Tuesday 10:00 PM on ABC (Returning September 20, 2016)

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. S01E17: "Turn, Turn, Turn"


WARNING: This review contains spoilers for Captain America: The Winter Soldier. If you've seen the S.H.I.E.L.D. episode, you already know what happened in the movie, but still: You've been warned.

There are two schools of thought regarding humanity. One believes that humans are good by nature, the other subscribes to the notion that humans are inherently evil. I'm generally pretty cynical when it comes to my fellow human beings, which is why my brain does this funny thing whenever I start to really like a TV character. It starts coming up with a list of reasons why that person is secretly a jerk or why they're going to die soon. That's why I've been wondering for weeks when the other shoe was going to drop regarding Bill Paxton's Agent Garrett. I liked him far too much. He was far too cool to be a good guy. I could hear this little voice whispering in my ear last week, telling me he probably wasn't all he appeared to be. When coupled with the knowledge that the Clairvoyant was an agent within S.H.I.E.L.D., my brain started going down the list of possible suspects.

Knowing that the Clairvoyant had to be someone we'd met already, I instantly ruled out Agent May because it was far too obvious she wasn't reporting to the Clairvoyant, and was a Fury plant whose job was to keep an eye on Coulson. Agent Hand (R.I.P.) was obviously a red herring, and a character I'm going to miss dearly. Titus Welliver's Agent Blake was out of commission after last week, otherwise I'd have seriously considered him; there's something about Welliver that just screams, "I MIGHT NOT BE TRUSTWORTHY!" I think it might be his face. And those times he played characters who weren't trustworthy. Anyway, continuing on down the list, I knew Agent Sitwell was shady—and his role in Captain America: The Winter Soldier proved I was right—but he's always had the air of a lousy lackey, not of a man in charge. I doubt he even had control of the radio station in his car. That left only Agents Garrett and Tripplett. We hardly knew Triplett, and he was too young to fit the profile I'd created in my mind (I've been watching a lot of Hannibal lately), which meant that, by process of elimination and my own distrusting nature, Agent Garrett was the only viable option. 


Garrett being the Clairvoyant actually makes a lot of sense. His character was instantly likable, and looking back, it's clear that S.H.I.E.L.D. made an extra effort to make him appear that way. His cool, take-no-prisoners attitude purposefully threw us off the scent. The character also just fits the profile of the Clairvoyant. He has a history with Coulson, which would explain his interest in Coulson. He was "old guard" enough that he'd have not only the security clearance, but also the power to amass and influence followers. And he's been around long enough that he'd have been fully enveloped by the Hydra mentality. I suppose then, that if I was able to smell the traitorous stank on Garrett that I should have been able to follow it to Agent Ward—yes, I've finally decided he's interesting enough to be upgraded to his real name, although I make no promises about maintaining that. Agent Handsome still has a nice ring to it.

Someone threw out the idea that Ward was a traitor in the comments last week, and I can't remember who it was, but if it was you: Nice work! I remember seeing that comment and thinking, "Huh, that's an interesting theory!" And then I went about my day eating gummi bears or whatever. I didn't give it much thought at the time, and I suppose that's exactly what the writers had intended. From the beginning, they built Ward up to be a hero. He was prickly and didn't work well with others, but he jumped out of the plane to save Simmons. He went in the field with Fitz and came out with a bromance. He trained Skye as her superior officer (and he kissed her tonight, which I'll get to later). And he went so far as to carry on a sexual relationship with May. Ward managed to insert himself (heh) in to everyone's lives in a way that made you not only trust him, but like him, or at least like that he was on your side and not your enemy's. 


Producers Jeph Loeb and Jeff Bell did a post-mortem interview with TV Guide about tonight's episode, and in it they confirmed they knew from the beginning this was going to be Ward's path. I stand by my previous criticisms of his character and Dalton's cardboard performance, though, because A) they're already out there on the internet, and B) looking at this in retrospect doesn't change the fact Ward really deserved that Agent Handsome nickname for most of the series. Loeb and Bell admitted Dalton didn't know right from the beginning that Ward would be revealed as a traitor, and I don't know when Dalton got the memo, but it doesn't change the fact the character—even if he's a skilled liar and manipulator—was about as boring as white paper for awhile. I think the writers would argue they purposefully kept Ward from fully developing as a character for awhile, because he was a big fat liar who lies, but I'm just too much of a cynic to believe that they'd had that mapped out, too. 

Instead of kicking ourselves for missing what was apparently right in front of us all along, our time would be better spent looking at how something like this—Garrett, Ward, Hydra—could happen. If you didn't see Captain America: The Winter Soldier prior to this episode, you were probably a bit OMGWTFBBQ at the reveal that Hydra not only exists, but that it's been thriving in S.H.I.E.L.D. for the last 70 years. It's a curious battle about right and wrong, because, and I'll try to be brief here, Hydra truthfully thought they were doing the right thing by eliminating would-be criminals before they had the chance to commit those crimes. They were pulling a Minority Report, but as Cap pointed out, they weren't ruling in the name of freedom, they were ruling with fear. It's easy to see how people would be swayed toward Hydra's way of thinking, though, and it's even easier to see how someone like Ward—someone with a horrible family life, someone who needed a father figure—would be susceptible to what Garrett was spinning when he was under his command. 

Is Ward really a "bad guy" though? He definitely shot three people in what appeared to be an attempt to save Garrett, but the final scene in which Garrett's talking and Ward zones out is an interesting development. Could it mean he's no longer listening to the bullsh*t Garrett's feeding him? Some might wonder if he's playing Garrett, and while I think that's always a possibility, I think it's going to be less about good versus bad as it will be Coulson versus Garrett. I could be wrong—I'm wrong a lot—but I have a feeling this will be a rich storyline for Dalton, and we're going to see a side of Ward we maybe haven't seen before. Just as we had to question whether Bucky Barnes was actually evil in Captain America and not just a weapon used by the enemy, I think we might eventually find ourselves in a similar situation with Ward. He was led to believe certain things by a man he looked up to for a long time. Has his time on Coulson's team changed him? Did he really have feelings for Skye? 

