Thursday, March 6, 2014

Teen Wolf - 3.21 - The Fox and the Wolf - Recap

Note: I combined most flashback scenes in chronological order to make the sequencing work better.

Previously - Stiles' MRI terrified Sheriff, Scott protested Stiles entering Eichen House, Stiles and Malia found the nogitsune's corpse, Stiles recognized someone in its picture, everything is about "chaos, strife, and pain," and Kira's mom believes Kira can kill the nogitsune.

In 1943, one soldier annoys another by telling lame riddles. I sympathize. I'm riddled out. It's particularly in bad taste since they are hauling away dead bodies, lots of bodies, a pile of bodies. They grab gasoline to torch them when suddenly Mummy Mouth appears. Soldier #2, Hayes, shoots at it, but it keeps coming, turning the gun on the soldier. Soldier #1, Merrick, has it worse. Mummy Mouth: "What has a neck but no head?" Squelp, off goes his head. Gross, Teen Wolf. I was eating. Possibly the sickest cold open we've had. Things don't get better in the present time. A fly buzzes around Kira's dad, which generally signifies horrible death in Beacon Hills. Seriously if it's small and flies, it's lethal there. HistoryDad slams a book on it, but since DarkStiles enters I'd say his troubles are only beginning. DarkStiles: "Coming in on a Saturday. That's dedication." That's stupid in this school. Remember how Blake's overtime got her trapped in the basement with werewolves. Or how about SPNKrissy dying because she wanted to practice cello more. Hard work isn't rewarded at Beacon Hills High. DarkStiles wants Kira's mom's last tail so he starts going through the books. DarkStiles: "I know what they are. Physical representation of her tails. However the hell that works." Yeah, I don't get it either. HistoryDad points DarkStiles to the library but he's on a mission. "The older the tail, the stronger the Oni. Am I right? I know there's one left. I know it's the strongest." HistoryDad still plays dumb but nogitsune's have magical fly resurrection powers. The once squashed fly zooms into HistoryDad, choking him and sending him to his knees. DarkStiles: "You'll talk. They always talk." That's cold. Really cold. DarkStiles keeps his perfect record on creeping me the heck out. Back at Kira's, Scott recaps the last episode as we finally get to see the picture. It appears to be Kira and an American soldier. Sadly, there is no Malia to be found. Scott: "It sounds like it all goes back to your family." You have no idea, buddy.

They are interrupted by a text from Kira's mom, telling them to bring magic mushrooms to the school. Yes, you read that right. No, the next flashback isn't in the 60's. These 'shrooms can save him from a nogitsune fly. Scott is shocked Stiles did this but MommaFox has no illusions. She smartly removed the last tail from the book and now keeps it on her person. Kira demands the truth, while Scott pulls out the photo. Kira: "Is it grandma?" MommaFox: "No. It's me." Say what? That's some funky math there. Scott: "If that's you, you'd have to be like 90 years old." MommaFox: "Closer to 900." Kira: "Okay, sure. Why not?" Ha! Right there with you. Nothing surprises in Teen Wolf anymore. Kira: "Dad, how old are you?" HistoryDad: "43, but I've been told I look mid-30's." Bwah! Have I said how much I love these parents? MommaFox dumps the shattered sword blade they took from Mummy Mouth's body, the one she used to stop him. Scott finally catches up, realizing this isn't the nogitsune's first trip to Beacon Hills. MommaFox brings up the Oak Creek Interment Camp and Scott calls HistoryDad out on misleading Allison and Isaac. HistoryDad: "Allison's family has a certain history of violence. I didn't know if she could be trusted." Hmm, says the man with a 900 year old warrior wife. Apparently HistoryDad met Kira's mom while researching Oak Creek for his dissertation. Kira asks about the nogitsune. MommaFox: "Isn't it obvious yet?" Umm no, not really. She begins her story but her prime focus is the broken blade. She tries to get Kira to fix it, but Kira wants answers now! HistoryDad agrees, supplying the most important info of the night. MamaFox is named Noshiko. Thanks HistoryDad. Now if only you would get a name. Noshiko is leery of sharing insider secrets with a werewolf, but let's face it. Secrets never go over well in Beacon Hills. HistoryDad: "But allies however unlikely should be welcomed, especially in time of war." She agrees and continues the story.

