Teen Wolf Season 5, Episode 8: "Ouroboros" Recap/Review

[Ugh, sorry for even more lateness on this recap, you guys. I don't know what's wrong with me, but summer slow-down is making me incapable of doing anything in a timely fashion. Hopefully the next ones are better! Thanks for understanding-- xoxo Emily]

Welp, that was a heartbreaker of an episode, wasn't it? Like, I don't even know what to say about it except that everything seems so bleak in Beacon Hills right now. We've got Scott on the verge of a serious nervous breakdown; Stiles cracking under the weight of his still-secret accidental homicide, Lydia and Malia trying to keep everyone together, and honestly, they're the ones who seem the most "normal" and not "off" right now, which worries me, considering we know Lydia ends up in Eichen House soon, and Malia is about to have some major mommy issues.

Also, Liam and Hayden may or may not end up super violent and/or dead from the stuff the Dread Doctors did to them; Kira is pretty much on her own in every way due to what the Doctors did to her and how it's manifesting; Sheriff is being a douchenozzle of the highest order (Seriously, he's making Rafael McCall look like Melissa McCall at this point), and Theo remains the shadiest spy who ever spied. OH! And the Desert Wolf is not even close to the "assassin who just wants her daughter back!" that we were all hoping for, which is terrifying for many reasons. However, we do have one bright spot, which is that Mason remains the greatest and most loyal friend in the history of friendship, and his inclusion in the pack is probably the best thing about this season, to be honest. Which is saying a lot, because I am loving this season, despite how hard it's been on my poor, dead heart.

So yeah, we have a shitload to discuss and not much time to discuss it, so let's get talking about "Ouroboros," 'kay? 'Kay.

Previously on Teen Wolf: Upon learning that Hayden is a part-werewolf chimera, the pack enacted a last-minute plan to try to protect her and/or catch a Dread Doctor using cellular frequency jammers inside the high school, which worked about as well as you'd imagine. In the end, both Hayden and Liam ended up getting snatched by the Doctors and taken back to their lab, where Hayden was operated on and Liam had a huge tube full of gross fluid stuck into one of his brachial blood vessels in his arm. Deaton, after realizing that they were dealing with hybrid chimera creatures, left to go on one of his international adventures to figure out just what the fuck is going on in Beacon Hills now. Eight or nine years ago, Malia and her adopted mother and sister were in a car accident in which Malia believed she caused after she had her first ever werecoyote transformation on the full moon. However, after the Dread Doctor book brought her repressed memories to the surface, she learned that she hadn't actually caused the crash at all-- it was instead caused by her biological mother, the assassin known as the Desert Wolf, who shot a shitload of bullets into the car and caused Malia's adoptive mother to veer off into the woods where she and Malia's sister ultimately died, and where Malia likely stress-shifted into coyote mode and spent the next eight years living as a forest creature. Which, believe it or not, is sort of where we pick up today!


The cold open begins this week outside some industrial complex somewhere-- judging by the signs, I'm gonna guess we're in Russia-- where what looks like a dead, deformed calf is rotting in the grass and covered by flies. A large military truck drives past it and into the complex, passing a large yellow hazardous waste sign with warnings written in Russian Cyrillic-- "опасность"/"Opasnost'"/"Danger," and "не заходить"/"Ne zakhodit'"/"Do not enter." After a moment, several men dressed in black jeans, black hoodies with the hoods up, and black gas masks over their faces (some of whom with assault rifles in their hands) depart from the military vehicle and start making their way to a derelict, seemingly abandoned building. An unarmed man breathes deeply through his mask before leading another man down the stairs into some sort of industrial basement of sorts, using flashlights to look around the staircase as they do so. Of course, by the time they get to the bottom, they can hear the sound of the military truck's ignition turning on before the rest of the men get the fuck out of dodge, leaving their cohorts there all alone. That totally makes this place seem very safe and secure and not at all scary, right?

The leader looks up to see them drive away and takes off his gas mask, revealing that he is, in fact, Alan Deaton! YAY! It's about damn time we caught up with him. Also, he has a very recognizable body language, because I assumed it was him from the moment we saw him. "I guess it's just you and me," Deaton quips to his accomplice, who removes his own mask to reveal he's a man in his late 20s-early 30s who seems scared out of his wits as the two continue their walk-through of the facility. "I take it you don't believe the official story about nuclear radiation?" Deaton asks the man conversationally as they pass through what looks like a wet, slimy sewer of sorts, but the man, who has a very Slavic accent, just shakes his head and insists that this isn't a nuclear plant by any means.

Deaton seems to have expected this answer and asks him if he knows what it is, or what it was used for, but all the man (whose name is apparently Vadim) knows are the rumors and superstitions that have surrounded the complex. Just then, they come upon a sign on the wall in Cyrillic script that also has another statement spray-painted over it. The original sign says the same thing the outside sign says ("вход строто воспрещен"/"Vkhod stoto vospreshchen," or "Entrance prohibited.")  but the tagging reads, "они придут. они придут за всем нам,"/"Oni pridut. Oni pridut za vsem nam," which, as Vadim translates, is Russian for "They come. They come for all of us." Thank you, Natalya, my beautiful Russian friend and Busuu correspondent, for teaching me some rudimentary Russian all those years ago when I was teaching people English, because that made researching all this stuff way easier.

Anyway, Deaton ain't no fool, so he immediately realizes that Vadim is talking about "the men in masks," like the ones that they were just wearing, only instead of modern brown rubber, the Dread Doctors' masks are made out of like, bronze and brass and other alloy metals that are way older and covered in verdigris. When they both get back to looking around, Deaton asks his accomplice for the story, but Vadim doesn't have much to say. "They say they never took off the mask. Some people believed they had no faces underneath." Of course, we know that they at least sometimes take off their mask, because the one (the Geneticist, I think?) had their mask off at the end of the last episode and their head was bald and scarred, like the Jennifer Blake was in Darach-form, and they had a very suspicious hole drilled into their head behind their ear like Lorraine did in the flashbacks in "Required Reading." Regardless though, I think we can all agree that the Dread Doctors are creepy as fuck, and if they got their start in Russia, then we've probably got some World War II or Cold War-era shit going down, which is both exciting and terrifying. Vadim continues on to say that the Doctors were known to have a symbol-- "The snake that eats itself," also known as the ouroboros, which, naturally, is hung up on the wall next to them.

Except that wall is actually a sliding door, like the one in Derek's loft (*sniffles* COME BACK DEREK), and when Deaton opens the door to see what's inside, they're all horrified by what they find-- dusty bottles full of various gross-colored fluids; shelves full of human bones organized by type (skulls on top, pelvic bones underneath them, radius and ulna bones in the next cubby); sickening-looking things floating around in jars of liquid; and something skittering around in the background that is making me very nervous. Did you guys know that Jeff Davis, the showrunner for Teen Wolf, was also the showrunner for Criminal Minds? It's something that I'm always reminded of when we see creepy and almost traumatically-scary scenes like this in these shows, because someone had to come up with the terrifying serial killers on CM. At the sight of the jars, Vadim curses unintelligibly in Russian under his breath and asks Deaton what the fuck is in there. When Deaton replies, "Failed experiments," Vadim can't believe that they'd experiment on children, but it actually gets worse-- there are human fetuses in those jars, which means the Doctors were experimenting on them in the womb. YIKES! The Dread Doctors are even more terrifying than I ever imagined. That is some seriously awful, Valentine Morgenstern-level shit.

A weird noise is heard from nearby, and Vadim swings his gun/flashlight combo around to try to find the source while Deaton continues looking around with his own flashlight. They find the skeleton of a very young child laying on the table next to a plate of some kind with a glass domed lid over top. When Deaton lifts the lid and picks up a small piece of bone inside to examine it more closely, Vadim asks him if it's a claw, but nope-- it's a tooth, which apparently tells Deaton everything he needs to know, though he doesn't explain any further. Instead, he just says, "I think I found what I'm looking for [...] An answer," before adding that they need to get the hell out of there immediately. Unfortunately for poor, sweet Vadim, he doesn't even get a chance to finish turning around when he's shot right in the head, and Deaton quickly spins and gets in a defensive position as he tries to identify Vadim's attacker.

"Easy, Doctor," the woman says calmly as we see her feet walking toward Deaton, wearing very, very familiar-looking boots-- the same boots we saw the woman who shot at Mama Tate's car in the flashbacks in "A Novel Approach!" OH SHIT, CAN IT BE??? The camera pans up to the butt of the rifle (which has a sound-suppressor on it) the woman has pointed at Deaton, which is still smoking, as she adds, "I know you have skills, but I'm pretty sure I can shoot faster than you can hit." She then walks into the light so we can see her face, and I have to say, I'm a little delighted to see Marisol Nichols playing her-- you may remember her as Chris Halliwell's fiancée from the future in Season Six of Charmed, or Tony Dinozzo's girlfriend Zoe in the most recent season of NCIS, or G. Callen's fake wife in Season Two of NCIS: Los Angeles, or a ton of other things. (Gods, I seriously watch too much TV, it's almost embarrassing. Almost.)

I guess what I'm trying to say is that she's pretty great, and I'm especially loving her in this role, given how similar she looks to Shelley Hennig. I mean, both of their eyes are the same shape and color, and they definitely look like they could be related, aside from the fact that Marisol is Latina and Shelley is white. They're really good at casting actors and actresses who look similar to the ones who are playing their family members or younger selves. Anyway, back to the story, where Deaton is still being held up by the shooter. "Do you know who I am?" the woman asks with a smirk, and Deaton slowly lowers his flashlight before replying, "I know what you're called... The Desert Wolf." HOLY SHIT, YESSS! The camera zooms into her face as she evil-smirks all over the place, and though I was expecting some indication that she's a supernatural, like her eyes flashing blue like Malia's, but we don't actually get it. Is she even a werecoyote? I need to know everything about her right meow! TITLE CARD!

When we return, we pick up shortly after where we left off in "Strange Frequencies," except we're now in the woods of Beacon Hills, where Scott is frantically running and running and running as far and as fast as he can to try to track Liam and/or Hayden. He ends up making it to Look-Out Point, where he can see the electricity-lit city below, and what looks like a waning crescent moon in the sky. Didn't Melissa say that a full moon is coming up? Because unless its the clouds obscuring the moon, that is actually much closer to a new moon. Whatever, doesn't matter. Anyway, he makes it to the very edge of the cliff, almost slipping and falling over it in the process, and howls at the top of his lungs. Malia, who apparently split up from Scott so they could cover more ground, hears his howl and wastes no time scampering over to her Alpha to see what the hell is going on. When she gets to Look-Out Point, she finds Scott on his hands and needs on the ground, where he's gasping for breath and generally freaking out about the fact that not only is there no scent whatsoever, but there are no tracks, so he has no idea how he's supposed to find them. Malia points out that Scott howled, which means Liam should be able to howl back and help him get a location, but, of course, that is dependent on whether or not Liam even heard him in the first place, and since they don't know where he actually is, it's likely that he didn't. Oh, Scottie. :(

Meanwhile, at the McCall house, things aren't going very well for Melissa, either. She's pale-faced and visibly panicking when she opens the door to find Sheriff Stilinski standing on the porch, who admits that he hasn't been able to get in touch with their boys either before trying to walk into the house. When Melissa immediately moves to block him from entering, Sheriff gives her a confused look and brings up the fact that Melissa said that she has a "situation," so isn't she gonna let him inside? Melissa, however, being the badass that she is, briefly explains that the aforementioned situation is complicated, and that if he's going to come in, then he needs to leave his badge at the door. Sheriff, thinking she's joking, is like, "Uh, literally or figuratively?" but Melissa doesn't fuck around when it has to do with her cubs (and yes, I consider Melissa a co-parent to literally all of the McCall pack kids, including Parrish, and I feel the same way about Noshiko and Ken, though they'll always protect Kira before anyone else. I used to think Sheriff was like Melissa in that way, but what's about to happen has me questioning it), so she tells him that doing both would be preferable. MELISSA, YOU BEAUTIFUL ANGEL OF THE LORD, I LOVE YOU SO MUCH.

"I've set my badge aside a few too many times in the last couple of weeks..." Sheriff hesitantly begins, but Melissa pretty much just rolls her eyes and responds, all, "Well, suck it up, because we all know that 95% of the Sheriff's department's work is actually done by our children, who are the only people equipped to deal with the non-stop supernatural disasters because magic isn't written into the legal code, so do you want to come in or not?" Sheriff finally sighs and shoves his badge in his pocket, comforting Melissa enough to step aside so she can lead him into the kitchen, where the body of Freddy Krueger and Lady Deathstrike's chimera lovechild is still laying splayed out on the table with Kira's katana sticking out of her chest. Sheriff is understandably shocked at the sight of her, but instead of acting rationally and considering all the options, he just straight-out assumes that Kira had something to do with it and asks Melissa if she's seen her tonight.

"You don't think she did this, do you?" Melissa asks incredulously, because seriously, has he met Kira? Cute, shy, awkward Kira, who is loyal to her friends to a fault and is the thunder princess to Scott's sunshine prince? Melissa goes on to ask if he thinks that this has something to do with Scott, like someone trying to send him a message, but instead of answering, Sheriff just reaches for the radio on his shoulder to call it in, despite Melissa's strict instructions to not act rashly about this like he's doing right now. "Dispatch, this is Sheriff Stilinski. I got a 1-8-7 at 821 Williamson Road, notify Beacon Hills Memorial." Melissa's face has gone stone-cold, and the second Sheriff hangs up, she rears her arm back and slaps him full in the face, which in my humble opinion, he fully deserves for being an asscrown. (Not an assclown, either-- "No, I mean asscrown. The crown on top of the asshat that covers the asshole of the assclown. The very zenith in the hierarchy of asses." Forgive me for The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer reference, but the quote seemed very appropriate.)

Forgive me for the longest sidebar ever (seriously, it's like ten paragraphs total, so feel free to skip it-- my feels really got the best of me regarding Sheriff and Melissa because ARGH, it really pisses me off. So, the first time we saw this scene at the end of this season's premiere episode "Creatures of the Night," I assumed that Melissa slapping Sheriff had to do with Scott, because only someone fucking over her pride and joy could cause the usually-unflappable Melissa to lose her temper. And in a way, it kind of is, because Sheriff fucking over Kira is basically fucking over Scott and the rest of the pack by association, but regardless, it was definitely not what I was expecting. I still love it, though, because 1) As I mentioned earlier, I consider Melissa to be a sort of second-mother to all the characters because of how willing she is to help the McCall Pack and their allies, so her defense of Kira just helps support my headcanon, and 2) obviously Melissa cares a lot about Kira because of how much she means to Scott, which is also something I adore, because Scott deserves ALL THE LOVE.

