Teen Wolf Review: “Status Asthmaticus”

photo credit: tvequals.com

photo credit: tvequals.com

Here’s my review of Teen Wolf season five mid-season finale “Status Asthmaticus.” Please note that this isn’t a recap of what happens. I’m assuming that you’ve already seen the episode. There are spoilers in this review.

Divide and Conquer is a pretty effective battle strategy if you can manage to actually accomplish the “divide” part. In most stories, however, it doesn’t usually work on the good guys. Our team of heroes usually realizes what’s going on before the bad guys can take advantage of the split. But as we see in “Status Asthmaticus,” the mid-season finale, Theo’s strategy actually worked to tear the pack apart. And I’m sort of intrigued by this direction. It doesn’t make up for all the flaws of season 5A, but it definitely gives me some hope for 5B. (I am eternally an optimist, just so you all know)

If you stop and think about it, our group of heroes hasn’t worked together since “Strange Frequencies” and even then, Stiles and Theo were doing something else while the rest of the pack failed to keep Hayden from the Dread Doctors. This season opened with Stiles’ worrying about them going their separate ways after high school, so I appreciate the show’s dedication to an overall theme. As things got worse over the season, they certainly fell apart and separated. And as we see in this episode, Theo has manipulated things almost perfectly. Nobody really gets to interact with anyone else, except for Scott and Liam, and we know that’s not exactly a pleasant combo right now. The whole group is splintered.

I won’t lie though. There were still a lot of flaws in this episode. For one thing, it was hella confusing. Time flows strangely in the world of Teen Wolf and no one sleeps at night? IDK. Usually I can brush the time issue off, but it’s really becoming a distraction. And with everything going on right now, Teen Wolf doesn’t need any more distractions. I admit that I struggled to follow each separate storyline and had a difficult time trying to remember where everyone was and what they wanted to do. Despite the split being an interesting conflict to see everyone apart, it still makes the story too crowded. Along with all this, the story again wastes Lydia’s character. The only thing she does is get punched in the face. She never gets to contribute much of anything anymore because people keep locking her up before she can tell about her predictions. And even then, her predictions are never completely right these days. (Remember last season when she showed up at Derek’s loft to scream at him and then he never actually died?)

Of course, the biggest problem is just that, while creating good conflict as they all fall apart, it’s not fun to watch. This episode is super depressing. I don’t even have any good lines to quote. Scott and Stiles and everyone else have reached their lowest point… right as we reach the end of this part of the season. It’s a bad place to end. If the pacing had been better, this should have occurred maybe an episode or two ago so that this episode can give us hope that the gang will get back together. It didn’t have to solve the problem, but it at least shouldn’t have left us in such a desperate place for the next few months! Who wants to tune back in to that?

But the end is what saved this episode for me. Not the part with the Dread Doctors (because at this point, who even cares?) but the part where Theo brings the failed chimeras back to life to become his pack (zombie pack?). That’s just the kind of weird campy plot twist that I always enjoyed from Teen Wolf. This one adds interesting wrinkles to the story. Lots of new complications. How will the chimeras react? Will they accept Theo as their leader? Why didn’t anyone use that green goopy stuff before? And will Hayden be super angry at Liam for not being there when she died? (I would be.) This twist looks to have potential and also finally gives us payoff for introducing all these characters during the season.

So season 5A was weird and “Status Asthmaticus” was not it’s finest moment, but at least we have a spark of something different for 5B. Now that Scott’s hit rock bottom, there’s nowhere to go but up.

All There in the Werewolf Manual

  • As always, Melissa Ponzio is the MVP of this show. She needs to be around all the time.
  • Parrish is a hellhound? I’m……. still not interested. (I suppose that his blank fiery stare when he’s “working” is sort of dog-like?)
  • I like how the jeep continues to be a metaphor for Stiles himself. (Also kudos to Dylan O’Brien for doing a lot of great wordless acting in the jeep scene)
  • Look, Liam’s anger issues have suddenly reappeared! Thanks, Supermoon!
  • Unanswered questions: When did Malia learn to drive safely? Did Mason kick the mountain ash or something when he ran into the library and that’s why Liam was able to leave? Why are the Doctors shouting (French words?) at a picture on the wall? Why was the first chimera more successful than any afterwards? Will we ever find out why crows flew out of Mr. Glowstick Fingernails in the season opener?? (I still want to know.) What about AP Bio? Where’s Brett? And do you think Braeden maybe said “brb” and left Derek chilling in the desert with some cacti?
  • And most importantly: did the Supermoon give Scott super healing so he wouldn’t get brain damage while he was dead for fifteen minutes? #thatsnothowscienceworks
  • Random thought of the episode: it would have been hilarious if Peter barged into the library during the middle of the Scott/Liam/Theo fight and shouted “But I’m the Alphaaaaaaa” while everyone ignored him.
  • Favorite moment of the season? Mine was definitely “His condition is terminal” followed by Scott’s incredulous “What does that mean??” response.

So what did you think? Like it or hate it? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!


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