Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1 Review “The Asset”

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D Episode 3 The Asset (2)

After two solid episodes to establish the show and the characters, Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD returned tonight with the very entertaining installment “The Asset”. Skye gets to go all Dollhouse, Coulson gets back out into the action, and a new Marvel super villain is born! It was quite an exciting episode, so let’s get into it!

Tonight’s episode revolved mostly around Skye doing her first big solo assignment, as she’s tasked with infiltrating a party thrown by billionaire researcher and philanthropist Ian Quinn, played by Ghost Whisperer‘s David Conrad. The reasoning for why Skye had to be the one sent in to Quinn’s party was flimsy at best. So SHIELD felt…uncomfortable with breaking international law? So instead they send her in on their behalf wearing one of their earpieces, then they have Coulson and Ward storm the beach to infiltrate from the back entrance. So…how is that not breaking international law? Surely it would have been smarter to send a more experienced agent in to the party, so the reasoning here felt a little too goofy for me.

However, I am liking that Skye is not giving up her ties with The Rising Tide. While her little written message to Quinn turned out to be a hoax in the end, it certainly looked like she really was considering his offer. While it seems obvious that Skye will eventually choose to give up on The Rising Tide eventually and join with SHIELD for real, I’m glad that they aren’t making this a quick and easy decision for her.

Dr. Franklin Hall was the asset that was taken in the very cool opening scene, and he was played by Ian Hart (Professor Quirrell from Harry Potter!) As soon as “Dr. Franklin Hall” and “Gravitonium” were mentioned, I’m sure many Marvel fans like myself started geeking out immediately knowing what was coming next. The final scene did give us a little confirmation that Graviton is alive in well inside that glob, so I hope we’ll see him again soon.

Between Quinn and Dr. Franklin Hall this evening, we got two pretty strong arguments for why SHIELD might not be the great organization that they claim to be. I mean, Hall did make a pretty great point. Their quest for renewable energy did cause an alien invasion that devastated one of the largest American cities, and some of their other decisions have been less than noble (such as Coulson deciding to kill Hall), so I hope we get to see more of SHIELDs darker side as the series goes on.

Oh, and I know we’re only three episodes in, but I’m already a little annoyed with Melinda May’s deadpan delivery of every single thing she says. I’m glad that she’ll be joining the combat crew full time now, because her complaining was getting to me.

I think people need to temper their expectations of SHIELD. On one hand, this is a Joss Whedon show, so everybody expects it to have lovable characters and a lot of heart and genuine, emotional storylines. On the other hand, it’s a Marvel show, so everybody wants it to include characters and themes from the greater Marvel Universe, but also not be too niche with their references. I mean, Graviton was a bit of a stretch for most people, and I’m sure many viewers won’t even make that connection. It’s true that “The Asset” is only the third episode in the series, so I do hope that most people do stick around to hopefully see their least favorite parts of the series fade away. Keep in mind that even series like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel weren’t exactly incredible from the get-go, so be patient! For now, just enjoy this immensely entertaining and exciting show, and the rest will hopefully come together soon.

Random Thoughts:

– It made me laugh that Agent Coulson wore his full three piece suit in the boat. Surely that’s not the most practical thing to wear on the beach!

– Fitz sheepishly saying “boobs” was the biggest laugh I’ve had on this series so far.

– Was this the first time that they’ve actually said “The Avengers” on screen on this show? If so, I’m surprised they were able to show that much restraint!