Monday, July 6, 2015

Teen Wolf - 5.02 - Parasomnia - Recap

Previously - the premiere was awesome! In other news, senior year is starting, Scott worries things will get bad and they do, another new kid wants to be in Scott's pack, Walled Werewolf tries to use his Day-Glo claws to de-power Scott, it doesn't work, and steampunk scientists kill him for failing. Tough gig.

Note - Some scenes are shifted slightly out of order in this recap to combine themes. Oh and there's a significant rant in here, so skip from where it says (begin rant) to where it says (end rant) and you won't miss anything but me kvetching.

Panning in on another random teen, Science Mom talks GPA and college admission requirements. Back up, folks. She no longer teaches science? Well there goes that name. I swear 5 people run this entire school. Now what should I call her because the fandom name, Mama Hot Pants, does not work for me? For now, it's GCM (Guidance Counselor Mom or Guidance Counselor Martin, you pick) although she'll probably head the music department next week. Anyway GCM babbles while the teen hyperventilates over her night terrors, aka parasomnia. Yet another vocab lesson from Teen Wolf. Tracy flashes back to dreams of skylight birds and a creepy steampunk scientist. She tries to fall asleep but the skylight comes open and in true teen fashion, she stands on her tiptoes on a wobbly chair to close it. Forget the birds, honey. You're going to break your neck. It's beyond time to crash on the couch. GCM asks about the skylight but it's been water sealed and can't open. She pooh poohs Tracy's anxiety as typical senior stress but Tracy doesn't buy it, especially when she pukes black goo and feathers all over GCM's desk. Blech! Tracy: "Is this common?" Ha! Meanwhile, Scott remembers he has a job. I practically forgot too, Scott. It's a good thing your boss believes in flexible hours and is so cryptic I still don't know if he's evil or good. He coaches Scott through giving a little kid's dog a shot, who promptly bites him, and the girl calls him Dr. McCall. Awww. Back to business, Deaton exposits Walled Werewolf's eagle talons. He also claims that only Liam can siphon off Scott's power. Scott: "Well, what if I let someone into my pack, like another beta?" If you're thinking Theo, stop right there. Just NO!!! Deaton: "I would normally say no but I'm starting to wonder if the rules to our supernatural world aren't as rigid as I once thought or maybe someone's trying to change those rules." Um, you mean the writers every single season? Canon is not particularly strong on this show.

Over at the station, Stiles isn't getting any more answers than Scott. He wants Sheriff to run a background check on Theo's family. "Dad, this kid is a werewolf." Sheriff: "Your best friend is a werewolf. You are dating a werecoyote. I still don't know what Kira's supposed to be. When the flying monkeys come soaring through this station, you will have my undivided attention. Until then, just go to school." BWAAHH! Stiles goes on the detective offense, noticing something different about Sheriff. He violates the personal bubble so much that I thought he was going to sniff Sheriff like a werecreature. Sheriff tells him to back off as not all werecreatures are his problem. Yeah Sheriff, that's wishful thinking. To finally get Stiles off his back, he agrees to have Parrish look into it. Sadly for Stiles' case, all he finds is a speeding ticket and even Malia knows that's nothing. Malia: "Well how many tickets do you have?" Stiles: "None." Malia: "How many would you have if your dad didn't get you out of them?" Stiles: "17." Yikes! You're a menace to the road, Stiles. Malia tries to sympathize by mentioning how hot Theo is, thus making everything worse so she tries a different tactic. "You want me to torture him." Stiles: "No, I don't want you to torture him." Malia: "I'm pretty sure I can take him." Ha! I'm sure you could. Stiles prefers the police method of finding the clues and catching him in the act. I prefer the "kill him before he comes between Scott and Stiles" method myself. Just saying. Stiles is insistent that this kid is not the kid he knew in 4th grade. That's good enough for me. I've watched this show long enough to know to trust Stiles' instincts. Never doubt Stiles or Lydia.

