Is it possible to live a normal life when danger was always around the corner? That's part of the premise behind the third season of MTV's "Teen Wolf," which stumbled slightly because of too many plots and villains in the first half of the season. Hopefully, the rest of the season will resolve most of those issues when it airs this winter.
"Teen Wolf" followed Scott McCall (Tyler Posey) as he continued to deal with adjusting to his growing supernatural powers as a werewolf that made him a target of Deucalion (Gideon Emery) who wanted Scott to join his pack of lethal werewolves. Deucalion made sure that Scott and his fellow werewolf friend Derek Hale (Tyler Hoechlin) knew that they both needed to decide whether to join the pack or die fighting. Luckily, Scott had his best friend Stiles Stilinski (Dylan O'Brien) and his ex-girlfriend Allison Argent (Crystal Reed) to support him as he continued to explore what he was capable of. Deucalion had allies in supernatural twins Ethan and Aidan (Charlie and Max Carver), as well as the dangerous Kali (Felisha Terrell). Sadly, Deucalion's pack wasn't the only threat that Scott and his friends had to deal with. They also had to contend with a mysterious supernatural force who was killing various Beacon Hills residents in ritual sacrifices that had no true connection. Allison's friend Lydia Martin (Holland Roden) had supernatural powers that was leading her closer to the truth and placed her in greater danger. How will Scott and his friends be able to deal with the fallout once the dust settles on the final confrontation?
In terms of questions, "Teen Wolf" was full of them as the first half of the season progressed, but the large number of villains threatened to ruin the season before it began. The show should have focused on one villain instead of two to make sure that viewers weren't too distracted by the excessive plots. It's a shame because Emery's Deucalion had the promise of being a dangerous character viewers would likely love to hate. Unfortunately, viewers didn't get to see much of him beyond being a mysterious dark force with a lust for blood. Let's hope that Emery will get a chance to flesh out his character in the upcoming episodes because there was potential that hasn't been explored yet. The show's extensive number of villains also left certain stories only be merely introduced, such as the arrival of Scott's long absent father and the return of Allison's evil grandfather. The show also managed to give Daniel Sharman's Isaac a story of his own with his former off-screen girlfriend Reed that proved that Allison could potentially have chemistry with more than just one werewolf. Sharman and Reed had a comfortable rapport that helped add some levity to some of the show's darker stories. This story could also cause some potential drama down the line for Scott, Allison and Isaac. Fingers crossed that the show will continue to explore this story in the latter half of the season. Only time will tell if that's the case.
As for breakout stars, Posey, Roden and O'Brien led the pack as their characters learned to accept what they were capable of and to face their fears. Posey has managed to give Scott a realistic confidence that showcased his character's fear and willingness to sacrifice himself to protect others. His most memorable scene came in the midseason finale when he had to align himself with a potential enemy in order to save his friends and loved ones. Posey expressed Scott's fear and frustration with quiet acceptance that he would always have to make difficult choices whether he wanted to or not. Roden, on the other hand, has allowed Lydia to evolve from being a mere stereotype into someone that viewers could root for. She also had a comfortable rapport with O'Brien and the rest of the cast that allowed her to fit into just about any story that came her way. O'Brien's Stiles managed to provide more than comic relief this time around as his character grappled with the possibility that the character could lose his father. He expressed Stiles' fear and heartbreak as he dealt with the idea that made him almost lose all reason. Roden and O'Brien shared a touching scene where Lydia tried to comfort her friend that led to an unexpected kiss that won't likely be repeated for a while. Hopefully, viewers will get the opportunity to see Roden and O'Brien explore their on-screen relationship, friendly or otherwise.
"Teen Wolf" aired its midseason finale on August 19th at 10:00 PM on MTV. New episodes are scheduled to air on January 6, 2014.
Verdict: Despite a complicated premise, the cast still managed to salvage the first half of the third season by focusing on the bond between the characters and how it will continue for the rest of the season.
TV Score: 3 out of 5 stars
1 Star (Mediocre)
2 Stars (Averagely Entertaining)
3 Stars (Decent Enough to Pass Muster)
4 Stars (Near Perfect)
5 Stars (Gold Standard)