Not impressed with this show so far, not sure what they actually do that is so special? Last week I thought is was good, funny and with potential, I thought the story would start to develop - now it looks as if this is all we get.
This is what the show needs more of. Yes, the show was lacking a little bit in story, it felt very thrown together, but you had the action and excitement that SHIELD should be about. If they can give us this every week the show could develop a solid fanbase.
Currently this show has a 7.8 average rating. Now there are 192 ratings, but only 24 written-out reviews (with ratings). But of the written-out reviews, the average rating is only 6.25. So why is the overall average rating so much higher? Only angry people are willing to write?
A few assorted notes to start: Tahiti is still a magical place, Coulson wants Skye to feed misinformation to the public where necessary, and whatever even caused May to leave the field happened in Bahrain, and she was also known as "the cavalry" until then, which I think everyone will now agree makes sense?
Unsurprisingly, Skye has accepted Coulson's offer of a consultancy gig, even allowing . to take temporary custody of her van and taking up residence on "the bus," which is the fancy plane we saw in the pilot that's even more heavily featured this week. In other non-surprises, Ward is not so much a fan of Skye joining their team, such as it is, not that May seems so jazzed about it either, but she's not openly hostile to Skye like Ward is. And that's hardly the only intra-team tension, as Ward, Fitz/Simmons, and Skye all bicker among themselves, to which Coulson's basically like work it out, overachieving jerks.
The 0-8-4 referenced last week seems to be any object that's as yet unexplained, but the agents at least know it's in Peru, so they head to an Incan archeological site, and within a temple they find an artifact that they determine has been there for at least 1500 years. . is then accosted by Peru's military police, but luckily their leader "Commandante Camilla Reyes" is an old acquaintance of Coulson's. Fitz and Simmons determine that the artifact has a functioning power source, but before they can get any farther, rebels attack, forcing Ward to grab the thing and lead a retreat back to the plane. Once safely there, Fitz explains that the artifact is fueled by tesseract technology and as such contains lethal amounts of gamma radiation, so much like last week, we've got the potential of a ticking time bomb on our hands.
On the plane, Skye explains to Ward the concept of social change through social media by way of letting him understand her beliefs about freedom of information, and the two of them at least make an effort to see things from the other's point of view. Ward then senses that all is not right with the Commandante and her group, but while he and Coulson make a fight of it, May, flying the plane, ends up incapacitated by gas, while Fitz and Skye are captured, so Coulson ends up ceding control of the plane, whereupon we learn that the Commandante intends to use the artifact to crush the rebels, because attempting to harness power sources you don't understand never, ever goes wrong.
However, the non-Coulson . agents work together to free themselves from the cargo hold, with May earning the title of undisputed badass of the episode by dislocating her wrist on command to free herself from her restraints. The . underlings then use Fitz's drones to activate the artifact and blow a hole in the plane, and the resultant drop in cabin pressure causes the doors between them and Coulson to unlock, leading to using their individual talents and saving the day, although once again, May is such a badass that even Ward is again impressed; he also comes around on Skye enough to take on training her as a field agent.
In the end, the . misfits bond over beers as the artifact is safely dispatched from the Earth via "slingshot," but they're unaware that Skye tells the Rising Tide that she's infiltrated . Also, Fury shows up to berate Coulson for the damage to the plane, and if he's going to appear every time these guys cause insurance premiums to go up, we'll be seeing a lot of him. And that would be pretty awesome.
Let me get one thing out of the way, I didn't hate this episode as much as everyone else seems to. In fact, I found it an improvement over the Pilot. It had less cheesy one liners and better action scenes. The production values were impressive and film like for a TV series. And Samuel L Jackson cameoed. His appearance was probably the best thing about the episode.
The main problem I had with this episode is the same thing I had with the Pilot. The characters. They're one dimensional, stereotypical, and uninteresting. Except for Skye. This show is essentially an NCIS spin off in the Marvel Universe, and so far I prefer NCIS. At least NCIS has wit and likable personalities.
Aside from the characters, my other main problem with this series is it's procedural elements. What this show should have been was much, much more serialized. Marvel is such an incredible universe with decades and decades of material to work from, and limitless possibilities to develop new content for. This show should be like one of my favorite shows, 24. It needs to have a different serialized story every year, that will in turn tie into the Marvel films that are airing during the season's run.
