There is no doubt in my mind that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is at its best when it gives up its weekly search for alien macguffins and lets the relationships between its characters take center stage.
For me, the highlight of the episode (besides the Bobbi/May showdown and Skye kicking ass at the cabin) was the confrontation between Gonzalez and Coulson. The show is obviously about Coulson and his team and I expected to be on Coulson’s side but I wasn’t expecting to be so annoyed with what Mark Greig has decided should be called the Agents of H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F.
Gonzalez seems to have only two problems with Coulson: the fact that he was brought back to life by alien technology, and the fact that he was always Fury’s favorite. Dial down the Jan Brady, Gonzalez, you’re a grown ass man. As to Coulson’s alientastic resurrection, Coulson wasn’t very happy about that himself. I can’t help but think the whole S.H.I.E.L.D. versus H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. conflict could probably be solved with a weekend retreat and a professional mediator.
Thus far, the biggest disagreement between the two organizations is how to deal with Skye and others like her. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is putting in overtime to make Inhumans mutants by another name (they obviously can’t be mutants by the name of mutants as Fox owns X-Men). It’s not quite working for me. The difference between the Inhumans and the X-Men, at least in the MCU and the current continuity of X-Men movies is that mutants were born that way (cue Gaga) whereas Inhumans chose to become what they are, with one, Skye-shaped exception. Both Skye and Raina seemed to be a little more than human (they could both hold the Diviner without Hulking out) but nothing started shaking until after Skye’s terragenesis. Fortunately, it looks like we’re set to learn more about them next week as Skye is whisked off to Gordon’s School for Inhuman Youngsters.
But back to S.H.I.E.L.D. vs. H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. Right now we have the alien intolerant H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. and Cal’s roving bad of c-list bad guys with Team Coulson uncomfortably stuck in the middle. The contrast they’re trying to make between H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. and S.H.I.E.L.D. is not quite working for me. They’re trying to paint H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. as the intolerant ones, but the sad fact is that S.H.I.E.L.D. isn’t the beacon of tolerance and kumbayaness necessary to make us really judge H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. that harshly. Unless it turns out that Calderon shot Skye on Gonzalez’s orders and not on his own volition. Then I will have some very nsfw things to say about H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F.
The cabin fight was really great, although I couldn’t help but think H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. just could have taken out Skye’s communications and sent Bobbi in with a “S.H.I.E.L.D. comms are down but
Skye was horrified at what she did to Calderon, but she’s just been barely beginning to control her powers. She managed to fight hand to hand with that H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. agent without downing so much as a sapling. Calderon shot at her. Of course her instinct was to protect herself and, as of now, that instinct involves things shaking. She should cut herself some slack. She’s still learning. And honestly, if he was going to shoot her, Calderon deserved to be impaled.
Intel and Assets
-- Bobbi slid her phone across the floor to distract HYDRA. There’s an app for that.
-- I loved the detail that Skye was staying at a cabin originally built by Bruce Banner.
-- Simmons’ summer internship with Hydra seemed to pay off. She was able to fool Bobbi. BOBBI. She had good reason to look self satisfied as Bobbi passed out.
-- Gonzalez doesn’t know Fury is alive. Coulson didn’t know Gonzalez was alive. They both sort of suck at their jobs.
May: “The last person who betrayed me, I broke his larynx.”
Gonzalez: “Let’s just hope we don’t live to regret this, Agent Morse.”
Hartley: “Let’s just hope we live.”
three and a half out of four S.P.Y. A.G.E.N.C.I.E.S.
sunbunny, in this week for Mark Greig
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