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March 11 2014

Discuss this week's new Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode. "Yes Men" was written by Shalisha Francis and directed by John Terlesky. Lady Sif from Thor is in this one.

Elena Satine as Lorelei makes we want to see her sister Amora the Enchantress played by Amber Benson.
Bikers. Kind of an army.
THAT is an entrance.
Got chills from the bifrost beam.
"Elena Satine as Lorelei makes we want to see her sister Amora the Enchantress played by Amber Benson."

You're trying to kill me?
"Which is why I want him to hear it from me..." Thus, it can be explained in the next movie! :D
ICErs. Nice name.

Also, great exchange of back slaps. :)
Well, she's got the 'Loyalty' thing working!
I heard a bone snap!
Aaaand she has Ward.
I'm liking Sif in this more then I thought.

Poor Ward, he's so easy.
Well then. What happens in Vegas... ;)
OOOOOOOooooooooo. Coulson, lays down the deal. Simmons gave it a good shot.
"Well then. What happens in Vegas... ;)"

She's gonna snap chunks of him off.
Dear B_b, I ♥ May.
Goooooood thing Lady Sif is Asgaerdian! Whooooosh.
Now it's personal.
Pow! Xing! Bam! oomff!
I thought it was the best episode yet
Odin ordered her back alive! Starts speculating about Loki's plans.
Fitz, I mean. Or Neo-Giles, is it?
"Starts speculating about Loki's plans."

Hustler does not need any help plotting porn parody's, sparky!
That was a painfully unexpected end.
I was so hoping for a Tom Hiddleton cameo at the end of this. Taking her home to "Odin" indeed.
Still, the explanation he gave her isn't enough. She knows it's "alien," but she doesn't know it is extracted from an alien. There are moral issues here, as well as the potential for having to deal with half-Smurf's frostfolks.

And twist...

Does this mean there is no new episode next week? Do they want the show to tank as it gets more Whedony?

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2014-03-12 02:07 ]
Ok. I was a bit worried they were just going to sail past the guards from last episode. But it seems that Coulson feels their deaths where important. Maybe not in a way I'd like.. but whatever. And Melinda May? Holy smoly!!

I haven't seen the Thor sequel yet and I know that Thor speaks with extra... I don't know what to call it... but her lines were a bit cringe worthy for me. But I liked her kicking ass. I mean, when is that not fun?
Amazing episode tonight.Prpbably my favorite so far and what twist with the tag in regards to May.Can't wait to see where this goes.

Nebula1400,yes it sounds like no new episode next week.Instead with get the Marvel special.

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2014-03-12 02:07 ]
I'm so so glad those guards were acknowledged twice. I'm still cringing from their slaughter, esp when they could have carried them out and resurrected them with goo.

Poor guys, I guess they are martyrs sort of.

I enjoyed this ep. I was nervous Sif would fall flat but she is easily my fav guest character. She had a great vibe with the team and her Asgardian speak was well executed to my unexpert ears.

The bus is hitting a dark stretch and I'm liking it. Is there really no new ep next week? What's going on?
So Coulson has completely flipped. He talks about the 2 dead guards as though their death weren't his fault and then he chooses to leave S.H.I.E.L.D behind as he and Skye go off to do who know what.This is not the Agent Coulson we knew before.

And I loved Lady Sif calling him Agent son of Coul
Another great episode. This show is really building up some momentum!

Time for another break.

Oh well. Next week's special will probably get lots of eyeballs because of the previews of the upcoming movies, so hopefully they'll also use it to plug the hell out of AoS.
What was it Coulson said to Skye when she asked "Where do we start?" or was it "Who do we start with?" I couldn't quite make out his answer.
"The bus is hitting a dark stretch and I'm liking it."

