– Spoiler Review –
While “…Ye Who Enter Here” certainly serves as a typical penultimate episode by moving players around and setting up events for the (winter) finale, it does it in the new, more confident Agents of SHIELD way: excitingly and entertainingly finding ways to raise the stakes.
Last week I threw out the idea that Ward is actually part of a plan by Coulson and this week saw a few more hints (or I saw what I wanted to be hints): The first scene was May and Skye watching the news report about Ward’s family’s death; May’s somewhat surprised, but intrigued reactions to Skye’s words about killing Ward, after May prompted her with questions, definitely seems suspicious given they’re all supposed to hate him and want him dead. The second scene was Whitehall and Agent 33 (with May-face) in the car, where she fills him in about Ward’s non-sanctioned choices. All his actions so far have been in the interest of protecting of Skye, whom Coulson wants protected more strongly than anyone else. I could be grasping at straws, but the evidence is beginning to pile up.
The only weak part of the episode would be the instances where Bobbi’s and Coulson’s conversations fell on the heavier side of exposition as they worked their way through the Puerto Rican city. It was a lot of, “well, he did this because…” or “if we go there and then there…” and of late AoS has hidden that pretty well but it was too obvious here. That being said, the conversation between Bobbi and Coulson regarding how close to Fury Coulson could be was quick and to the point but interesting to get to hear. It makes me wonder if whatever secret Bobbi and Mac were discussing in the Quinjet could be related to her questioning of Coulson, like her being some type of safe guard installed by someone else to watch over Coulson’s decisions to ensure he’s not becoming another Fury.
Putting Skye and Raina together led to Skye learning a lot of info she and our team haven’t had most of the season. Also, Raina’s fanaticism to Skye’s father vs Skye’s loyalty to her surrogate father Coulson (who received a hug from Skye to remind us how she feels about him) led to some fun conversations. I loved the way Raina scoffed at Skye’s worries about being alien, which kind of sounded like the writers laughing off all our speculation about her being one; instead she’s definitely human, just possibly chosen for whatever cleansing the Kree had in mind. Is their destiny, those who the Diviner picks to be worthy, to become…Inhuman? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: it’d be really cool to see Skye go from AoS to headlining the upcoming Inhuman movie.
The Fitz and Simmons drama heats up this week, with Bobbi giving Simmons the age-old advice to just be completely honest and Mac forcing their conversation on the Quinjet, but the results were a little surprising. Simmons was finally ready to open up and commit, while Fitz, who has been forever altered by his brush with death, is ready to separate them even further. Admittedly, it’s actually a tad heartbreaking, as the performances and writing has really been solid for these characters since the first season. There have been romantic underpinnings between Simmons and Trip since his introduction, so I wouldn’t be surprised if the Fitz-Simmons relationship drama continues with Simmons ending the winter finale with Trip, especially after Fitz’s choice here. However, it’s funny to watch the entire team secretly trying to get them back together.
As has been the case with the action scenes this year, Skye’s battle with Agent 33 (who we last saw receiving her burnt on May-face in “Face My Enemy”) was brutal and realistic. It functions as a way to show Skye’s grown her skills exponentially this year, while the rest of the episode show’s her emotional growth. In exact contrast to their battle is the ensuing fracas in the tunnels over an entrance to the ancient Kree city (confirmed Kree by Raina!) after Mac becomes “infected.” Mac has become a welcomed member of the team and just as he was really getting interesting, it was sad to see this happen to him. I can’t say for sure he’s dead, but the Mac we all knew most likely is. Was he infected because he wouldn’t be picked by the Diviner and shouldn’t have gotten that far into the city?
Here are a few other things:
- The fact they actually went to Puerto Rico for this episode made for some really great, non-green screen shots of the city. The panoramic view of Coulson on top the fort was a stunning shot and it lends a certain realism to the proceedings.
- Multiple Patton Oswalts = pure hilarity. Also, kind of creepy.
- I appreciated the quick explanation as to why Agent 33 was left by the team after she was knocked out.
- Where can I get that cloaking umbrella? Or can I only get that if I ask Santa?
- I’ve always enjoyed Raina on this show, as she has a particular way of phrasing things which show her drive and beliefs rather strongly. We also got some information on her background, where she ran around with “freaks” until Skye’s dad rescued her.
- And that opening dream sequence? All sorts of weird but also all sorts of intriguing; it’s odd we haven’t seen a dream from Skye before, but maybe they’ve only just started.
The stage set by “…Ye Who Enter Here,” is an interesting one: Skye is in the hands of Ward and Hydra, set to meet her father (something Coulson does not want); Hydra is on their way to the ancient city in what is sure to be an epic clash; Whitehall ordered the destruction of the Bus; the team has come face to face with alien technology and it looks like they might not be ready for the challenges it presents going forward. Will those who are chosen by the Diviner see their destiny? What will Skye’s father do upon finally meeting his daughter who certainly cares little for him? Will my theory about Ward prove to be correct? It’s funny to think a year ago I was no where near as interested or invested in Agents of SHIELD‘s story and now here I am dreading week wait for the winter finale.
+ Skye and Raina
+ Fitz-Simmons drama
+ Great set up for winter finale
– Some exposition heavy dialogue
MARVEL’S AGENTS OF SHIELD REVIEWS:
Season Two: 2.1 Shadows | 2.2 Heavy is the Head | 2.3 Making Friends and Influencing People | 2.4 Face My Enemy | 2.5 A Hen in the Wolf House | 2.6 A Fractured House | 2.7 The Writing on the Wall | 2.8 The Things We Bury | 2.10 What They Become | 2.11 Aftershocks | 2.12 Who You Really Are | 2.13 One of Us | 2.14 Love in the Time of Hydra | 2.15 One Door Closes | 2.16 Afterlife | 2.17 Melinda | 2.18 The Frenemy of My Enemy | 2.19 The Dirty Half Dozen | 2.20 Scars | 2.21,22: S.O.S.
MARVEL’S AGENT CARTER REVIEWS:
Season One: 1.1 This is Not the End/1.2 Bridge and Tunnel | 1.3 Time and Tide | 1.4 The Blitzkrieg Button | 1.5 The Iron Ceiling | 1.6 A Sin to Err | 1.7 SNAFU | 1.8 Valediction