Why Marvels Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D Season Two, Episode Four is Awesome

Hydra really work hard to live up to their slogan.”

As I've been saying, Agents has gotten off to a really strong start this season, maintaining the highs of the latter half of the first; this episode is no different, but there is a definite feel now that they're taking their time to build the seasons plot once again. Don't panic, though, because I'm not warning of anything like the stutter stepping first half of the first season; this time round, they aren't waiting for major film releases, and thus their story building is much more fluid and enjoyable.

From here on out, there are spoilers for this episode.

This episode centres around a painting of Mary and the baby Jesus; as the only object to survive a parish burning to the grown (and completely unscathed at that), it has become somewhat of a holy relic. The only catch is, there's some of that strange Kree (alien) writing on the back of it that Coulson has been scribbling. The plot thickens.

Learning of this, Coulson and his Agents look to steal it away t study; to do this, Coulson and May go undercover at the celebration party for the painting, posing as a high society couple. This gives plenty of laughs and awkward out-of-character moments and gags, even if it is somewhat cliché. The chemistry between the two is more evident here, though, and gets a lot of air time. I enjoy the play between the two, though I'm not sure if we ever will or should see the two get together.

Fitz keeps on developing, and keeps on giving some powerful drama; this time it looks like he's finally actively trying to move on from Simmons. Saving the bus and the team was a great way to show he's still got it, and the sharing of “a beer between the boys” was nice to see; it remains to be seen whether this is true healing, though, or whether there's more trouble in poor Fitz's future.

Skye's story is still sort of strolling along, but now Rayner has been co-erced by Dr. Whitehall and Hydra to retrieve the #084 that Skye's father possesses, we might see that thread take a leap forward. The rest of the team are getting developed at a fairly even pace, with good dialogue and interaction here and there to ease them into the team; it's a tactic that's working, too, as Triplett (who we've obviously seen more of), Mack and Vance are all very enjoyable characters that gel well with the rest of the team.

It's nice to see the show getting to really grapple with a major villain like Hydra, and it shows that the creators have faith in the premise. What we've seen so far is enjoyable and really feels like a good adaptation of the comics version. I look forward to seeing more of Whitehall, in particular, and finding out what the deal is with him.

Finally; the action in this episode was great, and the May vs “May” fight at the end was perfectly summed up by Coulson's sort-of-nearly-fourth-wall-breaking “I can't believe I'm the only one seeing this” line.

Final Score: 8/10

This has been Blacksmith, writing for The Awesome Update.

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