Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Episode 18: How has The Winter Soldier affected Marvel’s TV show?
Neil Brazier | On 06, May 2014
Since the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier and the fallout from Episode 17, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D feels like a whole new show. While it has certainly been better since the mid-season break, it’s reinvented itself again now – just as S.H.I.E.L.D. has had to rebuild and redefine itself.
This could be viewed as a double-edged sword; if the show had been firing on all cylinders from Episode 1, would the events of The Winter Soldier have impacted the show in a negative sense? Fortunately, we don’t have to worry, as it’s given the show a new dynamic from which to build. Previously bland characters have been given new hope and direction, even if it means groaning at the silly mistakes they made.
With Agent Garret no longer his SO, Triplett has found himself aboard the bus, injecting some spice into the FitzSimmons relationship. Men who grew up as the nerdy outsider will relate wholeheartedly with Fitz when he says “The last thing I want is for things to change”. The true love is there but he’s too scared to admit it – with Triplett in more confined quarters, maybe our Fitz has lost his chance?
To coincide with the new agency direction we also get to see some fresh faces in Glenn Talbot (Adrian Pasdar), who is known to have had altercations with Hulk, and Level Six S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Eric Koenig (Patton Oswalt), who offers some comic relief since everyone got so serious. Speaking of which, it’s hard not to laugh when Coulson decides to tear into his team: he doesn’t so much yell as merely maintain a steady level of irritation. Has Coulson finally shown us his Achilles heel? He’s been the absolute best in terms of delivery, until now.
There are still some loose ends that appear to have been forgotten. Skye is an O84 and doesn’t know who her parents are, while seeds were sewn in a Skye/Ward/May love triangle. Now, the true romance is between Fitz and Simmons. But despite any untied strands, everything is tighter and much more concise than before. Fitz and Simmons play off each other perfectly time and time again. With only a few episodes remaining, is there time to clonk their heads together and demand those crazy kids get together?