Agents of SHIELDMarvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Review - Episode 12: SeedsAgents of SHIELD - RSS 2.0
Post-rescue fallout? Seth is dead, Fitz feels guilty and Donnie is shipped off to The Sandbox - but not before discreetly realizing that the explosion has granted him ice powers. And so, we have our second Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D supervillain: Blizzard.
As for final stingers: Coulson reassures May that he trusts her not let her no-strings fling with Ward interfere with work, and reveals that Skye - far from being devastated - is actually pretty glad to learn that she was the opposite of hated by all those foster families. Plus, she's now got like 10 more episodes left in the season to figure out what her crazy-important but undiscovered superpower is. Oh, and Coulson calls up Quinn to let him know that S.H.I.E.L.D is ready and willing to shoot him out of the sky the next time he crosses their jurisdiction (wait - S.H.I.E.L.D respects jurisdictional boundaries now? Since when!?) but he's not concerned... he's working for The Clairvoyant.
- So, the million dollar question is now: Who or what is Skye, now that we know she is at least believed by S.H.I.E.L.D and somebody else to be "more than human" from birth? It's pointless to speculate that she might be a known Marvel heroine (or villain!) until we've at least seen what her powers are, but a popular fan-theory that seemed to emerge immediately is that she's one of "The Runaways" - a team of young characters estranged from their supervillain parents. If so, likeliest candidates would be Nico Minoru (witch) or Karolina Dean aka "Lucy In The Skye" (alien.)
- Thus far, Ian Quinn has "accidentally" contributed to the creation of both Graviton and now Blizzard. If we're going to find out it's been a plan, it's the most overcomplicated method of building a supervillain team I've ever heard of.
- Baby Skye (or whatever her real name is) was found in a village in Hunan Province, China, but we don't know if she was born there. Chloe Bennett (who plays the adult Skye) is of mixed Jewish and Chinese descent, speaks Mandarin and was briefly a pop-music singer in China. Marvel actually does have a notable catalogue of Asian female characters... but the bulk of them are related to the X-Men universe, so they'd be off-limits for Agents of S.H.I.E.LD.
- Most of the Marvel Universe references in this episode (Bucky Barnes, HYDRA, "Lola," S.H.I.E.L.D's origins as the post-WWII reorganization of The Strategic Scientific Reserve) relate back to Captain America. Expect to see more of that, since S.H.I.E.L.D going bad is part of Captain America: The Winter Soldier's main plot and lines up nicely with Coulson inching up toward going rogue.
- One more guess for Skye: Jessica Drew, Spider-Woman. She has one of the most absurdly convoluted, over-retconned backstories in all of Marvel (at one point, she believed that she was actually a common spider evolved-up into a humanoid-looking form by The High Evolutionary) but it usually involves receiving powers at a young age somewhere remote. She's been both a S.H.I.E.L.D and HYDRA agent, and also has connections to The Skrulls ("Chitauri" in the movieverse.)
Two weeks of re-runs in the near future, but the series will return with a new episode on February 4th which promises an undercover caper on a train, an extended Stan Lee cameo and an "astonishing, series-changing final act" that looks an awful lot like a main character death. It's already been revealed that actor Bill Paxton will be joining the cast as a new (to the team) Agent for a four-episode arc soon after this, likely as part of water-testing for a retooling should they score a second season (it'd be necessitated anyway if Winter Soldier ends with S.H.I.E.L.D.-proper transformed into something sinister) so some deck-clearing wouldn't be the biggest shock in the world. If I was placing bets, my money would be on Ward to buy it, since his original role as fight-scene guy has largely been usurped by May and, speaking of May, losing her secret-sexfriend (and maybe realizing she felt something stronger for him after all) would be strong character stuff to work with.
Bob Chipman is a film critic and independent filmmaker. If you've heard of him before, you have officially been spending way too much time on the internet. Aside from his work at The Escapist, he wrote a book and does a videogame criticism show.