Original Airdate: 5-6-14
Gearing up to the season finale next week and the show decides to actually slow things down a little bit and take a look into Ward’s past and his relationship with Garrett. While I didn’t really care too much for almost any of the flashback scenes, there were still enough fun to be had in Coulson’s team and with Rayna to keep me interested in this episode throughout and from the look of things, it has the season finale ready to go out with a big bang even if it doesn’t seem likely that they’ll be making the gravitron callback this season, instead saving it for a second season which is still up in the air as far as I can tell.
The main thing that I didn’t like about Ward & Garrett’s backstory is that Garrett treated Ward exactly the same way that his older brother did, but instead of forcing him to beat up & torture his younger brother, he forced him to get rid of those closest to him, but it was done in such a short amount of screentime that it never really felt like anything akin to brainwashing. The intent was to help explain the strength of their relationship and their long years together, but I felt like it actually weakened it as nothing that Garrett did with Ward felt like it was fostering a sense of trust and instead it fostered a sense of distrust, even going so far as having him say “Don’t trust anyone, especially me.”
Aside from the flashbacks and the reveal that Garrett was Deathlok mark 1, I did quite enjoy the rest of the episode. Once again, Fitz gets a brief chance to shine towards the end of the episode. I did have another brief problem with the fact that Cybertech keeps all of its records on hard copies rather than as electronic data even if it was only so that they wouldn’t have a computer for Skye’s USB port and for a couple jokes, which I did think were funny. I also quite liked the suitcase full of classic spy stuff as well as the bit of comeraderie between Coulson and Triplett geeking out over them. All in all, it was a mixed bag, but in the end it did set things up for what should be a very exciting and interesting season finale which I hope is not a series finale.