We Review the Latest Episode of Shadowhunters SN02 EP06 – ‘Iron Sisters’


Last time on Shadowhunters, we found our heartstrings pulled as Clary (Katherine McNamara) fought to bring her mother back from the dead, allied herself with Alec (Matthew Daddario,) and learned that sometimes all the magic in the world can’t solve everything. Still, life goes on even for the heavy at heart.

‘Iron Sisters’

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters

As adamas is forged into new blades at eighteen Iron Sisters march into a training room where sixteen of the sister’s blades are examined but only two chosen for a test run. In a sparring match that ends with Sister Cleophas yielding to her fellow sister, Cleophas is quick to inform the younger members of their caste that their craftsmanship is satisfactory. Interrupted by an older sister those present are informed of the attack against the City of Bones & that Valentine had the Soul Sword.

Holed up in her room Clary continues to sketch runes while Jace (Dominic Sherwood), who has been looking through the Grey Book, admits he’s been unsuccessful in finding the rune she drew in the last episode. Clary finds this answer unacceptable, and while Jace is forthcoming in admitting some runes have been removed and are only for elite shadowhunter use, his sister is left to wonder if it isn’t Jocelyn trying to contact her. With nowhere to turn for answers and sudden knock on the door, the pair is quick to hide their search for answers.

On the other side of the city, it looks like Simon (Alberto Rosende) & Raphael are finally coming to odds. Having been starved for blood in the prior episode, Raphael has been left to clean up Simon’s mess which he is quick to point out will come with consequences.

Back and forth Clary paces in her room while having a heart to heart with Izzy (Emeraude Toubia). Clary admits she still misses her mom, is worried about Luke, and wondering how Alec is doing. Izzy though while she’s apt to point out that he’ll be fine, doesn’t sound entirely convinced herself, or maybe that’s her subtle way of trying to convince herself that she’ll be okay. Apologetic over stabbing Izzy, Isabelle tells her it’s fine and shares with her the exciting news that she is cleared for the mission. Quick to answer Clary’s questions about the sisters, Isabelle tells her that that the Iron Sisters are marked by special runes which allow them to shape pure adamas into blades and imbue them with special energy. Unwilling to stay behind, Clary tells Isabelle that she’s coming along too.

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters

Moving to Aldertree’s office Isabelle requests permission to bring Clary along, telling him that she will look out for her and that she wants a refill of yin fen. Happy to oblige Aldertree fetches another tin of it but offers it to her with an ultimatum that clearly spells trouble: She can have the yin fen so long as she spies on her and reports every last word and thing Clary says or does.

On their phones, Simon & Clary discuss Raphael’s methods of dealing with Simon’s mom, skirt over his incident with the rat, and that Simon’s moving back to the boat basin.

Inside Jade Wolf, Simon looks for information on Luke (Isaiah Mustafa), leads, anything, only to find the entirety of the pack has given up on the search for him. They instead believe he will come back when he wants to and no sooner.

Magnus (Harry Shum Jr), thumbing through what appears to be a pantry, is pleasantly surprised by the timely arrival of Alec. Having been sent a distress call by fire magic, Alec is taken aback by the jar of werewolf teeth in Magnus’s hand which results in a cute little blurb between the pair. Their conversation then shifts back to its purpose though as Magnus apologise for summoning Alec for a less than dire reason. Revealing that he was hoping to take Alec on a date, we see our aloof archer’s emotions and logic duke it out as Magnus provides him with some rather down to earth advice. Much to our Malec loving delight, Alec acquiesces to Magnus’s request.

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters Screencapture

Given our first official Simon & Maia encounter, Simon tosses his belongings into his backpack while jumping down from the uppermost canoe in the boat basin to greet Maia. Reminded swiftly of just how nerdy Simon is we get a lesson on mattresses, while Maia points out there’s one person in the pack that hasn’t given up searching for Luke. Her. Hope filled by the prospect of having someone else to help look for Luke, Maia informs Simon that there is no such thing as we and why that is. When under high stress or intense emotions even the smallest thing can set them off, causing a turned werewolf to tear through, well, we can only imagine. Still, as Maia asks where Simon thinks Luke might have gone his hope is renewed and the pair set off to where he, Luke, Jocelyn, and Clary used to go camping.