Ooo, good line.
I really liked this one! Oh no that end tag.

barboo, he said something along the lines of "the person responsible for this, to get some answers."
Did it say when it comes back?
He did say "The person responsible for this..." then he gestured to her gunshot stomach, then he said "and make him pay."
So does he mean the clairvoyant or Fury?
Ah, missed the stomach gesture. Yes, Willowy's version. I did think he meant Ian Quinn.
Ah. I thought he actually named someone. Well I'm glad that Skye noticed that the alien serum saved her life, even if it is weird, something that Coulson keeps seeming to overlook in his freakout state. And I guess the Marvel special next week is better than nothing but damnit, I want to get some answers! And how can Fury go off-grid? He runs SHIELD. If he's not there to give orders, whose running the show?
"I'm not saying you were weak. I'm saying all men are weak." Simmonsisms don't suck.
Fun episode. I didn't check the clock once. My favorite bit was May getting the confirmation that Ward was no longer under Lorelei's spell and promptly punching him in the face.
Would you be appalled if you knew that you were resurrected by cannibalizing another being? Coulson hasn't said anything about it, but seeing a half-being being torn apart bit by bit might be a factor in his being not OK with it.
Great episode, loved the ending. I think Agent May is taking direct orders from Nick Fury. And I have to agree with you Nebula1400, Simmons has some of the best lines.
Quick question now, thoughts later:

Do we know what race The Other is? Because he's blue.
For those asking, after the Marvel special next week there's a repeat of T.R.A.C.K.S. the following week. No official date for the next episode yet but it's reasonably safe to assume it'll be April 1st which will make the next episode the one they'll show at Paleyfest which I hear will be epic (if anyone is considering going to the AoS panel at Paleyfest you should just go ahead and grab a ticket!)
I have a strong feeling that the blue alien guy was Kree, since Sif mentioned him, maybe Marvel Studios has the TV rights for them, not sure about the movie rights. It would be pretty cool if it turned out Skye was half Kree and that shot activated he latent powers or whatever. We'd have an incarnation of Ms. Marvel on our hands, perhaps without a lot of expensive superpowers.

[ edited by Boto on 2014-03-12 07:06 ]
Fury is off the grid, Melinda is reporting back on Coulson yep they are working together. Really can't wait for the rest of the season to play out and for Captain America 2. Everything is connected.

[ edited by viewingfigures on 2014-04-11 21:04 ]
Man, sometimes I really feel like I'm watching a completely different show to the rest of you guys!

I thought this ep was a massive let down. More clichéd and "paint-by-numbers" writing. No real depth given to the guest characters. A very predictable plot you've seen a thousand times before, with no ounce of subversion or a new take on it. Really bad fight choreography between Sif and Lorelei. These are meant to be two Asgardian's going at it! The Ward/May fight looked more brutal.

And the show is starting to feel/look cheap. Every time one of the Asgardians showed their strength it looked really bad; they go to Vegas! Only for everyone to be back on the Bus two minutes later. :/
I KNEW IT. May was too good to be true. Why the hell was she mother henning Coulson? TO GET INFO! She's a Fury Mole. Keep tabs on Coulson, keep him from dying again and ruining my work and update me if he finds out.

This both excites me and angers me and fills me with glee. :D I like the idea that someone in the 'family' is a plant. She forced Phil to tell Skye so that she can find out if "he knows".

Ward having feelings for someone? Look I know the obvious choice is Skye, glaring at you obvious. But I've always felt Ward strangely softens around Simmons. I'd be more interested to see something happening there. It will also force Fitz to grow a pair.

Coulson rebelling? Honestly not a surprise. It was bound to happen after Fury destroyed his cards.

I like the little tidbit about Sif not telling Thor. Keeping the juice for A2 maybe? But, is Coulson still covering for Fury or does he just want to surprise Thor with the Son of Col's resurrection? Guessing the first.

Ooooh "Odin" wants her alive :D whatever *cough*Odin*cough* is planning with his new rule, Lorelei's powers could be helpful.

9/10 stars show! Keep on raising the bar.

