Teen Wolf 2-08: “Raving”

After receiving a mysterious text message, Jackson—still behaving oddly, though not anywhere approaching the oddness of last episode’s madcap “swallowing live snakes, which then slither out his eyeballs” shenanigans—heads to a warehouse and stands in line to buy a ticket for the upcoming rave. Also in line are Matt, who’s getting tickets for his date with Allison, and Scott, who’s shadowing Jackson in hopes of preventing him from carrying out his next murder. Jackson gets weird with the young woman selling the tickets (he doesn’t say a word, just stares at her ominously with dead eyes), which creeps her out so badly she shuts down the makeshift ticket office and beats a hasty retreat.

It’s probably worth noting that at no point in this episode is Jackson really himself—even when he’s not in the kanima form, he’s still being controlled by the unidentified third party.

Stiles plies Sheriff Stilinski for details about Beacon Hills’ most recent rash of unsolved murders. “I’m not sharing confidential police work with a teenager,” his dad snaps, scant seconds before he shares confidential police work with a teenager. With the exception of Isaac’s dad, all the victims—the mechanic and the young couple in the trailer in the woods—were graduates of Beacon Hills High School Class of 2006. What’s more, Isaac’s older brother, who died in combat, was also a member of that graduating class. The only other meaningful link Stiles and his dad can find between the victims is that they all took Mr. Harris’s chemistry class. Which… I don’t know, can you even graduate from high school without taking a chemistry class? (If the answer to that is yes, by the way, I’m going to shed a quiet tear for the state of today’s public school system.) And would the high school really have more than one chemistry teacher? Can you see where I’m going with this? Anyway, Stilinski bumps Mr. Harris right up to the top of his suspect list.

In one of those dreary Scott-Allison scenes that lasts approximately a million years, the lovebirds meet in secret in the chemistry classroom. Creeped out by Victoria Argent’s veiled threats to his manhood last episode, Scott suggests seeing other people in public to throw their folks off their trail. Allison confesses that she kinda sorta somehow already agreed to go on a date with Matt. What she doesn’t mention is that she’s also now secretly conspiring with her father and grandfather to trap Jackson. Oh, Allison. Yet again, you disappoint me. I understand how you’d feel torn in your loyalties, but here’s the deal: You can help out your werewolf-hunting dad, or you can help out your secret werewolf boyfriend—either would be a valid course of action—but you can’t help both at once without seeming tremendously spineless and kind of shady.

Unbeknownst to Scott and Allison, Victoria Argent spies on them. She seethes with rage at their secret canoodling.

After being briefed on the situation with Jackson and his still-unknown controller, Dr. Deaton gives Scott a syringe filled with enough Ketamine to incapacitate the kanima. He also gives Stiles a sack of powdered mountain ash, which he can use to make a barrier to trap both Jackson and his controller. The mountain ash, per Deaton, needs the Power of Belief™ to trigger its efficacy. In other words, Stiles doesn’t just need to form a barrier with the ash—he needs to believe with his whole heart that the barrier can contain evildoers. Eh, sure, why not?

Predicting that Jackson will show up at the rave to complete whatever lethal mission led him to purchase a ticket in the first place, the Argents and their assembled underlings plan a raid. For this mission, Allison is fully allied with Team Argent. Since she’ll already be at the rave with Matt, she’ll send her dad a signal at the best moment to take Jackson down. After Allison leaves the room, Gerard makes it clear to everyone that the plan is to kill Jackson, not capture him. To their credit, the underlings all refrain from rolling their eyes and saying, “Well, duh.”

A dejected Sheriff Stilinski returns home and tells his son that, thanks to Stiles’s recent unlawful hijinks, he’s been forced to surrender his badge and gun and take an indefinite leave of absence. Stunned and upset, Stiles asks his dad why he isn’t visibly angry with him. Displaying a heretofore untapped master-class ability at laying guilt trips, Stilinksi replies, “Maybe I just don’t want to feel any worse than I already do by having to yell at my son.” Predictably, Stiles feels terrible about this.

It’s the night of the rave! Cue the crazy lights and skimpily-dressed teens waving glow sticks around wildly! Scott and Stiles are at the warehouse, armed with mountain ash and Ketamine, ready to apprehend Jackson. On Derek’s orders, Erica and Isaac join their cause. Allison, who’s there on her date with Matt, takes Scott aside and finally—finally!—tells him she’s helping her father with his plan to capture Jackson. Scott is kind of horrified that this is the first he’s hearing of this. As well he should be.

As the Argents and their heavily-armed henchmen arrive en masse, Stiles spreads mountain ash around the perimeter of the warehouse. When he runs out of ash before the barrier is complete, he remembers what Deaton told him about the Power of Belief™, then closes his eyes and magically comes up with enough ash to finish the job.

Derek and Boyd run into the gaggle of werewolf hunters outside the club. Boyd! Good to see you, buddy! I sort of forgot you were even still on this show!

On Chris’s command, the werewolf hunters whip out the heavy artillery and start firing hundreds of rounds of wolfsbane-laced bullets at Derek and Boyd. None of this helps anyone come any closer to apprehending Jackson, but it seems to make them happy. Derek and Boyd take on the hunters in an acrobatic, no-holds-barred back-alley brawl which, oddly, reminds me of nothing so much as a heavily-armed homage to Michael Jackson’s Beat It video. That’s not meant as any kind of slight. I love Beat It.

Inside the warehouse, Jackson approaches his target: the young woman who sold him the rave ticket. Armed with the Ketamine syringe, Isaac and Erica slink up behind him. Because Teen Wolf is a show that clearly knows the value of fanservice, they both start to nuzzle his neck and grind up against him on the dance floor. We’re treated to a goodly bit of Jackson-Erica-Isaac three-way action, and it is very, very nice.

Then Jackson ruins this nice moment by attacking Erica and Isaac. Before Jackson can kill the young rave promoter, Isaac sticks him with the syringe and knocks him out. They haul him off to some kind of bare concrete room—at first I thought they went back to Derek’s lair, but plotwise it makes more sense to assume it’s another part of the warehouse—where they’re joined by Stiles. Jackson sort of casually reaches out and grabs Isaac’s arm and breaks it while he’s still unconscious. He gradually comes around enough to answer Stiles’s questions.

Jackson’s controller, communicating via Jackson’s body, tells his captors that everyone he’s killed thus far has been a murderer. When Stiles asks who his victims murdered, the controller enigmatically replies, “Me.” Then Jackson evolves into his kanima form and smashes his way out of the room. He hunts down the rave promoter and rips her throat out.

Outside the warehouse, a crazed Victoria Argent runs down Scott in her car. She hauls Scott, injured and dazed, off to a small room containing a wolfsbane-filled vaporizer. As Scott returns to consciousness, she informs him of her plan to suffocate him with the wolfsbane and make it look like an asthma attack. Helpless and dying, Scott howls piteously.

Derek hears Scott’s howl and rushes to his rescue. When Victoria attacks him, Derek fends her off, then whisks Scott away to Dr. Deaton’s office for treatment. Outside the warehouse, Victoria Argent stumbles up to Chris and collapses in his arms. Her bloody shoulder is covered with Derek’s teeth marks.

Well, that was messy! Not in a bad way, though; despite some sloppiness, everything was agreeably chaotic and fun, what with the way multiple parties—Scott and Stiles, the Argents, Derek’s pack, Jackson—all converged on the rave at once. Only four episodes left in the season.


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