Shadow And Bone Should Have Adapted The Books’ Best Storyline When It Had The Chance


  • Shadow and Bone missed the opportunity to tell its best story, as the cancellation of the Netflix series ended the beloved fantasy franchise too soon.
  • The show integrated elements of the Six of Crows storyline but failed to include the highly anticipated Ice Court Heist, considered one of the best stories from the book series.
  • The delay in adapting the Ice Court Heist may have been due to the showrunner’s plans for a spinoff, as well as the timeline of the source material, but adjustments could have been made to make it work.



Shadow and Bone had an opportunity to tell its best story, but the Netflix series let it slip by. The cancelation of Netflix’s Shadow and Bone was a decision that shocked critics and fans alike, as it marked the death of a beloved fantasy franchise. It ended after just two seasons, meaning that there were so many stories left to be told from the source material.

Impressively, the series managed to weave several Six Of Crows into Shadow and Bone’s timeline, including a heist to kidnap an important political character for a rich merchant in Ketterdam. However, not everything made into the show. In fact, a story arguably considered the best in the entire book series was among those that didn’t make the cut.

Shadow And Bone Should Have Adapted The Books’ Ice Court Heist Sooner

The Crows standing on a rooftop

Season 2’s plot doesn’t measure up to the high-stakes adventures of the Ice Court Heist. In Six Of Crows, the Ice Court Heist takes Kaz, Inej, Jesper, Wylan, Nina, and Matthias on an epic journey to infiltrate an unbreachable military stronghold in Fjerda, to contain the spread of the deadly jurda parem. As a major highlight of Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse, the Ice Court Heist was a story high on the radar of longtime fans of the books. In fact, it was a story that the series had the groundwork to use, thanks to the presence of the Crows.

With the early introduction of the Crows in season 1, season 2 was the perfect opportunity to adapt the Ice Court Heist. The series seemed to be headed in that direction with the introduction of a deadly heist toward the end of season 2, but instead of thrilling adventures in Fjerda, it opted for side quests in Shu Han instead. In hindsight, it’s apparent that Shadow and Bone waited too long to tell its best story.

Why Shadow And Bone Waited To Adapt The Books’ Best Storyline

Jessie Mei Li as Alina wearing her crown in Shadow and Bone season 2 episode 8

According to The Geekiary, before the debut of Shadow and Bone season 2, showrunner Eric Heisserer confirmed he wouldn’t be introducing the books’ Ice Court Heist just yet. Instead of making the story a subplot, Heisserer had bigger plans for the Crows. Newsweek reports that the showrunner planned to use the Ice Court Heist to introduce the Shadow and Bone spinoff, Six Of Crows. The setup for the story was clear, as the climax of season 2 ends with Kaz laying out the entire situation with jurda parem, the kidnapped chemist, and preluding to embarking on “the most lucrative job” they’ve ever done.

Another reason the adaptation could have been delayed is due to the timeline of its source material, which commits to Alina’s arc in Shadow and Bone before shifting the story’s point of view. Shadow and Bone season 2 draws inspiration from Siege and Storm and Ruin and Rising; chronologically, Six of Crows takes place two years after that. But while this may have been a complication, it’s not hard to imagine certain elements of the series being reworked to better fit the TV show’s timeline.

  • Shadow and Bone Season 2 Poster

    Shadow and Bone

    Release Date:

    Daisy Head, Kit Young, Julian Kostov, Ben Barnes, Jessie Mei Li, Simon Sears, Gabrielle Brooks, Amita Suman, Kevin Eldon, Danielle Galligan, Jasmine Blackborrow, Freddy Carter, zoe wanamaker, Sujaya Dasgupta, Luke Pasqualino, Archie Renaux, Calahan Skogman

    Fantasy, Drama, Action


    Story By:
    eric heisserer, vanya asher

    Eric Heisserer, Vanya Asher, Daegan Fryklind, Shelley Meals, Christina Strain, M. Scott Veach, Donna Thorland, Erin Conley, Nick Culbertson

    Streaming Service(s):

    Mairzee Almas, Lee Toland Krieger, Jeremy Webb, Bola Ogun, Karen Gaviola, Laura Belsey, Dan Liu

    Eric Heisserer


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