Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Review - Episode 22: Beginning of the End

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Review - Episode 22: Beginning of the End

The agents face their first season finale. So what type of cliffhanger did we get to lead us into Season 2?

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Nice review, thanks Bob! Looking forward to teasers for Season 2, and its inevitable tie-in with Avengers 2 next May.

I was honestly a little disappointed with the first fight scene in the Peruvian base... May just casually disarms the guy with the Berserker Staff and goes on a rampage? A bit weak.. still kind of cool, but weak. There were so many conveniences in the show that made me roll my eyes like that. Fury showing up just in time, twice. The 'incentive packages' happening to be in the same location as everything else.. way to put all your eggs in one basket guys. Still, I think it was a good send off for the season, and I loved Garrett's final scene.

I think the case for Skye and maybe Raina to be Inhumans grows stronger. And the blue alien guy being a Kree. Someone brought up last week that the insanity part of the GH drug might be because of linking somewhat to the Kree Supreme Intelligence. We know for sure Kree are in the MCU, unless they seriously change Ronan the Accuser's background. Getting linked into a superior telepathic intellect could certainly explain going crazy and feeling an impulse to carve out crazy scientific calculations into whatever surface happens to be near by. It also fits in with the Inhuman angle, since were a Kree science experiment. And finally, the end scene... We know Skye was recovered from a small village in China, and the bodyguard at the end looked like he might have been Chinese. Attilan was located in the Himalayas at some points so... The math makes sense.

I'm also on board with the Koenig brothers being LMDs. It would explain why they use the same speech, word for word. And how they can live in some remote secret base with no other human contact outside the internet for apparently months (years?) at a time without going nuts. It also makes me wonder how many other secret bases and Koenigs there are out there...

I'm glad you enjoyed it Bob, and I'm glad people are starting to agree that (ironically) since the fall of SHIELD, the show has improved a lot. I'll be looking forward to next season.

Mr. Chipman, if you'll allow me a bit of presumption, I believe I can explain how good Bill Paxton is as a lunatic:

"Watch his performance in Frailty, and take out all the stuff where he's a good dad."

"I just hope this means Oswalt is a series regular now."

If he shows up for more than a few minutes in the 2nd episode of season 2 I'm dropping this show.

I've never seen him in anything but this but he's already too annoying for me to deal with, let alone as a regular!

Also the doctor guy on the floor when Garrett gets deathlok'd was he always there? or was he a good guy Garrett killed when he regenerated because if he was cold agent Coulson very cold leaving him dead on the floor like that.

Also I can't see ABC being happy that with nearly every renewed shows season final seeing ratings high's AoS is flat with the worst rated/viewed episodes.

Wait... am I the only person who thought Skye's dad was relaxing for an afternoon bath... in blood?

I swear it looked more blood red than "black" to me.

Ward survived. Ah well, I guess Season Two will need its late-season Garrett-type nemesis and I'm sure he's still under contract. A few observations:

-No mention of Abomination. It seemed like they were setting something up between Garrett and Abomo, but with Garrett dead and the assumption that Garrett was H.Y.D.R.A. out of convenience it seems like a dropped plot or possibly a "you can't afford to render 3 seconds of Abomination just being in the room, nevermind him flipping the Bus." Though it's a good enough way to explain how Abomination is out if they decide to have Von Strucker have a Masters of Evil team in Avengers two.

-The writing. Could be alien, could be a circuit diagram. I was kinda hoping for a tie-in to Guardians of the Galaxy, maybe that's it?

-The sad hulk music started playing in my head when Deathlok walked away. I know I'm not alone.

-Garrett getting Buffy vs. Dracula'd was amusing but a little out of place considering Garrett would have been a great candidate for getting tortured for info. Speaking of...

-Where were they taking Ward? SHIELD doesn't really have prisons anymore.

-I think they filmed a lot that was cut from the Coulson/Fury conversation so that they can sprinkle it in dribs and drabs into season 2, it seemed like we were coming in at the end of a long talk.

-I'm thinking the Agent Carter stuff is going to be an intro to Von Strucker and world building for Avengers 2 more than anything else. Hopefully Triplett's grandpa will be on the cast.

That was underwhelming. One thing I liked about this show is that they didn't put up cliffhangers for another episode (as in "wait for the big reveal"), much less another season, and twists were interesting. Now they can afford to just drag on.

