Sunday, February 9, 2014

Teen Wolf - 3.17 - Silverfinger - Recap

Previously - Kira glowed in flash light, Stiles wrote the message for Barrow about Kira, demon shadow ninjas attacked the supernatural kids and tattooed them, while Argent had previous experience with them.

In a surprise move, Teen Wolf begins on a flashback told by a beat-up Argent to Allison, Scott, and Isaac. Argent was 18 when his very douchey dad, Grandpa Evil, sent him to a gun deal with Japanese mobsters called Yakuza. During the buy, the demon shadow ninjas appeared and started killing everyone, trying to get to the kumicho (boss). It may be the bloodiest cold open in Teen Wolf history. After slaughtering the kumicho, a Yakuza soldier called Katashi and Argent were able to hold them off long enough to escape. Argent shot one in the mask, shattering it, which revealed only darkness underneath. Hence why Argent has the broken mask. Argent: "I've known for awhile that Katashi was in the country. I spent yesterday trying to track him down." Isaac: "Doesn't look like he wanted to be found." Argent: "Not particularly, no." Yeah I'd say since you could barely walk through your own front door, Argent. He shows the teens the mask, which he plans to use to reintroduce himself to Katashi. Meanwhile Kira sneaks home in the wee hours of morning and has her own flashbacks to Scott driving her home. They stop to talk werewolves, and Kira asks to see Scott's werewolf face. Because it's totally not a secret or anything, Scott decides the perfect place to show her is in broad daylight next to a busy road. Are you kidding me? Why not create a Vimeo and tweet to all your friends, Scott? There is a reason "secret identity" starts with the word secret. Since it's a school day and they've already ditched at least 12 days in the first two months, Scott heads to Beacon Hills High. As he rides in, he's flanked by the Alpha Twins, who refuse to let him out of their sight - all day and all night. Congrats Melissa, you've inherited 2 more teen werewolves for a couple of days. Scott: "Is this about being in my pack?" Aiden: "This is about you being the target of demonic ninjas." Ethan: "You mean the demonic ninjas that pulled swords out of their chests and completely kicked our a**?" Aiden: "Yeah, those demonic ninjas." Bwaaahhh!!! I'm loving the Alpha Twins tonight.

Scott protests, saying the demon shadow ninjas (DSNs) are only active at night, so there's nothing to worry about until then. The Alpha Twins err on the side of caution, proving they absorbed some planning skills as alphas. Ethan: "Since this is our first experience with demonic ninjas, we're thinking we should probably play it safe." Aiden: "All day." Scott: "And all night." Scott reluctantly agrees, but says he needs to talk to Stiles first, alone. The twins protest but Scott pulls the "true alpha" card, making me groan, eye roll, and deep sigh all at the same time, and I'm still doing better than Stiles, who is mid-freak out. He goes to show Scott his "Kira target" handwriting but it's been erased. This freaks him out. I think they have awesome custodians at Beacon Hills High and need a technology grant to get SmartBoards. Neither Stiles nor I can explain the missing key to the science closet though. He had it last night. Or did he? Scott never saw it so unless Caitlin can confirm, the logical conclusion is that Stiles is still going crazy. Poor baby. His final proof is an article describing the bomb Barrow made, which contained the exact same material Stiles used in Coach's birthday prank. Let's pause to admire the awesomeness of the Teen Wolf writing staff for making that one-off comedy scene into something much greater. Kudos! Flo, the continuity fairy, is impressed. Scott recaps the crazy Stiles spouts and it does sound ridiculous. Still, this is Beacon Hills. Scott: "I don't want to sound like I'm trying to tell you that you're wrong but I don't think you're trying to kill people either." Stiles: "It was here. It was all here." Scott: "Dude, are you feeling okay? You're looking really tired." Stiles: "Yeah I'm fine. I just haven't been sleeping really." Scott: "Why don't you go home? Take a sick day or something." Ah, now Scott suggests truancy too. Good to know.

