It wasn't what I expected... it's more like, the Terrigen chemicals "leaked into the ocean". And, I'm guessing Marvel wrote it such that the fish (not being human) didn't suffer the fate of humans when coming into contact / consuming the contaminating "Diviner material" as the Terrigen Crystals dissolved into the ocean waters. And, I'm guessing the fish metabolism "purified" the Terrigen chemicals (or the salt in the water did) so that the human masses around the world won't be stricken with charcoal shingles as their Inhuman neighbors devolved into a cocoon.
But, it was a nice touch. I was figuring there would be some sort of wide-spread Terrigen "outbreak" come out of this episode and, apparently, I was right. I just didn't foresee the method. In the comics, it was a literal bomb (pure from the Diviner material, so it didn't destroy humankind) ignited in the atmosphere that spread to all corners of the world spawning millions? of transformations. In the MCU? Fish and fish byproducts. Nice... touch.
Follow-up (5/14/15): The Diviner material contaminating the Terrigen Crystals is a metal. Metal sinks. And, when the crystal dissolves from around the metal, the contamination is left at the bottom of the ocean. The danger to the human population is eliminated.
It also allows the arc to extend beyond the first part of next season. Why would they look at the fish products? 90% of the people who consumed them were unaffected (no Diviner contamination - no death). They'll probably blame it on a virus or something early on. And, fish from that area will still be drawn out of the ocean for generations to come.
It was really satisfying
At first, the thought of two super powered beings going toe-to-toe with Skye eventually blowing her mother to smithereens was thrilling. BOOM! SPLAT! Blood and guts everywhere!
But, Cal was right... for Daisy to have that on her "ledger" - at her young age - would have weighed heavily on her for the rest of her life. Cal was emphatic in his memorial of Jiaying being a good person before Whitehall cut her to pieces. Skye knows, now, that her parents (both) were good people caught up in extreme circumstances and she can build on that.
I was happy
Coulson and Daisy (she seems to have accepted the name, now that she knows the love her parents had for her and the sacrifices they made) are on a new path. They now know about the Inhumans and they realize the distrust the non-powered masses will engender towards those who have powers that might be slinking around among them.
So, they are going to provide protection to whatever Inhumans they can find and they will work, diligently, to keep them off any Index. This will set S.H.I.E.L.D. in direct opposition to the Government Registration Programs that will be enacted around the world in [Captain America: Civil War](tag:994409). It will put S.H.I.E.L.D. squarely on the side of Captain America (especially since Phil has already established a precedent for leaving someone important off the Index when he allowed Professor Elliot Randolph (an Aesgardian) to maintain his anonymity even offering a place for him in the Pacific Northwest).
When Skye introduced herself to the veterinarian, "Doctor Winslow", at the end of the episode, she introduces herself as Daisy. This is a fundamental change of who she believes she is and allows her to stake her own acceptance of her entire back story to bring in her parentage and her family history. It gives her roots.
I was impressed
The dialog between Coulson and Cal where Coulson finally caused Cal to accept what he'd known all along - that his wife was not the same person she was before Whitehall destroyed her - was excellent. Gregg's delivery was intense and Cal's responses were all magnificently played. The entire sequence continues to run through my head like a great song off the radio.
Seeing Cal give up his life-long vendetta and his subservience to Jiaying for the sake of rescuing his daughter from the destruction that would befall her was heart warming. The consistency of the Coulson character to always give the benefit of the doubt will one day come back to bite him - but, so far, it has only enhanced his character.
I jumped for joy
When I saw Cal moving that sign out of "his" veterinary clinic at the end of the show, I almost cried. I loved that character and I will miss him. Kyle MacLachlin is one of our national treasures and his presence this season (along with Adrianne Palicki (Bobbi Morse) and Nick Blood (Lance Hunter)) were the depth and color in the season and those new attributes really added to the experience.
The canvas is still Clark Gregg (Director Phil Coulson), Chloe Bennet (Skye / Daisy Johnson), Ming-Na Wen (Melinda May), Iain De Caestecker (Leo Fitz) and, possibly, Elizabeth Henstridge (Jemma Simmons - who was unceremoniously sucked into that Kree stone at the end of the episode - wonder what effect that will have on her (finally!) date with Leo?).
