Agents of SHIELD! AGENTS OF SHIELD!!! AHH!!! AAAHHH!!! AAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!
Okay, I’m done fan-boying.
AoS Season 2 hit the ground running, starting in Austria, 1945. Dr. Whitehall and his Hydra team are packing up their Hydra toys, specifically a “advanced” silver obelisk that Redskull thought to be the “answer to death.” Suddenly, KNOCK KNOCK! Agent Carter and the Howling Commandos burst in, take out the guards, and capture Dr. Whitehall, sealing him and the rest of the Hydra weapons and objects into boxes, putting the obelisk into a sealed crate labeled 0-8-4.
Flash forward to present day, Skye, May, and Trip observe a black market deal for intel on the very same box we saw in 1945. Apparently, since the fall of SHIELD and Hydra, the U. S. government, lead by General Talbot (who has kind of a Hitler-esque haircut) has been collecting any and all SHIELD/Hydra equipment and agents to keep them from harming anyone else. This reminds me of the warehouse the Ark went into at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark, but I’m getting off point.
The info is being sold by an ex-SHIELD agent to a small group of mercenaries lead by Xena- sorry, Diana- no, try again, Hadley. They’re about to make the deal when an unknown bulletproof assassin bursts in on the scene, kills the ex-SHIELD agent and makes off with the intel. Skye and the gang try to stop him with the help of their mercenary friends, but to no avail. Their bullets did no damage to him, aside from drop small pieces of metal where they hit.
Back at the new SHIELD HQ, Coulson and May talk about the current situation of SHIELD. Hiding from the government. Tracking down any and all allies to recruit. But the rebuilding of the organization is going slower than Coulson would like. However, what they were able to find out from the intel before it was stolen might change all that, for better or worse.
Down in the lab, Fitz-Simmons try and figure out how to cloak the bus so that it can take to the skies once again without government missiles being shoved up its tail rudder. Since we last saw the scientific duo, Fitz was alive but injured due to their escape from the ocean floor where Wade left them last season. Fitz is having a hard time getting back into the swing of things. Forgetting words. Being stumped by technology he would have bested before, and he’s angry. He wants to be his old self. He wants to help his team. Who can blame him. Simmons assures him that he’ll get better. May enters asking about the metal fragments they collected from the assassin, when the metal turns to flesh and begins to bleed. After checking the blood, they find out it belongs to Carl Creel, a gifted Hydra agent. For more information on Hydra, they go to their only source. Wade.
Wade is currently locked up in a cell under the SHIELD HQ, and will only talk to Skye. Coulson sends her down there, against her protests, to get whatever info she can. Wade’s less interested in giving info as much as he is wanting to talk to Skye and convince her he’s there to help. Apparently all it took were two suicide attempts to get his head clear. After Skye threatens to leave he finally gives up the goods.
Carl “Crusher” Kreel is a gifted Hydra agent, an ex-boxer who can absorb any type of material into his body and become that material. He loves the feel it gives him almost as much as killing. Ward also gives up a secret method of communication Hydra used, which leads them not only to Kreel, but also shows a vast network of currently active Hyrda agents.
Kreel’s next target is Brigadier-General Talbot, the same man who was chasing down Coulson’s crew last season, and his hell bent on eradicating SHIELD and Hydra from the face of the Earth. Kreel makes his move against the general and is stopped by May and Skye, with the help as a special icer gun, With Kreel out of the picture, they kidnap Talbot and bring him back so Coulson can have a small chat with him.
Coulson tries to show him they’re the good guys, explaining that arresting Kreel and moving him to the same location of their SHIELdra toys (SHIELD. Hydra. SHIELdra? No?) was exactly what Kreel wanted. Talbot is not convinced, refusing his help to Coulson. SInce the general won’t play ball, they ice him and go to plan B.
Having stolen Talbot’s security info, May leads the SHIELD team and mercenaries into the government facility, searching for the 0-8-4 and something else, which May is not currently telling the rest of the team. Hadley finds the obelisk just before being confronted by Kreel. In an attempt to use the obelisk against him, it backfires and begins to rot her hand, giving her excruciating pain. The team fights off Kreel momentarily which the mercenaries get Hadley and the obelisk out of their, while the rest find a confiscated Quin-jet and escape.
Part of the plan all along was to get that jet. It’s cloaking features already installed, it will be a large advantage to SHIELD. Now with the Quin-jet, SHIELD has an advantage. They can travel around the world, under the radar, doing their jobs, answering their calls of duty, as ghosts.