It has the international element, it has the production values, what it needs is better writing. This entire show is a puzzle, and only some pieces are put together. It has some makings of a serial arc (with Skye being the glue that holds it together) but I think this show would have a lot more breathing room with a focus on serial storytelling. And it needs to handle the mix of comedy and drama better. Iron Man 3 was both hilarious and dramatic, often from one minute to another. It handled it's dramatic moments properly and it handled it's comedic moments properly. It didn't try to have comedy in a serious moment. Neither should this show. It's bringing it down.
++Skye, the only good character and good actress on this show besides Couslon. (And it doesn't hurt that she's hot)
++Samuel L. Jackson!
+Good production values
+Good action scenes
-Too much comedy in what's meant to be a dramatic moment
--Most characters poorly written, I don't care about any of them (except for Skye and Coulson)
This does not feel like Joss Whedons work, andIt definitely does not have the same feel as the movie. Joss has done shows about vampires, programmable sleeper spies and space cowboys but somehow this show is the one that comes off way to campy. I know the cast is still getting into character, but other than Sky and Coulson the acting is terrible, especially agent Ward. I am a believer in Joss so I am going to give it a chance, but so far I'm not impressed and this show should have been a easy win.
In a nutshell Episode 2 laid out the red, actually brown carpet for the award ceremony of predictable and dull. Ep 1 was basic introduction to the characters and out of faith to the source material a review was not forthcoming "Tune in for more next week folks!"
Ep 2 just limped out the screen like a slice of stale toast saved only by the spare piece of processed cheese hanging around in the fridge. It's OK we thought - EP 2 would begin to introduce the arc but nay, it was an ark - plot points delivered 2 by 2 and by the time the elephant was in the room we couldn't care less what the kangaroo was doing.
Does Coulson know Skye is still with Rising Tide? most likely
Will Coulson's secret daughter pop-up? probably
Will an episode be dedicated to flashbacks of May's trauma? pretty sure
Will there be a kiss between Skye and Brett? You bet
Will the death of either science tweedle Dum or Dee finally unite the team? yawn yes
If this is merely going to be a quest-of-the-week procedural show - find strange things, overcome strange things, team work makes the dream work, then this is already tired.
A little too McGiver style for me... it looks promising but they have to come up with some original ideas if they don't want to end up like 'Lucky 7'... you know that show right? No, you don't! cos it was canceled after the 2 episodes!
Oh dear is the simple review for this episode. The only good thing about it is that it ended.
The poor (and very obvious) script made me wonder if the writers where either children or where doing this in their spare time between "proper jobs" because this was far worse than the first episode - and that was cheesier then a triple cheese pizza!
Hands up who by 1/4 of the way through could work out that:
1) Sky was still in league with her buddies from whatever they where called - can't remember the name because I am really not that interested
2) That Coulson's friend who happened to turn up at the right time was going to double cross him
3) That the mysterious thing embedded in a wall would be a weapon
Because the writers may have well just stuck signs on the screen telling you because it was that obvious.
Plot flaws are just as bad:
1) Does anyone really honestly, truely, hand on their heart, swear to god (or whatever/whoever you believe in) think that a stuffing thin plastic life raft will REALLY block up a hole in an aeroplane and restore cabin pressure? Oh and not get punctured/torn to shreds by the jagged metal edges of the hole? Duh, even my child thought it was stupid!
2) The only good character who is against any sort of violence and combat suddenly has no issues with it and gets on with the job. While possible I would have found it more believable to see her in the corner muttering "not again, not again, not again" and general being as much use as a wet rag.
3) Is a secret government/mysterious agency really, REALLY going to get a complete stranger (Sky) into their mists without a LOT of background checks, changing her mobile phone or at least bugging her so much she would not be able to look at someone without being spotted. Let along stand on the ramp of a massive pane, with loads of people around and send a sneaky text to a group with anyone noticing??
4) Lets see... There is a large mysterious metal object buried in an Aztec/Inca ruin. It may have been there for millennia or something. It looked very well embedded. Yet on the sound of gunfire outside someone can just grab it and pull it straight from the wall without an effort or causing any damage to the ruin? Really? You being serious here? When did superman join this bunch?
This show has one more chance and then I am gone. This episode stinks worse than what cats leave behind in my garden when they visit!
I really like the first pilot episode however this is probably what the first episode should have been. This episode ticked all the boxes. Action, tech, humour, and plotting. Apart from great viewing what I found really interesting is that after watching I found myself ticking off reference points from all the Joss Whedon output I have seen over the years. For example the obvious extra segment after the main show has finished. This week it ticked 2 boxes - style link to the films and linking in Samuel L Jackson from the films. However the the reference point I really liked was the "Stun Spike" Agent Handsome used. A direct link to the weapon Simon Tam used to breakout River in Serenity. There are many more like this. It was surprisingly good fun geeking out on spotting the Whedon Tropes and there are many. The last trope is never play a player. At first I was surprised that Skye could receive a message from "Rising Tide" in a secret SHIELD facility on a plane that must be shielded as well. Then she is the master hacker! However not this worry - she will be the double agent for along time to come and she will follow Agent Coulsons default plan to draw out Rising Tide so that group can be brought into the SHIELD fold. It's all about family. Keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer... etc, etc.
