MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – “BOOM”

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Review: The Framework Is No San Junipero

If you haven’t seen Black Mirror‘s “San Junipero,” the reference is totally lost on you. I had a feeling Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was going for that digital world where physical death’s irrelevant. By the way, I highly recommend checking out San Junipero on Netflix… It’s an exceptional hour of television!

Black Mirror is an insane series, yet San Junipero had an overall happy ending. Knowing the Darkhold’s key to the creation of The Framework can only mean there’s no happy ending coming. Poor Agnes was so desperate to live, she made a really terrible choice. What will become of her consciousness if/when The Framework is inevitably shut down? I enjoyed seeing a different side to Mallory Jansen’s character this week. Agnes was quite different from Aida. It’s like on Orphan Black, when you forget the same actress is playing several roles.

MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – “BOOM”
Courtesy of ABC

Early on in the series’ run, the episodes felt much more global. I realize that low ratings and a tighter budget probably forced the producers to tone that down. However, it was lovely that the events kicked off in Spain, because it reminded me how much I enjoyed that international aspect of the show.

Though I wasn’t crazy about last week’s Koenig-centric hour, “Boom” was a much stronger Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode. I say this all the time, but it’s a shame the writers have to give us a weak installment so we can appreciate a solid one like this. I wasn’t clear what Anges and Radcliffe’s “working” relationship was. I’m assuming she was his patient due to the tumor, right? However, we learned pretty quickly she had no knowledge of her doppelgänger. How creepy would it be to look at a tablet and see your face staring back at you. Eeeek!

The installment had several storylines going, yet to hear Coulson say that May meant everything to him was massive… Wasn’t it? Is he just desperate to locate her or have his feeling become clear? When the two are reunited, how will the real Melinda May respond to this change in her old pal? Are they going to be an honest-to-goodness couple like Fitz-Simmons?

MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – “BOOM”
Courtesy of ABC

Anton Ivanov and Terrence Shockley have been some of the more interesting characters introduced this season. They’ve given the Watchdogs a face and purpose. When Ivanov told Radcliffe he’d “glanced” at the Darkhold, I immediately wondered if he had been infected by it. The man is after Coulson, so perhaps the book has now given him a supernatural edge. Is it possible The Superior will out Coulson, ultimately leading to a reunion with the Avengers in Infinity War? I’ve got to admit, I’d love to see Phil Coulson up on the big screen again.

A character that rubbed me the wrong way since her introduction was Senator Nadeer. When Shockley mentioned the fact she and her Inhuman brother shared the same blood, I hoped she wouldn’t find herself in a husk. The twist that Shockley (John Pyper-Ferguson) was the one to go through Terrigenesis was unpredictable. At least I didn’t see it coming. Nor did I imagine he would blow up, taking Nadeer and her cronies out. It pays not to watch ABC’s spoilerish promos. I felt the same as Daisy when she said, “We can’t be too sad.” The character lingered a bit too long if you ask me. How did Shockley explode only to return shortly after? I mean, the dude blew up… right? He was a goner.

MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – “BOOM”
Courtesy of ABC

That question was answered later, when our latest Inhuman was locked in S.H.I.E.L.D’s pod and jettisoned from the plane. Good thing Fitz-Simmons put two and two together in the nick of time. The visual effects of Shockley’s body rebuilding itself were kick-ass. I was really glad to see the creators show us how the “suicide bomber that gets to walk away” worked. Daisy forcing him to explode over and over until Fitz-Simmons could trap him while in his gaseous state was awesome as well. With Shockley now in custody, an Inhuman and knowing The Superior turned his back on him, I wonder if he might become an ally to S.H.I.E.L.D.? I keep waiting for Daisy to put together a truly powerful Inhuman team.

To touch briefly on Mace, the fact using the Patriot Serum was like playing Russian roulette didn’t surprise me. If it were that easy to create another Captain America, there would be armies of super soldiers all over the world by now. Still, knowing it could be potentially lethal, Mace took a hit in order to stop The Superior. The guy is hero, no matter how you slice it or dice it. Of course, now that’s he’s been captured it will fall to Coulson and the team to rescue the Director. That’s what Episode 414 “The Man Behind the Shield” is all about.

Closing Thoughts…

I liked this episode. There were several twists I didn’t see coming, which keeps things interesting. The fact consciousness can live forever in The Framework is a fun concept, which raises all kinds of ethical questions about the nature of life and death. Sadly, a computer can be shut down and drives erased… what does that tell you about “forever?” Clark Gregg is such an underappreciated actor. The scene where he states his case and comes clean with Agnes about May was brilliant. The woman would not have a heart had she not gone along with the plan, which made her death all the more sad. Will The Superior exchange Mace for Coulson? We’ll just have to tune in next week to find out.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on ABC.