Teen Wolf Review: “Motel California” (Season 3, Episode 6)


Teen Wolf Review: "Motel California" (Season 3, Episode 6)

If you were looking for something creepy to watch on television, tonight’s episode of Teen Wolf fits the bill – if you don’t mind a side of cliché, that is.

The Teen Wolf, er Beacon Hills cross-country team, bus is still on its way to the meet when they end up at the Motel Glen Capri. Right off the bat there is something wrong with this picture. Mostly because it was foreshadowed with a clip from 1977 of an Argent relative killing himself at the same place after being bitten by a werewolf. But there’s also the random motel stop on a school-sanctioned trip that should tip you off that something’s just not right.

It’s no coincidence that the Scooby-squad ended up at this particular motel, of course. Besides the obvious Argent family connection, there’s still someone (or someones) out there sacrificing humans in specific sets of three, and there are three people predicted to die at the hotel. Naturally, when there’s a mystery to be solved, or anything of the supernatural persuasion going on, Scott (Tyler Posey) and his band of overly curious friends arrive at the scene. It’s almost like invisible breadcrumbs lead them directly to these types of situations- that, or the occasional mental moment that Lydia (Holland Roden) is prone to having.

Lately, Lydia’s tendency to have out of body/mind experiences are becoming more frequent. The more of these mental breaks she has, the more helpful she becomes. Let’s face it, besides her extreme intelligence and excellent style, she doesn’t have a lot to offer in these out-of-the-ordinary predicaments. Ever since she was bitten by Peter (Ian Bohen), her status in the group has only elevated. She doesn’t have natural werewolf skills like Scott, sidekick instincts like Stiles (Dylan O’Brien), or training like Allison (Crystal Reed) to contribute, so she needs something else that keeps her from being the damsel-in-distress every week. Her immunity to werewolf bites not only saved her life, but makes her one of the most compelling characters to watch on Teen Wolf because more so than anyone else on the show, she’s original.

Tonight Lydia finds herself able to relive a select few of the suicides – no picture, just sound – after finding out about the motel’s unusual notoriety. Her reaction to this ominous info was to flee, which is probably the most sane thing we’ve ever seen happen on Teen Wolf.  When things get super creepy, it’s a good rule of thumb to extract yourself from the scenario. Unfortunately, her gut instinct was blocked by Allison’s irrational desire to stay put. It isn’t until Lydia has a full-on episode, and they consult Stiles, that Allison finally gets on the bandwagon.

Why is it that common sense is so uncommon on this show? Another great question, how is it that no one managed to see or hear Boyd (Sinqua Walls) breaking the vending machine or breaking into the office and leaving with the vault in tow? Or Isaac (Daniel Sharman) having a very loud, one-sided conversation before cowering under the bed? Was it just me, or did the motel not look particularly large or well-constructed to the point of being sound proof?

I have to say, watching the four hotel guests of the werewolf variety becoming the weakest link was an experience I could have lived without. Even though it’s an interesting concept to see the strongest lose face for a moment, it seemed super contrived and unoriginal. The moment the bus stopped, the events were completely predictable – especially with the earlier flashback. Why give away so much, so early on? The episode was still super creepy with all the low lighting, camera angles, and quick cut away style of editing, but it would have been nice if we couldn’t connect the dots so easily.

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