Netflix’s Shadow and Bone finally brought Alina Starkov and the Crows to our screens, and the magical and monstrous world of Leigh Bardugo’s books ended while teasing more stories would come, though there is still no confirmation on future seasons.
The first foray into the Grishaverse may be over, but there are still plenty of fantasy shows to enjoy at the other end of the Fold. One of the joys of the adaptation was the diversity in the main cast of characters, which has always been a rarity in the fantasy genre — Shadow and Bone is another step in the right direction when it comes to inclusive casting.
If you’re looking for more shows in the genre, but you’re tired of the same old stereotypical characters, here are a few suggestions that even a Darkling could enjoy.
Image via The CW
Legacies is a spin-off of The Vampire Diaries, with a younger cast of characters who will appeal to Shadow and Bone fans. Danielle Rose Russell stars as Hope Mikaelson, an orphaned teenager who descends from three powerful bloodlines. At the Salvatore School for the Young and Gifted, Hope is surrounded by supernatural beings like witches, werewolves and vampires. Alongside Hope, there are the twin witches Lizzie (Jenny Boyd) and Josie (Kaylee Bryant) as well as the enigmatic Landon Kirby (Aria Shahghasemi). Together, they must learn to master their abilities while battling rising tensions from the outside world. This show from The CW is a combination of drama and mystery, with some much-needed humor thrown into the mix.
Image via The CW
The Charmed reboot has faced its fair share of controversies, but The CW show isn’t going anywhere. Rebooted with women of color in the main cast, the show follows three sisters, Macy (Madeleine Mantock), Mel (Melonie Diaz), and Maggie (Sarah Jeffery), as they discover they’re the “Charmed Ones” — a group of good witches fighting against evil demons and dark forces. Though the three actors aren’t all of Latine origin, they play Latina sisters. The show is, well, charming, because the sisters and their distinctive personalities work together to conjure their powers. Let’s be honest, it’s tough to get along with your siblings, but these three find a way to make it work.
Locke & Key
Image via Netflix
There’s only one season of this graphic novel adaptation so far, but production on the second season is already underway. This property was in development hell for a long time until Netflix rescued it, and we are grateful they did, because this show is easy to get lost in. The story of three teenaged siblings and their mother moving into their family home after a loss takes a turn for the dark and disturbing when the children discover keys hidden around the house. Except these keys don’t just open doors. They’re magical items, unleashing powerful (and terrifying) abilities and entities. The production values on Locke & Key are stunning, especially the way the power of the keys is portrayed. The show captures the horror aspects of Shadow and Bone with just as much fantasy lore. And, right when you think you know where this show is headed, the season ends with a shocking twist.
Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
If badass girls winning over the bad guy is your jam, then Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is exactly what you need for your next watch. The series takes its name from the Archie comics series, but this Netflix adaptation has a charm of its own. Kiernan Shipka is Sabrina Spellman, a half-human-half-witch who has to juggle her dark heritage with her life as a normal high school student. Through the seasons, we watch Sabrina escape from under the thumb of powerful people to pave her own destiny. Sabrina is a complicated character – she doesn’t always do the right thing, and she has to learn from her mistakes. There are a lot of incredible women supporting Sabrina, including her two aunts and her friends. And there’s some singing involved too.
Image via Syfy
The Magicians is perfect for people who want to watch something a little more adult but with the same magic and mystery of Shadow and Bone. This Syfy show is about a group of students at a magical school, with main character Quentin Coldwater (Jason Ralph) and his best friend Julia Wicker (Stella Maeve) functioning much like Alina and Malyen Oretsev (Archie Renaux) in Shadow and Bone — inseparable until they’re torn apart. The show is packed with characters, all of whom have unique personalities and add to the world of the show, and the diverse cast and a queer storyline are given a decent amount of screen time. The Magicians tends to steer towards darker themes, but raked in plenty of positive reviews during its five-season run.
RELATED: ‘Shadow and Bone’: Freddy Carter, Amita Suman, and Kit Young on Crow Camp and Kaz and Inej’s Romantic Tension
Once Upon a Time
Image via ABC
Every Disney fairy tale comes to life in this ABC production – from Snow White to Elsa, they’re all here to be found in one quaint little town. Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison) moves to Storybrooke, Maine, a town with a magical secret. All the residents of this town are characters from fairy tales, but their memories have been wiped by an evil queen, who was denied a happy ending. Once Upon a Time lasted seven seasons, and while the quality of its storytelling was inconsistent, it was a favorite for many people, especially because of the great female characters, who were all very layered and had dynamic relationships with each other. The showrunners tried to add a little diversity to the cast as well, which was a welcome change considering most of the characters were plucked from Western fairy tales.
Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments
Image via FreeForm
Based on the immensely popular young adult book series, The Mortal Instruments, written by Cassandra Clare, Shadowhunters follows Clary Fray (Katherine McNamara), who discovers she has certain abilities that appear when she turns 18. Clary soon finds herself embroiled in an invisible world, fighting a war alongside the half-angel/half-human Shadowhunters Jace (Dominic Sherwood) and siblings Isabelle (Emeraude Toubia) and Alec Lightwood (Matthew Daddario). They’re up against demons, vampires, and even Clary’s own family. Much like Shadow and Bone, the protagonist is a young woman who must master her powers with the help of her friends in order to save her world. Along the way, there are several romantic entanglements, including a beloved queer coming-out story that is well executed. All three seasons are available on Netflix.
KEEP READING: ‘Shadow and Bone’ Author Leigh Bardugo on Incorporating ‘Six of Crows’ Characters, Humanizing the Darkling, and Future Seasons
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About The Author
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Monita is a copywriter by day and an entertainment writer by night. Her bylines have appeared on Fansided websites Bam Smack Pow and Show Snob, as well as on Vocal and Women Write About Comics.
From Monita Mohan