Back at the Argents, the Katashi problem looms large. How do you get in touch with a wise mafia hermit? Argent: "He's a paranoid recluse who barely steps outside the gates of his estate." He does have one weakness though, antique guns. Good thing Argent has those to spare. He already put the word out on a 17th century French flintlock dueling pistol. Can you get those on E-Bay? Argent hopes to get a meeting. Allison: "You're not going alone." Isaac: "Well if she's going, I'm going." Argent: "To be honest, I don't feel good about bringing either one of you." I wouldn't either. The last time you three worked together, you walked around a hospital for 30 minutes doing nothing. Still, it's Scott's life on the line so they all saddle up. Isaac: "Alright, let's go see if a paranoid Yakuza wants to put another gun in his collection." Scott, however, thinks that it might be Kira they are after much to the bewilderment of the Alpha Twins. Since Lydia is MIA this episode, it falls to them to be clueless because no one tells them what's happening. (Missed you, Lydia.) But even the alpha twins are more in the loop than Douche Dad, who complains on the phone about no one liking him and whose laptop took a picture of Scott and Kira breaking in last night. Oops, busted! Technological tattletales, bah!

None of this matters though because Stiles goes to see Melissa at the hospital in the best scene of the episode. He asks to see his doctor, but sadly he's out of town. When Stiles looks crushed at the news, Melissa realizes something is really wrong. Melissa: "Stiles, are you alright?" Stiles: "I don't…I don't know. I guess…I guess not really." Melissa: "Alright kiddo, alright come with me. It's okay." Awww, she called him kiddo! Stiles lists his symptoms which include blackouts, sleepwalking, and anxiety. Melissa: "Panic attacks?" Stiles: "Yeah, a couple. Oh and I temporarily lost the ability to read, but that might have had more to do with this giant magic tree. You know the whole human sacrifice thing." Melissa: "I recall something vaguely about that, yes." Well, one question answered. The parents do know their kids died to save them. Bet that was a hard conversation. Melissa asks how much he's been sleeping and he answers 8 hours total in three days. In another interesting visual shot, Stiles counts his fingers to be sure. It seems to be a theme in 3B. Melissa: "Been feeling irritable?" Stiles: "Yeah, possibly to the point of homicide." (You and me both, Stiles. This snow has to go.) Melissa: "Inability to focus?" Stiles: "No, the Adderol is not working."
Melissa: "Impulsive behavior?" Stiles: "More than my usual? Hard to tell." Ha! The trials of a severe ADHD kid. Melissa says she knows what's wrong. "Do you trust me?" Stiles: "When you're not holding a needle." Aww and ha! I love how strong the relationship between these two has gotten over the years. Melissa gives Stiles midazolam. Stiles: "Why did you give me a sedative?" Melissa: "Because you Stiles, are one profoundly sleep deprived young man. You need rest. You need it now. Lie down." Stiles: "Okay…okay, how long does it take to…oh, not long at all." She pulls the covers over him and Stiles grabs her hand. After she strokes his forehead, Stiles murmurs, "Thanks mom." And my heart breaks! Deep sigh. As Melissa looks over him tenderly, I am reminded why I love this show. The great character interactions and heart combined with loads of action make Teen Wolf must-see TV. Phenomenal scene!

Sadly, other things are afoot so I can't savor it. Argent, Allison, and Isaac get bad news that Katashi isn't coming to the meeting. Isaac: "Well he's a paranoid recluse. Shouldn't you be a little less surprised?" Ha, so true. Argent says it's Plan B time, which I instantly dread given how poorly Plan B has gone in the past. In the oddest scene EVER, some random bom chicka bow wow music plays as the camera pans to a slo-mo shot of the trunk popping open. With all that spectacle I expected at least a tiger to jump out. Nope, more alpha werewolves shadowing Scott as the scene turns to Beacon Hills High once more. Nice of Scott and the twins to uphold the typical 50% attendance rate, while Isaac and Allison meet mobsters and Stiles takes a nap. Why is it such a big deal to keep them in high school again? It's not like they're ever there. Anyway, Scott ditches the twins after Kira does some fancy motorcycle tinkering a la Allison in Unleashed. Hopefully Allison and Kira will bond over their felonious skills in the future. Speaking of, Allison and Argent strategize until Isaac interrupts, dressed in a suit. Isaac: "Guys, this isn't…this isn't going to work. I look ridiculous. I mean I look like I just stepped out of the last period of a Catholic prep school." Hmm, I have a different definition of ridiculous, Isaac. Allison pulls him aside for a pep talk. "Go in there with confidence and all they'll see is a boyish-looking man." Isaac: "Or a stupid teenager pretending to be a man. I don't want to get my head blown off by a bunch of Japanese fingerless mobsters." Bwah! Since the pep talk didn't work, it's kissing and public groping to inspire confidence. Urgh! In front of your dad? All that should inspire is a shotgun. And brain bleach. Still, Isaac struts in with the biggest sunglasses this side of the 70's, ready to deal. Ha! My laughing turns to sniffling as Melissa looks in on a sleeping Stiles. These two are awesome tonight. A quick check on his chart sends her off to Claudia Stilinski's files. She had the same symptoms before she died. Uh oh! I have no idea what this means but it cannot be good. Stiles WILL NOT DIE! You understand me show. Not happening!