I mean, think about it-- Kira is the girl who went against her own mother to help Scott save his best friend, who grieved with him after Allison died, who jumped into the pack with both feet as soon as she learned about the supernatural and fought at Scott's side in battle after battle, who helped bring him back from the dead after he faked his death to lure out the Benefactor, and who proved to Scott that you truly can fall in love more than once after the loss of Allison as his girlfriend and his anchor. Plus, I like to think that Melissa and Noshiko are buds now, after their little bonding time last season, so it just seems right that she's fighting so hard for Kira now that it's her turn to desperately need it. It's only fair, plus Scott obviously wouldn't want her to aid in Kira getting arrested-- he may be a little wary about everything that is going on (and I don't know if that's because he's being manipulated or because of his past experiences with kitsunes or what), but if he were there, he'd be arguing against taking Kira in just like Melissa is.

Fortunately for everyone, Sheriff isn't being so much of a short-sighted idiot that he arrests Melissa for assaulting a police officer, but the argument they have next doesn't really do much to make him look any better. "There's a dead girl in your kitchen with a sword sticking out of her chest," Sheriff insists, clearly shocked and a little appalled that Melissa had the ovaries to slap him like that. "What did you think I was going to do?" And, I mean, come on, Sheriff-- Melissa isn't exactly happy about this girl dying for whatever reason, and I highly doubt she wants to be complicit in covering it up either, but again-- this isn't a typical murder case here. The fact that neither of them bring up the fact that this girl is obviously a chimera seems kind of weird to me. How is Sheriff supposed to explain the fact that her fingers are stained black with werewolf ink and have long, needle-thin claws coming out of the tips? At this point, the city is going to figure it all out one way or another unless Sheriff starts covering this shit up, and if he gave a shit about these kids and the things they do to protect the town, he would-- if the FBI or some other governmental agency starts getting involved, you know those kids are going to be locked up and maybe even tested, which, admittedly, isn't that much different from what's already happening, but that doesn't make it good.

Anyway, Melissa argues that he has to know that Kira didn't do this, but Sheriff just yells, "This is murder! This kid-- this child-- has a family. What, am I supposed to just cover that up?" Um, yeah, you should at least consider it, because I seem to remember a point in the past when your son was possessed by a nogitsune, during which time he did a ton of fucked up shit, including: tampering with the electrical generator at the hospital (causing a live wire to flip around that caused the deaths and severe injuries of a handful of people who were subsequently electrocuted); murdering Katashi and planting evidence in the Argent house to frame Chris and Derek for it; setting a trap that caused Coach to get shot in the stomach with an arrow; and creating a fake bomb threat at the school to cover up the real bomb that was at the Sheriff's station (causing the deaths and injuries of another couple dozen people total). Pretty sure that all those victims had families too, and Stiles himself was never even legally accused of hurting and killing those people, let alone arrested for it, even after Stiles and the nogitsune split apart and the latter started running around wearing the former's face and going on huuuuuge slaughtering sprees at the hospital, the Sheriff's station, and the animal clinic.

That's not to say that I think Stiles should have been arrested for it, or that he's to blame for those deaths, because he's not-- that was the nogitsune, plain and simple. But, to me, Kira and Stiles' situations aren't really that different. Stiles was possessed by the spirit of a nogitsune and was forced to watch from inside his mind as his body was used to cause chaos and pain everywhere, and Kira's kitsune spirit-- which we already know is now operating independently of Kira's human mind-- has seemingly overtaken her body and is now controlling her as a result of what the Dread Doctors did to her. (Kira herself will even later describe the sensation of walking around afterward as feeling like she was sleepwalking). So, Sheriff clearly has a double-standard going on here, which isn't right or fair in the least, and it's also not the first time something like this has happened. Back in "Smoke & Mirrors," Stiles was fighting with Sheriff because Scott and Kira were kidnapped by Kate and taken to Mexico, and instead of letting Stiles go with Malia, Braeden, Derek, Peter, Liam, et al to go rescue them, he wanted to deal with it like any other kidnapping despite knowing from first-hand experience that Kate and the berserkers could not be handled by regular old human police officers and federal agents. And, when Stiles pretty much told him as much, Sheriff threatened to throw him in a cell to prevent him from going to help, knowing that not going to rescue them immediately could result in Scott and Kira being killed.

And I mean, I understand that Sheriff is just a human who was elected to protect the county, and he's having a ridiculously hard time doing it because Beacon Hills is pretty much a Hellmouth that draws every single thing that goes bump in the night their way, and he's basically at the end of his wits because he didn't ask for any of this and he knows there's nothing he himself can really do to stop it or help it, and he hates it, and he hates having to lie about what is happening and put himself and his job at risk. I get that so he's a law enforcement officer who is struggling to accept that there is a world where the law isn't applicable, or at least not human laws, anyway. But, in my opinion, that doesn't really excuse his behavior. If he treated Stiles one way, then he needs to treat everyone that way, because-- just like Deaton already reminded him several episodes ago, and like Noshiko will later remind him again-- if Sheriff isn't ready and/or willing to come out to the town and say "Uh, so yeah, supernatural creatures are real, just FYI" in order to explain all of the weirdo things going on, then he's going to have to learn to accept that a fair amount of covering stuff up is going to be necessary. Besides, all this is just assuming that Kira was actually the person who killed this woman, which we still don't know for sure yet-- in the previous episode, Kira said on two separate occasions that she lost her sword, so it's still quite possible that she didn't even do it at all and is actually being framed for it. But, even if Kira did kill this woman, it wasn't really her-- it was the overpowered kitsune spirit within her that was given the position of control by the Dread Doctors, which means she's just as much a victim as the rest of them. Kira didn't ask for this to happen to her, either.

So, you'd think Sheriff would at least want to find some answers to those questions before moving forward, right? As it turns out, no, he wouldn't-- he has to be in the midst of some kind of mental breakdown or something, because when Melissa continues to glare at him mutinously, he maintains that this is a crime, and it's his job to handle it within the parameters of the law. Melissa is pissed at this reaction, as you could easily guess, and quite rightly reminds him that, hello, there are no laws about scientifically-created hybrids of various supernatural creatures, ancient Doctors who can control electromagnetic frequencies, coyote girls and werewolf boys and fox spirits in the shape of humans, so the things that their children have to do to protect the civilians of this town exist outside the law. It's actually reminding me a lot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, to be honest, and how Buffy and Faith constantly struggled with having to be the law in an arena where regular human laws just don't apply.

Unfortunately, Sheriff just snaps, "But not above the law," as though that actually makes sense, before pinning his badge back onto his jacket just as sirens start wailing as police cruisers pull up to the McCall house. Man, Melissa's glare goes from icy-cold to nuclear-level fury in the span of about a second, and I have a feeling Sheriff is soon going to seriously regret ever having fucked her over. Also, how upset must Melissa be right now that she tried her best to protect Kira and still ended up getting her into trouble? The thought of it alone increases my rage toward him like, tenfold, to be honest.

Speaking of Kira, she's walking in a daze on Route 115, where she and her parents (and Theo and his "parents") were stuck in traffic in the premiere, just like we speculated in the last recap. Cars behind her honk at her to get out of the way, and when she doesn't seem to notice them, they swerve around her and drive off. After a moment, red and blue lights start to flash behind her, because of course the police are going to find her when she's in the midst of a kitsune fugue state. Somehow, the sound of the cruiser's sirens seem to snap her out of it, and she turns around just in time to see Clarke, Sheriff's new deputy, park the car and get out to check on her. "Hi there," she begins in a soft, sweet voice. "You doing okay?" Kira suddenly seems to realize that she's actually walking in the middle of the road and has no idea how she got out there, and after a moment, she remembers that something had happened there, and that's why she came. When she says as much, Clarke points out that cars that are moving very fast are usually a thing that happen on Route 115, so at the very least, she should probably get out of the road for her own safety.

Kira frowns in confusion and looks around for a moment before insisting that she thinks she came here to remember something, and Clarke humors her. "That's fair. But, considering how late it is, I'm thinking your parents are gonna be a little worried about you." She gently puts her arm around Kira's shoulders and leads her toward the cruiser, and Kira eventually just goes along with it, thinking-- just like the rest of us-- that Clarke is just the one police officer who is actually as sweet and caring as she claims to be. Of course, as soon as she has Kira settled in the back of the cruiser, Clarke quickly grabs the handcuffs that are hanging from the bar in the back and closes one around Kira's right wrist. Kira understandably begins to panic, because what the hell, she thought she was just getting a ride home, but Clarke grabs her radio and states, "This is Deputy Clarke, I've got the suspect. I'm bringing her in." Girl, that's cold! Of course, I've never met a cop IRL who wasn't a huge asshole (including several police officers in my own family), so maybe I'm just biased.

Meanwhile, over at the animal clinic, Stiles is still sitting on the ground where Theo had pulled him out of the wreckage of his overturned Jeep, his face still covered in Theo's blood from when Jordan punched him with his flaming fist as he watches Theo flip his car back over. Of course, the boys don't know that Jordan is the one who attacked them, because they're too overwhelmed by everything that has happened to them in the last few hours to be paying attention to the video feed they taped of the clinic, but I get the feeling that they'll figure it out soon enough. Also, I thought Theo was a weakling? Didn't Malia overpower him a couple episodes ago? Was that just for show? I'm confused.

Anyway, he goes over to Stiles and states that they need to get him to the hospital, since Stiles likely inhaled quite a bit of smoke while he was passed out, but Stiles insists that he's fine before getting up and inspecting his dear Roscoe, who is definitely not in good shape. The side mirrors are all broken, the roof is kind of crushed in, and I'm guessing the suspension is probably a mess, so Stiles looks like he's either going to cry or punch something, or maybe both. Naturally, Stiles doesn't get any more time to process what the fuck is going on before both boys hear voices coming from Stiles' police radio, which, in a miraculous twist, is somehow still working. "Suspect in 1-8-7 is in custody and en route to station," the dispatcher starts off. "Suspect's name is Yukimura, Kira." Stiles is understandably horrified by this revelation, and Theo looks pretty wary himself before he plays dumb and asks him what a 1-8-7 means. "Homicide," Stiles replies with an exhausted sigh. UGH, HATE THIS. Leave Kira alone!

Over in the Dread Doctors' scary basement lab, they're still doing weird procedures on Hayden while Liam is left on the floor, his arm still hooked up to a really big tube that seems to be pumping blackish fluid from one of the small, bubbling tanks of liquid nearby (not the one with the body, fortunately) into his veins. He's weak and covered in a thin sheen of sweat as he summons up all the energy he can muster and tries to pull out the tube with little success. Poor Hayden, who doesn't so much look scared by this point as she does miserable, is sweating profusely as well, and I don't blame her, because she's still laying on her stomach and strapped to the exam table, unable to move as the Doctors continue to surround her and do whatever it is they're doing to her. After a moment, an alarm starts to go off, and Liam flips back over onto his back to see that flashing lights are going off around the tank with the body floating inside it that is connected to some scuba-style breathing apparatus. I don't know, all of this stuff is gross and way outside my wheelhouse where medical stuff is concerned.

The Pathologist walks over to the tank in that glitchy, phantom-y way of theirs and sticks a large silver syringe into a port on the tank. At first glance, I thought they were medicating the guy floating around inside, but in reality I'm pretty sure that they're actually taking fluid out of the body and drawing it up into the syringe. Yikes! It's kind of greenish-yellow, for what it's worth, and we get a glimpse of the fingertips of the floating man, which are dark, swollen, and spongy-looking looking as they twitch a bit while the Pathologist works.

When the Doctor returns to the exam table to continue working on Hayden, the Geneticist takes a black light and runs it over the skin covering the back of Hayden's neck and spine, which glows blue in  a really weird scaly pattern. Apparently, these are called Blaschko lines, and they're characteristic of genetic chimeras, but it's still worrisome all the same if you ask me. Of course, the Surgeon says, "Her condition worsens," which just makes me more stressed out, because I really don't want Hayden to die. since she's awesome and we need all the badass girls we can get on this show. Liam agrees with me, because when he sees them take the syringe full of green tank-juice and inject it into the incision on Hayden's side, he starts yelling at them to stop hurting her. The Doctors don't really care much for insubordination, though, so when Liam wolfs out to try to get the strength to unhook himself from the machines and save his best girl, the Pathologist walks back up and stomps him in the head. STOP HURTING LIAM AND HAYDEN! THIS IS TOO MUCH. Why would anyone want to hurt that precious boy? These Doctors are evil as fuck.

We finally get to kind of see what Jordan is up to when he's not stealing bodies, and that's apparently showering off all of the ash, soot, and burned clothing from his latest immolation ritual at the Nemeton. Given how dead his eyes look as he leans against the wall and lets the water and ashes rinse off of him, I'm guessing he's still only semi-aware at the most of what the hell is going on with him-- it actually reminds me a lot of that one shower scene we got with Jackson when he was the kanima, where he was washing all the blood off of his clawed hands, which might be confirmation that Jordan is being controlled by something, whether it's his own inner-creature or an external force like the Nemeton or something.

Anyway, he's broken out of his daze by the sound of the telephone ringing, so he hastily wraps a towel around his waist and rushes into the living room to answer it. I guess shirtless Jordan is the new shirtless Derek, now that Hoechlin is gone? I don't hate it, to be honest. As it turns out, it's Clarke calling him to ask him where the hell he is. Jordan's like, "Uh, it's four in the morning, so I'm at home like a normal person?" but apparently Sheriff has called in every single deputy to report for work ASAP because they found another body. "You mean another murder," Jordan replies, and he gets this weird look in his eye, like his unconscious mind is perking up at the thought of having another body to burn or something. Parrish, what the fuck is up with you? I NEED TO KNOW.

We cut over to the station, where Kira is sitting on the bench outside Sheriff's office, her wrist handcuffed to the bar just like Derek and Chris were in "Letharia Vulpina." When Kira looks over at the nearby desk, she sees Deputy Clarke taking samples from Kira's sword, which is still covered in the blood of the redheaded chimera, and the sight of which makes Kira even more miserable. Doesn't the Beacon County Sheriff's Department have actual forensic techs to do that stuff? Weird. Just then, Sheriff returns to the bullpen and sees Kira rubbing her sore wrist under the handcuff, so he turns to Clarke and says the sole reasonable thing that comes out of his mouth the entire episode-- "Somebody get these cuffs off of her. If she actually was involved, it was self-defense." Oh, really, Sheriff? That wasn't the tune you were singing earlier! Fortunately, Kira's badass parents have arrived to the station to pick up where Melissa left off, earlier. "That's correct, Sheriff," Ken begins, but Kira immediately cuts him off and begs him not to say anything, which he promptly ignores in favor of telling Sheriff that the sword belongs to him. Sheriff sighs and rolls his eyes, like, "Seriously?", and even Kira insists that he's lying and that the katana is actually hers, but Ken already has a story all cooked up.
KEN: "I was attacked in my home. I grabbed a replica sword from my collection and defended myself."
SHERIFF: [skeptically] "And how exactly did the body end up at the McCall's house?"
NOSHIKO: [drolly] "Apparently, she wasn't quite dead."
KEN: "Sheriff, I have a call into my lawyer. If you need to take me into custody, I'm happy to surrender myself."
SHERIFF: [exasperatedly] "This is what you're gonna go with? This is your story?"
NOSHIKO: [stares at him pointedly] "Are you prepared to tell a different one?"
YESSS! TELL HIM, NOSHIKO! TELL HIM! Gods, I love the Yukimuras so damn much. Ken is already a king among men, because he's in the same position as Sheriff and Melissa when it comes to being involved in the supernatural while still being a regular human, but instead of going crazy like some people (*glares at Sheriff*), he manages to stay calm and rational during times of crisis, and isn't at all afraid to do whatever it takes to protect his daughter and her pack. And Noshiko may have the tendency to be cold in a Victoria Argent kind of way, but her no-tolerance policy for bullshit will always be my favorite thing about her, and it's a necessary quality to have when dealing with people who don't want to face the reality of their current situation.

