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The Teen Wolf finale may have closed the book on Season 4, but for one fan-favorite character, a new chapter is just beginning.
“There are some big things coming up for Parrish next season,” actor Ryan Kelley tells TVLine. I’m excited about that.”
The Season 4 finale gave us our first taste of what’s to come during a conversation between Lydia and Parrish, in which she promised to help him figure out what he is once and for all. Below, Kelley dissects tonight’s major turning point for Parrish, and what the future might hold for him and Lydia.
TVLINE | OK, be honest: Do you know what Parrish is?
What’s crazy about Teen Wolf is that Jeff and the writers keep us in the dark for the most part. I did have the opportunity to find out what Parrish is, though. I had a sit-down with [creator] Jeff [Davis], and he asked me if I wanted to know, and I said, “Of course! Please, please, please.” I could tell he was super hesitant, so I was like, “Wait, do you want to tell me? Or are you just doing this because you feel bad for me?” He said, “I don’t really want to tell you, but I will if you want me to.” So I decided to wait. I had the opportunity, but I was too big of a baby. I could see he was struggling with it in his mind, so I said, “I’ll just let Jeff do Jeff. He can work his magic.”
TVLINE | I’m sorry, what? I didn’t know a human being could be capable of such restraint.
[Laughs] For many, many, many weeks, I tried to trick Jeff into telling me what Parrish is. I kept saying, “If I know, I can play the character differently,” but I think that’s actually why he doesn’t tell us things ahead of time. He did mess with me a lot, though; he’d smile and look like he was getting ready to say something, then walk away, or pretend to answer a phone call. He messed with me all season.
TVLINE | You must have a theory, at least. Any guesses?
With Jeff, anything is possible. I was almost 99 percent sure I was a hunter in Season 3, so things can definitely change. One of the big theories people seem to be latching onto is that he’s a phoenix, just because of the ashes and the fire. I will tell you I don’t personally think he’s a phoenix, but I could be wrong. I don’t think it’s that simple, it just can’t be.
TVLINE | We don’t know, and you don’t know, but is it possible that Parrish knows?
I don’t know that, but in my opinion, I truly believe he doesn’t. I also hope he’s not evil; I’m just going to throw that out there. And if he’s not evil, there’d be no reason for him to pretend not to know what he is. He’s been asking a lot of questions lately.
TVLINE | Parrish and Lydia definitely have a connection. Might that turn romantic in Season 5?
In the realm of Teen Wolf, anything is possible. And there’s definitely chemistry there; we’ve had some pretty cool scenes together. Whether it ends up being romantic, or just a friendship where he’s intrigued by her, we’re not quite sure yet.
TVLINE | I mean, crazier things have happened; this is Teen Wolf.
That’s actually a running joke on set. Whenever someone’s like, “I don’t understand why my character would do this,” or, “This feels awkward,” the director — or whoever — will be like, “Guys, this is a show about werewolves. Just do it.”
In a recent interview with OK Magazine, Teen Wolf star Holland Roden revealed how she thinks the hit series should end along with what its like being part of such a huge show and what she hopes to see in Season 5
OK!: Since it’s been a couple of years, how do you think the show should end? Like which story lines would you like to see finished off?
HR: Rhe Stydia thing, Stiles and Lydia, it would be nice to have closure on that. Are they friends, are they more than friends? But that’s all Jeff [Davis], too! I’m a fan of Friends, and I loved the Ross and Rachel connection, and how they ended that.
OK!: How has your life changed along with the show?
HR: Gosh, I was in college when I booked the show. I feel like I’ve grown up on the show, and I feel like the rest of the cast has grown up on the show as well. The boys had just graduated high school. Now I’m in my late 20s. The show’s really been the financial catalyst of my 20s, the emotional catalyst of my 20s. Learning the ins and outs of this business through the show. It’s been a pleasure to be a part of it. My life support.
OK!: Did you ever anticipate the show would be this huge when you signed on?
HR: The intensity of the fans, no. But I think it’s funny that they are as frantic as they are, because it’s a funny way to think about yourself. This was our first experience with that, and so it’s just like anything else I could experience again. We knew it was a good pilot. It was just whether people would give us a chance or not. How I know I love something—I would find myself reading the Teen Wolf scripts, turning off my cell phone, turning one light on over the script, and the world would quiet around me. I fell asleep during the Harry Potter books! For me to be captivated, it takes a lot. We all knew we had a good script, we just needed people to give us a chance.
