Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. S01E06 “FZZT” Discussion

Posted by Matthew on November 06, 2013
Television

Agents of SHIELD

Another new episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the ambitious and annoying to type Marvel Universe show, aired last night. Let’s discuss!

Spoilers ahead. Obviously.

Gelling Like A… Something That Rhymes With Gelling

So the team is finally settling into their roles. We’ve know that Fitz and Simmons are the nerds and Skye is the audience insert and Coulson is the leader but now we know why there are two fighters, Ward is the bodyguard agent while May is the wetwork agent. Defence and offence, respectively. That’s a good thing too since their roles were somewhat muddled at first.

More importantly though the team is coming together as a team, having inside jokes that they all share, are able to poke fun at one another, and also immediately know who is going to do what in any given situation, and as a result we do. I’m sure Fitz had every intention of jumping after Simmons however as soon as Ward was on screen everyone, including us, knew it was going to be him.

I like it.

Callbacks, Callbacks, Callbacks

he plot of this episode revolved around a Chitauri virus and there were many direct references to The Avengers. The level of reference to the movies has varied in each episode so far, this is one of the heavier one.

Maybe we should start referring to time frames in the universe as “Before New York” and “After New York”.

Anyway, it’s nice to see it when they are doing it right.

There’s also a nice scene at the end between Coulson and May where we get to see Coulson’s scar from being stabbed by Loki. It’s a nice moment between them as well as pretty big clue as to what’s going on with him. Or rather a clue as to what’s not going on.

Coulson

So he’s not a robot. We’ve seen his scar so we know it’s the same body. We also now know that he knows that he was dead for more than just the few seconds that they told him and he knows something is different, that he is different. He puts himself through a physical to find out why and it comes up inconclusive and it’s May, the other battle scarred veteran, who points out that going through that kind of thing will change a man.

She also hints at her own past (and the reasons she was riding a desk at the start of the season) and “how long it took her to move past it”. I’m looking forward to seeing the episode where they explore her past.

But back to the main point, Coulson doesn’t seem to be a robot despite all the heavy handed references to that idea so far. So here’s another idea, he’s back because of something that Tony Stark did. Rusty. Iron in his blood. Maybe Tony built something that is keeping him alive. Maybe we’ll even get a guest turn by Robert Downey Jr.

Yeah ok I’ll put the pipe down now, but the rest of it fits!

Other Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

It helps that I am a fan of Titus Welliver but I was also glad to see him back as Agent Blake, reprising the role from the Item 47 One Shot. I’ve said all along one of my favourite things about the Marvel Universe is continuity and I’d much rather see them use assets they’ve already introduced, where appropriate, when possible.

There’s also slight hints at the structure of S.H.I.E.L.D., level seven agents such as Coulson and Blake seem to be in charge of various areas. The stinger for next weeks episode says we’ll get a better idea of this next week when we meet someone from level eight, Victoria Hand.

Also, the post credits scene between Coulson and Blake? “That’s not the Cuolson I used to know!”? Bear with me here, but we know that Captain America: The Winter Soldier involves some internal division and strife within S.H.I.E.L.D. and we know that Victoria Hand was second in command of S.H.I.E.L.D. under Norman Osborne during the Dark Avengers storyline in the comics, and we know that the team is going in to do some cleanup in the wake of Thor: The Dark World. We’re getting set up for a much bigger crossover with Captain America: The Winter Soldier right? Hell, if victoria Hand really is in the series maybe we’re getting set up for Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

Am I the only one that is thinking this? Hopefully this becomes more clear next week.

Location, Location, Location

Just short note here but since we’ve already seen The Slingshot where they dispose of things they deep too dangerous and now we’ve seen The Sandbox where all the scientists are to study things that are interesting but not so dangerous that they need to be slingshotted, I’m curious what other locations are going to come up.

Basically my point here is that I’d like to see The Triskellion. I’m sure that’s happening in Captain America: The Winter Soldier first though.

Conclusions

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. continues to improve. I do really hope that it continues on this trajectory because if it does then we’re going to see some stunning television later on in this season.

I like where they are going with Coulson and where i think they are going with S.H.I.E.L.D. itself and I’m interested in Melinda May’s background, all positive.

The only problem with all the crossovers with the movies is that the series may never truly stand on its own if it doesn’t branch out a little more, but it’s a chicken and egg situation, either it’s part of the universe in a real way or it’s not. I don’t quite know how I feel about that just yet but I’m choosing to remain optimistic.

We’ll see you again next week for “The Hub”

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