And the worst part was that at the beginning of the scene, it seemed as though Sheriff was possibly ready to concede that maybe Melissa was right, and that even though he had to go by the law, he still mostly believed that Kira wasn't a stone-cold killer and was willing to pursue the self-defense angle. But now, Noshiko and Ken come in and start blurring the lines again by covering for her, and he's so appalled that they're yanking this back out of his control again (after Deaton asked him to do the same with regards to Tracy's body in "Condition Terminal," and Melissa also tried to do it by wanting him to cover up Kira's possible involvement earlier in the episode) that now he's back to being pissy about it and will now be trying even harder to squeeze the supernatural side of Beacon Hills into a code of laws that don't fit at all.

It's clear that Stiles gets his control-freakiness from him, because this is a "I'm freaking out because I know I have no control over everything so I must find something I can control and channel all of my panic and fear into it" situation if I've ever seen one. With Stiles, it was his paranoia toward Theo (which seems to be on the back burner for now, at least, while they're working together) and now his cover-up of Donovan's death, and with Sheriff, it's trying to pretend like the Sheriff's department stands a chance at dealing with supernatural problems without supernatural assistance, even though the McCall Pack proved forever ago that things go easier if the police just let them figure it out. Again, it's totally understandable that Sheriff would feel this way, but that doesn't make it less maddening, that's for sure.

Back at the Dread Doctor lab, they've apparently finished whatever they were doing on Hayden, because they throw her onto the floor next to where Liam is laying while he continues to be infused with whatever is in that black fluid and then leave to do whatever it is they do-- maybe they're checking on another test subject, or scouting new genetic chimeras to experiment on, I don't know. Once they're gone, Liam slowly pushes himself onto his side and scoots over so he's laying right next to Hayden and asks her if she's doing okay, but it's clear by the pretty large and swollen incisions on her side that are leaking werewolf ink that she's not. She weakly replies that it hurts before groaning in pain and clutching her side, so Liam gets an idea and asks her to give him her hand, which she does. "There's something Scott does," Liam explains breathlessly. "He can take away the pain. I've never done it before, but I can try." Liam, you sweet angel, I love you so much!

I know that in the past, I've talked about how worrisome the pain-drain thing is, especially since Scott takes it to a level that is practically self-harm, but I do love that Liam has seen Scott do it enough times that he knows it's possible and is willing to learn how to do it and take Hayden's pain, even though he's clearly not in the best shape himself. The Scott McCall Effect is real! Hayden nods to encourage him to try it, but unfortunately, no matter how hard Liam focuses, he can't figure out how to make it work, and after a moment, the pain gets so bad that Hayden is forced to let go of his hand so she can press it against her side instead. Liam looks like he feels absolutely terrible about it and apologizes for not being able to help, but it's clear Hayden doesn't hold it against him. "Why are they doing this to us?" Hayden asks quietly, but Liam has no idea, and neither do I, to be honest. What is their endgame? Obviously, they're trying to find some sort of perfect combination of creatures and subject qualities to come up with some sort of "success," but to what end? Are they trying to create a new race of supernaturals? Are they trying to cure something? Are they trying to cure themselves? The do kind of give off the impression that their bodies are a mess, with the breathing tubes and the sword canes and everything, so it's definitely possible. I just want some damn answers!

Meanwhile, back at the Sheriff's station, Scott has just heard what happened and has rushed over to see Kira, who is standing in the bullpen while her parents talk to Sheriff Stilinski. Scott is as appalled as the rest of us about what is happening and is like, "They're not really gonna arrest him, are they?", but Kira, who is clearly not happy either, says that they have to, since Ken essentially confessed to the crime. Scott turns the subject to the chimera they found at his house and asks her if she remembers anything about it, but Kira swears that she doesn't and insists that it was like she was sleepwalking, and then suddenly, she "woke up" to find she was standing in the middle of the road. Scott, ever the Alpha, assures her that they'll figure it all out together, but Kira is also worried about Hayden and Liam, since she has since learned what happened to them as well.

When she asks what they're going to do about it, Scott informs her that everyone is going to meet at his house to try to come up with a rescue plan, and hesitates for a moment before adding, "I don't wanna leave you, but I... I've got to find them." Aw, Scott! Poor guy is being pulled in like, five different directions, and he still thinks it's his fault that Liam and Hayden were taken in the first place. I think Kira can sense it as well, because she insists that she knows, and when Scott assures her that he wouldn't leave under normal circumstances (not that Kira's situation is normal circumstances either, but you get what I mean). Kira promises that she understands before explaining that her mother is taking her home anyway, because they have to talk to a lawyer. "There's nothing anyone can do right now," she says finally, understanding that for now, Liayden is the priority. "You should go." Scott gives her a sympathetic look and goes to leave, but before he does, Kira stops him. "Scott... You don't think it was me, do you?" Scott hesitates for a moment before assuring her that he doesn't, but between the pause and the look on his face, Kira doesn't seem to believe him, and I don't blame her, honestly. I'm really hoping that all this out-of-character behavior by Scott is the result of some kind of manipulation, because it seriously doesn't make any sense to me whatsoever.

Speaking of out-of-character behavior, Scott has just returned to his house, where Theo, Stiles, and Malia are waiting for him downstairs. Stiles wastes no time rushing over to him to ask him if Kira is okay, but Scott either ignores him or is too intent on the task at hand to pay attention to their presence whatsoever. He instead rushes up the stairs, where he finds Mason, Lydia, and Corey in his bedroom. Corey is on Scott's bed, trying to read the Dread Doctors book, and when he sees Scott, he informs him that he's still only on the second chapter and apologizes for being a slow reader. Mason assures him that it's okay, but Scott insists that Corey is right. "We don't have time for that anyway," he continues, before flicking his claws out and jamming them into the back of Corey's neck, despite Lydia's desperate protests to the contrary. Corey gasps in surprise and pain, and Scott does the same as the camera spins around the two of them dizzily for quite a while until it comes back around to focus on Scott, whose eyes suddenly glow bright red. In the background, Mason and Lydia are looking at them, all, "Aww, here we go."

Back at the creepy laboratory, Liam and Hayden have recovered enough to at least move into a seated position, where Liam is bracing his bound arm while Hayden yanks the infusion tube out of his antecubital space. It takes so long to do that it's almost excruciating to watch, and the huge tube seems to be pretty far into his arm, but after a few moments of groaning in pain on Liam's part and pulling on Hayden's, the tube finally comes free, though a worrisome amount of black fluid and blood pours out of the wound once it's gone. YIKES! Hayden frantically apologizes for hurting him and asks him if he's okay, but Liam smiles weakly and replies, "It'll heal. We'll both heal."

Of course, that's when the Dread Doctors show up, after having somehow been alerted that Hayden messed with whatever it was that they were doing to Liam, so one grabs Hayden by the hair and holds her down while another holds Liam back, allowing the Surgeon to inject her in the neck with that huge syringe of theirs, which is presumably full of that mercury stuff they injected Tracy and Donovan with in "Parasomnia" and "Dreamcatchers." Liam struggles against them and shouts at them not to hurt her, but once they're done with Hayden, they inject Liam in the neck with the same substance, which presumably knocks both of them out. EW! They didn't even swap out needles! That is at the very least unhygienic and at the worst asking for one of them to get some kind of awful sickness or graft-versus-host syndrome as a result of getting Hayden's blood in Liam's system or something. Yeah, these dudes definitely don't give a shit about modern medical practices, probably because they're ancient and give no shits about any of them outside of their experimental progress.

Meanwhile, at the Sheriff's station, Sheriff is sitting on the edge of his desk in his office and is staring exasperatedly at Melissa while he holds a police report in his hands. "This is your official statement?" Sheriff asks tiredly, but Melissa, being the badass that she is, gives him her best "Who, me?" face and asks him if there's something wrong. "The part about finding the body in your kitchen works fine," Sheriff replies, doing his best not to lose his temper again. "But then, it gets a little confusing when you describe the body as a monstrous chimera, and then go on about werewolves, banshees, kanimas..." YES MELISSA YES! If he's going to be so adamant about playing by the rules, then he's going to have to play by all of the rules, which means being the police officer who comes forward and announces the existence of supernatural creatures in Beacon Hills. "You're right!" Melissa chirps. "I forgot about the Dread Doctors." HAHAHAHAHAHA. Melissa McCall for Queen of the World 2015, am I right? She is the most flawless TV character to have ever existed.

She then stands up and yanks the report out of his hands before sitting down and giving her best angry glare, but before Sheriff can start yelling at her for having the audacity to insist that he follow his own orders, Clarke comes in and informs her boss that she got the report in about the prank call from the school library they got the other night. Apparently, she was in the middle of filing it when she noticed the names, which, as we already know, are definitely gonna punch a hole in Sheriff's resolve. OH SHIT! What perfect timing! Sheriff disagrees with me, though, and sighs in annoyance before asking her what it is that she needs.

"I was..." Clarke begins, stammering awkwardly. "I checked the key cards for the library. They're for after-hours use..." She sees the unhappy expressions on both Sheriff and Melissa's faces and immediately realizes that she's totally interrupting a tense discussion before asking Sheriff if he wants her to come back later. Exasperated, Sheriff rolls his eyes and asks her why the hell she's telling him about library key cards, so Clarke gets to the point. "The system logged two names right around the time of the 911 call. [...] Theo Raeken... and your son, Stiles." Well, well, well, how the tables have turned! And the angry-and-smug look Melissa shoots Sheriff at this news seriously killed me, it was so damn perfect! Bless you, Melissa McCall, bless you and your everlasting light, and for birthing the most wonderful child in existence.

I wonder if Sheriff will be arresting his own son when he finally learns that Stiles killed Donovan like he arrested Kira? (That's a rhetorical question, though, because we all know he won't. And, really, it's not even that I want him to do so, because I don't-- I just want him to fucking realize already that he's being kind of a hypocrite here. You can't be perfectly willing to brush your son's illegal activities under the rug and not do the same for the rest of the members of his son's pack, all of whom are sacrificing their teenage experiences and risking their very lives to solve the supernatural mysteries and dispatch the supernatural villains against whom the very human police force-- Jordan excluded, of course-- wouldn't stand a chance in hell. When is Sheriff going to admit that these kids have been doing his job for over almost two years now?)

Also, on a different note, I was wondering how Donovan managed to get into the library, because we saw him using a key card to get into the library when he was chasing Stiles in "A Novel Approach," and I had thought he was too old to still be in high school. But now we know that Theo gave him his key card just in case, which is exactly the kind of evidence Stiles has been trying to find against Theo all season. Of course, since no one can tell the damn truth this season, no one will put it together that Theo sent Donovan after Stiles (at least not any time soon, anyway), because since Sheriff doesn't know Stiles killed Donovan that night, he doesn't know that that information is important, so he has no reason to mention it.

Anyway, Sheriff's interest is piqued about this, so he tells her to hand him the report, while Clarke continues to ramble nervously. "I mean, obviously Stiles isn't making prank calls to the station--" Sheriff cuts her off and tells her he'll deal with it before adding, "No more bending the rules! For anyone." Um, who was bending the rules earlier? Unless Sheriff is really just talking to himself and projecting it onto Clarke? I don't know, I'm confused. Still, Melissa is clearly pissed about Sheriff's behavior, and rightly so, because she snaps, "Maybe you should learn to bend a little before someone breaks," before slamming the witness statement into his chest and leaving the station. TELL HIM, MAMA! PREACH IT FOREVER! Take it from Braeden, Sheriff-- learning to bend will save your damn life where the supernatural is concerned, especially when you're human and messing with forces you can't hope to understand.

Time to check back in with the rest of the pack! Corey and Scott both have their eyes closed, and Scott's keep scrunching up as he struggles to process whatever he's seeing. After a moment, Theo, Malia and Stiles rush upstairs to join them; their eyes widen in alarm when they see what Scott is doing, and Lydia throws an arm out to keep them from fully walking into the room with instructions to not get too close to Scott and Corey. When Theo asks what Scott is doing, Lydia explains the memory-sharing thing. "Tapping into Corey's memories. It's usually something only Alphas do." I'm guessing she's thinking about Peter, who manages to be able to do it despite having only been an Alpha for like a month before he died and was resurrected as a Beta. Also, where the fuck has Peter been? I don't actually care about him, but if the Desert Wolf is going to be going after Malia, then I'd be happy to see him back to help protect his only child (that we know of, that is). Anyway, Theo asks if it's as dangerous as it looks, but Stiles-- who, if you recall, has had Scott's claws in his spine, just like Lydia has-- figures it's probably even worse than that. "Does anyone know if it's working?" Mason asks warily, but nobody seems to have any answers for that.

I'm honestly really curious about the way this Alpha memory-sharing/stealing thing works. Like, how do they find the specific memories that they're looking for? Is it all just about focusing on what you want to know and letting it come to you, or is there some sifting that needs to happen to find what you need? And with the memory stealing thing (which is obviously not what Scott's doing, but it's still a related ability), like what Talia did to Peter, and what the Alpha Pack did to Isaac-- do you have to take every memory individually, or can you just think of a specific subject and remove all of the memories associated with it? WRITE A DAMN TEEN WOLF CODEX ALREADY, SHOW!

Have any of you read The Shadowhunter Chronicles YA novel series by Cassandra Clare (which includes the six-part series The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices trilogy, The Bane Chronicles collection of short stories, the Tales from Shadowhunter Academy collection of short stories, and the upcoming trilogies The Dark Artifices and The Last Hours)? It's a shared universe collection of novels that spans the time between 1234 and 2012, with focuses on the 1870s England and 2007 New York, but it also has its own book called The Shadowhunter's Codex, which is not only a real sort of field-manual for new demon hunters that is actually read by the characters within, but it's its own real book that those of us unfortunate enough to live in the real world can read as well, and it's is such an amazing way to delve into the mythology of her novels. So now I just want every fantasy/supernatural series to do the same. Like, how many of you Harry Potter fans wish that Hogwarts, A History was a real book? It's the same thing in this case-- I want a book like the Argent Bestiary that was released at the 2014 Comic-Con and in the Season 4 DVD set that goes into all of the minutiae of this series! GIVE IT TO ME, JEFF.

