Teen Wolf “Maid of Gevaudan” Review (Season 5 Episode 18)

Previously on Teen Wolf . . .
– The writers finally treated us to a Theo-free episode.
– The Desert Wolf reappeared for some really inappropriate mommy/daughter bonding.
– Scott’s pack, after several weeks of episodes centered at Eichen House, mentioned Peter Hale and it had nothing to do with his curious absence from the mental institution. Hysterical laughter at my home ensued.
– Lacrosse became a thing again and the Beast came out to celebrate Coach Finstock’s return. Okay, the Beast probably also came to the game to kill some people too.
– Based on his backstory, Parrish joined the exclusive “I came back from the dead on Teen Wolf – unless you’re Boyd or Erica” club.

Onto this week’s episode – “The Maid of Gevaudan.”

So I’m going to cut to the chase – I did not like this episode. At all. It was definitely great to see Crystal Reed back on the show again, but her return was not enough to salvage what the 41 minutes of nonsensical mess, wonky French accents and really bad wigs.

My biggest problem with the entire premise of this episode is that the writers set out to tell us the story of the Maid of Gevaudan. Here’s the problem – we heard bits and pieces of this story before. You know who else heard it? Lydia.

In the Season 1 Episode “Heart Rate Monitor,” Kate Argent asked Allison to search La Bete du Gevaudan. She was trying to not-so-subtly introduce her young niece to the reality of werewolves in Beacon Hills by exposing her to this story from the late 1700s. Later in that same episode, Allison is at lunch with Lydia reading from an Argent family book. Allison shares that the Beast was “captured and killed by a world renown hunter who claimed that his wife and 4 children were the first to fall to the creature.” According to Allison, the hunters name was Argent. The Beast in the Argent family book looked a lot more like Peter in full blown were-form than it did the Beast currently terrorizing Beacon Hills.

The writers would now have us believe that the individual responsible for capturing and killing the Beast was a female hunter named Marie Jeanne (or Marie John if you go by Gerard’s pronunciation). Marie Jeanne discovers that the Beast is her brother, Sebastian. Apparently, Sebastian became the demon-wolf by drinking from the footprint of a werewolf. Sebastian digs his supernatural powers and the notoriety that comes with killing a bunch of innocent people. He also doubts that Marie Jeanne would ever be able to kill him because they’re siblings.

Sebastian is wrong about his sister, as she works with Henri to prepare a weapon to take down the Beast. They forged a weapon made of Mountain Ash, wolfsbane, and family blood under the light of the full moon. Marie Jeanne kills her brother and his entire existence as a human is erased from history. The name Sebastian Valet has been forgotten for over 150 years. Should Sebastian be remembered, the teenager hosting the Beast will be forgotten forever.

Based on recent press, the writers and show runners clearly expect viewers to overlook the complete retcon of this story because the new version is based on a true story. That is not enough for me to look past this huge change in the story. At a minimum, the writers could have had Lydia mention to Gerard that she remembered Allison telling her that story and that it was completely different from what Allison shared from the book. I suppose that would have been asking too much. Instead, they had the writers not only let Lydia sit there and listen to that completely revised version of history, but they had her do so despite knowing full well that she sensed people in danger. What was so urgent about Gerard’s story that it couldn’t wait until Lydia checked on her friends? Seriously. Gerard did not reveal how Lydia would help take down the Beast, so there was no urgent, compelling reason as to why she would sit there through the remainder of that long, drawn out tale.

Typically, I would welcome the distraction from story time with Gerard, but I did not love the shenanigans at the school either. After Liam recklessly tried to face off with the Beast, Hayden and Stiles managed to get him to safety inside the school. They both notice that Liam is in pain and not healing. Stiles stands there slack jawed and dumbfounded and at no point did it ever dawn on him that there is a veterinarian right there in town who helps them all of the time – well whenever they bother to actually involve Deaton.

Malia calls Braeden to the school and tells her to bring her biggest guns. As I mentioned in my review last week, Braeden should have already been there, considering she’s supposed to be protecting Malia from her mother.

Kira, who was very clearly in the school when the Beast first appeared, for some reason disappeared for the ENTIRE episode.

Scott attempted to step up and help. In doing so, he pretty much revealed himself as a werewolf to a significant portion of the school. The fisticuffs between the Beast and Scott were visually disappointing. It mostly entailed Scott getting tossed around like a rag doll because the show very likely did not have the budget to CGI an on-screen fight. With some help from Liam, Braeden and Malia, the Beast is chased off. Scott catches the Beast’s scent, which allows him to track the bloody shoes to Mason’s car. So there you have it. In a reveal that is as uninspired as the reveal of Meredith as the Benefactor, we learn that Mason is the Beast.

There are many who still speculate that Mason is a red herring. When I watched the episode, that was certainly my first impression. However, there was that awkward moment last week when Corey kissed Mason and flinched because he sensed something. All of the post-show press seems to also confirm that Mason is indeed the Beast. Personally, I no longer care.

Mason is the Beast and Lydia is off to find Jordan to recreate the whole Maid/Henri collaboration to stop the Beast. We had a second Theo-free episode, but that did very little to make it an interesting one. I still feel as though I know very little about what Theo is after and what the Dread Doctors are up to. The role of Deucalion is still a mystery, although I think the references to the Demon Wolf in the flashback were a very intentional nod to his role in whatever happens with the Beast.

I really hope that the writers bring this entire mess to an end by the close of the season. I’m skipping the Mama McCall award this week. Honestly, I wanted to slap myself for wasting 41 minutes of my life on this week’s episode.

Until Next Moon Day!
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Gifs from Giphy.