Rating: 4/5 – If you’ve read my earlier take on the direction of Agents of Shield you know I’ve been pretty much down on the show. It’s got to overblown with the will they/won’t they sleep together crap, it’s been too afraid to go full blown super-hero – because no matter what people try to make it this is a super hero show – and whatever was going on between Keven Feige and whoever the guy is who runs Marvel’s TV division was hurting the obvious continuity. Before I go further let’s make on thing clear, the idea that most YouTube and blog reviewer have that it’s somehow impossible to connect the Movies, TV and Netflix together is one of the dumbest. The one thing that used to separate Marvel from DC was continuity. No, that did not mean that when Spider-Man fought the Green Goblin the Avengers would show up to lead a hand. What is used to mean that if Doctor Doom blown up the Baxter Building there would be a panel or two where Spider-Man see the explosion but was to busy taking down the Vulture to investigate. That sort of thing. DC finally pulled it’s head out of it’s ass with Crisis on Infinite Earth and got more on the continuity train too, which made their comics far better. At least until New 52. Okay enough of that rant. Let’s get the the review.
A Change is Gonna Come
Big changes with our core characters. Ultron happened, the Sokovia Accords are laws and now the Inhumans are assets rather than pawns in every megalomaniac’s stupid plans. Director Colson has been demoted to agent and he’s Mack’s partner and they are both still trying to catch up with Daisy who the world knows as Quake. Quake, on the other hand, is still on a mission to find anti-super powered gangs and criminals as well as track down a serial killer who goes after the same type. She comes in contact with him when they both go after the same group of criminals but only gets to see a fiery car and someone brutally murdering the criminals except one who he takes prisoner. Agent May is now Colson’s superior but trying to help him find Daisy because she feels what’s happened to the team is bullshit and doesn’t like the new direction Shield has taken.
Agent Simmons is everyone’s superior and she reports directly to the new director who we haven’t met yet but obviously no one likes. May slip Colson and Mack some intel that might lead them to Daisy but they have to act fast because they’ve been ordered to stay off the Daisy case because in the public eye she’s a wanted terrorist. You get the feeling that when they passed around the Sokovia Accord papers Daisy didn’t show up for the signing.
Yo Yo is back as a asset in Los Angeles and she’s working both sides helping everyone involved and trying to get Mack to break Shield’s fraternization rules, which is cute but I hope it doesn’t evolve to another round of will they/won’t they crap.
Meanwhile Agent Fitz is tinkering in his lab creating virtual reality but also he and Simmons hang out with Holden Radcliffe who now uses his science for Shield but has been working on the Life Model Decoy project. He constructed AIDA into a woman and shows Fitz who is at first distressed then changes his mind. Simmons finds out May secretly sent Colson and Mack to track Daisy and they have a confrontation because May feel Simmons is too cooperative with the new way things are going.
Daisy tracks down a place where the Ghost Rider might be stashing his car and a fight between her and Robbie Reyes happens with interesting results. During all of this a Asian street gang working with the Aryan Brotherhood find a mystery box with something really bad inside. That’s obviously going to be a thing in the future.
Meet the New Shield
I’ll be the first to admit that this episode was far better than most of the previous two seasons. First of all they are embracing being part of a wider Marvel Universe, and that’s a good thing. The decision to leap a year and six weeks into the future rather than start off right for the ending of the last story arc gives them more latitude to get out of the corner they painted themselves in with all the Inhuman stuff. We already know that the Inhumans are going to show up but they are not going to shoved down our throats. The message is, everything from the movies and the last two seasons happened, let’s live with it and move forward. There was enough action to keep you interested, no one was acting out of character and the breadcrumbs a show required to make you come back for the next episode were laid out with more thought than they have before. They aren’t going to resurrect Grant again (hopefully) and that get’s huge “THANK GOD” from me personally. Simmons has a good reason for how she’s acting, May has her reasons and Shield is obviously part of the government again where they belong.
The elephant in the room is, of course, Ghost Rider. I still hate the car. I hated it in the brief Robbie Reyes issues, I hated it in the promos and I’m not liking it any better in the series. However the Ghost Rider is acting like the Ghost Rider. Ghost Rider is the Punisher if Frank Castle was a flaming hell demon. In the days of that comic code they could only go so far with him but when the main comic companies dropped that bullshit and made Daniel Ketch the Ghost Rider he became what he should have been. Sure it got all convoluted with Johnny Blaze showing up and the whole Midnight sons thing, but the first 25 issues of the second volume of Ghost Rider is some of the best stuff in comics. As for the Ghost Rider on Agents of Shield, he looks good. Really damn good. They have not said what he was, but I’m hoping with Doctor Strange coming and a Ghost thing popping up in Shield we’re about to embrace magic in the Marvel Universe and that for me is what I see as perfection. They also stuck with the rules as set for the Ghost Rider. In the fight with Daisy it’s clear Ghost Rider does not want her to get in the but equally clear the Ghost Rider knows she an innocent and Ghost Rider does not kill innocents.
This was an over all good episode. I’m still a little burnt by the mistakes of the last two season but if they are cleaning them up I’m all for it. Let’s see what happens in the next episode where they seem to be expanding on who or what the Ghost Rider is. However I swear, if they make him a fucking Inhuman I’ll Mercy the writers of this show like the dirty birdies they are. (Oh, just look it up, kids.)