Shadow and Bone Season 1 Episode 2: Recap and Explainer

The initial episodes of ‘Shadow and Bone’ predominantly take place either in Ravka, a country that significantly resembles the Tsarist Russia of the early 1800s, or Ketterdam, a melting pot of a city that seems to be a combination of Amsterdam, London, and a few other cities also from the early 1800s. Leigh Bardugo’s original books have received critical acclaim for depicting a culturally diverse world, and Eric Heisserer’s (‘Arrival‘) Netflix adaptation has emulated that trait perfectly.

In episode 2, titled ‘We’re All Someone’s Monster,’ Kaz (Freddy Carter) must find a way to travel through the Fold before sunrise. The Grisha moves Alina (Jessie Mei Li) to their stronghold, the Little Palace. Mal (Archie Renaux) tries to come to terms with the fact that his childhood friend is a Grisha, a group of people that both he and Alina have dreaded all their lives. Here is everything you need to know about the ending of ‘Shadow and Bone’ season 1 episode 2. SPOILERS AHEAD.

Shadow and Bone Season 1 Episode 2 Recap

The episode begins with a flashback to Alina and Mal’s childhood at the orphanage in Keramzin. It was the day when the royal officials visited the orphanage to test if any of its young residents have Grisha abilities. Alina and Mal escaped and hid in the field, not wanting to be tested. Both being the children of mixed parentage, they didn’t want to stand out even more than they already did in an extremely prejudicial country.

At present, Alina meets General Kirigan (Ben Barnes), who shows her that she is indeed the Sun Summoner. She is then promptly placed in a carriage and sent to the Little Palace with a Grisha escort. On their way, the group is ambushed by the Drüskelle, the elite unit of the Fjerdan military, often sent into the Ravkan territory to hunt and kidnap members of the Grisha. Kirigan arrives right on time, dismembers a Drüskelle with a blade made out of pure darkness, and takes Alina to the Little Palace.

After a violent visit from Pekka and his lackeys, Kaz learns about the Conductor (Howard Charles), a smuggler who gets refugees and deserters out of East Ravka through the Fold on a mechanized transport. It is revealed that Tante Heleen (Deirdre Mullins), the owner of the brothel known as the Menagerie and Inej’s (Amita Suman) former mistress, is also looking for the Conductor. Realizing her intentions, Kaz races against time to save him.

Shadow and Bone Season 1 Episode 2 Ending: Why Does Heleen Want to Kill the Conductor?

Heleen is a ruthless and manipulative brothel owner in the sin city of Ketterdam. The fact that she has managed to run her operation this long despite the steep and often murderous competition demonstrates what she is truly capable of. Inej was apparently one of her assassins until Kaz acquired her indenture. However, Kaz hasn’t finished paying her yet.

So, Heleen offers Inej complete freedom from her indenture if she kills the trafficker, who, according to Heleen, works with another brothel owner. It turns out that Heleen actually has sent Inej after the Conductor, knowing that if she tells Inej that the man she is about to kill is a trafficker, then Inej’s overwhelming desire for vengeance for her family will triumph over her faith, which prohibits murder for any reason.

Heleen has figured out that Kaz wants to enlist the Conductor to go through the Fold and get the Sun Summoner. She has also probably joined forces with Pekka and is trying to foil their biggest rival’s plans. Fortunately, Kaz discovers what Heleen is up to when he and Jesper (Kit Young) visit Poppy, the stage performer, and gets to the Conductor’s residence on time before Inej kills him.

What is the Little Palace? Why Are the Grisha in a Hurry to Take Alina There?

Located in Os Alta, the capital of Ravka, the Little Palace is the primary residence and headquarters of the Grisha. Its very name suggests that there has to be a Big Palace or a Grand Palace that likely serves as the home of the king. During Alina’s conversation with the Grisha Fedyor (Julian Kostov) and Ivan (Simon Sears), it is revealed that the Grisha were persecuted even in Ravka until Kirigan’s arrival, who forced the kingdom to respect and fear the Grisha.

The Little Palace was built to protect the Grisha from the hostile people outside. The Grisha know that people generally blame them for their misery as it was a Grisha who created the Fold. The Grisha hopes that if Alina takes it down with her Sun Summoning abilities, they can assimilate into society. For the entire kingdom of Ravka, Alina is the sole hope for a bright future. And this is the very reason why Ravka’s enemies, like the Drüskelle, want to kill her. For them, she represents the terrifying potential that a united Ravka has.

Who is the Darkling?

The Darkling is a moniker for General Kirigan. It refers to his Grisha ability which enables him to control darkness. Like Alina, he works with an element and is a summoner or a member of the Order of Etherealki. As he seems to have the same abilities as the Black Heretic, Kirigan is widely feared by Ravka’s enemies, including the Drüskelle. This becomes evident when the Drüskelle immediately retreat upon learning that Kirigan has joined the battle. However, even his powers have limitations. He apparently can’t destroy the Fold and seems only to make it worse. According to Kirigan, every time he enters the Fold, he becomes a beacon for the Volcra.

Read More: Shadow and Bone Season 1 Episode 1: Recap and Explainer