The basic thrust of this episode centers around Hannah, kind of a reverse Longshot; if she’s around, the odds will be defied and terrible things will happen, whether it’s a gas station blowing up or a cop car suddenly trying to flatten one of the angry mob of villagers that this show apparently believes live in Utah. Coulson has the brilliant idea of taking this woman onto his flying headquarters, because it’s not dangerous when things go wrong on an airplane. Haunted house-type antics ensue.
This episode is largely centered around May, meaning Ming-Na Wen finally has something to do other than stand around looking stern and occasionally punch people. We learn that she and Ward have been boning off and on in the opening of the episode, and the end stinger shows she might be warming up a bit, paying off the running gag of pranks running through the episode.
The main problem is the villain; as characterized, basically he’s not evil enough. The episode hints all throughout that the real antagonist, who admittedly is a great one-off villain, was trying to sabotage Hannah’s career, and you think you’re getting a classic supervillain unable to admit his agonizing powers are his own fault.
Instead the episode chickens out. It turns out he’s just a lovestruck puppy dog phasing between universes, and we’re supposed to feel bad for him despite the fact that he has literally done absolutely nothing redeemable or justifiable throughout the entire episode. How he’s disposed of is irritating, as well; one suspects there’s a better draft of this episode, sitting in the network’s drawer.
That said, at least the episode flows and follows on its strong concept, and for once we have an actual supervillain. And in two weeks, it looks like J. August Richards will be back as the Luke Cage knockoff. Maybe soon we’ll have a superhero and a supervillain in the same episode!
Some more thoughts:
- Skye is increasingly showing her value as a member of the team, although you have to wonder why “checking Facebook” isn’t part of S.H.I.E.L.D. S.O.P.
- That “angry mob” in front of Hannah’s house is possibly one of the saddest moments this show has put together.
- You kind of think it’d be Coulson and May together, but Ward and May is pretty fun. It’s pretty rare for a TV show to feature an Asian woman in her fifties boning a guy half her age.
- Fitz and Simmons suck at pranking.
Any thoughts? Let us know in the comments!