Illustration for article titled iShadowhunters/i Alternative Universe Is Weirdly Nerdy and Nice

On “This World Inverted,” Clary’s search for her mother takes her through a portal into a sun-dappled dimension where Shadowhunters don’t exist, but nerdcore most certainly does. The best character is (as always) Magnus, who now favors cardigans and cats, and peddles his fortune-telling trade via cheesy infomercials.

Illustration for article titled iShadowhunters/i Alternative Universe Is Weirdly Nerdy and Nice
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Without the confines of his family, the Clave, etc., Alec is way more secure in his sexuality. He hits on Magnus when they first meet, in an appropriately inverted replay of their meeting in the “real” world.

Illustration for article titled iShadowhunters/i Alternative Universe Is Weirdly Nerdy and Nice

Simon is basically the same, but Izzy favors geek-girl glasses and Star Wars couture.

Illustration for article titled iShadowhunters/i Alternative Universe Is Weirdly Nerdy and Nice
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Jace—with slightly altered hair arrangement and way less danger in his veins—runs a coffee on wheels called “Java Jace.”

Illustration for article titled iShadowhunters/i Alternative Universe Is Weirdly Nerdy and Nice
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But perhaps most poignantly, in this dimension—scrubbed free of Shadowhunter drama—Clary sees an insanely happy version of her parents. The evil Valentine is “Val,” an internet developer who cooks waffles in the morning, throws elaborate Through the Looking Glass-themed parties (obvious metaphor alert), and melts every time he sees his beloved Jocelyn. For just a moment, Clary regrets having to leave this safer, softer world behind. Can you blame her?

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