It appears we now know why Ward really shot Brad Dourif's character last week, and it wasn't because Nash threatened Skye—although, I kind of wish it was, because that at least makes it more interesting than what it was, which was to just make Coulson believe the Clairvoyant was dead. I'm not one for shipping, especially on this show (unless we're talking Ward and his stubble from next week's promos, because that should stay forever), but part of me hopes he wasn't lying about his feelings for her. That being said, if it's those feelings that somehow pull him back to the good side, I will vomit all over that development, because this ain't The Vampire Diaries (I kid! Sort of). But I think those feelings can be an asset to the story if used properly. 

I talked a lot about how feelings make us human last week, and how it was those supposed feelings Ward acted on last week that made his character more interesting. Even though we have to look back at everything Ward's said and done with a different lens now, I stand by that statement, too. If his feelings for Skye are real, that's more interesting than if he was playing her. And I don't subscribe to the notion that just because someone is revealed to be working for the opposing team that everything they've ever done or said up to that point is a lie. I'm sure some of it was, but all of it? Nah, that would be hella boring. And right now, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is anything but boring. My only question is this: When will the rest of the team find out about Ward's apparent double-cross? Because as far as they know, nothing is wrong.



DECLASSIFIED CASE FILES


– The next person who makes Fitz cry is getting my foot up their a$$. Also, Fitz shot someone! Go Fitz! Team Fitz!

– May confirmed what we all already knew, which is that she loves Coulson was placed on the team to monitor Coulson and report back. But what we didn't know was that she basically assembled the team by telling Director Fury what kind of team Coulson would need, which pushed him in the direction of Fitz, Simmons, and Ward. Sneaky!

– As far as the characters know, Fury is still dead. But as we know, that was a fake-out and Samuel L. Jackson will be appearing in the season finale. What do you think that means? 

– Has S.H.I.E.L.D. always used suggested hashtags and I've just been blocking them out until now? 

– Ward still has the hard drive with all the plane's files, right? Skye handed it to him, but I don't recall him giving it back. I'm sure that won't turn into anything!

– "But I'm getting better at it." (The look on Simmons' face when she said was kind of chilling.)

– How effing cool was that Hydra logo at the end where the S.H.I.E.L.D. logo used to be?

thekaitling:list:were-you-shocked-by-the-clairvoyants-identity/
thekaitling:list:and-what-about-the-identity-of-the-mole/

  

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 5/17/2016

Season 3 : Episode 22

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because this ain't The Vampire Diaries

Now thanks to Kaitlin I want a crossover!

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This was the most recent episode over here in the Greatest Britain and I'm still pissed that we aren't only 24 hours behind you guys, but anyway, WTF!
I called it with Garrett ages ago, I'll admit that I was thrown for a second with the Agent Hand decoy, but I quickly dismissed that as such. Garrett was just too obvious as the big meanie. Agent Ward however... When he stood up and cocked the gun I thought he was going to shoot Garrett with one of those I.C.E rounds, I certainly didn't expect him to be a HYDRA agent. If Joss Whedon still has any involvement with writing this show then I can absolutely believe that Ward has been a double agent from the beginning.
I've been close to giving up on this show for some time but not now. I suppose I should probably try and watch The Winter Soldier some time soon.
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Garrett being the Clairvoyant was super obvious from the moment he showed up (or that he was HYDRA, at least). Ward totally took me by surprise, though... good job show.
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The episode confirmed Agent Garret is an agent of Hydra, but it did NOT in ANY WAY confirm that he was the Clairvoyant. I'm puzzled as to how the reviewer came to assume this. The true identity of the Clairvoyant remains a mystery, but I am certain that it is not Agent Garret. That's simply too easy, and the show could use another big reveal. Personally, I'm hoping that Agent Handsome is the Clairvoyant.
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Read the TV guide interview, dumb-butt.
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The more I think of this idea, the more I like it: they find out about Ward's betrayal right after he has left the BUS to join Hydra. Skye gets all Hawkeyed up -she chases after him, she even confronts him one time and has to decide whether shoot him or let him go- but Coulson can't say anything about Ward to his team because it'd jeopardize the whole mission and Ward's safety.

P.S. Anyone else is having troubles to check tv.com mailbox? Ugh.
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The discussion with my wife about Ward's true nature led us to a "pizza wager". If Ward is really a traitor, I win and we'll order Barbecue; if Ward is a double agent (that nod to Coulson before leaving), she wins and we'll order Hawaiian.

I don't believe in pineapple in pizza, so you Agents of SHIELD fellows better keep Handsome in the dark side! This is my first and last warning.
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I notice that about half of the people watching the show are praying that Ward doesn't stay 'evil' (so is either a spy for SHIELD or Hydra but turning around for Skye or his ideals) - and are really disappointed with the writers if Ward stays evil, and the other half of the viewers is praying Ward stays evil, and are really disappointed if he turns around again or turns out to be a spy for SHIELD. So, in the end, the writers of the show can in no way make everybody happy. :P That's sad.

