What better way to draw out the enemy than to play dead?
What They Say:
Time Of Death – Scott embarks on a dangerous plan to draw out The Benefactor while Malia confronts her past.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Teen Wolf worked the virus angle well last week, but the big takeaway after expanding the dead pool list was Malia learning more about herself and understanding that Stiles had been hiding it from her. I’ve really liked the relationship the two have had this season as it’s good to see something positive in his life, but the ides of it going bad because of this is pretty disheartening to think about. Which makes the opening of this episode so much fun as we see how the two of them cope while spending time together in bed trying to sleep, which for young men and women can be a difficult thing when you’ve had your whole bed to yourself your whole life. There’s a real charm in watching these two in the cold open going through that and seeing how much it means to Stiles, but also that realization that it’s all a dream since the two are in such a bad way right now.
With a bit of fallout from the virus attack as part of the dead pool, we get to see Scott’s father working through the FBI side of things with his use of deadly force, which also leads to a rather smart moment that has him questioning how Scott and his friends seemingly are able to process all of this far too easily and that they’ll need to talk about it eventually. Scott and the others are certainly capable of handling things based on what they’ve done before and it’s amusing to see Liam is unnerved by it all as well. Scott’s intent on getting more information about what’s going on and that has him doing the risky thing of going into the near death state in order to do it. Kira’s mother is pretty against it but wants to make sure things are done right while Liam is just freaking out over the kinds of crazy things that seem to be a part of being a werewolf. It’s also just kind of amusing to watch when it shows you the kind of crazy relationship that Scott and Kira can have at times since she’s basically killing him in a way. With him in this near death state though, he can do what’s needed, though it’s a real strain on his mother in that she has to go along with this.
Using his death as a way to get involved with the Benefactor and draw him out, it certainly is a decent plan that has a level of confirmation to it. Having Stiles and Argent connect with the assassin network to make the claim of killing the top of the list is also a fun pairing, though of course they want some sort of visual confirmation that Scott’s actually dead. which is going to put a new complication into the mix since there’s the time limit they have before the near death state becomes a real death state for Scott. Using him as bait in this way certainly has its merit, even if it means using the hospital as a potential battleground, since so many lives are at risk with the dead pool list. But it also has a different battleground that comes into play as Scott basically gets to dream while in this state and that means his subconscious gets to play with him a good deal – in the high school setting of course.
Those dreams are definitely not friendly for him as he has to face the idea of what it means to be a predator against his humanity that makes killing a choice. The events he’s faced this season certainly haunt him and there’s some legitimate things there he has to come to terms with by being an Alpha, one that has held onto more of his good humanity than others who were mostly made through baptisms of fire and pain. We see him go through a few situations that puts Liam in a bad place, but there’s some good character stuff as well as his mind works through his life, which has him thinking about Kira for a bit and wanting to really go on a date with her, to do something with her and connect in a good way.
The show does a decent job of balancing what’s going on in Scott’s mind with what’s going on in the hospital. That has Kira taken down in the fight against what’s coming to get Scott’s body as they hope that it’s the Benefactor looking for visual confirmation, but it takes its own twist when Kate shows up to get it instead. Argent is still pretty much in a panicked mode when she shows up since there’s a lot of uncertainty when it comes to just how intense she can get, though the two have their moments as they go at it. There’s almost a moment of humanity out of Kate in this when she deals with Argent as he explains some of what the plan is and how it can help her, which while not making her sympathetic at least shows she’s not completely stupid. All of it works towards the last few minutes though, where the fighting outside runs closer to what’s going on in Scott’s mind as the final minutes of his life run out. Unfortunately, things don’t work out for the best overall as they didn’t get the information they need and Kira’s mother was gravely wounded in the craziness that goes on regularly in the hospital.
This episode works its subplots fairly well. One of them gives us a little time with Malia busting into Peter’s safe in order to get the adoption papers so she can figure out what’s going on. She and Peter have a kind of amusing standoff with each other that adds just a little more to the love/hate relationship viewers can have with Peter. Peter has his own goals here and his playing with Malia gives her some valuable information in the search for her mother, which goes by the name of the Desert Wolf. We also get some time with Lydia as she’s working through her issues, which included the discovery last episode of a black and white picture of Meredith that her mother had in the house. When she actually shows it to her mother, and she recognizes it, that’s certainly a shock since the whole Meredith situation feels pretty surreal. It gets even weirder when Lydia’s mother reveals that Lydia’s dead grandmother wanted Lydia to spread her ashes into the lake when she turned eighteen. With that day almost here, they start to do it anyway and that has Lydia realizing that they’re not human ashes but rather mountain ash. Clues upon clues abound here and Lydia’s role in this season is slowly coming to light.
Teenagers coming up with stupid and risky plans is no surprise and there are a few adults that go along with it because there is a kind of trust that has developed over time that gives them the leeway. As Kira’s mother says, they have to face these fights themselves because the alternative is to run away and that won’t help them in the end. Scott’s plan isn’t exactly a bad one here, but it puts him at significant risk physically and mentally with what he goes through. That keeps him busy for this episode and we get a lot of subplots running along as well. While Derek’s story has him still looking for a story and meaning, I really liked what we got out of Malia and Peter as well as what Lydia is starting to learn as she becomes a part of the bigger storyline. With just four episodes to go, things are going to start moving even faster, which is a kind of daunting prospect. This is a decent episode but it felt like it didn’t achieve some of what it needed to, even if Scott claims that it did.