Why did Fury resurrect Coulson? Because he can count the number of people he can trust on one hand, and isn't afraid to cut fingers off. But that doesn't mean he won't move heaven and earth if some jumped-up wannabe-god cuts one off without his say-so.

I spit-take-d when I saw Koenig. But then when he said "brother" and stated almost word for word the same phrases about lanyards, yeah, that screamed LMD.

I was surprised, but wasn't incredulous when Fury showed up at Cybertek. Fitz/Simmons got the tracker on the plane, and this is Fury. He has a habit of showing up where you least expect him (see the fact that he was actually listening to the SHIELD emergency beacon). Especially with that line at the end "Nowhere? You know me better than that, I'll be EVERYWHERE."

I laughed when Garrett got vaped. He was violating evil overlord rule #20.

"Despite its proven stress-relieving effect, I will not indulge in maniacal laughter. When so occupied, it's too easy to miss unexpected developments that a more attentive individual could adjust to accordingly."

http://www.eviloverlord.com/lists/overlord.html

WarpedLord:
Wait... am I the only person who thought Skye's dad was relaxing for an afternoon bath... in blood?

I swear it looked more blood red than "black" to me.

Same here, I thought he was a follower of Khorne for a second there.

For me, the funniest part of the finale was Garrett's very brief rebirth before

That and Coulson and Fury just looking at Garrett and going "This guy's a total moron..." as to the old clichÚ of "You're a madman Garrett!".

I'm pretty much in the same boat with Bob for the finale here, I'm happy with it.

"charges up and beats everyone down so badly she ultimately brings the whole building down on them." ... And then throws the super weapon away for no good reason...

"scribbling "some ideas" onto a pane of glass." <= Pretty sure he asks for "a nail" and then scratches it in the bulletproof glass

"Fitz has activated an old S.H.I.E.L.D. distress signal" <= made me think Fury would come get them in a sub.

"andámaybeáswim to the surface" <= As a scuba diver I can tell you it's super easy from that depth. The air you breathe is enough to fill your lungs four times at surface level. So you MUST breathe out the entire way up, or your lungs burst. They actually don't do that when we see them rising, so they died. And there is NO way Fitz can go braindead in the short time it takes to get to the surface, even with no air in his lungs.

"Solid action scene" <= Actually, the part where the missile blows away the 4 Centipides is really badly timed/composited!!!

"ripping out a guy's rib and stabbing him to death with it" <= No super power needed to do that. I thought it was his spinal column, which can't be used for stabbing, but at least demonstrates inhuman strenght

"(the gag: He actually misheard it)" <= The way I heard this scene, it's clearly just a taunt from Fury. Because the phrase is along the lines "Being A PART of something bigger". And the bad guy just wants to eat the whole pie for himself...

"while Skye makes middle manager guy show her what The Incentives Program is" <= They already knew what it was from the start, she just needs to find the kid.

"right before Coulson casually blasts him to atoms" <= this really made it from "shit ending" to "Hell yeah!"

"misshapen and dripping with an oily black slime" <= Really? Huh! I thought it was supposed to be falling apart and all "gory" as far as TV can get.

"but it looks a lot more like a map or schematic than words or numbers" <= The first thing in my mind was a huge sigh: Guardians of the Galaxy reference star-map... Roll eyes time!

Overall I too enjoyed the episode a LOT, despite the tons of nitpicks to make about the details.

CAPTCHA: "Send packing". Hell no, Captcha! :@

"Well, this seems familiar."

"You were never on top."

I lol'ed and my wife actually said "Ha! Suck it."

I'm pretty much with Bob here. The season finale answered very little, and actually made more questions, but I really didn't care about any of that while watching. And I think it sets up a good place to start for Season 2.

Kenjitsuka:

"andámaybeáswim to the surface" <= As a scuba diver I can tell you it's super easy from that depth. The air you breathe is enough to fill your lungs four times at surface level. So you MUST breathe out the entire way up, or your lungs burst. They actually don't do that when we see them rising, so they died. And there is NO way Fitz can go braindead in the short time it takes to get to the surface, even with no air in his lungs.