But I'll just wait and see what happens. Maybe they come up with a very creative solution. And I have absolutely no idea what I would 'want' to happen with Ward. ;)
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i'm willing to believe they have a creative solution. good storytelling emphasizes the journey as much as--if not more than--the destination. and the brains behind this series have some pretty good storytelling chops.
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Honestly, I'd be ok with either way. This episode gave me the guarantee that whatever path they writers choose for Ward, they will make it perfectly. So both options -Ward evil, Ward good- are good for me (right now, maybe I'll change my mind with following episodes xD)
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What is the last episode of AoS that I should watch before going to see Cap 2? I'm behind on the show, but have all episodes recorded. Btw, I'm new on here and haven't read any of the spoilers!
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See the episode before this one, "the end of the beginning".
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Thanks WildPict!
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I'm in denial about Ward's betrayal. Mostly because he is my favorite character and I don't want to reasses everyhting we learned about him. And also if he is the bad guy there is a possibility he will die and I woudl very much not like it.
I'm entertaining the notion he is pulling a Snape. Thta maybe he was under Garretts influence but is now just a spy.
And I too hope his feelings for Skey are fo real. I like them and they make sense and it woudl actually be interesting if her ideals where something to make him rethink hi allegience. Though if sge is the sole thing to pull him from the dark side I will be pissed. Because that is lazy writing and diminishes both the characters.
I don't care much about Coulson or May but it will be interesting to see the team now. Because they were becomeing close. And now they are torn again.
The only consistently good thing about the show is Fitz and Simmons.
I wonder when the team will find out about Ward and how they will react.
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I just rewatched the episode just to see if I could see anything this time around that I missed watching the first time. There is a few second moment between Ward and Coulson as Ward is walking away with Hand and Garrett. Ward makes a very slight nod to Coulson.... it might be nothing, but it gave me a slight hope that Ward is working for Coulson to help take Hydra down.
Probably wishful thinking, but it's just something I spotted.
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Let me begin by saying this was EPIC and I am beyond happy that Ward turned evil (and desperately praying to the TV deities that he STAYS that way). I have seen many theories attempting to prove that he is still a good guy. Allow me to disprove them.

1) Agent Hand's decision to kill Garrett made total sense (I really don't understand why more people don't see it) Shield is compromised. ALL shield facilities are going to be riddled with unknown Hydra agents. Garrett (though not at the top of hydra) would likely be freed by some one at the Fridge even if it is currently under "shield" control. She knows Garrett is a enemy who if not contained is EXTREMELY dangerous. Being smart she realized that "Hey, taking this highly trained evil traitor to the place where we store the most DANGEROUS things on earth. When we have no real idea who is actually working with shield and we have no leadership/hierarchy still in place is a really BAD IDEA". Also Garrett was trained by FURY, he wasn't going to be cracked by anything less than weeks of torture/interrogation. Her mistake was trusting that Phil's guy was good and letting him have his moment of revenge on "the man who shattered his world"

2) I don't care if he has feelings for Skye. Neither does he. He is a highly trained agent (by Garrett who has clearly been involved with HYDRA a long time judging by his knoweledge of Sitwell) He may care for her but that changes NOTHING (besides a nagging feeling of almost guilt in the back of his head that will torture him throughout the series). She is an unknown element that HYDRA is interested in. Seducing her to the dark side is smart.

3) To those who claim he is too "nice" or "kind" or "did this" or "said that" He has the highest espionage scores since THE BLACK WIDOW. Of course he can pull off a nice kind if slightly awkward agent. He was deep undercover. The HYDRA (centipede, ect.) people that they came across wouldn't know he was anything but shield and he would do nothing to expose himself until the endgame (which was suppose to be millions of people being zapped by the giant aircrafts). He decided letting Garrett die when the whole HYDRA thing was already out there wasn't worth it.

4) Lorelei had to touch Ward to take control of him indicating he has a strong will. Strong will means WARD is NOT brainwashed. Otherwise her talking to him saying "men kneel before her," would have been enough (as seen with the bikers)

5) If he had an eye trigger he would have found a way to tell the team after they removed one from Akela's eye. Like writing it on a napkin behind his back or something equally simple and robo-eye solving.

6) There was blood. They are dead.

That about covers it on the Ward is evil front. On another note. I REALLY don't want Simmons to turn evil (she would have to be turned her being evil to begin with would be too much of a stretch) so I'm choosing to view the "I'm getting better comment" as a foreshadowing of her lost innocence (the girl who is worried about not calling her parents). I love Fitz as always and wand Garret to suffer for making him cry. I also get why the baddies want to keep him (its not just 'cause he's cute) he is brilliant look at what he made in few minuets (seconds?) in the highly stressful battle situation in The Hub, the now Shield seemingly shield wide use of the night night gun, and that pocket escape maker thing. All of which Garrett knew about. Also notice that the thing-a-mabob Fitz made in The Hub is used against the plane.

WOW I talk/typed a LOT sorry for rambling on.
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Fitz crying was a really strong, bold move. Normally, an action TV show would never show a guy crying, even if he's the house nerd and not the soldier. But, everything he believed in came into question and it broke his heart.

I loved the episode and I hope they handle the Ward-mole-evil thing very well, but for me, the scene (not plot) that surprised me in a good way was Fitz. Well done.
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Couldn't agree more re Fitz
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OK, so Ward was really really angry at someone, because of the shot & almost-dead Skye. And now it turns out, that he plays in the same team as the shooter? Bullshit. Seriously jumped the shark for me.
Ward was kind of boring, yes, but this Hydra-fan-stuff seems to be a bit ad hoc.

