We’re still playing catch up from the firehose of news known as San Diego Comic Con. We ran through the Superhero Soup of Marvel on Monday. But that wasn’t Marvel’s only major panel. After all, they also have the entire line on Netflix, including Daredevil, and Jessica Jones, plus the upcoming IronFist, Luke Cage and Punisher series.
And then there’s ABC, which at this point is back down to just Agents of SHIELD, despite the MCU and Disney’s push to force the network to be fruitful and multiply their shows. The truth is, Marvel’s Agent Carter, Marvel’s Most Wanted and the disappeared down the memory hole Marvel’s Damage Control were all victims of Disney oversaturating ABC with properties that weren’t getting off the ground, The failure of The Muppets (which never recovered from those first disastrous weeks) was far too close in alignment to the way Agents of SHIELD originally kicked off, with a full six weeks of marketing bombardment, and then a complete fizzle as those first few episodes failed to live up to the hype.
To be fair, the only thing Carter had going for it was Hayley Atwell, and once ABC decided to give her a new vehicle, that was it for the rest of it. For some, the idea of Mockingbird and Hunter getting their own spin-off was a joy, but just as many fans I’ve spoken too seemed perplexed that anyone thought they could hold a series aloft by themselves, or that SHIELD was somehow better off without them. As for Damage Control, that it was even suggested that people might want to watch a show about the janitors who clean up after Iron Man might just sum up everything wrong with the shows that wind up on ABC to begin with.
Continue reading Agents of SHIELD and the Rise of Ghost Rider
No, Ghostrider isn’t coming to AoS this year. That’s the fire chains that we saw “Hellfire” as the hapless Australian James called himself last season.
You know, technically we didn’t see him die at the end of the season last year, did we? Perhaps he’ll be returning as next season’s big bad?
Or is this just a cool image that Agents of SHIELD is using to get us hyped for their appearance at SDCC?
Well begun is half done, and this two-part finale certainly started off with a bang, dropping us into the middle of the SHIELD team stopping Hive and his minions from firing a nuke. And by the first half an hour it looked like SHIELD might have gained the upperhand, capturing Hive and stopping the nuclear launch. But we knew it wouldn’t be that easy. And it starts as a game of pass the cross.
YoYo: This is not about superspeed. This is about your turtle speed.
We knew Hive wouldn’t stay in the gel matrix, and that bringing him to SHIELD HQ was basically beginning a horror movie set on the base. And by the end of the hour that’s exactly where we were. With Daisy on her knees begging to be let back into the Hive collective and everything. It was ugly.
What wasn’t ugly was the Daisy-Hive fight that followed. Once again, Chloe Bennet’s fighting abilities have matured to greater heights, and her one on one with Brett Dalton, who has also improved by leaps and bounds over the three seasons, which was partly powered and partly hand to hand combat was a highlight of the evening. But with Elena’s cross being passed from character to character, the question was which one would the roulette wheel land on?
Continue reading Agents of SHIELD: Absolution/Ascension
Captain America: Civil War has come, and this week, Agents of SHIELD found themselves dealing with the fall out from the movie’s main plot point of registering “powered people.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, despite being the head of the bureaucratic agency that technically is part of enforcing the new laws, Coulson, who is the biggest Captain America stan there is, sided with Team Cap that the government shouldn’t be registering his “Secret Warriors.”
Talbot: “The president sent me. The Sokovia Accords are the law of the land now. He’s concerned you may have some Undocumented Enhanced Assets working for you.”
it was a nice touch to start out with Coulson mourning Caps’ new fugitive status and reading Peggy Carter’s obit. (And despite the movie series continued refusals to acknowledge the TV shows, it makes a lot of sense that the trickle down from the accords would cover the Inhumans.) But much like the plot of the Captain America movie was a side show distraction from the main event–that is, pitting the superheroes against each other in a fight, General Talbot’s arrival at the base for an inspection and “taking inventory” of Coulson’s powered peeps was a distraction from the main plot, which featured Daisy tricking Lincoln into breaking out and flying to come see her (and be captured by Hive)–only to reveal that it was Daisy who was being tricked. Lincoln didn’t get off that jet to meet Hive. Lash did. (“Rasta Hulk is your husband?” may have been one of the best lines of the evening.)
Raise you hand if you thought Lash v Hive was endgame for this season? When the fight came a week early, it was a sign that no, the mess would not be so easily cleaned up. A massive disappointment, especially when it became obvious that Lash not only was impervious to Hive’s parasites, but was also a living antidote, curing Daisy by sucking them all out of her. It was all too easy an answer, so the show killed him off, James taking him out with his fire infused chainwhip just as he got Daisy on the QuinJet and they were about to fly back to safety. May’s grieving over his body was a heartbreaker.