Portaled to the home of the Iron Sisters, a towering castle with an intricate gate reminiscent of their swords, Clary & Isabelle are in for a rough greeting as they find themselves held at sword point. Accused outright of being Valentine’s daughter and assumed a threat Clary is quick to remind them that they aren’t the only ones who have been hurt by his actions, while Isabelle points out their venture here is only to gather information. Led across the grounds to a sacred pool they are informed that to gain access to the Citadel they must undergo the purity trial. Only those containing no trace of demon blood in their system may enter the sacred halls.

Stern looks are passed between Aldertree and Jace as the current head of the New York Institute grills Jace on why he and his sister are scrutinising the Grey Book. Not pleased with the witty answer he receives Aldertree places Jace on ichor duty and threatens him with cleaning the latrines if he doesn’t do as he’s told.

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters Screencapture

At Hunter’s Moon, we find Magnus & Alec (or Malec) partaking in libations although Alec, having never had a drink before in his life, isn’t exactly fond of the taste. Move forward with drinks half downed; the pair indulge in a game of pool which Alec quickly comes to realise is not his forte, at least not compared to Magnus who sinks nearly every ball into a pocket.

On the road, Maia and Simon carry a conversation that is very “cause and effect.” Asking about Clary, Maia discovers that the pair met in grade school when Clary called for the nurse since he was having an allergic reaction to clay. In turn, picking up on Simon’s jealous tone prompts her to ask who Clary fancies giving both the opportunity to realise they know Jace, whom neither is particularly fond of. With the tension between them eased Maia and Simon share an embarrassing story about themselves. Maia that she woke up after a transformation naked and late for calculus class and Simon finally shares his rat tale with someone that isn’t Raphael.

Towering before a jukebox, Magnus selects a song before turning to Alec. Hitched on the pool table, he acknowledges Magnus’s commentary about them having a healthy competitive nature by pointing out he never had much choice since he grew up with Jace. Casually Magnus remarks that Alec’s others ex’s must have found such a competitive energy to be invigorating only to learn that exes are, in fact, ex, with Lydia having been the only one before him.

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters Screencapture

Isabelle, concerned for Clary’s safety, stops her on their walk across a black metal bridge towards the pool of water used for the purity trial. Since Jace is her brother, she fears Clary may also have demons blood. Clary finding this ridiculous enters the pool and when she emerges from its shimmering waters and is deemed untainted by demonic energies. Isabelle, follows suit, however, as the Iron Sister utters her chant the waters turn black and bubble up around her. Nearly dragged beneath the waters, Isabelle is saved by Clary who pulls her back onto the bridge. Unable to enter the Citadel herself, Isabelle tells Clary to go ahead. After she has left the sister who remains reveals the truth to Isabelle about the yin fen Aldertree has been giving her.

Traipsing through the woods Maia shares with Simon that when she first turned into a werewolf, she was terrified to go outside, out of fear of hurting someone, so she locked herself in her room and played video games. In a flashback, a younger Maia sits in an ambulance, hands bloodied. It is here she meets Luke who shares with her who and what she is and that while she hurt someone, she didn’t kill them. Guilt-ridden Maia begins to panic.  Luke knowing that their emotions are linked to their transformation reassures her by promising her he will not only be there every step of the way but will teach her how to control this new aspect of herself. Brought back to the present both Maia and Simon smell blood only to find a torn apart deer carcass.

A clearly uncomfortable Magnus sips at his libation giving Alec free reign to admit that he’s never been in a relationship because he wanted to avoid being treated differently due to his upbringing. Full of incredulity Magnus attempts to reassure Alec that his innocence and his upbringing though are what make him, him and there is nothing wrong with that. Unfortunately, Alec is unwilling to let this be and prompts Magnus for an answer on the one topic that isn’t always easy to stomach: How many exes do you have? Left to learn the hard way that he’d have rather not asked, as it strikes at Alec’s insecurities, Magnus reminds him that they are who they are and that you sometimes just have to accept what is.

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters Screencapture

Standing in what appears to be the main room of the Institute, Jace cleans a blade free of ichor only to have more thrown into a basket on the front end of his table. Irritated by the fact that everyone is questioning his allegiance, Jace finds his way to Aldertree’s office and tosses his ichor covered rag onto the table. Broaching the subject matter, Aldertree is apt to point out that Jace could not swear his fealty to the clave in the City of Bones so no one should trust him. Struck by the realisation that Aldertree cannot throw him out,  Jace discerns that he is trying to make his life miserable while destroying everyone’s trust in him.

