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Agents of SHIELD, you disappoint me

The first episode of AGENTS OF SHIELD was passable but the followup was downright boring. For one thing, the rebels coming out of the jungle with their machine guns? Dull. If you want me to give a shit about the rebels, they need to be capturing one of the team, hopefully someone that matters. Even better, one of the bad guy soldiers so there’s actual conflict regarding the Mysterious Device. Making it about a coup in a country we don’t know anything about is boring.

But I’m sure the jungle set was limited and the plane set was already there, so they moved the action into the bottle.

Anyway, Coulson continues to be fun and interesting (Note: when punched in the face he bled red blood, so I’m losing hope that he’ll become the Vision).

Here’s a list of things I’m already over:

    Ward insisting he’s a solo operative who blah blah blah.
    May’s secret past and her unwillingness to kung fu a bunch of people even though she totally does.
    Science geeks enthusing about science.
    Anything regarding team dynamics.
    Skye and her secret group.
    The make-believe that Coulson is fooled by Skye’s willingness to work with him. Is there anyone who doesn’t recognize that he’s using her to expose and ruin Rising Tide?
    Destroying powerful resources that would be useful in the next alien invasion, like, say, launching a death ray into the sun.

Things I want more of:

    Conflicts that direct outward. When the stakes of a show are high I don’t want to see squabbling. Fire the squabblers and bring in new people.
    People with superpowers. Pilot ep, yay. Weird device in the second ep, boo.
    A sense of actual changes to the world in the wake of an alien invasion. Politics. Culture. Show me what’s changed.
    Characters from the Marvel Comics setting.

About that last thing: I realize that Whedon has said he’s not going to turn the show into an Easter Egg hunt for fans of the comics. And he’s right not to do that. You don’t build a successful TV show by driving fan discussion into obscure trivia. If your Twitter hashtags are full of people talking about how some minor character in the second act is Jonathon Hart who would later become Jack of Hearts, you’re not getting a second season.

However, that doesn’t mean the show should use generic death rays and villains cribbed from the Marvel U movies. The comics are full of wacky, interesting ideas from five decades. Many of them aren’t appropriate for this setting and many can’t be done in a TV budget, but for god’s sake rummage around in that treasure chest and pull out something good because death rays and South American coups are not making full use of the property and it’s not going to cut it.

Mirrored from Twenty Palaces. You can comment here but not there.



( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 5th, 2013 12:49 am (UTC)
I see a distinct advantage to shooting anything associated with the cosmic cube into the sun: It keeps super powerful aliens who want a cosmic cube from sniffing around.
Oct. 5th, 2013 06:10 am (UTC)
Well, it's repurposed Hydra technology, supposedly, so there has to be more of it around the world. If they were certain it was the very last of them, sure. If not, they'd be better off making two hundred and mounting them on the Helicarrier.
Oct. 5th, 2013 02:05 am (UTC)
I enjoyed it more than the pilot, actually. I don't think I want more superheros; I'd really like less. Mainly, though, I want to avoid it being an X-Files-type show.

The rebel attack was dumb and annoyed me a lot.
Oct. 5th, 2013 06:11 am (UTC)
Well, I thought the premise was unpowered law enforcement in a world of growing superpowers. That's the concept that sent me out to Radio Shack to buy a TV antenna so I could watch commercial TV again, for the first time in ten years.
Oct. 5th, 2013 06:03 am (UTC)
I'm lukewarm on AoS. I liked the superhero storyline of the first episode but found the writing/voice of the entire thing to be Way Too Joss. So that left me prefering the second episode because it had a little less of that flavour, namely Fitz/Simmons being at least comprehensible.

I'm right there with you on the things you're already over. I'm also already over Ward in general, nevermind just the I'm The Do It Myself Guy thing. And I will be downright disgusted if they go down the Skye/Ward romance road.

I *am* interested in how they play out the dynamics of Marvel TVverse fitting into Marvel Movieverse. It's clear the events of the movies have happened and (to, as you point out, an insufficient degree) influence the TV show, but I'm expecting that (with the exception of Explaining Coulson) the Movieverse will largely ignore the events of the TV show. I kind of expect a single throw-away line of acknowledgement in any given movie, but by and large I don't expect the show to influence the film. So I'm interested in seeing if I'm right. :)

Also, I can't help assuming all the Slingshot material is actually being tucked into Area 51 (or the moral equivalent thereof) and not actually shot into the sun, but I suppose if I'm right that could too heavily influence the movies, so maybe not.
Oct. 5th, 2013 06:22 am (UTC)
The nice thing about TV is that, with so many episodes, they can retcon dumb decisions. Well, most of them, anyway.

As for me, I think Skye and Ward could be good together but I'm not convinced by the actors yet and they'll have to do something actually surprising for it to work. I mean, genuinely surprising.

As for Fitz/Simmons being incomprehensible, I prefer it to the sciencey nonsense dialog most shows use. But that's me.
Oct. 5th, 2013 07:35 am (UTC)
There was a moment in the first episode when I thought Fitz/Simmons' incomprehensibility was going to be a running gag throughout the entire show, which actually would have been fine, if we'd never understood a word they said, but it became clear to me that that wasn't the gig at all, and that it was just Joss Quirkiness.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )