Since it’s first episode, ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.‘ has done a lot of things to make me smile. From Nick Fury’s post-credits scene appearance to Agent May’s little crush on Thor to the fact that Director Coulson apparently hogs the mic at karaoke night, there have been a lot of cute moments in the first TV show set within the continuity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But this week probably takes the cake for awesome references because the opening of this week’s episode paid homage to one of my favorite movies, ‘Pulp Fiction.’ Not a bad way to reintroduce Grant Ward back into the picture, but he wasn’t the only trouble that Coulson and company faced this week.
After facing off against Cal and his team of random villains, Director Coulson had to refocus on Skye and her new Inhuman abilities that could be potentially dangerous to her and her teammates. Meanwhile, Bobbi and Mack continued their work for “the real S.H.I.E.L.D.” by briefing Hunter on their extracurricular activities and delivering intel to their bosses, which includes Edward James Olmos’ Agent Robert Gonzalez. And then of course, there’s the MCU’s equivalent to Bonnie and Clyde in Ward and Agent 33.
The opening of the episode aside, Ward and 33 were the most interesting parts of the episode, which acted primarily as a way to introduce these two characters back into the storyline. There were definitely other things in play this week like Skye being taken out of S.H.I.E.L.D. and being placed into one of Fury’s old safe houses, but after being absent for several episodes, this was a great way to catch us up with whatever the former S.H.I.E.L.D. agents have been up to since San Juan.
The most interesting thing about this pair is that Ward is still a lying psychopath. Though it appears that he’s trying to give Agent 33 her identity back after being brainwashed by Sunil Bakshi and Daniel Whitehall by fixing the short-circuited mask on her face, he’s going about it in the most manipulative way. And every time you think that Ward might be turning over a new leaf, he does something to remind you about how crazy he is. For instance, when he said that he reconciled with his family and conveniently forgot to say that he murdered them. Ward is such a strange character that’s full of surprises. I’m so curious to see where it all goes.
Also, one more quick thing about Agent 33 before I move on: Did anyone else think that she was the MCU’s version of Madame Masque until it was revealed that her real name is Kara? Whitney Frost seems like a character that would fit in so perfectly within the world of ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,’ but I guess that we’re not ready for that yet.
The other really interesting part about this episode was the further strains being put on the relationship between Agents Fitz and Simmons. One criticism from last season was that they were too attached to one another. It was almost annoying in some instances how close they were. Now we’re so far from that thanks to Jemma’s surprising new attitude towards Skye and Inhumans in general and Leo is calling her out on it. The debate about which Avenger Skye could be like was a nice touch and it sort of feels like that this discussion could spread to other parts of the MCU when ‘Captain America: Civil War’ rolls around.
And speaking of civil war, it appears that the show is building towards one between Gonzalez and Coulson as the separate S.H.I.E.L.D. factions are likely to butt heads. When that finally happens, it could be all out war for the show, but I see this having bigger repercussions on this film universe as a whole. We’ve been hearing that ‘Civil War’ will feature governments of the world looking to regulate super-powered beings. Could it all start here on ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’? Might Agent Gonzalez and Tony Stark use Nick Fury’s secrets, especially the one where Phil Coulson is still alive, as an example how not to do this sort of thing? This could lead Agents Coulson, May, Fitz, and Skye to join the anti-registration side with Captain America against Agents Morse, Mack, Simmons, and the rest of “the real S.H.I.E.L.D..” Naturally, this is all speculation, but there is definitely some big things in the works here and we’re likely to have a better idea of what that is exactly after ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ and it’s tie-in episode of this show.
In general, this episode of ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ exists to move the story along. Other than Ward and Kara re-entering the fray, Hunter learning Mack and Bobbi’s secrets, and Skye gaining some new gear that helps her resemble her comic book counterpart more, not much else happened here. But with that being said, at least the story was moved along in an interesting and entertaining way that planted some ideas in the audiences head about where everything could be going in this world.
‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ starring Brett Dalton, Ming-Na Wen, Iain De Caestecker, Elizabeth Henstridge, Adrianne Palicki, Chloe Bennet, and Clark Gregg airs on Tuesdays at 9:00pm on ABC.