With next week’s episode serving as the season one finale for Wolf Pack, episode 6 ‘After Party’ and episode 7 ‘Lion’s Breath’ decided to provide answers to certain questions.
I will be very surprised if Paramount Plus decides to renew Wolf Pack for a second season. It has nothing going for it. Our main cast is bland. The storytelling and pacing are riddled with issues. The CGI is laughably bad. And the overall budget seems to be nonexistent. The show’s biggest selling point was casting the iconic Sarah Michelle Gellar. But even she can’t elevate such material.
Oh well, let’s talk about the two episodes.
With the teens encountering a werewolf during a pool get-together in the previous installment, ‘After Party’ opened with them trying to make sense of what they just saw. Due to all of them being high, it was understandable that they were confused about whether the beast they encountered was actually something supernatural or if it was some kind of wild bear. The fact that no one called the cops ASAP or that such a big house didn’t have surveillance cameras made no sense to me. But then again, this wouldn’t be the first time Wolf Pack had events play out in a certain manner because the story demanded it.
One of my biggest issues with Wolf Pack is how certain characters are introduced. Austin and Cyrus kind of dropped into the story out of nowhere and the audience was told they were an important part of the narrative. ‘After Party’ had yet another new character, Baron, enter the plot, and I couldn’t help but roll my eyes. There was no buildup to his inclusion, especially after how much ‘Lion’s Breath’ was about him. I don’t even think I saw Baron interact with the co-leads in any of the previous episodes or saw him show up in the background somewhere. But yeah, here he was. And we’re just supposed to go along with it.
For those wondering about Kristin’s motives, ‘After Party’ made it clear that she knew a whole lot about werewolves. The way she decided to actually talk to the werewolf terrorizing the teens at the pool party did take me by surprise. She wanted to help it turn back to “normal”, while on the other hand, Garrett decided to shoot it. Garrett’s not playing around when it comes to protecting his kids!
We got to learn a bit more about what happened during the fire that occurred 17 years ago, the same fire that resulted in the deaths of a bunch of other firefighters, including Cyrus’ father. The sole survivor from that group was played by Gideon Emery (I don’t remember his character’s actual name, and I don’t feel like looking it up while writing this).
Luna, Harlan, Blake, and Everett questioned the survivor, and he basically told them that, yes, the firefighters were attacked by a werewolf as they tried to escape from the burning forest. Even though Emery did a good job of portraying a man who had been running from his past (he was too much of a coward to stay behind and help the remaining firefighters fight the beast), the entire scene with him and the teens was a bit too much of “telling instead of showing” for my liking. But what’s new, right? Not an episode of Wolf Pack goes by without it reminding you of how the entire show has been operating on a shoestring budget.
In this day and age, if a studio isn’t going to provide a show with the required budget to tell a story properly, especially a supernatural show like Wolf Pack, I think it’s better if said show didn’t get greenlit at all. But then again, even if Wolf Pack was given a bigger budget pool to dive into, the issues with the storytelling would have remained. So, I guess TPTB over at Paramount Plus made the right decision? Hmmm.
Anyway, ‘After Party’ also had a scene between Blake and Phoebe where Blake finally explained why she wasn’t into owning a cell phone. I don’t know what I was expecting, but it certainly wasn’t what the writers gave me. It turns out Blake’s mom was caught cheating on her husband via text messages. The aftermath of the ensuing domestic dispute between her parents made Blake never want to own a cell phone ever again. Like, please, make it make sense!
Compared to ‘After Party’, I enjoyed ‘Lion’s Breath’ a bit more. Episode 7 decided to fill in the gaps when it came to what happened during that eventful night 17 years ago. After the firefighters attacked the werewolf, they were hunted down by the beast’s mate. And that mate was revealed to be… drumroll… Kristin.
So, kudos to those of you who had been side-eyeing Kristin ever since she appeared onscreen. She didn’t take kindly to her mate being attacked in such a manner. And you know what? I get it.
As for the action sequence, the creative team decided to make do with the budgetary constraints by having the firefighters be attacked by a humanoid she-wolf (think the werewolves from Teen Wolf but naked) instead of the completely CGI-rendered beast running around town in the present timeline.
There was a scene after the bloody sequence where a young Kristin decided to lie down on the ground as the rain fell on top of her. That moment served as a nice callback to when an older Kristin decided to lay down on the ground while searching for a missing teen. I really liked that particular creative choice.
Kristin’s been showing a lot of interest in Luna and Harlan. So, I guess it’s clear that the twins are supposed to be her kids? She also seems to be interested in Garrett. I do think she’s impressed (and kind of grateful) by how he looked after the twins and was ready to keep doing his best to keep protecting them. Does Kristin want to turn Garrett into a werewolf and then force him to be her mate? She better not do anything to my husband!
Coming back to Baron, who appeared out of nowhere but is very important for some reason, it’s revealed that he’s the one killing people every night and specifically targeting those who he thought posed a threat to his pack. His next target was going to be Austin. ‘Lion’s Breath’ dealt with our co-leads wanting to use Austin as bait and help Baron remember his name so he could turn human again.
Even though I liked the werewolf lore featured in Wolf Pack, I do have to say that I found Everett’s plan to be a bit confusing. Apparently, they needed to “kill” the werewolf, have Baron transform back into his human form, and then revive him so he would remain that way. Or at least, that’s what I understood when he explained his plan to Harlan.
I don’t know about you, but I feel the lore keeps changing for one reason or another. Like, remember how it was established that the big bad werewolf wouldn’t kill the co-leads because it thought of them as a part of its pack? Well, apparently, that doesn’t matter anymore because the werewolf can attack the co-leads if it didn’t like them or consider them a threat to itself. It was even prepared to make more werewolves if needed.
I understand lore being changed as the story progresses and our characters learn more about what’s happening around them. But having stuff change after only an episode or two because the plot demanded it isn’t a good storytelling strategy, in my opinion.
So, yeah, the all-important werewolf Baron fell for Everett’s plan and transformed into his human form after being locked in a freezer. However, before he could be brought back to life, Austin decided to come running and stab Baron’s heart with a silver-coated dagger.
While that particular moment took me by surprise (even though I knew what Austin was likely going to do), the fact remains that I don’t care about Baron’s fate in the finale because I don’t know him. He literally didn’t exist for me two episodes ago.
With Baron being a “sibling” to our co-leads and Kristin wanting to help him turn back, I’m looking forward to seeing how they all will react to Baron’s death (if he’s even dead). Also, I’m not the only one who thinks there’s still more than one shady werewolf out there, right?
Some other thoughts and questions:
- Killing Phoebe off at the end of ‘After Party’ made no sense to me. That’s why I think she might still be alive due to Everett seeing her in one of his visions. She gave him quite a lot of information about what the werewolf was going to do next. And having an actual ghost offer such an info dump would be poor storytelling (more so than what’s usual for Wolf Pack).
- Harlan punching Garrett in the face had me shooketh. Leave him alone, you ungrateful werewolf teens! As I have mentioned in my past reviews, Garrett did the right thing by creating silver bullets.
- Everett’s parents continue to be the worst. I held out some hope for his father, but yeah, I can see why he doesn’t step in and ask his wife to stop attacking Everett.
- I like the height difference between Luna and Austin, even though I’m not invested in their so-called relationship one bit.
- The amount of unnecessary nudity in Wolf Pack serves as another example of how showing skin can only do so much to distract from poorly-written stories.
What did you think of ‘After Party’ and ‘Lion’s Breath’? Are you looking forward to the season one finale of Wolf Pack?
Let us know.
Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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