Agents of SHIELD 4.08 Review: “The Laws of Inferno Dynamics”
With ‘The Laws of Inferno Dynamics,’ Agents of SHIELD’s season heads to winter break in a big way. Not only did we get some romance and closure, but a welcome home and a whole lot of action.
It’s a Team Effort
Teamwork isn’t just a nice lesson to learn through example, it’s also what works best on AoS. When every gear is in motion each mission tends to go smoother. Luckily for us, out of the gates we got to see the whole team working as a unit.
When working on their focuses, but together towards a common goal, they’re a well-oiled machine. The problem is, there’s still a division in trust. Everyone keeps asking if the seismic activity occurring throughout the story is Daisy, (spoiler alert: it’s not.) Director Mace also points out that while he may have been up to some shady dealings, the team doesn’t trust that it’s for the right reasons. Frankly, I still don’t trust him. I’m not sure of what it is exactly, but my gut still says, “Keep your distance.”
Science Squad Saves the Day!
While Coulson and Mace come to a mutual understanding of each other, Fitz and Simmons were working out how Eli’s powers work. Over the course of this season, and sorry Doctor, it’s been made clear that Fitz is no fan of magic. Every mention that it could be the result magic, or just that it may go unexplained, the science hat goes on.
Fitz refuses to believe that they’re isn’t an educated explanation for what’s happening with Eli. He knows that it may appear that Eli’s pulling matter from nothing, there still needs to be an origin point. Originally I kind of thought he was just being stubborn until figured out that if he could be sent into another realm, perhaps that’s where Eli’s pulling from.
You Get What You Earn
Eli’s powers have strengthened as he works his way through creating the Periodic Table. Along with carbon, he can now form diamonds before going supervillain by creating plutonium. After he’s confronted by Robbie, he traps him in in a cell he’s built up around a demon core. (Here’s some more information on the history of the real-life demon core.)
While Robbie is trapped, Eli reveals that his whole plot was retribution. He clawed his way to be a success from a young age. Teachers and peers always doubting his abilities, accusing him of cheating his way through and being a fraud. He was always looked down upon because of his roots, and that’s when I couldn’t help but feel some empathy for him.
Granted, he’s still a baddie. It’s just hard to say that his emotional reaction to what had happened to him his whole life was wrong. When Coulson tells him that his power is actually stealing from elsewhere, as opposed to creating from nothing, I understand his reaction. It’s a personal journey Eli has been on, for better or worse, and ultimately I do bad for the guy.
“All Teams Go Hot!”
As Coulson’s confrontation of Eli forces Plan B, it appears that a straight-forward beat em up sequence is coming our way. Boy, am I glad it went the opposite direction. After first moves are made by Mack and May on Eli’s men, Yo-Yo gets her best display of the season.
Repositioning Mack’s axe into shotgun mode, placing a henchman’s gun into Coulson’s hand, placing a magnet upon Eli’s chest. It was like she got her own Quicksilver (X-Men movies version) moment. Once she snaps back and time catches up, Eli’s men go down and he’s thrown into the cell next to Robbie. I absolutely adored that moment and was so happy to see Yo-Yo get her superstar moment.
Speaking of things going hot, Mack finally kissed Yo-Yo. After all this time waiting, and her completely understandable intent to leave, he bucked up and they both got what they wanted. This leaves open Mack’s tease from the last episode, what’s in the photo that will come to haunt him in the upcoming back end of the season? Only time will tell.
Good-Bye Rider…For Now
Unfortunately, one of the strongest points of the season said farewell tonight. As Eli is about to escape, because the magnet plan definitely had its flaws, Robbie and the Spirit of Vengeance decide to sacrifice themselves to finish their own mission.
Daisy, now back on the team, asks Coulson if he really thinks Robbie will come back. When Coulson responded with, “The other Ghost Rider did,” my face melted. We’ve had allusions to Johnny Blaze but this is the official confirmation, albeit without the alter ego name-drop, that we’ve been waiting for. Plus, it makes it clear that this won’t be the last time we see Robbie…or his skull.
Do Robots Dream of Electric Sheep?
Aida’s story has been building this entire season. After her, let’s say “awakening” last week, she’s clearly got something up her sleeve. Daisy points out at one point that she’s “So human,” to which Aida responds “Thank you, I’m learning.”
If that doesn’t give you a cold chill, you’re probably an LMD and I no longer trust you. Anyway, she’s clearly gaining knowledge on what it means to “be human,” and it’s pretty clear that it’s not a good thing. Like all good Marvel lore, the post credits scene in this Agents of SHIELD episode is a massive reveal.
Mace has told Radcliffe that he’s sent Agent Nathanson to retrieve all of his work on Aida to bring into headquarters. While gathering everything, he sees a door open up and we learn that May is unconscious, being kept alive. The May that Coulson finally cracks open his celebratory bottle with isn’t the one we all know and love. This one is Aida’s (I’m presuming) own creation. LMDs are now creating their own LMDs and flashes of Ultron hit hard.
What does all this mean for the real May? For the rest of the team? We’ll find out when Agents of SHIELD: LMD kicks off.
I’m extremely happy that for season four we’re essentially getting two mini seasons in one. I’ve been pretty vocal about my opinion on how long network seasons feel after being spoiled with concise eight-to-thirteen episode seasons on cable and streaming services. This allows for the pacing of the show to rev up, and more importantly keep its focus where it needs to be. With all that said, I can’t wait to see what’s coming in 2017.