Fri 17 March 2023 17:35, UK

The Darkling (aka Kirigan) has been the central villain of Shadow And Bone since the beginning but what happens to him in season 2 and does he die by the end of episode 8?

*WARNING: Spoilers ahead for Shadow And Bone season 2*

Defeating the Darkling and destroying the murky Shadow Fold has been the main objective of Alina Starkov since she first learned of the dangers they pose back in season 1 of the Netflix series.

Now that Shadow And Bone is back for season 2, Alina and her allies are forced to face the increasingly deadly Darkling head on but do they succeed in defeating Kirigin and does he die?

The Darkling’s exploits in Shadow And Bone

When we first met Kirigan in season 1 of Shadow And Bone, he was serving as the general of Ravka’s Second Army and was searching for a Sun Summoner to supposedly help destroy the Shadow Fold that covered a huge swathe of land.

However, as the episodes progressed, it became clear that Kirigan’s intentions were not so good and that he, as the Darkling, had originally created the Fold in the first place and hoped to use it as a weapon.

In season 2, after developing the ability to summon deadly shadow creatures called nichevo’ya, the Darkling continues his pursuit of Alina and Mal.

After several encounters throughout the new season, their paths converge in the final episodes as Alina attempts to destroy the Fold once and for all.

Shadow And Bone © Netflix | Dávid Lukács

Does the Darkling die in Shadow And Bone season 2?

Yes, the Darkling does die by the end of Shadow And Bone season 2.

At the end of episode 7, Alina, Mal and their allies arrive at the heart of the Fold, the place where the shadowy realm can be destroyed.

But they’re not alone as the Darkling arrives and begins taunting them.

In response, Alina uses the dangerous Cut ability against him but in doing so, she accidentally hits Mal with the powerful blast, leaving both Kirigan and Mal wounded.

At the beginning of episode 8, Alina reluctantly sacrifices Mal – who was revealed to be the third amplifier Alina needed to boost her powers earlier in the season – so that she can defeat the Darkling and bring down the Fold.

Alina succeeds in banishing the shadowy realm but is left to face the Darkling in one final confrontation.

He attempts to plead with Alina to let him live but when she refuses, a nichevo’ya erupts out of him and attacks her.

Knowing that he is unable to control the deadly shadow creatures, Alina uses Inej’s sword to stab him, seemingly killing the Darkling for good.

In his final breaths, Kirigan implores Alina to make sure there is nothing left of him and she obliges, arranging for his body to be burned so that none of the Darkling’s followers can make a martyr’s relic of it.

However, while Kirigan’s body is burned, Shadow And Bone takes place in a world of magic where death can possibly be reversed.

Shadow And Bone © Netflix | Dávid Lukács

What happens in the books?

At the end of the novel Ruin And Rising, the Darkling is killed and his corpse burned by Alina just as it happens in the Netflix series.

However, in the following books, King Of Scars and Rule Of Wolves, the Darkling’s spirit endures and manages to transfer itself into the body of Yuri Vedenen, the leader of a cult dedicated to the Darkling.

Initially, the Darkling returns without his powers but, after tricking Alina and Mal, he manages to regain much of his former strength.

Shadow And Bone © Netflix

Season 2 of Shadow And Bone is available to stream on Netflix after releasing on Thursday, March 16, 2023.

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