But, I digress (for like the bazillionth time, at this point)! Let me stop shilling one of my favorite YA novel series and get back to the story. So, Scott's face is scrunched up in concentration as he tries to focus on Corey's memories, and after a moment, we finally get to see what Scott is seeing in Corey's mind's eye. It starts back at Beacon Hills Memorial Hospital, presumably after Scott and Kira talked to him in "Condition Terminal," when Scott took his pain. The Dread Doctors go into Corey's room and each grab him by the arm as they start to drag his barely-conscious body through the hallway. Despite the fact that he's clearly being kidnapped by who Price Peterson hilariously refers to as the "Steampunk Cenobites," none of the actual real doctors, nurses, or orderlies in the halls or the nurse's station seem to notice anything is amiss. Stellar work as usual, BHMH employees!

So, do the Doctors have the ability to make themselves/the people they touch invisible? Or are they just actively making anyone in the vicinity forget that they see them as they're seeing them? I just have so many questions! The next thing we know, we're seeing one of the scenes from this season's new opening credits, where the camera zooms down a hallway whose walls are lined with big white pipes while Corey, who is hanging limply from where each of the Dread Doctors are grabbing his arms, is dragged toward their creepy dungeon lab. After a moment, Corey starts to become more aware of just what is happening to him and starts looking around to try to figure out where the fuck he is and what is going on. The Surgeon, with his golden monocle flipped up, just gives Corey a blank look before they finally make it to the entrance to the lab. Naturally, Corey starts to freak out when he realizes that this most definitely isn't going to end well for him and struggles to dig his loafer-clad-heels into the ground to get some leverage so he can try to fight back, but we all know how strong the Doctors are, so it barely even slows them down. Once inside the main room of the lab, he catches a glimpse of the big tank with the floating body in it, whose eyes blink open in the most terrifying fashion and causes Corey to become so terrified that he screams at the top of his lungs.

That scream is ultimately what startles Scott out of the memory-sharing procedure, and his clawed hand almost flies out of Corey's neck of its own accord as both Scott and Corey get woozy and about fall onto the floor, much like Peter and Isaac did when the latter raided the former's mind allllllll the way back in "Chaos Rising." Had it not been for Stiles catching the former and Lydia/Mason catching the latter, the two definitely would have, so go team for your quick reflexes, because that was smooth as hell. Okay, before we continue, I have to ask-- did the Doctors take interest in Corey because he had been attacked by their chimera Lucas and had survived it (thanks, in part, to Scott taking his pain so his body would be functional enough to recover), or have they been experimenting on him since before then, like the others? I forget, did we get word that he was a genetic chimera? I NEED TO KNOW MORE OF THIS KID'S BACKSTORY.

Before Scott can even begin to process what he saw during the memory-sharing, he gasps out, "Is he okay?" to Stiles, so even though invading Corey's mind without his consent wasn't the nicest or morally righteous thing for him to do, he does, at least, give a shit what happens to their newest chimera. Corey, who is still recovering as well, demands to know what the fuck Scott just did to him, but Scott just assures him that he'll be okay while he leans against his desk and tries to catch his breath. Corey's hand is pressed against the back of his neck, and when he removes it, he sees that there's blood on his fingers and understandably starts to freak out even more, but Scott is just running on the fumes of the last bit of sleep he got days ago, plus the insecurity and self-loathing that is increasing exponentially at this point, so he sharply insists that Corey will be fine.

Stiles is pretty much flabbergasted at his best friend and brother's uncharacteristic behavior, as are the rest of the members of the pack and their allies, which drives Scott's aforementioned insecurity, self-loathing, and fear for Liam and Hayden into overdrive. "He'll be fine!" Scott repeats in frustration, which gives everyone in the room pause, because just like Scott's little outburst in "Strange Frequencies," nobody has really heard him lose his temper like that before in all the time they've known him. And, just like the first time, the expression on Scott's face immediately indicates that he regrets his tone of voice, but he doesn't have time to apologize because he's too busy drawing a rough sketch of what he remembers of the hallway from Corey's memories. "Listen-- I think it worked," Scott explains quickly as he continues to draw on a small piece of paper. "There were tunnels, pipes along the walls... There were these huge blue pipes at the entrance, two on both sides."

Stiles recognizes this description, and once he takes a look at the general outline Scott has mapped out, he realizes that Scott is talking about one of the tunnels in which he used to skateboard as a kid. "Remember? My dad caught me one time and told me to never go back?" To be completely honest, I'm having a really hard time imagining Stiles skateboarding, because he's wayyyy too flaily to be good at it-- I would know, since I am also much too flaily to be a skateboarder, much to the chagrin of my skater friends who spent countless hours trying to teach me, to no avail. Anyway, Lydia's own memories have been triggered as well by this discussion, and she explains, for our benefit, that the tunnel in question is apparently the water treatment plant, because of course it is-- first we had Kate slumming it in the sewers to hide out from all our heroes, and now we have the Dread Doctors doing their creepy experiments underneath the treatment plant itself. Scott, temporarily heartened by this clue, gets his determined glint in his eyes again and states, "That's where they are. That's where we'll find Liam and Hayden." 

We then cut over to our favorite lil puppies in love, who both lost consciousness after being shot up with mercury or whatever and were moved to a different, smaller room that has concrete floors and walls while they were out. The room is full of huge water (or some other fluid) tanks that are painted white and yellowing with age lining one wall, with the other wall covered in gauges with little clock-hands pointing to various numbers as it keeps up with whatever fluids are in those tanks. The other two walls of the room are actually two sets of double-sliding doors made with chain-link fencing-- one doorway leads outside, while the other heads deeper into the basement. Liam wakes up first, and it takes him a moment to get his bearings before he is able to roll over to find Hayden asleep on her side next to him and gently shake her until she opens her eyes.

Once she's awake, she takes a quick look around the room before glancing down at her side and gingerly lifting her shirt to reveal that her wounds are still swollen and leaking black blood, causing her to whimper in pain. "Where are we?" Hayden asks weakly, but Liam has no idea either, so he grunts and uses all of his energy to pull himself onto his feet so he can investigate. He manages to make it to the set of doors that open to the outside and looks out at the surrounding environment for a moment before reaching out to break the doors open. However, since nothing is ever that easy on Teen Wolf, he finds out the hard way that the doors are so heavily electrified that just the briefest contact throws Liam backwards so far that his back ends up slamming against the ground right next to where Hayden has herself propped up on her elbows. Just as Liam groans in pain and tries to pick himself up, both he and Hayden are startled by the sound of weak laughter coming from behind them. It's a pallid, dark-haired teenage boy who looks both exhausted and defeated as he takes in his new cellmates. "Sorry," the young boy says sheepishly as they turn around to see who the hell they're dealing with now. "I probably should have warned you."

As you can probably imagine, Liam and Hayden aren't very comforted by his presence, so when Liam asks him who he is, he jumps in to assure them that he isn't a threat to them. "My name's Zach," the boy replies, as he crawls toward them so he can see them better. "And I think the better question is... What am I?" This does nothing to make them any less suspicious of him, so Zach goes on to say that he's one of the Dread Doctors' experiments, just like them. I'm seriously worried about Hayden, because the last thing I want is for something bad to happen to her, but the fact that Liam is now included in the "experiments" group is seriously worrisome to me on a whole new level. STOP MESSING WITH OUR SMOL WOLF PRINCE, YOU GUYS. Anyway, after a moment, Zach gets an idea, and starts crawling even closer to his new acquaintances. "Hey, maybe you could help me with something," he begins. "The guys in the masks... they took something off my back. I don't know what it was, but I can feel part of it still there." Liam seems pretty disgusted by the thought of seeing it, but he still asks him if he wants them to look, so when Zach, eager to figure out what's up with him, asks in return if it would be okay, Liam and Hayden give each other a significant look before agreeing to help him out.

Zach sighs in relief and turns his back to them as he lifts the back of his shirt over his shoulders, causing Liam and Hayden's eyes to bug out of their heads when they see what he's talking about. When the camera finally turns so we can see it from their perspective, it's revealed that Zach has two little pink nubs coming out of his back between his shoulder blades, and after a moment, they start fluttering back and forth, indicating that he totally has/had wings that the Doctors seem to have chopped off! WHAT THE FUCK? I really wish we were learning more about the different creatures that make up all these chimeras, you know? Like, we learned that Belasko was a werewolf/garuda hybrid, Tracy was a werewolf/kanima hybrid, Donovan was a wendigo/lamprey hybrid, and Lucas was a werewolf/scorpion hybrid, but after that, we have no idea. Josh was presumably a werewolf and a creature that fed on electricity, and Hayden is definitely part werewolf, but we don't know what else she is. Now, we've got this winged Zach, and have no idea what supernatural he got them from, nor do we know what other creature he is. And all we know about Corey is that he heals quickly. GIVE US MORE MYTHOLOGY, JEFF. ANSWER SOME DAMN QUESTIONS.

Meanwhile, back at the McCall house, Scott is about ready to rush out the door while Stiles, Mason, Lydia, Theo, and Corey follow behind him. Stiles begs Scott to slow down and think for a moment before insisting that Mason shouldn't be going, but Mason wholeheartedly disagrees before Scott can react. "Liam's my best friend!" he argues loudly. "I'm going!" Stiles reminds our favorite McCall pack fanboy that he doesn't have "super-wolf powers," but Scott points out that if Stiles isn't going, then he's going to need all the help he can get. "No, I'm coming!" Stiles replies with a frustrated groan. "Just as soon as I talk to my dad. They're moving the body, and he wants to make sure that this time, no one steals it." Scott is understandably skeptical about how the fuck they're going to manage to do that, and Stiles is just as optimistic-- and by "optimistic," I mean not at all-- considering that whoever is stealing the bodies was strong enough to flip his ancient-ass Jeep over onto its hood. So, this is confirmation that Jordan most certainly has super-strength, yeah? It must be something he has to somewhat consciously tap into-- if it was a passive ability, like the one bitten werewolves get, I'm sure he would have noticed that he had it way sooner.

Anyway, Malia suggests that perhaps Theo should with them instead, but judging by the weird look on his face, this goes against whatever ulterior plan he's got going on, so he's like, "Maybe I better stay here... You know, in case the Doctors decide to make a house call for Corey." And all the easier to play the hero once again to gain their trust! Nice save, bruh. Lydia changes the subject back to the task at hand and points out that Stiles is right-- they need to slow down and think about what the fuck they're doing so they don't just rush in with some half-cocked plan. "I am thinking..." Scott replies sadly, gulping nervously before he continues. "About how Liam and Hayden could already be dead."

You can tell Lydia understands where Scott is coming from here, but she's definitely concerned about how un-Scott-like he's asking, and brings up Corey and the fact that Scott could have seriously hurt him. Also true, and a valid point, which Scott totally gets, but if he thinks about that too hard, then he's going to seriously fall apart, and he can't do that until he knows Liam and Hayden are safe, so he just insists that he has to find her before turning and walking out the door. Mason follows right after him, and Stiles, clearly not pleased with this plan, rushes over to Malia and tells her to text him for anything if they need it, making up the now-usual twenty seconds of Stiles/Malia time this episode. Wonderful. As they leave, both Stiles and Lydia look bewildered and not optimistic, but Theo, who is standing behind everyone and can't be seen, just smirks one of his little evil smirks, just so we remember that he's a really bad guy. Oh, Theo.

Just then, we cut over to the hospital, where some understandingly-anxious orderly is pushing a stretcher carrying the body of the red-haired chimera that Kira allegedly killed on in a body bag out of the elevator. Surrounding him are what appears to be Sheriff Stilinski and five of his deputies, each armed with either a rifle or a pistol-grip shotgun and looking very tense as they escort the orderly to the morgue. Once they exit the elevator and head down the hall, a sixth deputy armed with a double-barrel rifle stands guard in front of it to monitor who comes and goes from it. As they make it closer to the morgue, the deputies split up to make sure every point of access is covered-- one stands in front of the pair of swinging doors that leads to the autopsy wing, Clarke is stationed outside the doors leading to the morgue, and in a hilariously ironic twist, a dead-eyed Jordan is in charge of standing in front of the cubby where the body is being held prior to the autopsy. BAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Oh, Sheriff, if only you knew that your favorite deputy was the one unconsciously stealing the bodies.

Over at the Dread Doctors' holding cell, Liam is still desperately trying to find a way out of the hellhole where they're currently imprisoned, but when Liam gently touches the tip of his index finger against one of the knots in the chain-link fence, a blue bolt of electricity shoots through Liam's body, and he groans loudly in pain. Of course, awkward little Zach just keeps giggling at him. and Liam and Hayden are understandably not thrilled about this reaction, so they both shoot him a look to communicate it. Zach just sighs and defends his (admittedly tactless) reactions to their desperation to get out of there by reminding them that there's no way they're getting out. Hayden tells him he could at least try to be optimistic, but Zach has been there long enough to know better than to bother with hope of any kind. "It's kinda hard when you watch three people get dragged out of here screaming," he explains, much to Liam and Hayden's horror. When Liam asks what happened to them, Zach says that all the Doctors would say about them was that they were "failures."

"First, you forget-- you don't know who you are, or what you're doing. Then, you get violent. I watched two of them almost kill each other." He looks over at Hayden, who is still pressing down on the wound on her side that is still bleeding black blood, and adds, "One of them had a nasty looking cut, just like that." Hayden visibly starts to panic, but Zach assures her that black blood is totally fine-- it's when you start bleeding silver that the Doctors know you're really a failure and subsequently take you out. Liam realizes that the silver stuff is, in fact, mercury, which Zach confirms before Liam asks how many more failures there are supposed to be. "Who knows?" Zach replies bitterly. "But doesn't it make you wonder what the 'success' is going to look like? I mean, what are we turning into? Something with claws and fangs?" Liam clenches his teeth nervously before adding, "Something with wings?" Personally, I'm going with Hayden's prediction, which is that it's something worse than any of those things, which seems to be the most likely. When it comes to Teen Wolf, it's always when you're, like, "This is literally the worst thing that can happen, and nothing else can top it," and then Jeff Davis is like, "LOL, CHALLENGE ACCEPTED." I've got more to say about what we just learned about chimera failures and how they've fit with the characteristics of the chimeras we've met so far, but I'm going to get into that more in the notes because this recap is already too long as it is.

