Agents of SHIELD: Devils You Know

Well that sucked.

We knew Agent May was coming back, and that something had to tie her into SHIELD but good this time. We knew we had to get her a major motivation after resolving her last big issue, which was killing an Inhuman child. And we knew that somehow the relationship between her and Andrew, which seemed to never be working, and yet was never anyone’s fault, and there was no reason it shouldn’t, had to be resolved. But did it have to be like that?

I suppose it did. Andrew’s death was well done, both devastating  because we lost the character, who I didn’t realize I cared about so much until he was blown up. (It speaks to how much many people cared about him, that most reviews of the episode suggest he’s not dead.) Another reason we don’t want him to be dead? Because his death was basically pointless. Anyone with brains could have told Hunter there was no way he was taking out Ward in episode four of the season. No way. Just stand down, and let him get away this time. But no. Hunter went off the deep end, acted like a fool, and got the love of May’s life killed. That’s not going to patch up so easily.6398177_marvels-agents-of-shield-review_9bbc4075_m

This is also a good lead up to moving Hunter and Bobbi to their own TV show. I had wondered, after ABC stalled on a third low rated Marvel TV spin-off, how the writers panned to work them back out one ABC changed their minds. I’m not saying they’re going to be gone in an episode or two (though the fast pacing of this season suggests it might not be that far-fetched to think it might happen.) I expect Hunter will remain part of the team for at least the rest of this half season, if not until Civil War, to get maximum mileage out of May’s rage at him for his hotheaded stupidity. But with Andrew gone, this show just got a little smaller, and it won’t be long before there isn’t enough room in this hour for Bobbi, Hunter, May and May’s rage. And If Coulson is choosing, he’s choosing May, every time.

Rosalind: Do you really have a laser finger?
Coulson: That’s classified.

Speaking of Coulson, I am loving the back and forth between him and Rosalind. It’s about time I felt like Coulson was up against an equal. In the first season, part of the problem was that none of the enemies felt like they were possible real foes of Coulson, just cartoon buffoon ones. The second season was more focused on the Inhuman rise than ever coming up with a proper Big Bad, though Ward worked hard to be that foe, and Kyle McLaughlin ate the scenery with gusto. But here Coulson is facing someone who is much like he once was. A head of a government agency, who considers themselves the best at what they do, with no clue of the depths beneath them. Coulson got his comeuppance when Hydra showed him how blind his own agency was this whole time. What will be Rosalind’s comeuppance? Time, and Civil War, will tell.CONSTANCE ZIMMER, ANDREW HOWARD, CHLOE BENNET, CLARK GREGG, HENRY SIMMONS

Speaking of Inhumans, this week started out this episode with Alisha, the self cloner from last year who was on the wrong side of the Inhuman line. I was flabbergastered she had magically become part of the team. I started to wonder if we’d had a huge time jump and now Daisy finally had her Secret Warriors? But no. Apparently seeing Lincoln being flagged on TV got Alisha to get in touch with Daisy, and this was her first recruiting mission. It will probably also be her last. The body count was high on the Inhuman side–the nice couple, and the one whose powers we’ll never know we’ll never know for sure, other than being a divining rod for other Inhumans.

So–who is Lash? Do we think it’s just a random person, someone who will be revealed in a few episodes who will meet the team, and stalk Daisy? It would be fun if it turned out to be someone on Rosalind’s team. (that moment when Mac said “It could be anyone,” and then Ros opened the curtain was too obvious. I doubt it’s her. but it could be her second in command, no?)

ELIZABETH HENSTRIDGE, IAIN DE CAESTECKER

And finally, Simmons and Fitz. After the two of them as the emotional anchor of the episode for the last couple of weeks, they ceded the floor to May and Andrew, and were happy to obsess over what color ziplock bags which samples should go into, and throw around passive aggressive shade: “It hurts when people won’t tell you what’s going on.” But next week they’re back front and center, as the episode trailer suggests Elizabeth Henstridge will be giving us a tour de force performance as we watch her learn to survive on out on the alien planet she learned to call home, to the point she wants to go back. I’m sorry Andrew won’t be there for more therapy sessions to learn when the moment was she gave up hope. But I am starting to be very interested in what she needs to go back for.

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