Teen Wolf “Apotheosis” Season 5 Finale Review (Season 5 Episode 20)

This season on Teen Wolf . . .

A mysterious smug-faced stranger named Theo came to town and brought with him, a crew of devoted Steampunk cosplayers with robotic voices. The cosplayers, also known as the Dread Doctors, went around town tinkering with unwitting teenagers and turned them into hybrid supernatural creatures known as chimeras. The Dread Doctors were in search for the perfect chimera who would transform into the Beast. Heading into the finale, I still can’t say with any certainty what the Dread Doctors ultimate goal was. Much to my disappointment, our sweet, precious, innocent summer child Mason was revealed to be the perfect chimera, i.e., the Beast of Beacon Hills. Theo worked with the Dread Doctors to his own end. Along the way, he made a pack of undead chimeras – only one of whom was still standing with him by the end. He also roped in my fave, Deucalion, who taught Theo a thing or two about what real power looks like.

With all of these power grabbing, cosplaying shenanigans abound, it was up to Scott’s pack to try to save the 10 residents of Beacon Hills who have not been killed over the last five seasons of Teen Wolf. Of course, there were many obstacles along the way because without them how would we ever get 20 episodes of material? Kira lost control of her foxy side and Malia’s horrible mom returned in pursuit of getting her power back. Lydia spent a very long time in Eichen House either comatose or in jedi training with Meredith. The pack got a few assists from familiar faces including the Argents, Deaton, Braeden and Parrish (who was revealed as a hellhound with an important tie to the Beast).

It is against that backdrop that we entered the Season 5 finale, “Apotheosis.”

Full disclosure, as the episode closed I really had no idea how I would approach writing this review. Was the Season 5 finale of Teen Wolf entertaining? Yes, but being entertained comes at the cost of: (1) setting aside any expectations of substantive closure for the litany of storylines and (2) overlooking your basic need to critically think and engage with the material. That’s pretty much been my experience this season watching the show, but unlike past seasons, I realized that I cared very little about the outcome or consequences for any of the characters. For what it’s worth, I continue to like the cast and what each actor brings to his/her role – including Cody Christian who was superb in his portrayal of Theo’s smug, self-serving ways.

Despite the cast giving it their all, I found it hard to get past the plot contrivances and the disregard for meta in furtherance of the storyline. Is Teen Wolf a guilty pleasure that should be fun to watch? Absolutely. However, as a viewer, I would like to have my 5 seasons of investment rewarded – even if its minimal.

The Good
One of the strengths of the finale, provided you not get too caught up in the details, were the surprise reveals, secret alliances and off-screen plans by the secret alliances. The highlights included:

– Learning that Chris knew Gerard could not be trusted and took measures to ensure that ol’ Mountain ASSSSHHHH did not impede Scott’s plans to defeat the Beast.

– The reveal that my beloved, precious Demon Wolf is not in fact blind, did not harbor a petty grudge against Scott and has been a double agent this entire time. I will fully admit that I loved this twist because I like Deucalion. If it weren’t for how much I love Gideon Emery’s portrayal of Deuclaion, this would have easily been the worst reveal of the episode because there was way too much left off screen.

– Sebastian was not the only vestige of the past roaming around Beacon Hills, as the Nazi creature that was hooked up to Mason in the penultimate episode was revealed to be Marcel.

– It was not exactly shocking to see Theo decide to kill the lone pack member at his side and take Tracy’s powers, but it was satisfying to watch. Arguably, the direction of that scene came off as a bit “satisfying” to Tracy as well. Very interesting direction choices there.


Mmmmkay.

– Watching Theo get dragged to hell. Literally. Watching Deucalion snap Theo’s neck. Watching Kira, after a very delayed entrance into the main action, face off against Theo and absorb his electricity with her sword.

Everything Else . . .
I would not call everything else in the episode bad or meh – I’d consider them the plot twists and reveals that were either not great enough to look past the leaps in logic or those that were a bit of a miss.

– I appreciate that, given the connection of the Beast’s storyline to the Argents, the writers took a shot at having Allison tied to its conclusion. In theory, I’m all on board with the idea of Allison saving her friends in death, as she did in life. Likewise, connecting Allison to Marie makes sense in theory, considering both characters were portrayed by Crystal Reed. The Beast seeing Scott’s memories of Allison just didn’t land for me, particularly because some of the past episode scenes included in the montage did not include Scott when they aired, so I’m not sure why they would be presented as Scott’s memory. This twist needed a little more work in the episodes leading up to the finale. I loved the idea, but the execution left a lot to be desired.

