After an explosive season premiere last week, ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.‘ returns with another installment that sees some familiar faces returning and a good bit of side swapping. However, despite having some key moments throughout the episode that knocked it out of the park, the whole thing just seemed like it was going through the motions in order to get to the next huge reveal coming next week.
In the episode titled ‘Heavy Is The Head,’ we primarily followed mercenary Lance Hunter who sought out retribution for his friend Isabelle Hartley, who perished while retrieving the 084 known as the Obelisk. Though the S.H.I.E.L.D. team was able to acquire the item last week, Carl “Crusher” Creel AKA The Absorbing Man bested the agents and obtained the item for HYDRA, but at a price. That’s when the team had to move hastily as Creel’s anatomy was quickly coming undone and put everyone around him in danger.
Once again, one of the best parts about the episode was Agent Fitz. Everybody is still hurting from Simmons’ departure, as Skye makes abundantly clear when she said that her former colleague left all of them, but obviously no one is hurting more than her other half. But rather than dealing with it all together, the team is constantly walking on eggshells with Fitz. That is, until Mac approaches him and treats with patience and respect. Fitz is able to work more productively with Mac at his side trying to understand him better rather than putting on the kid gloves. At this point, anything good happening to Fitz makes me feel good because he’s had such a rough time lately. Damn, I still can’t get over this part of the new season, but the writers are just doing such a great job with this stuff.
Another cool part of the episode was the special effects used for the Absorbing Man. The sequence that saw the bullet from Hunter’s gun bounce off of Creel’s metal head was just super cool. Sometimes the special effects on this show can be lacking, but this time around, things looked pretty great. And then Coulson’s explanation for Creel’s state by the end of the episode was very well thought out because it hinted that the villain could return in the future. I hope he does because there’s some great potential in the possibility of bringing the character to the big screen.
Oh, and I can’t go on without mentioning Skye’s line about Creel: “I doubt it, you seen the guy? He’s jacked! He can turn any part of his body into any material!” I cracked up at that part because it was very reminiscent of a conversation from ‘Mallrats’ (which is my favorite Kevin Smith movie) about superhero sex organs between Brodie and Stan Lee. Though there’s a ton of great action and drama in ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,’ sometimes the comedy is on point, especially when it seems like something that would come straight from the viewers. “Marvel: Your Universe” indeed!
But as for the rest of the episode, it was mostly filled with tidbits of upcoming storylines. Multiple storylines isn’t a problem, but when you have too many of them to juggle in one episode, then that’s when things could get too complicated. It was cool to see Raina return and to discover who her new boss is, but that could’ve been made to be a smaller part of the episode to leave us in more suspense. And then throwing in the scene with Coulson and May in his office could have been saved for another time. I know that the alien writing is connected to the Obelisk, but that stuff could have been called back upon a little further down the road when there wasn’t as many important things going on. That’s not to say that that particular storyline isn’t important. I’m just saying that out of everything that happened in the episode, that’s the one that could have been held off.
As I said in the beginning, when it was all said and done, this episode just felt like it was made to bridge the pilot to the third episode, which appears to answer a question that has been on all of our minds: What happened to Simmons? I can’t wait to get into that stuff more because based on that promo that we saw at the end of this week’s episode, it looks like business is about to pick up.
‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ starring Brett Dalton, Ming-Na Wen, Iain De Caestecker, Elizabeth Henstridge, Chloe Bennet, and Clark Gregg airs on Tuesdays at 9:00pm on ABC.