SHIELD’s Past Life is past its expiration date

ABC

Well here we are. Agents of SHIELD finally finished its trip to the future and ended this week finally returning to the present. It is about time!

Starting off with a clever diversion to get back into the heart of things, “Past Life” was a mixture of good and bad much like the rest of the season has been. We got one of the largest exposition dumps I’ve ever heard right near the top as well. After dragging their feet so long this felt like a mad sprint to wrap things up before the finish line.

Of course Mack and Yoyo split up, didn’t we start the season with him telling everyone not to do that? Plus them splitting up ends up not really helping in the way it was supposed to. What it did provide was one of the worst twists and subsequent cruelest fake outs the series has ever had.

So we got to see who Kasius’s seer was, who has been feeding him info, even though we only found out he had a seer last week. The mystery person is …. Yoyo? Or rather a future version of Yoyo who oddly looks no older than her current version. The whole explanation of her being dead and brought back seemed slapped together. Yoyo would have definitely not given them any information from what we know of her so none of what we are told here jives with her as a character.

Then when talking to her younger self she is infuriatingly vague. Talking about feelings and echoes, saying she’s stuck in a loop. She barely gives our Yoyo any details that could possibly help and the little she does say is still very light on facts. Coulson is sick and dying and she needs to let him die. No how or why and nothing about Daisy eventually destroying the world. What the hell girl!

Then after talking for god knows how long we get the reveal that older Yoyo’s arms have been amputated. An oddly timed reveal for shock’s sake alone but did little else. Then of course Mack later sees this version get killed by Kasius only to very quickly find his Yoyo who never explains what just happened, just that it wasn’t her.

Then there’s Kasius. You poor over-acting man. He went full on nut bag this week. From mourning over Sinara to pulling out his rage goo which was a deus ex machina if I’ve ever seen one. “Hey I happen to be in a losing situation, why don’t I use this stuff that turns people into raging beasts? I know I’ve never mentioned it before this but who cares?” Though the PCP in space line was pretty funny, only the second funniest moment after Deke’s absolute amazement at guns and their power. I loved those couple of moments … but they played it off like Deke has never seen a gun before. There’s no way none of the soldiers have guns right? Plus Grill’s number one guy had a gun earlier this season. Hmm, even Kasius mysteriously has an old timey revolver this week too. Tt just seemed like sloppy storytelling.

Back to Kasius, once he just up and gives up, taking his space PCP, he just got ridiculous. When he started roaring and charging around I literally laughed out loud at the guy. It just came off as cheesy. I mean he says to Mack, “I’m going to beat your body with your own skull.” How would that even work? Plus I mean if his head is off I don’t think he will care what happens to his body at that point. Just silly.

I did like Pebbles going out in space to sneak attack Kasius’ men but when he smashes out the window sucking them all into space the SHIELD members are in a hallway nearby waiting and don’t even have to brace themselves. I guess the vacuum of space can’t reach around corners!

In the end we quickly tie a bow on all the plot threads. Gemma puts a slave earpiece into Kasius right ear before Mack axes him. Deke and Enoch sacrifice themselves to get the obelisk machine to work and send the team back. Pebbles and Tess float off to restart mankind on Earth. I just didn’t feel connected to any of it. Everything felt kind of easy and pointless. Deke did the most obvious thing possible (exactly what I predicted earlier this season) and his death seemed unnecessary.

I’m just thankful this chapter is over and hopeful the next will be better. Luckily we’ll find out in four weeks, wait what!? On a shady endnote after promoting the fact SHIELD would run without breaks through the end of the season, this week ABC dropped the bomb that it actually will take a four week hiatus, right during the sweeps period. Now maybe this is to avoid getting crushed by the Olympics but the sudden announcement and complete change to their plans feels ominous. We’ll see you all in a month!

Agents of SHIELD returns Friday, March 2 at 9:00 PM on ABC.

What did you think of this episode? Tell us in the comments section below!

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