As Isaac faces Katashi's right hand thug, who desperately needs a manicure, Scott and Kira prepare his home for the incoming demon ninja invasion. It's comprised mostly of locking doors and shutting windows. If I lived in Beacon Hills, my windows would be nailed shut, not wide open when no one was home, but I'm paranoid. Kira is as skeptical as I am. Scott reassures her that the ever-absent Deaton created a foolproof plan. Kira: "You had a vet put in your alarm?" Bwah! Scott: "Yeah sort of, but I can't arm it. Only my mom can." Oh that should inspire a lot of confidence, Scott. While they wait, they debate who the target is and Kira breaks out a fairytale book to exposit the kitsune. Apparently they can create fire or lightning by rubbing its tails together. Kira: "I don't have any tails." Ha! Only in Teen Wolf is this not assumed. Kira and Scott cute back and forth, being adorable. Kira: "Are you sure that's a good idea? You know foxes and wolves don't really get along." Scott: "That's just a drawing in a children's book." Over in the Warehouse of Gun Posturing, Isaac unveils his own tale of dueling brothers with input from Clawed Thug. Apparently, Katashi filled him in on the gun's history too. They offer Isaac $150,000 and to stall for time, Isaac says he needs to count it. Clawed Thug is not impressed. I'm too busy laughing to care. Who brings a dollar bill counter to a meeting? Clawed Thug shares the real gun story, involving werewolves and family honor. Isaac: "Well that is certainly better than the version that I heard." Agreed. Isaac tries to skedaddle but no dice. Luckily Argent and Allison find Katashi at that precise moment and Allison disarms him with a chain whip. Let that sink in for a moment. Bounce a loaded gun all over the floor. Sure, why not? Argent, you're lucky no one got shot. Isaac: "Guys, they have a werewolf too." Who doesn't these days? Argent: "All I want to do is talk." Katashi: "Taking out my security is not what I would call a good conversation starter." Ha! I like him already.

Back at Scott's boudoir, he leans in to kiss Kira but is interrupted by DoucheDad letting himself in. Seriously Melissa, change those locks. This feels like the lyrics to I Will Survive. Since Douche Dad's required to have terrible timing, he demands answers to why they broke in just as the sun sets. Welcome to the nightmare! Scott and DD debate his role in Scott's life as well as proper deadbeat dad protocol. Scott: "Go, get a warrant." DD: "I don't need a warrant. I'm your father." Scott: "No, you're a gene donor." Ouch, but true! Melissa, heretofore known as Den Mother (thanks Lilith), walks in on yet another tense McCall family argument. Please die Agent McCall. Amazingly a demon shadow ninja arrives to fulfill that wish, or at least stab him. Nice one! Sadly he can't finish the job because Derek literally slides into the fight. Best Entrance Ever! It's demon ninjas vs. werewolves part 2, but this time the wolves take a decisive lead. As the Alpha twins crash through a window to join the party, they all toss the DSNs out of the house. Melissa breaks a bottle of mountain ash, which considerately forms a straight line in front of the door. How convenient. Kira touches the supernatural force field, causing a spark but for now they are in a holding pattern. Good time for a chat. Scott: "Where the hell did you come from?" Derek: "From following you." Scott: "For how long?" Derek: "All day." Bwah! Now that's how you do surveillance, alpha twins. Melissa interrupts to say DoucheDad is bleeding out and won't make it until morning. They decide not to call Sheriff for fear that he might get hurt too. I second that decision. It's win-win.