[ edited by Mirage on 2014-03-12 10:59 ]
If this show fails at this point, I'm putting the blame squarely on ABC's idiotic scheduling.

No show can succeed when it's only on about 20% of the time during random weeks.
Yeah, woman whose superpower is controlling men. Not my thing. This one was pretty far down my list. But if you know that's her power, and SHIELD is such a big organization, why don't you only send in straight female agents? Or maybe gay male ones (not sure what works with her, and they certainly didn't explain it.) They were just asking for trouble.
"Or maybe gay male ones (not sure what works with her, and they certainly didn't explain it.)"

Orientation was irrelevant. They made it clear that the spell made men's desire shift to Lorelai. It even established their personality, traits, et al. doesn't actually change. They'd just be gay men who went all Bob and Rose on Lorelai.
I certainly got the impression that Lorelei's power works on all men regardless of sexual orientation... and does not work on any women, regardless of sexual orientation.

Maybe it's determined by pH balances, or the ability to wrap a Christmas package neatly, or that sarcastic side-to-side head bob thing that only women and Jim Carrey can do.
Or maybe it's the male's 'y' chromosome that makes them weak and susceptible to Lorelei's powers. :P
It's based on magic. They called it sorcery.

It is a spell that works on men. It's not some sort of power based on physical attributes beyond the aural and physical attributes used to initiate the spell.

That's why orientation is irrelevant. It's not, say, a Queen Bee-esque pheromone power. It's a supernatural ability that works on men, but doesn't go to the same extent as, say, Billy's latent misogyny vibe. Ward and Fitz WEREN'T different people; they were themselves, except if they were prioritizing Lorelai. A gay man would still be attracted to other men, he'd just happen to prioritize Lorelai. Ward could even resist Lorelai's spell briefly, despite being the only sexually active heterosexual male on the cast.

It seemed pretty clear to me. Though I would also put my vote in for the catalyst for vulnerability being the inability to do said majestic head-bob.
Andrew. As frustrating as it is, other shows have survived idiotic scheduling in the past. It hurts the ratings but don't think ABC doesn't expect ratings to drop after a break, they've been doing this long enough to know it'll happen, I'm sure that is factored into their decision making process. It's not just ABC that has this insane scheduling either.
Fun episode - if they can maintain this level of general wit / plot twists the rest of the season I'm a happy camper...

... Provided I'm allowed to watch the rest of the season on something resembling a regular schedule. I knew about next week's Marvel special, but the news about the week after being a repeat truly moves us into WTF ground
One thing that bothered me about the episode is when Coulson is in the science bay, waiting to roll out and Lady Sif does the fancy jump from the railing above and he's all smug. This felt like a moment where in the movies there would've been a "stating the obvious" line like "Asgardians are so cool, aren't they?" from him. Something that points at the obviously corny but still kinda cool thing and says "we know, but it's just sooo cool!"

Anybody with me or am I crazy?
These scheduling problems will go away in a few years when the networks finally embrace the 21st century and get rid of timeslots altogether, moving exclusively to on-demand format.
Now after this episode I'm having more problem with the killed guards than I did after last week's episode ended. Mostly because I thought there would be more to it. I know Couson mentioned them twice, and with obvious unhappy emotions about it. But. They went out of their way in this episode to show the 'night night' guns. (What are they called now? Icers. That's cool. Ha. Cool. See what I did there?) So knowing that they had plenty non lethal and now one ounce lighter guns on the bus it's strange no one called Coulson out on not using them at the time they were prepping for the invasion of the med facility, or afterwards knowing two guard were killed.

I can only think of one reason why the decision was made to go lethal: Coulson didn't want witnesses. If they wanted the guards deaths to be an unforseen consequence to eat at him later they could have had them grab icers (yeah, I like that better) but have the countdown make it impossible to carry them out. That gives guilt but not make some of us scratch our heads as they why they weren't used in the first place. Or have Paxton's character be the one that made the order to cut the guards lose and Couson have further conflict with SHIELD itself. So. No witnesses is all I can fathom as a logical reason for Coulson not giving them the order for non lethal weapons as first option.

