Created by Eric Heisserer (‘Bird Box’), Netflix’s ‘Shadow and Bone’ is a gunpowder fantasy adventure show predominantly set in Ravka, a kingdom inspired by the 1800s’ tsarist Russia. Several hundred years earlier, a swath of darkness manifested, dividing the country in half. In the present time, a strenuous link remains between the two Ravkas, and the country’s people suffer greatly. However, the protagonist, Alina Starkov (Jessie Mei Li), can potentially change all this through her Sun Summoning ability.
In episode 7, titled ‘The Unsea,’ the events that turned Aleksander (aka Darkling/Kirigan) (Ben Barnes) into the Dark Heretic are depicted. The Fold’s creation is finally shown. Mal (Archie Renaux) successfully leads Alina to Morozova’s Stag, but they are then found and captured by Kirigan and his Grisha. After their preferred mode of transportation, the Conductor’s rail engine, is destroyed, Kaz (Freddy Carter) and his crew decide to hitch a ride on the skiff on which Kirigan and Alina will also travel, presumably to remove the Fold. Here is everything you need to know about the episode’s ending. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Shadow and Bone Season 1 Episode 7 Recap
The Fold has many names, including the Unsea, which refers to the near pitch-black darkness inside it. Episode 7 begins with a flashback depicting the time when the Fold was created. Aleksander fell in love with a healer Grisha named Luda. She was mortally wounded by the Ravkan soldiers when they came to arrest him. Even back then, his mother Baghra (Zoë Wanamaker) warned him about the dangers of using forbidden powers, but he didn’t listen. As the Ravkan soldiers closed in on the secret hideout of the Grisha, Aleksander walked outside and faced his enemies before creating the Fold.
At present, after Mal and Alina find the Stag, Kirigan catches up to them with Zoya (Sujaya Dasgupta), Ivan (Simon Sears), and David (Luke Pasqualino). Mal is fatally injured, and Alina has no choice but to give up the Stag to save Mal. Kirigan kills the Stag and infuses Alina with an amplifier collar made out of the Stag’s antlers, which gives Kirigan the ability to control her power. Alina learns that Genya (Daisy Head) was spying on her on Kirigan’s behalf. Mal, whom Kirigan heals to keep his promise to Alina, escapes from his confinement and hides inside the hull of the skiff that will take Kirigan and Alina into the Fold.
Shadow and Bone Season 1 Episode 7 Ending: What Does Kirigan Want to do with the Fold?
As the early part of the episode reveals, Kirigan created the Fold in utter desperation, hoping to create an army with Merzost (essentially magic, as opposed to typical Grisha powers, which is regarded as Small Science) just as Morozova had made his amplifiers. Despite his mother’s warnings, he didn’t foresee the true scope of the devastation that his actions could bring. Ironically, he created the Fold to protect the Grisha, and yet, some of the people who turned into Volcra were his comrades, who were trying to evacuate from the shelter when it happened. The only person that he managed to save was his mother.
When Baghra revealed the truth about Kirigan to Alina, she told the younger woman that he wants to weaponize the Fold. This is likely a correct assessment. Episode 7 demonstrates that Kirigan, in his own way, is a staunch patriot. Although he created the Fold to fight the soldiers of Ravka, he still wants to remake his country into a paradise where the Grisha will not be persecuted. So, although he says that he will destroy the Fold with Alina’s powers, he likely plans to bring ruination to all enemies of Ravka, including General Zlatan.
Are Kirigan and the Apparat Working Together?
This is unlikely. Kirigan has expressed his disdain for the King’s spiritual adviser several times. The antagonism seems mutual, as the Apparat tries to give Alina as much information as he can on important matters without raising Kirigan’s suspicions. When Genya arrives from the capital, Alina learns from her that the King has fallen mysteriously ill, and the Apparat is ruling in his stead. According to the official accounts, the Queen hasn’t left her chambers to ensure that she doesn’t get infected with whatever affliction that the King has. In reality, she likely has been confined there by the Apparat so that he can rule uncontested.
How Has the King Fallen Ill?
Kirigan gave Genya to the Queen when the Tailor was only 11 years old to spy for him on the royal family. Since then, the Queen has used Genya’s abilities to feed her vanity. Genya’s Tailoring ability is almost as rare as Alina’s Sun Summoning, but she remained one of the few Grisha’s who doesn’t belong to any particular order. At some point, the King began raping her.
But her loyalty towards Kirigan is so absolute that she waited until his orders to punish the King. Genya is the source of the affliction that the King now has. Her power enables her to heal, to mend wounds, and even erase the marks of age temporarily. Obviously, these traits can be utilized to devastating effects if she intends to do so.
Does Kaz Still Hope to Abduct Alina?
He does. At this point, he has no other choice but to see his plans through. He knows what is waiting for him at Ketterdam, especially in matters concerning Pekka and Heleen. If he returns empty-handed, he will lose his Club, as Inej (Amita Suman) has no intention of returning to Ketterdam and rejoining Heleen’s menagerie.
Inej’s past experiences are horrible enough to make her decide to leave Kaz and Jesper (Kit Young) when it becomes clear that they have to cut their losses and go back to Ketterdam. But then, they watch the Conductor’s rail engine explode and realize that the only way to get through the Fold now is by getting on the skiff on which Alina will be. Kaz understands that Inej’s religious beliefs prevent her from acting against Alina, so he asks her to help him until they get to Novokribrisk.