I feel like my heart can’t take anymore, but that’s the beauty of Shadow and Bone. It’s so good that I am willing to endure the pain. I am willing to endure the anger. I am willing to go down whatever emotional roller coaster that this show wants to put me on, which Shadow and Bone 1×06 “The Heart is An Arrow” certainly does.
I do hate that I suddenly really dislike General Kirigan, but I know that is a sign of a good story. It draws you in, it makes you want to feel things, it makes you want to learn more. You fall in love with characters and you grow to hate them, and somewhere inside you hope that there is redemption and you can go back to love.
But it’s also a sign of a good story that when you move from one place to another and it’s seamless. You grow to see the things that have been there all along and you’ve just missed. You look at the beauty and the pain in characters and you want to know that somewhere your heart finds its way down the road that the story is meant to take you.
I am really critical and I get that. But I think that makes it even better when I love something. Because you know that my whole heart is in it. Can I find the flaws in Shadow and Bone? Yes. There are a lot of things that I wish wouldn’t be said, comments about race, and sometimes I feel like that strongest characters are the weakest, because things are overplayed.
But the thing is that overall, the show has managed to keep us all involved and finding our way through the world it’s taking us into.
The Heart Is An Arrow, is the title of the sixth episode of Shadow and Bone, and it’s fitting. Lets break it down.
THE GENERAL CAN BE SCARY
I have to admit when I see Kirigan coming, I am afraid. My attraction to Ben Barnes is out the window and all I see is this scary man that I wouldn’t want to fuck with. The Conductor is under interrogation and isn’t saying anything truthful. Zoya informs the General that he’s only told lies, which I would fix really quick. Because lying to a Grisha is not high on my list of things that sound smart.
The Conductor says he’s been swindled, that he didn’t do anything. He came across the fold with three people and that he followed them and that they were always off. He followed them in and by time he got there, they had run. General asks the dude standing by him how much is true. Grisha dude says the Conductor did come across the fold with the others but the rest is lies.
Probably not the smartest thing for him to keep lying or denying the lies. But he does. Like an idiot, he keeps making denials.
The General says they keep track of everyone who crosses the fold, but there was no record of him. General says he knows that he has another way, and yet still the Conductor lies and says he’s an entertainer. General grabs his hand and sees his scars from how many times he crossed the fold. The general knows he’s the Conductor and has been smuggling his Grisha out of the palace and across the fold. The conductor says he does indentures, he doesn’t mess with Grisha.
Lord, stop lying while you are ahead. Then again, was he ever really ahead?
He tells the conductor that Nina was a spy and that the last report from Nina was that she was to cross the fold with the Conductor and three others. General says Nina hasn’t been heard from, and wonders if he had something to do with that. I mean at this point I would be BEGGING for forgiveness, telling him everything. But when the man tells you what he knows before you say it – you’re kinda fucked.
The General, he knows the Conductor struck a deal with these three that crossed the fold with him to kidnap Alina but he has a side deal with a western general who wants to succeed.
General knows everything. This is not boding well for the Conductor. And now is the time when he chooses honesty? And then he thinks that he’s going to get his way out of it by offering to help.
Oh you evil sweet summer child.
Let’s all say goodbye to the Conductor, cause he is gone.
NEVER BE ANYONE’S CAPTIVE
Alina has been through a lot and I am not the biggest fan of her suffering, but my love of YA books has taught me one thing – suffering is a road to growth. Now, the suffering doesn’t have to be as big as she’s suffering through, but I have a strong feeling that she’s going to come out on top.
When she breaks out of the trunk that she put herself in she comes face to face with The Crows. And they tell her that she can’t leave, even after she tells them that she doesn’t want to be anyones captive. But as Kaz and Jesper see the money, Inej sees the saint that she believes in.
And she lets her go.
I love that Inej still believes in something.
General in his office, making plans for his own expedition to get Alina back. Zoya enters and my blood boils, because I don’t like her. But she makes a point and has the courage to stand up to the General and ask what do they know about Alina’s abductors. How do we know she was abducted? The General may not want to believe what she has to say, but she has a point. And yes, that pains me to say.
Zoya says that Alina never quite fit in, her Kefta never fit her right. Maybe the pressure of saving so many lives got to Alina. But she seems to forget who she is talking to, because the General will be the first to know how Alina feels. He says they all knew that he was more important than any of them and so people always treated him different. In his vulnerable (however fake it is) Zoya comes onto him. He tells her that he’ll relax when he has Alina back.
Rejection is a knife through the heart. Zoya is rejected and pissed. I mean I would be too.
Alina in town, trying to remain unseen. She is seen though and people are rude to her because of her ethnicity. You can see the pain in Alina’s eyes. Everyone is pointing out that she is part Shu.
She bumps into one man who puts her down and then tries to pull her inside. She fights back and when his friend tries to help him, Alina blinds him with her light and takes off running. I admit I am kind of scared for her and it feels like when she makes her way into the forest, she’s a goner.
I AM SORRY I DIDN’T SEE YOU
Leave it to Mal to show up at the right time. The way he holds out his hand, all I can think is that these two have found their home. They have found each other.
