Episode: “Eye Spy”
Original Airdate: 10-15-13
One thing I realized this week about this show, while I do think that the quality and my enjoyment of the show has been increasing from week to week, there is one thing missing from it that I do think turns a lot of fans off. There is a distinct lack of Marvel in it. This episode gets it right in terms of building the mysteries, developing (most) of the characters, creating an interesting, mysterious, and action packed episode. But it doesn’t feel like we’re dealing with superheroes and aliens here, it feels more like a James Bond spinoff than a Marvel spinoff. And that’s not a bad thing for some people. I’m really enjoying the show for what it is, but aside from a cameo, a couple lines reminding you of other Marvel properties, and the fact that Coulson is a major player in the show, there just isn’t a strong Marvel presence in it. I don’t honestly know if it truly needs that strong of a connection, but I would kind of like to see it come into play a bit more often.
This episode focuses on a previous S.H.I.E.L.D. agent that was trained by Coulson, M.I.A. years ago, and has now popped up as part of a series of diamond heists. It turns out that she is actually being controlled by an unknown person or group through an advanced eye prosthetic. Just like last episode, there is a great through line of not knowing exactly what the whole story is, and the situation changes scene by scene until all the parts finally fall into place, while still leaving a few unexplained mysteries. I really like the fact that they are setting up this currently unknown organization that has highly advanced tech, and multiple layers of secrecy, so much so that there isn’t even a name to this organization just yet. Though honestly, it wouldn’t surprise me if it ended up being tied to the Rising Tide.
There is also some great character dynamics and development. Skye and Coulson are starting to share a bit of a father/daughter bond, Melinda May is quickly becoming a favorite character of mine, right alongside Skye. Ward and Fitz Simmons still have a ways to go as far as their characters are concerned, but a little bit at a time. I’m also quite curious about the frequent teases about Coulson’s return, once again there’s a hint that there’s more to it than meets the eye, as Akela notes that he’s changed, and not just his outlook on life. This time around, there’s not even a Marvel-related teaser pre-credits, though it is a funny little scene involving backscatter glasses and poker. Finally, for the first time, I actually caught this week’s MAOS: Declassified before watching the episode and it’s another fun little treat as you get to see last episode done as a fifth grade diorama. I hope that Brett Erlich gets a spot in the show proper at some point, he is really funny.