Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returned this week with a bang named the latest comic incarnation of the Ghost Rider, Robbie Reyes but the big question is – Should YOU be (or start) Watching Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? Well let me ramble my review / rant about the premiere and perhaps you’ll be interested (or not).
Last Season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Summary
Okay. A summary of the dreadfully boring last season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – Hydra bows knee to the alien known as Hive who created Hydra on Earth (for reasons NEVER properly clarified, who cares, it’s stupid anyways so that’s likely why). Hive returns from the Marvel TV universe planet X in the form of Grant Ward. Hive then took a whole season to infect people and take forever to do whatever stupid world conquering plans it had for the “peace” for all Inhuman kind. Yeah. Sure. Whatever. I dropped interest once Hive Ward killed Gideon Malick, a better character & actor to be running Hydra. So the “electro” Inhuman (no, I’m not looking up his name, who cares) sacrifices himself to kill Hive up in orbit of their Earth. Fast forward and Coulson is no longer the boss and hunting down Daisy, who’s gone rouge ala X-Men mutant style of helping others / vigilante.
Right. Now. What’s happened in the premiere?
Well… S.H.I.E.L.D. is back but the team is broken up. Agent Fitz (Iain de Caestecker) is running the Tech Ops. Agent May (Ming-Na Wen) is training / running a S.H.I.E.L.D. mission ops team, Agent Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) is the right hand of the new S.H.I.E.L.D. Director (Jason O’Mara), Agents Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) & Mack (Henry Simmons) are flying around in a bigger Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. new jet ‘The Ghost’ and hunting down other Inhumans / missions (it’s NOT clear but who cares – they’re working for S.H.I.E.L.D.). Lastly Daisy Johnson / Skye / Quake (Chloe Bennet) is still running solo but in VERY similar Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. gear because REASONS. Okay. That’s the team. They’re broken up by the new Director who likely doesn’t trust any of them in building a new S.H.I.E.L.D. that’s working directly with the UN under the Sokovia Accords of Captain America: Civil War (something that is name dropped a DOZEN times through-out the episode – a big DOWNSIDE!). They have new rules and regulations with colours not levels as before. Reasons.
Ghost Rider & Life-Model Decoys
Next up. Ghost Rider is introduced rather quickly and makes a massive impression. Daisy gets a peek at him and all of this sets of red flags for S.H.I.E.L.D., specifically Coulson & Mack. May gives the two a heads up and they chasing Daisy who’s looking for Ghost Rider. Meanwhile the sub plot is that Dr. Radcliffe (former science baddie from last season played by the wonderful John Hannah) has almost perfected his new tech for S.H.I.E.L.D. – the Life-Model Decoy named Aida. Radcliffe shows Aida to Fitz who decides that they need to keep working on the project but secretly else they’ll both be in trouble, mainly Radcliffe, but Fitz sees the potential in the Life-Model Decoys. All this strikes close to home as per Avengers Age of Ultron which it’s likely meant to.
The story has Daisy / Quake find and take on the new Ghost Rider while Coulson and Mack stumble across a illegal transaction between some baddies over a new mystical box & some evil spirits that seem to infect others (HERE WE GO AGAIN WITH F**KNING INFECTION PLOT! PLEASE TRY ANYTHING ELSE WRITERS!!) who seem to freak out and kill each other due to this. Gah. Anyways, this is likely their ONLY tie to Doctor Strange movie coming in a few months. Anyways the fight with Quake & Ghost Rider is actually decent & it seems that the new Ghost Rider thinks Quake is infected / demon ala the plot tie. Sadly the episode ends with May being infected by this new evil spirit box. *sigh*
Overall this was a solid episode (if you can stomach Daisy / Quake as a near perfect vigilante). The fun interactions between Fitz & the team make for fun moments. I like the Coulson & Mack combo but there are some holes. Why are Coulson & Mack the ONLY ones on the new Ghost ship that are field agents? How many Quin Jets do they have and how fast do they move? (May reaching Coulson & Mack in minutes of being dispatched). Is Fitz the new M for all of S.H.I.E.L.D. now? No longer a field agent? Can Daisy / Quake just go away? Can Yo-Yo replace her? Can May have ANYONE else to act with vs her own team of red shirts? When are Hunter & Mockingbird returning to save the day and bring the team together? Oh all the questions & fun.
Okay. Why should I start watching this? Simple. Ghost Rider kicks the doors off & is exactly the type of high stakes the show needed. The sub plot of Radcliffe, Fitz, Aida and Life-Model Decoys is likely setting the stones for the 2nd half of the season’s main plot. The new S.H.I.E.L.D. setup is interesting once they stop name dropping the Sokovia Accords. I’d like to see more new S.H.I.E.L.D. supporting characters stick around & be useful. Coulson and Mack make a good team and it’s obvious that Coulson is better as a top agent vs director / boss. Lastly, Ghost Rider again just f**king rocks!
Why you shouldn’t be watching / why I cringe when I watch: Daisy / Skye / Quake is still as annoying as before. She knows everything, she’s always right, always figures things out (like finding Ghost Rider is no time and his family ties). She’s written like she’s the best hero in their TV / movie universe to the point. Hey, I LOVE a strong female character(s) but they need some major flaws and her flaws are occasionally when she uses her super powers, her arms get sore and suggested that she’ll kill herself but with NO real damage to herself. Gah. The character is TOO perfect and has gotten boring 2 seasons ago. That said, if you can grin and bear it like I try to do – I’m hoping that there’s MORE to this show then her. Like the REST of the team! Also the name dropping the Sokovia Accords every few minutes is like nails on a chalk board.
So what did you think of the season 4 premiere?
Check out Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. next week with ‘Meet the New Boss’ Tuesday, September 27 on ABC.