Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Review: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 1x05 "Girl in the Flower Dress"

Original Air Date: Oct. 22, 2013

This was a good episode.  I enjoyed this episode.  Despite the fuzzy Skyeward clip that opens up the show this is not an episode in which leaves you with warm fuzzy “aww they’re a family” kind feelings. 

The show opens up with a street magician in Hong Kong (as played by Louis Ozawa Chanchien), who is more than he seems.  All seems fine when he is approached by a girl in a flower dress, Raina.  Raina promises Chan Ho Yin he’ll be famous, he’ll be known all over the world as "Scorch" and he’ll be a hero.  In the end it turns out that Raina works for Centipede and needs Chan’s platelets in order to stabilize Extremis.  This was nice return to the storyline started in the pilot episode (which also connects the series to the Marvel verse movies).  Especially if that means that Ruth Negga will be an occurring guest star on the show as Raina.  I’ve been hearing the internet buzz for Ruth Negga joining the cast for a while now and I have to say I’m not disappointed.  I loved her in Misfits and she’s already shaping up as an excellent foe to Coulson’s team.

Back on the bus, the team is able to trace the leaked information on Chan to a hacker from the Rising Tide.  The source of the information turning out to be an extremely old friend/boyfriend of Skye’s, Miles.  She makes an error in judgment as she attempts to warn him before he’s found, only to be found with him by her own team.  In the end the team is too late to save Scorch from himself and are forced to neutralize him.  Skye is offered a last chance to come clean about everything, which she takes, but it’s obvious that they no longer trust her.

So. This episode was kind of like taking a punch in the gut.  I've mentioned it a thousand times before, but I love family/teams on my shows. In the beginning I wasn't too crazy about Skye but she’s grown on me.  Seeing her train with Agent Ward and seeing them come to work as partners and trust each other was my favorite.  When everyone else thought that it had been Skye who had hacked S.H.I.E.L.D, he didn't think it for a second.  Ward stood up for her, only to find her in the real hacker’s apartment.  Ugh. He looked the most hurt out of all of them.  Not to mention at the end when she’s going to see Coulson, she asks Ward to come with her and he won’t even look at her. Ugh. I have a feeling this is a grudge that Ward is going to hold for a long time.  He doesn't seem the kind of guy to let too many people in (shall I remind you of the little poop with knives sticking out of it), but he was beginning to let Skye in and now he feels betrayed.  

Then there’s FitzSimmons.  Who in the beginning are just so excited to see Skye in action as she traces the original hack and then later to see how heartbroken they are at finding out the truth.  Which can we talk about how childlike they seemed in that scene?

Fitz: Why would Skye do this to us? For him? I thought she was our friend.
Simmons: I think she is, Fitz. He’s just obviously more than that.

I think it’s fair to say that they have not had much social interaction besides each other.  Perhaps it speaks to just how long they’ve been with S.H.I.E.L.D.  Simmons also seems to be the only one to continue to stand by Skye.  Unlike everyone else she isn’t so quick to condemn like the rest of the team.

Favorite bits from this episode?  

  • Coulson and May mentioning the “old days”, they are so the parents of the team.

May: “His file say anything about him being homicidal?”
Coulson: “Just said he was kind of a tool.”

  • The weird ex-boyfriend vs current boyfriend glances between Ward and Miles (especially after Skye commented on Ward’s abilities).
  • Even though he’s still upset with Skye, Ward still tries to get her bonus points by telling Coulson that she was able to grab a few of Centipede’s files.
  • Melinda May’s every scene.  She’s awesome and badass and I want a May centric episode. 

Most heart-wrenching bits from this week’s episode?
  • Skye trying to apologize to Ward but him interrupting with “Hands.”, slapping on handcuffs, and walking away. Oh and don’t even get me started on “off the clock.”
  • Ugh. This part as they watch the destruction of Chan.  Had they been able to get to him sooner or had things just gone differently.  Basically, he didn't have to die and it’s incredibly sad that in the end they were unable to save him. 

Ward: “Can’t save someone from themselves, Sir.”
Coulson: “You can if you get to them early enough.”
  • Coulson’s meeting with Skye.  Skye explains that the reason she’s with S.H.I.E.L.D. is because she’s been searching her entire life for information on her family only to dead-end on a single document redacted by S.H.I.E.L.D.  The look in Coulson’s face as he hands her the box.  The trust he had in her now broken.  She hasn't been kicked off the bus quite yet, but she’s not going to be wearing the tracking/all-purpose/punishment bracelet.  That was a disappointed father move.

In Conclusion: I loved this episode.  We’re getting a better look at the main story arch with Centipede, extremis and their attempts at producing super soldiers.  Plus, my favorite of all, we got a lot of character stuff and that’s my favorite stuff.  Looking forward to next week’s episode as it seems we’re going to get a lot more punch in the gut type scenes.  Ugh, did you see that tear jerking FitzSimmons scene in the promo?

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