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In this week's episode of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., "0-8-4," we are still trying to get to know the main characters (it is episode two, after all). Apparently the characters are also trying to get to know each other, as demonstrated by the plot device in the episode. At the start they are bickering and personalities are clashing, but they must work together in order to save Agent Coulson and each other. How very original, but it is a great way for us to get to know the characters. As per the first episode, this one is full of action and fight scenes along with cool technology.
The episodes starts off with a wall of plane breaking off, and then the words “19 hours earlier” appear on the screen. Honestly, I don’t see the need to do this. The start of episode would intrigue us anyway. Skye is now a part of the crew, but Agent Ward is unhappy with this new development. The action starts when there is an 0-8-4 in Peru. That stands for an unidentified object (the last one was a hammer). Enough with the Avengers references! We get it! Anyway, the agents set out to investigate but run into some problems along the way, and when their plane gets taken over by Peruvian soldiers, it is up to the bickering agents to get themselves out of this pickle. As contrived as this plot is, I dig the episode because it's full of action and we learn a lot about all of the characters. Lets start with Agent Grant Ward (Brett Dalton). He has great combat skills but he doesn’t work well with others. In "0-8-4," he needs to overcome his ego. There is a great scene where he is arguing with Fitz and Simmons in the laboratory aboard the plane. He also has a heart-to-heart with Skye, in which he explains he was trained to work solo. He does overcome his past training and he learns to work with the group and gains a new appreciation for everyone’s unique talents and skills. He even says at the end of the episode that Skye might make a good agent some day.
Then there are my favorite characters: Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) and Jemma Simons (Elizabeth Henstridge). They are just so funny and always bring that comedic aspect to the show. We also learn they have never seen combat before.
Agent Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen) turns out to be an absolute bad ass. Her old nickname was “The Cavalry.” She busts out some major moves on the bad guys. However, she does seem to have a sordid past since she doesn't want to see combat anymore (I’m intrigued) and is absolutely pissed off when she has to (illustrated by her giving Coulson the silent treatment). Ming-Na Wen plays the part perfectly. By the end of the episode she has embraced her excellent combat skills and uses them to her advantage.
Caulson also has a past and it's very hot. We meet Camilla, head of the Peruvian army. Apparently she and Caulson used to be an item back in the day when he was stationed in Peru. He also shows his faith in his team. He trusts they will get out of what ever bind they are in and save the day. What do you know? They do!
Throughout the episode, Skye is struggling to find her place. She feels a bit useless and can sense that Ward has a problem with her being there. However, she ends up saving the day with her “life raft” idea. So things seem to be going pretty well for her by the end up the episode and her story is wrapping up nicely. That is, until she gets a text message and we see she is still loyal to Rising Tide. I have a feeling that this will come up in a later episode and she will need to make a choice. I like the introduction of this twist, though, because it makes her character more interesting.All in all this is a good episode and fun to watch. Fun being the key word, I never feel that any of the characters are in any real danger. Yeah, I know they fight bad guys but I never dbout that the good guys will win (it’s the nature of the show). Yes, it is full of action, but there are just way to many Avengers references. You don’t need to bring it up all the time. I’m also super interested in Agent May’s past. I would love to learn about how she got her nickname. I’m also excited to see how the Skye double agent storyline plays out. I’m interested and excited for next weeks episode. Oh, and the cameo by Samuel L. Jackson at the end of the episode is just the icing on the cake!
Coolest technology: When they are fighting the rebels at the Inca temple Ward busts out this pretty sweet long and silver gadget. He plunges it into the ground and it releases a blue force field that knocks everyone down. It is pretty sweet.
Best Fight/Action Scene: The plane fight scene when the side of the plane falls out. All the wind and camera angles are really thrilling to watch.
-- What’s going on with this double agent business?
-- Agents May’s past is so intriguing.
-- Anyone else feel like they are watching a Firefly episode when the gang is sitting on the loading dock of the plane?
-- Will Samuel L. Jackson be in more episodes? (I hope so!)
-- When will they stop with all the Avengers referances?