To paraphrase Forbes Magazine, “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is about to become the show everyone wanted it to be. In an article last week they talked about how people wanted a superhero show, and Joss Whedon gave them an espionage show. Now, things are changing, and this week, in the second part of the “Uprising” event, we get Lady Sif and Lorelei from the Thor mythos. Meet me after the jump for my review of “Yes Men.”
Much like Thor in Marvel Comics, Sif was based on the Norse goddess of the same name. She and Thor have been friends and give-or-take romantically linked since childhood. One could say that Sif has always had a thing for Thor, but as exampled by her similar interest in Beta Ray Bill and Eric Masterson, she might just like guys who wield the power of Thor and can lift the magic hammer Mjolnir.
In this position as Thor’s pseudo-girlfriend in Asgard, I always kinda wondered why she never came to Earth and smited that pain in the butt Jane Foster. Come to think of it, why didn’t she ever beat the crap out of Thor, after all he is like a promiscuous sailor with a girl in Asgard and one on Earth. Played by the gorgeous Jaimie Alexander, as she was in the first two Thor films, she comes to Earth, and television, in pursuit of Lorelei.
I never read Thor comics as a kid. I mean, I knew all his stuff from reading Avengers, but I never picked up any issue of Thor until Walter Simonson took over the title as writer and artist. He brought sweeping changes to the character and his mythology, and created a run that is truly legendary in the comics world. This is where I first came upon Lorelei.
Created by Simonson as the Enchantress’ kid sister, who could bend men around her finger to obey her whim. She was a new young version of her big sister the classic Thor and Avengers villainess, with none of the morals or the limitations. And she set her sights on the thunder god almost immediately. This did not make the Lady Sif very happy. I’m sure those feelings may carry over onto their television counterparts where Lorelei is played by Elena Satine, who was previous Mera on “Smallville” and Judi Silver on “Magic City.” Perfect casting.
Taking a cue from the Marvel Comics “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is based on, the TV series is having a comic book style event. Like Age of Ultron or Infinity in the comics, the show has taken on the subtitle “Uprising” in a multi-part storyline that will supposedly weave into and out of the upcoming Captain America The Winter Soldier.
Other seeing the more military shoot-first-ask-questions-later aspect of SHIELD last week with Agents Garrett and Triplett, we’ve yet to see any real problems that may have been suspected to be in the film, like SHIELD being too powerful or double-crossing. Time will tell, I suppose. Maybe sooner than we think…
Before we start, this is a sidenote to last week’s episode where Agent Coulson came upon a creature in a room marked ominously T.A.H.I.T.I. As to what it was, my initial guesses in the review were another Deathlok, Coulson’s real body, or an alien. This caused quite a discussion on Twitter among my fellow Biff Bam Pop! writers Andy Burns and JP Fallavollita.
JP thinks the body is Kree, which would go along with my alien guess, his thinking is that it would tie in with this summer’s Guardians of the Galaxy film. Andy is sure it’s not. Andy doesn’t believe Marvel would introduce massive money making concepts in a television show that’s underperforming when they could put it in a film. Underperforming? Hey! Anyway, this is a big deal, they bet a steak dinner. That’s right, steak is at stake.
My take on having thought about it for a week… maybe it’s Atlantean? Is there a Namor film on Marvel’s list? Not yet… but one never knows, does one? It’s not nice to out-guess Joss Whedon, especially on TV. You don’t tug on Superman’s cape, you don’t pull the mask off the old Lone Ranger, and you don’t try to second-guess Joss Whedon. What do you folks think that creature was?
After we watch Lorelei take over a motorcycle gang, we move to The Bus on the ground where Skye is recuperating and wakes up. Things are good, she’s healing at an unreal rate and Simmons and Fitz can’t find any trace of the miracle drug in her system. They are similarly concerned about Coulson who’s been jumpy about since she was injected, as well he should be.
Coulson himself is pulling favors looking for SHIELD Director Nick Fury. Apparently he’s off-grid, how convenient. Just like in the comics, if Nick Fury doesn’t want to be found, he won’t be, unless he’s looking for you. This sounds quite ominous based on what we’ve seen the Captain America The Winter Soldier trailer. I mean, he gets blown up for keeping secrets, right?
Asgardian Welcome Wagon
While Coulson takes personal time to look for Fury and sort out images of blue meanie torsos, the team gets readings that indicate an Asgardian incursion in California. Nice shout outs to Drs. Erik Selvig and Jane Foster. They’re sent to be the welcome wagon. While on the road Sif beams down onto one of those cool Mothra runes right in front of them.
She’s looking for SHIELD. Um, why not Thor, or the Avengers? I mean, really, wouldn’t that be her first stop? If I’m thinking right, she should know where to find them. Nevertheless, Sif is hunting Lorelei who escaped during the confusion when the Dark Elves attacked Asgard in Thor The Dark World. They track Lorelei pretty easily and plan an assault.
Sif and Coulson
Coulson rejoins the team once Sif comes on board and they chat. She’s surprised he’s alive after being slain by Loki, so that lets out Asgardian technology. Speaking of technology, Sif picks up ours pretty quickly, commenting on its antiquity. Again, Asgard being technology based rather than magic based is a cinematic change I like.
Coulson quizzes her on races she’s encountered that are blue. Sif namedrops the Kree, the Sarks, and the (Alpha-) Centaurians, among others. No mention of the Atlanteans though. Yondu (played by Michael Rooker of “The Walking Dead”) is set to appear in Guardians of the Galaxy and he’s an Alpha-Centaurian, but I’m pretty sure this is the first mention of the Kree in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In a desert bar Sif tears through the building and Lorelei’s minions while the Queen of the Bikers herself makes a break for it. I would love an entire episode of just Sif beating up bikers, that would rock. She encounters Agent Ward, and takes him. Under Lorelei’s control, he takes her to place befitting a queen, Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas.
Once the team tracks them there however, Ward finds a better palace for her – The Bus, killing two birds with one stone as he gives Lorelei the gift of power, and takes out their main threat. This leads to the expected internal conflicts – May vs. Ward, Simmons vs. Fitz, and of course Lady Sif vs. Lorelei.
The Show Everyone Wanted
So was Forbes Magazine right? Did we get the show everyone wanted? I think we did. If all the “SHIELD” naysayers watched the show, they would have action, character development, and superheroes and super-villains. That’s what y’all wanted, right? Guest-stars Jaimie Alexander and Elena Satine were wonderful in their roles as super-powered Asgardians, as I said earlier, I certainly would not mind more of that. And there were more than a few Marvel Universe Easter eggs as well.
Not only was there a lot of action, there was much forward motion in the character interaction, and most importantly secrets. I think we will see resolution in the Coulson mystery very soon, and perhaps Skye as well. And I’m happy that I was right about May knowing more than she was letting on. I knew that she was really in charge. As far as what the blue alien is… well, I guess that steak is still at stake, but further speculation is invited.