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Thursday, 24 November 2016

Teen Wolf S6E2: Superposition

Teen Wolf
Series 6, Episode 2

After an episode focused heavily on Stiles, and introducing us to the men in silly hats who will be our villains this year, we pick up again for our first Stiles-free episode. I had kind of hoped we'd get some kind of scene with Stiles -- Dylan O'Brien's name is in the opening credits, after all -- but we didn't, and the episode felt rather lacking because of it.

In the days after Stiles' disappearance, nobody remembers him, but Scott, Malia, and Lydia all find themselves acutely aware of his absence. As they become more and more aware of the gap in their memories, Lydia starts suffering from banshee visions. Meanwhile, Mason and Cody end up seeing the Hunt, who are visible to Cody when he's invisible, and end up on the hunt for another missing student, and in so doing discover that those taken by the Hunt end up occupying a quantum superposition, where they both exist and do not exist until they are observed. Meanwhile, Parrish attempts to hunt down a killer who stuffed a body into the high school vents.

Let's start with the Parrish plot first, because it barely comes up in this episode but it's incredibly weird when it does, and not in a good, wholesome way. So, Mason and Cody go to see Parrish, who is weirdly flippant with them for no particular reason, and who says that he has a nice, normal case to be working on, to which Mason says that the killer bludgeoned a man to death and stuffed his body in the school vents.

The woods are a charming place.

This is very much presented as information the audience should already know -- there's no dramatic weight behind anything Mason says, despite the hefty subject matter, so it's like he's reaffirming a plot point from the first episode, except I have zero memory of this subplot even being mentioned in the first episode. It's as if it was a major part of the first episode and then got cut out, but nobody bothered to do any rewrites on the second episode to warrant it.

It's also bizarre that Parrish would be so flippant about a supernatural threat. Even before he knew he was a Hellhound -- who we've established are part of the Wild Hunt -- he wasn't this flippant, so the fact that he is now, especially when it comes to dealing with things closely related him, seems bafflingly out of character.

The rest of the Mason and Cody plotline is actually a highlight of the episode. The two make a very cute couple, and their storyline shows us more about the Wild Hunt than the arguable A-plot with Scott and company, and gives us a nice in-depth look at what goes into sleuthing after the identity of somebody they and everybody else have forgotten. We even get a moment of pitched dramatic tension when they're both invisible and watching the Wild Hunt, and we have no way of knowing if the Hunt can see them or not.

Not seen, a photo with a very obvious space for a missing person in it.

We get some nice moments with Liam, too, as he disapproves of Cody, feeling that Cody abandoned them when Mason needed help, and that as a former member of Theo's chimera pack, he's not necessarily trustworthy. The bonding moments between them are pretty brief, but work surprisingly well despite that, actually.

That plotline also gives us a nice moment with Coach Finstock and his weird yet startlingly open-minded insistence that Mason and Cody should spend their time picking up girls, boys, or whomever else, and not studying.

That leaves us with the Scott, Lydia, and Malia plotline to talk about, and there's actually not a lot to say about it, because it's heavy on style and low on actual plot. Most of the episode is taken up with Scott and Malia having an indefinable feeling that somebody's missing, with Scott getting things he knew about Stiles mixed up with things he know about other people, and Malia doing things like spooning with young men like she spooned with Stiles, and so on.


Only Lydia gets any meat to her plot, as she becomes haunted by an empty chair, and eventually by visions of a doctor (lower case 'd') sitting in the chair and emitting weird, screaming noises -- all culminating in a scene where she hallucinates her last moments with Stiles, but can't see him. 

When Malia and Scott start putting concrete evidence, such as Malia's old full-moon-hiding-place with chains that require another person to lock it, and Scott's fractured memories of the night he and Stiles went out to find a body, we get Lydia doing -- some automatic writing? Because that's the kind of nonsense that happens in Teen Wolf. It's not the most exciting turn, but it's fine.

Shippers also get cause to rejoice, I guess, as Lydia confirms that she loved Stiles.

Anyway, that's the second episode. The next episode will apparently have Scott telling the Sheriff about Stiles, or at least what he knows about him, and the Wild Hunt (I refuse to call them Ghost Riders) causing hijinks.

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