Agents of SHIELD 3.17 Review: “The Team”

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Nearly a year of waiting on SHIELD’s “secret” weapon has finally proven fruitful as Daisy and Lincoln form a plan to rescue Coulson, Mack, May, Fitz and Simmons from HYDRA’s grasp. Well, some of a plan. More than 12% of a plan and that’s something.

Calling in the help of YoYo and Joey, we can finally say the Secret Warriors have assembled, and for the newbies it’s a trial by fire.

Secret Warriors…Assemble!

Right from the get-go, the squad shows comradery and excitement to finally take off the training wheels. I’d personally love to see episodes of Joey and YoYo teaming up anytime. It hooked me in and I felt connected to the new members right away.

It’s a riveting intro to the episode, but the action sequence isn’t the meaty of the story. Getting back to the ship, Lucio is there to greet Lincoln and petrifies him. In turn, Joey stabs Lucio in the heart.

While rescuing the core team, they also managed to capture Malick and brought him back to HQ. There have been moments in the last few episodes that represent splinters in the team, mirroring some of the sentiment that seems to have engulfed Captain America: Civil War. Malick waters those seeds of distrust in Coulson and if the trunk of the tree is shaky, so to the branches shall be.

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Trust No One, Especially the Newbs

At the height of everyone giving each other suspicious side-eye, Fitz and Simmons find Malick dead with active grenades placed by his body. Here is where everything gets more interesting. Suddenly, the episode turns into a classic Whodunnit that felt not unlike a round of Clue with everyone having some sort of tie to the killing.

Joey could want out in order to pursue life as a normal person.

YoYo seems to feel like she’s been betrayed.

Lincoln has been feeling the discrimination towards he and his people for a while now. When confronted with evidence in his possession, he strikes back in defense…literally. Because lightning.

Everything is set through an hour of unease. As the viewer, I felt placed in the middle of it all, not knowing who to trust or where to point fingers. It made me retreat to the characters I’ve known for a long time, to reinforce my trust in them. It’s also what made finding out who was really infected that much harder to take.

We learned that while the group was split up during the rescue mission that began this episode, Skye was on her own and was face to face with Hive. She’s the one who was infected, who killed Malick and ultimately caused the team to dissolve.

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Those Who Are Closest Can Hurt You The Most

Skye has been the surrogate for the viewer since the beginning, being exposed to the world of SHIELD just as we were being brought in. When Lincoln learns, you can’t help but feel for the guy, he’s locked up and can’t do anything besides watch her go. Essentially he’s left to plead with a ghost, sort of the way the viewer is made to ask “Why?” to their television screen.

There was something Malick said in this episode that really struck me, “The devil promises everything and let’s you destroy your own world.” Coulson had admitted his need for revenge fueled him to kill Ward, in turn giving a host to Hive. So in his own way, he could feel as if this was the result of a deal he made. Hive has come back and is now taking control of those he loves, all because he fed the beast.

There was a fair amount of faith brought forward in this episode, hopefully Coulson can rally his prophets before it’s too late.

Oh, and PS…that was some nice Infinity War allusion with Fitz and Simmons talking about space. Well done.

Next week’s episode, titled “The Singularity”, shows Fitzsimmons on an undercover mission, and our Secret Warrior leader, Daisy, in league with Hive. The rest of this season is going to be pretty intense!

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