I got to catch up on SHIELD this weekend.
After a week off, the series was back, in what I felt was a mediocre episode, and I hate to think that they may have lost some of the momentum they were building up. There were individual story threads that I quite enjoyed, but overall the story wasn’t as up to snuff as one would have hoped.
Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) ends up infected with an alien disease that will result in her death unless she finds an anti-serum, when the team is called in to examine a strange death, a body, with an electrical charge floating off the ground.
When a second body turns up, Skye (Chloe Bennet) finds a connection, they were both volunteer firefighters who were in New York to help the clean up after the battle with the Chitauri at the climax of The Avengers. It seems a couple of them came back with a shared souvenir for the firehouse – a Chitauri helmet.
The helmet is covered in an alien virus, that emits an electro-static charge that is strong enough to kill those that are infected with it.
Meanwhile, Coulson (Clark Gregg) is having a number of medical tests run on himself, because he doesn’t feel quite the same since his ‘death’ at Loki’s (Tom Hiddleston) hands. There’s also a hint that something similar may have happened to Melinda (Ming-Na Wen).
Currently, it’s the character moments, and the developing relationships that are keeping me interested, this story was a little light, and may have worked better for a B-story in a later season. The characters however, still keep me coming back.
There’s a nice moment, when Simmons, Skye and Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) are working on their Ward (Brett Dalton) impersonations, as well as at the end of the episode when Agent Blake (Titus Welliver) says that if Coulson keeps pulling stunts like this, the higher-ups may try to take his dream team away from him.
I realize that these characters exist in the Universe established by Marvel, but I’m hoping that they’ll continue to work their way off the crutches that the movies are providing them. I don’t mind the odd references now and again, but every week seems to be getting extreme.
Let the show learn to stand on its own. It can totally reference characters and events from the ongoing series of movies, but we don’t have to hear about them all the time. These characters have their own lives and assignments, let’s have more of that!
At least with a full season before us, we can expect, and hope for, continued character development, increasingly intricate and involving stories, and the sense of fun we’ve come to expect from the Whedon name.
What are your thoughts on this episode and the series so far?