Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Series One, Episode Two
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., like the show’s team of walking clichés, is gradually finding its feet and seems to be getting more confident and a lot smarter. The script is filled with twists and turns that are pretty easy to predict, but even when you can they’re still great fun to watch.
Episode two opens with a hole being blown in the side of the big black S.H.I.E.L.D. plane. We then jump back 19 hours to the end of the previous episode where we discover that this ’0-8-4′ (code for a powerful object of unknown origin) is a Tesseract powered hydra weapon left in Peru by an escaped Nazi that could explode at any minute. You’d have thought with a weapon like that, the Nazi would at least hold the world to ransom for one million dollars rather than dropping it carelessly in an ancient temple. (How many of you did the pinky movement? Post the words “One Million Dollars’ in the comments section below if you did.)
The last 0-8-4 Coulson investigated was a hammer only a blonde Australian with muscles of a god could lift so the early comparisons to Thor are obvious. The only difference is the location. Even Dr Von Plot Explanation…sorry Selvig turns up but this time played by a bronzed guy with a Spanish accent. He disappears the minute the soldiers turn up with guns. The Marvel Movies’ track record with international politics is sketchy at best and unsurprisingly the TV show continues that trend. The conflict between the Peruvian government and the rebels has the depth of a GCSE history essay copied off Wikipedia.
However, this is still better than the last time Marvel visited South America when the US army invaded Rio and left a Hulk sized hole behind. Thankfully Agent Ward and his oversized sonic screwdriver, which he deploys with a forward roll, saves the day. Silly American. Doesn’t he know that a) size doesn’t matter and b) forward rolls aren’t required if you wear a bow tie? More interesting is that the team pick up Coulson’s ex…well girlfriend seems too strong a term, more like Boredom-Alleviating-Backseat-Fun-Person from his old days in South America.
Naturally she’s about as helpful as your ex turning up on a blind date but at least she creates the perfect reason for our team of clichés to bond. This week’s episode finishes on an excellent cliff hanger. While our team drink beer in a happy American TV style ending, Skye gets a mysterious text message asking what her status is from last week’s shadowy villains The Rising Tide. Her reply sets up the rest of the series nicely.
Marvel Movie Reference of the Week: While Iron Man gets name checked, the reference of the week goes to the Nick Fury cameo at the end which is so good you realise you’d watch an entire TV show of Samuel L Jackson’s Fury chewing out Coulson.
Friend of Joss Whedon Alert of the Week: Well, his little brother Jed did get to write the episode, but apart from that there wasn’t one this week, suggesting that this section may last as long as Edward Norton did as the Hulk. Come back Ron Glass, everything is forgiven.