Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Identity Issues

Photo Credit: ABC/Jennifer Clasen

‘Wake Up’ Plot Summary:

As May (Ming-Na Wen) struggles to escape captivity, S.H.I.E.L.D. takes the offensive against Senator Nadeer (Parminder Nagra) during a special government hearing.

Things are really heating up on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., even without Ghost Rider. Senator Nadeer is getting under S.H.I.E.L.D.’s skin, leading them to attempt to spy on her. That operation goes south quickly and Coulson (Clark Gregg) probably should have known better, but it makes for a good uh-oh moment.

The hearing enlightens us on a few things, like Quake’s (Chloe Bennet) activities while she was “undercover.” While we’re still not getting quite what I want, we might be on the way to more clarity. The biggest question still out there is why Daisy felt she needed to battle the Watchdogs on her own. Perhaps it has something to do with the Sokovia Accords, which the Senator mentions in this episode.

We also learn that S.H.I.E.L.D. has an information leak, nicely tying this storyline into the one with Radcliffe (John Hannah). Man, how far he has fallen. I don’t think there’s any redeeming him at this point. S.H.I.E.L.D. probably won’t have to kill him off like his LMD, but I expect him to spend a long time in prison. It’s similar to May in her mind prison. I totally knew her escape was fake, but I didn’t expect Radcliffe to put her in a simulation of Bahrain. Making May believe she saved the girl is just cruel.

Radcliffe’s cruelty doesn’t stop there. He takes a special joy out of the May Life Model Decoy’s quest for answers. I don’t think the writers intended it, since they probably wrote it beforehand, but the LMD’s confrontation with Radcliffe gives off serious Westworld vibes. I just became a whole lot more invested in the LMD.

Mack’s (Henry Simmons) revelation about his daughter is also tragic. I’m not sure why Mack hid the truth. It does provide a touching moment though. Simmons gives his best performance since his introduction.

So, S.H.I.E.L.D. continues its streak of strong episodes, full of twists and character development. If you’re not watching because Ghost Rider is gone, you’re making a mistake.

RATING: 8 OUT OF 10 (GREAT)

Aaron Sarnecky is The Pop Break’s Television Editor and covers Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., among other things. He is a TV/Film grad of Rowan University and the fraternal twin of staff writer Josh Sarnecky. He probably remembers that show you forgot existed.