Agents of SHIELD Review: The Director Is Playing a Dangerous Game with a Favorite

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Agents of SHIELD, Season 3, Episode 18 “The Singularity”

The roller-coaster ride picked up where it left off last week. Same tension. Same thrills. Same nerds in love. The formula is working, so there’s really no reason to switch stuff up now.

Plot Snapshot

With Daisy by his side, Hive/Ward begins the task of collecting Inhumans for his colony and laying traps for SHIELD to fall into. Coulson and his team of agents clear out of the rubble of their base to discover they are fighting a war on multiple fronts.

The Big Deal

The Coulson-Daisy relationship has been one of the core character interactions of this series from the start. Agent Phil is normally a tough nut, but he’s always had a soft spot for Daisy (or Skye if you are talking Season 1). She’s not always deserved such respect or empathy from Coulson, but as time has gone on, they have both been through hell yet always had each other’s backs. Daisy, now one of the best agents under Coulson’s command, is a super-powered puppet for an evil entity from Planet Bluetooine wearing the face of an enemy that they loathe. Coulson’s fatherly affections clouded his judgement at times in this episode. Coulson was more than ready to strap a bomb to Lincoln and snuff him out if he happened to get infected by Hive, yet he gave May strict “no kill” orders if they happened to run into Daisy. He tried to back-burner Talbot when he was ready to move on the “science” section of HYDRA but kept him in the dark about his “fallen agent.” Fitz and Simmons are sent into the field to track down a scientist who has experience with research that might cure Daisy. May being May she calls Phil out on the disparity. Later after an extraction attempt goes awry, Coulson actually says the words out loud that Daisy is the daughter he never had. It’s an important first step, but these feelings are sure to color every decision Coulson makes from here on out.

On The Side

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After years of unrequited glances, friend zoning and both characters nearly dying on several occasions, Fitz and Simmons finally had their moment between the sheets. If the payoff wasn’t so satisfying, the pairing would have felt shoehorned into an episode that was bursting with plot developments, action and twists. These two have grown a lot since this series begin. They snapped at Mack when he cracked about them wearing lab coats all the time. The thing is, Mack wasn’t that far off. It’s not been that long ago since Fitz was over his head in the field with Ward in Russia or Jemma was worried about being a bad liar on that train with Coulson. The two scientists have grown a lot since the big HYDRA reveal at the end of Season 1. So seeing them operate with such ease in the SHIELD version of Orphan Black‘s Club Neolution, was eye opening. At their hearts, Leo and Jemma are still the lovable nerds they’ve always been. Now there’s a confidence in their own selves that almost borders on swagger. It’s given them the confidence to take their friendship to a place they’ve both wanted to go since they first met.

Speculation and Observation

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*Daisy is definitely under Hive’s control, but how strong is that control? When she was choking out Fitz, Hive was pulling the strings, but there was something in Daisy’s eyes that spoke that there was a struggle going on there. Credit to Chloe Bennet for a good job of acting with her face on that one.

*The makeup artist in charge of scars was working overtime this week. Everybody on the team had a little battle damage after the base caved in.

*There’s always a second piece to the doomsday device. It’s going to be interesting to see what Hive does with the “only thing that can destroy” him. That backpack thingy will be the Deus Ex Backpachina.

*The writers have been giving May some solid one-liners of late: “Lesser species, my ass!” was a good one.

*We got to see a new Inhuman born for the first time in a while, so welcome to the jungle, Hellfire.

*The enhancement in that woman’s arm was kind of cool. I can’t wait until Apple introduces the iForearm in the near future.

*Hey look, it’s John Hannah of The Mummy and Spartacus (TV) fame. Welcome aboard, may you last longer on the show than your former co-star Lucy Lawless.

*Watching Jemma jab that needle in the guy’s eye was Game of Thrones level creepy.

*The shield hand was a damn cool effect – one of the best from the show this season.

*Does Jemma get a jacket or something for joining the “I Shot Ward” club with Daisy, May and Hunter?

Words To Live By

“Are you comparing us sleeping together to crossing the event horizon?” – Jemma. If you were running out of euphemisms for sex, feel free to ask your partner if they want to cross the event horizon the next time you want to get lucky.

Verdict

This was another busy episode. Thankfully there was enough new and different mixed in with compelling familiar plots to make the hour fly by. Despite all the action the good guys got only marginally closer to taking down Hive, who grew his power immensely. With only a handful of episodes left in the season, this episode may very well be the “darkest before the dawn” of the season. It’s going to be fascinating to see if it’s true.

Craig Wack

For a weekly discussion of comic book TV shows please join Craig Wack and Tatiana Torres for the Agents of GEEK podcast updated every Friday and now on iTunes

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