Saturday, 26 April 2014

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D: Turn, Turn, Turn

"Don't trust anyone..."

Well, well, well... what a gripping and twisty-turny episode this is. A lot happens and the status quo is overturned, but not without some good character stuff.

Before we talk about that, though, we ought to talk about episodes tying in with Marvel movies that have just been at the pictures; having not seen Thor: The Dark World I was extremely put out by the fact that it seemed to be required viewing. This time around, however, I just so happened to have seen Captain America: The Winter Soldier on my honeymoon a few weeks ago and, for some strange reason, I don't mind so much. Odd, that.

Anyway, let's get back to the episode, as we ended on a cliffhanger; not only is Agent May ratting on the team via a secure line, but Agent Hand suddenly wants them dead. Could she be HYDRA?

After a bit of Blue Oyster Cult's "Don't Fear the Reaper", Someone is after Garrett's plane, too. But first we have to sort out the sudden tension between sort-of traitor May and the rest of the team: apparently she was reporting to Fury all this time, and it was her who, seemingly via currently fashionable "nudge" techniques, put together the team with the aim of keeping an eye on the resurrected but possibly damaged Coulson. Understandably, Coulson is a little put out by this, and their relationship will take a while to repair. But when May tries to contact Fury again, this time with Coulson present, they learn that Fury is supposedly dead. Oh dear. This is something of an "everything you think you know us wrong" moment, and not the last one the episode has to offer.

Joined by Garrett, the team piece together the clues to discover that HYDRA has taken over the upper echelons of SHIELD, and their plane is forcibly headed to the Hub, now HYDRA central. Worse, both Simmons and sometime red herring Triplett are ar the centre of the web.

The second big reveal is that Victoria Hand is not, in fact, HYDRA (and I have to praise Saffron Burrows here, in hindsight, for her performances from the beginning), and Garrett is, which would explain why he's being played by an actor of Bill Paxton's stature.

But perhaps even bigger than this is that Ward, just before he may be about to die on a mission, asks Skye out on a date, and she accepts, thereby fully vindicating the predictions of my good lady wife from way back when. Amusingly, Skye knew about Ward and May because it was "obvious" in the small world of the plane. And, as he's about to risk his life, she even kisses him. Aaah!

So it turns out to be something of a surprise when, with HYDRA seemingly defeated by Captain America and Coulson and the rest of the team off to clean up the organisation, Ward should turn out to be a traitor, killing Hand and working with the splendidly charismatic Garrett. And they bloody go and end it there...!

Wow. How did Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D get so good?

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