Saturday, September 24, 2011

TV Series - "Teen Wolf" is a Compelling Watch

It was bound to happen.

They’ve romanticized vampires, and turned them into cool creatures that inhabit many of our television habits. But where are the werewolves? In MTV’s “Teen Wolf”, the lycanthropes take center stage and they are among Beacon Hills High's coterie of beautiful people navigating the California suburb.

One night, high school best friends Scott and Stiles (Tyler Posey and Dylan O’Brien respectively) learn that a couple of girls have been found dead at the woods. Half of their bodies were unrecovered. While they wandered in the shadowy forest, Scott survives an attack by a fierce creature in the night. The succeeding days were revelatory for Scott, a social outcast in school. With his senses heightened, he soon becomes a superior player in their school’s lacrosse team to the consternation of popular boy Jackson (Colton Haynes) who isn’t pleased sharing the limelight with previously nerdy Scott. Moreover, Scott gets the amorous attention of the new girl in class, the beautiful Allison (Crystal Reed).


Trouble starts hounding Scott whenever provoked. His anger “shifts” him, wherefore he loses control of his strength and temper. Is lovely Allison safe around Scott? Enter Derek Hale (Tyler Hoechlin), a guy whose family perished in a mysterious fire. “We’re brothers now,” warned Derek. He further advised Scott against playing for his lacrosse team because he might lose himself and, in the process, expose this lurking community of wolves to predatory hunters. But Scott wouldn’t hear of it. He wants to play and feel like a winner. He wants to stay with Allison. He prefers not being seen as a loser by his peers. Not anymore. Will Scott be able to play and win for his school?

When a school bus driver is attacked, Scott is anxious he could have done it. He'd seen it in his dream. He worries that he might actually hurt Allison who agrees to a group date with him, Lydia (Holland Roden) and Jackson. This takes them to a bowling alley which eventually ends up with Jackson doubly annoyed after losing, yet again, to the suddenly-overachieving Scott. Later that night, the bus driver dies. Scott is angry with Derek whom he believed was responsible for turning him into a werewolf, only to learn that a more powerful wolf, the "alpha" was actually responsible for his turning into one; not Derek. This affords him a "connection" to the fierce creature who has been attacking his community, thus his "visions".

Tyler Posey, who plays Scott, adequately carries the series with his boy-next-door charm. He's a sight for sore eyes, yet exudes vulnerability. And it doesn't hurt that he intermittently ends up half naked. LOL. His character has to content with juvenile angst, not the least of which is the fact that his favorite girl's dad is one of the wolf hunters. Crystal Reed registers well and somehow reminds me of the belles of "Smallville", sunshiny and vibrant.

The series rightfully feels like a high school drama, but with werewolves in it. It’s a compelling watch and the characters are easy to remember. There’s still a bunch of mysteries waiting to be discovered, but with the spirited performances of its young cast, you can’t help but be enamored. The stories move briskly and the characters feel “normal” despite the series’ supernatural veneer. By the end of its third episode, I knew I would be watching more of “Teen Wolf”.

Crystal Reed

Dylan O'Brien is Stiles, Scott's loyal best buddy.

Colton Haynes plays high school's most popular boy Jackson.

Colton Haynes modeled at 15 for A&F in New York then moved to L.A. to pursue acting. He was in fact a werewolf in the TV series "The Gates" before taking on the role of a jock in "Teen Wolf" where he is pitted against the series' protagonist who turns into a werewolf. Seems like he can't shake off his association with lycanthropes.

Colton Haynes

Such a bad bad boy. He actually grew up in a Kansas farm, is half cherokee and half European.

Holland Roden is the series' competitive "queen bitch". Despite the role, Roden is a nice girl who loved "science" in school. She was a full time student where she recently received her degree in women's studies in UCLA.

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