In a surprise twist in the third act, Marvel’s Agents of SH.I.E.L.D. is actually doing incredibly well. It obviously doesn’t have the stunning numbers it did in it’s first few episodes, but in every respect otherwise, the show is excelling. It comes as no surprise that it seems like the entire season has actually been grafted around this episode. When they pitched the initial idea to the Marvel reps, the writers of S.H.I.E.L.D. became especially privy to knowledge of the then-filming Captain America: The Winter Soldier, that would undoubtedly affect their show for good. Everything culminates to a head in this episode, and it was pulled off ‘marvel’ously.
If you haven’t seen the Captain America sequel yet, DO NOT READ FURTHER, and don’t you even dare watching this episode. It will spoil a truly fantastic film. Anyway, long story short, with the introduction of Hydra as the true threat looming underneath S.H.I.E.L.D.’s wings, regrouping slowly over a period of 7 decades and eventually coming out of the shadows and into the light, no series will have more to worry about changing than this. By the end of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, S.H.I.E.L.D. has completely fallen. Basically they’ll go from agents that have everything at their disposal, to agents scrapping to get by. I for one am looking forward to seeing more of this radical change. Earlier in the series, they had a supposed crossover episode after Thor: The Dark World had aired, but really it was just a ploy to get viewers. It had absolutely nothing to do with the Thor sequel, except perhaps (literally) picking up some trash left after his wake. This is a true tie-in episode – something they’ve been planning for a while, and it correlates with the running mystery of who the clairvoyant is.
Very well done. I’m very excited to see more of these crossover themed episodes (or series of episodes) based around the Marvel universe, and I do hope they plan to capitalize on that unique honor and power given to them. It’s a real treat. Because if you really think about it, the S.H.I.E.L.D. side of the MCU is quite possibly the most boring aspect of it all. To make a functioning, engaging, and entertaining show around the characters is highly difficult. But if they use the show as a way to beef up the backstory or tail-end of their subsequent Marvel films it’ll give the audience and fans more to chew on, and it could fill necessary gaps. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Coulson and his gang show up as cameos for future films.
One thing I really give the episode credit for is making you rethink the characters you think you know. Could he be Hydra? No. Could she? Yes! But she’s not… Fantastic. Really, this episode makes you suspicious of everyone on the team or otherwise and that offers another layer of “oh crap, everything is going completely out of control.” And then when you think you’ve figured it out, you hadn’t actually figured out the half of it. Just as a heads up though, if you don’t want to waste your time, just avoid the after credits scene. Usually there is something interesting to chew on, but this was the first that I didn’t see any need for.
I was a little disappointed with the fact that, although this episode was so rife for a cameo appearance from one of the big screen characters, we didn’t see one. The episode title, “Turn, Turn, Turn” was rumored to be a hint that Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff would be making an appearance, as this is something said by the Black Widow previously. And there were so many scenes that would’ve been perfect for her. But no. Sadly. And although it’s my own fault for letting rumors misguide my judgement, it did spoil the episode from being a perfect 10 in my book. I actually don’t know why it’s called “Turn, Turn, Turn”. Maybe they were listening to the Byrd’s song of the same name. Maybe it’s symbolical of the three big twists that occur throughout the episode. Yes, three big twists (and a plethora of smaller ones). A better name would’ve been “Don’t Fear the Reaper,” or “Cut Off One Head.” Regardless, this episode really impressed me, and the season looks to continue down that route. Stay tuned.