Flashback - As soldiers unload a supply truck, Noshiko pilfers a few items to share with internment camp residents. She also snatches a baseball for a kid named Michio. A woman about her age scolds her for being too reckless, and an older woman named Satomi concurs. "You take too frequently and you take too much." Noshiko stole aspirin for her but she refuses it, saying that she knows Noshiko sees her as weak for obeying rules. Satomi calls Noshiko a fox, which makes me wonder if they all know her true nature. That seems risky. Maybe they are related instead. The argument ends abruptly as Michio accidentally throws the ball through the window. A fluster of nervous activity ensues as they hide contraband before the MP's from the cold open arrive. Merrick is a lecherous sod, so I have no sympathy for his demise. Corporal Rhys, however, seems decent. Over the protest of Hayes, he orders an inspection for the morning, giving them time to stash the stolen merchandise, and tosses the ball back to the kid. Rhys: "This is a relocation center, not a prison." Merrick: "You can call it a summer camp if it makes you feel better…sir." Yeah, glad you died. As they leave, Satomi continues, saying Noshiko will reap what she sows. But surprise, it's gets even worse. Noshiko and Corporal Rhys have a Romeo and Juliet affair going that can only lead to disaster. Rhys repeats Satomi's speech via Japanese proverb this time. "The stake that sticks out gets hammered down." The missing items have been noticed so Noshiko agrees to give back the aspirin with Rhys' help. After all, he pilfered some chocolate. Rhys: "I thought you liked it when I'm tough." Noshiko: "I like chocolate more." Ha! As they kiss to musical crescendo, Kira calls a time out. Kira: "Stop, just stop. We don't want to hear your Casablanca story." I immediately think Princess Bride. Kid: "Is this a kissing book?" Sorry, it's an 80's law that any time a Princess Bride reference can be made, it must be. Scott accuses Noshiko of stalling so the Oni can attack Stiles. HistoryDad counters that Stiles is gone but no way that's true. Save Stiles! Scott asks Noshiko to call off the Oni, but she refuses. Noshiko: "When you hear the rest of the story, you won't want me to." Yeah I'm pretty sure I will, lady.

Meanwhile at the precinct, Argent and Derek are released but Parrish is still cautious. He refuses to give Argent back his cattle prod, even though Argent insists it's for hunting. Parrish: "Yeah well I'm pretty sure you could use it to jump start a 747." Bwah! I love Parrish, which means I also add him to the characters I fear for. Please live. Argent reminds him all charges has been dropped, although he doesn't know how or why. Sheriff breaks in to say it was him. Hmm, what? I thought it was a federal case. There Teen Wolf goes jumping jurisdictions at the drop of a hat again. Parrish: "I'm not kidding. This thing's a few watts from being a light saber." HAAA!!! Sheriff takes Derek and Argent back to his office, where he shares the results of Stiles' MRI. It is the exact same brain scan as his mom's. Derek: "I'm guessing this isn't possible." Sheriff: "Not even remotely." Argent: "So the trickster's still playing tricks." Yikes that nogitsune is crafty. Even better, check that off the list as one theory I got right this season. They are few and far between so I like to celebrate when it happens. Derek questions why the nogitsune would bother, but Sheriff theorizes, "When I was in the army, an officer told me if you want to defeat an enemy you don't take away their courage. You take away their hope." Sheriff worries the nogitsune will take away Stiles' hope in a battle for his mind as well as his body. Can't the poor boy get a break. Argent brings up the wounded; Derek brings up the dead. They have a point. Sheriff: "I need you to help me stop them." Argent: "And by stop him, you mean trap him." Well yeah, he doesn't mean kill him, Argent! Sheriff hands Argent back his light saber as they agree to help.

Heading back to Argent's apartment, Allison joins them. Argent wants Derek to follow Stiles' scent from Eichen House, but Derek reminds them they've been tricked by the nogitsune before. Still they need to find Stiles before the Oni. Argent: "That's the problem. We're all trying to outfox the fox." Sheriff says it's okay if they want to back out, but of course they're all in. Derek: "I'm not going to be the first wolf to run from a fox." Argent: "Apparently I'm carrying a light saber." Bwah! Allison suggests they split up in a nice show of matriarchal leadership. Argent and Derek to Eichen House; Sheriff and herself to the hospital. They'll meet at the school later. In the elevator, Sheriff compliments Allison on her strength. "I don't know how you guys do it. You're all so strong, You're fearless. Hell, you even manage to keep your grades up." Allison admits to failing econ, so Sheriff vows to talk to Coach for her. That's the least of Allison's worries though as she breaks down. Sheriff stops the elevator to comfort her and she talks of putting on a brave face when inside she's terrified and confused. She doesn't know how to help Isaac or if breaking up with Scott was a good plan. She is afraid for her dad and leery of Derek. Basically she has way too much pressure on her for any teenager. Oh baby. I feel for you. Sheriff gives her the hug I want to and it's so heartwarming. Sheriff: "You know what's funny? You sound just like a cop." Awww, that makes Allison laugh and she pulls herself together once more. Sheriff: "Hey, you're going to be okay." I certainly hope that's true. Kudos to both actors for such a great scene. Before they can go, Sheriff gets a notice from his home security. DarkStiles waves to the camera through the cell phone. Uh oh.