Other parts of the episode were great!
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Holy shunk, I've tried to stay away from spoilers until I could catch up with this episode and MIND. IS. BLOWN! Not Ward!!! Not after he kissed Skye! This is getting good :)
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HE didn't kiss Skye. She kissed HIM!
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Too bad this episode had to happen after a large chunk of the audience has abandoned the show. I would like to think that word of mouth could bring them back, but the reality is that it won't.
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I'm disappointed that they just (presumably) killed off Victoria Hand, I was really liking what they were doing with the character; it's just dumb that they clearly didn't have any further plan :(
[It seemed to me that this version of the character was an amalgamation of the comics versions of her and Maria Hill, and that while Hill is shown as more heroic &less authoritarian in the MCU Hand is even more so (authoritarian &unheroic). Also she's the only character so far in the MCU who in comics is homosexual, and they both did nothing to promote said fact AND killed her off-great! :(]
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frankly I still find Ward painfully bland/uninteresting, but it looks like he'll get facial hair now; for some reason in tv that specific change being allowed for the actor of an otherwise physically "pristine" character, often correlates [not saying it's causation] to the character suddenly showing more dimension/emotion (Capt Sisko of DS9 comes to mind particularly)
At least for me, in a show like this where there was no enigmatic ambiguity of character setup for the turn [tho now I think of it any character w/such a setup on another show turned out to actually be arguably the "most" good person in said show...], even after the double agent reveal I find him boring :/
Except that it now seems to have all been a lie, that "more emotionally committed" kick he'd started on was something I was starting to care about. [And as I write that I realize that said kick might actually be the truth, in which case this is all a {highly ill-conceived and horribly murderous} way to do as he confessed he wanted to and keep Skye {et al? or just Skye?} safe by infiltrating and killing all of Garrets remaining allies. Allies whom it seems may soon include the 3 or so super-villains the show's set-up. Should all of that happen I'll cut "Handsome" the slack of all his initial dullness and like him]
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Something nobody has mentioned, Garrett mentioned that Stillwell was the one who had recruited the Hydra agents (Garrent didn't know which of the SHIELD soldiers were actual Hydra), so Ward could be an undercover agent since Stillwell is dead.
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Coulson's death experience mystery and the related clairvoyant theme helped carry the show but it was still missing that great overlying adversary to drive the series long term.
Hydra is the answer.
This episode was the high point of the series and I have high expectations going forward.
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It has been a popular theory that Ward is a double/triple agent ordered by Coulson to infiltrate Hydra and Hand is not actually dead, that either they use fake bullets or use decoys like robots to replace Hand. But just a food for thought, would'nt Garrett noticed or be suspicious . I actually dont know what level he is, but his level is probably high enough or the same with Coulson and May . That said, working as a specialist of shields and responsible for training agents, would'nt he have known practically all the tricks shield use? Because If you're in charge of training specialist, you must probably know a LOT... To have him easily fooled by decoys and fake bullets and blood seemed to be an insult to his expertise and skills. And I dont want to underestimate him, since Shields probably just does'nt put anybody incharge of training their specialist... he must be very cunning and skilled of his craft...
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No worries, Loeb and Bell said this in the following interview:

http://www.blastr.com/2014-4-11/agents-shield-producer-clears-air-shocking-apparent-death

"Let's say that Ward definitely killed [Hand and the other two agents]," he said. Bell went on a little longer, though, and what he said next could be considered wiggle room for the character's return someday.
"It's the Marvel Universe... But he definitely put three shots in her, and he killed her," he said.
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Why is Hand so special? It's ok to execute the two other nameless SHIELD agents, but she must be spared? And Coulson would give the ok on a double/triple murder in order to release Garrett into the wild to try and learn his plans without even trying extreme interrogation on him?

That would suck.
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Might have been said, but now taht we know Garrett brainwashed Nicki from Misfits aka the woman in the flower dress (why can't I think of her character name in this show), I don't think it would be too far a jump for Ward to also have been brainwashed. That would certainly explain his lack of emotions and his cardboard style of acting, since the programming would have been to make him a killing machine loyal to the clairvoyant. I like the theory because it would mean that he could be brought back from the brink, and it would explain his vague disinterest in Garrett's story at the end.

That would also say a lot about Garrett as a person, because if he's aware that Ward isn't truly engaging him it means he is basically just talking to himself and thus revealing how much of a narcist he truly is.

Raya, Riza, Maya... Seriously what is flower dresses name?
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Staff
Raina!
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Thanks it was killing me
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I have to say, I suspect they found a way to fake the deaths in the plane. While everything seemed real enough, it sort of seemed out of character for Agent Hand to suggest that Ward shoot Garret right there and then. It is not that she has qualms about killing people; simply I don't believe that is the way she would go about it. They need information about Hydra and they had a top asset in custody. Makes no sense. I know this sounds unlikely as hell, but I call this as a very elaborate set up to infiltrate Ward.
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I was afraid they were going to go that direction. I like Ward better as an agent of Hydra. I believe his far away look, was his conflicted feelings for Skye. He'll probably turn back in the end to say her. Hopefully sacrificing himself in the process. But i found this on Blastr:

http://www.blastr.com/2014-4-11/agents-shield-producer-clears-air-shocking-apparent-death
"In a new interview over at IGN, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producers Jeffrey Bell and Jeph Loeb were asked just how serious Hand's condition is after taking three rounds from Ward's sidearm. Bell didn't mince words.

"Let's say that Ward definitely killed [Hand and the other two agents]," he said."



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I think I commented elsewhere - we can expect a Darth Vader a la Luck getting electrecuted by the emperor type scene in the future, if this is the case :D
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*Save her, not say her lol.
I also agree that it seemed out of character, for Hand to suggest Ward shoot Garret. But maybe someone she cared about, was killed because of Garret or HYDRA. Grief and rage will sometimes, make people act out of character.

Hail HYDRA!
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That was my thought. It seemed rather forced and stupid for her to suggest Ward kill him right there on the plane. As if he wasn't in enough trouble for killing a captured enemy. AND, never a good idea to fire bullets inside a plane.
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"You should really look up the word boring in a dictionary." - Skye

Why do I feel like that was a thinly veiled jab at the fans of the show? Haha. We get it, you're making him more bad ass. Hey, I can't criticise a show for taking fan feedback and addressing it.
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A few episodes ago, when Lorelei was controlling Ward, I also found it suspicious that Ward tried shooting May AFTER Lorelei's collar was fastened around her neck. At first I dismissed it mostly as an editing choice, since you can't show both scenes simultaneously (without split-screen at least), but it piqued my suspicion.
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Oh, didn't catch that one! We're gonna have a ball finding all those little crumbs. :)
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This episode was mind blowing for me as well. If Ward really is bad/stays bad, then I am breaking up with this show. I am too invested with these characters - I feel as betrayed as the team is going to feel when they find out. I would be perfectly happy if it turns out he is a double agent, but unfortunately I think he is a triple.