Alina and Mal make their way through the forest and away from the soldiers. He gives her water and she is drinking it fast, and the words he chooses to say are to tell her to slow down. She’s like we’re talking now? And I am like damn, we going there so fast?
Let’s do this. She’s pissed its been months that she’s never heard from him and he didn’t reply to her letters. He says he never heard a word and he wrote her every day. HE WROTE HER EVERY DAY.
Darklina who? Cause Malina has risen.
They are upset with each other and I don’t blame either one for it. They both feel like the other has kept secrets, but the reality is that they have both done things to just make sure that they stay together.
He wants to know how long she’s known and she said that she never knew. She didn’t want to know because she didn’t want to be split up from him.
Mal has been trying to make his way to her. He found the stag. She thought the drawing was a way to reach back to her. She tells him he stole them from her journal. Baghra was right. He is obsessed with finding it. It’s the one animal that can magnify his power.
And then she remembers what they were talking about and is like you wrote me. Mal shakes his head yes. They hug and it feels like home. They way they close their eyes. She thanks him for finding her. He says he’ll always find her.
There is something innocent about the two of them, but the best kind of relationships start out as friendships and I am about that.
When they find a place to stay for the night, he seems afraid but nervous. She knows he’s hurting, she can tell in his body movements. He tries to make excuses, but when she tells him that she can help him so that they don’t freeze, one of the absolutely most beautiful things that I have ever seen happens.
She takes his hands and calls the light. She tells him not to be scared. Her powers don’t scare him, he says, and that makes her think it’s her. He looks absolutely in pain when she asks that and he wants to know why she would think that. She sees it in his eyes.
He sighs, and I think it’s because it’s partly because his eyes are saying the wrong thing. He says he is sorry that it took him this long to see her but he sees her now. And this is the most romantic shit I have ever seen. The way they look at each other is filled with angst, passion, lust and comfort.
These two have spent a lifetime not wanting to be apart and I think that it’s the most beautiful moment when they figure out that the feelings that are there aren’t so simple. They are love, even if he can’t speak the words yet.
STILL HAVEN’T FIGURED THIS PART OUT
I don’t see all that Nina has to offer to this story yet, but I have a feeling I will find out soon. But I love Nina and so I hope that it is something big.
Fedyor tells the General that he’s found Nina. She’s been captured by the Druskelle and is on a boat with a bunch of Grisha being moved to stand trial. Kirigan tells him to go as far north as he can and bring her back. He’s to bring any Grisha that he can find back and barring that he is to bring them one of there’s.
The boat that they are on has broken apart. Nina is hanging onto a plank and then falls into the water. She sees a door and climbs on – Mathias is there, passed out. She does her Grisha magic and wakes him up, to which he falls in the water scared.
I kinda like seeing him afraid, because it makes him more human. He thinks she wants him dead, but she has a valid point, she would have slowed down his heart versus speeding it up and he would be dead if that is what she wanted to do.
They make a deal – she can keep them both from freezing to death, but he has to swim and get them to shore. I love seeing them work together. Granted I don’t like the circumstances under which they met, but I am loving Nina showing him that Grisha are human.
When they wash up on shore, she wonders where they are, and he says that they are in his home land. She tells him they only have a few hours of sun left and need to find shelter. She speaks Fjerdan and he is surprised. Nina, the self confident woman she is says that she speaks 6 languages – it’s part of her job. Mathias tells her she’s his prisoner. She’s like na.
I love that she won’t take his shit. Even when they find shelter, she won’t take his shit. She strips down, because she’s not going to be in wet clothes are freeze to death. Their body heat is what they have. Mathias is so adorable, because he is so timid and modest. It’s just tits dude. Nina is calling him out for all his shit and all the things he thinks and I am loving it.
We all have things to teach each other.
She says she has the body heat and power to keep her warm and he heads towards her in the wet clothes her had on. She’s like nope, take them off. He tells her to turn around and she takes the opportunity to remind him that he’s just a man like all the others. They get in bed and he’s still timid and tells him to get closer. Body heat is all that will save them. He says he hates the way she talks but she puts her hand on him and makes him warm. He’s happy.
Nina wakes up with Mathias spooning her and I have to admit, I cracked a smile. For him it’s an awkward situation, he gets uptight, jumps up, and says he can’t wait to be home. She tells him that she can feel just how much he hates sleeping next to her. I’m guessing that means morning wood.
He’s embarrassed that she talks like that. Women in his hometown don’t speak like that – women are caretakers and men are their protectors. She tells him in Ravka girls and boys train side by side, but he doesn’t think it’s natural for women to fight. He obviously ain’t ever been to New York or LA, cause we can throw down. You just sit here and watch the two of them trade barbs and when he cracks a smile, there is something that melts in me.
I don’t hate him anymore.
They are making their way through the snow and he’s walking too fast. Walking fast isn’t going to make them less lost, but him being the man that he is says they are not lost. Druskelle don’t get lost, but Lord, all men get lost. It takes a real man to admit it.
