Alice Oscura, Featured Writer
Warning: Major Spoilers Ahead
This one was definitely a pleasant surprise for me. I am aware that it was released just over a year ago and I am more than late to the party. However, there’s no time like the present to express just how much I enjoyed the heck out of this six-episode Peacock series, Wolf Like Me.
Falling under the category of comedy, romance, drama and fantasy, the series stars Isla Fisher (Confessions of a Shopaholic, Wedding Crashers) and Josh Gad (Frozen, Pixels) in the roles of Mary and Gary. I know, can you get anymore cheesy? But trust me in the long run it works and it’s kind of cute in my opinion.
Since the death of his wife Lisa seven years ago, widower Gary (Gad) and his 11-year-old daughter Emma (Ariel Donoghue) still struggle with the unbearable weight of their grief in different ways. It’s obvious that Gary’s relationship with his daughter is strained and Emma’s behaviour makes the situation all the more difficult for the single father who’s barely able to keep it together. Things begin to change drastically in their lives after a couple of freak accidents and strange coincidences cause him to constantly cross paths with widow Mary (Fisher). Mary comes with her own baggage, complications and a furry, dark secret. Once Gary discovers that Mary is a werewolf, his terror quickly melts away into love. However, as the threat of constant danger of the wolf looms over them, Mary fears that she might soon endanger Gary and Emma.
First of all, with this unexpected pairing, the last thing that the audience would ever suspect is the fact that Gad and Fisher have all the necessary chemistry that this little gem needs to pull the attention of the audience. They work so well together onscreen that you wouldn’t even notice the simplistically styled dialogue. The series is easily addicting and binge-able since each episode’s runtime is just under 30 minutes. One of the main strengths is that Wolf Like Me is able to execute just enough humour to be amusing but not take the attention or importance away from the seriousness of the drama unfolding. And this is despite the fact that we are dealing with a story that dips its toes into the fantasy genre with the werewolf plot.
There’s something relatable in the story for everyone. You have the stifling grief that can be seen from both sides, namely Gary as a widowed single father and Mary who not only blames herself for the death of her husband but was just getting ready to take that step that most married couples do when they are finally ready to commit to start trying to have children. Mary’s sense of loss extends even further into the necessity of isolating herself from her family in order to protect them from her werewolf persona. There is the loneliness of being afraid to connect with someone emotionally and physically because of her dark secret.
Also in the mix is Gary’s troubled relationship with his daughter Emma. His need to make even the most mundane tasks like the preparation of a sandwich for Emma’s school lunch a big deal only managed to create a barrier between the two, making Emma feel like she couldn’t relate to her father. On the other hand, Gary’s constant guilt over his actions after the death of his wife in addition to not being emotionally open with Emma causes a further divide. Emma also deals with panic attacks and a psychiatrist who just prescribes different medications that have almost deadly effects without actually getting to the root of her problems.
When it comes to the werewolf aspect of the series, don’t expect too much in terms of seeing a full-on transformation as such. As a matter of fact, you don’t actually get to see Mary in werewolf form until the final episode. The werewolf’s look isn’t too bad, and it was particularly cool to see that her love for Gary and Mary prevented her from attacking them. You do get a vicious attack sequence also in the episode but can’t say that the victims didn’t deserve what was coming to them.
To sum it up, Wolf Like Me is a uniquely styled werewolf romance story that’s cute, enjoyable, sensitive and yet manages to maintain a sense of urgency and danger on the side. Last but certainly not least is the cool soundtrack for the ending scene from the band Queens of the Stone Age “Fortress” track from their album Villains. The song develops a deep significance for Gary, Mary and Emma as they begin to come to terms with not only Emma finally discovering the truth but also the possibility of them becoming a family.
Wolf Like Me was renewed for a second season and actor Josh Gad revealed on his social media that the shooting wrapped up on late October of 2022. Release date is set for January of 2024 but there’s no telling if this will be affected by the recent chain of events with the strikes occurring in Hollywood. We’ll just have to wait and see what develops. For now you can watch Season 1 of Wolf Like Me on the US streaming platform Peacock and it’s also available on Amazon Prime Video.
Alice’s Score: 9.5 out of 10
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Dark Alice has an old soul and a curious mind. I believe that anyone can be a hero and that the good guys should always win! I dislike cruelty to animals and think that they have far superior qualities to humans. My motto is there is no future without the past. I also have a weird penchant for Paranormal TV shows even though the slightest sound makes me jump. I enjoy writing reviews and throwing in fun facts to pique the readers’ curiosity. My ultimate goal in life would be to become a published writer one day. Read More