Maybe it will still be played out later, but it doesn't seem like anyone on the team is all that worried about their actions at the med cave.
D-e-f It was all in Coulson's face!

NYPinTA I understand your point, but one thing you haven't considered is that real (vs ICERs)guns don't just put holes in people, didn't they use the weapons to shoot at things too? I could be wrong, I'd have to go back and watch. You could then argue that they could have taken both, but that would have also led to confusion on split second decision making. They were also going into a very much unknown situation last week, they didn't know what crazy tech or enhanced "people" they might encounter. This week they knew exactly what they were going up against, and that was primarily loads of civilians.
What's the difference between dead or unconcious if all you want it for the other person to not be able to attack you? Both have the same result. Guns don't make one's aim better, so they aren't required just because you are going up against someone trained, versus this week when they were going up against civilians. So, there is no downside to using a non lethal option that I can see.
But they don't know that they were JUST going up against someone "trained" for all they know they'd be going up against a bunch of zombies who's brains had been messed with like Coulson's who were brought back from being killed a dozen times and implanted with a new much more potent strain of Centipede... they don't KNOW what they were going to be up against, this is the facility where they brought someone back who'd been dead for days, this is completely unknown territory. How would they know the ICERs would work on what they might face? Not even remotely similar in nature to the situation in this week's ep.
They were going into some sort of secret SHIELD affiliated facility. I think they expected to go up against some well trained people who are SHIELD or something similar. Last week's episode didn't track at all for me compared to other episodes. They were suddenly very willing to engage in probable friendly fire with lethal force. And Coulson trying to use those deaths this week as a reason Skye should follow his lead? Nope. Crazy troll logic.
And it was a facility that Coulson knew Fury had taken him too. So even if it isn't SHIELD friendly, it was Fury friendly. And Coulson met one of the doctors that was there. So there was no reason to consider they were walking into something so different that anything other than humans or technology would be involved as an obstacle.

I get that the icers are a new technology for SHIELD and that Coulson, Ward, and May were not trained with them as an option so using something non leathal might not be automatic. But it's just telling that they went to great lengths to give the guards their moment and then this episode took so long with the icers. It just makes the oddness of the decision to go in hot (that's a technical term BTW. Oooh. Hot means lethal and Icer means not. Hal.) stand out a bit more.
I like that. Ice is nice! Er. Hot is very not.
Loved the episode. I cheered and laughed out loud. I adore Alexander so I knew I would. Lots of reveals and the actual sharing of information between Coulson and Skye is a nice change of pace from the usual trope of everyone keeping everything super secret until it blows up in a disaster situation.
So I guess the Ward/May thing is over. Tough way to end a relationship.
I think maybe the flaw in the writing is not that they went in shooting with live ammo, but that the rational for excluding icers wasn't spelled out. Icers were never going to be left on the table as a viable option. They had to be disqualified - whatever the reason. The whole reason we have icers, tranq guns, phasers on stun, etc. is to allow the thrill of an action sequence minus any actual real world consequences. This was all about consequence - the guards or Skye. Coulson traded their lives for hers. I don't think he's the one who's immediately going to feel the negatives to that trade - on balance, I think he'd do it again every time, but at some point in the future, I do believe he'll be confronted by someone (maybe Fury, maybe someone else) who feels the other side to that decision.
So I guess the Ward/May thing is over. Tough way to end a relationship.

I'm actually more concerned about the Coulson/May thing being over.

I always dread these "rifts in the team" storylines. :-(
The rifts and the breakups are my favorite part. Happiness is boring. :)
I'm with Andrew, I'm concerned about the implications of tag for the May & Coulson relationship.
This episode was a lot of fun. Shit just got real! I didn't like the dialogue much this time. But as always, there are enough moments to cherish. I wonder where the secret they revealed in this episode will lead to. Because nothing is really concrete yet. I hope we'll get to see a Joss Whedon-written episode before the season is done. His touch of dialogue is needed indeed.