But, the canvas has changed texture. Those characters and the new direction S.H.I.E.L.D. will be taking to protect, rather than Index, all those new Inhuman enhanced who will be popping up all over the world will probably not sit well with some of their new S.H.I.E.L.D. teammates.
But, with the way Lincoln and Daisy pitched in to help S.H.I.E.L.D. and to protect the "misled, not bad" Inhuman community at the same time, maybe they will come around.
As for Cal, he took a trip to T.A.H.I.T.I. and got a new start on life. As Doctor Winslow, we get to see his genuinely good heart restored and his love for life given an outlet to be able to help others - even if it is as an animal doctor. He is still in a place where that noble heart can thrive without all the corruption and angst that had so sullied it over the past twenty-odd years.
And, Daisy came by for a visit. I'll bet it won't be the last.
I was surprised
When Raina told Skye that they "would never speak again", I had no idea what that meant. Then, when she willingly gave up her life so that Skye would see what her mother had truly become, she made herself a place in my good memory cabinet for all time.
She was genuine at the end. And, she was loyal to protecting the Inhumans - her true family - from the destruction that was sure to flow had Jiaying been able to win the war against S.H.I.E.L.D. and turn their attention to the rest of humanity. With Skye in opposition, Raina knew that right would triumph. She was the "thorn that protected the Daisy". Irony.
And, I was surprised to see Gordon die. I had expected he and Raina would continue on for years wreaking havoc against humanity (and S.H.I.E.L.D.) around the world. But, that is one of those "textures" that will only be found in the history of the MCU. Now, an entire new crop of story lines will have to be developed for the next season.
When I realized Grant Ward (Brett Dalton) would be the one to resurrect Hydra. Ouch. He'll need to find hiself some money men... and, he's probably the last guy I'd want to see running an organization like that. Hydra had been beaten and beheaded by Coulson and his crew. There were no more heads to pop up... until Grant Ward and his vendetta.
He'll take some highly placed politicians (or their children) into custody and offer one of those "incentive packages" Hydra loves to promote. He'll probably do the same with a couple of billionaires. Where's Ian Quinn these days... ?
And, Hydra will be back in business. It won't take him long to locate some of their facilities and get their research programs started back up.
That makes it very gratifying
Melinda May and one other S.H.I.E.L.D. agent are all that are left to support Hunter's frantic search for Bobbi. It was ingenious for Marvel to script it so that May directs nobody (there isn't anyone left!) to the southern end of the building and to not make a move until they "see my face"!
Kara, not knowing there was no one left in that area other than Ward, races to the southern end of the building (where May knows he is patrolling as that is where her last agents were known to be). As Kara runs, she electronically changes her face to May's.
Ward doesn't know this.
As she flashes into his view, he appears out of nowhere and gut-shoots her several times - forcing the gun up towards her heart to insure May is dead. But, it isn't May. When he realizes he has killed his own love, he is destroyed.
Now, his vendetta against S.H.I.E.L.D. is real. It has substance. It will be resolved and it will cost a lot of lives.
I was disappointed
The Supreme Inhuman that would be taking a war to humanity in an effort to wipe out all that was not Inhuman ended up not having any offensive abilities, at all. She could suck the life out of a person (any person human or Inhuman) to facilitate her own healing... and her long life - her power was very similar to the little girl in the "Melinda Episode" a few weeks back. But, all she had to contribute in the war was her lies, her deceit and her dedicated followers who would eventually (as did Lincoln and Skye) figure out her plans were selfish and downright evil.
And, she did all that with a motherly smile and simple hope that she could get it all done before her charges turned on her. Didn't happen. Her own family proved to be her downfall. Now, all those other Inhumans who had followed her will sit confused and and they will be concerned for their futures as they are stranded amongst a humanity that had, they thought, tried to wipe them out.
I almost lept over the back of my sofa
When that "Kree Stone" sloshed out of its glass vault and soaked up Jemma Simmons, I found myself standing in front of my seat. Wow. Did not... certainly, did not... see... that... COMING!!!