Clary, worried about Luke, tells Cleophas about her concerns for his wellbeing. Halted in the middle of a room within the citadel she warns Clary that Luke is in danger but for entirely different reasons. Touching her stele to the rune upon the floor the ceiling shifts to tell a story of how the soul sword as a last resort could be activated and release heavenly light that could kill downworlders.

Moving through the woods Luke now in human form happens upon two campers. Unable to control his urges he begins to shift and as they lay unsuspecting in their tent runs to attack them. Outside the tent, Simon tells the campers to stay inside while trying to talk Luke down. He reminds Luke of cherished memories, like how he taught him to shave, or when Clary got a marshmallow stuck in her hair which had to be cut out, and how no matter how boyishly short her hair was because of it that he would still love her.

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters Screencapture

Still stuck on the fact that the Soul Sword requires angelic energy, as Cleophas and Clary exit the Citadel she informs Clary that once activated the sword cannot be turned off. Knowing Clary is worried about its effects Cleophas tells Clary that she cannot share this information with downworlders, which frankly smells like trouble in the making. Clary then asks Cleophas one last question about the rune she saw in her mind, but Cleophas doesn’t have the answer. All Cleophas knows about the rune is that Jocelyn did not send it.

Back in the woods, Luke explains that he ran away to the woods because he didn’t want to hurt anyone. His grief was just too strong. Simon professes that both he and Clary need him to come back. Although Luke wants to come back and be there for them, he doesn’t know what help he’d be. Maia reminds him that he needs to fight and that, albeit in subtext, giving up isn’t the answer.

Through a swing of the front door, Magnus & Alec return to Magnus’s flat. No matter Magnus’s attempt at being upbeat it is evident to see that Alec is still torn up over Magnus’s number of ex’s and far vaster life experiences; So much so that he is quick to suggest that maybe they shouldn’t be together and he should just leave. On his way to the door, Alec stops, and a realisation begins to dawn on him that giving up isn’t the answer. Spinning back to Magnus he is quick to renounce his upset and steal a slow, deep kiss before announcing what Magnus has been trying to get him to realise all along, that relationships aren’t easy, but they can be worth the effort. Behind them, the front door clicks and Jace walks in asking a single, well-intentioned question, if Magnus has somewhere that he can stay.

Shadowhunters Iron Sisters Screencapture

At the Jade Wolf, Maia and Simon laugh over their adventure to save Luke who it seems has come back and the things they miss, like chocolate. Enter Clary who is surprised to see Simon laughing with an unknown girl, although she is quick to forget it as she is reunited with Luke. Meanwhile, across the room, Simon has finally taken notice of Clary and from his stare is still pining over her. Simon though is unaware of being caught red handed by Maia who seems a bit upset about his pining?

Once more in Aldertree’s office, Isabelle informs him that Clary does not have demon blood as she had to undergo a purity trial, but her tone isn’t exactly free of accusation. With her tone not lost to him, Aldertree is quick to defend himself by acting and saying that he had no idea of the purity trial and that he would have never sent her on the mission if he had known. Yet, he makes no commentary on the Yin Fen and avoids it altogether. Picking up the tin of yin fen Aldertree goes to put it away telling her he understands if she doesn’t want anymore, but Isabelle stops him. Turned away from her he imperceptibly smirks and goes to hand back the tin with an ultimatum. That he needs to know what else Isabelle might have heard, but Izzy lies and tells him she heard nothing.

In the final scene, we see an Iron Sister following after Cleophas begging her to stay. Cleophas however, refuses and stabs the Iron Sister. Removing her stele from her robe, Cleophas reveals the circle brand upon her neck only to walk off, leaving the Iron Sister to die.

So what did you think of Shadowhunter’s episode 6 the “Iron Sisters?” Feel free to check out the sneak peek of episode seven and or leave a comment below.

The Good
  • Gained a more in-depth understanding of adamas & shadowhunter weapons.
  • Learned that Clary does not share Jace's exact blood
  • Isabelle discovered that Aldertree is not forthcoming.
  • Jace left the institute.
  • Malec's first date.
  • Return of Luke.
The Bad
  • Iron Sister's fight sequence could have been more believable.
  • Still not certain what Aldertree is after.
  • Izzy nearly died.
  • Jace left the institute.
4.5 Superb

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