MTV // 2012 // 516 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge Gordon Sullivan // June 3rd, 2013
Trust the instinct.
I missed out on the glory days of MTV, when it was a constant rotation of music videos. Instated, I grew up during it's slow decline into reality programming and cultural irrelevance. If you'd have told me that in my 30s MTV would air a show based on the Michael J. Fox film Teen Wolf and, more importantly, it would be pretty good, I'd have laughed most heartily. But here we are.
The Second Season picks up where the first left off, hitting the ground running for 12 episodes of action and romance. Teen werewolf Scott McCall (Tyler Posey, Collateral Damage) is in a bit of a pickle. His girlfriend (Crystal Reed, Skyline), who happens to be the daughter of a pack of werewolves, can't see him anymore; there's a new alpha in town (Tyler Hoechlin, Road to Perdition); some of his fellow high-schoolers are making the change to werewolf; and there may be a new creature lurking about as the hunters breathe down everyone's neck.
In my review of Season One, I highlighted the fact that the show didn't go for the usual "monster of the week" format, but rather played like one long feature film. Wisely, the producers chose to continue that format. The first season was like a deck-clearing, getting all the show's mythology out of the way so that it could rev up and deliver 12 episodes of action and drama...and, let's face it, lots of shirtless guys. Without all necessary the world-building, Season Two offers great action with plenty of twists and turns along the way. All of the first season issues are effortlessly juggled in the first two episodes, after which more problems are thrown into the mix, building on the strengths of what came before. The best part is that these episodes blend together perfectly for great television marathoning.
MTV and MGM once again show a lot of loving care in packing their seasons. Spreading these 12 episodes over three discs give the transfers plenty of room to breathe. The standard def 1.78:1 anamorphic transfers handle blacks quite easily, as frequent night shots include lots of detail without problematic compression problems. Colors are well saturated, and the show's clean contemporary look is consistent throughout. The Dolby 5.1 Surround audio handles the show's dialogue, the use of music is well-balanced, and he rear speakers get a regular workout courtesy of the action scenes. Unfortunately, Teen Wolf is only available on DVD, which is disappointing for a sharp-looking show that would thrive in HD and whose music would benefit from lossless audio.
On the plus side, bonus features are as plentiful here as they were with the first season. We get three episode commentaries ("Omega," "Raving," "Battlefield"), deleted/extended/alternate scenes, a panel discussion from the season premiere at the Paley Center, a featurette introducing us to new cast members, and a set of different "reels" -- CGI showcase, bloopers, alternate takes from funnyman Stiles, and a montage of the dudes all shirtless and six-packy.
The strength of Teen Wolf remains its execution, as there's very little original about the approach or mythology. Werewolves are still pretty much like you remember them, and the hunters aren't all that different from various other genre shows (Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries). But for a teen-oriented supernatural show about a guy who turns into a hairy beast, it's scratches that saccharine itch perfectly.
Still a guilty pleasure, and still Not Guilty.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.78:1 Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English)
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (French)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 516 Minutes
Release Year: 2012
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
* Deleted/Extended Scenes
* Gag Reel