Summons / Prodigal
On DVD: 
Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Were you thinking that TV didn't have enough shows about werewolves? Well, if you were, then Syfy has the answer for you on January 13th when Bitten, based on the novel by Kelley Armstrong, premieres.

Laura Vandervoort (Smallville, V) stars as Elena Michaels, the only female werewolf in existance. Elena has abandoned her pack to escape the man who turned her into a werewolf and the world she didn't want to be a part of, and is working as a photographer, trying to live a "normal" life. She has a new boyfriend who doesn't know the truth and now her old "family" comes calling.

Mauled bodies have started turning up in the woods near Stonehaven, where her pack has lived for a long time, and the attention threatens to expose the secret existence of werewolves. All of the pack is called home to help sniff out the culprit, drawing Elena back in with her ex-boyfriend.

I was given the first two episodes to preview, "Summons" and "Prodigal", and while the show does a good job of introducing its characters and world, overall it just feels like "werewolves". Nothing here is really shocking or new, except perhaps the idea that in the entire world there is only one female werewolf, something about females not being believed to be strong enough to handle the shift between forms. This, from someone who doesn't like when people fall back on the trope of women being weaker than men, was a bit of a disappointment, especially given that the show seems to be running with it as the men appear unphased by shifting multiple times in a day while Elena is feeling uneasy after undergoing a second change in a short period. Hopefully it will turn out she's just out of practice from trying to live a normal life and not because she isn't as strong as a man.

Also a bit disappointing is that when changed they are just wolves and not some form of in-between human/wolf hybrid. And it might have just been the screeners I was given, so I won't hold it against the show just yet, but I was unimpressed with the CGI of the wolves. The shifting between forms itself was okay, but the wolves looked pretty fake - separate from their surroundings most of the time. Perhaps it was unfinished... we'll see on Monday.

Overall, however, I did enjoy the show, and despite its one annoying flaw I mentioned above about the weakness of women, I did get drawn in and am interested to see where they take the show. So I'll be tuned in on January 13th to watch Bitten, will you?

Review by Jason Pace
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