After last week’s major death, it’s time for the season finale as the battle for Stiles’ (Dylan O’Brien) mind comes to a close.
Let’s bitch it out…
There’s a lot to praise about this second half of season three and the majority of it can be attributed to Dylan O’Brien. The AV Club did a piece earlier this week about how the guy is basically Teen Wolf‘s “not-so-secret weapon” and it’s hard to disagree with that (the guy can do pretty much anything he’s asked to do).
‘The Divine Move’ isn’t really a showcase for Stiles, however. The show is called Teen Wolf, so the guys with the fangs, the red and blue contacts and the really bad sideburns get the most play. There’s also the fall-out from Allison’s death to deal with and a myriad of other loose ends to address, plus a teaser for next season which makes absolutely no sense at all. Basically it’s just another episode that tries to cram too much in, while somehow also not doing anything at all (exhibit A: the whole “school as snowy feudal Japan” which is ultimately revealed to be…a hallucination. A 20 minute hallucination). Unfortunately that means that Stiles and his game metaphor-hungry evil alter-ego, the Nogitsune – aka the main reason this slate of episodes have worked – are shuffled to the side.
‘The Divine Move’, as written by series creator Jeff Davis, had its work cut out for it before the teaser unspooled. It inherits a lot of heavy lifting not because it’s a season finale, but because it’s the season finale and it must contend with the fall-out from Allison’s death. Like her or hate her, Allison was the female lead on the show and she was deeply intertwined with at least three males: Scott (Tyler Posey, who’s end of episode cry in Melissa Ponzio’s arms is pretty devastating), Isaac (Daniel Sharman) and her father, Mr. Argent (JR Bourne), whose first name I refuse to learn. The latter two get to play out their grief in a more convincing fashion partially because they support each other, but also because they don’t do much else throughout the episode. Isaac and Argent essentially sit around the apartment for 40 of the 42 minutes while everyone else gets hacked to bits by the Oni, including the forty or so unlucky bystanders who had the misfortune to go to work at the hospital and police station. (Side Note: were these scenes comedic or horrific? With that 300-style slow-mo and CGI blood, I’m leaning towards the former).
Ultimately the plot, as is often the case on this show, is less important than the visuals and the emotions. Allison’s silver arrows are revealed to be the secret weapon to defeating the Oni (just in time considering 90% of the cast are near death) and relevant aspects of previous episodes return such as Scott’s plan to turn Stiles into a wolf, the sword Kira inherited from her mom, the wooden box that contained Derek’s (Tyler Hoechlin) mom’s nails and the animus form of the Nogitsune – the fly. All have a role to play in the fight to defeat evil, which saves the dying and enables a regression to the mean (aka return to normalcy) for Beacon Hills.
- The most disappointing reaction to Allison’s death BY FAR is Lydia’s (Holland Roden) in that she basically doesn’t have one. This is odd because she and Allison were supposedly super close. Oh sure, she’s upset at the police station when they give their flimsy cover story, but aside from that Lydia is essentially just a cane for Stiles to lean on as he grows increasingly weak. It’s kind of indicative to the importance of female relationships (never Teen Wolf‘s strong suit). The final scene when Lydia and Kira (Arden Cho) spot Malia (Shelley Hennig) getting a school tour suggests that Jeff Davis expects us to say “Allison who?” by the time the series returns for season four.
- The same can be said of the twins. To no one’s surprise, Aiden (Max Carver) is killed and Ethan (Charlie Carver) ships out without much fanfare or emotion. The scene in which Danny (Keahu Kahuanui) admits to knowing about werewolves is pretty damn funny, but as far as send-offs go, the twins’ exit is pretty muted. Oh well, the boys are moving on to juicier roles on HBO’s The Leftovers which debuts later this year.
- The very last scene feels completely out of place (it has a very tacked-on feeling). Derek’s “dreams” of a band of thugs breaking into his loft seeking the “she-wolf” – who, in an unsurprising turn, is revealed to be Kate Argent (Jill Wagner). Her reappearance kind of makes sense since we saw her earlier as a haunting apparition in Allison’s Nemeton nightmares, but the rationale behind her return as a blue werewolf is a stretch. Regardless of how or why she’s back, I guess now we know who – or what – our conflict in S4 revolves around. These Argents – you just can’t get rid of one without another popping up to take their place!
- Stiles (after waking up): “Oh god, I fainted didn’t I?”
- Danny (when Ethan is shocked he knows about werewolves): “Dude, it’s Beacon Hills”
What are your thoughts on the season finale? Did the resolution satisfy you? Were the Oni attacks too comedic and/or over-the-top? Do you care that Papa McCall (Matthew Del Negro) will apparently be sticking around? What about hottie Deputy Parrish (Ryan Kelley? And are you excited to see Kate Argent back? Sound off below!
Teen Wolf has now concluded its third season. A fourth season has been ordered, but remains unscheduled. See you when the series returns.