In 2018 there was a huge movement to save Shadowhunters from the axe…
Alice Isted investigates what made #saveshadowhunters a global phenomenon.
What is Shadowhunters?
Shadowhunters is an adult fantasy tv show based on Cassandra Clare’s best seller book series “The Mortal Instruments”. Shadowhunters follows a group of half human, half angel warriors protecting their world by hunting down demons. In the Shadowhunter world all the legends are true meaning that there are vampires, warlocks, werewolves and fae within the series. However, there are ominous threats at every turn, meaning the Shadowhunters must always been on their guard and ready for anything to keep the darkness at bay.
So how did #saveshadowhunters come about?
Shadowhunters first aired on January 12th 2016 in the US and instantly gathered a following, which only grew as the episodes progressed. On June 5th 2018 the Shadowhunter fandom was given the news the news that the show would not receive a 4th season. Understandably Shadowhunters across the world were devastated.
After seeing the success of series such as Lucifer and Brooklyn Nine-Nine being picked up after fans gathered in their numbers to try the show, Shadowhunter fans across the globe took to the internet to petition to save the show and to date has gained over 163,000 signatures. Fans also took to social media expressing their feelings of the show being cancelled and adding the hashtag “#Saveshadowhunters’ which resulted on it trending across multiple platforms.
What happened with Shadowhunters after the hashtag?
After the hashtag trended across multiple platforms, Shadowhunters fans adopted it and used the hashtag in a variety of unexpected ways.
As of January 2019, Shadowhunters fans using the hashtag have accomplished;
- Over 18 million #SaveShadowhunters tweets so far.
- 163,000 signatures so far on the petition for a season 4.
- TWO billboards in Times Square
— TV Guide (@TVGuide) June 29, 2018
- $22,700+ raised for the Trevor Project. Which focuses on prevention of suicide within the LGBTQ+ society.
- Published a book that collected all of the heartfelt messages left behind by fans on the Trevor Project donation page. The book was entitled ‘Loss Makes Us Stronger and contains many heartfelt messages about the effects the show had on the fans that can also be read here .
- Over $1,500 raised for GirlUp https://www.instagram.com/p/Bm_jCIthAmf/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_medium=loading
- $6,000+ raised for various other charities through fan designed merchandise sales
- Month long subway billboard campaign in Seoul, South Korea (with two billboards)
- Fans Had pedicabs and bike billboards at San Diego Comic Con.
- Named 2 stars in honour of Shadowhunters.
- A billboard in Toronto (to encourage the cast and crew in their last week filming).
— David Castro (@DavidLCastro_) July 31, 2018
- 24 red double-decker buses in London with #SaveShadowhunters on them.
- A giant banner in Buenos Aires, Argentina.).
- Fans marched with a #SaveShadowhunters banner in Brazil.
- Fans campaigned at NYCC 2018 with a video ad playing on the Ferry next to New York Comic Con, as well as swag giveaways for fans and attendees.
— BoomBitches (@BoomBitchesSH) October 6, 2018
- Katherine McNamara surprised fans at NYCC People’s Choice Awards food truck.
- Secured 4 Additional Write-In Nominations for E!Online’s People’s Choice Awards (The show was originally only nominated for TheSciFiFantasyShow, but got the show into the final round of nominees for additional categories by write-in votes and campaigning)
- WON 4 E!Online’s 2018 People’s Choice Awards! For the Show, The Bingeworthy Show, The Male TV Star (Harry Shum Jr), The Female TV Star (Kat McNamara). – the cast accepting their award for #TheShow of the year
How did the cast of Shadowhunters react?
In an interview at MCM Comic Con London with Katherine McNamara (Clary Fray), Alberto Rosende (Simon Lewis), Emeraude Toubia (Isabelle Lightwood), Jade Hassouné (for Brick Mansions) and Chai Hansen (Jordan Kyle) they spoke about how they were honoured and touched by the way that fans across the globe have come together to make long lasting friendships and a loving community which is hard to do in a world which is so divided.
They were also amazed at the growth of the campaign and how it international, spreading to the London busses and South Korea subway billboards which Jade Hassouné actually found in person and shared on his Instagram!
In an interview with TV Guide some of the cast members were asked about their opinion of the campaign and this is what they had to say.
Alberto Rosende (Simon) “It’s really a gift when you’re a part of something that affects people the way that it’s affected the group of people that are pushing the #SaveShadowhunters agenda.”
Emeraude Toubia (Isabelle): “They’ve really gone way beyond with everything they’ve done… the billboards and Times Square and Comic-Con and flying a freaking plane around Netflix headquarters and Freeform and Disney.”
Dominic Sherwood (Jace): “…the most gratifying and most heart warming feeling I get is when that money is transferred to a charity in the name of Shadowhunters…”
Harry Shum Jr. (Magnus): “The beauty is that they have this beautiful story that amounts to like 56 episodes or something like that, of being able to go back to it and relive those moments that a lot of these fans have expressed to us have helped them so much with their own personal lives, whether it be their sexuality or their confidence.”
Matthew Daddario (Alec): “The charity efforts are really good, because it’s not just selfish, it’s not just, “We want our show back,”.”
Katherine McNamara (Clary): “It’s been the biggest comfort in a time that’s been kind of shocking and very interesting… having the fans still care so much…“
What will happen as a result of the #saveshadowhunters campaign?
The truth is, who knows?
While #saveshadowhunters is still being shared across social media, and the stars continue to attend Comic Cons around the world, there are currently no plans from freeform or Netflix to continue the series… but there will always be hope that the series will be picked up by another company. Perhaps a spin off series will be arranged but for now the future of Shadowhunters is uncertain. However the acts of the campaign have definitely not gone unnoticed by the cast and the rest of the world.
No matter what the outcome of #saveshadowhunters, the fans will always have a beloved show that has led to such a tight knit loving fandom. People across the globe have formed long term friendships which many call their family and most importantly the fans are just proof that people across the world can and will pull together if there is something, they are passionate about and believe is worth fighting for.
Altogether now… #saveshadowhunters
Article written by Alice Isted from RoseLilyCosplay – your average nerd , cosplayer and most importantly Shadowhunters fan.
She is often spotted on the comic con floor wearing a outfit of a beloved character which may or may not contain actual blood, sweat, and tears.
If she somehow isn't on the comic con floor she is either binge watching her favourite shows or volunteering at her local zoo and cooing over the sloths.
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