Yeahhh I was kinda thinking the same thing. I've got a feeling they were supposed to have been floating there for a little while before Fury finds them, but that's a bit of a stretch.

"Compartents are made to be compatible with all S.H.I.E.L.D. aircraft, submarines and spacecraft".

How is no one talking about this one line and its implications? First we're told that S.H.I.E.L.D. had at least one submarine, which begs the question just how big was S.H.I.E.L.D. before it collapsed? I mean I know I've brought up the fact that the Helicarrier from The Avengers up and disappeared without a trace and it didn't seem to phase anyone (until noted otherwise I'm doing with "Department H grabbed it when the organization fell apart"), but it also means that S.W.O.R.D. isn't just part of, a breakaway organization of, or subsidiary organization of S.H.I.E.L.D., but is has SPACESHIPS! Knowing Whedon (who created S.W.O.R.D. in a comic he wrote) does this mean we're going to see them in Guardians of the Galaxy and/or Avengers 3? I sure hope so.

Also Bob, we know the Blue Alien is a Kree Pureblood, they didn't sat it on screen but one of the actors let it slip.

On a side note: me and my friends laughed so hard after Garrets' death we didn't even know what Coulson said.

Been waiting for this all day. I liked the finale. I knew Nick would be there but I didn't realize how long he was sticking around or that he would actually help save the day. I kind of thought he'd pop in for a revelatory scene or show up and say something that might set the stage for season 2. Not save Fitz/Simmons, save Coulson, and then proceed to exchange witty banter with Coulson. Still now that Coulson is the Director of S.H.E.I.L.D. they can't keep him off the big screen for much longer. We'll more than likely have to wait until phase 3 but I bet he'll show up Captain America 3 being that Cap has the closest ties to S.H.E.I.L.D. out of all the Avengers and he is the resident Cap fanboy. When he does make it back to the big screen I really do hope he brings the crew with him in some capacity. I've grown to like the whole lot of them. Even Skye even if she is a Mary Sue to some degree. I mean come on let there be mind control in the movie if they all show up in a Marvel movie. The world needs to see Black Widow vs. The Calvary.

Incidentally if that is an original thing from the show and not the comics Melinda May should be put in the comics and her super hero identity should be The Calvary.

Ward: May! May! May! Why am I running around in circles?
May: Shut up Ward. Or, I'll nail your other foot to the floor.

OT: Very much agreed. The finale could have been more, but at least it was enjoyable. Here's to see (most of) the gang in season 2.

Bob, I know the show acknowledged that Skye was a bit of a Sue (Mary Sue Poots. Har har har.), but to me, it's just not enough. I just feel like this show keeps dragging me along with the mystery when half the time it kept telling me how awesome Skye was. I know you said Phil might be a bit of a Sue, but I can actually see it: admist all the agency conspiracy and cover-up, he comes out with a sense of honor and integrity. Half the show, we spend so much time speculating Skye's origins and to only have more mysteries after mysteries, I'm just sort of exhausted.

Also, why is it such a big deal for Patton Oswalt to be around? I like him too, don't get me wrong, but it's less likely that Marvel contracted him and more likely someone said, "Hey, Patton Oswalt's probably at the next lot down doing narration for the Goldbergs, go see if he's interested.)

Other than that, I enjoyed the ride. I liked that Ward stayed evil and was sad to see Fitz go, and really wished that Simmons had kissed him on the mouth, but other than that, I was satisfied.

A couple of semi random thoughts. I liked this episode. In fact I enjoyed it, in spite of the flaws. And I think they gave away a few minor things for the future.

1. Coulson and Fury's argument over his Ressurection."that was supposed to be used to Ressurect an Avenger" "Yes". In one simple exchange Fury just told Coulson that he was as much an Avenger as Black Widow, Hawkeye etc. he was a fallen Avenger who was resurrected. It will be interesting to see if this shows back up in Age of Ultron.

2. Skye's father - while I still think he and she are Inhumans, there was something else going on there. In China a heavily tattooed Cihese brute is guarding him. He appears to an elderly man with long white hair pulled back in a classical Asian style with his hands and forearms wrapped in cloth, possibly bloody bandages. Now let's look at this from the opposite view. This is a SHIELD show. We have spent the past season mainly building up to Hydra and involved with their independent technology spin off Centipede, which is essentially AIM by another name. So Hydra and an AIM equivalent? What are the other big SHIELD related foes? The name Yellow Claw comes to mind. And SHIELD and the Avengers getting dragged into conflict with him by protecting a runaway child or harem bride of his is a fairly recurrent theme.

