All those folks who have been complaining since the beginning of the first season of “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” that it wasn’t the comic book superhero show they wanted – they ought to be somewhat pleased with this week’s episode. Kyle MacLachlan returns as the super-dangerous Mister Hyde, and he has gathered a team of super-villains to take revenge on Agent Coulson and his Agents. Also, we get to meet Agent May’s ex-husband, for all this and more, and my thoughts on “One of Us,” I’ll see you on the other side.
Am I the only one who finds it weird that both this episode of “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” and the episode of “The Flash” that aired earlier in the evening both have characters watching old black and white movies? It’s Karla Faye Gideon who watching, played by a very ragged looking Drea de Matteo, late of “The Sopranos” and “Sons of Anarchy.” Karla is a minor character if I remember right from Daredevil with no super powers, but here, she seems to have some rather nasty instruments on her fingers, blades to be precise.
She is one Mister Hyde’s collection of gifted individuals that he’s collected from ‘The Index,’ along with hacker Wendell Levi, and the inhumanly strong Francis Noche (unconfirmed as Ajax from Deadpool). He’s building a team from the Index hacked from S.H.I.E.L.D. of those wronged by the organization, and turned into monsters. His next stop is to pick up David Angar, better known to Bronze Age Daredevil readers as Angar the Screamer, a hippie singer with a dangerous and powerful voice that can cause catatonia and even death.
The Masters of Evil
In the comics, Mister Hyde is not really one to be a team player. He’s actually more of a one-man engine of chaos and destruction, but he has participated at times in the team sport of super-villainy. For a time, he partnered with Cobra to tangle with Thor, and Daredevil a few times. Most notably however, his most memorable team-up was with a large number of villains who called themselves the Masters of Evil. This particular assemblage of sociopaths, led by Baron Zemo accomplished what few had done before – they defeated the Avengers.
No simple defeat was this, called the “Mansion Siege” because it involved this army of terror invading Avengers Mansion, the headquarters of Earth’s mightiest heroes at the time, incapacitating its membership, and holding the place as their own. Hyde personally, with a little help from the Wrecking Crew, the Absorbing Man, Titania, Goliath, and a few others, managed to beat Hercules so badly, he fell into a coma. That’s right, they almost beat a demi-god to death. Hyde is no joke.
Speaking of The Index, Skye knows that she’s going on it. And after a nice heart to heart with Coulson, it’s decided that she needs to be evaluated, but preferably by someone S.H.I.E.L.D. can trust. They go for Agent May’s ex-husband Dr. Andrew Garner, played by Blair Underwood from the long ago “L.A. Law,” and previously and very briefly mentioned in “The Only Light in the Darkness.” The chemistry between May and Garner is wonderfully simultaneously cold and hot at once. I love it.
Once Garner gets in to see Skye, she asks all the questions we ourselves want to know. Did he and May actually talk to each other? Was there pillow talk or just pillow stern looks? And what’s the real story of The Cavalry? Garner trades off a little info to get Skye to talk, and they get on well, until duty calls. I’m liking Blair Underwood on “S.H.I.E.L.D.” He may be what has been needed on this show, not superheroes, or more action, but a higher level of acting.
When Hyde and his posse break Angar out of his maximum security insane asylum sub-basement, they also leave a present for Coulson – crazed killer John Bruno who Mockingbird makes short work of. Man, she is sooo Black Widow, but she’s no substitute for May, who needs to get back in the field. Sorry, but yes, I’m playing favorites. I like Bobbi Morse, but I love Melinda May. In the debris, Hyde leaves Coulson a clue as to where he’s headed – his home town.
After a diner stop where Hyde gives a bit of insight on his own origins, the villains move on to Coulson’s home town, where they unleash Angar on the high school football field, dropping players and cheerleaders alike, and even birds from drop from the sky. I’m not sure what is more disturbing – Angar’s scars, his teeth, the way his jaw unhinges, or the sound that comes out. Kudos to the special effects folks.
When last we left our agents last episode, Mack had choked Hunter out because he had gotten too close to finding out what he and Morse were up to. As we begin this episode, Morse tries to mend fences between Simmons and Fitz with the words, “We’re spies, we lie for a living.” I hate this. I thought we were through with all that Hydra/who can we trust bullsh!t, but I guess not. I want my spy show, yes, but the double agent/double-double agent stuff has gotten very very old at this point.
Morse confides, or tells Coulson that she’s the reason Hunter has bailed. She broke off their relationship, so he quit. Yep, lying for a living. Mack holds Hunter tied to a sink for most of the episode, way to treat your friends. At the end he decides to bring Hunter in on what he and Morse have been up to. They are part of a new organization that came out of the ashes of the old S.H.I.E.L.D. They are ‘the new S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Riiiight.
Eagles Vs. Talons
Mister Hyde and his gang of baddies challenge Coulson and Morse to a duel on the football field. They are clearly outmatched until May shows up, cleverly holding a gun to Skye, threatening to pull the trigger. Yes, it’s a dangerous bluff, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s May. Yes, I’m biased, but still, its true. At this point, most of us are wondering whose metahuman powers are more dangerous – Angar or Quake – that’s when Hyde hands Angar a microphone… As viewers we hold our breath, and brace ourselves… and then the showrunners ruin it.
Deus ex machina. The Inhuman known as Gordon/Reader/Lineage swooped in, grabbed Hyde, and teleported out. We were cheated. Not fair. Up until this point, this had been a very good episode, one of the best of the season, and they cheated us. The fights between May and Noche, and Morse and Gideon were awesome, but even there we were cheated by Skye having an episode and stalling the fight. So much to love about this episode, and they ruined it in seconds. What a waste.
Next: “Love in the Time of Hydra”