I don't want this show to feel like it has to tie in with the MCU all the time, and feature larger-than-large-stuff characters. It loses the intimate vibe of the group that I actually have a thing for.
Enjoyed it a lot. Only thing is that it was a bit silly how easily Ward left himself open to being affected by Lorelei's spell. I get that the plan was for Sif to deal with her, but the team must have known better than to let any male even get close to where she was.

If Ward preferred someone other than May, I'm hoping it won't be Skye, Simmons would be the more interesting choice, but what I'm mostly hoping for is that his secret desire turns out to be Fitz and he'll turn out to be bi and/or stuck in the closet.
(PS I hope this doesn't read like 'shipping', certainly not meaning to encourage anything like that, I'm just thinking aloud what I myself might find most interesting and original for the dynamics, developments & content of the show.)

Was also hoping for a Loki cameo in the end, but to pull that off would probably have involved both Tom Hiddleston and Anthony Hopkins, and even if they had made that possible, it would have already been teased with on many different websites so I would have known about it (sometimes I wish I had the strength to close myself off from the Internet so I would get more surprises, like how I already knew over a month ago that Sif was going to be in this one).

[ edited by Valentijn on 2014-03-12 22:28 ]
Yeah, it bothered me too that no one had the simple good sense to say, keep the men back to handle the already enthralled men and let Sif and May deal directly with Lorelei. I mean we have an adversary that can take over any living man. Great, let's just put our most resourceful, active agent where she can put her mitts on him. Great plan!

As for the decision to go into the Guesthouse with deadly force, I'm with those who argue, our guys didn't know what they were getting into. When they've used sedating weapons it's been when they've known for sure what they were up against, and when their targets weren't actually armed or hostile. (Yes, Mike could have blown up, but that wouldn't have been intentional.) Going into the Guesthouse they had every reason to assume they were going to be met with armed resistance, and they didn't know how much or how deadly or anything else about what was there. For all they knew, the Guesthouse could have been a prison that was keeping all the brilliant doctors who restored Coulson's life against their will. If they'd known they would only be up against two guards, then sedating weapons would have been great; but they didn't know that. I think we're forgetting that spy business is murky stuff, and sometimes the guys we're rooting for make the wrong decisions.
Well, no, not really. I expect some morally ambiguous stuff. It's going to be a boring show if it doesn't delve into some more complicated situations when they're doing jobs that involve shooting people a lot. What I don't like is inconsistent characterization, which is what this approach has felt like. Maybe it's ultimately part of Coulson going off the rails, but so far it just feels like last week's team and this week's team are very different people.
I just can't shake the image of the team locked in the Guesthouse with the timer running down and futilely trying to blow open the front door by icing an explosive.

Seriously though, I do think it's morally ambiguous, but I don't necessarily see it as inconsistent characterization. What wouldn't Coulson do for his people when his back is truly up against the wall? I think it was a desperate moment.

And although I believe his reasons were much more personal than not... Skye is also an 0-8-4 with possible strategic value to SHIELD. If using live ammo upped the odds of success... it's an argument to be made anyway.
It was a nice episode, but I feel left out on the Marvel Universe, I'm not a comic nerd, I don't know anything about it. I guess this upcoming special is what I need.
>> Poor dear, he's always getting knocked out.

Fitz! He's Giles: The Next Generation
The headline doesn't actually link to this thread - it points to 32730, the one about Metamorphosis.
Huh, weird. I always test for that and really thought I did yesterday. Thanks, fixed.
@Krusher: I don't know much about the Marvel Universe either, and I may be missing some stuff, but I think they're doing a good job at introducing weird characters without losing me. I wasn't sold on Lorelei from last week's teaser, but she worked.

