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#ShadowHunters S2 Ep11 "Mea Maxima Culpa" Recap & Review

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Jace and Alec discuss Clary and Jace’s pure angel blood abilities as well as Jace’s ongoing feelings for Clary as the two spar. Apparently Jace has yet to tell Clary that he isn’t her brother and that he still has feelings for her. He feels that what Clary and Simon have together is very special, as he tells Alec, and he doesn’t want to get between them. It sounds like Jace has some feelings of his own to work through.

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 Clary and Simon kiss outside for the first time since Simon became a day walker. Simon tells Jace that he won’t give away Jace’s secret (that Jace’s pure angel blood may have been the reason Simon can now walk in the light). Jace isn’t thrilled with Simon’s friendship as he feels pretty guilty about his feelings for Clary.

 The clave questions Valentine in a concrete cell as they attempt to figure out where the mortal cup is. Clearly, they’re not against torture. Valentine will never give up the mortal cup. He doesn’t seem to think that the cup should be in the hands of the clave. Valentine is put through painful memories from his childhood as well as being physically injured by the head of the clave. Apparently, the soul sword has been damaged (at least that’s what the clave says) and the clave is none too happy with Clary and Jace and makes some not-too-subtle threats against the two of them if they don’t fall in line.

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Meanwhile, a tall, dark, handsome stranger walks into a bar. As he approaches the bartender, to order a drink, he tells the man sitting next to him that he will have the mortal cup before disappearing the man’s stele through some sleight of hand. This man is part of the Harrendales’ security detail. The stranger kills the two shadow hunters at the bar as well as everyone else in the entire establishment with just a snap of his fingers.

Luke and Maia pow wow at the Jade Dragon as the rest of the newly recruited pack discuss their open distrust of Luke. Russell, one of the new pack members suggests turning humans for new blood within the pack. When Luke calls him out on it, Russell challenges Luke and Luke turns his back on Russell to go to work. Clary, Jace and Alec show up with their invisibility runes on to assess the crime scene with Luke. Apparently some sand from a hell dimension has been left at the scene of the crime. This sand could only have been left by a demon. Luke’s new partner comes in after noticing that Luke is talking to someone who isn’t there. Luke tells her he’s dictating notes and his partner asks what app he’s using. She can clearly smell a rat. What’s her story? We’ll have to wait and see.

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 Isabelle shows up at Hotel Du Mort to see Raphael and asks for vampire venom. She has a breakdown/freakout in front of him, and because he cares about her, he sends her away. Isabelle finds a nearby vampire den and bangs on the door. They won’t let her in (for obvious reasons). Isabelle’s necklace breaks and her fighting techniques don’t work as she’s approached by the same tall, dark, handsome stranger that was in the bar earlier who ends up being the demon, Azazel. A mysterious shadow hunter appears out of nowhere and saves her. His name is Sebastian.

Over at the bar, Simon shows up during the daylight to talk to Maia. He confides in Maia about his new daywalker status. Despite Maia’s attack on Clary, Maia and Simon still clearly have chemistry. Maia warns Simon to keep a low profile and pours him a complimentary shot of blood, toasting with him to his new life as a day walker and flying under the radar.

 At Magnus’ penthouse, Alec shows Magnus the sand found at the attack at the bar. Raphael is at Magnus’ place. He tells Alec that Isabelle is looking for a fix and that he’s concerned for her. The two head out to find Isabelle near the vampire den and see Izzy’s broken necklace and the dead bodies Azazel left behind, which leads them to believe that Azazel has Izzy. Because the inquisitor is in a meeting, Clary and Jace talk to Valentine on their own about Isabelle’s disappearance and Azazel’s attacks. Valentine tells them that he doesn’t know where the mortal cup is and suggests that they use Valentine as bait and offer a trade: Valentine for Isabelle since Azazel doesn’t know that Valentine ostensibly has no idea where the cup is. After finding out that Jace hasn’t told Clary that they are not bothered and sister, Valentine spills the beans himself—well, he forces Jace to... #plottwist.

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Back at Sebastian’s apartment, Sebastian tells Isabelle that he’s from the London Institute and confesses that he knows she’s a yin feng addict, offering her a plant extract that acts as a medicine to combat the addiction. It will help with the pain of her venom addiction and speed up her recovery according to him. She will need to take this drug fairly often while she kicks her addiction like he did. After leaving London, Sebastian found his way to New York and successfully kicked his addiction. He tells Isabelle that she needs at least a day to get the vampire venom out of her system and suggests that she stay with him during that time.

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 Maia walks up to Luke and his partner’s car in order to have a chat with him. Conspicuous, much? Luke’s partner is way too curious about Luke’s personal life. Jace cries on Alec’s shoulder about his feelings for Clary. The two parabati share in a moment of “aww.” Sebastian makes bouillabase for Isabelle and suggests that she call her institute and let them know that she’s okay. She calls Alec, but while Sebastian makes her tea, he purposely burns the skin off of his hand. Yowch! Something is up with this guy. Sebastian shares a sob story with Isabelle about his poor, dead Mother who although she wasn’t the best Mother, “loved [him] in her own way.” Convenient, much? What does Sebastian want with Isabelle and why is he trying so hard to form a bond with her?

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 Back at Simon’s hideout, Raphael confronts Simon about having been at The Hunter’s Moon bar earlier. His big day lighter secret is out (at least with Raphael)! Back at the courtyard, Alec, Magnus, Jace, Clary and Valentine summon Azazel in order to carry out their plan. When the group summons Clary in to use her sunlight rune to kill Azazel, the rune doesn’t work. Whoops. And as Azazel walks away, he switches Magnus’ and Valentine’s bodies. Tricky move! When Magnus/Valentine gets up off of the ground, he asks Jace how Jace broke through Azazel’s enchantment just a moment ago. Jace doesn’t know. Perhaps another side effect of pure angel blood? When they get home, Alec hears from Isabelle after promptly being told to pound pavement by Magnus/Valentine. I’m sure the real Magnus won’t be very happy when he finds out that Alec didn’t know the real Magnus from Valentine! Alec tells Izzy that he wants her back home, safe. Izzy says she’ll be staying in a “good place” until she fights the battle of addiction on her own. Clary reaches out to Jace, telling him she’s sorry she blew up at him. Jace apologizes to Clary in turn. The two agree that they need time to process the new information about their relationship. Jace tells Clary that when they called Azazel into the circle and were attacked and he saw her lying on the ground, hurt, his stele ignited on its own (aww!).

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 This writer’s thoughts:

 We’ve all been waiting for the plot to develop a bit on this fledgling show. Now that it has, we’ve got some interesting characters and relationships to explore as the action unfolds. There’s Clary and Jace, who have major, unresolved issues, Clary and Simon, Simon and Maia, Clary and Luke, Clary and Valentine, Alec and Magnus, Isabelle and Sebastian, Isabelle and Raphael and so many more! This show is definitely about relationships and the expanded plot line around the mortal cup allows us to explore those relationships. As the story line and the acting improve, so will the character relationships. I can’t wait to see what Shadow Hunters has in store for us this season.