Scott remains blissfully unaware of Stiles' mission as he enters school in slow-mo for NO REASON. Kira meets him and they savor their last first day. Mason is more focused on understanding what the heck happened in season 4. If you figure it out, please let the rest of us know. At least he's savvy enough to realize Lydia has answers. I wish the pack did. Liam unsuccessfully tries to put him off. Mason: "I was attacked by an armor-plated giant wearing a bear skull. It left an impression." Ha! So Liam distracts him with the Beacon Hills soccer team as I wonder when they got another sport. It's pointless fluff. Likely so is Malia's driving lesson with HistoryDad. Wait, he's the Drivers' Ed teacher too. I rest my case; 5 adults run the entire school. No way I'd teach Drivers' Ed ever, but especially not to post-traumatic supernaturals. Mid-lesson Malia hallucinates, which some claim is PTSD but I think is a Lydia-induced vision. GCM's cold open speech has to mean something, right? Either way, HistoryDad can't leave the car fast enough. Malia: "How'd I do?" Looking over the mass of cone destruction left behind, I'm venturing….not well. HistoryDad: "There's room for improvement." Ha! Back in his history class, New Kid 924 makes Liam nervous and gums his chair. This subplot's snoozeworthy so let's just say she's ticked about 6th grade. Moving on. Scott also takes a seat…in AP Biology as the class and I side eye him. Lydia silent conversations Kira into asking Scott if he's lost. Ha! I like Kira better when she's with Lydia. Still I have no idea why Lydia wasn't sitting next to Kira in the first place. Cold. Lydia: "Do you know what AP stands for?" Bwah! For the record Scott, your friends think you're a lovable idiot. I do too since he obviously went to the Malia school of highlighting. (Who lets kids highlight high school textbooks? Those suckers have to last 20 years.) New science teacher shocks me by stumping even Lydia and plans to give a test the next day to weed out kids who shouldn't be in there. A dejected Scott sits outside until Stiles fetches him to corner Theo.

Meanwhile Tracy's night terrors begin to haunt her daytime. Never a good sign. As she opens her locker, the lights go out and black goo runs down. A steampunk soldier crawls towards her as she tells herself it's just a dream. Luckily Lydia notices and snaps her out of it, but not before Tracy's locker sports vicious claw marks. Say what? At the guidance office, Lydia and her mom argue about Tracy mostly because GCM spouts some of the most utter nonsense ever heard on Teen Wolf. She explains Tracy's goo vomit as eating her pillow while my head hits my desk. Are you kidding me? Plus she didn't even send Tracy to the nurse. What the heck, lady? You suck as a counselor. She does suggest that Tracy may need professional help and Lydia takes that to mean Parrish. The girls meet him at her house where he finds a scratched up roof, open skylight, and bloody bird bits. Yeah that's more than night terrors. Ulgh! Over in the locker room, Theo exposits his werewolf transformation and claims his alpha died before his first full moon at the Alpha Twins' hands. This is obviously a big old lie given canon from 3A states that they killed everyone in their pack, but neither Stiles nor Scott call him out on it. They do side eye each other. Theo: "Scott listen to my pulse. I'm telling you the truth." Stiles: "Alright or you just know how to steady your own heart rate while you're lying your a** off." You tell him Stiles! Since he's not fooling Stiles the Skeptic, he plays memory lane with Scott about a time when they bonded over asthma. Theo leaves to actually go to class (definitely a mutant), but Scott and Stiles stay behind. Stiles: "Don't give me that look." Scott: "We have to give people the benefit of the doubt some times." Stiles: "Not this time, alright? I'm right. There's something off about him. I can feel it." Scott: "Lydia's the psychic, not you." Stiles: "Lydia's not a psychic. She a banshee, okay? There's a difference." Is there? We still don't know what a banshee is in Teen Wolf canon.

