“Teen Wolf”: It’s Derek Hale and He’s All “Alpha, Please.”

Welcome back to Beacon Hills, a world of infinite shirtlessness and perpetual danger! If you thought Teen Wolf would open with a little exposition and perhaps a naked man or two swimming and splashing around in a woodland pond beneath the light of a waning moon, think again. You had nine months to catch your breath. You and Stiles could have had a baby by now. It’s go time, baby!


Isaac Lahey is in trouble. Big trouble. Super big trouble. He’s been beaten down by something — or two identical somethings! — and it looks like it might be the end of our most tortured werecub’s little puppy life. But no! Out of the shadows like some kind of Batman comes a speeding motorcycle and a hero in full leather. You think it’s Derek, probably. Or maybe Scott. But no. It’s the Batwoman, and she is a full badass. She scoops up Isaac onto her bike and tells him to hold on no matter what. She zooms through some streets and down some alleys and drives up onto walls and pulls some wheelies and slides around, but she’s not match for the two identical somethings that are chasing her. They’re Alphas, by the way. Identical Alpha twins, and when they corner Isaac and Batwoman in a warehouse, they morph their bodies together to form a gigantic fucking wolf beast. Like if the Wonder Twins were terrorists. Luckily, Batwoman has a gun that shoots lightning and that immobilizes them long enough for an escape.


Scott is getting a tattoo because one time Tyler Posey got a tattoo without MTV’s permission and half his job is being shirtless and it’s not like Teen Wolf’s got a CGI budget to spare and so now Scott is getting a tattoo. It’s the HRC marriage equality symbol, which is nice. Stiles isn’t feeling the body ink, not only because he thinks the design is dumb, but also because pain and blood squick him pretty hard. As soon as the tattoo needle machine starts buzzing, he just passes right the hell out.


Scott’s tattoo doesn’t stick because he’s a werewolf and so his body heals the needle marks in a jiffy. Stiles goes, “Thank God. That was about the lamest tattoo I’ve ever seen.” (Also, though, you know Stiles has got a whole drawer full of removable Adventure Time tattoos at home. He totally fancies himself a Jake the Human.)

Meanwhile, Allison or Lydia are on their way to Expositionville. First stop: Jackson Whittemore. Where is he? “He moved to Cardiff to join an elite team of supernaturally gifted/extradimensionally handsome alien fighters helmed by an omnisexual demigod named Captain Jack.” Lydia’s doing OK. Probably she’s going to have to date those two Alpha twins to compensate for the total manness that was Jackson, but she’s hanging in there. Allison, not so much. It’s not that her mother stabbed her own self in her own chest with a kitchen knife a couple of months ago, or that she watched her grandpa puke up werewolf tar until he died in an mangled huff of oldness. What’s wrong with Allison is that she misses Scott.


So imagine how surprised she is when Scott and Stiles pull up beside her and Lydia at a stoplight in the middle of the Forbidden Forest. A six. She’s surprised like a six. What would surprise her a ten? Maybe a wild deer flinging itself through Lydia’s windshield in a suicidal fit. Which is exactly what happens. Allison screams, Scott screams, Stiles faces, and Lydia is like, “This shit again? I swear to God.”


Isaac and Batwoman arrive at the one hospital in the greater Beacon Hills area. It’s a thriving medical facility considering the fact that Nurse Melissa McCall is the only employee. First she assesses Batwoman who tells her to deal with Isaac and also to give the Alpha a call if she doesn’t mind. Melissa’s face says that she’d like nothing more than to ring up Derek Hale, but unfortunately she doesn’t have his phone number because she couldn’t find a way to ask Scott without making it weird. She scoots off to tend to the gaping claw wounds on Isaac’s torso and Batwoman whispers, “Not Derek Hale — McCall!”


First day of school! New year, new you! Scott is doing one-armed pull-ups and reading iconic ironic literature. You know, Call of the Wild, White Fang. Stuff like that. He’s also learning a new word of the day everyday. Today’s word: ephemeral. Lydia has, of course, spent New School’s Eve in the arms of a man whose body was chiseled by God himself. Allison continues to feel super bummed out to be an Argent. And Sheriff Stilinski has to physically pull Stiles away from his laptop because he’s fallen down the “sterek fanfic rec” tag on the Tumblrs.


