Teen Wolf: Season 2 DVD Review
Written by Various
Directed by Various
2012, Region 1 NTSC, 516 Minutes, Not Rated
Tyler Posey as Scott McCall
Crystal Reed as Allison Argent
Dylan O'Brien as Stiles
Tyler Hoechlin as Derek Hale
Holland Roden as Lydia Martin
Colton Haynes as Jackson
I went about 28 years before seeing the classic (?) film Teen Wolf, starring Michael J. Fox as a basketball-playing werewolf. Decades after the movie hit theaters, MTV picked up the idea and turned it into an angst-filled teenage drama. Instead of basketball, Scott McCall (Tyler Posey) plays lacrosse because I guess that's what kids are into these days. His family doesn't know about his condition. He's hiding out from a group of people who want to kill him, and there's a new beastie lurking in the area. To make matters more complicated, he's secretly dating Allison Argent (Crystal Reed), the daughter of the head monster hunter in town. It's like Romeo and Juliet but with werewolves.
What surprised me about Teen Wolf was how serialized it was. This is not a “Freak of the Week” type show. Instead, it's an expanding narrative that you really need to have watched from the beginning to really appreciate. I had a tough time jumping into the second season without having seen the previous episodes. It took me a bit to get up to speed but fortunately I live in a world with Wikipedia, so I was able to catch up. While the storyline continues from episode to episode, there doesn't seem to be a lot happening. Scott and his hetero life-mate Stiles (Dylan O'Brien) struggle to figure out what's going on with the mystery monster that's popped up in town while dodging the hunters, making kissy faces at Allison, and being normal teenagers. Occasionally, a werewolf gang will show up to make their presence known. Aside from that, this season feels like one long plot thread that's awkwardly cut into episodes.
Admittedly, I'm not the primary target audience for Teen Wolf. I can't tell you the last time I actually watched anything that was on MTV. That being said, I know that they've had some good programming in the past. This strives for some lowest common denominator humor. There's a scene where Scott's mom is suspicious of her son's recent activities and decides to clean his room as a cover for doing some hardcore snooping. Of course, being that he's a teenager, she finds a box of condoms and is almost cartoonishly surprised. If her eyes literally popped out of her head, it wouldn't have been that out of place.
The character of Stiles is usually the one bringing in this kind of humor. He's a regular human with no supernatural abilities and he's kind of an idiot, so he ends up being the butt of many jokes. This is the type of character that you've seen in various sitcoms over the years. Think Joey from Friends but in high school and you've got the right idea.
The mythology behind Teen Wolf is very well thought out and actually brings a lot to the genre. There are different types of werewolves. Each is broken up into a type of class. There's an Alpha, who heads up a local pack and is the most powerful of the bunch. The rest of the wolves in the area are Betas, who are meant to follow the Alpha. On the other end of the spectrum are Omegas, who are loners and don't belong to a pack. It's something that makes total sense and I was glad to see it in the show.
Additionally, the werewolves aren't as traditional as we've seen in other movies and TV shows. They're actually shape shifters. They can just change into the one thing, but what that is has to do with the kind of person they are when they're bitten / scratched. The storyline throughout this season has to do with a monster that looks more reptilian than canine. Apparently this person was attacked by a werewolf but it didn't have the same effect as what happened to Scott. In some ways, it's like a dark version of the main character.
Instead of just being a curse that afflicts Scott whenever the moon is full, he can tap into his werewolf powers at will. He can't fully transform during the rest of the month, but he can grow a wicked pair of side burns and get some long fingernails. Wow. When you say it like that, it sounds really lame. Scott also has a superior sense of smell that he uses to sniff his fellow lacrosse players to see if any of them are also werewolves. Yup. That happened.
The major issue I have with Teen Wolf is the fight scenes. They look incredibly staged, like the version that made it into the show was a rehearsal instead of the final version. They're slow too, like the actors are pulling their punches and taking their time getting to the next step. This is disappointing when a big battle is set up only to have a lackluster fight.
Teen Wolf has its flaws, but fans of the genre can find a lot to take away from it. Teenage girls will also love the show as it's mostly shirtless dudes running around the woods.
Video and Audio:
This DVD set presents all 12 episodes of the second season of Teen Wolf in Dolby Digital 5.1. The audio is clear without any issues. Similarly, the picture is crisp and clean.
Fans of Teen Wolf will be pleased with the array of features included in the second season DVD set. There are commentary tracks on three of the twelve episodes and footage from Paleyfest 2012.
Additionally, there are alternate, deleted, and extended scenes, a gag reel, and alternate takes of Stiles. The most interesting – and definitely unique – feature is the Shirtless Montage 2.0. Say what you will about it, but 20th Century Fox knows how to cater to their audience.