Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 1×14 “T.A.H.I.T.I.” (EPISODE REVIEW)


Despite S.H.I.E.L.D.s impressive pilot numbers, the show hasn’t kept up since. It wasn’t even that impressive of a pilot, actually. The issue is, primarily, it’s a Joss Whedon show in a world in which television has evolved past the likes of Buffy and Firefly. Many watched a few episodes, losing interest quick, or never interested to begin with. But is the show worth watching? When this first season finishes, will it get picked up for a second? Will it be worth having a marathon night?

One thing that T.A.H.I.T.I. brings to the table are answers to questions we’ve been asking all along, namely ‘how is Coulson still alive after the events of The Avengers?’ Is it a satisfying answer? Well, that’s up for debate. We now understand how, but we now realize the real question is ‘why?’ Why did they bring him from the dead? Did Fury just really like him? Also, who is this ‘Clairvoyant’? Who the hell is that blue dude in the tube?

As a whole, I finally understand where they’re planning on taking the series. It’ll essentially be the bridge between the future Marvel films – tiding us over, one by one. The end of the episode introduced us to Lorelei, a popular villain in the Thor universe, an Asgardian herself, and the next episode promises a return of Sif, warrior princess! This probably won’t be the shows greatest episode, but seeing familiar faces will be totally worth it. It already looks better than their dismal attempt at a Thor 2 crossover episode… And their mid credits sting of the Captain America logo was possibly the coolest thing yet.

The special effects are some of the best on television – no small wonder, with all the money being injected into the series via Disney/ABC. It’s reached the point where it no longer looks like CGI. The plane sequences are beautiful and scary-realistic. And the fight sequences are getting better and better (Ward’s 10 second fight was fast-paced, choreographed magnificently and just damn cool).

But the show’s number one problem from the beginning was the extremely shallow characters. And over the past 14 episodes we’ve only really been privy to two characters back-stories enough where we can begin to understand them – Skye and Phil. The rest of the show’s characters are still very 2-dimensional in form, although they are slowly and surely coming into their own skins.

I may have thought that certain episodes in the shows past were the beginnings of S.H.I.E.L.D.s stride toward greatness, but every time I’ve proven myself wrong. T.A.H.I.T.I. is the series best episode to date and brings a lot of awesome to the table, picking up story strands from the last episodes extremely well orchestrated cliffhanger (which unfortunately took a whole month). But we got to see Bill Paxton have a nice cameo and he brought new life to the show.

I hope this episode is the beginning of the show’s stride, as it all seems to have started incorporating the Marvel universe much better, but realistically, at the pace it’s going now, that solid stride won’t be met until the end of the season or start of the next. Is Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Worth watching/catching up on? Yes. Why? Well, the Marvel brand is pushing new boundaries, and soon the tv series (pl) side of the universe will be incorporated into the theatrical. With the Netflix series (pl) beginning filming this summer, it’ll help keep us abreast – and who knows, it might surprise us. I’m expecting, if it makes it to a second season, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will be Marvel’s slow answer to Arrow.

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