Stiles doggedly pursues his theory and meets Scott, Kira, and Malia in the library. It really irks me that Lydia is never included although I know she's tracking down the bird angle. Stiles prefers the criminal angle and breaks into the administration office to copy Theo's transfer papers. He claims Theo's dad's signatures don't match and backs it up with enough technical information that I wonder if Stiles has his own forgery business. Seriously, it's a Neal Caffrey-level explanation of forged signature goofs. The others don't really see it. Kira: "So now Theo is Theo but his parents aren't his parents?" Stiles: "Someone's not someone and when I figure out who that someone really is someone's in big trouble." Bwah! Scott: "But no one's done anything wrong." Good point…if this were anywhere but Beacon Hills, Scott. Stiles agrees. "If Theo's parents are both psychotic killers, then obviously we should not trust him, right?" Malia: "My parents are Peter and the Desert Wolf." Umm yeah, that is a good point and hard to talk around. Stiles doesn't even try. Frustrated that no one takes his instincts seriously, he storms off. Now he knows how Lydia feels most seasons. Sadly he grabs Liam to help stakeout Theo's place. Parrish, on the other hand, plans on staking out Tracy's place after his shift with a little help from the caffeine Lydia insists on bringing him at midnight. I squirm uncomfortably at the thought of Teen Wolf actually making these two canon like it seems they are. Blech, blech, and triple blech. He might as well be a teacher at her school. Something's are off-limits ALWAYS! Please stop this mess now, Jeff. There isn't enough brain bleach in the world for this.

That night Theo heads to the woods, taking a package out of his car. Liam: "We just spent 3 hours watching this dude play videogames in his bedroom. He better be out here covering up a mass murder." Ha! It's the first time I've liked Liam yet…and then they stop the action so Liam can whimper about telling Mason the truth. Moment's over. He can die again. We have better things to do than listen to him emoangst, like follow Theo. You know, the night's mission. Alas, Liam must slow down every forward plot movement. He stutters along before Stiles finally says, "He watched my dad blow up a berserker with a landmine. I think the groundwork's been pretty thoroughly laid for acceptance." Plus it's not like Mason isn't doing research just like season 1 Stiles. (Urgh!) At least someone finally realizes that secrets kill and telling people is better. Maybe this means we'll never play 20 episodes of "Should We Tell" ever again. Liam continues to annoy by yelling a zillion questions when they're trying to be stealthy. Is he an idiot? Don't answer that. He falls into a hole. Stiles would be better off doing this alone, embrace his inner Lydia. Presumably this hole will be important in the future because: 1. Liam fell into it so it has to be a super special hole. 2. Tracy's necklace is buried in the muck. I still don't care. Stiles finds Theo throwing flowers off a bridge and realizes he's memorializing his sister who died there. Trying to leave before Theo sees them, the two make so much noise someone at the high school across town could hear them. Worst tailing of anyone anywhere. No wonder he confronts them. Gibbs smack to them both for being incompetent morons. Seriously.

Theo asks why Stiles and Liam are there and as he approaches, Liam steps in front of Stiles and throat growls. Okay, slight edge for Liam being protective like that…until Theo mentions how super special Liam must be after knowing him for all of 30 seconds. (Begin rant) Liam is the Skye of Teen Wolf, a character jammed so far down my throat I'm choking on him. Everybody and their senile grandma wants to tell me how super awesome he is and that I should like totally find him like super adorable too and think he's the greatest of all time, like the bee's knees and everything. Every single time someone new fawns over him, I want to put an ice pick through my eye to end my misery. Just stop! The more you force this super special, super powerful, Derek-approved snowflake at me, the more I resent him being on my screen. The more you push him as a replacement for Scott and Stiles, the more I want him to die. Enough, Jeff Davis! I am even less interested in your Liam-led Teen Wolf than I was when he was first introduced as God's gift to lacrosse under a beam of light in slow motion, taking off his helmet. I thought it couldn't get any worse, any more cheesy than that. I was dead wrong. Just stop! (End rant) Already annoyed beyond reason by Liam, Stiles next earns a capital M for moron and tells Theo about the signatures. (Headdesk over and over and over again.) What possible good can come from showing your hand so quickly, Stiles? You are not brain dead. Stop acting like it!!! Theo dodges the issue by trying flattery. "You know Stiles, I came back here for Scott but I also came back for you, someone like you. Someone who's willing to walk into the woods in the middle of the night to protect his friends. I don't have anyone like that. Scott does. You all do. I know I'm in the right place. I'm meant to be here. I'm meant to be a part of this pack." Tell me you're not falling for this Stiles, because Liam definitely is.