OK!: MTV just announced another huge, huge season. What do you hope happens in season five?
HR: What I hope to see—I don’t know if it’ll happen—but I would love to continue to explore Lydia’s back story, with her family and the banshee connection. Is it genetic? Was it a divine intervention sort of thing? The nature vs. nurture of how the Banshee thing came to be.
A WORD OF ADVICE – IF YOU HAVE NOT WATCHED THE FINALE YET THEN DO NOT READ AHEAD!! I REPEAT DO NOT READ AHEAD!!!!
E Online chatted with Teen Wolf showrunner, Jeff Davis, about the action-packed season finale, the thought behind all the twists, and where the show will go in season 5. (Hint: It involves the desert.)
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: There are so many things I want to talk about, so I’ve tried to organize myself. First up, the Scott vs. Peter showdown. I wanted to ask how you came up with Peter’s look. It was very Deucalion-esque.
JEFF DAVIS: Yeah. Very specifically, yes. I said to our FX makeup artist, “I want something between Deucalion, Derek, and the alpha that Peter was in the first season.” I knew we wanted to give him sort of a darker skin tone. I love that grayish look to his skin tone, but it was very much influenced by the design of Deucalion, which I loved.
I just loved the whole idea of Scott versus the one who bit him four years ago. And although I’m really glad you did not kill Peter, did you ever contemplate killing Peter?
We had talked about it quite a bit. We danced around the idea of Scott having to kill someone and to me, Scott is like Superman or like Spider-Man—he doesn’t kill people, and he’ll do anything he can to keep from doing that, so it’s like the situation in the end of 3×12 where a lot of people were angry because they didn’t kill Deucalion. I’m like, “What are they going to do? Execute him?” [Laughs] I don’t think that’s something you want to see your hero do. But Peter’s just too good. It’s very hard to kill someone like Ian Bohen. We killed him once, and then we had to bring him back because he was so good. That’s actually a testament to the actor that we don’t want to kill you off. But I also felt like we had gone so dark at the end of 3B with killing off several characters that maybe a little less bloodshed for this finale would work well for us. In a way, this season was very much a transitional season. It was sort of a rebuilding. Sometimes we felt like we were almost doing a complete reboot of the show.
Well when you first introduced Ian Bohen’s character, you all introduced this mystery wing of Eichen House that’s full of supernatural creatures. Is that wing something you want to explore moving forward?
Absolutely. We call it our Arkham Asylum, basically.
And it’s hinted at by Argent during the season that he has a place that he can take Kate if necessary, so that’s part of it for us. We just loved the idea of having this lower level of Eichen House. We know Eichen House isn’t the greatest place in the world, but what if they had a wing, a sub-level where they kept people like that? And it’s very much built out of like the Batman comic book and inspired by that rogue gallery of villains that you see through the bars like The Joker and The Riddler. We love that stuff. We’re always very inspired by comic books.
Moving to my next bullet point, I think this might be the part of the finale that made me gasp the loudest: The moment when Derek is alive and Derek is a wolf! When he stood up and I saw the tattoo, I think I almost passed out.
I’m hoping we have that effect on a lot of fans. Did you think he was dead for real?
Honestly, I had to pause the episode and go do something right after the moment he supposedly died, and I spent a good 15 minutes thinking he was really dead before I came back and could hit play again. And it was the worst 15 minutes of my life.
[Laughs] No, we couldn’t leave him like that. I love that moment. To me, it’s the evolution of this character who, in the first season, is kind of a bad guy and is not against doing bad things. And when he says, “I was evolving,” he’s been evolving from season 1, and if he can’t be an alpha, the idea that he has to be reborn again as something greater was very appealing to us as writers that we would finally see him rise up. He would reach that level of control that could change his body so completely that he can disappear into nature, which we consider the most powerful part of being a werewolf. If you can do that, then you’ve truly reached your zenith of power.
So then how does he compare to an alpha at that point?
