Teeth and eyeballs hit the ground in “Hemlock Grove” werewolf transformation video

A. Quinton — Mar. 31st 2013

This weekend at WonderCon, Netflix teased werewolf fans with a scene from their upcoming 13-episode series Hemlock Grove. For those of us who couldn’t be in Anaheim, IGN has posted the 127-second transformation scene on YouTube. Let’s watch it together, shall we? I hope you haven’t eaten recently – dinner will be served at the end.

Cue the whining from werewolf aficionados who, like myself, have not actually finished reading the book. I know, I know, all that hurly-burly just to arrive at “a regular wolf” is kind of an anticlimax, right? Well, calm yourself: this scene takes place in the first 60 pages of the book (and probably at the end of the second episode), and some people who know my sensibilities and who actually make the time to read for pleasure have told me that things “get better”. I’ll find out for myself, soon – I’m travelling for work this week, so I’ll have some time to finish reading the book before the series premieres on the 19th.

I can’t get behind the “wolf under the skin” style of transformation for reasons too pedantic to discuss here, but as a re-creation of the scene as written, both technically and stylistically, I think this video was excellent. Some of the more gory shots, like the emergence of the muzzle, made me a bit squeamish… but what else was I expecting from the guy who wrote and directed Hostel?

  • HellNotoHemlockGrove

    Another poorly done CGI transformation into a glorified dog. The skin splitting was pretty unique and all but…

    Yeah, sorry but I’ll pass. Unlike the rest of the internet I don’t worship wolves like gods in canine form. This shit won’t pass with me, you give me a werewolf you ACTUALLY PUT EFFORT INTO or I won’t watch.

  • Aunty Donut

    I am a practical effects fan and generally dislike CGI transformations scenes, i also like the aesthetic of the American werewolf or wolfman type creature designs. That being said, I thought this was a rather interesting transformation. It had some originality to it that i can appreciate. I have never seen eyes falling out of a head during a werewolf transformation before and it was rather gory. Some of the aspects of the scene was reminiscent of the transformation from the film The Company of Wolves. I think the best execution of shedding flesh during a transformation was in the film Trick r Treat but for a purely CGI transformation for TV, i think this is done well.

  • LunarCarnivore

    Yeah cuz it takes no effort to make that kind of transformation.

  • I definitely prefer bipedal wolves, but this was pretty rad. I’ll cope.

  • Gothic Guido

    (Negative Nelly incoming) I kind of doubt “Things will get better“ effects wise. I have not read the book but I assume you mean there are different types of wolves or they evolve but I don`t see that happening on a Netflix exclusive series (budget constraints). This series is not for traditional werewolf fans (its for the TnT crowd), there`s no reason they would or should cater to us. I know iv complained about this before on WWN lol but it really bumming me out. This was is first step to some hbo/showtime/amc werewolf show and their really misfiring. I think sexuality has its place in monster horror but my god it shouldn’t be the focus.

  • Gothic Guido

    Have you seen company of wolves? (Its a flesh tearing one) Also my god I love Trick R Treat (sweet dreams)

  • herrer

    This is actually in the novel.

  • Andre

    I thought the transformation was descent, but for that guy to barely show any reactions except awe was kind of unrealistic. I mean the guy in front of him was literally ripped apart, if you think that is real it is kind off gorey.
    Now as for the wolf: well I am probably in the minority here but I am pretty fed up with man-wolves, especially when they are claimed to be hidden or generally unseen. These things are huge and so no way would they just dissappear into myth. And speaking of that, the wolf form is more inline with actual folklore. The man-wolf form is extremely rare for the werewolf and only appears in more recent tales of fiction, not in folklore.