So, what does that mean? Marvel? It's FOUR DAMN MONTHS UNTIL SEPTEMBER!!!
WHAT'S IT MEAN?!?!
MA-A-A-A-R-V-E-L!!! SAY SOMETHING!!!
Lord. We gotta wait. Sit down, Ed. It's gonna be a long summer.
I knew when Fitz' arm "slipped" on that door that he had caused it to release. What I didn't realize was the liquid that would roll out would engulf and capture anyone who was within reach of it and suck them back into the stone rather than just poison or infect anyone it contacted.
Now, we have to wait until at least September before we find out what happened to our beloved Jemma. It'll be fits all night trying to sleep until then. Poor Fitz. Bad nights.
Now, I am curious
Daisy asked Phil how many Inhumans they had on the new team he had asked her to create. "Just you", was his reply. "We're going to take it slow". I think Daisy appreciated that.
But, we do know Lincoln now has a relationship with S.H.I.E.L.D. and that the two sides can build on it so that trust can be maintained and enhanced. We know about the Multiplying Maid who Lincoln disabled to free up Skye so she could pursue her mother. And, we know about a couple of other Inhuman "muscle" who didn't really exhibit any abilities, but were on hand aiding Jiaying in her war on humanity, bopping people on the head. About all they did was bruise a few human chins and torsos.
So, that is at least four other Inhumans, besides Daisy, who should be available to assist S.H.I.E.L.D. in creating the safe environment the Inhumans will need to be able to thrive.
Might Coulson's new team eventually become the S.H.I.E.L.D. division that will, ultimately, become Secret Warriors? Since code names really aren't an integral part of the MCU, would they even call it Secret Warriors... or, would they just call it: S.W.O.R.D. (Sentient World Observation and Response Department); as a branch of S.H.I.E.L.D.?
It was good
I enjoyed seeing Hunter go save his woman. It was even better seeing his woman single-handedly, while in bonds, escape and almost take down two of the most proficient (and dangerous) agents S.H.I.E.L.D. ever produced. There was a good balance there.
He was running headlong into a trap, giving himself up just in the slightest hope there was a sliver of a chance he might be able to save her while she was teetering, desperately, tied in a chair chained to the floor trying to get herself into the path of that bullet that would explode the head and life of the man she loved so dearly.
It was the first time this season when I felt the two were on even terms. Prior to this, Hunter's character had revolved around that of Bobbi's and it was not balanced. She dominated him. He needs to be just as strong as she in order for this to work.
If they can develop their relationship with this kind of balance over the next year, then I can see a spin-off of those two characters into their own show. What I was seeing before this? Dead in the water. It would never have worked. I doubt the pilot would have achieved the necessary twenty or thirty viewers for ABC to even want to continue it. Well... I would probably have watched the pilot - out of loyalty to the brand...
And, ABC knew this, even if Marvel didn't. Maybe we can get some synergy here that will insure the Marvel brand isn't shunted into a morass of misconceived mishmashes of underdeveloped characters the way Spiderman had gotten over at Sony.
That would be provided the spin-off was actually a Bobbi-Lance love-spies proposition. If the spin-off had been Secret Warriors (or S.W.O.R.D.) featuring Daisy Johnson? Well, maybe holding the existing team together one more year will insure [Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.](tag:722469) is on solid footing before splintering off parts of the team into other endeavors.
But, it would have been awesome.
Still... what is it that John Ridley is working out for Marvel?
And, Finally, I wonder
Will Agent Weaver (Christine Adams) stay with the show? Agent Oliver (Mark Allan Stewart) caught charcoal fever when Jiaying tossed a Terrigen Crystal into the room with him and several other of the captured S.H.I.E.L.D. agents on the Iliad. Turned out none of them were born with the Inhuman gene. Sayornara, dudes.
But, Agent Weaver could restart the S.H.I.E.L.D. Academy that had so successfully funneled so many bright and eager agents into the organization. She could also create programs Daisy could use to help train the stray Inhumans Daisy's new team finds who will need guidance and nurturing as they discover their place in the world. Some of those would make some pretty "wicked" (as Ron Weasley was prone to say) agents in S.H.I.E.L.D. & S.W.O.R.D.'s endeavors to protect humanity from things they don't understand and powered people from a skittish and superstitious human population with whom they share a planet.
