|They were determined to stop Pierce Brosnan singing ever again|
Where are those happy days, they seem so hard to find. I tried to reach for you, but you have closed your mind. Whatever happened to our love? I wish I understood. It used to be so nice, it used to be so good.
You can't go wrong with a bit of Sweden's finest export, unless it is being butchered by a former James Bond in which case you can most definitely go wrong with a bit of Sweden's finest export. So very wrong. You're probably wondering what any of this has to do with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s cracking season finale. Well, I've decided that this review will be ABBA themed. Why? I have no idea. I gave up getting my brain to explain itself years ago.
Waterloo! The Inhumans were defeated, S.H.I.E.L.D. won the war!
So, thanks to some manipulation, Jiaying's Inhumans went to war with the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and since Team Attilan contained no main characters it was a decisive victory for Team C. But it was a victory that came at a cost. And I ain't talking about Beardy from H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. I shouted out “HOLY SHIT” a few times during this episode. The loudest was when Mack chopped off Coulson’s hand. I repeat, Mack chopped of Coulson’s hand. When he caught that crystal I thought that the Kree blood formula in his system would save him. Guess not. So how long before Coulson gets a Luke Skywalker-style cyber hand?
Mamma mia, now I really know how crazy you are!
I’m relieved they didn’t drag out the “which side will Skye choose?” drama. I don’t think I could’ve tolerated an entire episode of Skye being pulled back and forth between her family and the Inhumans (as a wise man once said "family don’t end with blood, boy"). Thanks to Raina (R.I.P. flower dress girl) she quickly learned how far off the reservation her mother had gone. This war was never about protecting her people. It was about revenge, pure and simple. To her, S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA were just two sides of the same coin (a coin that is no longer currency) and she held them both responsible for what had been done to her. She wanted them to suffer and she was willing to sacrifice anyone, including her own family, to enact her revenge.
Cal had a dream, a fantasy, to help him through reality
Unless they haven't worked all the imperfections out of the T.A.H.I.T.I. process, I expect this is the last we are going to see of Cal for some time. That's a shame because Kyle MacLachlan has been a great presence this season and I've loved every scene he and Chloe Bennett have had together. The goodbye scene(s) between them really tugged on them old heart strings. I didn't cry, but I came damn near close at times.
Fitz, I'm still free, take a chance on me
So it looks like a Fitz/Simmons relationship is still on the card. Bummer, I was hoping the show would subvert the nice guy cliché and just keep them as friends. Did anyone else feel this was a little rushed? There hasn’t been much development of this storyline lately. It would’ve been okay if Jemma had asked Fitz if they could finally have the talk they’ve been avoiding. It was heavily hinted that Jemma returns Fitz’s feelings for her, but there hasn't really been a lightbulb moment where she came to that realisation. Part of me suspects the writers rushed this development so that what happens at the end of the episode is that tiny bit more tragic.
If I had to do the same again, I would, my friend, Agent 33
Let's take a moment to talk about the amazingness that is Bobbi Morse. Bobbi is a true spy, who knows and accepts the nature of the work she does. She knows that sometimes they will be required to make difficult choices for the greater good. One of those choices was giving up a safe house that could’ve been empty to maintain her cover and save the lives of over twenty agents. Kara suffered as a result of that choice, and I don't doubt that Bobbi feels bad about it on some level. But she doesn’t regret that choice and wasn't going to apologise for it. Especially not while being tortured by someone Grant Ward has been brainwashing into being his submissive reflection. Instead, after giving Ward a piece of her mind, she broke free of her chains, pulled out the needles in her fingers and stabbed Ward in the neck with them, continuing the grand tradition of Ward getting his ass handed to him by the awesome women of S.H.I.E.L.D. in the finales. Please let it be Jemma's turn next season.
