There’s enough action and entertainment in “No Shelter But Me” to keep fans engaged, but the endless exposition, complex mythology, and conveyor belt of characters do weigh down the overall fun factor.
We recap the Netflix series Shadow and Bone Season 2 Episode 1, “No Shelter But Me,” which contains spoilers.
In 2021, Shadow and Bone pulled off the seemingly impossible, delivering a young adult fantasy series loyal to its fanbase, hugely successful, and well-received by critics alike. The Netflix original series, an adaptation of Leigh Bardugo’s debut novel of the same name, returns for a second, eagerly-awaited season, hoping to capitalize on that rare combination and its boundless popularity with more intense world-building, explosive action sequences, and intricate mythology.
Shadow and Bone Season 2 Episode 1 Recap
Episode one, “No Shelter But Me,” opens with our fearless leader, Alina Starkov (Jessie Mei Li), the Sun Summoner (she can control light), walking through a peaceful village. The villagers start to flee, though, as a large, dark storm cloud, known as the Fold, suddenly engulfs their homes. Alina attempts to utilize her inner light to ward off her enemies, but her powers won’t work. General Aleksander Kirigan, aka the Darkling (Ben Barnes), then walks out of the Fold.
Where are Alina and Mal heading?
Alina wakes from this nightmare on a ship heading for Novyi Zem. Her childhood friend Mal (Archie Renaux) comforts her, reminding Alina that Kirigan is dead. She talks about the Fold growing and her recurring dreams only worsening. Mal tries to raise her spirits, discussing the wonders awaiting them in Weddle harbor. These two are heading on a new adventure and can’t help but smile at their future prospects.
At the checkpoint, Alina goes over their plans. They must find the Sea Whip (a magical creature) before Alina can destroy the Fold for good. Mal worries that attempting this feat will kill her. Refugees in the queuing system mention the Fold moving and expanding, destroying their villages. Alina realizes that her dreams are a reality. They need to succeed now more than ever.
Meanwhile, the Crows return to Ketterdam. Led by Kaz Brekker (Freddy Carter), the gang head for the Crows Club, only to find that their sign has been replaced. Pekka Rollins has taken control of their home. To make matters worse, the Crows are being hunted down by the Stadwatch, the Ketterdam police. Kaz and his partner in crime, Jesper (Kit Young), are captured, but Inej (Amita Suman), the Wraith, manages to escape.
What does Sturmhond want?
On their way to Hellgate prison, Kaz and Jesper are taken on a detour. They are placed before Dreesen, who had paid the Crows to find and return Alina to him in the first place. Dreesen is angered to see that they have taken his payment but not returned with the goods. Kaz figures out that Dreesen is just a middleman; there is a stranger in the room who is their real boss.
He introduces himself as Sturmhond (Patrick Gibson), a famous pirate that wants Alina capturing for the bounty on her head. Alina is a wanted woman; the reward money has just been upped. Everyone in the land is after her.
What is Jesper’s secret?
Kaz and Jesper state that they don’t know where Alina is, but Sturmhond sees through their lies. He has found the bribe that Alina had given them for keeping their silence. The pirate demands to know Alina’s location immediately in return for their freedom and a little bonus cash. Kaz tells him that she is heading to Novyi Zem. Sturmhond holds up his part of the deal and lets them go. Kaz takes the money, revealing Jesper’s secret in the process. He knows that Jesper is a Durast, with the power to manipulate objects.
Alina and Mal move into a hotel and marvel at their lavish bedroom. They are surprised to find only one bed, but they soon start to make out anyway. Ship bells ring in the distance, and Mal is forced to stop kissing his lover. He heads down to the docks to find the Sea Whip. On his journeys, Mal is spotted by Lieutenant Bohdan. Mal is called a deserter, and the soldiers chase after him.
Meanwhile, Alina looks through old maps in the library and also must flee. The locals are also after her for the bounty on her head. The two lovers reunite and escape thanks to some local support.
Who has framed the Crows?
Inej regroups with Kaz and Jesper that night. She has done some digging and has discovered that they are all wanted for murder. They have been framed by Pekka Rollins, accused of murdering Tante Heleen. Tante had the deeds to the Crows Club, and now Pekka has taken ownership of the place. He has also commandeered the Menagerie. The group is then updated on Alina, who is believed to be working with the Darkling, although we know this to be a lie. Kaz starts to formulate a plan and asks Inej to find him a Heartrender, people who can manipulate the human body.
Shadow and Bone Season 2 Episode 1 Ending Explained
Kaz tracks down Wylan Hendriks (Jack Wolfe), a demolitions expert who can make bombs for the Crows, while Inej finds her boss, a Heartrender, called Nina Zenik (Danielle Galligan). The whole gang assembles at Wylan’s hidden laboratory. Nina asks for her lover, Matthias Helvar, to be freed from Hellgate prison in return for her services. Kaz admits that he cannot free the prisoner but can get her inside as a visitor. Nina agrees to the deal. Kaz then takes the gang out onto the rooftop. They witness the Crows Club rising in flames; Kaz has started a war using Wylan’s bombs.
In Kribirsk, we find Genya Safin (Daisy Head) imprisoned in a cage right next to the ever-expanding Fold. The monsters within roar and scream as Genya begs to be freed. Shadowy creatures emerge from the Fold and start to attack the soldiers. Kirigan follows and merges with these shadow monsters. He frees the prisoners and asks Genya to join him, creating a new army in the process. Genya and the others follow Kirigan towards an ensuing battle.
Back in Novyi, Zem, Alina, and Mal hide from the police. They decide to jump onto an independent ship and escape before Bohdan can capture them. The couple heads straight for the Captain and demands to set sail immediately. Alina and Mal are unaware that they’ve already left the harbor. And their new Captain is actually Sturmhond, the very person who is after them. He has them just where he wants them.
What did you think of Shadow and Bone Season 2 Episode 1? Comment below.