It was good
Alphonso "Mack" Mackenzie (Henry Simmons) had left S.H.I.E.L.D. in Episode 20. He was still on the ship, Iliad, when the Inhumans attacked, though, and he ended up being the spark of resistance that allowed S.H.I.E.L.D. to retake the ship and prevent Jiaying and Gordon from touching off the Terrigen Crystals that would have surely killed all but a tiny fraction of the crew (those who might have been lucky enough to have the Inhuman gene).
He was also the one who lopped off Coulson's lower arm to prevent the spread of the Diviner contamination that would have killed him (the GH-325 treatment Phil received did not, it turns out, make him immune to the effects of the Diviner - he won't be transitioning into anything other than dear old Phil). Mack's respect for Coulson was never in question - but, there was distrust due to the alien tech used to restore Coulson. Phil finally conceived a way to quell the jellies that had rumbled around in Mack's stomach ever since he'd been possessed in that underground city in Puerto Rico - the one where Skye and Raina were transitioned.
Coulson put him in charge of all the artifacts - alien or otherwise - that S.H.I.E.L.D. has collected over the years and gave him discretion over how they should be protected.
Follow-up (5/14/15): Every Marvel Phase II Production has paid tribute to Star Wars (specifically, to Luke Skywalker, Mace Windu and Emporer whatshisname getting their arms cut off - a total of seven characters over the 6 movies with every movie having at least one). In Avengers: Age of Ultron, it was Klawe; in Thor: The Dark World, Loki created an illusion where he cut off Thor's arm; in Guardians of the Galaxy, Gamora cut off Groot's arms (they grew back, of course); in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, we see the scene where Dr. Arnim Zola cuts off the rest of Bucky's arm when he retrieves him from that ravine he fell into off the train; and, in Iron Man 3, that guy who attacked Iron Man and Pepper got his arm lopped off. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. even cleaned up that little item in their finale.
Mack is also the first to give out any "nick names". He referred to Skye as "Tremors" (she will probably never actually use the name, Quake, other than as a possible code name in an undercover op) when he discovered her in the cell on the ship. And, he called Fitz "Turbo" when Gordon teleported into that pipe that killed him ("Way to go, Turbo!"). Clearly, the character has a big heart and a love for the members of his team. I'm beginning to develop a fan-crush on him.
Next season can't get here soon enough.
- What happened?
- What happened?
- What happened?
- What happened?
Jemma will certainly be coming back... but, as what? Will she be changed? Is that the "device" the Kree used to create the Inhumans in the first place? Is it something else, entirely? She was also the one who contracted that Chitauri virus that was blowing holes in people's heads as it came to a "head". I wonder, since she still has those antibodies she and Fitz developed in her system if that will add to any future stories?
And, unless Elizabeth Henstridge is planning on taking a hiatus from the show for a while, I expect her to be recovered from the stone in the first (or, at the very latest, second) episode of Season 3.
- What is Ridley working on?
- Have we heard the last of the name, "Skye"?
- How will they play Coulson's severed hand?
• Will it be a device? Will Deathlok be jealous (not. serious.)?
• Will they use Dr. Cho's "Cradle" that recreates human tissue?
• Will they get Dr. Strange to magically create him one? Wanda?
• Will they leave it alone and give him a hook? Or, something?
- Will there be a lot of Inhumans in and out of the S.H.I.E.L.D. lineup over the coming season as Daisy builds out her new organization?
• How will that affect her relationship with the rest of the team?
• Will Lincoln become a regular on the show? Is there romance coming?
- Will Fitz get his date with Simmons?
- Will May get back with Andrew? Will it work?
- Will Hunter find his kahunas in his relationship with Bobbi? Will they be back?
- Will we survive FOUR WHOLE MONTHS WONDERING WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO SIMMONS?!?!
Marvel's Agent Carter will be back to give Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. another mid-season break. Look for Part II of Season 3 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to, once again, make a sensational leap in quality as they have time, again, to analyze what they had accomplished and what had not quite worked out in Part I. Thanks for that, Peggy!