3. Patton Oswalt is brilliant! The show runners just solved the LMD conundrum in one simple bit of comic throw away. LMD's are a common SHIELD thing from the comics, and Iron Man named them in the Avengers movie. But they really are too much of a cheesy cop out to use in the show or a movie. They are too obvious a get out of jail free card."he didn't die, it was his LMD". It is annoying in the comics and would be unbearable in this show. But in one fell swoop they just introduced them and made them a useless bit of comedy frippery. "Yeah, they're life model decoys. We tried to make synthetic Shield soldiers, but all we got out of it was Patton Oswalt. They are leftovers from Phineous Horton's old work. Never worth the cost. We use them as caretaker valets at the super secret safe houses. They can't do much else".

4. Raina - now she is more and more the big interesting mystery. I am almost wandering if they are developing her as a female take on the High Evolutionary?

5. Much as the Marvel Cinematic Universe (and the Ultimate Comic one) sort of ties back to Project Rebirth and the Super Soldier Serum, I think this show and where it goes from here will tie back to the Kree and connections both classic and re imagined, to them.

Zontar:
First we're told that S.H.I.E.L.D. had at least one submarine, which begs the question just how big was S.H.I.E.L.D. before it collapsed?

It was run by an international council and was at least big enough to build three Death Stars in Captain America: the Winter Soldier, not to mention having secret bases all over the place, building flying cars, and having the budget and infrastructure not only to regularly launch dangerous objects into the sun but also to actually just maintain the illusion of doing so while keeping that dangerous stuff for itself.

So the answer there is "pretty big."

Zontar:
"Compartents are made to be compatible with all S.H.I.E.L.D. aircraft, submarines and spacecraft".

How is no one talking about this one line and its implications? First we're told that S.H.I.E.L.D. had at least one submarine, which begs the question just how big was S.H.I.E.L.D. before it collapsed? I mean I know I've brought up the fact that the Helicarrier from The Avengers up and disappeared without a trace and it didn't seem to phase anyone (until noted otherwise I'm doing with "Department H grabbed it when the organization fell apart"), but it also means that S.W.O.R.D. isn't just part of, a breakaway organization of, or subsidiary organization of S.H.I.E.L.D., but is has SPACESHIPS! Knowing Whedon (who created S.W.O.R.D. in a comic he wrote) does this mean we're going to see them in Guardians of the Galaxy and/or Avengers 3? I sure hope so.

Also Bob, we know the Blue Alien is a Kree Pureblood, they didn't sat it on screen but one of the actors let it slip.

On a side note: me and my friends laughed so hard after Garrets' death we didn't even know what Coulson said.

One thing related to this that has been bouncing around the Internet. That TAHITI facility that Coulson was resurrected at? Remember how everyone has been confused that it wasn't a SHIELD base, nor did it seem to be Hydra. Well our Internet brethren went through freeze framing and studying that episode. And discovered the symbol that the guards wear and is on the computers is in fact SWORDs emblem. So that was a SWORD base.

And of course SWORD has spaceships. How else would they get to their space station? ;)

Yeah SWORD is going to show up at some point probably if GotG come to earth.

Great job on the season finale review, Bob. Hopefully, now that the show is coming back for season 2, you'll cover some of the things Marvel Studios needs to do to improve on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. As for what happened in the finale...

KazeAizen:
I mean come on let there be mind control in the movie if they all show up in a Marvel movie. The world needs to see Black Widow vs. The Calvary.

Incidentally if that is an original thing from the show and not the comics Melinda May should be put in the comics and her super hero identity should be The Calvary.

In the same boat as most it seems. Didn't blow your socks off but we got almost everything that we wanted (saved Ace, May destroying Ward, Garrett having a mental breakdown and dying, reasons for Tahiti) and nothing that we didn't want (redeeming Ward, Mary Sue Poots saving everyone with previously unseen powers). With the impetus left on Coulson to rebuild SHIELD from scratch we have the perfect way to gradually introduce new agents as remnants of the old guard that Phil trusts or comes to trust.

