Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Teen Wolf, Season 2, Episode 3: Ice Pick

We begin with Allison fuelling up her car at a petrol station and giving some suspicious side-eye at the black extra on his bike. He leaves and then all the lights go off! Allison’s not one to miss a trick and hurries into her car, she can score a few tank of fuel here! (Or, possibly, she’s scared, but I like my interpretation better). But on getting in she finds she’s dropped her keys and has to get out and grab them (Allison, you fail at getaways).  Rather than leave when she retrieves her keys she decides to stay outside her car and look around in panic while the background music overdoes the violin section. Allison, you could be home by now if you’d just get in the car and drive! Alas, she does not and someone manages to sneak up on her and drop a bag over her head.

She is taken to a dark room in an abandoned building, tied to a chair and gagged opposite her father who has been treated them same way. Oooh, Argent killing? Sorry, Allison, I’m on the bad guy’s side. A spooky voice asks them to contemplate what her murderous father would do if Allison got bitten.

Her father goes all hulk and breaks the chair – and Bennett (the black extra from earlier) hands him a phone that is playing the spooky recorded message.  Yes it was all a set up by the Argents – because kidnapping and terrifying your daughter is such a wonderful bonding experience. Daddy Argent says this is the beginning of her training, that he knows she intervened to protect Isaac last episode and that they will try to kill Isaac again.

He plays the innocent card AGAIN by claiming it isn’t his decision – and he shows the progressive history of the family. Because wars are started by men, (broadly true - but Aunty Kate wasn't exactly the gentlest being on the planet) they train their sons to be soldiers and their daughters to be leaders. It’s the women who make the decisions in the family (apparently leadership training involves kidnapping. Oh and it looked and awful lot like Grandaddy Argent making the decisions last week).

As she leaves, Bennett congratulates her on how fast she managed to cut her bonds. And looo, we have a love triangle hoving into view.  She leaves and Bennett is attacked by what is clearly the lizard creature from last week – that also seems to have poisonous claws.

At school they apparently have a climbing wall and Allison and Scott are doing flirting/racing/banter thing. Next up is Stiles who is fine and Erica who panics half way up. Lydia gets to be a Mean Girl and remind us all that she’s very intelligent, Allison is concerned because Erica is epileptic… I’m not sure how relevant that is. She jumps down, her classmates mock her but Scott looks on in concern. Everyone goes to the changing room – the coach tells everyone to keep an eye out for Isaac (who is still suspected for the murder of his father) and Stiles and Scott dismiss it as Derek’s problem – which is overheard by Jackson who’s probably not best pleased that there’s another werewolf when he couldn’t change. And Erica returns to the climbing wall alone, without mats or safety harness. She starts to fit half-way up and Scott, in the changing room starts shaking. She falls but he is there to catch her. He sensed it before it happened.

Erica ends up in hospital, talking to the snarking the nurse (Scott’s mother, Melissa) and then Derek takes her, medical trolley and all. She doesn’t’ seem overly panicked about this, nor does anyone else in the hospital. What, can you just come in an pick a patient to take for a ride? She does start to worry when he takes her to the morgue. Derek has a deal for her – he can make her epilepsy go away, the seizures, the need to take pills – and make her stronger, faster, better than before. Yes, he’s still on a recruitment drive for new werewolves.

Jackson  and Mike are in a class watching a video explaining what vaccination is (really? They’re at least 16, and they’re just now studying vaccines? Maybe the school should spend less money on climbing walls and more on the science classes). Which seems to make him think about why he didn’t turn into a werewolf (he had been clawed in series 1). And Matt is irritated by his broken camera. Jackson is also irritated by Lydia and accost her after the class demanding to see her bite mark and questioning why nothing happened to her. He blames his own inability to become a werewolf on her, leaving her a sobbing wreck. Can something please eat Jackson now – here lizard lizard lizard.

Under the door of the bathroom stall she’s crying in, she sees man’s muddy feet. Following she sees a man from the back, checking a trophy cabinet than leaving. The trophy cabinet holds an award for Peter Hale – the old Alphas who attacked her. And the man looks rather like him even though.

In the lunch room Stiles buys some keys off Boyd (we have a nice little class moment – Stiles complains about the jeep he drives, Boyd complains about the bus he has to take – perspective, nicely done) and takes them to Scott. But the whole room stops and stares as Erica enters, newly confident and with a much more daring wardrobe and more make up. Being a werewolf agrees with her it seems. Scott and Stiles chase her to see her get into a car with Derek.

