Teen Wolf: The Benefactor review

A virtually flawless episode of MTV's Teen Wolf. Seriously. Better than you could hope for. We have a review with some spoilers for you...

Pop quiz, hot shot. What do two 14 year olds and a mouthless tomahawk-wielding ex-army Wendigo hunter have in common? PENS DOWN. Pass your paper to the student sitting on your left. Now high-five each other, because you all know the answer: The benefactor. This week’s Teen Wolf didn’t ask questions. Instead, it probed the mysteries already unfolding — and I loved it. There was slow-clapping. It was coming from my couch. I make no apologies for this.

This week we met some “featured freshman extras.” Their introduction was so odd, that I actively wondered why were spending time with these people. That question was answered when one of them, Violet, decapitates a werewolf innocently delivering beer to Lydia’s accidental lake house party (more on that shortly). Whyfore the inexplicable were-murder? Because “the benefactor” paid top dollar for her services. Kids today, I tell ya!

This week our loveable Scooby Gang tried their best to explain his new reality to a totally terrified were-Liam. This meant having Kira lure him to a fake party using her clumsy wiles. The only problem with this?  Even though Liam is in agony, he manages to text the entire school about the party. As Kira and Scott do their best to get through to him (with a later assist from a foxy and more bearded than ever Papa Argent), Stiles and Malia bond in the basement as Stiles sweetly talks her into not killing him. It shouldn’t have been romantic. But it totally was.

The striking differences between Liam’s transition and Malia’s was really well done. Plus, the emotional growth that Stiles and Scott showed while dealing with both weres was really moving. Gold stars, y’all. They grow up so fast.

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While all this was happening, Lydia accidentally falls into a Stanley Kubrick film. Seriously, the sound work and the colors? Paging, The Shining. Awesome doesn’t cover it. Damn, this show is pretty.

(*Takes moment to swoon over the show’s beauty*)

As the party rages downstairs, Lydia loses her party-throwing crown by making like Phil Spector meets Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind. She locks herself away in a soundproof room using a vinyl-recorded cipher (provided via some ghost-faces in a wall, of course) to figure out how to save the day. She manages to decode what turns out to be a hit list for every supernatural entity in Beacon Hills.

The show’s balance this week was impeccable. We spent most of our time with our primary protagonists without losing our secondary ensemble members. To wit, both Sheriff Stiles and Peter Hale had the filet mignon of character moments. Sheriff Stiles decides in a subtle but important moment to bring Deputy Baby in on the case. Peter quit moping for just long enough to murder the no-mouthed wendigo killer, showing that his true colors remain unchanged.

The images this week were also sincerely on point. Every scene with Lydia was like a mod horror poem! It could have been viewed as cheesy, but they even pulled off beautiful dancing in the full moon shots with Kira and Scott. Last but not least, there is nothing I don’t love about a newly made teenage werewolf jumping through a glass window. Not one thing.

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5 out of 5