Teen Wolf’s first season often undermined its sound creative instincts with haphazard execution. Plot points were regularly threadbare and characters alliances seesawed in the direction of convenience rather than motivated by any narrative truth. However, the final two episodes managed to salvage the scraps with a slight reduction in headache inducing moments, hinting towards a more promising sophomore run. So far so good.
“Omega” was a pleasant return to Beacon Hills complete with flashy new opening credits. Call me vanilla (chocolate might be more appropriate), but I was content with the plain old title card. The opening scene with Jackson emerging from a creek to glance down at his bite mark, and reflection of the full moon in the water, was impressive looking if inconsequential in the grand scheme of the episode.
Scott’s introductory dash through the woods was where the story really took off, revealing that Mr. Argent had threatened him, with a gun, to stay away from Allison. Brief pause: Scott’s moonlit run showed one of my favorite locations on the show; the cliff overlooking the town. I think the show should do more with it. Maybe a secret meeting place for Scott and Allison? Beacon Hills needs more recurring locations to flesh out the town. Currently, it’s feels very one dimensional when the most we see are the school, the characters houses, and random places that could be in anywhere. Unpause.
At the hospital we learn what the episodes mystery is all about. What’s up with Lydia? First she has a classic shower hallucination scene (pulling handfuls of hair out of the murky, clogged tub) then she’s wandering around stark naked. I’m fine with the show teasing this development out, because it results in Compassionate Stiles. The most endearing character on the show is Stiles, and not because of his sidekick quips. In the first season, his relationship with his dad was the most believable on the show as was the reveal that he had a crush on Lydia since the third grade. Perhaps, it’s the good luck of not being the protagonist, where all their storylines have to be repeatedly shoved down the viewer’s throat.
Back to Lydia, I wonder if they’re trying to Caroline Forbes her? And for those the reference is lost on (first, you watch Teen Wolf and not The Vampire Diaries? And secondly, shame on you if that previous statement wasn’t enough of a guilt trip). She was TVD’s resident mean-girl turned kickass heroine when she became a vampire. However, Caroline was always more sympathetic and endearing than Lydia, even in her most needy moments.
The show leads us to believe Lydia is prowling through cemeteries in one of many well-staged scenes. Alex, a Beacon Hill’s High student, is working the graveyard shift, digging Kate’s grave on a forklift. Now let me applaud Alex. The forklift was overturned, he was in the grave, and he didn’t predictably call help to no one or make noise. He got to live. And apparently is now on Derek’s hit list for a new pack member.
The cemetery was a cool setting to contemplate the possibility of Lydia going for a late night snack (as we heard and glimpsed a silhouette of something munching on a body), because it symbolizes a death to who she was before. She’s definitely going to come out of the experience of being bitten by the Alpha changed.
The tripwire scenes were great. One because the first one was comical with Stiles pointing out the tripwire, not realizing Scott was actually caught in it. Secondly because of how they had a purpose that was teased then later delivered on. The lone Omega, who was the actual culprit behind the episodes weird happenings (not Lydia), was meant to mirror Scott’s vulnerability by being packless. We saw how easily Scott was trapped when Mr. Argent and his ubiquitous cronies came to see what he had caught. The scenario played out similarly with the Omega who was caught off guard, defenseless, and surrounded by Argents. However, the new Argent in town, Grandpa Jerrod, went medieval on his ass and cut him in half with a sword. The scene effectively conveyed the potential for this to be Scott’s fate. Especially with him looking on from a nearby tree, held back by Derek who explained it for everyone, because subtlety is apparently wolfsbane in Beacon Hills. One more observation about this scene: While, Mr. Argent’s stance on Scott is drastic (nothing in the finale made me think he’d go this way, in fact I thought he’d become a begrudging ally) I like that he brought up the code before his father halved the Omega.
The previews for the season look epic. I’m really looking forward to new characters and new supernatural creatures. If the show can entertain logic for more than a commercial break we might be in for a much-improved season. The elements are all there. Some assembly is required.
Here’s where my more cynical observations will be weekly.
*I think experiencing the moment of Allison’s dad threatening Scott in real time would have been more effective than that brief flashback. I understand the importance of expediency when viewers have others options, but I think it might have been more impactful. The delivery felt hollow, expected, and perfunctory. Like let’s get this ish out of the way
*After the first season wouldn’t Scott be smart enough to know Allison’s dad looking for Lydia (someone who he knew was bitten by the Alpha) wasn’t a “search party” but a “hunting party” as Allison corrects? Didn’t the man pull a gun on him? The show seems to go out of its way to make Scott idiotic sometimes.
*Allison and Lydia are best friends? Have we ever seen a genuine bonding moment between the girls? It reminds me of the scene last season where Scott confesses to Stiles that the Alpha wanted him to kill his pack, which somehow apparently included Lydia and Jackson, even though they pretty much disliked each other in every episode. The writers suddenly wanted us to care about them so they pulled the cheap death card. Don’t force it on us.
*The lack of character in Scott is depressing. When Stiles asked him what was going on in his mind while turning (into a freaking werewolf people) he responds “Allison”. The writers had a genuine opportunity to develop his character, but making everything revolve around Allison isn’t charming, it’s not dumb.
*Jackson is still breathe acting. I mean breathing extra hard to convey whatever it is he can’t with any subtlety.
*Alex plays on the lacrosse team too. Of course he does.
*Shame on me for getting excited when I saw the two gossiping black girls at the their locker. For a second I thought one of them would be more than an extra.
*Allison can’t go to the funeral because everyone’s going to see her, and there’s going to be cameras there. How shallow. I’m sure she meant she doesn’t want to be faced with memories of a beloved family member who turned out to be more animalistic than the werewolves she hunted.
*Seriously all that paparazzi at a funeral attended by three mourners? The Kardashian’s don’t even have that type of press.
Let’s keep the conversation going! Comment! Remember: All new episode tomorrow night!
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Tags: Teen Wolf