TV Corner: Agents of SHIELD

[Content Note: Discussions of violence. Spoilers for the most recent episode of Agents of SHIELD.]

image of Skye (Chloe Bennet) in the latest episode of Agents of SHIELD; she is wearing a pink dress and holding a small purse, and cocking her head to one side with an expression that seems to say, 'Oh, honey. Don't underestimate me.'
Underestimating this woman would be foolish, sir.

In last night's episode, the Agents of SHIELD team was tasked with being All In. Do you think they succeeded?! Let's find out!

A big truck carrying office supplies and driven by a dude named Mack (Mack the truck driver? seriously?!) is ambushed by an invisible force, lifting the truck off the ground and then crashing it. A bunch of armed shady characters rush in and steal the truck's contents—which, as it turns out, are not office supplies at all, but an Agents of SHIELD asset named Dr. Franklin Hall, who is a super duper scientist guy. How did the kidnappers know the secret route?! Is there a mole at SHIELD?!

Meanwhile, Chiseled White Hero trains new recruit Skye in self-defense, and she's pretty unenthusiastic about it. Which we know is partly because she hasn't fully committed herself to SHIELD yet. CWH suspects as much, and tells her that every agent has a defining moment, when they realize they're committed to the cause, but he won't tell her what his is, because that's how television storytelling works.

The team is assembled to be told of Dr. Hall's kidnapping, and they investigate the scene where a tiny gyroscope is discovered and revealed to be a device that controls gravity. Something something cowboy who sold the kidnappers their equipment. Something something businessman named Quinn. (Every show I watch has a Quinn in it!) Something something gravitonium. Something something Quinn's in Malta because they have great tax rates and an aversion to compliance with international law.

This puts the Agents of SHIELD in a real bind, because they are definitely required to comply with international law. (Sure. You know how the US government totally requires its secret ops to comply with international law.) Luckily, Skye isn't officially an agent yet, so she can infiltrate Quinn's compound. Clever girl! She hacks herself an e-vite to a party he's having, at which he will announce all his evil machinations to his stockholders.

"Nothing yields a better return on your investment than a gravity-manipulation device, so, if you can ever get in on one of those dealies, go for it!"—Warren Buffett.

At some point in the middle of all this, CWH reveals his defining moment to Skye. He had a brother, with presumably an even more chiseled jaw, who mercilessly bullied him. That's why he had to learn how to protect himself. And that's why he's committed to the cause. "Now get in there and distract that evil businessman with your boobies, then beat him with your wits, and also do some sharp moves that prove my training worked!" he says. Or something.

Which is exactly what happens! Sort of. Skye cleverly tells Quinn that she's been working with SHIELD, and, if we were silly people, we might imagine that she's decided to work against SHIELD after all, but we are not silly people, so we see this as the luring trickery it is soon revealed to be. Something something disabled security lasers. The team is in!

Skye and Quinn have a confrontation, during which she has her defining moment and declares that she realizes SHIELD is Big Brother only in the sense that they're the big brother who protects a little brother, which is a cute throwback to CWH's defining moment. She is ALL IN! She steals Quinn's gun with her hot new fighting moves, and then jumps out the window into the pool to make her escape. There is witty banter during this scene, and I am very fond of Chloe Bennett's acting! She is soon surrounded by Quinn's henchmen, but CWH shows up just in time to save her. Phew.

Meanwhile, Coulson has located Dr. Hall, who reveals he is the one who leaked his position to Quinn, and for a moment we wonder if he has turned bad, but it's a DOUBLE-REVERSAL and Dr. Hall explains he wanted to get here so he could destroy the device before Quinn uses it to make the one-percent even more one-percentier, or whatever. But he will kill everyone in the whole area! That is a price he is willing to pay to change the course of history. Coulson is not on board with that plan. He just got back from Tahiti!

Fitz and Simmons tell Coulson to find a catalyst to stop the gravity device's chemical reaction in its core. Coulson shoots through glass on which Dr. Hall is standing and he falls into the gyroscope. "Well, he wanted to be a catalyst for change," says no one, to my disappointment.

Skye feels like SHIELD could be the family she never had, and she is committed. Melinda May decides that she'll return to combat again, and she is committed. And once again the day is saved! Hooray! The gyroscope is secured in a locked safe by SHIELD—and in the final moments, we see a hand reach out of its inky core. GRAVITRON!!! The end.

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