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‘Wolf Pack’ 1×04 review: “Fear and Pain” and pleasure?

By February 17, 2023No Comments5 min read
[FYI, From here on out, the character known as Park Ranger Garrett Briggs (Rodrigo Santoro) will be referred to as “Zaddy” or “Zaddy Briggs”]

Wolf Pack is a wild TV show. These kids are traumatized and angry, and Wildfire Investigator Kristin Ramsy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) isn’t helping with that. She’s provoking them by disregarding their claims. The adults of Wolf Pack, aside from Zaddy Briggs, hate children. It’s gaslighting at its finest. Not only that but with the school reopened, the teachers also seem to delight in gaslighting students that everything is back to normal and they can take a test like there isn’t a massive fire happening mere miles away. It’s wild.

In Wolf Pack Episode 4, “Fear and Pain,” Kristin Ramsy is confronted with the idea that there might actually be a killer animal on the loose when sighting a ram with a massive claw scratch. I know I previously claimed that Kristin Ramsy might be the wolf, but I’m off my game with this one. I’m not sure that could be true anymore, but I think she’s more invested in the monster theory than she’s leading on.

If there’s one thing we know about Harlan Briggs (Tyler Lawrence Gray) at this point, it is that he and Jeff Davis love a RAVE. I love this for Network television, an actual horny gay teenager on the prowl at raves every night. Maybe I was just a loser in high school, but there were no raves we could go to every night that I knew of. However, Harlan seems to know where to go whenever he needs to blow off some steam or … another twink. I think that’s the representation we’ve been looking for.

This kid Austin (Rio Mangini) is a mess; he saw the giant wolf, he’s angry enough already, clearly privileged, yet doesn’t have a prescription meds hookup. That’s a plothole; no way his only connection is neurotic wolf boy Everett Lang (Armani Jackson) for some sleeping pills. There’s a rave every night; you’re telling me that’s the only connection you could think of? Plot hole.

The neurotic wolf boy has an anxiety attack that triggers panic in the rest of the Wolf Pack, pushing the group over the edge. Luna Briggs (Chloe Rose Robertson) gets a little triggered; she’s insecure without the pack and conflicted about her memory. Blake Navarro (Bella Shepard) is so wound up that she decides they can’t be near each other. Harlan even gets fangs in a violent turn of events.

I like that we’re learning more about Luna; she’s why Zaddy Briggs decided to make silver bullets. She tore apart her horse in the middle of the night on a full moon. To think that Harlan appears like the loose canon when in reality, it’s the quiet girl who keeps her emotions internal. It makes sense why she’s so into Austin. Despite her gentle nature, she’s attracted to someone who shows their emotions and isn’t afraid of them. The editing around Luna figuring out what happened was great with the horse in the barn… It comes across as pretty spooky, leading to a touching moment between the daughter and father. It gives Luna more depth; she’s inherently afraid of her own power and emotion. I don’t know if I can say worth the wait, but I’m happy she now has a better backstory and deeper character attributes.

Blake has to take Danny Navarro (Nevada Jose) with her to work, and he triggers an attack from the wolf. Blake accidentally howls, bringing the pack to her at the parking garage, and neurotic wolf boy Everett gets a dedicated shot that makes him look like superman, not a joke. I loved it; it made me cackle. It becomes clear to the pack that the giant wolf is doing what they think is right for them, trying to protect them. It makes sense what happened with the cop in “Origin Point” last week.

After all of the sound editing and clipping together that inferred the pack members were connected, the characters themselves finally figured it out. They genuinely are a pack and are better together than apart. I can’t wait for Everett and Blake to get their tension taken care of; I need those two to settle their connection and become an item before this drags it out. I think their chemistry would play off much better if they didn’t have to be so combative all the time. The same goes for the whole group, I think.

The Zaddy Briggs and Kristin Ramsy team-up is good. We’re getting somewhere. It’s fun to watch two adults try and one-up one another. Keep secrets and think they’re using the other. It’s brilliant. I love watching adults flail at scheming like that. Kristin has her motive, and Zaddy has his.

Wolf Pack is edging toward having too many characters. All these high school students seem to have a part to play in the plot, but it’s confusing sometimes to pick them apart and remember who they are and their history with the other characters. Hopefully, that balances out as we move forward and more of their purposes come forward.

I thoroughly enjoyed this episode—the jumpiness of the action and the suspense combined with the story progression and the comradery between the actors. Wolf Pack is coming together well; I’m pleased with where it’s going, and I genuinely can’t wait for the next installment.

Isobel Grieve

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