Malia apparently ended up getting her driver's license after all-- or else is totally fine with driving illegally-- because she has just pulled her car into the water treatment plant's parking lot before she, Scott, and Mason get out and rush inside. They make it into this hallway that looks like a catwalk with a perforated metal floor that allows them to see there are multiple levels with multiple different branches of hallways to search, and it's clear that their attempts to find their captured amigos is going to be daunting as hell. Malia walks to the end of the hall and starts yelling out for Liam, and after a moment, Mason asks Scott if he can get a scent, but Scott can't catch anything thanks to all of the chemicals. That's probably part of the Dread Doctors' motivation for putting their lab there, let's be real. Anyway, Mason definitely isn't reassured by the size of the area they're going to have to search and admits it's likely going to take them a while to find wherever Liam and Hayden have been stashed, so they all sigh in frustration before the three get to work.

Meanwhile, Stiles has just arrived at the hospital and is walking down the hallway while he talks to yet another mechanic about poor old Roscoe. "You tell me, man. You're the mechanic," Stiles snaps in frustration. "If the gas tank didn't rupture, and nothing electrical was burned, then how did the fire start?" As it turns out, Stiles, it started from your favorite deputy Jordan, who is a fire critter who can burst his entire body into flames! Unfortunately, the mechanic doesn't know that, and neither does Stiles, since he hasn't had the time or inclination to check the security video he was so eager to set up, so the mechanic decides his final answer is "spontaneous combustion." Seriously, that's what he said. And Stiles was so appalled that he prepares to chew the poor guy's head off until his very, very, very unhappy father shows up and takes the phone from him before hanging up on the guy. Rude, to be honest! What is your deal, Sheriff??? When he angrily asks his son what the fuck he thinks he's doing there, Stiles gets straight to the point-- "Dad, you gotta leave the body, okay? Leave it, and let whoever wants to take it just take it. Trust me."

Honestly, that's not a bad idea whatsoever, considering how much Jordan's fugue-state body-snatching can get violent toward those who get in his way, but Sheriff has been bossed around way too many times today as it is, and so he's not going to listen to his mouthy teenager of a son do the same, even if he knows deep down that Stiles is actually right about this. It's really not that surprising at all, because what grown man wants to hear his kid essentially say "You are in way over your head and there is no way you can actually succeed in what you're trying to do, so you need to give up and let me and my friends handle it?" If it were me in Stiles' position and my dad in Sheriff's, he would probably act very similarly to how Sheriff is acting now, which I think is why this whole Sheriff-thing is really pissing me off in this episode, because while I fully understand why he's doing what he's doing, he's still being so stubborn, obstinate, short-sighted, and is generally just coming up with terrible plans, so it's still infuriating as hell, even if it is a legitimate reaction to what is happening.

"I'm doing my job, Stiles," Sheriff barks as he turns his back to Stiles and heads for the elevator, but fortunately, Stiles isn't exactly eager to let him go without calling him out on his control-freak behavior. "Yeah, you've been real busy..." Stiles retorts. "Arresting people you know are innocent." TELL HIM, STILES! TELL HIM GOOD! Legend has it that every time someone calls Sheriff out on his asshole-ish behavior, an angel gets its wings. And, of course, Sheriff knows his very persistent son is totally right about this, so his only recourse is to do what he always does when Stiles has a good point that he doesn't want to acknowledge-- he orders him to go home, and insists that this topic is no longer up for debate. Just to spite him, Stiles insists that he's not leaving before he then slips into the elevator before the doors close and stands next to his dear old dad, shooting him some serious side-eye as he does so.

Of course, just then, Sheriff sees the ID badge on one of the nurses in the elevator with them and remembers his conversation with Clarke earlier about the "prank call" at the high school and decides to do some digging. "You know, Clarke mentioned something about, uh, key cards for the library. Do you all have after-hours access?" Fortunately for Stiles, he's a good actor and his dad is not a werewolf, because though Stiles maintains a cool exterior, you know his heart must be pounding a million times a minute until he replies, "Yeah. Yeah, we do. I'd show you mine, but I lost it a couple weeks ago." Smooth, dude! Of course, this dishonesty on Stiles' part is sooooo going to get everyone in deep shit sooner rather than later, but his lie-telling skills are still top-notch and very impressive, if I'm being honest here. Even still, Sheriff is definitely suspicious, since he said it himself that he hasn't been able to trust a word Stiles has said since he learned how to speak, but he doesn't seem to be able to find anything untrustworthy in this statement, so he just drops it for now.

Over at the Yukimura's house, Kira is sitting on her bed, where she's trying her best to finish reading the Dread Doctors book. Just like before, it's clear that she's just not getting through it because of her kitsune-induced reading comprehension problems, and after a moment, she groans loudly in frustration and angrily throws the book across the room, where it bounces off the door frame just as Noshiko is passing by. She smiles in mild amusement and backs up so she can come in and pick up the book before she sits down to have another talk with her daughter. "I can't help but notice your frustration," Noshiko begins calmly, as though her daughter weren't just accused of murder, and her husband hadn't just confessed to the crime to get her out of it, but Kira is the opposite of calm right now for completely understandable reasons.

So, Kira begins venting about the fact that she's the only one in the pack who hasn't finished reading it yet, and all of the out-of-control kitsune behavior on her part started with the Dread Doctors' arrival. Oh, girl, you have no idea just how right you are about this. She sighs again in frustration, but Noshiko just smiles sympathetically before replying, "If it's the language that's confusing the fox... maybe you should stop trying to understand it?" Naturally, Kira is like, "Uh, what now?" but Noshiko insists that if the story itself is confusing her inner fox, then she needs to try not reading the story by instead reading the book backwards. Interesting thought, which, of course, ends up working, but I'm not sure what kind of kitsune magic managed to make that work. Noshiko's always got the answers, though, because she's a badass and I love that about her. I'm guessing nearly nine hundred years of life gives you some pretty good insight into just about everything.

Back at the Dread Doctors holding cell, Liam and Hayden are sitting side-by-side in front of one of the support beams while Zach is seated by the back wall. Suddenly, they're all startled by the few fluorescent lights down in the basement flickering around, and Zach immediately knows that the Doctors are coming back. Of course, that's when mercury starts to drip from his nose, and he realizes that chances are, they're coming for him, and wastes no time struggling to get away from them. Unfortunately for him, the Doctors are strong as fuck, and he's weakened from all the experimentation and the general failure of his transformation into a chimera, so it's not difficult for them to grab him by the arms and drag him kicking and screaming out of the room. "No! Stop!" he shouts at the top of his lungs, before turning to the others and shouting, "Help me! Help me! No! No, wait!" It's clear that Liam and Hayden, who are trying their best to stand to their feet, want to try to help him out, but they're still weak as well after having gods know what done to them, so they're powerless to stop their newest acquaintance from being nabbed and presumably killed. Welp, it was nice knowing you, Zachy boy.

Meanwhile, Scott, Malia, and Mason have all met back up after splitting up and trying to find Hayden and Liam by shouting their names every so often and waiting for a response, with no success whatsoever. By the time they've reunited, Scott is panting pretty heavily as he explains that they need to make sure that they're not covering the same area over and over again, since this water treatment plant looks ridiculously big and difficult to navigate. Mason takes notice of Scott's labored breathing and gently asks, "You need your inhaler, don't you?" The fact that Scott has seemingly developed asthma again despite being a True Alpha werewolf with a regenerative healing factor and an immunity from pretty much all human illnesses and diseases is clearly something that is only increasing the huge amounts of insecurity and self-doubt he's already feeling right now, so he doesn't say anything.

In the silence, Scott suddenly hears something and tells them all to quiet down so they can hear it better. After Scott and Malia strain their hearing to figure out what it is, it's clear that they;re hearing the weird, loud buzzing noise that is pretty characteristic of the Dread Doctors, but Malia believes that it's just the electricity powering the lights. Nope! It's likely the Dread Doctors returning to the basement with Zach, right? But, since Scott is still doubting every single move he's had to make all season, he takes Malia's word for it, despite the fact that he obviously believes something is up. After a moment, Scott looks more defeated than he's looked all episode, but he still musters up all the determination he has and tells them to follow him.

Time to catch up with the rest of the kids, yeah? At the McCall house, Corey is sitting down on the couch in the living room while Lydia uses a washcloth to wipe all the blood from the back of his neck, revealing a smooth, unblemished patch of skin underneath. "It healed, didn't it?" Corey asks exhaustedly, and when Lydia sighs and replies that yes, it has completely healed, the gravity of everything that has just happened to him over the last week or so completely overwhelms him, and he launches himself to his feet and heads for the front door. "Okay, then," he snits sarcastically as he turns to walk away. "It's been fun. Especially the part where a werewolf forced his way into my brain with his claws." Yeah, I can see how that would be terrifying as hell. Also, the supernatural world of Beacon Hills really is the worst-kept secret ever now, right? How many more people are they going to be forced to tell before the rest of the town finally figures it out? There have been wayyyyy too many suspicious deaths, murders/ritual sacrifices, kidnappings, and grotesque human experimentation in this town for no one to be skeptical of what they've been told.

Anyway, Theo insists that leaving isn't a very good idea, and when Corey ignores him in favor of getting the hell out of there, Theo resorts to straight-up lying to try to get him to stay, because he needs a legitimate excuse to explain how he knows where Liam and Hayden are so he can rescue them, thus making himself the hero and taking one step closer to being accepted by the pack. "You know, Lydia's a banshee," he begins. "It means she can tell when someone's close to death." He turns to Lydia and asks her what will happen if Corey walks out that door, and though Lydia's clearly wary about lying to him, she decides to half-heartedly play along. "...It's bad?" Lydia replies unconvincingly. "Very bad." Even still, Corey just scoffs and argues that he'd rather take his chances, so Theo pulls out the last card he has to try to get the info they need. "Then give us a better chance at finding our friends!" Theo replies loudly. "What else did you see?" Corey just sighs and rolls his eyes, like he can't believe he's been harassed like this, but Theo isn't giving up. "Come on, Corey! There had to be something else!"

Corey insists that he remembered being in the hospital, and then they took him out of his room and into the tunnels, just like he told them, and that's all he remembers, but like I said before, Theo can't just run off to where Liam and Hayden are and save them unless he has a legitimate reason to know that they were there in the first place, otherwise the others will know something shady is going on with him. So, Theo pleads, "Well, there has to be more. Think, Corey, for one minute, just... just think." Corey sighs and closes his eyes for a moment while he does what he's told and sifts through all of his memories before he's finally hit with a dawning realization, Stiles-style.
COREY: "There was a basement!"
THEO: [eagerly] "Where? Like, in a building?"
COREY: "A house. It was old, covered in dust, and... there was a broken stone wall with a large hole in it, like a bomb went off."
THEO: [pretends to have a realization] "Lydia, the werewolf with the talons, the one who attacked Scott-- didn't Parrish say that he smashed through the wall of a basement? Wasn't it something like that?"
LYDIA: [sighs] "No... it was exactly that."
OH SHIT, OH SHIT, OH SHIT! So, that abandoned house must be relatively close to the water treatment plant, if the Doctors are taking their test subjects back and forth, right? And that makes sense as to why Belasko just happened to be hanging around in the basement of the abandoned house where Jordan had been sent to investigate the noise complaint in "Creatures of the Night"-- the noises they were hearing were probably pained groaning and terrified screams coming from all the previous chimeras who were thrown down there. My first question is, how did the Doctors know that anyone would be coming to the abandoned house where Belasko was being held in the first place, let alone a police officer with still-undefined powers like Parrish?

Kathleen and I have been speculating whether or not the Doctors have some kind of clairvoyant or precognitive abilities to be able to know when things are happening despite not being there, but I don't know, we haven't had any confirmation about it. Secondly, if Belasko's mission was to "remove the obstacles," whatever that means, then why would he be in the basement at all instead of looking for Scott like he was supposed to? And thirdly, how does Theo know about what happened with Parrish? As far as we know, they've never met, and we haven't seen anyone talk about him to Theo, and since everyone has been hiding everything from each other, it just seems weird that they would be filling Theo in on everything when they can barely tell each other what they know. I don't know, I'm probably not even supposed to be asking these questions, but I'm just so damn curious! TOO MANY UNKNOWNS!

We then return to the Yukimura's house, where the sun is setting and giving off a red glow while Kira does as her mother suggested and reads the Dread Doctors book backwards. Before we get into what happens next, I feel compelled to point out that Kira's bedroom decor has been changed a lot since we first saw it in Season 3B's "Galvanize"-- back then, it was themed around teal and royal purple colors, with lots of cute anime art on the walls and generally looking like the bedroom of a stereotypical Japanese/Korean-American teenage girl. Now, however, the room has a soft pink/lilac/orchid purple color scheme with very minimal decorations. The most notable art on the wall is a framed drawing of a dragonfly, which has all kinds of meta connotations that I'll be getting into in the notes. Regardless, I'm wondering if the change is relevant, or if they just messed around with the sets or something. Anyway, moving on! Kira slowly flips through the pages as she reads the book just inches away from her face, and we get a glimpse at a couple more excerpts on the pages, which I have lovingly transcribed again for your convenience. The first page is below:
"The explosion tore the catwalk apart in a fiery cloud. Metal buckled, several support struts falling away. Aaron and Judy collapsed on the metal grating. 
'Are you okay?' Judy asked her friend. 
'I think...' Aaron trailed off as a keening filled the air. Looking back, Judy and Aaron [...] as the final support struts cracked. 
'Uh, oh,' Judy murmured just before the support struts shattered and the catwalk fell away beneath them. Judy gripped Aaron's arm as the catwalk swung like a giant pendulum..."
Then we have the second page here:
"... gave it a sickening twist. He [sic] legs stopped kicking and hung loosely beneath him. 
With a sob in her throat, Judy watched the Surgeon toss Aaron off the catwalk and into the dark water below. Then, the Surgeon's bright eyes fell on her. Judy recoiled, her hand falling on the rusted wrench. 
Leaning forward, the Surgeon raised a gloved hand, but Judy struck out with the wrench. The large tool cracked against the side of the Surgeon's mask. He stumbled back and Judy struck him again and again. 
Falling backwards, the Surgeon collapsed in the elevator. The wire-walled box creaked and groaned after years of neglect and exposure to the elements. The cable holding the elevator in place vibrated under the [...]"

So Stiles is Judy in this scenario, since she has a wrench just like he does! And this story is quite familiar-sounding if you've seen the next episode, "Lies of Omission," so I think Theo used it for material, but I don't want to say any more about it in case there are readers who haven't seen the episode yet. Also, I would be remiss if I didn't point out that they clearly did not write the entire book, because if you're a loser like me and watch the scene frame-by-frame to transcribe the pages, you can see that the same page is printed twice, so they clearly just wrote a handful of pages that they could show to eagle-eyed viewers, meta writers and crazed, neurotic recap bloggers Anyway, Kira's eyes widen in alarm as she suddenly remembers what the Dread Doctors did to her. However, unlike Lydia, Stiles, and Scott, who were transported into their old memories and saw them through the eyes of their present-day selves, Kira's memory is really more like a flashback, where she experiences everything through the eyes of her past-self.

