Well, after the atrocity that was last week’s episode, it would have been really hard for this one to not be an improvement. Hit the jump to find out my thoughts.
Coming out of last week’s Teen Wolf, I don’t think any of us were expecting a happy time this go-round. Well, we were right; this episode was so full of pain and fear and chaos that, well, it would probably make a chaos demon very happy. Stop the feels train, please. I want to get off.
Spoilers after the jump.
Teen Wolf is back, and this week we’re continuing all the mystery from the last episode. Scott, Stiles, and Allison are all still struggling with the consequences of dying in the first half of the season, Stiles’s father is about to lose his job, Malia is still a werecoyote, and we left Derek and Peter off being tortured by an unknown assailant.
Hey, I know it’s not Tuesday, but what the hell, right?
Oh, Teen Wolf, how I love thee. I think I was torn between watching this trailer with rapt fangirl attention and shaking my head in amusement. Let’s face it, for as progressive a show as Teen Wolf is, or at least tries to be, it can delve into being nothing more than a guilty pleasure pretty quickly. There’s all the brooding, “hot” guys, and there’s the romance with badass chicks.
Unfortunately, I also worry that there may be more than enough queerbaiting in the upcoming season. Thankfully, there was nothing in this trailer indicative of queerbaiting from what I saw. I’ll admit, though, that I would love to see Sterek happen for visibility’s stake. Stiles and Derek are supposed to become closer friends this season, so who knows.
Obviously, I haven’t seen season three yet, but already I’m not that happy with it. I mean, we spent all of last season watching Jackson attempt to become a decent person who wasn’t completely reprehensible, only for the actor to leave the show. And Allison has had the exact same story arc in both previous seasons, so I can only wonder what manipulative asshole is going to drive her crazy this time around.
I should point out, however, that this is the first time Teen Wolf is going to have over twenty episodes a season, which will give the show a lot more time to develop its characters and plot. It looks pretty intense as it is. The Alpha pack has come in, and it seems that Derek’s being forced to kill off his own pack members. Speaking of dying, Scott’s mother gets her throat ripped out in this trailer, and I hope that’s in a vision or a dream or something, because I think she’s a pretty interesting character.
I think a lot of the show has been well done thus far, but it’s also had its fair share of problems, so I guess we’ll just have to keep watching to find out.
As for the very end of the trailer:
MadameAce: If there was one thing to praise Teen Wolf for, it would be its treatment of rape culture, and this can be shown through the actions of Matt, Kate, and Peter. The show doesn’t condone their actions, though it doesn’t try to draw a large amount of attention to them either. Teen Wolf doesn’t do those annoying specials that other shows do, where they present a serious topic and devote the entire episode to giving a lecture on it. Teen Wolf instead presents rape culture as something that not only exists but often happens that people have to deal with.
Lady Geek Girl: Well, we’re back to talk some more about feminism in Teen Wolf. This time we will discuss Allison and Lydia as strong female characters.
Lady Geek Girl: Now that MadameAce and I have gotten our overall review of the series out of the way, it’s time to analyze some of the themes and issues in Teen Wolf. We’ve split these into parts because otherwise this post would be way too long. Our first post, as you can tell, will be about feminist issues in Teen Wolf, but we will also be addressing race issues, LGBTQ issues, and disability issues in the future.
Buffy was praised for being a feminist show with strong female characters in the 90s, launching Joss Whedon’s career and making his name synonymous with strong women in fiction. Now, don’t get me wrong; Joss Whedon and Buffy aren’t perfect, but they did make strides, and recently, comparisons have been made with Teen Wolf. Teen Wolf has gotten rave reviews for being a show with strong female characters (and good representation of minority characters in general) and Jeff Davis is even being called the new Joss Whedon by some.
And yes, I will agree, Teen Wolf is a great show for women. There are many complex female characters and the show passes the Bechdel Test with flying colors. Like Buffy, I think Teen Wolf is a show that’s moving in the right direction, but also like Buffy, it isn’t perfect. Let’s talk about some of the good and bad in Teen Wolf.
The series Teen Wolf—based very loosely on a comedy movie from the eighties by the same name—has had two fairly successful seasons thus far. Between the rise of stories like Twilight and The Vampire Diaries, it seems to be riding on the success of its predecessors. At the very least it started out that way, before moving on to become its own story. And one of its goals was clearly to be as far away from Twilight as humanly possible. Of course there’s still the shitty romance, but unlike Bella and Edward, Scott and Allison—our new star-crossed lovers—are surprisingly well-thought out characters. When they’re not together.
It is still based around the forbidden-romance trope, though, which I find annoying. Oftentimes, the forbidden romance presents itself but does little to justify the relationship. It can—and often does—involve stalking and emotional abuse and then calling that love, but usually all this trope does is show why the relationship should be forbidden in the first place before asking the audience to agree with it. Twilight, being one of the more prominent examples, is my case in point. And all the newer shows, movies, and books riding on its success like to copy that formula, mistaking the difference between stakes and an unhealthy relationship.
Fortunately, we can thank Teen Wolf for not doing that. As annoying as the love story can be, it is one of the healthier relationships I’ve seen in the forbidden-romance trope. And even though Teen Wolf is marketed toward a female audience and that’s probably the main reason the romance between Scott and Allison is played out the way it is, it is not handled the way I would expect it to be in a love story. While a relationship with Allison may be Scott’s driving motivation, it is not what’s driving the plot.
We can give Teen Wolf credit in that it doesn’t forget to tell a story in light of the romance.