(Marvel Studios – 2016)
Ghost Rider Arc – Part 7
Summary: 6 months have past since the events of season 3. SHIELD has been reinstated as an official government agency, but it’s still rebuilding and has a long way to go before it returns to glory. The world, however, believes Coulson dead and so a new Director is in charge. Daisy has left SHIELD and is now a vigilante working to help others while fleeing authorities. All the while a new supernatural entity has entered the ring: the Ghost Rider. This season tells of a family broken a part in need of being pieced back together.
“Deals with Our Devils”
Directed by Jesse Bocho; Written by DJ Doyle
Review: This is probably the most experimental Agents of SHIELD as been since season 1, episode 13 “T.R.A.C.K.S.” which makes since as the two episodes have a lot in common. Both episodes give us multiple perspectives of the same scenes throughout, such as seeing one scene from one person’s perspective, only to turn around and see the same scene from another’s perspective.
Last episode ended with Robbie, Coulson and Fitz all getting blasted into nothing as Eli Morrow emerged from his containment unit with the power to fully form matter out of nothing. That substance which we get to see more of this episode – in deadly fashion – is pure carbon, and looks an awful lot like a solid version of the zero matter we saw in Agent Carter season 2 which is a great way to tie things back to that series.
What’s so great about this episode is in the multiple perspective shots. There are plenty of scenes taking place in our reality where the team of Mack, May, Mace and Daisy come to terms with the loss of their friends while in we see Fitz, Coulson and Robbie deal with their predicament of being phased out of reality. It’s heavily hinted at throughout the episode that the three of them are being drug down into hell and certainly as the story goes on their world – which is mere darkened reflection of our reality – gets darker and gloomier until it culminates in Coulson nearly getting drug down though a portal which we can only assume is literal hell.
The Spirit of Vengeance gets a lot to do in this episode as well as it fights to keep itself from being drug back into hell going even as far as to leave Robbie and possess Mack giving the man of God a taste of the Devil inside him. It seems this experience will stick with Mack for awhile because by the end of the episode the man is clearly broken.
We also get a really cool version of how AoS can do magic without having any magic wielders in the main cast. Having AIDA be the one to read the Darkhold and then marry science with magic in order to create a inter-dimensional portal in order to retrieve Coulson, Fitz and Robbie was a stroke of genius and we even get a hint at the end of the episode as to what could possibly come with AIDA having all the knowledge of the Darkhold indie her artificial mind.
Another great thing was Mace who acts like a really good Director in this episode. I mean, legitimately I believe this is the first time in four seasons that anyone in this show has acknowledged random soldiers dying and that they have families that care for them. I really liked Mace this episode.
We also get some good stuff with Jemma and the Senator’s Inhuman brother who’s been encased in a terrigen cocoon for several months now. It’ll be very interesting to see what comes of that. Though we get Jemma back with the group by the end of the episode, far sooner than I expected, to see Fitz go after Mace like he did once he finds out the Director sent her off somewhere classified was euphoria. I’m so proud of how far Fitz has come as a character in these last few seasons.
My biggest complaint of the episode is that majority of the actors this time around seemed to be really hamming it up in their performances and a lot of it very awkward more-so than urgent. Especially with May. When she’s forced to show a lot of emotion I feel she has trouble doing so because Ming Na-Wen (who is a brilliant actress) spent most of the early seasons being one-note and consistently serious. Which was her character but she’s been given more and more emotional scenes in these more recent seasons and I feel like it’s been hard for her.
Deals with Our Devils is a really fun episode and adds a lot of lore to the MCU. It gives the Spirit of Vengeance an actual character role and I hope we get to see a lot more of his side of the MCU either in a spin-off series or later in the season next year. Ghost Rider has been an amazing addition to this season and overall been used in a great way as well.
Please people, watch Agents of SHIELD.
Final Score: 4 Souls Trapped in the Upside Down out of 5
Derrick 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