'Shadow and Bone' Season 2: Everything to Know

From the plot to the cast members, here’s everything to know about Shadow and Bone season 2

Shadow and Bone
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix

Shadow and Bone season 2 released on March 16, 2023.

The hit Netflix fantasy series, which is based on Leigh Bardugo's bestselling novels, returned for a second season, and a whole new magical adventure.

Released in April 2021, the first season took viewers deep into the fictional world dubbed the "Grishaverse" and introduced them to Alina Starkov (played by Jessie Mei Li), a young woman who discovers she has the rare power to summon light. Fans also met the show's villain, The Darkling (played by Ben Barnes), as well as a slew of other memorable characters, including The Crows, a misfit gang of criminals tasked with kidnapping Alina.

The show quickly took the No. 1 spot on the streaming giant's Top 10 list, and fans of the books were clearly satisfied with the adaption. Season 1 ended on a major cliffhanger, leaving plenty of room for new challenges and storylines for Alina and her friends in the upcoming season.

"The most wonderful thing about Season 2 is that we get to advance the story of these characters that we'd left in precarious positions at the end of Season 1. There's a lot of potential for them this season," showrunner Eric Heisserer told Netflix's Tudum.

Keep reading for everything there is to know about Shadow and Bone season 2.

What is Shadow and Bone season 2 about?

Shadow and Bone
Dávid Lukács/Netflix

In season 1, after discovering her sun-summoning powers, Alina is thrust into magical training and tasked with destroying the Shadow Fold — a region of darkness that splits the country of Ravka and is home to deadly monsters. While she was not able to take down the Fold, Alina and her friends do manage to escape its perils and defeat The Darkling, or so they thought. The final scene shows Barnes' character emerging from the Fold stronger than ever and with an army of monsters in his command.

Picking up from this ending, season 2 is sure to be a wild one, and Alina and The Darkling are presumably heading toward another showdown. There also seems to be more romance brewing between Alina and her childhood best friend Malyen "Mal" Oretsev (played by Archie Renaux).

In exclusive season 2 photos shared by Entertainment Weekly, the will-they-won't-they couple is pictured holding hands. "They're certainly not in the same place as they were in season 1," Heisserer told EW. "They've made some pretty big decisions together that they soon discover means they're all or nothing, and that puts a lot of stress on each other. I, too, am worried for them."

Heisserer also confirmed that the upcoming season will draw on "multiple books" in the Grishaverse, including the sequel in the flagship series, Siege and Storm, and the final book, Ruin and Rising.

Like with the first season, season 2 will pull from Bardugo's Six of Crows series as well, and viewers will get to see the members of The Crows get up to some new trouble.

Is there a trailer for Shadow and Bone season 2?

Shadow and Bone
Courtesy of Netflix

Netflix released an official trailer for Shadow and Bone season 2 on Feb. 17, 2023. The nearly three-minute teaser shows Alina on the quest to destroy The Darkling and his "unkillable army made of shadows" by finding two mythical creatures that will amplify her powers.

Prior to the trailer's release, fans got a sneak peek of season 2 on Valentine's Day. The streamer shared a short clip from the upcoming season on Twitter, writing, "A Villain-tine's Day love letter from me to you: Here's a sneak peek at The Darkling in Shadow and Bone Season 2!"

In the clip, Barnes' character appears (looking as villainous as ever) and announces, "I have returned, and I've made some new friends." The next shot shows two towering, shadowy monsters standing behind him.

Netflix also released a teaser trailer in September 2022 during Tudum: A Netflix Global Fan Event. The action-packed sneak peek shows a more self-assured Alina coming into her powers as she proclaims, "I am the sun summoner." It also features a steamy kiss between her and Mal as well as tons of fight scenes and an ominous message from The Darkling, with Barnes saying, "Are you willing to sacrifice that which is most precious to you?"

Who is in the cast?

Shadow and Bone
Courtesy of Netflix

The entire cast of Shadow and Bone will be returning in season 2 to reprise their roles. Li and Renaux will be bringing back their on-screen chemistry as Alina and Mal, and Barnes will be stepping into his role as General Kirigin (also known as The Darkling) again.

The Crows will also be returning, which includes Freddy Barker as Kaz Brekker, Amita Suman as Inej Ghafa, Kit Young as Jesper Fahey, Danielle Galligan as Nina Zenik and Calahan Skogman as Matthias Helvar.

Season 2 will see some new faces as well; the show announced four new cast additions on Instagram in January 2022. English actor Lewis Tan will be playing Tolya Yul-Bataar, actress Anna Leong Brophy has been cast as Tamar Kir-Bataar, Irish actor Patrick Gibson will take on the character Nikolai Lantsov and Jack Wolfe is the sixth and final member of The Crows, Wylan Hendriks.

When will Shadow and Bone season 2 be released?

Shadow and Bone. Patrick Gibson as Sturhmond in episode 201 of Shadow and Bone
Dávid Lukács/Netflix

Season 2 of Shadow and Bone will be released on Netflix on March 16, 2023. There will be 8 episodes in the season.

Will there be a third season of Shadow and Bone?

Shadow and Bone
Timea Saghy/Netflix

While a third season hasn't yet been announced by Netflix, Heisserer previously told Collider that he would love to make more seasons, and given that there are seven books in the Grishaverse, there is plenty of material for the show to continue to draw on.

"There's a lot for us to cover, of course. It can be far more than three seasons because Leigh's just written so many books and there's a lot of ground for us to cover," Heisserer told the outlet. "I feel like this is going to remain strong and healthy even at four seasons and beyond that, who knows? But I feel very nervous talking about that."

After Netflix announced that Shadow and Bone had been renewed for season 2, Bardugo said in a statement, per Collider, "I've been writing in the Grishaverse for nearly ten years now, so I'm thrilled we get to keep this adventure going. There are so many places we've barely gotten to visit and I can't wait to introduce our audience to more of the saints, soldiers, thugs, thieves, princes, and privateers who make this world so much fun to explore. It's going to be real magic to see our brilliant, talented cast expand."

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