The Shannara Chronicles Recap: Wil And Mareth Try To Escape The Wrath Of The Wraiths
In this week’s episode of The Shannara Chronicles, Wil and his new frenemy Mareth are on the run. It’s nothing new for Wil, who traveled from place to place last season in his quest to preserve his own life and save the lives of others, but the stakes are even higher this time. Wil and Mareth are trying to avoid being killed by Mord Wraiths, servants of the Warlock Lord (who Bandon brought back to life last episode). They’re also trying get to Shady Vale to search for Wil’s Uncle Flick, who they fortunately find laying frightened but alive under a pile of debris.
Before they make it to Shady Vale, Wil and Mareth take a brief rest stop at a beautiful, light-filled cave that can only be described as “twinkly.” And for the first time since, well, ever, the usually confident Mareth looks unsure of both herself and her surroundings. Which could be why she decides to open up to Wil and reveal that her mother was actually the dearly departed Pyria, Allanon’s ex-girlfriend and Amberle’s aunt (meaning Ander and Mareth are first cousins). As Mareth points out, that makes her (like Wil) half-human, half-elf.
But despite Mareth’s confusing parentage, she refuses to let Wil or anyone else take pity on her, which we love. Her tendency to point out the flaws in Wil’s idealistic plans, condemn Wil for not using his magic more responsibly, and create clones of Wil just to annoy him doesn’t hurt, either. We know it’s only two episodes in, but Mareth might be our favourite new character so far.
Which brings us to another new character, Lyria, and her tumultuous relationship with Eretria. Eretria and Lyria are still being held hostage by the Rovers, but fortunately bounty hunter Garet Jax (UnREAL’s Gentry White) swoops in to save the day—kind of. He lets Eretria and Lyria go, but only on the condition that Lyria agrees to return to the Kingdom of Leah, a human-run territory whose palace is gold, shiny, and looks like it was designed by Baz Luhrmann circa The Great Gatsby.
We meet the ruler of Leah, Queen Tamlin (Caroline Chikezie), who is smart, strong-willed, and supposedly always scheming. She’s also Lyria’s mom, making Lyria—you guessed it—a princess. Queen Tamlin is working with Ander to form an elf-human alliance and improve their chances of taking down the Crimson. The only problem is that Tamlin wants to strengthen that alliance by marrying off Lyria to King Ander. King Ander’s a nice guy, and Lyria can definitely do worse, but we don’t want her to have to betray Eretria before their relationship has barely even started.
Though it might be too late anyways. With the help of Jax, who has a “soft spot for hopeless romantics,” Eretria finds Lyria and chews her out for keeping her entire royal past a secret. Eretria’s understandably hurt that Lyria lied to her, especially after finding out that she wasn’t the first “feisty brunette” Lyria decided to run off with, and tells Lyria that she can only win back her trust if she accompanies her and Allanon on their quest to find Wil in Shady Vale. Sadly, Lyria is too scared of Tamlin’s wrath to take a chance and chooses to stay in Leah. For now.
And speaking of Allanon, he and Ander are trying to decide what to do about Bandon’s new obsession with the Warlock Lord. As we saw in the season premiere, Bandon successfully (partially) resurrected the Warlock Lord by using his blade and what we now know was his heart. Apparently the Warlock Lord pulled a Voldemort by making arrangements to preserve his sword, heart, and skull before he died, meaning that if Bandon can find the third and last gruesome puzzle piece, he can bring the Warlock Lord back to life for good.
Apparently Allanon and his old buddy Shea Ohmsford (aka Wil’s father) hid the skull somewhere after defeating the Warlock Lord back in the day. But while Allanon refuses to tell Bandon where it’s hidden (and unfortunately gets captured and magically castrated by the Crimson) Uncle Flick agrees to spill the beans to stop Bandon from torturing Wil with his fancy Druid mind tricks. Flick reveals that the skull is locked inside a magical safe in Paranor, and Bandon is justifiably convinced that Allanon and Wil are the only two people with enough magic to open it.
So he orders Wil, and Mareth, and Flick to track down Allanon within three days—meaning that Eretria and the Crimson are now looking for Wil, and Wil and Mareth are now looking for Allanon and the Crimson. Who will find who first?
What To Look Out For In Next Week’s Episode
1. Mareth’s Magic
During a tense conversation with Wil, Mareth insists that she was born magical even though Allanon was not. And because we learned about Mareth’s supposed parentage so early in the season, we wouldn’t be surprised if Shannara eventually throws a curveball at us. What if Mareth isn’t Allanon’s daughter, but is actually a Shannara? What if she’s related to Wil?
2. Wil’s Uncertainty
At the end of the episode, Bandon tries to get into Wil’s head by claiming that he, too blames Allanon for letting his friends and family members (particularly Amberle) die. And because Bandon has mind reading powers and can see what Wil’s thinking, he knows exactly what to do to push Wil’s buttons. We compared Bandon to Kylo Ren last week, and this week Wil was definitely his Rey. Will Wil end up going to the dark side?
3. The Double Agent
Catania gets killed by someone who we thought was one of King Ander’s right-hand men. Does this mean he’s actually working for the Crimson? And could he be in cahoots with Queen Tamlin? Even Lyria seems to think her mother’s sudden willingness to work with the elves is somewhat suspect.