So, we flash back to "Creatures of the Night," where Kira, Noshiko, and Ken are sitting in the family's red Toyota in stand-still traffic on Route 115, watching as people in the cars ahead of them open their doors and step outside to see just what the hold-up is. "Authorities are still trying to move the overturned tractor trailer," an announcer on the 105.1 radio station explains to everyone listening, "So, if you're anywhere near 115, you might wanna try an alternative route. Service streets are still jammed..." Suddenly, the radio gets all static-y, and the tell-tale buzzing/skittering noise that accompanies the Dread Doctors arrival is heard, though neither Noshiko nor Ken seem to hear or see them. Kira's eyes widen in alarm when she sees them approaching the car, but forever reason, it's almost like she's paralyzed-- she's so dazed by everything that she can only stare in terror as they telekinetically open the back door of the car (Another power???) and pull Kira out by the arms. The Geneticist and the Pathologist pin her down on the hood of the car by the arms, while both of her parents just stare straight ahead, as though her daughter weren't about to be tortured by unscrupulous doctors wielding ancient medical equipment.

Even still, Kira isn't moving or struggling at all, kind of like when Allison had that darkness-induced hallucination in "More Bad Than Good" where she was laying on an autopsy table being cut open by Kate, and could do nothing but just lay immobile and watch in fear. Like Allison, Kira's eyes widen as the Surgeon pulls out this long metal cylinder with a prong in the center and aims it right for Kira's face. NOOOO, I KNOW WHERE THIS IS GOING AND I STILL HATE IT SO MUCH. Kira is clearly terrified, but is powerless against them as they stick the prong right in her damn eye, which somehow summons one of those crazy bolts of lightning that seemed to strike so many times in that episode and directly hits the instrument currently impaling her through the pupil, and Kira, in so much pain and fear that she's finally able to react, begins screaming the most soul-shattering scream I've heard in a long while as her body is overpowered by the lightning and bursts into a flare of bright white light from within herself. HOLY SHIT, WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?

In the present, you can tell by the look on Kira's face that she's absolutely horrified by this recovered memory and is desperately trying to process what they did and how it's affected her actions since then. I don't blame her one tiny bit for being freaked out about this outrageous medical procedure that has been done on her without her consent and has done gods know what to her body and spirit, because WHAT THE FUCK?!?! First of all, the Doctors clearly have some kind of mind-manipulation powers, because like with Corey earlier, they managed to do all of this without anyone-- not even a powerful, centuries old kitsune like Noshiko, who was literally not even a foot away from this while Kira was snatched and pinned to the hood of her car-- noticing any part of what the Dread Doctors did. Secondly, I have the feeling the fact that Theo was also stopped on this very road while this was going down is not a coincidence, either-- when we first watched the premiere, I wondered if there was anything about the little exchange Kira had with Theo regarding cell service while they were stopped in traffic. At first, I thought maybe it was just meant to introduce us to the character who was eventually going to get involved with our heroes, but now I'm wondering if maybe Theo knew who she was from the jump and had more to do with what the Doctors did than we know. I'll get into that more in the notes, though.

But, most of all, I'm curious as to why the Doctors did this to Kira in the first place? Was the lightning a protective instinct on Kira's part, or were the Dread Doctors intending for that to happen? Was this all to overpower her as part of their ploy to get into Eichen House? Do they have more plans for her? Why did they do this to her when she's not a genetic chimera that we know of? Because of that point, it now seems like there are roughly three groups of people with some kind of connection to the Dread Doctors-- 1) the genetic chimeras, who then became man-made supernatural chimeras after being test subjects (I'm gonna go ahead and assume all of the hybrids we've met so hard fall into this category, so--Belasko, Tracy Stewart, Donovan Donati, Lucas, Josh Diaz, Hayden Romero, Corey, and the redhead that Kira may or may not have killed),  2) those who have had medical procedures/tests done to them but who aren't genetic chimeras, as far as we know (I think Kira and Liam definitely fit into this group-- the former due to the lightning/eye procedure, and the latter due to the injection and the fluid transfusion--, and Scott probably does too (since he was shocked in the chest with electromagnetic powers that seem to be making his asthma worse/keeping him from healing properly), with the possibility that Lydia, Malia, and/or Stiles may also find themselves in this group too), and finally, 3) and those characters who seem to have links to the Dread Doctors but whose histories are undefined or unconfirmed (I'm thinking Theo is definitely in this group, along with Dr. Valack and the Desert Wolf. Others who may potentially have a connection to them are Claudia Stilinski and/or Lorraine Martin, but I will get into that more later.) Does that sound about right? I want to go into this in more detail in a bit, but this thing is already way too long as it is without clogging it up more with my theories. Stay tuned!

Anyway, back at the hospital, Stiles has stayed true to his promise to his dad by refusing to leave while half the department stands guard to make sure no one steals the bodies. He's sitting in a seat in the lobby, where he's very conspicuously staring at his library keycard, which has the name "M. STILINSKI" on it. Can I confess a secret, very unpopular opinion? Okay, here goes-- I don't really care what Stiles' name is anymore? Like, I love Stiles, and I'm curious, I guess, but on the list of questions I want answered about this show and it's story lines (especially this season's story lines), "What is Stiles' real name?" isn't even on the top 25. There are way more things that I am desperate to know right now, like what kind of creature Jordan is, why Scott's asthma is back, what is up with Kira's fox spirit, why the Desert Wolf is obsessed with killing Malia, where the hell Rafael McCall, Chris Argent, Derek Hale, and Peter Hale ran off to and why they're not here (I mean, I know why their actors aren't here, but I want to know where the characters are!)

Okay, so Stiles stares at the card for a long moment before anxiously crushing it in his shaking hand, balling it into a fist so he can eventually drop it into the nearby trash can. SERIOUSLY? Your dad is lurking around here, kid, why would you drop it in a place where he could potentially find it? BAD IDEA, BUDDY. You should have dropped it in the dumpster or something. These kids need to watch more crime procedurals so they can learn how to be better criminals, to be honest. Meanwhile, Sheriff is patrolling around the halls and uses his radio to check in downstairs with the deputies. Parrish reports back that everything is clear and that nothing has happened as of yet, which seems to reassure him a little. He walks toward one of the guards and strips off his uniform jacket before throwing it on a nearby seat and nervously stretches his arms while he continues his rounds. Clarke is still guarding the door to the morgue itself, and she looks very, very anxious, judging by the thin film of sweat on her face. Of course, that could just be the temperature of the floor, since Sheriff goes over to Clarke to relieve her of her post so she can go talk to management about turning up the air conditioning, since they're all sweating to death and morgues should probably be much cooler than it is right now.

Hmmmm, I wonder what could be causing all that heat? I'm sure it has nothing to do with the deputy they stationed inside the morgue, right? Sigh. Of course, Clarke doesn't even get the chance to move when they all hear a creaking noise above their heads, like something is applying too much pressure to the ceiling above them. Sheriff, Clarke, and the two other deputies at that corner all get the same very uneasy look on their faces as they stare fearfully upward and find that the fire sprinklers, which have condensation building up on the metal, seem to be buckling under some kind of weight. Sheriff realizes what's about to happen about a split second before the sprinkler pops out, giving him just enough time to tackle the deputy under it and get him out of the way before it (and the pipes attached to it) break. However, instead instead of water pouring out of the now fractured pipes, it's pure steam, as though someone had vaporized all of the water inside! HOLY SHIT!

As the hallway fills with fog, Sheriff orders all of his men to get back, which, of course, is exactly what our favorite corpse-thief's supernatural spirit wanted to happen-- split up all the people guarding the bodies so he can easily snatch the ginger chimera and get the hell out of there. The Sheriff and his deputies all start looking around with their guns raised, but after a moment, one of the men has his gun snatched by a shadowy figure in the fog and is subsequently knocked out with it when the thief (who, let's be honest here, we all know is Jordan) slams the butt of it into the man's temple, leaving a plume of black smoke in his wake. The man shouts "NOOO!" as he flies against the room, but between all the steam, smoke, and noises, none of the deputies have no idea what's going on, making it easy for Jordan to take down the other anonymous male deputy and drag him away. Clarke is trying her best to see through the fog, but is completely caught off-guard when a sooty, masculine hand/arm grabs her by the face and pulls her into a nearby alcove. Sheriff is in the midst of following her screams just as Jordan and Clarke disappear, and he starts calling out for them both, not knowing that it was the former who grabbed the latter. UH OH. Should have listened to your son, Sheriff!

Back at the water treatment plant, Scott, Mason, and Malia have just regrouped again after searching another level, and Mason anxiously points out that he's sure they've been down this hall before. Scott, who is at the end of his rope by now and is panting heavily as he tries to catch his breath, defeatedly asks, "What the hell are we doing?" He falls to his knees on the floor, still wheezing pretty hard, as he continues, "We're running up and down this place, up and down tunnels, and there's no way..." His breath hitches, and he swallows thickly before trying to add, "There's no way that we're gonna find..." He starts wheezing and gasping even harder, and Malia, ever the observant one, tells him that he needs his inhaler. Scott can't bring himself to grab it, because he's still trying to keep himself from thinking about how worrisome it is that he needs it in the first place, and in his mind right now, his asthma is linked to his failure as an Alpha, a friend, a human being in general-- the way he sees it, if he has an asthma attack, then he really is at fault for Liam and Hayden being captured, and if he can't find them soon enough, then he'll be at fault for them dying, too.

Once again, Malia barks at Scott to just use his inhaler, and after a moment, Scott gets so winded that he has no choice but to do what she says, and he pulls it out so he can take a deep breath from it. As it starts to take effect, Scott starts to breathe a little easier, but it does nothing to help him stop obsessing over how helpless he feels right now. "This is all my fault," Scott whispers quietly. "We're never going to find them. It's my fault..." Malia looks super sad to hear this from Scott, but has no idea how to help him feel better, but fortunately for all of them, they have Prince Mason to help pick Scott up when literally no one, including himself, will do it. "Scott," Mason begins, as he holds out his hand for Scott to take to pull himself to his feet. "We should keep looking. We should keep trying." Scott looks over at Malia, who is smiling the tiniest but most encouraging smiles, and Scott finally gets the glimmer of hope he needs to get back on his feet and start looking again. Of course, they're so busy trying to get back into the groove that they completely miss an ouroboros symbol affixed to the wall that they pass as they go back onto the catwalk, one that is identical to the one Deaton and Vadim found in the Russian "nuclear site."

YESSS! I will never get over how amazingly helpful Mason has been to the pack since we met him. Seriously, he helped saved Scott, Liam, and Malia's lives in "Perishable" before he even knew what they were! He was super loyal and supportive to Liam when he knew his best friend was hiding things from him, he went out of his way to research everything to make sure that they were as informed as possible, and he's insisted on helping them out on dangerous missions even despite being a human with no superpowers. HE IS SO WONDERFUL AND I ADORE HIM SO MUCH. He is so in the inner circle, I don't care what anyone else says. Besides, Scott has been in desperate need of a pep talk for, like, what, three seasons now? And since the pack is fracturing apart, and everyone is so absorbed in their own shit to know that Scott-- the person they believe to be their fearless leader--is in desperate need of support, and that he can't just give and give and give without getting anything back in return. I will seriously love Mason forever just for boosting Scott's morale this one time.

Over at the abandoned house basement, Liam and Hayden are still sitting side-by-side against one of the walls when the lights in the adjacent hall start to flicker, and they both visibly tense up when they realize that the Dread Doctors are coming back. It seems as though that they have come up with a plan off-screen in case this were to happen, because Liam weakly lifts himself up to his feet so he can pull the even weaker and more injured Hayden up onto hers while she continues to apply pressure to her still-black-bleeding wounds. Once they're up, Liam protectively stands slightly in front of his best girl to ensure that he is the first line of defense, and the two lace their fingers together and grip each other's hands as tightly as they can in anticipation for whatever is about to happen. However, fortunately for them, it's not the Dread Doctors at all, it's Theo, who is calling out Liam and Hayden's name and seems relieved to see them still alive once he finds them in the room. However, he reaches straight for the fence to break it open, and Liam has no time to warn him not to touch it before Theo gets a serious shock that is so strong it throws him backwards and onto the cement floor behind him.

Okay, two observations that are more-or-less related-- first off, if it wasn't the Dread Doctors coming, then why were the lights flashing? Did Theo do that, or are the Doctors there out of sight or something? And secondly, Theo had to know that the fence was electrified, right? If he's working with the Doctors and is mostly filled in on everything they know, it feels like he'd have to have been told about that beforehand, wouldn't you think? Especially since the Doctors surely know what Theo is doing, since it has to play a larger role in whatever their plan entails. We've all been theorizing that Theo is one of the Dread Doctors' successful chimeras, and the more we learn and the more I think about it, the more convinced I am that it's the truth. He showed up right around the same time the Dread Doctors seemed to show up, he's supposedly a recently-bitten werewolf, but yet he can still full-shift into an actual wolf as a beta/omega, and he's knowledgeable about everything the Doctors have been doing to the test subjects-- hell, he even witnessed part of the experimentation on both Donovan and Kira. I mean, aside from causing a bunch of drama in the McCall pack, he doesn't seem to have much to offer to the Doctors from what we have been shown, but if he's one of their few successful chimeras, I would guess that would make him pretty valuable to them.

This brings me back to my aforementioned observations-- if he really is a chimera, then he's not just a werewolf, right? He has to have something else in him as well. What if his other power has something to do with electricity, like the Dread Doctors, or Kira? It would explain why the lights flickered when he came downstairs to find them, and why he is ultimately able to break through the electrified fence despite the fact that electricity is supposed to weaken werewolves. For that reason, he'd have to keep those powers a secret to ensure that nobody got suspicious, because you know the pack members would pick up on that shit pretty quickly. So, I'm not convinced that he's just faking being shocked just to further trick everyone into trusting him. This is what Teen Wolf has done to me this season-- it has made me even more paranoid than Stiles is. There is pretty much nothing Theo can do will surprise me at this point, unless he's, like, secretly a good guy or something. But I'm not very hopeful.

