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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – Pilot Review: How You Like Me Now?

When I heard they were making Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. into a television show, a spin of from The Avengers, I was excited to say the least. Just imagine Thor or Captain America stopping by. But then I read a little more into it and realized there was no way these big names would be featured on the show.  As disappointed as I was, Joss Whedon is involved in the project so I still had pretty high expectations going in. The show is a parallel in the Marvel Universe. It starts off where The Avengers left off. People are aware that there are “super heroes” who have powers.

After watching the pilot episode I’m a bit undecided about the show. As expected it's full of action, fight scenes, explosions, and cool technology. Overall it is genuinely entertaining to watch. There is a lot of explanation and setting up, but it is a pilot after all.  However, even with all that explaining (an hour's worth), I’m still a bit confused. Maybe I should have re-watched The Avengers before watching Agents of  S.H.I.E.L.D.

The episode starts out with action in the form of a huge explosion. We meet Mike who jumps into the action and we learn he has super powers. Meanwhile, in France, we meet Agent Grant Ward (Brett Dalton) who is on a mission. Again there is a fight scene. (This seems to be a pattern on the show and I’m okay with it). Then we see Ward talking to Robin, I mean Agent Maria Hill (sorry, I'm watching HIMYM and got confused.) She explains a bit about the S.H.I.E.L.D. program, or should I say Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division. That’s a mouthful.

Another big development in the first few minutes is that we Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg), is alive! He died in The Avengers. There is some mystery surrounding his resurrection. So far, I’m digging the sub story and like the set up.

There is some great dialogue. Now I’m not sure if this is a coincidence (probably not, since it's Joss Whedon), during the episode Mike says, “This is an origin story,” He is talking about himself; however, the episode also functions that way. We see how these people are brought together to form “The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”

We are introduced to this world in which super heroes exist. There are other agencies and people, if you will, who have interest in super powers, whether it's in people who have them, or in creating them. S.H.I.E.L.D., a government agency, is supposed to be the “good” guys. They deal with anything out of the ordinary.

This is evident when we learn that Mike was part of an experiment  (Project Centipede) that gave him super powers. We meet the “evil” doctor who is working for some larger entity, setting up the major “bad guy.” There is also a great scene at the end of the episode where Mike gives a speech which basically decribes how he feels I this “new world” riddled with heroes and gods. This demonstrates how the world these people live in has changed since the battle of New York.

We also meet the gang. There is the resurrected Phil Coulson, who is at the head of the group. New recruit Grant Ward seems to be a bit of a hot shot, but I like him. We also meet engineer Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) and biochemist Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge). Both are British and bring a bit of comic relief to the show. There is also the pilot Malinda May (Ming-Ma Wen). And then there is Skye, a hacker, who by the end of the episode is now working as part of the team.

There is some good set-up going on. However, I find it all a little hokey. Am I entertained? For the most part.  Am I’m I pumped for next weeks episode? Not really. Don't get me wrong, I'm intrigued. The creators of the show have a lot to work with and the show has a lot of potential. It really just depends what direction the show's writers choose. There is some great set up happening; I just hope the pay off is going to be worth it.


Coolest technology:  When they are investigating the burned building and Leo Fitz pulls out those flying room analyzers. Those are pretty sweet.

Best Fight/Action Scene: There we a lot to choose from, but this award goes to the opening scene where the building explodes and Mike jumps right into the action. I’m a sucker for a good explosion.

-- How will each episode function? Will they be self-contained for the most part or leave us with cliff hangers between episode?

-- What sorts of supers and super powers will we be featured on the show?




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