– I wish the writers had left the Desert Wolf storyline for resolution in Season 6. Like the Deucalion reveal, the writers took a LOT of creative license with what they asked viewers to believe happened off screen. This includes buying into the fact that when he was not healing, looking for lost members of the pack or maybe going to school, Scott had time to come up with a plan to take down the Beast and the Desert Wolf.

– With the exception of Tracy, all of the bad guys are still . . . alive? In a season chock full of bad guys, why not kill a few and be done with them forever? Sure, the Dread Doctors are done, but the Surgeon is now on the loose. Theo was dragged to hell, but we really don’t know what became of him after his sister came to collect him. Gerard is still alive, kicking and very much a bad guy. The Desert Wolf, who was willing to kill her daughter in order to reclaim her power, was also spared. I can cut the writers a bit of slack on the Desert Wolf, as they may want to mine that strained family relationship for more storylines.

– As I mentioned last week, one of the biggest problems with the Desert Wolf plot is that it felt very much like a Hale-centered storyline with not a Hale in sight. As you might expect, I was extremely frustrated that there was no surprise appearance by a Hale. Instead, we got a reference to Talia. That’s it. I hope that the writers get at least one actor from the Hale family on contract for Season 6 if they plan to do more with the Desert Wolf. At this point, I’d settle for a CGI wolf that with an actor’s voice-over. LOL.

– It would not be an episode of Teen Wolf if the writers did not continue to tinker with what we at home thought was show canon. Last night’s shenanigans were all about Lydia and her ability to call out Mason’s name and separate him from the Beast. I suspected that this was how Mason would be saved, but I thought it would be Corey. We were told that Lydia saved Jackson by calling out his name because she was his true love. Granted, this could be the case of an unreliable narrator, as it was Peter who told us that Lydia could save Jackson because of the love connection. I would not put it past Peter to keep that tidbit about Lydia saving him because she was a banshee to himself. Too bad Peter was not a factor this season, as it would have been fun to have him make that revelation to the pack and have everyone realize that he is a lying liar who lies. Instead, Peter got two references this season – neither of which addressed his absence from the Eichen House where we last saw him. As an aside, exactly when do you think Corey made his way to the tunnels? Such a lil’ creeper, that one.


– Once we saw the picture in which the Hellhound and the Beast were engaged in fisticuffs on top of a pile of dead bodies (pictured above), I always figured that the Hellhound and the Banshee would be part of resolving the Beast’s storyline. When it was all said and done, the Hellhound distracted the Beast so that Scott could use the pike. I’m okay with that, but I guess I just expected a bit more conflict between the Hellhound and the Beast. I suppose the picture became a less accurate portrayal once the pack worked to find a way to take down the Beast and save people from becoming part of the pile of dead bodies.

– As suspected, Kira made a deal with the skin walkers to stay with them. This decision feels driven by contract issues, rather than a natural progression in her storyline. It would be disappointing for Arden Cho not to be involved in Season 6, but the writers really have not figured out what to do with Kira. What frustrates me most about this is that the writers did such a great job introducing Kira and all of that good work is basically wasted by not really doing anything to advance or involve the character. She’s basically spent most of her time in the post-Nogitsune era as a love interest and she had the potential to be so much more.

Final Thoughts
So, that was an ending. I would not consider it a happy ending or a bad ending – just an ending. I guess Liam got a happy ending with Hayden, now a full-fledged werewolf, by his side and Mason saved from the Beast thanks to some faux-science and supernatural shenanigans. Good for Liam. Let’s hope he’s a little less angst-ridden next season.

None of the ties to the bad guys are resolved for good. Although the Dread Doctors are gone, the Surgeon is still out there. I suppose we’ll see what his next obsession is next season. I suspect how much of we see of the bad guys who managed to stay alive will depend largely upon contract negotiations and actor availability. In an interview with EW, Jeff Davis confirmed that more villains will join the Surgeon next season. Davis also confirmed that the show will return to its 10-episode arc for villains in Season 6, which I think is an EXCELLENT idea. It could have worked this season with better writing. It’s amazing that over the course of 20 episodes, I am still left with serious questions about the motivations and actions of nearly all this season’s villains – not all, but most.

Until Next . . . Season!
What did you think of the Teen Wolf season finale? Will you be back for next season? If so, what would you like to see the pack handle next? Did anyone notice more of the horrible green screen when Scott dropped off Kira with the skin walkers? That’s gotta go in Season 6. Sound off below!