TV Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 Ep. 1

(Marvel Studios 2015)

Summary: Inhumans have begun popping up all over the globe now that the Terrigen strain has been released into the ozone. Phil Coulson, Director of S.H.I.E.L.D., is leading a task force to detain these Inhumans before they unleash unknown catastrophe on the world. However he meets opposition from all sides including the U.S. Military. Things are not the same and this is a tale of a changed people.

 “Laws of Nature”

Directed by Vincent Misiano; Written by Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen

[SPOILERS!!]

Review: Hot. DAMN.

It took three seasons – and a cock-tease of a show called “HEROES” – to finally get fully functioning superpowers on TV. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns full force not only with great action but wonderful character moments from all the main characters (minus a few). It’s with Laws of Nature that the show finally feels like it knows what it is, where it wants to be, and how it’s going to get there. Season 1 was serviceable, season 2 (second half) was stellar, and if this new season can keep the feel of the premiere than season 3looks to be pretty damn amazing.

Things are very different. S.H.I.E.L.D. is still underground, but the forces they tried so hard to keep under wraps last season are very much out in the open. Simmons is nowhere to be found – more on that in a bit – and the team is splintered. May is gone, Ward is at large, Skye Daisy has taken over as field team leader, Bobbie is stuck stationed in the labs, Coulson’s missing half his left arm, and Fitz just can’t take losing his friends anymore.

This is the second time AoS has opened with Fitz alone and Simmons nowhere to be found, but while last time Simmons was away for a mission, this time she’s been swallowed up by the monolith that was so important to the Inhumans last season and is presumed dead. Now, it was probably okay never to believe that they’d go so far as to kill her, but as we saw in the final scene of this latest episode something much more sinister has taken place: she’s been teleported to an entirely other planet.

Perhaps where Attilan currently stationed? I really hope so.

The show also opens up with a new Inhuman being born in the guise of one Joey Gutierrez whose power is to melt metals. The destruction he leaves in his wake as he tries to figure out what he’s become prompts the President to unleash a new task force to specifically detain these newly hatched super beings. S.H.I.E.L.D. has finally met its match as Coulson struggles to find a way to make the world see that they still need his organization. If the President doesn’t think they’re needed, who else is going to listen to him?

I liked Joey a lot, and it was nice to see someone who isn’t stupid, or too emotional for their own good, or only around for one episode before being killed to help explain the dire straits of the situation. We get proper explanations to many things in the same episode they’re asked and so do the characters. It was rather refreshing, and I hope Joey sticks around for the foreseeable future.

It was also great to see Skye Daisy – Really takes some getting use to, doesn’t it? Just me? Okay. – taking on such a leadership role right from the get-go. She’s got her powers under control; she’s got her new life as a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent under control, and her new heritage as an Inhuman under control. Things are really starting to look up for her as a character and she’s genuinely come along way since her original not-very-interesting hacker self in season 1. I’ve been quite impressed with her transition from living in a van breaking the system through computers to living in a secret agency compound breaking the system with her earthquake powers.

And how cool was it when her powers combined with Lincoln’s to take on the new Inhuman threat? Lash as he’s known in the comics had a great introduction and I’m so glad they didn’t beat around the bush on what he looks like and just went straight, full on psycho killer as he took on Mac, Lincoln, and Daisy all at once. Sure he does look kind of like Raina did in her Inhuman form, but hopefully spikes on the head and back isn’t the “default” for completely physically altered Inhumans. That would be a total shame.

There really were a lot of cool things this episode, and it goes to show exactly what this show has become after dredging through the trenches and finding its wings. It’s soaring. Phase 3 of Marvel Studios has arrived, and season 3 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. introduces us to it. Phase 3 is going to be weird. And I so cannot wait.

Final Score: 4.5 KBG Banter Rounds out of 5, it’s good to be back with the Agents.

 And yes, Jessica Jones as well when it arrives Novembers 20th. Stay tuned!

DERRICK-imageDerrick is a born and raised otaku with a love for comics, anime, manga and movies. The full list is pretty long, but that’s just the basics. Stories set in space are his bread and butter.

You can find more of his writing at IndieComix.net

@KazekunForever

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