So… that just happened. Major spoilers lie ahead, so make sure you’re caught up!
Wow. Within two minutes, none other than Grant Ward murdered Rosalind on her innocent dinner date with Coulson. As impactful as that was, part of me finds it weird that she’s dead, just like that. We were just getting to know her, yet here we are — it feels like the ATCU as a whole was swiftly killed off. It’s slightly disappointing for that entire story line to come to such an abrupt end, but it gave such an adrenaline boost to everything else going on that it lessened the loss of the ATCU players.
Rosalind’s death gave us the most unhinged Coulson we’ve seen to date, and Clark Gregg did a great job showing that weight on his shoulders. And fighting the Hydra agents gave us a glimpse into the skill set we rarely see him utilize. His determination to kill Ward is intimidating, especially when he’s going to such lengths as to threaten Ward’s only living brother. Would he have actually let that happen? I think he very well might have.
It seems SHIELD is gearing up for a big conclusion to Ward’s three-season story. Will he die? It’s certainly possible, especially if Coulson gets his way with them both stranded on the same alien planet. The twist with Ward in Season One was one of the show’s best moments, and personally, I think he should be considered in the top tier of MCU villains. On top of that, the show has done a stellar job with his backstory, with this episode fleshing out what seems to be the final piece of his story, what truly motivates him.
He must seriously have something against Fitz and Simmons too. Once again, our lovebirds have found themselves in a life-threatening situation due to Grant Ward. Iain De Caestecker continues to shine in every scene, and Fitz continued to be the best human on the planet (I mean, can anyone truly reach his level?), volunteering to go through the portal to save Jemma and Will. God, I hope he and Simmons get a happy ending, because it would be devastating to lose one of them.
Finally, something the show has been teasing since before this season has started finally gotten off the ground: the Secret Warriors! The first incarnation of the team is official (I was hoping to see Duplicating Girl in the lineup, but hey, maybe next time), even if we have to wait a week to see them in action.
The teams are growing.
This season of Agents of SHIELD has been fantastic, with great momentum that hasn’t let up. It looks like we’re in for an explosive mid-season finale (especially if the cast’s hype is any indication), and I couldn’t be more excited. Not only will we see the Secret Warriors in action, but we’re also sure to have some heavyweight scenes with Fitz and Ward reluctantly working together. If you were to tell me back when the pilot premiered that this show would be this good, I wouldn’t have believed you. But here we are.
Article by contributor Russ Milheim. If you enjoy reading these reviews, be sure to follow him on Twitter!