Looking back, he summed it up in episode two when he told Skye that he just had a very different view of the world to her. Unfortunately I can see how Hydra would appeal to him, the idea that people need to be controlled to be truly safe. Having just seen the movie, Hydra people don't view themselves as evil, just as people with a different view of how peace should be achieved and order maintained. He says to Skye in her first interrogation that he wants world peace - we thought sarcastically - but Hydra thinks that is what they provide. I hate this twist but think he really is Hydra.

If he was playing Skye, that's it for me. Hopefully that was the only thing that wasn't part of his mission and it is what will draw him back to the team sooner rather than later. It was done so awkwardly, can't decide whether it was because he was acting out the romance and it was fake, or because it was the only thing that wasn't fake and so he was doing it reluctantly. His discomfort over her becoming a shield agent could have more than one meaning also. Next week is make or break for me.
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THIS is what Agents of SHIELD should have been from the beginning. It took a long time to get here.

* I totally forgot that Skye gave Ward the hard drive. That's NOT good.

* BUT I'm going on record that Ward is deep undercover for SHIELD. Garrett mentioned that he's not at the top of Hydra, so SHIELD needed a way to get to them. His melancholy look at the end was remorse at what he did/is doing. It's also possible that killing the 3 people, including Hand was a fake out, all designed to get Garret's full trust. Finally, I point to the scenes from next week -- the announcer said something like, "And Ward shows the team who's side he's really on." That seems to be a pointless statement if he's just going to show them what we've already seen -- that he's with Hydra.

* The producers sure went out of their way to make throw us off track. I mean could they have made Trip look more menacing and evil than they did without having him twirl his mustache and belt out a maniacal laugh?

* I had a hard time believing that the BUS was not made out of more bullet resistant material than that. Those bullets cut through the hull like it was tin.
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damn that sigil change from shield's do hydra's was fucking cool!
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I honestly didn't think Hand was the Clairvoyant, it was wrapped up too easily with last week's episode... I wasn't sure it'd be Garrett though until Hand mentioned that Garrett is the one who threw suspicion onto Coulson then it was blatantly obvious... but I didn't see Ward being the mole coming at all, I didn't think it'd be Trip because they had that too obvious of a suspect, but not Ward. confuses the whole show for me and honestly makes me think it was a spur of the moment decision to take a main character and turn him into a baddie.. also, I don't think you need to see the movie to assume Hydra was still alive and kicking, anybody with any basic knowledge of Marvel would know this is one of, if not the, main opponent for SHIELD.
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I was sure Hand caught Coulson's scent because of Blake. I might have to go back and check on that.
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Was Ward Hydra all along? I don't think so. It seemed to me that he turned Hydra at the end of the episode. Garret seemed surprised when Ward killed Hand and the other Agents. Ward had let his emotions get the best of him, killed an innocent man, everything he believed sort of collapsed, so he snapped. That's why Ward was sitting numb at the end. He was thinking, wtf, good is bad and bad is good.
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I'm pretty confident Garrett recruited Ward into Hydra when he was his S.O. That doesn't necessarily mean he knew Ward's role in all the Hydra subterfuge. I was sure Ward was using Garrett as an excuse to infiltrate the Fridge.
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See my comment above for my own guess as to Ward's allegience and reason for his look at the end.
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just because Garrett didn't know Ward was also in Hydra doesn't mean he wasn't in it all along. could have easily just not been aware of it since it wasn't out in the open for so many years
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Awesome!!!! That is the only word I can use to describe this episode, the best one so far!
So Garrett is the Clairvoyant, truly shocking! Ward turning his back on Coulson, almost as shocking. Hydra infiltrated on SHIELD, not so much.
Why did Fury have the need to keep an eye on Coulson? To make sure that Hydra didn't figure out what he did to bring him back? That's why I still think it's hard to believe Garrett really is the Clairvoyant. I mean, the Clairvoyant always showed a lot of curiosity as to how Coulson came back and Garrett just don't seem to be a guy that takes special interest in this minor details. Which makes me question: who is the leader of Centipede?
The way I see that is the real threat to SHIELD and it's not Garrett, the whole revelation of where his loyalty really lies didn't sound like the revelation of a true villain. For me it was more like he was making clear he had joined the "winning" team, but he is not the coach of this team.
The real mistery is the identity of the leader of Centipede. Agent Hand (R.I.P) said that Hydra infiltrated SHIELD as deep and high as level 10 agents, maybe one of those agents is the leader of Centipede.
As for Ward I think Skye will be the only one to see goodness in him once his betrayal is revealed, she is quite capable of defying Coulson for Ward. As an 0-8-4 she might end up being the key to the secret behind all this, Centipede's quest for Coulson's return and this whole Clairvoyant thing (seems a little strange to me that after all this time chasing the Centipede they just find something worst and apparently unrelated).
Is really Hydra and Centipede unrelated? Is Centipede a facade for Hydra? Or is it a third part agency infiltrated on SHIELD as well? And what do all of them want anyway?
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In partial answer to your last question... previews for next week showed Ward talking to the girl in the flower dress, who was with Centipede. AND, we had been led to believe Clairvoyant was directing Centipide, but now we see he's Hydra.
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Humans are not inherently good nor inherently evil. They are simply alive. Which makes them inherently self-serving (as are all creatures that walk the earth).Whether our deeds be altruistic or despicable, we do them in our own best interest.
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Indeed. The success of our species is due entirely to our almost infinite adaptability. We're capable of almost anything when survival demands it. What it comes down to is the environment, and our ability to shape it, kind of a fragile feedback loop. Ultimately, our own self interest is in creating and supporting a society in which we can live to our full potential, and opposing any that offer violence and oppression. Alas, the brain is a fragile instrument (comes with the adaptability) which can be easily put out of whack, particularly in childhood (e.g., Ward). Given a true choice, though, an undamaged human will always choose peace over conflict, amity over enmity, and a social role rather than isolation. It just makes evolutionary sense to go with what makes you feel better. Eliminate childhood abuse (verbal, physical, and ideological) and remove the systemic flaws in our culture that reward anti-social behaviour, and we would tend to resemble creatures that are inherently good.
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This episode was AWESOME!!!

