So, that happened. Everything that we’ve been building up to on Agents of SHIELD has finally come to a conclusion in a dramatic fashion, changing the nature of the series completely with yet another Winter Soldier-esque twist. Yes, we knew that the Inhumans would play a role in SHIELD (and they haven’t even been officially named on the show) but to see it executed in the way that it did was immensely satisfying and certainly will keep everybody on edge until the return in January, where things look set to get pretty epic indeed.
Even if What They Become may not have been quite a perfect episode (I’ll get to more on the flaws later) it was a damn good one and easily one of the best episodes in the series to date, not just in Season 2. The build-up was handled incredibly well, with the revelation concerning Skye’s real name being finally out of the bag, she is now Daisy Johnson, whose name comic book fans will be familiar with. I’m not too familiar with the character myself, much like the Inhumans, but it’s still great to see something executed pretty well because one of my major problems with comic book shows going forward is that I already know enough about these characters – for example, Cisco and Caitlin in The Flash, to know who they will become. With the Inhumans pretty much anything is up for grabs and it’ll be very interesting to see how SHIELD executes this going forward.
Even though these reveals weren’t especially surprising with the fact that Skye being Daisy Johnson had been called long before this episode, I still enjoyed what I saw here. The build-up was great and having Kyle MacLachlan really deliver in his scene with Skye (should we be calling her Skye or Daisy now?) and it continues to prove that this show is capable of pulling off some excellent casting when it needs to.
This episode was a great one for showcasing just how far Skye has improved since Season 1. Most of the first season was spent with characters delivering speeches about how awesome she was but none of that really felt like it was justified and this episode has pretty much finally redeemed one of the weakest characters on SHIELD. It played out very well and having her shoot Ward was one of the episode’s more interesting moments. Again, with the cat out of the bag concerning Skye being an Inhuman, it’ll be very interesting to see what direction they take this going forward.
On the subject of characters, it turns out, Mack isn’t quite as dead as everyone thought he was last episode. In a typical move commonly found on shows with Joss Whedon’s involvement, they will build up that character and give them depth before killing them off. In this case it was Trip, whose only problem was that he was a little too quick to save Skye. To think that Coulson would have met the same fate as well if he had been a little quicker (and if the show wanted to kill off its lead character),
Not only is Trip dead, but Whitehall as well, which is something that I’m not too happy about. They built Whitehall up to be a pretty sinister villain (and basically the show’s biggest threat) and to kill him off like that was one of the most underwhelming parts of this episode. That’s the same problem that I had with the entirety of Hydra in this episode as well, with them being built up as the team’s major threat only to have them fall into incompetent soldiers come the time for the Inhumans revelation was a real shame and I’m hoping that we won’t have seen the last of this certain organization.
Despite its flaws though, SHIELD’s midseason finale was still a really great hour of television. The build-up to the reveal was handled really well for the most part and certainly looks set to change the momentum of the show once again going forward. What They Become was one of the show’s strongest episodes yet, and there are many interesting routes that the show can take from here.