Continue reading Agents of SHIELD: Emancipation
In terms of an episode, Agents of SHIELD‘s “Failed Experiments” was an exercise in both what works about the show , and its own failings. There were some seriously thrilling moments, especially once the Kree walked in. But in between the awesome sauce moment and the hilarious points (like May’s scene with James), we had some things that were enough to make anyone scream
May: Why is everyone making this about themselves?
Seriously–May was the voice of reaso this week. Both Mack and Lincoln were well night insufferable this week, trying to make Daisy’s defection all about themselves. Boys, sometimes girl just don’t choose you. Deal with it. I will say that Mack’s was certainly the more sympathetic of the two. The show’s excuse was that Lincoln hasn’t know Daisy nearly as long as the rest of them. but the truth is, Lincoln as a character is annoying and as an actor is dead wood half the time. At least Bennet has chemistry with Mack.
But the fact is, going off the reservation like this because you have emotions is not how this works. (Say it with me know: THAT’S NOT HOW ANY OF THIS WORKS!) Mack disobeyed a direct order. He’s lucky he didn;t get his ass killed. And moreover, by doing so, he cemented Daisy’s choice to pick the other side. Meanwhile, Fitz basically laid out the case for Lincoln on how this was just not ok. He disobeyed Coulson, and he fried the base to boot. One can only hope that someone walks in and sneezes on Lincoln hard.
Continue reading Agents of SHIELD: Failed Experiments
With three seasons of Agents of SHIELD nearly complete and a fourth one on the way–it was greenlit during the dark time on this blog–there seems to be only one constant: change.
Lincoln: Just needs a quick reboot.
And a quick reboot this has been. Moving Skye/Daisy/Quake/Tremors from the Good Guy team to the Bad Guy team has done wonders for the season, more than I could have anticipated. Her hanging out with Hive/Ward at the beginning of the episode was a surprising moment of pay off from those first early episodes I didn’t even know we needed, or that they could come back and work so well for the show later on. it’s brought the relationships of everyone on the team to the fore, from Coulson, having to accept that Daisy has betrayed them, to May, who demands he stop treating her differently than the rest of them. Mack only gets more protective of the others as those around him drop away like flies. And FitzSimmons cross the event horizon, because life is short, and they could run into Daisy or Hive any day and be killed.
Except when that happens (and boy howdy, does it happen), it turns out that Prince’s warning that we could all die any day is not to be–at least not today. And that’s partly because, for all that Hive is an addictive parasite making the Inhumans feel good for obeying his orders in a creep show display of power, they are still themselves deep down somewhere. And Daisy loves Fitz and Simmons. They were once her family. (There’s a *lot* of family issue stuff this week, including Lincoln’s beautifully jealous line about “the three of you can live as a small messed up family again” to May and Coulson.) Just because she’s got a new family doesn’t mean she doesn’t still care. And in a tour de force moment, Brett Dalton channeled Dillon Casey so well, for a moment I forgot Simmons wasn’t talking to Will. At least they got to say goodbye before she shot Ward at point-blank range like she always promised she would.
Continue reading Agents of SHIELD: The Singularity
Hey look, it’s that episode ABC would like us all to know we’ve all been waiting for! ABC saw thew excitement on Twitter when they first announced a third spin-off of SHIELD, and many assumed it would be based on Daisy’s new team, and the comic series The Secret Warriors. (They also saw the massive disappointment when it was revealed to be Marvel’s Hart to Hart instead, nearly scuttling their spin-off.) So it’s not that surprising that now that we’re having our first episode to bring Daisy’s team together to save our regularly scheduled Marvel heroes, ABC is touting it as the episode WE’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR.
YoYo: What is…Hydra?
Daisy: Kidnapping inhumans, global terrorism, all around bad dudes.
But of course, it’s not always that simple. Hive, as we know, is a parasite. And ABC’s marketing department turns out to be pretty damn talented at misdirection. And for once, that talent actually worked in the show’s favor, instead of against it.
But before we get to THAT BIG DAMN TWIST, and all the very interesting avenues it opens up, let us take this time above the fold to appreciate Powers Boothe. His Gideon Malick was a gravely voiced, silver-haired menace, the sort of old school entrenched power of Hydra that a show like this plays to the clichéd hilt. And though there were certainly times when that was his role, his performance was always riveting on-screen. Furthermore, they gave him a fantastic scene to go out on. It couldn’t last–Gideon Malick, Agent of SHIELD? A fun idea to toy with, but not one they could allow to play out. But still, the interrogation room one on one scene with Clark Gregg was a reminder of how great a performance both them can turn in when given the material and the talent to work with. And for just a short moment, the two of them found common ground together. It could have been the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
Continue reading Agents of SHIELD: The Team