The opening scene starts the episode out quite strongly. Not only is scene stealer Colin back and as cranky as ever, but Dr. Swineheart and Snow are also in attendance. I liked how the seemingly invincible Big Bad Wolf was on the cusp of death (and apparently did die at one point) and is still licking his wounds from the butt beating he received from Bloody Mary. Snow does try to get us to change our tactics and be the kinder, gentler Bigby. Fat chance! It’s time for some hairy, angry justice!
Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen…at least not for a while. It’s plain to see that the brakes on the story hit pretty hard early on. A conversation with Narissa that goes nowhere; a conversation with Beauty and Beast that does nothing more than make me hate them; a conversation with the Butcher to find out some shady dealings by the Crooked Man…see a trend? Considering how the last episode, A Crooked Mile, ended in such tense fashion this does not bode well at all.
One of the things that Tell Tale does the best in their more recent games is to give you several ulcer inducing decisions to make. These decisions shape not only the story, but also your character. In Sheep’s Clothing had none of that. There were no no-win situations that made me cringe just thinking about what the outcomes may be. Also, there is normally a very clear pausing point when these decisions happen; this will kind of let you know what to look out for when gauging how you did versus other players at the end of the episode (I LOVE this part!). In Sheep’s Clothing only had one of these and the other measured decisions just happened during conversations. Disappointing.
A few new characters were introduced in episode four. My favorite of which being the Jersey Devil; his obvious douchery belays the fact that he is a badass in a glamour. Once provoked, Jersey gets ugly! He’s a skinless, bloodied mess with deer antlers. I liked him quite a lot, but he wasn’t used nearly enough. Not to mention the fact that he wasn’t even mentioned as being a character at all, much less one of the Crooked Man’s main henchmen. It just seemed as a weird choice. The other two new faces, the Butcher and Tiny Tim, were interesting touches but were under utilized. I did enjoy how Tell Tale is mixing in outside the box characters from other tales in with the tried and true fables we grew up on. It’s a stroke of genius and it’s nothing that I haven’t come to expect from Tell Tale.
I will say that once you actually get to the Crooked Man the scene is highly climactic. After finally finding the door to the Crooked Man’s lair (it’s glowing a severe, pulsating blue…it really shouldn’t have been that hard) and busting into his secret meeting, we find a room full of ne’er-do-wells. All of the thugs and cronies that we have been matched up against up to this point are in one room…not to mention the Crooked Man himself! I will say, however, that whenever the credits did roll, I was quite stunned. Not only was the episode a meager hour and a half long but I desperately wanted to dole out some sweet, sweet justice to these crum-bums! No such luck…this time.
I must say that In Sheep’s Clothing was not my favorite episode of The Wolf Among Us. Frankly, there were more questions raised than were answered here and it left me wondering how in the world Tell Tale is going to wrap all of this up in another two hour episode. Is the Crooked Man even responsible for the murders? I doubt it, but who knows? All I know is that I feel like I am in a trap. I am not nearly as invested in this story as I am The Walking Dead and my interest has waned quite a bit since the first, ball grabbing episode. However, I am now too far in to pull out now and need to see this to the end…which I am very much interested in seeing. It’s a paradox I know, but I’m finishing regardless.
The Wolf Among Us is heading into the home stretch now and things should get very interesting for the finale. I will say that the conclusion, whether or not it lives up to the hype that I have developed over the course of the story, is behind a gun full of disappointment bullets. I do have faith in what Tell Tale’s vision is for this game and they have earned our trust. We only have to wait for another month or so to see if this wolf had teeth or if it was in sheep’s clothing all along.