hth: recent b&w photo of Gillian Anderson (Default)

Boy, Scott's face when he sees Stiles get kissed is actually a little insulting, isn't it? I mean, sure, it's unexpected. But it can't possibly be that shocking.

 

It's an interesting scene, between Stiles and Heather. He really doesn't seem – well, I don't honestly think he seems reluctant, per se; I think the speed with which he tries to get upstairs and get the condoms is indicative of not a lot of reluctance. But he really does seem at a bit of a loss with her. I'm sure it's nerves, but it also seems to me that he's honestly not sure at first that he wants this. It's a nice, genuine moment, because the reality is in those middle-teen years, a whole lot of people have very ambiguous feelings about sex – they want it a lot in theory, but the reality of it just feels very real and not all that comfortable. I think we get to see Stiles working through a little system-shock when something that has always been theoretical to him is abruptly, intensely real. I think there's a little bit of disappointment in his performance, too – or maybe disappointment isn't the word I'm looking for. It just seems like he's somewhat torn in the earlier stages there. Maybe between getting laid nowrightnow and a sentimental hope that his first time would be something more than this? God knows I rag on his stupid Lydia thing, but the kind of guy who invests that much in a hopeless dream of his perfect woman is not all that constitutionally suited to convenience fucking. I wonder how that would've gone down if he didn't have any connection to her at all – if she hadn't been the daughter of his mother's best friend that he remembers fondly from bathtime. I honestly can't guess where he would've come down in that case. Or maybe I'm overthinking it, and he's just meant to be read as nervous.

 

Why do the bottles fly off all the racks, anyway? All the other Weird Events so far have been animal-related, and I didn't notice rats rioting in the wine cellar. I guess this is the same general power over the laws of physics that allows Braeden to accidentally pass on crucial information via the shape of her fingers.

 

Any episode can ingratiate itself to me with a little gratuitous mockery of Peter. I love that guy, but in a way where I want people to just beat the shit out of him constantly. Verbally, if necessary.

 

Finstock's class is – actually kind of awesome. And not only because all of Tumblr apparently accidentally discovered Scott/Stiles through a gifset that I've literally seen like ten times, and I don't even follow Teen Wolf fandom. I mean, yes, that's awesome – but so is the actual class. He's totally right: you can't really understand the psychology of risk-management without actually having something to gain and lose. I think it would be great if economics classes would debunk the idea that people are rational actors and get students to see how id-driven their economic choices (in this case, in the labor economy of the classroom) actually are.

 

Okay, I freaking love the ice chest device. Love it. One of the hardest things to do when filming something with fantasy elements is to make the magical parts visually interesting. Combat is easy – even if your audience has never been in a fight, everyone has gotten hit or fallen down the stairs or been in a car accident. Everyone understands what is happening with physical risk and pain. That's why a lot of times magic ends up looking like another form of combat – lightning bolts or rays of energy are thrown against your opponent's body or whatever. It's just really, really hard to show something mystical happening in a way that looks like something people recognize and relate to. In essence, they're just hypnotizing Isaac, but that's boring to look at, so you have to gin up some kind of phlebotinum to make it visually interesting and to give the audience a sense of stakes. And damn, I love what they came up with for this – the lighting and the motion and the partial transformation and the upward and downward shots, just everything works.

 

The heist-planning scene is among my favorites in the series, too – first just because I really like it when Stiles is the smartest and most prepared guy in the room, and also because him taunting Derek and getting knocked down is perhaps my very favorite Stiles/Derek scene, only rivaled by them in the car in “Shape Shifted.” But Stiles is really just in general on like Donkey Kong in this episode; he's pretty great bouncing off of Peter, too.

 

The bank vault sequences themselves aren't entirely successful for me, mostly because they're too damn dark. Not dark'n'gritty dark, but like literally, I can't see what the hell is going on half the time. Added to the fact that a lot of the characters were still pretty unfamiliar to me the first time – Cora, Kali, Deucalion – and I just found it really hard to track the action. This time through was somewhat easier, but I feel like I shouldn't have to work this hard. In spite of that, though, this is one of my favorite episodes for sheer entertainment, largely just off the pleasure of the dialogue.

 

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hth: recent b&w photo of Gillian Anderson (Default)
Hth

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