Anyway, when we return from the break, Theo is laying flat on his back with his eyes closed while Liam desperately calls out to him and tries to get him to wake up. "Theo? Theo? Theo, are you alright?" Theo grunts in pain for a moment and gingerly rubs the back of his head where it smacked against the cement floor before slowly lifting himself to his feet and assuring them that he's fine, which relieves Liam way more than it should. He asks Theo if he thinks he can go get help, but Theo just replies, "I am the help." That's an interesting choice of words, don't you think? He could have said that he was sent by the pack to come find him, he could have explained that he assumed Scott, Malia, and Mason were looking in the same place, but none of those things would have sown the seeds of discord between all the members of the pack-- we've already seen him trying to lay the foundation for it with both Stiles and Malia regarding Scott, and he already started making it so Scott wouldn't trust Kira, so now his next move is to make Liam think that Scott didn't care enough to come save him himself, which I'm sure will not have any negative consequences, because Scott and Liam's bond is unbreakable, right? RIGHT? (*sobs hysterically*)

So, Theo walks back toward the fence, and both Liam and Hayden back up so that they're pressed against the wall in anticipation for whatever it is he's about to do. Despite the fence still being electrified, he takes a deep breath to prepare himself before he grabs onto the fence with both hands, but this time, he's not thrown backward from the force of the electricity, though we do see him getting shocked with ice-blue sparks from the contact. Instead, his face is screwed up in concentration as he groans and starts to pull the doors apart, finally wolfing-out partially as he roars and breaks the fence open while Liam and Hayden blink and try not to get blinded by the light coming from the now-broken fence. Okay, so there is definitely something up with Theo, yeah? The only werewolf we've seen who was able to withstand that kind of electricity, and that is Scott, who is not only an Alpha, but a True Alpha with an indomitable sense of willpower, so I am still super suspicious that he is some sort of electricity-immune werewolf chimera thingy. Plus, the golden color of his werewolf eyes just looks off, although that might have something to do with the special effects or the lighting or something. What are you guys thinking?

At the hospital, Sheriff and the deputies are all still trying to figure out what the fuck is going on as all the water vapor evaporates and the fire alarms ring throughout the halls. After a moment, a very dead-eyed Jordan goes up to Sheriff, who takes one look at the weird expression on his face and asks what the hell is going on. "I think I saw the suspect," Parrish replies emotionlessly. Uh, yeah, I'd say so, since you see him in the mirror every single day and don't realize it, but okay. Before he can confess who it is, both men hear Stiles' voice calling out for his dad in the adjacent hallway. "Go get your son, Sheriff," Parrish adds, and though Sheriff is clearly freaked out about his weirdo behavior, he's more worried about Stiles, so when Stiles finally makes it to him, Sheriff turns to see just what the hell is going on. "Dad! The body," Stiles says worriedly, reminding him of the entire point of this exercise. So, Sheriff goes into the morgue first with his sidearm aimed in front of him and Stiles following shortly behind him, but as expected, the body has completely vanished from its little cubby. And, to make matters even worse, the inside of the door and the sliding tray where the bodies are laid are covered in soot, as though there was a fire there. OH SHIT. Looks like Jordan got a little ahead of himself and burst into flames before he even got to the Nemeton. Yikes! And, as you can probably guess, Sheriff is pissed that his poorly-executed plan didn't end up working.

"It's too late, too late to be awake / It goes on and on with every breath I take / Grass will grow and hearts will break / It goes on and on with every breath I take"

Now safely rescued, Liam and Hayden are in the backseat of Theo's truck while he drives them back to the McCall's house, and Charlotte OC's "Cut the Rope" plays on the radio. It's a really good song as it is, but it's not only perfect for this Liam/Hayden scene, but it also is the perfect lead-in to the upcoming Scott/Kira scene as well. Anyway, Hayden is still whimpering in pain as she applies pressure to the wound on her side, and Liam, looking worried, asks her if it still hurts, even after all of this time. "Everywhere," Hayden says quietly. "I'm not healing... not like I did before. That means I'm a failure, doesn't it?" 

"Now, I'm running in circles, I'm losing it all / From something to nothing, do the right thing, let me fall / You're pushing me sideways but you won't let go / And I know that you're sorry, but do the right thing/ CUT THE ROPE AND LET ME FALL"

She looks so scared, and Liam is so concerned about her that he doesn't know what to say, so he instead leans over and kisses her. She returns the kiss, and after a moment, you can see blackened veins around Liam's mouth that travel through the blood vessels in his face, and the sudden pain he feels from unconsciously siphoning her pain shocks him enough that he pulls away. "It's gone," Hayden says with an amazed gasp. "The pain's gone! How did you do that?" Liam is completely shocked by this revelation and sheepishly says that he has no idea before he leans back in and kisses her again. Of course, Theo has to spoil the moment by watching them make out in his rear-view mirror and smirking in such a way that you know this is all part of his plans.

"Roses to the flame / My love always turns to blame / And it's never enough, no, no, no, no"

Scott, Malia, and Mason return to the McCall house, looking defeated as hell, only to find that Liam and Hayden are curled up on the couch, fast asleep-- Liam is tucked in the corner with his head thrown over the back of the couch and his right arm around Hayden, who is nestled against his chest. Lydia looks so relieved that everyone is back safe and sound, but if anything, Scott seems to feel worse for not being able to find them himself. As soon as Theo sees Scott, he walks over to him and wraps him into a hug, which Scott only half-heartedly returns. Of course, Malia and Mason are both thrilled and happily hug Theo in turn to thank him for saving their friends, but Scott almost has a suspicious glint in his eye as he watches them. Lydia, acting especially mother-hen-y, smiles at the sight of Liam and Hayden sleeping next to each other and spreads a throw blanket over them to warm them up. Of course, the suspicion Scott feels now will be all but gone next episode, when Theo is the only person actually talking to him or anyone else in the pack, for that matter, but for now, I will take comfort in the fact that at least Scott is aware that something ain't right, here.

"I'm running in circles, I'm losing it all / From something to nothing, do the right thing, let me fall / You're pushing me sideways but you won't let go / And I know you're sorry, but do the right thing / CUT THE ROPE AND LET ME FALL"

After the bittersweet reunion at his house, Scott has stopped over at Kira's, where he finds her in her bedroom, packing up a suitcase with her clothes while the second best song of the evening, "I Found" by Amber Run, plays in the background. Seriously, the first song was perfect for the occasion, but this one is even more applicable to Scott and Kira's relationship. Forgive me for the excessive lyric-quoting, it's just SO GOOD. Anyway, back to the scene-- even though Liam and Hayden are safe, you can tell Scott is still really beating himself up for what happened, both that he even unintentionally allowed them to be taken in the first place and also that he was unable to find them himself. So, this next conversation just hits him even harder when he realizes that the girl he loves is leaving as well.

"I'll use you as a warning sign / That if you talk enough sense, then you'll lose your mind / I'll use you as a focal point / So I don't lose sight of what I want / I've moved further than I thought I could / But I'll miss you more than I thought I would"

KIRA: "It was the night of the traffic jam. I don't know what they did, but they did something."
SCOTT: "Then it's not your fault--"
KIRA: [interrupts him] "We still need to fix it... and I don't think the solution is here."
SCOTT: "What about your dad?"
KIRA: [quietly] "There's no body. They had to let him go."
SCOTT: [desperately] "Kira, I don't want you to leave."
KIRA: "And I don't want to hurt anyone. especially you."
This hits Scott right where it hurts, especially since this is basically a repeat of the conversation Scott had with Stiles outside of Eichen House in "Echo House"-- the parallels between Nogitsune!Stiles and Kitsune!Kira are so strong this season that it's breaking my heart. So, Scott tells her that she won't hurt him, but Kira knows better than to believe it. "Scott, look at me. Look at me with your other eyes and tell me what you see." Scott sighs and takes a step into Kira's bedroom before doing as he's told and flashing his crimson wolf eyes at her, and sure enough, he sees the exact same thing he saw in "A Novel Approach"-- her aura is a literal inferno around her in gold, orange, and almost pinkish flames that make up the huge fox armor around her, and both her own eyes and the eyes of the fox spirit are glowing their usual sunset-orange shade. You can see the light reflecting against his face, which is so devastated looking that you just know he knows what will happen next.

"I found love where it wasn't supposed to be / Right in front of me / Talk some sense to me."

We cut to outside the Yukimura's house, where Noshiko, Ken, and Kira are finishing packing up the car as rain pours down around them. I wonder where they're going? They're not moving, otherwise they'd have way more stuff (and the fandom would be wayyyy more pissed), but they're definitely leaving Beacon Hills, at any rate. Her parents get into the car and leave Kira to say her goodbyes, and the look on her face is so heartbroken as she looks over at her boyfriend, whose face is easily a thousand times more upset. They then share their last kiss before Kira reluctantly breaks apart from him and gets into the car. She watches Scott standing in the pouring rain from the backseat, and they continue to stare at each other as the car drives away; before it's out of sight, the street lights lining the street start to explode in a shower of sparks, one by one, but Scott doesn't even notice or try to move out of the way. SCOTT, BABY! KIRA, BABY! COME BAAAACK. elenagilbertmakeitstopithurts.gif!

"I'll use you as a makeshift gauge / Of how much to give and how much to take / I'll use you as a warning sign/ That if you talk enough sense then you'll lose your mind / I found love where it wasn't supposed to be / Right in front of me / Talk some sense to me."

This is seriously too much for me in so many ways, because you all know how much I love Kira, and Scott/Kira together, so this sort-of breakup before the Yukimuras leave town is just devastating to me. Plus, I still don't understand why she has to leave in the first place, because wouldn't it make sense to stick around where the Dread Doctors are to figure out what happened to her? Unless Noshiko knows of some secret repository of information on them, or a kitsune expert who can help undo whatever it is that they did, it would just make sense for her to stick around to figure it out with the rest of her pack, several of whom have also had terrifying procedures performed on them by the Doctors. UGH, DON'T GO, KIRA! On the other hand, if she's not in Beacon Hills, then she's presumably safe from the Doctors, so at least we shouldn't have to worry about her getting hurt or dying, but still. I don't like this.

Scott somehow made it back to his house, and when Melissa comes home, she finds Scott sitting on the floor in front of his closet, still in the sopping wet clothes he's been wearing since "Strange Frequencies" and twisting Roxie's leather leash around his hands. Okay, seriously, make this stop, because my heart cannot handle this many terrible blows, one after the other after the other. IT'S TOO MUCH FOR ONE FANGIRL TO HANDLE, JEFF! STOP TORTURING THE CHARACTERS AND THE AUDIENCE. Melissa kneels in front of him and gently asks, "Sweetheart, are you okay?" but Scott is most certainly not okay. Not at all. "Something's changed," Scott begins quietly, and when Melissa asks him what he means, he continues on as his eyes fill with tears. "I'm not sure. Something's different... with me and my friends. With all of us. Something's changed... I think it's because of me. And I don't know how to fix it." OUCH OUCH OUCH OUCH. Melissa seems to agree, because when Scott starts to cry, Melissa immediately goes into mother mode and starts rubbing his leg soothingly as she tries to calm him down. Gods, Melissa is such a precious angel, but I'm not sure even she can make Scott feel better at this point. The only thing that can do that is his pack going back to normal and the Dread Doctors leaving town or dying and all of the chimeras ending up being functional members of the supernatural society.

Meanwhile, over at Stiles' house, Lydia and Stiles are in his bedroom when Stiles brings up the bad news-- "It's him. He's the one taking the bodies." He hands her a small piece of burned and sooty metal, which has clearly been engraved with the name "PARRISH" on it. I guess Stiles must have found it in the morgue after the redheaded chimera's body was stolen earlier? Lydia is shocked but not necessarily surprised by this revelation, because she remembers what he told her about his dreams and suddenly puts the pieces together. "Then I think I know where he's taking them." As expected, we see Jordan in all of his naked glory while he does his equivalent of Lydia's banshee death-walkabouts and carries the girl's body toward the Nemeton's stump, where he adds it to the growing number of bodies sprawled around its roots. CAN WE PLEASE JUST FUCKING LEARN WHAT PARRISH IS ALREADY? The suspense is killing me!

Finally, we end this episode where we started-- in Russia, at the "nuclear site" that I'm pretty sure we're supposed to think is Chernobyl or something. Deaton is still in the same room as before, only this time, he's now tied to a chair and is illuminated the by the glow of the flashlight laying on the nearby table, which is pointed right at him. Couldn't he get out of those binds if he really wanted to? I'm pretty sure in Season One's "Heart Monitor," Deaton managed to not only break out of the restraints Derek put him in, but also managed to break out of the trunk of his Camaro. Then again, the Desert Wolf still has her sound-suppressor-enhanced assault rifle in her hands, so he's probably just trying not to get shot at this point. "I heard an interesting rumor, Doctor," she says sweetly as she props her gun over her shoulder. "I hear that my daughter is still alive. You wouldn't happen to know anything about that, would you?" Deaton is nothing if not good at lying, so he keeps on his best poker face and softly replies, "A daughter? I don't know anything about a daughter." YES! PROTECT MALIA, DEATON! That's what an excellent emissary looks like. I can't tell if the Desert Wolf believes him or not, but regardless, she just smirks and replies, "Well, I hope you're telling the truth... because if she is still alive, I'm just gonna have to kill her again."

NOPE NOPE NOPE NOPE NOPE. Killing Malia is not an option. I'd like to see the Desert Wolf try, though, because you know Malia would put up an excellent fight, and Stiles would probably get so pissed he'd channel his inner Void!Stiles and go to town on her ass. Still, I wonder why she wants to kill Malia? Kathleen is sure that the Desert Wolf is actually a successful chimera and she wants Malia dead because she doesn't think any chimera spawn should be allowed to live, and I really like the idea of that, to be honest. The only catch is that we've yet to see Malia exhibit any signs that she's anything other than a werecoyote, since according to the Argent Bestiary, all werecoyotes, regardless of rank, can full-shift into a coyote. Still, maybe the offspring of chimeras aren't actually chimeras, but real supernaturals? Or maybe Peter's werewolf genetics overpowered the chimera-ness? I don't know. Any way you look at it, though, this story line is going to become bananas sooner rather than later, and I'm pretty excited for it, and also very very very scared for Malia.

Next episode: Theo lies his ass off to everyone who will listen to him and fights with the Dread Doctors about keeping Hayden alive a little longer to buy him some time to finish whatever plan he's working. Every member of the pack is still on guard about the Doctors and the chimeras as the bonds between them start to fracture, and Lydia, Stiles, and Jordan try their best to find the Nemeton. Oh, an the Stiles vs. Scott fight that has been anticipated finally goes down, and it is every bit as soul-crushing as you imagined.

NOTES/SPECULATION/QUESTIONS:
-Fashion Reruns: Pretty much everyone is still wearing the clothes they were wearing in "Strange Frequencies," so that pretty much does it for repeats.

-I thought the dragonfly painting on Kira's bedroom wall was an interesting touch, because I don't think we've seen it prior to this episode (please correct me if I'm wrong!) Symbolism-wise, dragonflies are commonly associated with maturity and depth of character, especially regarding change and self-realization-- the kind of change rooted in mental and emotional maturity, which could be playing into the emotional maturity that Kira is developing from her time in the supernatural world and the battles she's had to fight, along with the emotional and physical changes that have come from her gaining a tail in the last season. Dragonflies are also associated with water because of the fact that they scurry across bodies of water, so it represents digging deeper into something and looking beyond the surface to the deeper implications of life.