I'm not even sure where to start. I had become uneasy of Ward after what Lorelei said about him, but I just thought that was from the Asgardian rage. But when he just shot the fake Clairvoyant with absolutely no remorse, something did not feel right and I was not sure about him at all. Then, when he watched Garret, who had fooled me, at first confused, and then with that stone face look, I started to look for more hints...and I found them. On the other hand, Triplett had the dumbfounded and betrayed look I had expected of Ward when finding out your mentor betrayed everything you believed in.

Agent Hand (called that red herring!) foolishly made the assumption that all of Coulson's people were clear, but Ward had not been with Coulson and the others when Garret was outed. So first he volunteers to accompany her to take Garret to the fridge. But that look he had as they walked down the hall clinched it for me. That's when I figured out he'd been Hydra all along. His look was cold, calculating and menacing, not a look he'd ever shown before, not even when he'd cleared the hallway for him and Skye to escape. Then he had that same cold-faced stare in the plane, not a look of rage, but a look of a person in a holding pattern. And then Hand gave him the opportunity to act, and all Garret had to do was look at him for a moment, and that was it. That look he gave Garret after he killed everyone else was the look you give your commanding officer. And I believe that final look on his face was the look of the real Agent Ward, Hydra.

Yes, I do believe Agent Hand is dead, which is really too bad since while I didn't like her very much, I respected her. But there is no way the whole scenario could be a set-up for Ward to infiltrate Hydra, there'll be plenty of time on the plane for those bodies to go cold. Now I'm going to have to re-watch every repeat episode so that I can start looking for clues.

I so knew May was no traitor!!!

Now Garret did fool me, I really fell for his act. But damn, did he ever turn! He looked not only evil, but downright psycho at the end. But I do now wonder about what Agent Garret told Skye, that she had changed Ward. I kinda' wonder if Ward will eventually get a chance for redemption. If so, I hope its way down the line; I really like this new Agent Ward...talk about deep waters.

Coulson really needs to get over what May did, she was just looking out for him. I hope Fury sets him straight.

Once this mess straightens out, FitzSimmons are in so much trouble for going behind Coulson's back to analyze Skye's blood. They're just lucky that this Hydra mess happened before they were discovered. ;D

I can't wait until next week!
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The minute we met Garrett, he felt like a plant, but I tried to go along with the storytelling. As soon as Ward shot the Clairvoyant stand-in, I got the inkling he was a traitor. But having them both be traitors, that's the thing I missed, the "he trained me, of course I'm like him, hail Hydra" connection, and that's where they got tricky-twisty for this viewer.

Honestly, having Garrett be the Clairvoyant after Captain America 2 has a bigger villain, an AI villain, driving the Hydra storyline was very odd and confusing and almost clumsy in how each stepped over the other. Demanding it be someone we met really didn't work for me, why couldn't it be anybody? We have barely scratched the surface of the inner workings of SHIELD. I hope they give some answers as to why Garrett wants info on Coulson so badly that he ends up risking a lot of his Centipede organization and how that ties into those plots (as well as where Garrett got the time to remote-control his bomb-in-brain guys).

Sitwell being a turncoat wasn't anything, I liked it better when that level of icky bureaucrat ends up being a good guy.

Hand was too obvious and ham-fisted for the audience, I agree with you that she was too much a red herring. It's too bad they didn't write her smarter, the comic character has a lot more depth than this show gave her and could have been fascinating to watch get sucked under for a cause she thinks is right (nobody who says "hail Hydra" really should be believing they're doing anything for the greater good).

I agree with your take on Ward's character weaknesses not being justified for the stilted development and performance of the character, but I have a feeling that in the next few weeks those criticisms won't really feel like they matter as the character truly comes out of his shell and does bad.

Kaitlin, Hydra never thought they were doing right in the sense of protecting the people, they were taking out targets who could stop them, the pretense for Project Insight was just that: a pretense. They targeted people like Tony Stark and President from Iron Man 3 and such. They think they are doing right only insomuch as they are an offshoot of Nazi ideals and they want to rule the world.

If Ward turns out to be a triple-agent, I think I'd be a little disappointed because it's just too easy. Comic Books do this too, a lot of villains end up heroes or antiheroes, and it generally feels cheap there in a medium known for cheap moves, so on TV it'd be even more a cop-out.

So wow, you focused a hell of a lot on only part of the episode. Not one comment about Coulson's lack of confidence in May and that whole standoff, or shooting her with an icer (thank god these guns have a new name) when it seemed like he shot her dead. or did I miss it? The rest of the episode was just action, and they even gave lip service to the larger events such as "Captain America defeated the helicarriers but is missing" - don't mention why the helicarriers are a danger or what's really going on at all, show, lazy prick tv show.

Anyway, it was a good but not terribly great episode, and the tie-in felt like it didn't really match up with the timing of the movie in any way, hopefully that'll come together better next week.
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"So wow, you focused a hell of a lot on only part of the episode."

That happens sometimes when something big happens and I notice the review is getting longer and longer and I haven't covered anything. Since it looks like Coulson's issues with May are going to be an ongoing thing, I figured I'd touch on it more next week.
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Kaitlin: "Someone threw out the idea that Ward was a traitor in the comments last week, and I can't remember who it was, but if it was you: Nice work! I remember seeing that comment and thinking, "Huh, that's an interesting theory!" And then I went about my day eating gummi bears or whatever."

Me, last week: "Ward killing Thomas Nash kinda stank of him being a turncoat, there really wasn't any justification for it on an emotional or logical level except that he needed the guy to be shut up."

So thanks for the "nice work" comment. Now how about sharing those gummi bears? Also, is that ALL your day entails? I want that job. ;-)
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So no one thought it was a good idea to bulletproof the plane?!
I mean Fury's got a swiss army car in the Winter Soldier but they can't stick a bit more metal on a flying bus?
Come on guys!!
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I thought that the episode was trying a little too hard with all of its numerous twists; even with my suspension of logic.