What they're not doing, however, is convincing me that SHIELD is clever. Sending men against her was just stupid, and didn't even help the story: they could just have her met Ward after being captured or something.
My point was, if you know someone is vulnerable, why not send the agents who aren't?
They did make some effort to keep the men away. Coulson even gave an order to focus on her drones and leave Lorelei to Sif. Lorelei just snuck out the back while Sif was busy with minions.
Over the course of the series they have made a number of operational gaffes that remind me of Spike's sarcastic line about the Scoobies: this is the crack team that foils my every plan?

[ edited by baxter on 2014-03-13 13:02 ]
An easy way to avoid the "why on earth would they send men after Lorelei when Sif has JUST explained in detail what happens to them in her presence" simple not having SHIELD meet Sif until AFTER Ward was captured.

While I'm totally on board with the show, I do feel that they get too sloppy sometimes from writing point of view. The fact that we're still arguing about the guards, not because it was such a gruesome, morally gray thing but because we cannot follow the character's line of thinking that lead to this outcome and now the "sending men and esp. Ward after Lorelei" situation shows there are clearly some problems to be worked out.

Most of it, to me, feels like it's a consequence of being forced to have action be part of the show every week. Why not stretch Lorelei over two episodes, give it time to create a more believable scenario for Ward to come across her to be turned. Why not have the team go in WITH night-night guns but have some phlebotinum thing disable them, forcing the team to scrounge for a different way to disable the guards leading to lethal force by taking the gun from one to take out the other. Doesn't need to be a drawn out sequence either.
I liked this episode and enjoyed it. Yes it was stupid to have men around the area while apprehending Lorelei. I get that it was an accident that Ward ran into her but still, if Shield was smart no men would have been in the gerenal area at all. He also had a gun on her, knowing what he KNEW as he had been told, he should not have let her touch him. I mean you don't point a gun at someone unless you intend to use it, and he is trained to use it, right?

Anyway, I also think Coulson is particularly messed up because he had been dead a long time (unlike Skye) and has been remembering the experiences that he went through while being bought back. Flashes that they have showed us of him remembering make it look horrifying. Skye was not dead that long and did not go through the process that Coulson did (there were no shots of aliens rebuilding her brain while awake, she was just given an injection). So it makes sense that Coulson is in much worst shape than Skye.
All the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents who went in after her were women, correct? So it was only Ward that shouldn't have been sent in. And while that was needed for the story, it should have been worked out in a more satisfying way, I agree.
barboo-It gives May a reason to sit back in her chair and get someone else on the plane. We've had the 'he doesn't want to kiss you' thing-let's do some spy stuff! Get someone else to watch your back....

The whole episode felt undernourished. It is very light on the 'covert ops' vibe. They could also benefit from spreading out lines to extras-helps get the 'feel' of the place. The difference between having 2 speaking extras and having 4 is not double, it's exponential!
The defeat of Lorlei was a moment of TV history, I enjoyed it-but the road to get there was squirrelly at times.
I had a different problem with this episode. It had way too much in common with one of the worst episodes from the first season of Stargate SG-1.

That episode had a redheaded alien (claiming to be a god) who had the power to control men. Of course most of the main characters were men and were government agents (well, soldiers and one scientist) whose job was to capture her.

This episode of SHIELD was much better than that, but it still reminded me of it, which isn't good.

Plus, I might be a little burned out on the villain with the power to control men trope. I can name several of those and the stories usually end up being a little too similar. I just realized that one of those, the Batman villain Poison Ivy, is also a redhead. I sense a mistrust of redheads in this trope.
Just to throw the general question out there... How does everyone's opinion of the circumstances change if the genders are swapped? If Lorelei was some Don Juan type, how would the scene have sat when Coulson benched May strictly because she was a woman who couldn't be counted on to do her job and not to fall in love with "Logan"? Common sense? In light of the premise, maybe, but the optics are terrible.

