S2 Midseason Finale

Tonight, Marvel’s Agent Carter premieres on ABC, so we thought now would be a great time to get up to speed with all of our previously-missed episodes of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Last season was a bit of a roller coaster for the TV series set within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Although there were growing pains for the first-year program, we found it pretty bland (and almost swore it off) until Hydra came a knocking. That’s when things really started getting interesting.

With S.H.I.E.L.D. officially a mess, Season 2 opens with promises of double agents galore. Phil Coulson has been privately dealing with alien-related ADD symptoms and Skye has been a mess, trying to balance her newfound professional life as an agent while trying to uncover her family tree, leaf by leaf via Ancestory.com. Ward is held a prisoner by his former field-agent friends, before he predictably escapes them. Fitz has been suffering from brain damage and attachment issues and Simmons went undercover as a Hydra agent, before blowing her cover as a terrible liar. We were introduced to a few new agents, although up to this point, they haven’t had much time to shine in the spotlight.

That leads us to the last handful of missed episodes, culminating with the Midseason Finale of Season 2.

The Writing on the Wall:
Senator Ward is covering for his brother, who escaped during a prisoner transfer. Photos from a dead S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent unravel the mysterious picture Director Coulson has been continuously carving. There’s a killer running free, who also was a patient of the T.A.H.I.T.I. project. Coulson has lost his memories and needs to be tortured to regain them. Thirty minutes of exposition culminate with the revelation of the blueprints to an alien city. Now that Coulson and crew have completed the puzzle, the compulsion to carve is gone.

The Things We Bury:
The Obelisk gets a little backstory told within flashbacks. Nazi scientist Werner Reinhardt (aka Daniel Whitehall), seems to be the main antagonist of this series. Apparently he wants to use the Obelisk (aka the Diviner) as a weapon of mass destruction. Agent Carter makes an appearance, Ward kidnaps his brother and Fitz must learn to build a transceiver with one arm tied behind his back (literally). This has to be the best episode so far!

… Ye Who Enter Here:
Thankfully, Raina returns. This time, she’s being chased by Whitehall’s thugs before S.H.I.E.L.D. agents catch up with her. The team splits up: half are sent to Puerto Rico to destroy the ancient alien temple, while the rest are dispatched to extract Raina. Both run into major problems. Raina attempts to bond with Skye, detailing her version of the Kree’s history, foreshadowing that she, too, is destined to have special powers. Agent 33 returns with a freaky-looking nanomask, Mac’s possessed by an alien and Skye is taken hostage.

What They Become:
Skye meets her father for the very first time and receives a new backstory. Apparently, her real name is Daisy Johnson, by the way. Skye’s mother had the gift of never aging, so Whitehall killed her and rejuvenated himself. The father-daughter family reunion doesn’t last very long. Coulson arrives and kills Whitehall before Skye’s dad, Calvin Zabo (aka Mister Hyde), gets his revenge. Agent 33 escapes with Ward and the Obelisk transforms Skye, er, Daisy and Raina into members of The Inhumans, while killing Trip.

To be continued… on March 3rd!

So far, there have been some great characters making special appearances within the series, including Nick Fury, Maria Hill, Lady Sif, Agent Carter and The Howling Commandos, among others. While the TV show is still trying to stand on its own two feet in this, the second season, we don’t think there have been enough cross-over characters from the Marvel Cinematic Universe making appearances. Out of all the characters in the Marvel Universe, surely there’s more who can make guest appearances to help with the battle against Hydra. With that being said, who’s next?

Alphonso ‘Mac’ Mackenzie has steadily become our favorite character. He’s understated and never over the top (both as a character and as the actor, Henry Simmons, who portrays him). Once in a while, he has some great one-liners, as well. He’s also seen onscreen playing Halo 4 with Fitz, in order to coordinate their reaction time for battle. This one is a winner. With some luck, he’ll be featured a bit more and won’t get killed off anytime soon.

Although this season is still classified as happening within Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, don’t expect anything big to happen in this TV series until Season 3, leading up to a new round of Marvel feature films. We were totally surprised Whitehall was killed off as soon as he received a decent backstory. That was a bummer and feels like such a wasted opportunity. He seethed evil. But in the comics, and possibly this TV show, nobody stays dead for long…

Looking ahead, we want to know more about Raina (especially now that she has superhuman powers). Having not read the comic series before watching the TV show, we’re often lurking on Wikipedia, trying to decipher all the events of the past episode and arguing among ourselves about what will be happening next.

We really can’t wait to see what kind of trouble Agent Carter gets herself into tonight!

Strength: Finally, a few major questions get answered…
Weakness: Along with the unfortunate deaths of some major characters.
WTF Moment: Without any real details on the Inhuman revelation, the midseason finale felt unfulfilled.

Notable Quotes:
– “Like Zombie ants?”
– “Change is terrifying.”
– “Bad guys love their WMDs.”
– “Standing by with Geek Squad.”
– “Dum Dum Dugan would be proud.”
– “Sounds a little Harry Potter to me…”
– “Discovery requires experimentation.”
– “I like my bosses unjumbled, at all times.”
– “Sorry, but you’re going to need a lanyard.”
– “Just grab a seat and lock in. It’s gonna get bumpy.”
– “I would have agreed with you before ‘alien’ became a word we used daily.”
– “Stealing bodies, talking about aliens and bringing the dead back to life. What kind of creature feature did I sign up for?”

Review: 3/5