Film Reviews

Shadow and Bone season 1 – thoughts

I watched Shadow and Bone season 1 *about a week ago* and loved it. There is much to say and comment on but you (and I) would be here all day. So, I decided to just write some quick thoughts as an extension to my April Wrap Up. Note: I didn’t take notes so this is all from my week old memory.

I deliberately read the books this month to avoid the suspense of wanting to see the characters on screen and because of that, the story was a bit fresh in my head going into the show. Of course, I didn’t expect them to follow the book 100% but I was interested to see how they would include the crows into the story and make it believable and understandable. Glad they made this decision too because it gave those who read the books something more to look forward to, plus the crows are my favourites.

Okay, let me start with the cast.

The entire cast aced their performance and to an extent, they were what I imagined them to be. The only characters I think were casted perfectly in terms of how I imagined their appearance plus mannerisms were Kaz (Freddy Carter), Inej (Amita Suman) and Jesper (Kit Young). I imagined the Darkling (or Kirigan) a little younger BUT! Ben Barnes embodied the mannerisms so well. Matthias and Nina were not what I expected in appearance but they (Danielle Galligan and Calahan Skogman) were amazing on screen. For Alina and Mal, it’s different from the book as they are portrayed as part-Shu. Not to sound like a scratched record but again, lovely performances.

I’m impressed by the cinematography and direction for most parts. The only scene that underwhelmed me was the demonstration that Alina and Kirigan (the Darkling) did. I had imagined a way more dramatic tone and was expecting an ‘upbeat’ score and demonstration but all is well! Also, I know it’s called a Little Palace but, I imagined it bigger. Overall though, the sets looked amazing.

Some of my favourite moments/ things:

  • pretty much every scene with Kaz and Inej
  • “hug the goat, shut the hell up”
  • Alina’s outfit when she goes to meet the darkling after the attack on the skiff – idk, I just like it.
  • Jesper and Milo the goat ❤️
  • Actually, every scene with Jesper
  • younger Alina and Mal
  • most of the iconic lines being used – “no mourners, no funerals” a fave.
  • That one scene with Zoya and Mal. I don’t ship them or whatever, I just liked it.

A few issues:

  • I wanted more of Baghra :/
  • “Aleksander” just, why?
  • the anti-Shu moments – I felt they were just thrown in for ‘substance’ and would’ve been necessary IF they were challenged OR if we were given positive perspectives too especially since making Alina part Shu was a change for the show. I hope this is addressed later on.
  • I won’t lie, the timeline is a bit confusing since the crows are supposed to be about 3 or so years younger, but I’ll just wait to see how that plays out.

And that’s all I can remember right now but there is so much more that could be commented on. Overall though, I enjoyed it and will be looking forward to a season 2!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

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