THAT…was a very different kind of Agents of Shield episode, and that’s a good thing. “Love in the Time of Hydra” brought back characters that weren’t in the spotlight since the mid-season finale, all the while bringing in new characters to set up a big clash for next weeks episode.
I love the return of Ward, he’s a character with so many levels it’s almost ridiculous…almost. Yet the way he is able to adapt to just about every situation thrown at him is amazing. Take this episode, you have an emotionally unstable Agent 33, one that could be a liability. And instead of getting rid of her, he helps her free herself from her “curse”, and gains a loyal team-member in the process. All the while being “true” to himself.
You almost have to wonder where the “truth” and “lies” are with Ward anymore. Cause you could tell he wanted to be with Skye after 33 transformed into her, yet you could hear his disappointment when he recalled HOW SHE SHOT HIM!!! “I’m not insane”.
Jury is still out on that one to be fair.
Their infiltration of Talbot’s operation led to some fun hijinx, not the least of which was Talbot showing off some fun personality quirks. Including how he treats some of his lesser officers. I love how he admitted that he was going to be sucking up to his wife for awhile after pulling a gun on her. You almost felt bad for him…almost.
Skye’s story was a little more subdued, but it was fun. Her being compared to an Avenger was very foreshadowing, especially when she later got the first part of her “Quake Gauntlets” that she’ll no doubt receive in the future. What really made these scenes shine were the uses of Fitz, Simmons, and Coulson as her situation was evaluated. The new dynamic between Fitz and Simmons is great, and I love it. Even though I don’t like Simmons in her “powers are evil’ mode. Her shouting “well then I hope I can fix her” was great. As it told how even though Skye is still her friend, she fears her greatly.
Coulson and the scene in the cabin was great. Coulson has clearly been struggling with what to do with Skye, as it is very much a duty/friendship kind of thing going on. His scenes with May both before and after Sky’s “detainment” were spot on to these feelings.
And then there’s “The Real Shield”. I’ll admit, I didn’t know what to expect with this, as I didn’t know who or what would claim to be “The Real Shield”. Then we met the people…then we saw they were on a supercarrier…and everything started to fall into places. Seeing Bobbi and Hunter talk about what was real and what was fake was nice, as their relationship has been a key focus in the last number of episode. Hunter begging Bobbi to leave with him was spot on, as he does love her, he just doesn’t love the lies.
The real question here is, how will this story end? There’s a conflict coming, we know that. And “The Real Shield” has a bunch of firepower under their belts. Even if Coulson beats them, or somehow converts them, what then?
In the end, “Love in the Time of Hydra” was a fulfilling episode that put many pieces back on the chessboard. It’s still unclear where certain things are going to go. But it will be exciting to watch and find out.