Teen Wolf season four is only two episodes old but already Jeff Davis and company have wasted no time jumping right in with a daring rescue, a new/old villain, and a couple plot twists that have left viewers like me constructing theories to explain the unexplainable.
Let’s pause for a warning now: past this point there will be major spoilers for this past week’s episode “117″. Stop reading now if you haven’t seen it yet.
Okay, they’re gone. On to the good stuff.
In the season premiere, un-dead were-jaguar Kate magically de-aged Derek to back when he was a teenager in love with her. This past episode, she used his trust to gain access to the Hale family vault and its treasured contents. Then Peter (and some new bad guys) showed up. In the middle of all that, as Derek fought the Berserkers because Scott needed his help, he shifted between young and old, at last returning to present day Derek complete with (we can assume) all his memories and newly yellow eyes.
Wait, yellow eyes? As established in episode 8 of season 3 (“Visionary”), a werewolf’s eyes will turn from yellow to blue if they are responsible for the death of an innocent, but we don’t know what a reverse of that could mean or how it would even be possible.
Given the precedent set by this show, it’s most likely that this is all new ground and we’re about to find out something completely new about werewolf eye color. Maybe legend has it they can go from blue back to yellow only if you’ve been de-aged in Mexico and defeat a new kind of bad guy on the last Monday of the month. (If it’s a Tuesday, they turn purple.) But what if this is one of the times Teen Wolf actually planted seeds a while ago about something bigger? Stay with me, I’m about to theorize.
Pre-de-aging, Derek’s eyes were blue which means he was (or felt he was) responsible for the death of an innocent. We can presume this is Paige, his family, or both. Let’s tackle the Paige situation first.
Everything we know about Paige is from “Visionary” and comes entirely from Peter, the dictionary definition of an unreliable narrator. The episode did acknowledge that and showed what Peter told Stiles and Cora was very different from what actually happened, but the way her bite went down and the aftermath have enough ambiguity about them that it leaves the viewer with the feeling that maybe we still don’t know the whole truth.
One of two things could be going on here. One, Peter did a lot more manipulating of the situation than even we saw. Derek never really seemed convinced the bite was the best thing, maybe Peter wrote the note that got her to the school, etc, and Derek felt more responsible than he really was for her death.
Or two, the entire story could have really been about Paige and teenage Peter. It was established previously that Peter played basketball; “Visionary” is the only implication Derek ever did. The bite against someone’s will as the only solution seems much more of a Peter thing than a Derek thing, especially since at the beginning of “117″ Derek can’t even control his own shift yet. No one has yet to mention Paige around Derek (granted, they probably all want to keep being alive so I don’t blame them) but Peter has mentioned her on a couple occasions. Plus, I can imagine it would have messed Derek up pretty badly, so how young would he have had to have been when he was with Paige to get over her enough to seem like the relatively well adjusted kid de-aged Derek was in this episode, while having also already fallen for Kate and still be in high school? A lot of the timeline concerning the Darach would make more sense if it were really Peter at least a few years earlier too (check out this post by thepsychicclam for more on all this).
But then again, and I say this with love, a lot of everything would make more sense if this wasn’t Teen Wolf.