Knowing Ward, knowing you (ah-haa)
I don't think that Ward ever really loved Kara. What I think he was looking for was companionship from someone who shared his world view, someone who would not judge, but support him. Basically what he wanted was himself and that is exactly what he made Kara into. Kara was in a vulnerable state when Ward found her. Rather than get her the help that she needed he decided to remake her in his image, which including his warped idea of closure. For Ward, closure is not about accepting what has happened and learning to move forward. It is about revenge. It is about making those who you believed have wronged you suffer. I'm sure he and Jiaying would've gotten along swimmingly. Rather than take some time to reflect and reconsider the effect his actions have had on the people closest to him, Ward is doing what he has always done and blaming other people for the pain and suffering he has caused. Kara's death is on his hands. Not just because he's the one who pulled the trigger, but because he forced this entire situation. He wanted Kara to be like him and that got her killed. But he isn't going to see it that way. This is all S.H.I.E.L.D.'s fault. So now he's going to take charge of HYDRA's biker gang division and get his revenge.
See that girl, watch that scene, digging the Earthquake Queen
I think it is safe to say that, while not complete, Skye's story has now come to the end of its opening chapters. Everything she set out to do has now been done. She has solved the mystery of her past, met her parents, met better surrogate parents, discovered what she is, mastered her new abilities and become a fully fledged S.H.I.E.L.D. agent. Our little baby hacker is all grown up, no longer sitting shotgun. She drives the car now, ready to lead her own team of super-powered agents. I'm so proud of her. Was there really a time when I couldn't stand her? I feel so ashamed of myself.
Beside the victory, that's Simmons' destiny
I get the sense that this was meant to double as a series finale if ABC didn't renew it. There was a touch of finality about most of those closing scenes. Then the shit didn't so much hit the fan as order a full blown nuclear strike against it. Man, it was really careless of S.H.I.E.L.D. and H.U.F.F.L.E.P.U.F.F. to not mount a salvage operation for those crystals. Is there no room left in the budget for a submarine or even just some scuba gear? Forget people getting powers from fish and chips, I want to know what leaving those crystals is going to do to marine life. Is Miami or any other coastal town going to be attacked by giant mutant clown fish? And what the frak has happened to Simmons? Is she going to become one with the strange Kree liquid rock monster thingy? Will this give her powers? Is she going to be next season's big bad? Oh god, Dark Simmons. I never realised how badly I want that until this moment.
Intel and Assets
--What are the odds that Hunter would've been the one to open that door? As revenge plans go that one relied a little too much on sheer chance. What if a random red shirt had opened it?
--Bobbi saying she couldn't do this any more was obviously meant to set up her spin-off, which probably would've centred on her and Hunter quitting S.H.I.E.L.D. to go and pursue their dreams of pop stardom. Thankfully that isn't happening and they are sticking around so expect her to have a swift change of heart early next season, probably after she finds out Simmons is missing.
--I know Daisy Johnson's code name is Quake in the comics, but I really like Tremors, and not just because it is also a kick-ass movie.
--Cal finally went full Hyde and it resembled Dana Carvey on steroids.
-- May reunited with Andrew and went on her first vacation ever (how typical of May to pack a bikini and gun).
--We got three great fights in this episode. First there was Skye vs May, then Bobbi against Ward and Kara and finally Skye against Gingersnaps and her copies. Can we have a Skye/Bobbi/May melee next season?
--Please say that Henry Simmons is going to be a regular next season? He was one of the stars of this episode (and the season as a whole) and deserves to take his rightful place amongst the main cast.
Coulson: “It’s a big boat with poor signage.”
Fitz: “Science, biatch.”
Simmons: "Oh no, Gonzales would never attack a base unprovoked."
Mack: "Right now I'm in a crack heads first, ask questions later frame of mind."
Cal: “You’re better than I imagined, and I imagined you perfect.”
Four out of four Chiquititas. So that's me done for another year. I'll see you all again in the autumn. In the meantime here's some of Sweden's finest export.
Mark Greig has been writing for Doux Reviews since 2011. More Mark Greig.
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