Who’d Have Thunk It, SHIELD is starting to work!
Gone are the endless references to The Avengers (Ok not completely, but now they at least have some context). Ward gets a legitimately badass moment. Skye is pushed to the side for a bit and the greatest mystery of the series as been put to bed. Yes, that’s right, I finally know which one is Fitz and which one is Simmons.
Snark aside, with FZZT it appears that the show runners finally understand that we came for Avengers references but we’re staying for the characters and now that familiar Whedonesque family unit is starting to reveal itself.
The scene of the trio doing their impressions of Ward is an example of something we should have seen weeks ago. The team just hanging out. A lot of the joy of Whedon’s Firefly was seeing the crew squabbling at the dinner table and that’s what that felt like. Ward is boring, so having the rest of the team mock him gives us an in and suddenly we’re relating to the characters. Then of course Ward throws himself out of a plane and buys at least four episodes of goodwill.
I think Simmons’ brush with death came a bit too soon. For one thing, I only just got her name right but it just felt too early for a cast member to bite it. Had we been maybe twelve episodes in we might have been a bit more concerned for her, but even saying that I was mighty impressed with Elizabeth Henstridge and Iain de Caestecker. Simmons asking Coulson to tell her Father about her demise first was easily the emotional high point of the series. Had we been just a tad more invested that could have been a powerhouse moment.
The show still looks like ass but the really problematic issues look to be righting themselves which is a relief. The boring and vague Centipede nonsense was nowhere to be seen and in it’s place was something a lot more interesting.
The great Titus Welliver (Lost’s Man in Black amongst other roles) appeared to warn Coulson about orders. Based on that and the recent Winter Soldier trailer, there is a big grey question mark hanging over the motivations of S.H.I.E.L.D. If that’s the thread that AoS starts pulling at then I’m all in.
SHIELD doesn’t look it’s going to be genuinely great anytime soon but it has come leaps and bounds since the pilot. FZZT did what good genre serials should. It gave us a good Monster of the Week episode and teased at bigger things to come.
And Melinda May interrogating a boy scout was brilliant.