To be clear, I enjoyed the episode - I don't have to wring meaning out of every ounce of my entertainment. Sometimes it's about fun, but I think if you do start visiting why they chose this particular premise and what they were trying to say with it... I don't have a lot of answers and I'm not sold it was a such a great idea. Why even create a scenario where gender discrimination plays as a common sense solution?
Just to throw the general question out there... How does everyone's opinion of the circumstances change if the genders are swapped?

Well, I think for this episode the gender roles were kind of fixed, as they meant to bring in Sif and draw from Marvel's Thor comics. Lorelei was a character from a (the) classic run on Thor by Walter Simonson. So as far as tying into the Marvel Universe goes, I think they did an excellent job with this selection: Lorelei as the threat, and out of all Asgardian warriors have Lady Sif bring her in (not to end with a male over female victory).

Marvel HAS a male villain with a power over females, and I can imagine that they could make a really powerful episode with something like that, but this particular guy 1. wouldn't lend itself to a Lady Sif/Asgardian tie-in; 2. would be hard to pull off without looking ridiculous:

There's also a scary Marvel villain called Purple Man who has power over anyone's will. I'd bet that they're going to use him in the Marvel Netflix series at some point, as he's mostly been the enemy of three of the four starring Netflix characters: Luke Cage, Jessica Jones and Daredevil.

[ edited by Valentijn on 2014-03-13 16:41 ]

[ edited by Valentijn on 2014-03-13 16:42 ]

[ edited by Valentijn on 2014-03-13 16:43 ]

[ edited by Valentijn on 2014-03-13 16:43 ]
When the genders are swapped, the story gets a lot more rapey. That alone makes it much more difficult to write. The idea of a beautiful woman having the ability to seduce any man just doesn't have the same connotations as a man with a built-in ruffie power.

I can actually think of two male Marvel characters who have a similar power. One of them is the Mandrill, who literally has the face of a baboon. This makes it pretty clear that women don't actually want to be with him and makes it scary not enticing as with Lorelei. The other is Starfox, who started off being portrayed as charming, but recent Marvel stories have touched on the fact that his powers are actually really creepy.

I think a story could be written where May was benched and that didn't come across as bad in any way. The fact that May already doesn't go on all the missions would actually make it seem obvious. As long as Coulson isn't a dick about it, it's no different from saying, "The bad guy has a gas gun, so Fitz you need to stay back because of your fatal allergy to the toxins in that gas."
BringItON5x5, they are basing her on a character from the Thor comics, who in turn was based on a real character from Norse mythology.
I am not a comic guy, but "Man-drill" (wow...) would be precisely the reason the show needs to be very careful about which stories it adapts and incorporates and which are forgotten. The reason I brought up the gender swap is because it makes it more obvious... benching Ward is a messaging problem. Sending him in is a plot/logic hole. So maybe the question ought to be asked - how did we get backed into this corner? Why are we even telling this particular story? Or I can just relax and remember that I enjoyed the episode... and it's all good.
I don't think swapping genders would make it more rapey - I think it was pretty darn rapey as it was. Yeah, Lorelei's hot, but that doesn't mean Ward automatically wants to have sex with her. He didn't have the capacity to consent or not consent. That'd pretty much the definition of sexual assault. I hope the show will go there when addressing the fallout from the episode.

I wish Coulson didn't feel the need to keep the source of the medication a secret. I guess he doesn't want Skye to feel guilty about it, but that omission will very likely tear apart the team. Which, conflict = good TV, I know.
"Man, sometimes I really feel like I'm watching a completely different show to the rest of you guys!

I thought this ep was a massive let down. More clichéd and "paint-by-numbers" writing. No real depth given to the guest characters. A very predictable plot you've seen a thousand times before, with no ounce of subversion or a new take on it. Really bad fight choreography between Sif and Lorelei.

And the show is starting to feel/look cheap."

I completely agree. I'm a huge Whedon fan, like most people here, but I don't think I can continue to watch this show, I'm getting more bored every episode. The plot might be going forward, but it feels less and less like a Whedon show.