I just hope they don't play the 'special guest is awesome' card too much to get out of trouble now that they have two different extremely capable allies just wandering the world until they're needed. Though that would be a funny gag if one of them saved the day and the other showed up ready for war only to find everything already resolved...

I don't watch much TV so my quality standards are probably lower than most here, but count me in for season 2.

This felt really anticlimactic. It just seemed like the "Nick Fury saves the day!" episode. I know it's not really Deus Ex Machina since Fury was known to be alive, but it sure felt like it. Hardly anything was answered and instead, more questions were made. This is starting to feel like Lost except for I care about the characters a lot less.

I did like that they didn't try to do some quick redemption arc for Ward and Garret's final scene was brilliant. Fitz' and Simmon's scenes when they were at the bottom of the ocean were also well done. How they escaped was complete stupidity though.

WhiteFangofWar:

KazeAizen:
I mean come on let there be mind control in the movie if they all show up in a Marvel movie. The world needs to see Black Widow vs. The Calvary.

Incidentally if that is an original thing from the show and not the comics Melinda May should be put in the comics and her super hero identity should be The Calvary.

In the same boat as most it seems. Didn't blow your socks off but we got almost everything that we wanted (saved Ace, May destroying Ward, Garrett having a mental breakdown and dying, reasons for Tahiti) and nothing that we didn't want (redeeming Ward, Skye saving everyone with previously unseen powers). With the impetus left on Coulson to rebuild SHIELD from scratch we have the perfect way to gradually introduce new agents as remnants of the old guard that Phil trusts or comes to trust. I just hope they don't play the 'special guest' card too much to get out of trouble now that they have two different extremely capable allies just wandering the world until they're needed.

I don't watch much TV so my quality standards are probably lower than most here, but count me in for season 2.


Seriously I kind of don't want them to redeem Ward. My mom liked him but she's my mom. She found it very weird and not right when him and May started sleeping together while I was just like. "Cool. We really are in the 21st century." I'm with you on the special guest thing as well. I mean Jackson has pretty much said he'll play Nick Fury in whatever they need him to because he is into this stuff. The rest of the cast, while I like them, I do think that Tom is really the only other one fully embracing what he's a part of now. I'm sure the other guys like these roles but they aren't as attached as Sam, Tom, or Clark if you know what I mean.

I wouldn't mind guest appearances like mid season but to constantly use say Black Widow, Nick Fury, Hawkeye, or Steve Rogers as deus ex Machina would be bad. Besides out of the ones who could potentially guest star I suppose its a good thing that only Cap and Falcon are the ones that it would be harder to do because of their more special effects based stuff. The others it wouldn't be near as hard. Still this will be interesting. By my estimate season 2 should wrap up close to the debut of Avengers 2. Should be interesting to see what they do with that time.

nekoali:
It also makes me wonder how many other secret bases and Koenigs there are out there...

X + 1.

Fury always has X + 1 secret bases.

I really liked this finale. Had enough closure to be a good finale, but sets up nicely for the next season.

nekoali:
I was honestly a little disappointed with the first fight scene in the Peruvian base... May just casually disarms the guy with the Berserker Staff and goes on a rampage? A bit weak.. still kind of cool, but weak.

Personally I thought that part was brilliant. May is always talked about as being second only to Black Widow, and yet we haven't really seen her prove that yet. That fight right there though? That proved it. She one-shots a guy who has a super weapon, and then--just as someone with her skills should be able to do--goes to town on everyone else and it's not even a contest. I was actually disappointed in the fight with Ward because Ward did too well in that fight for all the skill May is supposed to have. Still, a great fight scene though.

This episode has restored my faith in the series. As Bob said, we didn't get a lot of our questions answered, but I don't care. I find the mystery aspect of the show much more entertaining. Coulson trying to find out what was going on with him was what kept me coming back when I was losing interest with everything else. Now we have new mysteries to follow that don't involve betrayal (hopefully). I feel this show does best when it's allowed to do its own ongoing thing but still keeps itself attached to the bigger picture. The HYDRA part, as well as the episode with Lady Sif, started choking the life out of the series for me because it felt like they were trying too hard to go, "Hey, look! We're part of the movies! See? We have people!"
Fury magically showing up in the middle of the fight was a little odd, and then whipping out that gun was a moment of, "Wait, where was he hiding that?" but as Bob said, it didn't matter. All of that was awesome. Ward is done, HYDRA betrayal is done, and the team has been rebuilt. I'm looking forward to seeing them begin to track down their new mysteries in season two.