So is Scott, who waits for them to get back to the Jeep. Neither Stiles nor I want to talk about it, albeit for totally different reasons. Sadly the Jeep won't start again, forcing the conversation. Stiles: "Yes, okay, we followed him out here. What do you want me to say? That I'm a stalker. That I'm crazy, totally paranoid. None of this is new information." Scott: "You're not even going to try to at least give him the benefit of the doubt." In Beacon Hills, NO! You have a target on your back, Scott. It's Stiles' job to protect you from your own naivety. Your job is to protect Stiles from that which goes bump in the night. The plan works. Don't mess with the plan. Stiles: "I give people the benefit. I've given a lot of benefit to a lot of people." Um, maybe not, hon, but that's okay. The pack needs a skeptic. Scott: "Like Derek, Kira, Liam." Stiles: "I was right about Peter." And Matt. Don't forget Matt. You told them all he was a psycho but no one believed you then either. The Jeep still won't start so Stiles continues about Peter. "You know I bet you still think that there's something about him that can be saved." Scott: "Maybe." Oh for the love of St. Jude. Are you kidding me? Scott, I love Peter snark as much as the next girl but even I know there's no redemption plan for him. Give it up. Scott: "Why can't you trust anyone?" Stiles: "Because you trust everyone." Stiles slams his hand into the Jeep and I feel really sorry…for the Jeep. Scott feels sorry for Stiles. He wants to look at Stiles' hand but Stiles says he's fine. Calling on his inner vet, Scott realizes that's not true and he takes Stiles' hand between both of his to siphon off the pain. Awwww. Could you siphon off the extra anxiety too? Stiles' hand is good as new but his relationship with Scott is showing the tiniest of cracks. Nope, not good. I need them to be a solid team. They glance at each other for a moment before the Jeep roars back to life and breaks up the bromance.

Since it's not only teens being completely idiotic tonight, focus shifts back on Tracy. Her dad boards up the skylight, tells her he won't let anything bad happen to her, and…promptly leaves? At this point in the episode, all I can do is shake my head and wonder which one gets taken first. Maybe it'll be Parrish instead, since he's sitting outside her house. He gets distracted by a text from Lydia and never even notices Tracy walking right behind his car. She even stops to pose for him. (Heavy sigh) This is as bad as when Scott and Allison made out during guard duty and didn't see Jackson transform into a snake and bust out of the police vehicle they were holding him in. Maybe Parrish should work on The Following. He's that competent this season so far, but at least he doesn't have Kira's hem haw disease, which has transferred to Liam. He races to school but Mason is done with his excuses. Well until he sees a wolf behind Liam. Cue the running as I remember fondly all the times Scott and Stiles ran through those same school halls at night, fleeing from something evil. Now it's Mason and Liam and I sigh some more. You're killing me Teen Wolf. Finally Liam has enough of the running and roars, causing the other wolf to flee and letting Mason in on his secret. Liam: "There's something I've got to tell you." Mason: "You're a werewolf." And you're officially Danny 2.0. I miss original Danny. I'm also terribly confused because the wolf that chased them is Theo. Huh? First off, I thought werewolves that could go full wolf were extremely rare so I'm calling shenanicanon. Second, what's the point? If Theo wants to kill Liam, why back off so quickly? If he wants to scare him, for what reason? If he's trying to get Liam to tell Mason, why bother? His sole mission seems to be getting into Scott's pack so he can steal Scott's power. How does this help?