Fittz was working on a cloaking device, but in his state he wasn’t getting anywhere, and as Coulson mentions Simmons leaving, feeling her presence was hindering Fittz’s recovery, we find out that the Simmons Fittz was talking to was simply a hallucination.
The mercenaries try to get Hadley help, but she knows she won’t make it, begging them to cut off her hand, because “you’ve seen what they can do with robotics these days.” They follow her orders just before Kreel catches up with them, crashing their car, and stealing the obelisk, leaving them for dead.
In an unknown location, a Hydra agents tells his boss that the obelisk has been retrieved. His boss turns around and is revealed as Dr. Whitehall, the same man from 1945, having not aged a day.
What I liked
I can assure you the list of things I didn’t like is a lot shorter than this one.
The introduction of Agent Carter and the Howling Commandos got me excited for the new show. I admit I wasn’t as excited for Agent Carter before this. I thought having another SHIELD based show would be redundant. However, if the show is anything like this scene, I think it will be fantastic. This also gave us some intrigue as to what items Hydra had, (one of which was a large box with a faint blue glow, possibly containing a certain dead blue alien?) and what the obelisk is. Whitehall mentioned it was “the answer to death.” I admit, I’m no expert here, but I’m hoping that this is another Infinity Stone. We’ve possibly seen four already from Avengers, Thor Dark World, and Guardians of the Galaxy. Putting an Infinity Stone into AoS would be a great way to strengthen the bridge between the show and the movies of the MCU.
The tone is also significantly more fast paced. Having a solid SHIELD HQ and more members of the team is a significant improvement from the Bus and just the small group, even though the Bus was pretty cool. The overall feel of it seems to be one goal: rebuild SHIELD, the right way.
Coulson himself is a bit more reserved, compartmentalizing with his agents, being away for long periods of time without checking in. In reality, he’s already balding, so just take away his eye and he’ll be another Nick Fury, which we’ve yet to determine as good or bad. It’s definitely a change from the good guy Coulson from last season. He’s ready to take more risks if that is what his duty calls for.
With the absence of Ward as Skye’s S.O., May has taken over her training, which was a development in the last few episodes of the first season. It seems like they both benefit from each other. The cold skillful May and the care-free Skye have become a good team, both rubbing off on the other. May is more sociable and part of the team, while Skye is becoming a hardened agent.
Fittz’s development after his ordeal is also interesting, and heartbreaking to watch. In season one he was so sharp and fast, while still goofy. He hasn’t lost his humor, but his intelligence is held back from the trauma, and you can see how much of himself he’s felt he’s lost because of that.
Another point of intrigue is Patton Oswalt’s character, Keanig. This character was introduced last season, and was also killed, only to be reintroduced as Keanig’s twin brother. The audience aren’t the only ones finding this strange, as Trip mentions to Skye how many brothers Keanig mentions having. I said it before and I’m standing by it, I think Keanig and the rest of the family Keanigs are life model decoys. Only time will tell.
And the LAST point of intrigue I want to bring up is Skye. Her investigation into the schematic Garret, and later Coulson, was drawing at the end of season 1. Coulson put her on the task of figuring out what it is, though so far she hasn’t found anything. I was hoping that the schematic might be in Guardians of the Galaxy somewhere, but unless I missed it, no dice.We also have a small hint of finding out about Skye’s “father”, the unknown person/creature, Raina visited last season. Apparently, Ward knows something. Hopefully we’ll find out throughout the rest of the season.
What I Didn’t Like
The only thing I didn’t like out the season 2 premiere was that I have to wait a whole week until seeing the next episode! A lot can happen in a week. The world could end. Zombies could rise from their graves. Aliens could invade. The signals to television and the internet could shut down. I could die. OR something far worse could happen… THE SHOW COULD BE CANCELLED!
The last season of AoS was met with some negativity. I defend it all I can, but people have their opinions. They felt the show was boring, bad writing, lazy writing, dull characters, and if that’s what they saw when they watched the show, I feel sorry for them. I loved every minute of the last season. It gave us a great idea of how SHIELD operated before Hydra and the events of Winter Soldier. Up until that point, SHIELD was business as usual, but once they reached that moment, the show’s mood changed and a sense of urgency was added. The stakes were raised higher than they’d been before. But those who felt the show was boring, didn’t stick around to see that change. That change carries on into this season premiere, and builds on it. This is the show AoS was working to be. Hopefully the second season will bring the naysayers back into the fold and we can all enjoy this latest installment of the MCU.