Looking at the pattern that Coulson and Garrett kept drawing, if it's of parallel dimensions, each star might represent a Starbrand, which would be a ridiculous revelation with a possible second alien invasion coming for Avengers 3. That combined with Garrett seeing "the universe", could the blood be from Captain Universe? Scary thought. A bit more believable is the running theory that the body was of Kree origin and by being injected with the blood, the recipients now have a connection to the Supreme Intelligence, in which case the stars connected by lines, like a circuit board, may in fact be inhabited. In case you haven't noticed, I love shows like this, that have a solid foothold on reality as well as the unreal, but allow for speculation, postulation, and is self-aware enough for an in-joke or two only long-time viewers would get. This is why I liked the X-Files, Fringe, Heroes (returning soon btw), and now, Agents of SHIELD.

Inhumans = brilliant if true.

Disney/Marvel cannot have mutants because of the X-men license... but genetically engineered is NOT the same thing.
I expect this to be the excuse for a lot of mutant-like abilities in season 2.

AND, am I the only one completely shocked that there was not a GotG reference or tie in? Or is that what the crazy scribble boards are about?

Sniper Team 4:
I was actually disappointed in the fight with Ward because Ward did too well in that fight for all the skill May is supposed to have. Still, a great fight scene though.

She may have been pulling her punches. Remember she wanted him to suffer. Taking him down too quickly wouldn't be as satisfying.

DoctorM:
Inhumans = brilliant if true.

Disney/Marvel cannot have mutants because of the X-men license... but genetically engineered is NOT the same thing.
I expect this to be the excuse for a lot of mutant-like abilities in season 2.

AND, am I the only one completely shocked that there was not a GotG reference or tie in? Or is that what the crazy scribble boards are about?

I can't remember where it was, but I saw an article that was either interviewing Feige or Whedon, but whichever it was said the Inhumans would not be used in substitute of the mutants. Doesn't mean they won't show up, just means they will be the Inhumans and not just the mutants with a new title.

For Guardians of the Galaxy, seems to me that the alien message thing might be leading up to that, since it was an after effect of using something based on a Kree Pureblood found it what I've been informed was a S.W.O.R.D. facility. If true, then we'll probably see it happen in season 2 around the time the movie is released, plus some S.W.O.R.D. references or maybe even agents.

Actually, come to think of it, given we now know there are aircraft, submarines, ships and spaceships (and a still missing helicarrier) along with countless facilities, bases, hid outs, safe houses and more that S.H.I.E.L.D. had (or used) that just keeps begging the question just who has what in their hands? The fact that Fury has a helicopter crew and doctors helping him show the remnants of Shield loyalists are scattered but out there (season two will probably have either it starting with new people coming into that base on the pretext of them being loyalists, having that happen during the show, getting new facilities under their control, or a combination of these) but what about all the Hydra? And the stuff local governments got their hands on? And for the love of god someone do something with Department H or so help me (if I write one of these movies and the Helicarrier from the Avengers is STILL missing I'm saying they took it and are been using it in secret because by that point like hell anyone was going to use it in their own movie).

DoctorM:
Inhumans = brilliant if true.

Disney/Marvel cannot have mutants because of the X-men license... but genetically engineered is NOT the same thing.
I expect this to be the excuse for a lot of mutant-like abilities in season 2.

AND, am I the only one completely shocked that there was not a GotG reference or tie in? Or is that what the crazy scribble boards are about?

The safe money is that is what the crazy scribble boards are all about.

I also think when we look back we will find a bit more GotG tie ins or links, wink and nods, or outright teasers than we actually realized throughout the back half of this season.

Just as an example, Coulson's super gun, was apparently made from the Destroyer from Thor, in order to be preparred to repel other types of Aliens. TAHITI was a SWORD base. A agency who's purpose is to watch for and defend against Aliens. I think the whole Garrett going crazy and the scribblings on the boards indicate a link to either the Supreme Inteligence of the Kree, an artificial organic super inteligence, or the Worldmind of Xandar, the living computer that empowers the Nova Corps. We know both Nova's and Ronan the Accuser a high ranked Kree factor into GotG.

