Battles and betrayal! As usual, you probably shouldn’t read past this point if you haven’t seen this week’s episode of SHIELD.
So just like that, Lash is in a cage! It’s odd that he’s already out of play, but despite that, this episode still provided fantastic material for the characters. Andrew certainly got his heaviest load so far, as he struggled with everyone learning about his dark side. Blair Underwood did an amazing job illustrating this, as Andrew simply couldn’t come to terms with losing his mind. It’s a parallel situation to Bruce Banner and the Hulk — a comparison I’m surprised wasn’t brought up.
In general, Lash provided an entertaining, satisfying last scene, but I want to mention how amazing his make-up is. From his beastly face to his regular, yet different skin, it’s seriously quality work, though the stiff hair going down his back can be distracting. Most of the close-ups looked great, giving fleeting yet detailed glimpses.
The beast himself.
May got some of her best moments since “The Calvary” flashback; this episode told a great arc, explaining what exactly happened between May and Andrew. Ming-Na Wen poured her heart into every scene between the two of them, especially when she shot him into the containment cell. And with the bookend flashback Hawaii scenes, we now know the underlying motivation for her actions: she doesn’t think she deserves to be happy. I have a feeling that what has happened to Andrew will only take May to a dark place.
The truth about Lash finally came to light thanks to Lincoln’s sudden (and convenient), return to the fold, and the show continued its odd pairings — something I’ve found very enjoyable throughout this season — with him and Mack. I’m happy that he’s finally part of the team, although we all knew it would happen, and it was enjoyable to see him take out his revenge on Lash.
On the subject of pairings, we finally got some good scenes between Rosalind and Daisy, as they tore into each others’ opposing stance. It was great to see them interact in actually substantial scenes, rather than just have Daisy complain on the side. The ethical consequences of the ATCU’s suspension gel cells were explored, and everything came full circle when the question of applying them to Andrew surfaced.
Will it work…?
The post-credit scene revealed my biggest issue with this episode: Rosalind Price is in Hydra, which means the ATCU is probably under Hydra influence. That means we’re essentially back to my fear from earlier this season, that we have just another traitorous company in our midst. I liked the idea of the ATCU simply being an organization with a different ethical approach, but not yet another organization under Hydra. However, if the preview for next week is any indication, it’s a setback that might only last a single episode. Maybe I should just trust the writers who have done a good job thus far.
Fitz made some progress in helping Simmons recover the data on her phone — you can’t honestly tell me you felt nothing as he listened to that video message. Not only that, but the scene where they watched the sunset together was flawless. Their romantic relationship is far from over, and their big moments remain some of the most satisfying and touching on the show.
SHIELD is continuing to speed ahead, having wrapped up the Lash story (for now). Part of me is disappointed that it had nothing to do with any older Inhumans, and didn’t lead to more Inhuman lore. And with Luke a part of the team now, it will be interesting to see a new dynamic between him and the other members. As for that final scene, I think I can trust the writers to keep the Rosalind twist out of repetitive territory.
Article by contributor Russ Milheim. If you enjoy his reviews, why not follow him on Twitter?