Since nothing but staring is happening at Scott's, it's time for answers. Argent shows Katashi the broken mask and they reminisce. I'm too busy calculating that Argent and I are the same age. No wonder I like him. Katashi calls the demon shadow ninjas Oni, which is shorter but less cool, and says they cannot be stopped, way less cool. Katashi: "The Oni are a force of nature. You don't fight a tsunami. You endure it, and you hope that you're not destroyed in its path." He explains that the tattoo the Oni left on everyone simply means they are NOT the one the Oni are looking for. Hate to see what they do to the one they DO want. Katashi: "The Oni are looking for one who is no longer themselves." Argent: "What do you mean no longer themselves?" Katashi: "Possessed by a dark spirit." Ah great, break out the exorcism, salt, and holy water. Perhaps a nice devil's trap. The Winchesters can show you how. Katashi exposits 13 kinds of kitsune but only one matters, the nogitsune. Katashi: "Nogitsune draws its power from pain and tragedy, strife and chaos." In other words, it's evil. In order to get their money's worth from the actor portraying TeenArgent, it's back to flashbacks. Katashi wasn't planning to make a stand when Argent shot the demon mask. He planned to flee. By stalling the demons, Argent saved Katashi's honor and for that he owes him. As they prepare to leave, Katashi gives Argent one more piece of advice. "I will tell you one thing however. If there is a nogitsune among you, let the Oni destroy it even if it is your own daughter." Yikes! That's ominous.

As Argent gets answers, Aiden wants a few of his own. He has Kira touch the boundary again, and viola, secret's over. They know she's supernatural too. Aiden: "See that? She can't go through it either. So what are you?" Derek: "She's a kitsune, idiot. Use your eyes. You can see it all around her. The younger ones give off an aura. She just hasn't learned how to conceal it yet." Look at Derek rocking the knowledge. I love when they let him actually be competent. It's such a refreshing change. What isn't? Scott's love life halting the momentum, as we endure yet another conversation with Kira wondering if she's evil. Kira: "How are you so sure? How do you know I'm not the bad guy?" Scott: "I've seen the bad guys and you're not one of them." Let's find out she's a good guy and move on. It's not like they'd push for a villain spin-off. Meanwhile Derek dishes out some cold truths of his own. The alpha twins have a long haul to get his approval after murdering Boyd. They say they are there to protect Scott. Ethan: "We're trying to fight for him." Derek: "I'm sure you are. I'm sure you'd kill for him, but are you willing to die for him?" Um, why would they? This isn't a fall on your sword mentality, which is a refreshing twist from most genre shows. I'm all for strength in numbers. Not so much for cannon fodder. Well, except DoucheDad. He can stay on the front line, especially since he decides this is a great time to talk to Scott. He hints at the real reason he came back and I'm hoping it isn't supernatural. There's enough of that already. Melissa: "As usual your timing sucks. You're not talking to him, not like this so you stay awake and we are going to get you out of here as fast as we can." Well played, Mama McCall. You told him to both screw himself and keep living.