As many reviews have observed, the second episode of a TV show is the one that tells audiences how things will function from week-to-week, now that the business of introducing the premise and characters is (mostly) finished. Will Agents of SHIELD focus more on action, or character beats? Will it be all superheroes or other phlebotinum from the Marvel films, or branch out into its own mythology? The results vary, and while the episode itself is entertaining and helps develop the core team of characters, it also shows an unwillingness to stand as its own storytelling entity.
The team is summoned to an archaeological dig in Peru where an 0-8-4 an object of unknown origin has been discovered in an ancient Incan temple. Getting the device to safety proves a challenge as the dig is attacked by the war-torn region's rebels soldiers, but Coulson receives aid from an old colleague, now-Commandant Camilla Reyes. Meanwhile, Fitz and Simmons work to figure out what the 0-8-4 is, and whether or not it poses a danger to the team, while Skye struggles to find a place within the newly-formed team and May tries to keep her background a secret.
From the beginning of the episode, there are Firefly-esque subtleties in how the plot is presented and the purpose of what viewers see. The teaser will throw any Browncoat back to "Out of Gas" by showing the heroes' vehicular home base and its leader in mortal peril, while the following scenes are constructed into a series of nice long tracking shots that take viewers through the Bus and let us get a sense of the layout. Like Serenity, the Bus is going to be the characters' home and the show wants us to inhabit the space and be comfortable in it.
Even taking into account the wonderful cameo appearance at the end and a general tone that's reminiscent of Joss Whedon's greatest artistic accomplishment, "0-8-4 is a slightly worrying yet very entertaining instalment and is likely to be the template for Agents of SHIELD episodes to come. There's dark potential lurking around the edges for the premise to dip into overly formulaic territory, but even the more 2D, archetypal characters are interesting and the team dynamic is very fun to watch. Hopefully the hints of a larger story arc will resolve into more interesting episodic stories as the show progresses.
It's really that last minute of the episode that'll keep me coming back. I'm not really interested in Skye's being a double agent. I'm not really interested in Melinda's inability to admit she was a really badass field agent back in the day for some backstory reason they're not even hinting at yet. Fitz and Simmons are entertaining, but not productive and "whole package" guy? Meh. This case was a typical weekly deal, didn't give us anymore of the big picture or any clues about what Coulson can never know (I'm personally betting robot). It was an alright episode, except for that last minute. The cameos and the banter are what make it.
Those of you following MARVEL'S AGENTS OF . will be pleased to know that the cheese level reaches 100% on the second episode with a teaser that hits all the cheesy cliches within seconds and continues to ride the lactose tide for the rest of the hour.
It's a bottle episode in which, of course, the team bonds and peril ensues etc etc but it's still great fun, even as you suspect this episode is so pared back because the first episode must have used up a lot of the budget.
HOWEVER, it has a superstar cameo in the last few minutes which might also explain that and a great last second gag. Worth all the proceeding procedural just for those last few golden minutes.
Well, this was better, I would say much better than the Pilot. But yet, some problems are still present. I detected some pieces of convenient writing but the most irritating element is the unrealistic scenes that ruin a very good episode. I am talking about the soldiers being reluctant to shoot in combat and the lifeboat scene. Can plastic hold such a hole? I think not. The convenient writing is how the lifeboat closed the hole just when the protagonist was about to meet the skies.
Now, on the bright side, this episode has a much more interesting and dense storyline, the characters were used better, the lovely Nerd Couple was everywhere and a major twist came out of nowhere, completely surprising us. Grant and Leo are so funny together, I see hilarious chemistry between those two, I want them to be best friends and Melinda is such a badass...
So far, so good (or better)! Waiting for the next episode with optimism!
That last scene was all shades of awesome. As was the episode.
I know agent C. is everyones favorite but he is still the least interesting part of teh show for me. He seems sort of datached. Like he doesn't care what happenes as long as what he wants gets done. I'm not fond of such characters at all.