Going out of its way to set up Hand and her followers as Hydra, only to dispel that notion. Hand's actions not making a whole lot of sense (just assuming things and downright ordering an execution of Coulson and his team merely based on twisted perspectives).
Shame about Garrett turning out to be the big bad, but of course it had to be done for the sake of a surprise. He never struck me as smart enough to pose as a Clairvoyant.
Ward's betryal I actually didn't mind. Probably made the most sense of all these events (and if it earns him the right not to be burdened by an evil nickname anymore, I can get behind that). Of course I still fear that the writers might try to outsmart themselves and make him a double agent or something. Or triple at that point.

So entertaining - yes. Convicing or smart - not necessarily. But at least it's still a whole lot better than the first half of the season.
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Some thoughts (warning: movie spoilers)

People were noticing the cryptic comments made Lorelei in Yes Men and odd changes in Ward's behavior afterward....

We also know that "Odin" is actually Loki and he has plans for Lorelei.

We also know that Hydra has Loki's scepter.

Probably too much speculation on my part, but these could be ingredients for an overarching plot......
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Oh, my thought with HYDRA having Loki's scepter (was that actually HYDRA or was the sort of a third unaffiliated organization, they didn't seem too perturbed) was they were withdrawing something from it to make Quicksilver and the Scarlett Witch, so I started wondering again if that guy Coulson found in the bunker was maybe more frost giant related than kerli or whatever else Sif listed off for Coulson when he asked and that Coulson and Skye were injected with a distilled version of whatever Quicksilver and SW were injected with. Now this gets me thinking that maybe those are people we weirdly can, well, not trust exactly, but the scepter likely fell into Fury or one of the Avengers control (heck, our team would have cleaned it up) and that cryptic underground area looked a lot like areas Fury approached Peter (?) in at the end of Thor. And as I am writing all this, you are talking about the mid credit scene, right?
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Yes I agree with you.I think is not Hydra that have Loki's scepter but a third unknown to date organization
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Actually, it's Hydra. Baron von Strucker (the guy at the end of CapAmerica 2 movie) is known in the comic books as the Supreme Hydra. Also, I'm almost certain they mentioned that they were Hydra at the end of the movie
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I think Ward really does have feelings for Skye (that has nothing to do with if he's a traitor or not)

Also Coulson shooting May, jaw on the floor (doesn't matter if it was just to throw her down still shocked)

- Agreed Team Fitz
- Not only May had assembled the team but Coulson had been doing stuff for Hydra all this time without knowing?? Use the Kree (the blue alien in T.A.H.I.T.I.) in you Coulson & kick their asses, everybody is using you and finally tell the Avengers you're alive after all
- Samuel Jackson will appear in the finale to rebuild S.H.I.E.L.D
- Forgot about Ward having the hard drive. No I don't think he gave it back. Us Greek fans have the theory that Ward is playing traitor to infiltrate Hydra
- Hydra logo at end? THE COOLEST
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I also believe Ward might have feelings for Skye (after all her prescene on the Bus was not planned for and might not have been in his parameters, plus he already had her trust before he sort of set up that date.

I was also shocked because I don't really know how they could tell which of the myriad of guns laying around were icers or real guns. Of course I wouldn't put it past Fitz to have inscribed an I on the non lethal guns.

I sort of started to doubt Ward still have the hard drive, or at least the only one, because Coulson told Skye to get that back on line and she didn't even pause with an oh crap. I mean, she would only be like that because she just doesn't have it.
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finally hydra is front and center. The show suffered from not having a more established enemy/organization to deal with. Yes there was the deathlok thing, but not as well known as hydra. I am happy to have seen the movie before an episode, but this episode better incorporated what happened from the film than the other thor centric eps which you didn't have to see the movie to understand what was going on. I'm still on the fence about the show though. I think it is just riding the coattails of the films and still feels average, but when ward shot agent hand at the end, that was a nice twist and it give me hope about the direction of the show now.
Also the cgi still needs work, yes it is a tv show with a limited budget, but does it have to look so fake? (blowing up the plane's cargo bay door). Do what CA:tws did, use more practical effects than relying on too much cgi.
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This show is definitely getting better!
Didn't see the turn coming until Ward asked to be on the plane, However the theories about agent Hand not being dead could be an interesting turn, although maybe it would be overkill (Coulson, Fury)?
I'm guessing the team will find out as soon as the plane lands or takes a different course because Garret en Ward have taken control of it
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If Ward was to suddenly turn out to be good it would seem like a copout. If he really is bad then it gives one incentive to go back and watch all the previous episodes to see if there's any change in the way his actions are interpreted.
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I lean toward the Winter Solider angle and the whole reason they may have let us believe that his feelings for Skye might be real is to give an angle where they might reach him.
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Keep in mind, in the first episode, Coulson did say that Ward had the highest espionage scores since Romanoff. We should have paid a bit more attention to that little fact.
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Finally Marvel's new show has stepped up it's game, this can and will compete with DC's Arrow!
Love both shows but now I sit with bated breath for both the shows!

