TV Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D 11

Monday 24 March 2014 by

Agents of SHIELD, Joss Whedon, Channel 4, Marvel, Clark Gregg, TV show, Pilot

It’s taken me so long to catch up with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, so apologies for you who are up to date – this will be some quick “catch up” reviews!

First up…

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D – episode eleven – The Magical Place

*spoilers alert*

Last time we saw our heroes, it had all gone a bit wrong, with Coulson kidnapped by Centipede and Mike Peterson dead. So where does it leave them?

Well, the manhunt for Coulson is truly underway, and this means, naturally, it’s a race against time. Meanwhile, Coulson is under pressure to reveal what happened to him after he died… because he clearly didn’t go to Tahiti.

In this episode, you see Skye at her most resourceful (finding unique ways to get online whilst still wearing her anti-tech bracelet). You see Coulson torn between loyalty and curiosity, and the others do… well… nothing really. But that’s okay, because this is a bit more navel-gazing than we’re used to from the show (though still full of action, futuristic tech, and a particularly flashy Lamborghini).

The central figure in all of this is, of course, Coulson, whose conflicting doubts are strung out to the point that we don’t even know what the right answer is either. After all, Centipede is the Big Bad, and yet all they seem to be doing is trying to give Coulson the answers he wants to find out himself. In the middle of an abandoned nuclear testing ground, he is subjected to torture and begging, but are the answers he decides he wants really what he wants to discover?

The truth, let’s face it, is more disturbing than any of the guesses I’ve been making of late. A giant robot prodding at a brain whilst the person is still awake is a MASSIVE step away from “Thor did something Asgardian”. But hooray for a cameo from Ron Glass (Serenity).

It’s nice to have Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D back on our screens. I’d forgotten the freshness of the show, with its simple enjoyment for what it is – and no great flashy bits to show off (the set might be flashy but the show itself is grounded in good old character-driven plot). Coulson is still, by far, the best character of the series, although Raina is getting pretty close when it comes to Awesome Baddies. Plus, we’re not spoonfed all the answers all at once, instead replacing one answer with another question and just making the whole thing a whole lot more confusing at the end of it. Of course. Why would Joss Whedon do it any other way?

There’s not a whole lot more to say about this episode. Once they drop that little how-he-came-back-to-life bomb on us, we’re left kind of reeling from the whole thing. Knowing that fans have been left waiting for the mid-season break to be over, the creators have wasted no time throwing us back in – reminding us all what we’ve been missing, and giving us just a tiny portion of an answer to keep us hooked. Bravo!

Rating, Four, Review

Have you missed Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D?

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