved in the story in the book, but are really important to what’s happening in the series.

I have to admit, that I’ve seen stronger pilots this season. Happyland, while interesting on some level, didn’t grab my attention like other shows managed to do. The actors are alright (and include: Camille Guaty, Shane Harper, Katherine McNamara, Cameron Moulène, Ryan Rottman, Bianca A. Santos, Chris Sheffield, …), but the premise is nothing I haven’t seen before in multiple soap operas. It’s difficult to relate to the fact that your crush seems to be your brother and other than that they are just building on a lot of more love triangle-related drama. I can’t really tell where the show intends to go, but I think I won’t follow it for too long.

Manhattan Love Story

Analeigh Tipton seems to be everywhere these days and I certainly don’t mind it. There really isn’t much to say about Manhattan Love Story; it is a fun sitcom that takes on the difficulties of dating and relationships in New York City. If you’ve watched the Trailer above, you’ve pretty much seen the entire first episode. The main cast isn’t that huge and consists of the aforementioned Analeigh Tipton as well as Jake McDorman, Jade Catta-Preta, Nicholas Wright, Kurt Fuller and Chloe Wepper.

So, this isn’t the smartest of shows or something like that, but people like Romantic Comedies and this one is a pretty standard example of one. Besides the extensive thought voice-overs (which are just too much for me), I really don’t find a flaw in it. The show is sweet and fun and that might just be enough.

What are your thoughts? Talk to me in the comments!