Beacon Hills High has: one (1) new principal who does not approve of medieval weaponry as office decor; one (1) new bright-eyed literature teacher who does not approve of Scott McCall’s attendance record; two (2) new brothers who are twins who are shredded who catch Lydia’s eye like cat with a shoestring; three (3) missing students, two of whom are legit Missing Persons and one of whom is just hacked-and-slashed in the hospital. It’s Derek Hale’s pack, those missing guys.


Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed this fine morning is Scott McCall, who plans to be model student, friend, and son this year. Too bad he gets a call from his mom five minutes into first period asking him to skive off the rest of his classes and come deal with the current supernatural catastrophe at the hospital. The problem is that Isaac’s wounds have healed up and he’s headed into surgery.


Also, the problem is that nobody in the OR ever looks at the floor; if they did they’d see that pair of shoeless beast feet down there.


Once the surgeon realizes Isaac is all fixed by magic, he tells Beast Feet to get him out of there, so Beast Feet wheels him down to the elevator, probably to drop him down the shaft. Scott arrives in the nick of time — he was running a little late because of helping a poor old blind guy find his way — and leaps into the elevator with Beast Feet and a very unconscious Isaac. Beast Feet is an Alpha and they wrassle for a minute or two and just when it looks like Scott’s good and whipped, the elevator door opens. A leather-clad arm appears. Some stubble. A surly smirk. It’s Derek Hale and he’s all, “Alpha, please.”


Things are even more Apocalyps-y at school. Lydia confesses to Stiles that after that deer offed itself in her windshield last night, her dog Prada bit her. It’s like, what’s with all the murder-y animals in Beacon Hills all of a sudden. And speaking of MURDER, the biggest murder of crows you have ever seen in your life — like enough crows to freak out even Alfred Hitchcock — swirl around in the sky outside the school and then dive bomb Ms. Blake’s literature class. It’s all feathers and beaks and blood and shrieking kids and glorious Syfy-caliber green screen action.


After the attack, Sheriff Stilinski shows up to investigate. He asks Chris Argent, who is there picking feathers out of Allison’s hair, if he has any clues about what the hell with Beacon Hills wildlife lately. Chris is like, “Who? Me? Why would I know anything about that?” Uh, because in season one when that invisible mountain lion got loose in the school parking lot, you pulled out a missile launcher and shot it dead while it darted between cars mauling people to death. Also, “I overheard Stiles say you’re a hunter?” Chris says no, he’s not. Not anymore.


Out in the hallway, a female Alpha shows up to finish off Isaac, but gets creeped out when she sees those twins, so she marks Lydia and Allison with some arcane symbol by grabbing both of their arms so hard, and bounces. I wish that was the symbol of Sappho. I wish those two would just make out already.


Scott and Derek and Stiles meet-up at the Old Hale place where Derek has decided to keep Isaac for the time being, due to all the lupine alchemy ingredients that are scattered willy-nilly in the ashes of his youth. Scott tells Derek he wants a tattoo. As a reward. See, because while Boyd and Erica were out getting kidnapped and Isaac was out getting mauled to death and Batwoman was out saving the day just because she’s a BAMF and Derek was risking his abs and delts every day to track down this pack of Alpha psychos, Scott was working so goddamn hard not to … text Allison. “Even when I really wanted to.”

Maybe holding a werewolf’s arm under a blowtorch really does seal a tattoo onto its body, or maybe that little yarn Scott just wove made Derek want to torture him. Whichever one it is, Stiles gives Derek a wink and Scott a neck massage while Derek shoots an open flame at Scott. It works, though. Tyler Posey’s same-sex marriage pledge is here to stay. Stiles is so overwhelmed with thoughts of gay equality that he is overcome with the vapors and faints again.



On the way out, Scott notices that Derek has painted over his door. He scrapes off all the paint for no reason at all, like he’s having some kind of remodeling fit, and discovers the sign that the Alpha Pack left on Derek’s door in the season finale. Derek explains that while Scott was pining away for Allison all summer, he and his pack were trying to keep the world from getting eaten up by some lunatics.

Back in the Beacon Hills High locker room — hiiiii, locker room! — Batwoman shows up and so does the Alpha pack. She twirls a broomstick. They kick her in the face. Among the Alphas is that poor old blind man Scott helped at the hospital. His name is Deucalion. He’s the Alpha Alpha.


So guys, what did you think of the first episode of Teen Wolf season 3. Off to a banging start I think!

Heather Hogan is a freelance writer/editor from Atlanta.