But no time for Stiles tonight because it's all about flashbacks. Noshiko continues her forbidden love story, getting so upset she cuts her hand in the process. HistoryDad gives her a handkerchief but she magically heals herself. Kira has the power as well, since she has never gotten sick unlike in…the flashback. Noshiko and Rhys practice French in a Jeep, which is just missing the sweating glass to turn it into a Titanic scene. Mercifully they're interrupted by the douche MP's and Shady Doctor, who is selling medical supplies on the black market. Great! Of course it also presages a pneumonia outbreak in the camp. The medicine needed was sold already, so the kid Michio dies as the baseball drops from his hand. When Noshiko explains what's happening, a riot breaks out. Michio's father creates a Molotov cocktail and when the doctor arrives, the internees mob his car. He tells the MP's to shoot as Rhys tries to control the situation. Michio's dad starts to put down the explosive, but Merrick hits Satomi. She reveals herself to be a werewolf and throws the Molotov cocktail, igniting Rhys to Noshiko's horror. The soldiers commence shooting and a mass of people die. Noshiko is shot many times, requiring time for her body to heal. Because of that, she's put in the dead pile. Rhys however is not as lucky. He slowly dies from his burns with nothing to ease the pain. The doctor sold the morphine too. In time honored tradition, EvilDoctor, Merrick, and Hayes escaped the slaughter, intensifying Noshiko's desire for revenge. As the MP's try to cover up the murder, Noshiko calls out for the nogitsune to use her body for vengeance. It chooses Rhys instead. Rhys becomes Mummy Mouth as we continue the cold open scene. What they failed to show was him stealing the Jeep. Ha! Sadly he goes on a murder spree before Noshiko kills him with Satomi's help, breaking the sword in the process. The nogitsune spirit transforms into a fly, which she catches.

Noshiko stops the story to beg Kira's help in restoring the sword. Kira: "Why don't you just do it yourself?" Mom: "Because I'm not a thunder kitsune." Well that answers another question, but it doesn't help Kira's family issues. Kira: "I just found out you're 900 years old. I don't think I'm ever going to trust you again." Mom: "Trust me on this." Kita places her hands above the katana and it's magically fixed. She's got a real future in metalwork. Noshiko says the sword is Kira's along with her power, so she and Scott can kill Stiles if the Oni can't. Scott points out Noshiko didn't give them any options. Noshiko: "You want to save Stiles? Kill him. That's the only way." Oh hell no, lady. Meanwhile the other Save Stiles Team gathers at Sheriff's, where he explains the chessboard. I laugh in memory of that great scene in 3A. Strikingly Isaac is now off the board. Derek's more concerned that he as king is one move from checkmate. No killing Derek. Argent calls it a threat, but Allison thinks it's a clue. Stiles is at Derek's loft. Argent: "This couldn't sound any more like a trap." Good point, but Sheriff holds on to all the hope he can get, talking about the nogitsune's lack of motive and saying that killing is just a by-product of chaos. Derek: "If you're trying to say it won't kill us, I'm not feeling too confident about that." Neither am I, Derek. I fear for you all. Sheriff: "All we need to do is come up with a new punch line." Umm, keep telling yourself that, Sheriff. I hope it doesn't kill you all. Allison texts Scott the info and he and Kira leave. Scott: "There's a way to save him. There has to be." You tell her! A final flashback has Noshiko running to the nemeton to bury the nogitsune fly. Kira's dad warns, "History has not done well with making children into killers." Noshiko points out that it was Scott, Stiles, and Allison sacrificing themselves that reawakened the nogitsune. They have played in chaos and pain long before this. Noshiko: "They let the demon out of its cage." As the scene changes to Derek's loft, Sheriff opens the door. DarkStiles turns around. "Hi dad."

Thud, that was my heart hitting the ground. Teen Wolf is killing me these days. I fear for all the main characters and each episode brings more stress. There is no other show I am watching as intense as 3B has been. That said, this was not a good episode for me when compared to the rest of Teen Wolf. It committed the cardinal sin of boring me, which is something this show almost never does. I thought the flashbacks, while containing important answers, were far too long. They could have shared the same info in half the time, leaving us more room to see the characters I actually know and care about it. The Romeo and Juliet romance was another dud. It was so clich├ęd that I could predict everything that happened, right up to the part where she called down the nogitsune. In fact, the whole of the flashbacks contained cardboard, stock characters who acted exactly like every other tired story before them. Evil doctor who sells off much needed supplies, check. Lecherous soldier violating the innocent, pure internee, check. Handsome hero with superior moral standing, check. Sassy, rash heroine looking to improve things without thinking through the consequences, wise older woman advising, innocent kid death - check, check, check. If you are going to spend this much time with one-off characters at least make them interesting. Not surprisingly I find this episode as poorly done as Visionary, the last episode that was chock full of flashbacks. The only really good thing about this is we've now gotten the majority of the information dump done, so now we can push straight into what this part of the season is all about…saving Stiles!

Grade: C-

MVP - answers
Best Scene - Allison breaks down in the elevator and Sheriff comforts her
Best Reaction - Kira to learning her mom is 900
Best Reason to Fast Forward - Romeo and Juliet: The Internment Years
Scene Stealer - Parrish
Most Humorous - HistoryDad
Best Surprise - Satomi the werewolf

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."

No comments:

Post a Comment