This week’s Agents of SHIELD asks a very important question: When spooky apparitions appear sometimes shit happens and who you gonna call? And no, I’m am certainly not done with the Ghostbusters references this season, as it seems that the whole ghostly supernatural angle is going to carry through for a while.
One thing I noticed very early on was this week was decidedly slower than last week. Now I don’t mean that in a bad way and it certainly wasn’t a bad episode, but it was definitely more exposition heavy. On the downside I found my attention waning at certain times but on the other hand we learned a few interesting tidbits.
The biggest revelations came in some of the smaller places. Agent Coulson’s demotion was self inflicted? While from a cynical business perspective having Coulson step down as director works. From a storytelling angle, it artificially creates conflict and makes his field work a lot more logical. The reasoning behind his decision actually makes a damn bit of sense. Aside from SHIELD trying to go public and the obvious ramifications a dead guy running it would have, having Coulson want an Inhuman in charge to defuse the fallout from both last season as well as Captain America: Civil War is necessary.
Oh wait, I completely glossed over that the douchey new head of SHIELD is an Inhuman, didn’t I? Yes, he apparently is a super strong meathead who I don’t totally trust just yet. The way they’ve written the new director carefully rides a line where he could just end up being a normal bureaucrat or someone with a more nefarious endgame in mind. The way the writers have set him up though is just very well done, where many shows would try to make him a villain from the start, here he makes choices that we may not like because of our attachment to the core characters yet every decision makes complete sense from a managerial position.
Another area I am pleased by is the handling of Ghost Rider. It would have been so easy, and frankly I was sure they would go this route, to make the Spirit of Vengeance simply another Inhuman. By retaining his supernatural origins the series is opening a whole new world to explore. Reyes brings up the fact that he sold his soul, but just how far are they willing to follow this thread? The “Ghosts” in this episode seemed pretty tech dependent so it remains to be seen how literal they’re taking this. I’d love to see the more scientifically minded members of the team try to grasp the concept of the devil, afterlife, and magic. Plus with Yoyo being such a devout Catholic I would imagine there is some pretty juicy material to play with there.
Yoyo could become a point of contention for a lot of the team. Aside from the religious elements that are sure to come into play, Mack now realizes that she’s been working with Daisy and effectively been lying to him for months on end. So SHIELD’s pattern of teasing a pairing between characters while everything that can go wrong does continues. So my guess is that by mid season they will either have finally gotten together and become boring like Fitz and Simmons, or one of them will die saving the other. That seems to be the only endgame scenarios for couples on this show.
The biggest repercussion from this week appears to be May completely losing her marbles and being whisked off to who knows where. I would have liked to see a bit more of May on the rampage before the director took her down but maybe that will come later. Oh, and for a government agent, a trained fighter I assume, what the hell was with the director knocking her out by smacking her head into a brick wall? They have sedatives, the icer shots, even a choke out would have been better than concussing an agent and possibly causing long term damage. I know it’s just a show but you could kill someone smashing their head like that.
Actually of the entire episode my favorite moment came all too briefly. When Daisy was chasing Reyes, the stunt of her hanging on top of his car as he swerved down the street was a great old school stunt, like something out of the seventies, or more recently out of Death Proof. Nice long takes where you can really see that it is a stunt person and they’re driving with real speed. I just appreciate some good old fashioned stunts in a show so reliant on CG.
As far as episodes go, this one was fairly forgettable. A few stand out scenes brought it up from being a complete bore but overall this was more a bridge episode. It’s helping get us somewhere but nowhere near as flashy or interesting as we’ve become used to.
What did you think of the season premiere? Tell us in the comments section below!