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Teen Wolf - The Complete First Season (2011) Print E-mail
Tuesday, 29 May 2012
Image“Teen Wolf” was a mere movie cult phenomenon in the 80s with an animated series that followed, so it was a bit of a surprise when a TV series arose in the spring last year.  Thankfully, the series doesn’t actually relate to the original film in, well, any single way.  Okay, well the first name of the lead character is still Scott and his best friend is still named Stiles, but other than that the show shares no similarities.

Thankfully the female lead character’s name was changed from Boof.  All joking aside, “Teen Wolf” the series has potential.  The first season, comprised of 12 episodes didn’t get hailed as a great new series but it wasn’t as critically panned as most thought it would be.  The show struggles a bit here and there with some of the storylines and character development.  Nevertheless, the series can rise to a new level in season two, premiering this weekend.

It is difficult to determine if the series would be more successful on a major network or if MTV is its best home.  I was thinking the CW might be a good fit given their propensity for supernatural sagas.  In any event, the series follows Scott McCall as he is attacked by a werewolf and struggles to get a hold of his newfound abilities and of course temper.  Allison Argent (Crystal Reed) is Scott’s love in high school.  She is his achilles heel but also his savior.  Scott’s best friend, Stiles is an agitated goof that wants Scott to embrace his new powers but is steadfast in making sure he remains in control of his temper. In the first season the hunters are after Scott, his werewolf mentor Derek and the ultimate alpha.  Secrets are a plenty in the first season.  The alpha remains unknown until the end, Derek clearly seems to be harboring a history of his own as well as a lust for power.  Scott must keep his secret from Allison since she belongs to a family of hunters.  Given the nature of the first season I have high hopes for the second.

For some reason or another the first season has only been released on the DVD format.  I wonder in this day and age how much more production cost there could possibly be to but out a Blu-ray set as well.  Alas, the standard DVD set has superior image quality to that of most DVD transfers.  Of course, being a dark-natured series and that being a weakness of the DVD format don’t expect much in the way of shadow delineation.  While it is better than most, it certainly doesn’t compare with Blu-ray or even the HD TV broadcast.  Regardless, the details are quite good and color saturation is accurate.  Artifacting is quite to a minimal, that which is inherent in the format.  This is a pleasing transfer but only so far as the DVD format can take it.

The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1.  The biggest issue with the audio here isn’t the transfer but rather the lack of music rights.  Many of the originally aired songs have been replaced.  I thought that was a thing of the past, but apparently studios never learn.  I doubt that many will notice the difference but there are some edit points that are noticeable.  And then there are other times in which the music just doesn’t seem to be a right fit for the sequence.  Aside form that the audio transfer is as good as lossy Dolby Digital is going to allow for.  The surround channels are ambient and dialogue is nicely prioritized.  Frequency coupling and masking is a problem, but that is always the case.

The DVD includes deleted and extended scenes including an extended version of the finale episode.  Also there is a gag reel, “Shirtless Montage,” cast commentaries on select episodes, as well as segments on meeting the cast, the red carpet, and the romance.

“Teen Wolf” is a big hit in my opinion.  It certainly isn’t garnering the attention that it should.  This is perhaps one of my favorite TV series left on the air.  Check it out and get ready for the second season.  I recommend this title.

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