Wow! So where do I begin…
As we previewed last week, Patton Oswalt returned to AOS this week as the multiple Koening brothers. The brothers are always extremely entertaining and it was a welcomed return. Surprisingly (again), this episode did not just rely on the guest star to provide all the excitement and entertainment, but it moved through the story line. Not only that, but Hot Potato Soup dove right into the feels with May (android) and Coulson and Fitz and Radcliffe (android).
The episode itself centered around the real Radcliffe and his quest to find the Darkhold. He has apparently teamed up not only with Senator Nadeer, but a Russian tough guy, Anton Ivanov, who seems to be funding Nadeer and the Watchdogs. Coulson had the brilliant idea to use the Koenigs to make the Darkhold disappear instead of just destroying it, but when Billy Koenig gets kidnapped by said Russian tough guy, the location of the Darkhold is ultimately revealed along with FINALLY a bit of who the Koenigs are. Complete with the reveal of a sister! LT Koenig, played by Artemis Pebdani (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) is the eldest of the Koenig kids, and actually turns out is the one who recruited her brothers into SHIELD to begin with.
Meanwhile, FitzSimmons and Mack are at the lab trying to break down android Radcliffe to find out where the real Radcliffe is and what he’s up to. This whole plot of the story really just served as a backstory for Ftiz as we find out about his deadbeat Dad who left him and his mom. They also touch on the fact that Fitz has consistently gotten betrayed throughout his life, but it has not hardened his character or made him any less of the great person that he is. This whole scene was extremely touching. We often miss out on the minor characters and their story lines in the process of moving along the major plot, but I find Fitz, and Simmons for that matter, essential to the team and it is refreshing to have time dedicated to them. Last week, when we found out about Mack’s daughter was also like this and it really reminds the audience of how human these characters are.
Speaking of humans, there was a moment between Mack and android Radcliffe that really was quite profound and existential where they briefly discussed what a soul is and whether or not an android can have one. It was something that android May was struggling with and especially at the end when the team finds out about her true identity you can see the pain in her eyes as she tries to defend her validity as a person. However, while the revelation of android May has been a longtime coming, it felt a bit anti-climatic, even with the kiss.
Perhaps it was Coulson’s lack of emotional response, probably from shock and from being a level-headed agent, or it was Simmons miraculously knowing it was May who was the LMD without much reasoning. OR it was Daisy just off-handedly blowing android May away with her earthquake powers while casually saying “so May’s a robot?” There was just something missing about her reveal that made it less than it should have been.
Moving forward now, Radcliffe with the Darkhold and his teaming up with Anton Ivanov, the Superior (Zach McGowan – Black Sails), things have gotten more interesting, if that’s at all possible.
GEEK Grade: B+
Next episode surely will be spent trying to retrieve the real May, and hopefully the team can gain some upper hand on Radcliffe who has seemed to be one step ahead this entire time.
What do you guys think of how the storyline is progressing? Does Coulson being at the top of Anton’s hit list surprise anyone? Let us know and stay tuned next week for the next episode and review!
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D airs at 10PM on Tuesdays on ABC.
Director: Nina Lopez-Corrado
Writer: Craig Titley