What I am loving about these two together is that he’s learning about what he’s been taught is wrong. He likes her, and admitting that has to be hard. She’s making all the crude jokes and making me laugh, and he helps her to relax, just as she helps him. When they are laughing and joking, she falls through the ice, and I see a hesitation in his face.
But the thing is I don’t doubt he’ll save her, because to me he’s found someone that challenges him a better person. And isn’t that what all men want?
He gives her his hand. This moment is like a restart for them. He wraps her in a blanket as they move forward, and for the first time I see that he can be redeemed
FACE TO FACE
Inej meets Kaz at the bar. They’ve all been looking for any clue to find Alina. But Kaz, all he wants to know is how the target got away and Inej tells him the truth.
She let Alina go. To Inej she’s a living saint that can summon the sun, and it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. This is part of her faith and she won’t betray it. Kaz is pissed, but as much as he has the right to be pissed, he can’t be mad at Inej for things she didn’t know and he did on his own.
He put the deed to the Crow Club down as collateral. It’s just another thing that these three are living on borrowed time for.
They need to leave. They need to get home. Jesper can’t believe that they are going to go empty handed, but in my opinion it is probably a smart move when General Kirigan is going to come looking for her.
The carriage arrives in the town and the General gets out. The Grisha see the wagon that was reported missing. What people don’t know is that Jesper has rigged it so that it explodes as their alarm so that they know when to leave. And when they exit, they come face to face with the Grisha and take off in three different directions.
Jesper is tracked to a laundry room and is having too much fun trying to take his Grisha down.
He can’t bring himself to kill the man when a child comes out and sees what he is doing.
The one tracking Inej is in retaliation for the murder of her brother. An epic fight ensues, and Inej is injured. She doesn’t want to kill the Grisha, but she does when she tells her that she will comes for her, her friends, and basically everyone else that she loves.
Kaz comes face to face with The General, who doesn’t want to hear that Alina left on her own. He wants to know where she is and won’t ask Kaz over and over again. Kaz, I have to say has balls of steel, because he stands up to the General. And somehow manages to get away when the General almost kills him.
Kaz and Jesper meet up and Inej finds them. Kaz is worried, Inej is hurt. They have to come up with another plan, as she can’t take a horse ride. So they do what they have to and steal the General’s carriage.
General Kirigan doesn’t even care so much later, he says priority now is to locate Alina. David tells General about the ring Genya gave Alina so that when he gets within one mile of her David can direct them. General is all well done, but I am like damn Genya, I liked you until this moment. Now I am like well…
IT’S A STAG PARTY
Mal and Alina are the type of friends who pick up right where they leave off, but the thing is everything has changed. Because feelings are involved, but there is also trust that is there no matter what.
He lets her treat his wounds and tells her what happened. He tells her they got caught on the wrong side of the Fjerdan border and he barely made it out alive. His friends died and even though they knew what they were doing, you can see that he kinda blames himself. He wants to speak to their families and of their bravery.
Alina wants to know if he told Kirigan where to find the stag and if he can find it without Mal. He says he pointed to a broad area, but the specific area, he didn’t. She’s upset and thinking about how melding the animal with the Grisha is a powerful amplifier. Alina says they need to head north and find the stag. It may make her strong enough to destroy the fold.
Mal thinks about seeing the stag. Mal asks if that’s why Kirigan wants it. Alina says he must have some other use for it.
The thing about Alina and Mal, I feel like they can overcome anything. He is directing her and says if they follow the path they should reach it in a day or two. He doesn’t like that they’ll get so close to Fjerda because he doesn’t want to put her in harm’s way.
They have known each other forever, but I feel like they are rediscovering each other, with evolved and magnified feelings. She wants to know when he ever backed down from a fight. He says since his new job – bodyguard to a saint.
He says this is payback to her for when she defended him when he was a child, but I could tell that she kinda loved the fact that he remembers that she was always willing to be there for him.
He had brought her berries to eat and I admit, I am kinda like go you with all the fruit that you give her. She tells him she could eat more berries and he tells her she looks healthy. Ummm, that’s not nice. At least where I am from that’s like saying girl you fat.
She realizes something and what it is I have no fucking clue, but she says that’s how he’s lived for so long, and now realizes that Aleksander will hunt her down. She’s the only threat to him now.
What? How did he live so long? Give a bitch a clue.
Awkward though that she’s going to have to explain who Aleksander is. Oops. Alina says that she made some stupid choices and Mal says she doesn’t owe him an explanation. He just wants to keep her safe.
That’s a good man. Any guy I have ever dated would be like bitch, what did you do?
General runs into the dude that tried to get Alina inside and she fought back. He tells her she fled north, into the woods. She blinded his friend. And thats when he asks the general if she’s a spy. Why he would he ask that? He tells him that the first army came by looking for her. Some tracker. A corporal.
General realizes that it’s no ordinary tracker, no ordinary girl. Orphans of Keramzin, reunited.
He realizes that she’s in the woods. Going after the stag.
Game on bitch.
Shadow and Bone is available to stream on Netflix.