Teen Wolf recap: 'Perishable'

In the twist we've all be waiting for, the shocking identity of the Benefactor is finally revealed, and it's somehow even more complicated than expected.
Ep. 09 | Aired Aug 18, 2014

FRIENDS DON'T LET FRIENDS GET KILLED BY DJs Liam and Malia escape their drunken night with their lives and only slightly reeking of lighter fluid.

Scott Everett White/MTV

At least that crew is safe, because Stiles and Lydia have gotten themselves into a bit of a mess over at Eichen House. For some reason they don’t scream "red flag!" at each other and run in the opposite direction when Brunski pops a mixed tape into his cassette player—you know, like the ones the Benefactor and no one else in the world still uses—right before he takes them to the records room, and they don’t even notice when he locks the door behind him after they go inside. But as just about everyone should have guessed, that guy is evil, and he immediately tases them, chains them up, and tells them that all the suicides were, in fact, his doing, including Lorraine’s. But he’s no serial killer, he was just "helping them."

Too bad, because Parrish is about to do a little "helping" himself, when he storms in after figuring Brunski out, to find him holding a syringe to Lydia’s neck, and is forced to shoot him. While Parrish frees them, Stiles and Lydia put together all the puzzle pieces: Brunski was controlling Meredith, he used her to create the dead pool, and he killed her when she tried to help them. So, you may have been more surprised to hear him gurgle his last words: "You think it was me? That I was controlling her? She was controlling me!"

Oh, hey there Meredith, been lurking in the shadows, organizing mass assassinations for long?

It was a little unfortunate that in Meredith's previous Teen Wolf outings, she was characterized almost entirely by her Banshee-induced mental illness; but if everything we’ve seen so far is an act, her "fragility" could end up making sense beyond just being a plot device. She certainly seemed in charge of her faculties when she demurred: "He wasn’t on my list... but he was a bad man."

As excellently shocking as the Meredith reveal was—and, for me, it was shocking—we'll need a lot more development of both the conceit and the character, and quickly, for this Benefactor reveal to not feel like a bit of an easy out. Meredith is one of many interesting tertiary characters that has come and gone this season before really being able to have any sort of impact on the larger Teen Wolf world. Without a connection to the other characters and their world, what does it matter if she has to be taken down? Once they defeat Meredith, not only is there no real permanent effect on the future of the pack, but helpfully, Lydia also no longer has to feel bad about the pain that she and her grandmother inflicted on an "innocent" person.

Don’t get me wrong—I’m all in on shock value; Meredith coyly sauntering around that shelving unit was simply chilling. Just as long as that shock has value. And it will! There are still three episodes left and approximately 700 storylines to tie up. We can only wait and see what Meredith’s motives are, but until then, some questions if Meredith is really the head of this operation: Does Meredith not age? How long ago was that flashback supposed to be? Even with Brunski’s help, how is she holding down the technology side of the dead pool exchanges from Eichen House? And further, how does an Eichen House patient cash $117 million in bearer’s bonds?

A few more things…
–Clearly there is much more to the Benefactor story than just a vengeful Banshee—let’s not forget Kate’s weird hand-delivered mixed tape about werewolf history in Beacon Hills. Was that the doings of a 17-year-old girl? With all the technology and coding involved, I’m still holding out for Danny as the top of this pyramid scheme…
–You can mark my time of death as the exact moment I watched that Stilinski hospital scene. They just love each other so much!
–Stiles’ ever growing need for that money, and Scott’s fierce protection of it (but really terrible job at hiding it) seems to be building to something I am most certainly not emotionally prepared for.
–When Stiles and Lydia inevitably open up a detection agency, will their tag line be: "We’re smarter, prettier, and snarkier than you… how can we help you with your supernatural emergency?"
–I’d watch a whole hour of Braeden breaking creeps’ noses right after confusing them.
–And finally, what is with Derek’s sage attitude about dying? Get some fight in you, old man, it’s not time to go yet—you just got a normal girlfriend! (Well, she’s a mercenary, but it’s as normal as a Hale could hope for.)

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