DoctorM:
Inhumans = brilliant if true.

Disney/Marvel cannot have mutants because of the X-men license... but genetically engineered is NOT the same thing.
I expect this to be the excuse for a lot of mutant-like abilities in season 2.

AND, am I the only one completely shocked that there was not a GotG reference or tie in? Or is that what the crazy scribble boards are about?

The safe money is that is what the crazy scribble boards are all about.

I also think when we look back we will find a bit more GotG tie ins or links, wink and nods, or outright teasers than we actually realized throughout the back half of this season.

Just as an example, Coulson's super gun, was apparently made from the Destroyer from Thor, in order to be preparred to repel other types of Aliens. TAHITI was a SWORD base. A agency who's purpose is to watch for and defend against Aliens. I think the whole Garrett going crazy and the scribblings on the boards indicate a link to either the Supreme Inteligence of the Kree, an artificial organic super inteligence, or the Worldmind of Xandar, the living computer that empowers the Nova Corps. We know both Nova's and Ronan the Accuser a high ranked Kree factor into GotG.

jabrwock:

Sniper Team 4:
I was actually disappointed in the fight with Ward because Ward did too well in that fight for all the skill May is supposed to have. Still, a great fight scene though.

She may have been pulling her punches. Remember she wanted him to suffer. Taking him down too quickly wouldn't be as satisfying.

It was actually Ward who was said to be second to the Black Widow. The Cavalry was said to be in a class all her own.

I had just watched the episode on Hulu a couple of hours before I read this review, so this kind of helped put my thoughts on it into words...by which I mean my thoughts were basically the same as what Bob described, but now I understand them: the episode didn't quite have the sense of closure I was expecting from a season finale - although granted, part of that might be because I watched it online on a relatively small-screened laptop, so I didn't immerse quite as much as I might while watching something on a TV - but I also wasn't particularly disappointed by the episode itself in spite of that. Garrett was dealt with in a satisfying manner, May got her throw-down with Ward (surprisingly, the show's stepped up the comedy in the last couple of weeks: "prepare for a large file transfer" last week, and "you were never on top" in the finale both got me to genuinely laugh out loud, which doesn't happen much), the crew officially got the season 2 mission everyone pretty much assumed they would get (though 'Director Coulson' was a nice touch I didn't expect), the cast seems to have mostly sorted itself going into that mission (Ward has been replaced by the less-generic Triplett, and Fitz is still alive but out of commission, shedding the somewhat-extraneous extra 'sciencey' member of the crew), the most intriguing villain by far (Raina) escaped and continued doing intriguing things, and the main mysteries going into next season have been set up (the effects of GH-325 on Coulson, the identity of and inevitable encounter with Skye's parent(s)) and look like things that will actually have relevance to the plot of the show/episode beyond "okay, well, now we know that," which is good.

On the Inhuman angle: the big thing for me that pointed in favor of that particular theory popped up during the conversation between Raina and the possibly-actually-clairvoyant-now Garrett. First Garrett, in talking about how humans are unevolved describes the process of further evolution as "crawling through the mist" onto land - specifically mist, rather than more common terms like mud or earth or whatnot, to the point that it felt more like a specific nod at the Terrigen Mists, which are what trigger the onset of abilities and mutations in Inhumans, than just a figure of speech. Then, right after that, Raina asks "what will [she] become," which...would definitely fit in with that whole angle. Raina is definitely something relevant, probably a similar something to Skye, but finding out just what that something is should be fun. Me, my bet is still on both of them being Inhumans - and since the Inhumans were Kree-created (Kree-ated?), that also makes sense with the connection to the GH-325 and its likely/possible reference to Guardians of the Galaxy. It's not a certainty, but it makes a whole lot of sense.

(...crap, now I'm going to have to wait until when Guardians comes out in August to get my next MCU fix. Damn it all.)

(Also: it wasn't something that was noticeably lacking in the first season, but hopefully the fact that the show is doing well means they'll get an improved special effects budget for next season, right? I feel like they did pretty well with what they had, but the idea of this show getting more special FX stuff to work with is an appealing one, since it means more creative freedom, and generally more possibilities for including stuff.)

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