Werewolves are a supernatural species of half-wolves. They are the main protagonists within the world of Teen Wolf.
They usually appear in human form, but can shift to a certain degree into a wolf. Even in human form they possess supernatural abilities and powers.
Inexperienced werewolves are at the mercy of the full moon. Under its sway, they lose control and their homicidal tendencies increase.
Observed psychological characteristics of the werewolves of Teen Wolf include:
- Increased risk taking
- Aberrant social behavior
- Homicidal tendencies
- Increased sexual desire
- Rebelliousness and distrust of authority
- Animal-like mannerisms such as growling
These behaviors intensify on the days preceding the full moon.
- The transformation into a werewolf can cure chronic illnesses like asthma and epilepsy.
- The werewolves eyes glow in all images and video. (See Eye Color below)
- Werewolves do not heal as quickly from bites or scratches from Alpha werewolves.
Types of Werewolves
There are three known types of werewolves in the Teen Wolf mythology, Alphas, Betas and Omegas.
An Alpha is the leader of a pack of werewolves. It is the strongest, most powerful and so far the most lethal variety of Werewolf.
An Alpha is the type of werewolf that bit Scott.
The bite of an Alpha usually only has two outcomes - transformation or death.
There are exceptions (see Kanima) and those who are immune to the bite.
Alphas have the ability to hide their scent from other werewolves.
Laura Hale was an Alpha and appeared to be completely wolf-like when transformed. Peter Hale was more beast-like when transformed. Like a wolf, he ran on all fours but unlike the animal Peter had glowing red eyes, a short snout and larger teeth.
It is stated by Derek that alphas become stronger if they are part of a pack.
Peter Hale says he's “become an Alpha” by “taking that” from his niece Laura.
To become an Alpha, a Beta wolf can kill an Alpha. In Code Breaker, Derek kills his uncle and becomes the next Alpha.
Also the show hints that there is a natural line of succession within packs. When Laura's family is killed, and her uncle incapacitated, she assumed the role of Alpha within the Hale Pack.
Scott was a Beta throughout Season 1.
Betas can be born like Derek or made with a bite from an Alpha as was the case with Scott.
Beta transformations are less complete than the Alphas in that they retain a mostly human appearance but grow fangs, claws, and fur. We have seen involuntary Beta transformations triggered by strong emotions. Pain can reverse the transformation.
Betas have a mental link with their creators and can be “called”, forced to shift and partially controlled against their will.
Derek states in Lunatic that a bitten werewolf can reverse their lycanthropy if it kills its sire but admits this is hearsay and he doesn't know if it is true.
The third type of werewolf is the Omega.
The designation "Omega" within the world of Teen Wolf simply means that it is a "lone wolf" without a pack. Since being with a pack makes werewolves physically stronger, Omegas are not as powerful as their peers within packs.
The first episode of Season 2 is titled Omega and includes a homeless man who later turns out to be an Omega werewolf.
Teen Wolf Creator Jeff Davis says, in addition to the obvious reference to the plot, the title represents Scott's state of mind during this season. If he chooses not to join Derek's new pack he will be the lone wolf, the Omega.
Powers and Abilities
- Enhanced Strength: Werewolves are much stronger than humans.
- Enhanced Speed: Werewolves are much faster than humans.
- Enhanced Agility: Werewolves can jump, run, climb and react faster than humans.
- Accelerated Healing: Werewolves heal quickly from most injuries.
- Heightened Senses: Werewolves can smell, see and hear far better than humans.
- Pain Transference: Werewolves can absorb and alleviate pain from other people/creatures.
- Memory Transference: Werewolves transfer memories by inserting claws into nape of an individual's neck.
The werewolves of Teen Wolf have also exhibited limited telepathy (see Beta section above).
An Alpha Werewolf's eyes glow red.
Excluding red, the eye glow variations are unlimited for Betas and Omegas and do not follow any set pattern or rule.
Blue and yellow eyes are the other variations seen to date.
When asked what the variations mean Jeff Davis said in 2012 - "We're keeping it mysterious for now. But I think of it like each Jedi has their own color lightsaber."
During the writing of Season 3, eye color has become a major plot point and is now described by Davis as "Very Important".
In advance of the Season 3 debut, MTV released a series of teaser trailers. One included a single individual's eye going through all the known werewolf color shifts before shifting to a swirling black color.
We expect definitive answers on what the various colors mean during the first half of Season 3.
The werewolf pack hierarchy is made up of one alpha (male or female). Next in line are the betas.
The alpha is the only one who leads and makes all the decisions that the entire pack follows.
Werewolves become physically stronger and more powerful once they join a pack. This is stated several times during Season 1 and is the overriding theme of Season 2.
An Alpha needs three Betas to form a basic pack.
Pack membership is voluntary but failing to join leaves the werewolf weaker (see Omega above) and vulnerable to attack.
Apparently it is possible to have an entire pack of Alpha werewolves. The dynamics of how such a pack forms or operates is unclear.
- Scott McCall, bitten by Peter Hale (Beta to Omega)
- Isaac Lahey, bitten by Derek (Beta)
- Erica, bitten by Derek (Beta; Presumed Dead)
- Boyd, bitten by Derek (Beta)
- Derek Hale, born werewolf (Beta to Alpha)
- Laura Hale, born werewolf (Beta to Alpha; Deceased)
- Peter Hale, born werewolf (Beta - Former Alpha)
- Jackson Whittemore, bitten by Derek (Beta)
- Deucalion (Alpha)
- Cora, Derek's little sister (werewolf status unknown)
- So far the Observed Effects of Wolfsbane include the power to hold an Alpha, Laura Hale, in full wolf form after death. It made Scott short of breath and seemingly caused a partial transformation. A wolfsbane tipped bullet poisoned and almost killed Derek.
- Mountain Ash
- Exhibits control over werewolves and other supernatural creatures. Dr. Deaton says it keeps folks like Derek from causing trouble.