On teh other hand the rest of the team is glorious. My favorite is definitely Ward. I like how he and Melinda seem to be reluctant parents to 3 kids but she is sort of a mentor to him as well while he seems to have very layered relationship building with Skye and something of a big-brother-little-brother dynamic with Fitz. Who is the second piece of the puzzle that is FitzSimmons. She seems to be the big sister int eh relatiosnhip but I still very much want them to actually be a couple that just is.
Skye seemed the odd one out but I think it was intentional. and while I'm not thrilled with her being a spy I think she will find her new family more appealing with time.
I liked the forming of the team and the banter and how everyone is competent at something and they all bring somethng differnt to the table.
0-8-4 as a stand alone episode had legs. Meaning it was a good ride. Yep, not very much wasted time on intros now, and a good flow of solid action. Confronted with a dooms day destruction device . gets the call to go to Peru. It ain't easy being, well called for a difficult accessment and extraction.
Those Nazis and their secret weapons of destruction sure have a long-reach. In a Mayan-esque temple lies a newly unearthed super weapon of suspected German orgin. You know the kind that's designed to end a war as well as a planet. Boy, what dark cabal wouldn't sell the farm for this technology.
By taking equal bits of history cum sci-fi, third-world unrest, and some good 'ol Indian Jones swashbuckling MAofS comes out as a team to reckon with. The action starts on the ground and escalates in the airborne "bus". While the team wasn't particularly likeable in the pilot now they're coming together, and infinitely more likeable beyond Sky, the interloper. Speaking of Sky, she's still the most likeable, but no longer the only one who is. That's a huge positive step up in my estimation. It's a fun disjointed team who got, well "jointed". And so the fun rides really get going. Add a great cameo by Samuel Jackson to the above. This show may be stupid, but now it's getting "stupid good" allowing one to invest in the team. I can't wait to see the upcoming plots of squashing evil!
If this episode is any indication of how the rest of the TV series will play out, then we're all in for a very, very exciting ride. This is a positively lengthy review, because there's just so much to cover.
I'm actually struggling right now to find the words where to begin, and what parts to highlight. This episode was set in two distinct locations: the first being down on Earth's surface, in Peru in a very Tomb Raider-ish type temple. That first half was so jam packed with excellent action shots (it's a sci-fi series, I'm going to give it the benefit of the doubt for some of the cheesier stunts, like using too many rolls-to-dodge-bullets). Not only was the action interesting and engrossing, but it flowed together with movie-esque editing style and sharp, professional choreography. The second half takes place on what's called the 'BUS', the super sexy huge aircraft that Coulson's team using as a mobile HQ. Without spoiling anything, let's just say that while the events were kind of predictable by Whedon standards, they were no less enjoyable for watching the excellent chemistry between the actors and subsequent bonding of their character personas.
For those who were worried about this show being nothing like the Avengers movies series, let me tell you, compared to the pilot, this episode grabbed us all by the lapels and shook us awake. Joss Whedon wrote the movie; Joss Whedon writes this TV show. It stands to reason that they'd be completely in sync, right? In terms of writing and filming, anyway. And it is, even if it does have the unavoidable alterations to fit a 42 minute TV format. Let's be frank: it was funny, it was a thrill to watch,and it was everything so many sci-fi and 'superhero' series fail to be--quirky, pleasant, and actually dangerous. Not goofy dangerous, but real danger dangerous.
And I digress. In regards to the matter of character development, this 0-8-4 gives us a taste of what it is SHIELD handles all the time, but simultanerously, blatantly takes a 'character bonding' pie and smushes it into our face. The rest of the episode seemed well paced, but the delivery from 'I don't trust you! I'm giving you the cold stare treatment' to being all buddy-buddy blipped a few times on my bullcrap radar. We can chalk it up to the characters being in a dangerous situation and letting the adrenaline rush sort things out, because in reality, friendships and trust are cemented through 'live or die' situations all the time. It's true. It's a teensy bit tacky at some points, but then this is the Marvel universe. Not 24. Still, you get a sense of continuing awkwardness between actors (except Simmons and Fitz, who seem like they were born from the same womb to play these geekdom roles) who are still getting used to each other, but that 'first date' awkwardness is doomed to wear off. Probably sooner than later. There's just the one thing;Brett Dalton is trying way, way too hard. I'll leave it at that.
Oh, and Samuel L. Jackson shows up. And with a lot more screen time than I ever imagined. Moreover, his appearance didn't feel like a 'Hey kids, I'll show my face on TV so we hike a few numbers in ratings', which some of us feared would happen. It was genuine, it was funny, it was kinda scary even, and it was so very, very Nick Fury.
So all in all, it doesn't go over the top with the comic book cheese. It maintains your interest. There are some laugh out loud moments. We need more of this.
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