Well he’s got a great power. It is to say he may not never be an alpha again, but he’s reached a level of power that he can manipulate his body so he has that control now, he’s just not the leader of a pack. In many ways, it’s like having a very powerful second in command almost. He is Lancelot. If Scott is King Arthur, then Derek is very much Lancelot.
Let’s move to Kate and Chris. I thought it was really beautiful how you all brought it back to Allison. Was that your thinking all season, that Allison was the driving force behind Kate?
Absolutely. Part of what Kate wanted to do, and Peter says it in an earlier episode, is restore the Argents to their glory. And the reason she is so furious at Scott and so willing to put him in harm’s way is because he ruined it. He somehow decimated this family and it’s all his fault, but Allison is the figure that, she’s at the center of it all. In a way, much of this season, we wanted to keep paying homage to Allison and to her character and the idea that Kate believes they killed her, the reason she’s dead is because of them, and Argent says, “She died saving her friends. Who would you die for?” And that’s a life well-lived, even if she died at 17, so it was a very poignant scene, and I think the two actors as well, Jill [Wagner] and JR [Bourne], did some of the best work I’ve ever seen them do.
The other component of that was Chris going with the Calaveras to look for Kate. So when we come back next season, is it your intention that that’s a storyline on its own, that we follow his journey to find Kate, or are we going to see less of him?
We’ll see. Next season is very much up in the air. And to be honest, getting through this season was such an unbelievable challenge that we’re glad to just have a break and not think anymore and wait for new ideas to come to us. So we’re trying not to talk too much about season 5 until we actually sit back in the writers’ room and get to it. The funny thing is that really, when we said yes to 24 episodes for season 3, we had no idea that we’d actually have an even shorter amount of time to get on to the next 12 of season 4. We actually only had six weeks in between production cycles, and that was unbelievably challenging, so it was more like we did 36 episodes straight.
One of the things you’ve talked about and that I think made this season so great is that you all kind of simplified the mythology by having something as straightforward as assassins trying to kill supernatural beings. Is that something you’d like to continue moving forward?
Well, we have an idea for next season. We love those complicated mythologies. I’m a huge fan of Lost, and I’m the kind of person who likes a lot of mystery, the kind of mystery where not everything is always explained. I love the fact that people theorize about the show and come up with their own ideas, so we’ll see what happens. But it was fun to do a mystery that really put our main characters on their toes but also had thematic ligaments as well that they were still human beings struggling with money and struggling with what to do. And all of that tied back to Peter, because to a lot of people, money is power and money will allow you to do things, and Peter’s whole goal is power, and he, as the actual person who came up with the dead pool, you can see that he’s always had plans and these plans will never work out because it’s always about power.
The mystery I’m obsessed with, as I’m sure many fans are, is the desert wolf. I’m sure that’s one of the main things you all want to explore going forward.
We’re definitely going to be working on that storyline next season. And Shelley Hennig has turned out to be such a great addition to the cast. She’s so funny. She’s had some of my favorite funny moments this season.
The other character I’m loving is Parrish! And the season ended with Lydia giving him the Beastiaire, so will we learn what he is next year?
Oh yes. Yeah, you will find out, and it will be a big part of the storyline. Ryan Kelley has actually been a friend of mine for about four or five years now, and I auditioned him several times for other roles on the show including Isaac, who was played by Daniel Sharman. The thing about Ryan is he’s been in this interesting place where he’s not boyish enough to be a high schooler anymore, but he’s not quite manish enough to play the adult like seasoned cop or a dad of anyone, but as a young deputy? Perfect! So I finally found a role for him, and we’ve grown the role, and I think he’s doing awesome. In the finale, in the screencap of that shot where he’s firing the gun, I said to him, “You look like Steve McQueen in this shot!” So it’s great to see the audience embracing him. He’s such a good guy too; I’m really proud of him.
What else? Oh, Kira got her first tail! I was sitting here going, “What does this mean?” I remember her mom had tails that controlled the Oni, correct?
