What They Say:
Frenemy – Scott and Stiles work to protect their friends when new information is revealed; Allison is tasked to investigate.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the revelation about Jackson being the shapesihfter, it’s definitely cleared up oneo f the bigger questions of the season so far and avoided drawing it out for the whole season. It does bring its own questions into play, which was a great little tease at the end. But it also showed us just how unready the pack that Derek has put together for himself is. They’ve had some fun style and bits of action so far, but a lot of what they’ve had to deal with has been Scott restraining himself as he’s mostly had to deal with them in school and other public areas.
The fight with Jackson as the shapeshifter certainly becomes more complicated at the start here. While Derek gives it good chase and certainly deals with it as well as he can, the thing is very dynamic in what it can do to recover and move around, making the more ground based Derek problematic in getting to it. Where it goes off the rails though is when Argent arrives and takes it down with a full clip of bullets, which gets Derek to disappear rather than get involved with him. But even Scott and Stiles are chasing after them as well, but it’s even more problematic since the shapeshifter isn’t something that’s easily killed and it’s able to recover quickly. Worse still for Scott is that as he tries to get closer to dealing with it, Argent didn’t come along as Gerard is there and that just leaves us with a great if brief moment of eye contact.
Surviving the overall limited window that exists when Jackson is the shapesihfter isn’t easy, but you also have to feel that dealing with Jackson in his normal form may be even more dangerous. Keeping him chained up out in the woods in a police van is an amusing way to do things, but it’s important to be able to keep him out of sight while they try and figure out what they can do. While it’s bad for Jackson, and for Stiles who had to deal with his junk, it also makes things more complicated for Allison as Gerard sees the situation as one that can be used to their advantage by pitting the shapeshifter and Derek against each other. And Gerard is intent on using Allison to get closer to things in his own threatening way, which is amusing to watch play out.
The show works through some good character issues while everyone is trying to hide Jackson and it actually works better than expected. While Scott, Allison and Stiles try to work things out with what’s going on, understanding that there is something bigger going on that they don’t know about and can’t piece together yet. The dialogue they have over it with Jackson listening in actually humanizes him pretty well in a way that’s been needed and nudged at in small ways. He’s not been a completely unsympathetic character, but he’s also getting the clue now that he’s ended up in this position through a lot of his own actions. And he’s also coming to grips that there’s a reality to what he’s being told about which is going to shift his position in the dynamic in a potentially interesting way.
The series reaches an interesting stage of its evolution where the characters of Scott’s pack are now getting to the point where they have to draw in the adults as the situation is getting out of hand. There’s a lot of little things going on here, from Danny’s involvement to the growing shift in control that Gerard is exercising over events. Jackson kind of steals the show here, rightly so with the developments that are made, and it also starts to explore more of what the real situation is when it comes to what he’s seeking out. Everyone gets their share of time in the spotlight here while still keeping it all to an ensemble feeling in a very big way. The various storylines playing out here work well together, each adding more to the overall narrative, and this one pushes things forward in a big way while still keeping it largely grounded. Each episode ends with me desperately wanting more.
Teen Wolf , Full Episodes