From the moment the episode started with the men in the red kabuki masks, I was intrigued. The story revolves around Akela, a former SHIELD Agent, involved with a string of heists. As a character, Akela is tough as nails and extremely compelling. The way she helped Simmons with the injection into her own eye was cringe worthy. After being lost on a mission and held captive, with a damaged eye, she was rescued by anonymous organization. The likelihood that this organization isn’t the same organization they encountered in the Pilot feels unlikely. Akela’s vision was restored with a bionic eye, but along with it came a kill switch. Thankfully, it was disabled and she will get a fair trial. I hope that we see more from her in the future.
With the sympathy of Akela suddenly mounting midway through the episode we realize that it is as much Akela’s story as it is about the heists. In fact, I’d argue the heists were just a motivation to see Akela and what this mystery corporation could do. The heists in question, involved diamonds and wasn’t particularly interesting. Though it did lead t a very interesting scene with Ward speaking Russian and fighting through the warehouse.
Unfortunately, this episode didn’t lend much toward characterization. Skye got some moments to expand on her character yet again. Whereas FitzSimmons did some jury rigging with Akela’s eye and freed her. This is one area I am getting tired of. We aren’t getting very much about the characters. Although this episode had far fewer quips and references to the larger Marvel Universe. As far as the show building it’s own character, that was a major benefit. We did get teased even more about the nature of Coulson’s return. It is a great mystery, however, if they let it drag on too long the run the risk of never answering or putting it off to the end of the series. I don’t believe that it is a mystery that merits carrying the whole series as it is not that important.
Week after week, Agents of SHIELD treat us to a bevy of action sequences. Each sequence is top notch and entertaining, but I am failing to see the urgency of the fight sequences. Aside from “0-8-4” I haven’t felt the team was ever in any danger. Yes, I know that the characters aren’t going to be in any major danger aside from possible season endings (This isn’t The Walking Dead, after all). I should still feel tension and feel like things may not work out for the team. That is one of the major downfalls of the show. The team is too successful. I never feel like they are going to fail at what they are setting out to do. It would be nice to see them fail once in a while.
Despite my quibbles with the episode and the lack of character development, it was probably my favorite episode behind the Pilot.
What did you think of the episode?