And we see Scott return to work at the vets again – long time, no see – time for some deep philosophy and wisdom. He also gets a raise – which isn’t the werewolf talk he wanted, but who turns up a raise?

Allison and Lydia are at Allison’s house and Daddy Argent is happy – he wants her to be friends with Lydia so she can spy on Lydia and see if she’s a werewolf. Allison why are you joining in the Argent murder agenda?

Stiles, Lydia, Scott and Allison go to the deserted ice rink after hours (presumably what the keys were for) and Stiles continues to try and attract Lydia. Scott finds his werewolfness doesn’t replace being able to skate and Lydia is a completely stunning expert. And romantic photos are ruined by Scott’s eyes reflecting light (nice touch, I have to say). Unfortunately the cutesy scene is interrupted by Lydia following a trail of flowers to where she sees the old Alpha trapped under the ice – she appears to be hallucinating.

Scott confronts Erica in school the next day, believing that there has to be another chosen because Derek needs 3 werewolves – Erica points out that they count Scott as one of the number. And also makes it clear how much she loathed being epileptic. She also flirts with Scott – and Allison sees (can we stop having these hints of ridiculous teen drama, please? We have a plot line, we don’t need relationship angst).

Speaking of drama – Mummy Argent finds a love note from Scott and decides to slice her arm so she can go to hospital and be treated by Melissa (Scott’s mother) so she can question her about whether Scott is suitably heartbroken or not over Allison.

Thankfully Scott and Allison meet up over lunch and Allison is more concerned about him being dragged into Derek’s pack than any jealousy  - especially with her murderous family planning war. She just wants Scott to live (then how about stopping your murderous family, Allison? Rather than training with them?) But then Stiles notices that Boyd’s table is missing – and they assume he is next on Derek’s recruitment list. Scott wants to intervene but Stiles points out that both Isaac and Erica were given a choice and wanted to change and liked being changed – if Boyd wants the same thing then why should they stop it? It’s not Scott’s responsibility – but Scott is insistent and Stiles goes along with him, even if he does taunt him along the way.

Poor Stiles goes to Boyd’s house and runs into Erica – which ends up with him being unconscious. Can’t someone makes Stiles a werewolf? Please?

Scott finds Boyd at the ice-rink and asks if Derek has told him everything  - and it seems he has and Boyd still wants to go ahead. But Derek arrives with Erica and Isaac and they say they love being werewolves. And then we have a fight with Scott on one side and Isaac and Erica on the other – and Scott drops them both with minimal difficulty. Because he’s a more athletic person or a more powerful werewolf? Of course, Derek vs Scott is a very different story. After being beaten, he learns that Boyd has already been bitten

Jackson storms to werewolf central to confront Derek about not changing and runs into a pack of murderous Argents . Daddy Argent threatens him, makes it clear they’ll kill him if he becomes a werewolf, and sends him on his way. He has a massive temper tantrum – and in doing so reveals he has super-strength,

Daddy Argent takes Bennet’s mauled body to the vet to identify what killed him – also making it clear that the vet is far more than just a vet.

We see more of this later when Scott goes to see him after his fight with Derek.

This episode switched all over the place with lots of mini scenes, a little disjointing and it gets in the way of development

I am really sick of Daddy Argent playing the “good one” card – not his choice? He sits and enables every attempted murder. He isn’t the good one, he’s no better than Grandaddy Argent or any of the rest of them

And while it’s nice to see a tradition of female leadership, it doesn’t change the fact that they’re murderers – and “just following orders” is really not an excuse.

Inclusion-wise we have some POC (at last), Boyd, the newest werewolf. Bennett who is an Argent – but also dead by lizard man, or so it seems. But he’s cast for the next episode as well. I am glad to see the return of the vet, though – but, of course, he is serving as a deep mentor role. Perhaps even a full blown magical POC.

We have a disabled character. Except she only existed to show how terribad it was to be an epileptic –which she is then cured of. This? Isn’t good representation, not even close.

The gay Maris, Danny, was absent.

I question Derek’s recruitment drive. While he’s helping people in vulnerable situations, I also don’t think building a pack of people with high anxiety, panic and fear is going to be very effective against the Argents – and may be putting more victims in their path.

But I question more Scott’s decision to stop the transformations. Everyone who has been changed wants to be changed, is fully informed of the consequences and still wants to go forwards –and the change has, through their eyes, made their lives better. Why is Scott interfering? For that matter, why is Scott so hostile to joining the pack? Derek didn’t change him and I don’t recall Derek being Scott’s enemy.