Previously on Teen Wolf , the pack took a trip to Mexico in order to get Derek back but they were in for quite a surprise when they ended up with a teenage Derek Hale on their hands.
The episode begins with a flashback to teenage Derek trying to control his wolf powers on the night of a basketball game that happens to coincide with the full moon. Young Peter Hale shows up and that’s really the only way to tell that this is in fact a flashback, since Kate turned him into a young yet indiscernible age. Peter tells Derek off for thinking he could play in the game when he is obviously not in control. Sorry to tell you this bud, but not all that much changes as you get older. Derek might be able to control his powers but there are still a million uncontrollable forces at place in his life.
Lydia, Scott, and Stiles bring young Derek to Deaton to be treated because apparently he’s really cold and sick but Deaton tells them that de-aged werewolves are definitely outside of his skill set. When Derek wakes up the next morning, he immediately freaks out, attacks Deaton and runs off. In this case Derek’s reaction wasn’t completely unwarranted. After all, who wouldn’t freak out after having someone casually drag a scalpel down their forearm? Even if they are a werewolf who heals incredibly fast.
At school, Stiles is divulging his relationship woes to Scott, which mostly include the fact that he is always the little spoon and Malia is a scratcher. Although we’re pretty sure scratching has to be in the “Dating a Werewolf 101” handbook.
After running away from Deaton’s, Derek makes it to the Hale house only to find it destroyed. In his de-aged mind his family is alive and well since the fire hasn’t happened yet. Unfortunately, he gets picked up for trespassing by the beautiful deputy Parish; the poor kid must be so confused. Is he a kid? Seriously, how old is he?
After running his prints at the station, the only match that keeps coming up for Derek Hale is, well, Derek Hale. Scott and Stiles show up to convince Derek to come with them and are surprised when Derek, resident cynic, doesn’t immediately trust them. The mood turns somber when Derek asks after his family; Scott looks into his eyes and just can’t tell him that they pretty much all died in a fire. Instead, he assures him they’re safe yet not there for some reason but they will bring him to them as soon as they get Derek’s memories back. That seems to convince Derek to, if not trust them, then to at least go along with the plan so he can see his family.
Scott feels bad about lying to Derek but Stiles assures him that he actually saved Derek unnecessary pain as this will all eventually blow over and then “Everyone’s happy, except for Derek, who is never happy.” Sounds about right. Because Teen Wolf loves to use Derek Hale as the show’s punching bag and we must be sadistic because we do sort of love watching it.
Malia joins Scott in talking to Peter Hale because isn’t it hilarious that she doesn’t know that she’s actually talking to her father? Earlier in the episode, Stiles said he felt bad about not telling Malia about who her father is. Not because it takes away her agency but because he feels like a bad boyfriend. The writers have almost made it a habit to keep their female characters in the dark about what’s happening to or around them, see: Lydia. Hopefully this doesn’t drag out as long or get treated as a joke like in Lydia’s case.
Meanwhile, at Stiles’ house, he and young Derek are getting along pretty much exactly the same as Stiles does with older Derek, meaning there’s lots of arguing and witty banter. When Scott’s dad comes home, Stiles introduces Derek as his cousin Miguel, a reminder of the lighter stories in season 1. Things get awkward when Derek sees that papa McCall is an FBI agent and questions him about the Hale fire. He isn’t too happy to know that Stiles lied to him and says he’ll only speak to Scott so Stiles leaves to try and find the resident alpha.
Stiles was worried about Derek leaving the house while he’s gone but what he really should’ve been worried about was what could potentially enter it since Kate waltzes right into the McCall house. Older Derek would undoubtedly have his fangs out by now but Kate has de-aged him all the way back to when he trusted her; back when she and Derek knew each other, as Peter says, “In the Biblical sense.” We knew their relationship was manipulative on Kate’s end and also incredibly creepy but seeing them standing next to each other elevates the creep factor to all new levels. The scene really does nothing to dissuade us that Kate has some serious pedophilic tendencies.
Peter, Scott and Malia get to the school to challenge Kate only to be attacked by the same creatures they encountered in Mexico. Peter runs away, because he has pretty much zero concept of protecting people, even if one of those people is his daughter. He ends up in the Hale vault and confronts Kate, while Derek runs after Scott because even in this youthful state he totally wants to be in Scott’s pack.
Peter’s confrontation is pretty ineffectual but Teen Wolf has the absolute best rage moments. In this episode, what takes the cake is Peter screaming “Let’s get angry!” at Kate, urging her to use the emotion to control her power, just like he taught Derek. It makes so much sense now why Derek is so good at controlling his transformation because we’re pretty sure Derek, like the Hulk, is always angry. At least he has good reasons.
In a series of slow motion shots that have become common place during Teen Wolf fight scenes, Kira joins Scott and Malia in the fight, only to be knocked out fairly quickly. Then it’s Derek Hale to the rescue! Once again we are in disbelief that Derek and Peter are in fact related. Peter was supposedly Derek’s mentor except his reaction to danger is always personal survival and running away. Whereas Derek’s is running right into the face of danger and taking all the burden and pain on himself to spare everyone else. That’s what he does this time too, singlehandedly battling the transformer-esque creatures. Then in the middle of the fight he transforms back into older Derek for no discernable reason.
Over in the vault, Kate and Peter are gassed by a faceless yet well-dressed man, who steals 117 million dollars while they’re both down for the count. So, the Hales are millionaires. Or were. This episode, and Peter Hale’s story in particular, are all about control. So even though Derek will also probably be hurt by the heist, it was nice to see Peter not have something work according to his plan for once.
Despite being told through flashbacks, the last episode that centered on Derek Hale was not exactly illuminating about Derek at all. So in terms of Derek-centered episodes, this was definitely a step up. And there weren’t even any female deaths that took place solely to further the characterization of a man. Right on.
image couresy of INFphoto.com