Tired of waiting, the Oni look for barrier weaknesses, finally getting a sword through. Ethan: "Guys, we have a problem." Yep. Good thing Allison calls, although her advice is to let the Oni tattoo them. Derek: "Scott, you're going to have to do something." Scott: "Don't do anything." Aiden: "Is he serious?" Ha! That was my response too. The Oni enter, Scott and Kira clasp hands, and they bravely face them together. As Scott falls to his knees, the alpha twins try to help but Derek stops them in a nice moment of trust. One check later and we can safely assume neither are nogitsune. Thankfully, we can now end that discussion. The Oni disappear; the crisis is averted, making it an ideal time for Stiles to wake from his nap. He walks down an empty hospital hallway, yelling for Melissa. It has all the hallmarks of a 3B nightmare, so my pulse accelerates. No way that wing should be empty. Perhaps it's because everyone is treating DoucheDad. Scott goes to find Stiles, but the Oni find him first. That happens when you randomly wander buildings at night, Stiles. Surrounded by 3 Oni, one reaches out for Stiles…who grabs the demon shadow ninja's hand. Whoa, those are some reflexes! His eyes are cold as he reaches inside the Oni's chest and pulls out…a lightning bug! Say what? Why are lightning bugs portents of doom of this show? What's next? Kittens. But I digress since DarkStiles totally annihilates these Oni without breaking a sweat. It's creepy and doesn't bode well for Stiles' future. Is he the nogitsune? Is it another nightmare? How come Stiles destroys these Oni, but the kumicho in the flashbacks was impaled by them? Why is Stiles the only one still affected by the nematon and what in the world does it have to do with his mother? All these questions have to wait because Scott walks in and snaps Stiles out of his trance. Scott: "Stiles, you okay?" Stiles: "Yeah, fine. What's been going on?" As they leave, a lightning bug dies on the floor and I fondly curse the Teen Wolf writers for keeping me in suspense for another week.

Sliverfinger was an episode full of exposition in order to establish the new mythology, however it rarely felt like it dragged in the first watch. It is a bit slower in the 3rd rewatch, but it keeps packing a punch. The scenes with Melissa were brilliant. They have really given her some great stuff to work with this season and I hope they continue it. The reveal that Stiles may be the nogitsune still has me reeling. I have learned not to take every twist and cliffhanger at face value on Teen Wolf, but there is great storytelling opportunity if they pursue this. I would love to see Dylan O'Brien meet the acting challenge of playing dual roles. Where do you think the story is heading? What would you like to see happen for the rest of the season. For me, if they are pursuing making a Dark Stiles storyline, I would like it to last for most of the season. This is one of those plots you can't rush, so to have it resolved in 2 episodes like the nematon aftereffects would be pointless. I look forward to the pack having to figure out what is going on with Stiles and then rescue him. Specifically I hope that Lydia figures it out and Scott rescues him, in a reversal of Motel California. All in all, this was a good building episode and I can't wait to see where it goes from here.

Grade: B+

Best Scene - Melissa takes care of Stiles, helping him sleep, and he calls her, "Mom" in his delirium

Best Moment - Derek keeps alpha twins from interfering with the Oni

Best Awww Moment - Stiles clutches Melissa's hand as she pulls the covers over him

Best Reaction - Mama McCall to Stiles calling her, "Mom."

MVP - Melissa

Best Character Interaction - Melissa and Stiles

Most Bloody Opener - Demon ninjas strike down everybody, well except Argent and Wise Hermit

Biggest Question - What the heck is going on with Stiles the Lightning Bug Killer and what does it have to do with his dead mom?

The "Oh Please" Award - Scott hints that as a True Alpha he has grand powers like being all-knowing that other alphas don't. The only thing worse would be if it were true.

The "Secret Talent" Award - Kira disables the Alpha Twins' bikes. She and Allison have more than Scott in common.

Most Interesting Visual Shot - Stiles counting his fingers

The "Why Bother" Award - Plan B never works on any genre show. Just skip to Plan E (Wing It) and save yourself some time.

The "Time to Bring Back the Vocabulary Lessons" Award - Isaac needs a refresher on what the word ridiculous means.

The "This is the Big Bad?" Award - dead lightning bug

The "Déjà vu" Award - Melissa walks in on a tough conversation between Scott and his dad. "Be your own anchor," guys.

Best Entrance - Derek slides right into the fight at Scott's house

Best Magic Trick - the mountain ash goes down in a straight line once thrown

Screencaps by

About the Author - Dahne
One part teacher librarian - one part avid TV fan, Dahne is a contributing writer for SpoilerTV, where she recaps, reviews, and creates polls for Sleepy Hollow, Arrow, White Collar, Grimm, Teen Wolf, and others. She's addicted to Twitter, live tweets a multitude of shows each week, co-hosts the Sleepy Hollow "Headless" and Teen Wolf "Welcome to Beacon Hills" podcasts for Southgate Media Group, and guests on ArrowCast for DVMPE. Right now she is creating a Last Week in TV column for her blog and SpoilerTV. ~ "I speak TV."

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