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Why Jesper From Shadow And Bone Looks So Familiar

"Shadow and Bone" was an instant hit for Netflix. A regular fixture on Netflix's Top 10 list after its debut, it earned an inevitable Season 2 renewal and spun internet darlings out of its young cast. And while the show mainly follows Alina Starkov (Jessie Mei Li) as she joins the magical Grisha and attempts to rid her land of the dangerous Shadow Fold, the series also has a breakout character in one Jesper Fahey.

Quick-witted, charming, and skilled in deception, Jesper is a standout character in both "Shadow and Bone" and the Grishaverse novels that it's based on. However, Jesper is sometimes also a sympathetic character — not just a cunning one. The dichotomy has earned him plenty of fans, including the social media department at Netflix. Jesper's magnetism has also led many to speculate about the actor Kit Young, who plays him. So, with no further ado, here's a guide to Young and his career thus far.

Young got his start in theater

While Kit Young's television career technically began with his minor role in the TV movie "Walter's War," he mostly stuck to theater roles during his early years as an actor. He hadn't garnered any major on-screen acting credits until he graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. However, after graduating, Young appeared in several high-profile stage productions, including "Julius Caesar," which was televised by the Royal National Theatre in London. 

Soon afterward, Young showed up in the detective series "Endeavor." In the Season 6 episode "Pylon," Young played a supporting character named Chris, who became part of a storyline involving the murder of a teenage girl. While Young didn't have a significant role in the 2019 episode, he still met some other industry players and continued developing his career as a working actor. And fortunately for Young, he learned in the same year that he would be working on "Shadow and Bone."

He recently starred in a Stone Age horror-thriller

After "Shadow and Bone" Season 1 premiered on Netflix in 2021, Kit Young appeared in the 2022 movie "The Origin." The movie, which debuted at the BFI London Film Festival, stars Young as Geirr, the sensitive brother of a prehistoric warrior named Adem. Praised for its narrative turns and compelling dramatic storytelling, the Stone Age thriller garnered some buzz at the festival and earned Young his highest Rotten Tomatoes rating on a movie to date.

Young's Geirr isn't always the story's most confident character, but Young — along with his costars — has earned approval for their ensemble work. Additionally, the movie required its cast to learn a unique proto-Basque language for its world-building ambitions. This challenge and the thriller's unique horror beats have showcased Young's skills as an actor once again. The movie even mirrors the themes of "Shadow and Bone" at one point, with one character spouting wisdom about the eternal difference between light and dark. As Young himself put it in an interview about the movie, "The Origin" takes dark turns, but to great effect. "It's about the first people to ever land in Britain in 43,000 BC. And things happen to them," he told Geeks of Color. "They think they found a new paradise, but actually, they come into contact with things and, you know, horror movies – people die. So that's really exciting, very emotional, very dark story."

He played twins in The School for Good and Evil

Most recently, Kit Young played the dueling twins Rafal and Rhian in Netflix's "The School for Good and Evil." The film, helmed by "Bridesmaids" director Paul Feig, opened up with Rafal and Rhian engaging in an effects-heavy fight sequence before segueing into the main plot about Rafal bringing evil to the school. As Rafal, the sinister half of the twins, Young was able to lean into his particular charms and believably seduce the film's young Sophie (Sophia Anne Caruso) to the dark side.

While the film itself wasn't a major hit with critics, it kept Young's relationship with Netflix alive and well, thus ensuring his continued presence on the streamer. But since the film premiered in October, fans of Young's (and Jesper's) on-screen charisma have been forced to wait to see their favorite character again as "Shadow and Bone" Season 2 doesn't premiere until March 16.