No time to ponder logic because Kira and Scott have to make out and discuss his career plans. She asks why Scott didn't tell her that he wanted to be a vet but it seems like a logical step to me. Scott though isn't sure he's smart enough and I feel for him. Awww. Kira, being an awesome girlfriend, reassures him and then promptly causes an electrical shortage as she gets her sexy on. Perhaps he should just get Lydia to make him a study guide. Speaking of Lydia, she's fraternizing in the wee hours of morning with the ever clueless Parrish, who again flirts with her. Parrish: "I'm just glad Tracy's okay." Yeah, completely okay given that she's being injected with serum by the steampunk scientists. She also goes werewolf. Either she's been a werewolf all along and didn't know it, or this isn't her first trip to the lab. Flashbacks show that she messed with the skylight and clawed her locker. New kid becomes new villain, while Stiles adds Theo to his Wall of Weird. Sheriff: "Usually we wait until they do something wrong before we declare them guilty." Stiles: "Well he's guilty of something." Sheriff: "Accusations require proof and proof always trumps instinct. It has to." Aww, this scene bookends Scott with Deaton in the opening. Sheriff tells him to channel his inner Elsa and let it go, but Stiles is a born detective. "I got it, the something different. I know what it is." Sheriff: "Okay?" Stiles: "You're not wearing your wedding ring anymore." Ouch. The life drains from Sheriff's face as I think they're finally going to talk about Stiles' mother. Although they need to, Sheriff turns the conversation back to Theo. "You sure this kid's guilty?" Stiles: "Absolutely." Sheriff: "Then all you've got to do is wait. If they're really guilty, eventually they make a mistake. They always make a mistake." While Stiles is encouraged by this, Theo is less happy. He confronts the man pretending to be his father about the poor forgery. In a fit of terrifying calm, Theo decides the best way to cover the slip up is to take a hammer to the poor man's hand. Yikes!

While I like this episode, I do not like it as much as the rest of the fandom. I couldn't put my finger on it until the third rewatch. Then it hit me. This episode has zero action in it and a whole, whole lot of filler. In fact, it had many of the same problems as season 4 did. The whole middle part of the episode drags and it's only New Girl Tracy's storyline that adds intensity and plot advancement. For the most part it is about kids going to school, albeit supernatural kids with supernatural problems. The only big twist outside of Tracy is that Theo can go full wolf while the only big forward plot movement outside of Tracy is that Mason confirmed what he already pretty much knew. While we do get the big bromance scene with Scott healing Stiles' hand, we also get the first sign of fracturing in their friendship. In fact, the majority of their time together is spent disagreeing. That isn't going to work for me since they are the whole reason I watch this show and I HATE contrived drama. Also, like in season 4, there is an overabundance of Liam and Mason. Why must Liam be in every scene good scene with Scott and Stiles? Why are we getting Stiles and Liam instead of Stiles and Scott anyway? I think the high of the stellar premiere made me see this episode in rose-colored glasses the first time around but it's lost some of its glow for me. I did think Malia's driving scene was cute (and possibly prophetic) and I adore Lydia and Kira's silent conversation in science. As always, the Stilinski family scenes are made of win and I love how Stiles isn't giving up on his instincts even if everyone else thinks he's nuts. In that he's a measure ahead of Lydia, who never could get people to listen to her and therefore sometimes stopped believing in herself. Here's hoping the pack comes around to Stiles' side soon because dude, this is Beacon Hills and trust Stiles is the new motto.

Grade: C+

Episode Awards:

