Did anyone else feel like this week’s episode of Agents of SHIELD acted as little more than filler? We got very little forward momentum to the story and the main crux of events. Finding out Mace’s secret should have been a B plot at most.
Mace did continue fixing Daisy’s image with a press conference. The press event became the jumping off point for everything to follow, and it nicely cemented that Daisy is out of hot water and is, at least officially, back in the government’s good graces. But didn’t we already do this? Mace spoke to the press after Daisy exposed herself as being part of operations before, and we saw several headlines confirming the information got picked up by national press outlets. So all this really did was put Mace in the line of fire to facilitate the assassination attempt.
Then there was just how easily the assassin got into position. The SHIELD agent assigned to the nearby roof was taken out and no one else on security noticed? Even the most common person knows these security guys check in constantly. SHIELD is just not very good at its job. I did like the “magic bullet” used in the attempt. It appeared to try and drill into its target before then exploding. Would this actually work on the bulletproof Mace? If so who makes their tech and does their research? But the larger question is if, as we later find out, this was just a ruse to get Mace into his jet, why use such expensive tech and not just normal rounds? Lots of questions that I feel don’t have any good answers other than it looked cool.
So after all these weeks setting up Mace’s kiss ass crony Burrows and the mysterious briefcase they both obsessed about, the big reveal was completely underwhelming. First off having Burrows sucked out of the jet to his death came off a bit cheap to me. Shock for shock’s sake. That being said the blocking and timing was very effective. I didn’t see it coming one bit. But we were led to believe that Burrows had some special connection or insider knowledge. Him being killed makes that lead up a waste.
Then the reveal that Talbot chemically concocted Mace’s powers? Wow, that’s stupid even for him. The idea of an Inhuman leading SHIELD was smart, genius even. Deciding instead to put a normal human whose powers expire and needs injection to maintain them? That’s just begging for a scandal. There was no way that Mace wouldn’t be exposed eventually. With as often as SHIELD HQ gets compromised (which is way too much btw), how was Mace expected not to be shown as a fraud? The only real change that resulted is Coulson unofficially taking back control from Mace while leaving him in place as a figurehead.
On the bright side the action that comes about from this series of events is pretty damn cool. The stunt team for Agents of SHIELD never disappoints and they certainly brought some great action set pieces this week. Two, count em, two agent May fights. Isn’t this like the third or fourth time we’ve had a May doppelganger? Ming-na Wen is just too much of a badass not to use her as much as possible. That whole tool shed fight was equal parts awesome and silly. When we got to see hatchet versus hedge clippers it was almost too much. Almost. But the whole scene was well choreographed and entertaining.
Now let’s discuss Aida and Simmons in the B plot this week. It was revealed that Aida’s homicidal behavior was not in fact ordered by Radcliffe, but instead the result of her taking her directives far too literal. This opens up a lot of questions on just how in control is Radcliffe and whether Aida will inevitably take things too far again. You would think a scientist of his esteem would have included the first law of robotics, making her primary directive to do no harm.
Then there was Simmons’ and Fitz’s weird obsessions with Aida or more specifically her head. Simmons reaction and clamor to destroy Aida seemed almost frantic and practically jealous. Understandable as Fitz seems equally obsessed with fixing Aida and the strange longing looks he gives her. Is there an unsaid romantic triangle here? Ew. If nothing else Simmons should be fascinated by the technology not desiring to destroy it. I found that to be the equivalent of book burning. Much like last week’s sudden change in Mack, this week several characters acted out of their norm, like a new writer came on board who has no idea what these people’s motivations are.
A bit of Disney synergy this week with Talbot’s “Poppins” quip towards Simmons, which I quite enjoyed. Overall though I felt let down. February sweeps are coming and it felt like things were slowed to a crawl this week, likely to save the good stuff for the ratings period. While still with its own fun, this certainly came across as a filler episode. The results of which could have been summarized into five minutes and do very little to really move along the narrative. With one more week until ratings kick in I would bet next week is similarly downplayed but ends on a huge cliffhanger to drive up viewers the following week.
What did you think of the new LMD storyline? Tell us in the comments section below!