Another characteristic of the dragonfly is its agility, because they're known for being able to move in all six directions up to speeds of 45 miles per hour, so they're associated with power, poise, and elegance, all characteristics that I think fit with Kira-- because of her kitsune heritage, she's incredibly agile, speedy, and graceful while she's fighting with her katana. I also thought this excerpt on dragonfly symbolism was perfect for Kira:
"The dragonfly exhibits iridescence both on its wings as well as on its body. Iridescence is the property of an object to show itself in different colors depending on the angle and polarization of the light falling on it. This property is seen and believed as the end of one's self-created illusions and a clear vision into the realities of life. The magical property of iridescence is also associated with the discovery of one's own abilities by unmasking the real self and removing the doubts one casts on his/her own sense of identity. This again indirectly means self-discovery and removal of inhibitions."
That seems pretty accurate, right? Kira is still coming to terms with the fact that she's not human like she's believed for the first sixteen or seventeen years of her life, and is also still learning how to use her abilities of enhanced agility, speed, strength, intuitive weapon usage, foxfire, etc. Plus, the illusion part could also be a nod to the fact that kitsune are supposed to be tricksters. Finally, in Japanese folklore and mythology, the dragonfly symbolizes summer and autumn, and is respected throughout the country so much that Samurai use the dragonfly as a symbol of power, agility, and victory. Hopefully that is a hint that things may not end up as bleak as they seem?

-While on the topic of Kira, I'm a little curious about the fact that the Doctors just happened to show up and do some sort of procedure that involved a lightning bolt striking a metal rod that had been jammed into her eye while Theo was just cars away. Could it be possible that Theo was doing recon long before we first met him in the season's premiere? He made a vague comment to Kira about not having cell service either when she was trying to get a hold of the pack, and we now know that it's most likely that the Doctors were the ones who knocked out the service in the first place, so if Theo has been working with them from the beginning, then he knew what was going on. Did he already know who Kira was before he even officially met her/introduced himself to the pack? Did he summon the Dread Doctors to her? It seems as though he's seeking all the pack members to eventually serve under him when he gets the Alpha power he's craving, so could the Dread Doctors have done that to her not only to superpower her to help them break into Eichen House, but also so Theo could have a darker, out-of-control kitsune fighting alongside him? If so, that's kind of stupid, because kitsune, like nogitsune, aren't exactly the kind of people you can control, you know? So wanting to have one as a minion is stupid and short-sighted. Ugh, what is your deal, Theo?

Anyway, thanks again for your patience, and stay tuned for a long-awaited speculation post and the last two recaps of Season 5A! WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO WITHOUT THIS FABULOUS SHOW???

Comments

  1. (Sorry, it took me a while to answer this. Truth be told, I needed a little break from Teen Wolf after the finale. :) I also fear this might be a bit long again... )

    Dead calf: lol, I love that nobody really knows what animal that was. My guess was a fox, but I also saw someone talking about a dog. Either way, it looked like it died from radiation, didn't it? The whole thing had a decided Chernobyl touch. Creepy. That said, I love that we start the episode with a doctor in a gas mask, only it's Deaton, and his research doesn't involve kidnapping and unethical-illegal experimentation. One hopes, anyway (for the record, I believe Deaton is good, if not always the nicest person around. Maybe more dedicated to "keeping the balance via not telling anyone anything" than I like, but generally, good.).

    They come for all of us: Given what we've heard in the finale - and yes, that's a spoiler - I'm wondering even more if this refers to the Doctors, or the Wild Hunt. And which one of the two groups caused the devastation in and around the power plant.

    Start of the Doctors: I don't know if the Russian plant is where they began, necessarily. On the one hand, their equipment points to something like late 19th century, early 20th century, and their costumes are a cross of 1890s, 1910s and 1930s/40s, roughly, but I'm wondering if they are older than that. From what they've been doing - prolonging their lives, trying to create superior beings by using a mixture of science and magic, er, the supernatural, using wacky mysterious symbols like the ouroboros, leaving labs like the one Deaton and his guide are examining - they have a decided alchemist feel to them, and that could make them a whole lot older, possibly going back to antiquity. I have a specific chimera-related idea that I would like to come back to if/when you do a finale recap, that would also put them at least several hundred years earlier than WW1.

    Tooth, sans claw: Have an idea for that, too, related to the finale.

    Desert Wolf (I): Oh, I love her. I do sense a bit of Black Widow about her, and Marisol Nichols was great in the short time we saw her. Apparently she actually shot this scene without Seth Gilliam, and he did his bits without her, due to scheduling. TV is so crazy. But I agree, she looks enough like Shelley for this little family unit of her, Peter, and Malia to make sense. Great casting in that aspect, too.

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  2. (cont., II):

    Melissa and the Sheriff: oh, that scene. I always adore it when the grown ups actually get development, I mean, which teen show really does that, other than this one? And I think it makes sense, that Melissa would naturally try everything to protect the kids - and I agree, she's co-Mom to the Pack, and Parrish, and whoever else might show up to be a confused young person new to the supernatural - without a second thought, while the Sheriff stumbles over his principles. And I get why everyone is pissed at him for what he does, but I also feel that it just makes sense with his personality? It's not that he's super-mega principled - we know that he let Stiles off for quite a few speeding tickets. But that falls into an "acceptable" range of things you can let go as a law enforcement officer. Everything that happened when the Nogitsune possessed Stiles, however, is in a very different league - and since the Sheriff hushed that up, too, and then must have literally tied himself into knots to cover up what really happened with Parrish, I think he's just finally cracking. As long as he didn't know about the supernatural, he could see himself and his colleagues as a force of good, but I think at the moment, he feels like he's supposed to protect the supernatural at the expense of the "normal" human population, and that, to his understanding, isn't right, or just. He definitely needs a supernatural liaison.

    Theo's wavering strength: nah, he's fine, I think Malia is just massively strong.

    Tube Guy: I'm like you, I thought they were medicating him at first, but no, seems the green goo is some sort of magical all-cure serum. Maybe they should bottle and sell it? Seriously would love to know who and what he is, btw. Another doctor? Some poor, supernatural creature who produces the green goo? A really weird genie in a bottle?

    The Doctors being mean to Hayden and Liam: yeah, if I didn't already hate them, I would have hated them after this at the latest. Poor kids.

    Parrish cleaning up: And see, this is partly why I don't think whoever is controlling him is particularly benevolent. He honestly looks like he was dropped into the shower and someone turned on the water, and then just - left. Even Matt was more mindful with Jackson, and I think Parrish's supernatural side, no matter how independent it may actually be, probably would be more careful about *their* body, too.

    Ken & Noshiko: the Yukimuras are scary. Lovely, and fun characters, and definitely adoptive parents I would enjoy, but man, don't cross these two, or their kid.

    Scott's odd behaviour: I've maintained for a while that he's somehow being influenced, as you know, and actually something was pointed out to me that could be a pretty solid hint in favour of this theory. Back in the first episode of Season 5, Scott got back to the McCall house to pick up his bike and helmets for him and Kira, barely missing Belasko/Glow Wolf by maybe twenty minutes or so. And when he is in the kitchen and picks up the note Belasko dropped something weird happens, something that results in the fridge magnets de-magnifying and dropping to the ground, the clock and the microwave going crazy, and finally the earth shaking. What if that was the Doctors doing something to Scott, like they did something to Kira shortly before (or after)? We have no guarantee that what we saw is what happened, like we've been shown numerous times this season, and realize in this very episode with Kira's flashback. The magnets momentarily getting de-magnified could point to a source of electro-magnetic energy being close to them, and we know that that is what the Doctors use for their "powers." They could have done something to Scott that made him more susceptible to suggestions and doubt, and more likely to freak out. That would certainly explain some of his issues.

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  3. (cont. III):

    What's up with that abandoned house? I have several thoughts on this.

    1. To make a short jump to the next episode, when Sheriff and Parrish examine the room where Hayden and Liam were held, Parrish suggests that it is some kind of "remote field station," and I think that's the most likely scenario. It seems quite clear that the kids were put into this room on purpose and Corey's memory altered so that Theo could "save" them - it would be unwise to use a building too close to the Docs' actual lab for something like this, and if they can go nearly anywhere without being seen, it's not much of a problem (especially if the people they transport are unconscious).

    2. I think Belasko was hanging out in the basement because this was where he was "incubating," if he needed to do that. Otherwise bricking him in would have been "unique," to say the least. Now, if this whole thing was meant to be a trap, someone connected to the whole enterprise easily could have phoned the police and made the noise complaint - getting Parrish of all people would have been the biggest problem, and I guess even that could have been arranged somehow, especially if they knew he was on desk duty and would only be let out in an absolute emergency.
    Thing is, I doubt this was the Doctors, because they seem to go out of their way to leave Parrish alone - they let him take the bodies, and they waited in the school until he was gone before making their appearance. I have more thoughts here, but again... after the finale. :D

    Theo and the Dread Doctors, + Kira and Kitsune: I think the scene implies that he knew what the Doctors were going to do and saw it, and that explains why he was aware that something was off with the kitsune I think. Remember, he did know to check on her and record her mumbling "I'm the messenger of death" in Japanese in "Required Reading."

    As for why they did it - aside from using her to gain access to Valack - Theo may think they wanted to give him a Dark Kitsune, but I believe the DDs knew the kitsune could be dangerous to them, and tried to anger her and throw her and Kira off balance, so that they would cause chaos and thus distract Scott and the others. Which obviously worked, so far.

    The Doctors having powers to make people more pliable: I thought this during "Strange Frequencies," too, since all of the gang immediately forgot that they were at the school to look after Hayden, and just followed leashes and dead people calling for help and mysteriously appearing head!banshees hitting on them. Like they suddenly needed to focus exclusively on this one thing (which then turned into their greatest fear, naturally). The cause seems to be a sound in the traffic jam, too, since we see that the Yukimuras' radio is on. I'm thinking it's really something akin to mass hypnosis.

    Three groups: I mostly agree with your analysis, although I think Belasko is the odd chimera out in Group 1), since he is so different from the others. At the very least, I'm thinking he was supernatural before, because he knew so much about Scott and since he had his own opinion about it, it didn't seem to me like hearsay? And I swear, there is more to this guy. He might be the reddest herring that every herring'd, but I'm just not buying that he was only a minion of the Doctors. And they've ignored him so much in show during their investigations, that I'm even more suspicious.
    As for Group 2) I think that is mainly supernaturals that were somehow "altered" by the Doctors, to keep them from using their powers effectively - Kira, Liam, Scott, and I'm thinking Valack, because even if he looks human, he's locked up in the supernatural ward, and he's a clairvoyant with a third eye. Even if he drilled a hole into his forehead, that eye was probably there before, and the psychic talents, too.

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  4. (cont., IV):

    Mason: He's really one of the few people who is keeping his head in the current crisis, isn't he? I'm thinking the Docs didn't expect any of the "unconnected humans" to be dangerous, so they concentrated on messing with the pack, and maybe people like the Sheriff and Natalie Martin (though I'm going back and forth on them, honestly.).

    What Theo has in him (with spoilers for 5.10): Well, you were 100% right on this one, down to the Docs keeping him for being a successful chimera. Since we know what he is, now, and it doesn't seem related to electricity, I'm guessing he was just very dedicated to keeping up the facade, and deliberately electrified himself. You can say a lot of bad things about the kid for sure, but he's definitely willing to endure some pain to get what he wants.
    As for the flashing lights, maybe that is related to whatever they used to electrify the fence in the first place? The basement and house don't seem to be connected to the lab at all otherwise, and I think they really just used it to stash Belasko, and to put Hayden and Liam somewhere where Theo could safely "find" them.

    Parrish stealing the body from under his boss's and his colleagues' noses: I thought this was pretty impressive, actually. I mean, we don't really get confirmation that everyone's fine after this, but Clark isn't any worse for wear in the following episodes, and whoever is in charge during this little heist is both good at distracting everyone by causing confusion (something that we'll see again in the finale) and apparently making sure that people get taken out without getting hurt too badly. Which brings me to that other thing: the conversation with Sheriff. Now, Parrish sounds about as human as a Martian on their first Earth trip here, but I'm not really inclined to believe his hellhound side is aware enough to exercise a plan involving careful consideration of his surroundings and his "enemies" on the one hand, and the sense to put on new clothes and at least to a degree clean himself before addressing the Sheriff on the other. This whole display has certainly not changed my view that Parrish is being controlled by someone other than his supernatural side during these little adventures.

    Scott being suspicious of Theo: For a moment, yeah. I mean, when that moment comes in the finale - you know which one - he isn't overly surprised, so I'm thinking, for all his confusion and lack of confidence, this situation right here pinged something in him.

    Lydia acting motherly: hormones, clearly. ;) Jokes aside, though, she's been shown as very caring this season, going out of her way to solve problems for others, both banshee and non-banshee related (i.e. Sydney and her hair issues). She's also been doing quite a bit to mentor Parrish, and I don't believe that's just because he's cute. Remember also her conversation in Eichen with Stiles, where he interprets Valack chastising them for jumpstarting the Nemeton as everything that happens being their fault, while she corrects him that it is their responsibility. Scott and Stiles have been shown as big brother/mentor figures to Liam especially since last season, and I think this season, it's definitely Lydia's turn.

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  5. (cont., V. Whoops. Sorry... :/)

    Kira leaving: I wasn't majorly fond of this, but in terms of where the season is now, as opposed to earlier ones, it's just an "actor sitting out a couple of episodes in the middle" sort of thing (I also believe Arden may have wanted to take time off to do a singing tour?). And they set it up quite well, you just feel a bit cheated out of the conclusion, which now won't come until January. All in all, I'm glad we'll find out something about the way kitsune work in this verse, though.

    Why does Desert Wolf want to kill Malia?

    Deaton mentioned that the Doctors seem to have performed experiments in utero, and I'm wondering if this is something that happened to her? It could be an explanation why she might be disgusted or even afraid of her child, especially if she herself was already a supernatural. To throw in some 5.10/after finale interview spoilers from Jeff, (avert your eyes, those who haven't seen that yet) if the supernatural generally has an aversion to the Doctors' workings, it might be true for single people as well. She might even be a part of the Wild Hunt, if we take into account that she's an assassin. So, I agree that she might indeed consider Malia an abomination, but I think she might be coming at it from the opposite side. (One more interview spoiler, this time from Marisol Nichols: apparently she was told she is half wolf, half coyote, so she could be a chimera, or she could be similar to Malia with one werewolf and one coyote parent. I guess we'll have to wait and see how it turns out.)

    Dragonfly symbolism: I really like your interpretation of this. And I don't believe everything will remain this dark. It's only halfway through the season; we won't get to the complete solution until twelve episodes from this one.

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