Way to hit it out of the ball park, Marvel! :)
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Ok, I somehow feel that Ward is not a bad guy, but it was a last minute attempt by Hand to establish Ward into Hydra as a double agent. Also, she may not be dead. Ward is too much of a patriotically nice person, albeit more reserved with his feelings sort of a guy to be with Hydra. We will just have to wait and see I guess.
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Love the Hand thought of putting Ward into Hydra theory. Thought that Ward was trying to incorporate himself in Hydra but not that Hand thought of it. Kudos
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i agree. it seemed a bit suspicious about why hand would be talking to ward about shooting the right clairvoyant. other posters mentioned he could've used an icer and she isn't really dead. It would make sense to see how far the hydra reach has gone and an inside man would be the best way to do it. Plus maybe as a brief bad guy, they'll finally give him more time to establish his character which is pretty bland at the moment.
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I agree too. It just seemed to expositional. Like "OK, Ward. I am going to give you the gun, and then you can shoot the real Clairvoyant..." Didn't seem like a human conversation. Side note: it was never proven Garrett was the Clairvoyant. Sure, he's Hydra, but he could have easily gotten the info Coulson called him out on as a reason for him being the Clairvoyant from the Clairvoyant because he was working with him and the Clairvoyant liked him enough to give him the info. Maybe it was Garret's plan to reveal himself so he could have Hydra kill them with their last memory being of a friend betraying them. Or maybe he's deep cover,A slip of the tongue isn't much of a reveal for somone as big as the show is (was?) making the Clairvoyant. I kind of agree with the podcasters at Phantastic Geek when they guessed the Clairvoyant will (would?) be a subtle yet powerful scene at the end of an episode, possibly the finale. I like that theory. Using a mistake made by a character as a reveal that they are the mastermind behind most if not all of the evil the protagonists have faced just makes him look wimpy.
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When it comes to spy/double agent movies, anything is possible.
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It would be so easy, though, for the Ward turn to be another smoke screen. What if this is all a plan, hastily thrown together by Hand, to fake the deaths of herself and the two guards so that Ward can get further inside Hydra by following . . . uh . . . the dude Bill Paxton plays?

So some stage blood and blanks (which, sure, SHIELD just has lying around), and suddenly Ward's a deep-cover hero instead of the goat.

Sounds pretty likely to me.
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I am pretty sure garett would notice. They are like 50000 feet in the air, he would just toss them out of the plane.
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How do you fake Headshots ?
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But he didn't shoot Hand to the head, right? I found that weird given how he killed the guards.
I woudl actually find it interesting if Ward was Hydra and then had a change of heart and agreed to be a double agent.
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we assume it's headshots.
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Though to be fair you can write your way out of anything.

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Holy crap. Headshots. Well, there goes that theory. But as you say, you can write your way out of anything, especially in the Marvel universe. Or it could be that the production team went with head shots, which they will feverishly hope we didn't notice when it turns out to be shots to the chest instead.

But yeah, that would be a significant oversight that is less likely than Ward being brainwashed, or just flat out bad. Which is fine, because Ward.
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I loved garrett :(
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It has been bugging me since I saw the episode, but is there any chance that the plane scene was a set up, that Word just pretended to be on Garrett's side and that Hand faked her death so that Word would infiltrate Hydra to figure out who is Hydra and who is not. I mean Hand did say that she could use a man with Word's abilities and it wouldn't be the first time we someone faked their death in this universe. Maybe this is just wishful thinking, I really don't want Hand to be dead I really like her character, I couldn't care less about Word in fact him being a bad guy is kind of a silver lining maybe we will soon be rid of him
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ward*
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Yeah, I also wish this to be true, as I liked what they were doing with Hand esp in this ep
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I haven't watched winter soldier sadly. I am also glad I didn't give up on this series, I was at the brink. And Fffffffffuuuuuuuu ward, u r a horrible human being
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Kaitlin, I need a date to the Captain America movie please!
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While I completely understand the need for continuity between the show and the, let me be the first to say (or another to say) BOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Even at the height of my teenage nerddome, there's a short list of movies that I'd wait in line to see opening weekend and even back then, I'm not sure if the Captain America sequel would have made the cut. Now, being real, the reveal of HYDRA being back and Nick Fury being "dead" I'm sure aren't huge bombs as they relate to the film and the Marvel universe, but still, something that would have been nice to enjoy on the larger scale of the film. If the co-worker who asked me if I'd seen it yet accidentally let these details slip, it wouldn't be a massive spoiler. But that the show, produced by the very same people who want me to both watch the show and see the movies busted out this spoiler...BOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

"I think the writers would argue they purposefully kept Ward from fully developing as a character for awhile, because he was a big fat liar who lies, but I'm just too much of a cynic to believe that they'd had that mapped out, too."

They might argue that Agent Handsome was by design. I and most people would call BS on that, but they could try. IF they did argue that it was intentional, that doesn't mean it was a good decision. Ward's cardboardness up till this point was one of MANY flaws with this show that threaten to keep it from seeing a 2nd season. I appreciate playing the long con, but that only works if you still have viewers left to con. And by the looks of the ratings, not nearly as many people were fooled as they would have hoped.

So, Bill Paxton is the bad guy, huh? I'm okay with that because the ONLY thing better than hero Bill Paxton is villain Bill Paxton


I've seen a lot of forced relationships on various shows, but Ward being all goo goo for Skye is at the top of my current list. So much so that they almost make Slade's obsession with Shado look organic and natural...ALMOST, cause c'mon, that whole thing is just ridiculous. But do I now have to change my thinking after the reveal of Ward being a bad guy? I would if I thought that Ward was playing her this whole time, but his feelings only came out because of Lorelei...and something tells me her BS-o-meter is TOP notch and his feelings are sincere. So, back into a solid 2nd as the more forced couple on TV.
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but his feelings (for Skye) only came out because of Lorelei

We don't know what Ward told Lorelei. It was May, who assumed she was talking about Skye!

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I'm not sure the details of how Lorelei found out much matter...it's not like anybody under her spell could lie to her. Which makes me question my hope that he's playing Skye.

And seeing as how the alternatives were either Skye or Simmons, Skye is a safe assumption.
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Skye is an obvious assumption. Which doesn't mean it's correct.

But that's totally a matter of interpretation and I only wanted to put it out there, that I think he wanted everyone to think he's in love with Skye. Damn, even Garrett wanted everyone to think Ward is in love with Skye. They must have had some hidden agenda.
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OR...Skye is an obvious assumption because IT IS correct.

Since he couldn't lie to Lorelei, and she was the one who brought this truth I've got a hard time believing that Ward Jedi mind tricked her into advancing his and Garrett's agenda.
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LOL @ the Slade/Shado reference. The only reason I'm not okay with it is because they're making it seem like a weird mirakuru thing.
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