I'm going back to Teen Wolf, which feels a lot more Whedonesque/Buffyesque than AoS.
Dumb plot. I'm sorry, but if you know that she controls men with her voice you don't send in Ward. You send Mai. Or you send him with earplugs. It's a plot hole you can drive a Mac truck through.
I enjoyed this one well enough. It reminded me a bit of an episode of Stargate SG1, so not exactly cutting edge, and yes pretty silly plot. I agree with others about last weeks problems with the characters. Every now and again there's an episode that could just really have used a rewrite from Joss.
It wasn't just her voice. Most men she could control by voice but for "stronger" willed men she needed to touch them as well. The implication is that Ward is a stronger willed man because first she talked to him and he was able to resist until she touched him as well.

Would ear plugs work?
redeem147 said:
"But if you know that's her power, and SHIELD is such a big organization, why don't you only send in straight female agents?"

When they found the Vegas hotel suite that Ward and Lorelei had been staying in, all the agents in "SWAT gear" (for lack of a better term) who accompanied May, were female. You could hear their female voices calling out "Clear!" and communicating on their walkies and, even though everyone was covered up and could pass for male in the blink-and-you'll-miss time that that scene played out, you could see that some were women under their outfits.

But yes, earlier when they approached the biker bar, they should've just used May and Sif, and maybe kept Ward and Coulson at a safe distance in case any biker army came out that they needed to subdue.

The updated night-night guns (or icers) now leave that blue veiny/blue-tears look underneath the eyes of those who've been stunned with them, just like what happened with the team in the train episode. Did we see Fitz get his hands on one of those guns in "TRACKS" ? Looks like he learned some science from that ep and incoporated it into SHIELD designs.

Valentijn said:
"If Ward preferred someone other than May, I'm hoping it won't be Skye, Simmons would be the more interesting choice, but what I'm mostly hoping for is that his secret desire turns out to be Fitz and he'll turn out to be bi and/or stuck in the closet...I'm just thinking aloud what I myself might find most interesting and original for the dynamics, developments & content of the show."

Oh man, seconded ! Never considered that (and was hoping it'd be Simmons instead of Skye as well--they've left enough crumbs that either could turn out to be the case, but Skye would be the more conventional/boring choice, Simmons much less so). This will not happen, there's no way in hell they'd reveal that Ward is attracted to Fitz (much less have the attraction be mutual or ever play out a full-fledged relationship with the two). It's on ABC/it's Disney (not saying the network has never had gay main characters--though, have they?), it's a mostly straight male demographic-aimed show in its first year, and...nope, there're just too many corporate interests involved and they won't do it with the mains.

It'd be pretty groundbreaking for US network TV, though, to have a gay/bi alpha-male in an action/adventure/sci-fi series, no ? They had Michael Cudlitz' cop on Southland (dunno if he was an "alpha male", per se--haven't got around to watching that series yet), is that the closest they've come ? Still not a genre series, though.

Re: changing the genders makes it more rapey/creepy

Nah, that's just in our heads (social mores). It was plenty creepy with a woman too. From the tragedy of what happened in the tag of the previous ep (I always imagine what happens to the supposedly unimportant characters like the newlyweds--her confusion and devastation over being left at that desert gas stop), to the husband being thrown against a car and supposedly killed (Lorelei's dialogue implied that the hit was meant to kill, not merely that she was wiping him away and freeing him), her powers and actions came off as plenty evil. And she both mind-raped and physically raped Ward, as well. I doubt we'll see the fallout of that (though wouldn't mind a nod to it, as others here have mentioned), unless they're planning on drawing out May/Ward relations or their discussion of what they're doing (the only scenes I can see it coming up in).

You could do this storyline with a male Lorelei (and a male Asgardian pursuer), if not for the fact that way too many viewers are super-sensitive and PC about it. It is sensitive subject matter, but turnabout is fair play.

[ edited by Kris on 2014-03-14 20:21 ]

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