Best Reason to Watch - Tracy's storyline
Best Reason to Fast Forward - Lydia and Parrish
Best Scene - Scott heals Stiles' hand
Best Action - um, was there any action?
Best Reason to Throw Up - tie - either sympathy vomiting with Tracy or hearing yet another person remark on how special Liam is
Best Shock - a teacher asks Lydia a question and she doesn't know the answer
Best Liam Moment - he steps in front of Stiles and growls when Theo comes too close
Worst Liam Moment - emoangsty while tailing Theo and falling in a hole
Smartest Decision Never Actually Used in High School - giving kids a hard test on the second day to weed out those who are too stupid for your class
Most Moronic Move - Stiles tells Theo about the signatures
The "It's Official" Award - Mason is Danny 2.0
New Motto - Forget "Watch Your Pack." This season is all about "Trust Stiles."
Best Detective - Stiles realizes his dad is no longer wearing his wedding ring
Worst Detective - Parrish doesn't realize Tracy is walking right behind his car
Most Incompetent / Least Stealthy - Stiles and Liam tailing Theo while yelling loud enough a human could hear a mile away much less a werewolf
Best Reaction - Lydia to Scott being in an AP science class
Lamest Explanation - GCM thinks Tracy ate her pillow in her sleep
The "Back Up Big Time" Award - Stiles totally invades Sheriff's space when he's grilling him.
The "Slow It Down, Stilinski" Award - 17 speeding tickets before you're 18. Egads! Stiles, you're a menace to the road.
Saddest Moment - Liam and Mason are chased through school by a wolf and I get nostalgic over Stiles and Scott.
Least Interesting Subplot - Liam and the girl who hates him
Dumbest Slow-Mo Shot - Scott walks into school for senior year
Biggest Lying Liar that Lies - tie - Parrish and Liam
Most in Need of a New Job - HistoryDad because teaching Driver's Ed to hallucinating supernaturals is beyond the call of duty. I bet that job at Columbia is looking even better now.
Most Likely to Go Bankrupt - the company that makes Hiring Now signs, given that 5 people run the entire school and we all know Melisa does every single job at the hospital
Biggest Huh? - Why would Theo halfheartedly go after Liam? If he was trying to scare him, it makes no sense. If he was trying to kill him, why back off so quickly?
Biggest Sign of Budget Cuts - instead of watching Theo transform from wolf to human, a tree blocks the way
Best Song-to-Scene - Last Days of Dancing by Maja Francis
Best Quotes -
1. Stiles: "Dad, this kid is a werewolf." Sheriff: "Your best friend is a werewolf. You are dating a werecoyote. I still don't know what Kira's supposed to be. When the flying monkeys come soaring through this station, you will have my undivided attention. Until then, just go to school."
2. Scott: "Why can't you trust anyone?" Stiles: "Because you trust everyone."
3. Liam: "We just spent 3 hours watching this dude play videogames in his bedroom. He better be out here covering up a mass murder."
4. Malia: "How'd I do?" HistoryDad: "There's room for improvement."
5. Mason: "I was attacked by an armor-plated giant wearing a bear skull. It left an impression."
6. Stiles: "Yes, okay, we followed him out here. What do you want me to say? That I'm a stalker. That I'm crazy, totally paranoid. None of this is new information." Scott: "You're not even going to try to at least give him the benefit of the doubt." Stiles: "I give people the benefit. I've given a lot of benefit to a lot of people." Scott: "Like Derek, Kira, Liam." Stiles: "I was right about Peter. You know I bet you still think that there's something about him that can be saved." Scott: "Maybe."
7. Stiles: "I got it, the something different. I know what it is." Sheriff: "Okay?" Stiles: "You're not wearing your wedding ring anymore." Sheriff: "You sure this kid's guilty?" Stiles: "Absolutely." Sheriff: "Then all you have to do is wait. If they're really guilty, eventually they make a mistake. They always make a mistake."

New Motto:  Trust Stiles

Screencaps by, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Tumblr.

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/or creates polls for Teen Wolf, The 100, Grimm, How to Get Away with Murder, The Librarians, The Last Ship, Younger, Rizzoli & Isles, Major Crimes, and others. She also runs the annual Character Cup. She's addicted to Twitter, live tweets a multitude of shows each week, and co-hosts The 100 "Red-Shirted", Sleepy Hollow "Headless" and Teen Wolf "Welcome to Beacon Hills" podcasts for Southgate Media Group. Currently she writes a Last Week in TV column for her blog and SpoilerTV. ~ "I speak TV."
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