Yeah, exactly. It’s a symbolic connection. In the myth, kitsune gather tails. They grow more tails as they get more powerful, and the most powerful is nine-tailed kitsune, although there’s legends of the thousand-tailed kitsune. But this is a way for us to visualize her tail and give it significance and meaning, because she faces possible death in the catacombs of La Iglesia and she comes back in time to warn Stiles what they’re about to do, which is kill Scott. I think we pulled back a little bit on Kira; we gave her fun stuff to do this season, but since 3B was essentially her story, we had three characters we really wanted to concentrate on this season which was Derek, Lydia, and Scott, and returning the show to [putting] our lead star, our lead actor, back the spotlight. And Dylan [O'Brien] did so phenomenally well in 3B, and that was part of what we wanted. But we love Arden Cho and she’s so good and it’s so nice to have her as a series regular now.
OK, we have to talk about Liam. I was watching that scene with Scott as a berserker wondering if you’d have Kira bring him back or maybe Stiles, but I love that you all had Liam be the one to pull him back. What was your thinking behind that?
It was partly the theme of the season: Not all monsters do monstrous things. The whole idea of our assassins in the dead pool was that the monsters this year were all human, and the monsters were the good guys, a very sort of Clive Barker-style look at the genre where the monsters get to be the heroes. With Liam recalling that line, I think it made it a very touching moment because we were very certain that we wanted to give Scott and Stiles a little brother this season. I love those relationships, and I think Tyler Posey and Dylan Sprayberry really took to it, and the funny thing is, they really like each other in real life and you can see that come across on screen, you can see that protectiveness of Tyler because Dylan Sprayberry is very new to TV; he’s never worked a schedule like this, and Tyler Posey and Dylan O’Brien have both been awesome with him, kind of showing him the ropes and making sure he’s doing a great job alongside them. It’s just been a very good relationship. So I knew I wanted a call-back to that line—”You’re not a monster; you’re a werewolf, like me”—and I was really happy with the way it turned out. That kid’s a good little actor.
He is! OK, the last thing I want to ask you is about Braeden. I think having such a badass human element to the show is so great, so is she going to continue to be a part of the pack more or less?
I’d love her to come back, and that’s kind of why we tied her into the whole desert wolf mystery. I love Meagan Tandy so much; she’s such an awesome girl. I think she’s really stepped up this season. It’s funny. We just had her finale screening on Saturday night, and I got to meet her parents and her parents were so proud. So Braeden’s definitely going to play a bigger part. It was great to have an actor who was there really just to show up for one episode in 301 and to have her come back and become a much bigger role. She did nine episodes out of 12 this season, and that’s a testament to an actor who, they bring it on the day and you just want to write more for them.
You can of course read the full interview over at E Online
In a recent interview with Inside TV, stars Tyler Posey & Dylan O’Brien chatted about their first time meeting each other, music and other things:
As you near the end of season four, do you ever think back to how much Teen Wolf has changed since that first year?
POSEY: All the time. So much of this show is Dylan and me and our relationship, and the thing that blows my mind is how young I felt when we first started hanging out.
O’BRIEN: And at such a transitional point in our lives, too. We were 18, and it’s only been four years, but I feel like for us that’s a lot longer of a four years than for anyone else.
POSEY: We’ve gone through some really cool stuff with each other.
Do you remember the screen test?
POSEY: That’s where we first really hit it off.
O’BRIEN: I’ll never forget that.
What was your first impression of each other?
POSEY: You go first.
O’BRIEN: Well, the first thing I remember about Tyler… He walked in and asked immediately where the bathroom was.
And I remember just thinking, “Wow, he’s really comfortable. That’s so badass.” And then we started talking immediately, because the test was a disaster. It took seven and a half hours.
POSEY: It took a long time.
O’BRIEN: And at one point, they let us go across the street to have lunch because they were still working things out.
Was it just the two of you all seven hours?
POSEY: We never actually auditioned with each other.
O’BRIEN: We never even went in the room together. I didn’t go in the room with anyone.
POSEY: That’s because they knew. They knew, this guy, right here.
Tyler, what was your first impression of Dylan?
POSEY: At this point, I [had been] acting for, like, 12 years, and I never really liked going to auditions because the kids were lame. When I saw Dylan, he had on a DVS shirt, which is a skateboard company, and I grew up skateboarding. I immediately thought, “Okay, this dude seems cool.” And then, I don’t remember how we started talking…
O’BRIEN: We talked about our bands.
POSEY: Oh, right! We were both in bands.
