This Fall in Geek-dom: Teen Wolf

Because I’m a writer at heart, I can’t help but notice trends and similarities in TV shows. You remember how the third season of iZombie was about regular people learning zombies exist? It seems something similar is happening this season on Teen Wolf. Not the Michael J. Fox movie. I’m talking about the MTV series that’s currently on its last ten episodes. Fans are sad to see the show go, but at least it’s getting time to wrap up the story in a satisfying way.
That story is about Scott McCall, a teenage werewolf who has achieved “true alpha” status. I know, it sounds like a Boy Scout rank. It means Scott became an alpha werewolf without killing another alpha, which is what you normally need to do. Long story short, it was a cop-out, but it’s worked out for him so far.

After all, Scott’s pack is full of misfits. He has one werewolf with anger management issues, another who used to be an undead were-jaguar, one were-coyote who’s spent most of her life in animal form, and a couple regular humans who have spent time as evil monsters.
The point is there are a ton of interesting stories revolving around these characters. But the people of Beacon Hills (the town in the show) don’t know those stories. All they’re likely to see are the glowing eyes, claws, sharp teeth, and extra-long sideburns. And according to the trailers and the hints dropped in the show, the truth will be coming out soon. And there will be war.
This works on so many levels. Hunters were the big threat when the show started. Then the pack moved on to bigger threats like witches, ninjas, steampunk Frankenstein, and cowboys borrowing plot ideas from Steven Moffat. Now the show is kind of going back to basics with “werewolves versus normal people”, but also introducing the biggest threat yet. Because even if the heroes win, that means humanity will have to lose.
Werewolves work as a great metaphor for puberty and the responsibilities of growing up, but on the other side of the coin we fear them because they’re terrible predators that usually look just like us. Getting past this isn’t as simple as accepting people who are different, like in iZombie. It takes a stronger love, the kind that’s portrayed in Teen Wolf pretty well.


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