What were your bands named?
POSEY: Lost in Kostco. And our bands are so similar.
O’BRIEN: Mine was Slow Kids at Play, and we had, like, pop-punk elements but more of the beachy, reggae vibe.
POSEY: And you had some badass hardcore breakdowns. I was just listening to some Slow Kids the other day.
Do you wish you were still doing music?
O’BRIEN: Of course. It was one of the most depressing days when I wasn’t in the band anymore. Because I just literally don’t have time.
POSEY: But I think we’re both so musically inclined that it’s going to be in our lives one way or another. We should do something.
O’BRIEN: I miss playing shows. Anonymously playing shows, too.
POSEY: I think we should play a show. It’d be fun.
Okay, so back to Teen Wolf. What should people know about Teen Wolf that they don’t? It’s been called the new Buffy.
POSEY: That’s a really good comparison in the tone and the look, but it’s also got a lot more heart. We’re given some crazy scenarios but we do our best to make them real. I think a lot of people can relate to the show. It really does deal with relatable things. Your boyfriend turns into a werewolf…how many times has that happened to me?
O’BRIEN: So many. You always get stuck with that.
O’BRIEN: The show is not what people would expect at all. There has to be such a stigma when you hear the name and what it is and the network it’s on. People don’t immediately give it a chance. They hear Teen Wolf, and it’s like, “Oh, that movie from the ’80s!”
Which is crazy, since the show has basically nothing to do with the movie at this point.
O’BRIEN: We’ve always known there’s something really special about it. It deals with relevant things but also fantastical adventures, and it can be really dark and really funny, but it’s always got heart. I just think that no one would expect any of that just by hearing it.
POSEY: I think people are afraid to like it. If they actually check it out, it’s really entertaining.
O’BRIEN: I sometimes wonder what I would think of it, if I would give it the chance. I get it. And it’s really aware of itself, too. It’s important to have a sense of humor that makes it easier to believe in the world you’re watching. We’re very aware of the fact that we are a teen werewolf show.
Dylan, are you happy that you don’t play a werewolf?
O’BRIEN: Always. I love the character that I play, and I understand my role and I love it, and there are also times where, yeah, I’d love to be a werewolf, but sometimes it’s way more awesome when I see these guys having to put on makeup for an hour and a half.
[At this point, O’Brien accidentally lets slip a spoiler.]
POSEY: Oh my God. I can’t believe you just said that!
O’BRIEN: Dude, we’re not allowed to say anything!
POSEY: I sometimes just literally don’t even say anything.
Between the two of you, who has had the weirder fan interaction?
POSEY: I’m sure you do.
O’BRIEN: I don’t know if I can say this. It’s inappropriate. But it’s pretty funny. I just got it at an autograph signing. They hand you notes and letters and portraits, photo books, little bracelets—all kinds of amazing stuff. But I got an envelope, and the first things that dropped out were two condoms that said something… graphic on them.
POSEY: We also get a lot of dolls.
O’BRIEN: Okay, that’s the direction we’re going in!? That’s not weird interaction!
Dylan, you’re about to headline The Maze Runner. Are you nervous about what’s to come?
O’BRIEN: If you want to get down to it, this would turn into a therapy session. But I’m really proud of it, and I poured my life into it, and hopefully I’m going to do it for another few years. I’m really excited for people to see it.
The two of you are so recognizable now—do you think you could crash a screening?
POSEY: Oh dude, disguises do not work anymore.
O’BRIEN: Unless you have a mask.
POSEY: I’ve grown a beard and that doesn’t work. I’ve worn hats, and that doesn’t work.
O’BRIEN: Shailene Woodley wore a hat to The Fault in Our Stars, right?
POSEY: I feel like she’s so recognizable. I mean, should we crash a screening?
O’BRIEN: We would literally be the two dudes in trenchcoats and hats and sunglasses.
What is one interest the other has that you just don’t understand?
POSEY: I mean, he’s really into sports. I want to understand them—I want to be into sports.
O’BRIEN: I actually genuinely don’t understand how tattoos work. He always tries to explain them to me, and I keep confirming with him and he’ll be like, ‘No, no,’ and he’ll start over again. Like, do they sew it in?
To read the full interview head on over to Inside TV