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February 07 2017

(SPOILER) Discuss Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4x13 "BOOM". The episode was written by Nora and Lilla Zuckerman. It was directed by Billy Gierhart.

Only saw 1st half storm is messing up my signals. Got an antenna going now.

Karma for a few at least.
Karma hasn't been working hard enough these days!
Has Stan Lee ever had a cameo on this show?
Can we move to the world Aida made? I wanna live there inste... ohhhh, she made The Matrix!
That guy is amazingly not crazy for reading the crazy making book... hmm.
Stan Lee was on the train in S1 and a pic in Elena's web series.
Ah. Thanks, Dusk.
Yay for Avengers shout-out!
I love Agnes' dress, btw.
I saw that one coming!
Oh, that manic laughter was before the boom. Booms aren't good. Because there were probably other people besides the hateful ones near it.
Huh ? I sure didn't.
But Amen on the Karma. Why didn't she turn I wonder.

[ edited by JDL on 2017-02-08 04:15 ]
Was it Shockley who went boom? Is he an explodey Inhuman? Or did he have a bomb in that bag?
Yes it was Shockley that turned.
I hope he's explodey guy. That would be fun.
Hello all.

Welp, I was enjoying Parminder Nagra.
So Shockley is Explodey Guy.
Me: Why does he have all his clothes except his shoes?
My daughter: Maybe that's his power. His shoes explode, but he's immune to it.
I think he probably stole new clothes from somewhere but couldn't find any shoes.
Yes. Apparently just holding the new crystal won't turn you. Has to be a dust/mist so more of them could turn perhaps.
I kind of hope this episode will subvert expectations and not kill off Mace. But I guess I kind of know better. Sigh.
mnspnr: 😄

Also, maybe Nadeer didn't turn, because she already turned in the past. We didn't see her dead. Maybe she's not.
@Nebula1400 good point. If we don't see the body (and even sometimes if we do) we don't know if they're really dead.
I love May too, but still not feeling the Coulson/May whatever.
Ow! Is it wrong that I laughed?
I wish they'd drop "the Russians" as evil enemy trope. So lame.
Shockley: "Damn! Well, at least I'm immune to my own explosions. Uh... now what to do about this 10,000 foot drop?"
Fitz is gonna be pissed. That's two containment module failures.
So the blast wouldn't kill Shockley but the fall probably did.

They said 3 bodies so I buy Nadeer being dead.
OH COME ON. That's no fair.
I guess as long as he's still just atoms, he can withstand anything...
It wouldn't hurt if someone said "frell" every once in a while instead. Frak isn't the only fake swearword, you know.
So Radcliffe has invented the Matrix.
So I was wrong. Does Aida 2 seem jealous to anyone else?
@AndrewCrossett Yup.
@Dusk I've been wondering the same thing.
I want Nadeer's brother to come back.
@JDL - Yeah, we were wondering how many containment modules have gotten destroyed.
I am loving Daisy this episode.
@Nebula - I want Nadeer's brother back too. Now would be good!
For those who are interested in this sort of thing here is a link that explains in part why new Blu-rays can be a problem. I think this is some of what Irrationaltv has been alluding to.

[ edited by JDL on 2017-02-08 06:08 ]
Now would be good, javelina, though I suspect that's going to be the third story arc.
'Agnes has left the Library. Agnes has been saved...'
Aida 2 a Reverse Stepford Wife?
But once Agnes is dead is it her consciousness that's living on, or just a recording?
That Aida LMD is messed up.
Strong episode tonight.Was really surprised they killed Nadeer off.Also really like Mace tonight.I too thought he was going to be killed but glad he wasn't.
@Nebula, I'm sure! What's the 3rd arc called, again?
I wonder if Joss will ever direct another episode of this show.
Haha they caught that guy with a giant pokeball.
Do we have a name for the third arc? I've been avoiding spoilers,so I don't know.
We don't know about the next arc yet.

It sounds like both May and Agnes minds get to live on in the machine.
No name yet afaik.
I wonder if Agnes clues May into her situation.
Did they catch Shockley in that thing, or did they disrupt him and kill him?
Caught him by the looks of it.

Do we know Agnes and May are connected in their worlds?
Caught him I thought.
@Dusk I think Agnes would have to seek May out which would be a nice touch. I am pretty sure that she knows its May in the Matrix.

[ edited by JDL on 2017-02-08 05:23 ]
This is turning into a Dollhouse prequel.
FWIW I think Aida as a child of the Darkhold was tainted from the get go and will only get worse.
Radcliffe was building Aida long before the Darhold. These advanced memory machines and 'light brains' are from the book but not Aida herself. Aida 2 isn't even technically the one who read it, it was Aida 1 who the team burned, the other android just has a copy of the memories as far as we know; she hasn't read it yet since Radcliffe just got it.
Apologies if this has been asked and answered before, but I just rewatched the first Avengers movie yesterday, and very near the top of that movie, Tony Stark makes a reference to a life model decoy. So, in the Marvel Universe that encompasses both the movies and this show, LMDs are a technology that Stark is aware of and feels comfortable joking about with Coulson, even though, at that point, Stark has been excluded from the "Avengers Initiative."

Are LMDs being retconned here? Radcliffe has been working on this — presumably in the form of an artificial body that can accept a copy of a live person's brain's contents — ever since he disappeared from Agnes' life. The matrix-y framework came later, out of the necessity of keeping May docile (and requiring the smarts of Aida2 to work out the details).

There's no evidence (that I can recall) of Stark working with Radcliffe, so how is it that he could make the reference in the first movie and expect it to mean something to Coulson?
There was reference to the Koenig brothers having worked on "the original LMD program," so Radcliffe had just re-started a program that had apparently been shut down in the past. It would make sense that if SHIELD had been working on such a project, Stark Industries would have been involved.

As for Aida and the Darkhold, it doesn't seem like Aida 2 had been given a copy of Aida 1's memories, since she was asking Radcliffe about her "previous model" at one point. I think that Aida was simply programmed to support Radcliffe, with the instruction that getting the Darkhold was the most important goal. She's taken that to mean that it's more important than individual human lives. (Radcliffe probably is sincere in wanting to do good for humanity, but he's an "ends justifies the means" guy.)
The Koenig brothers were techs on the original concept for the LMDs for SHIELD. Stark probably heard of this.

Radcliffe wanting to extend life/evolution and tried with Inhumans first but then switched to robotics in part to help protect Fitz and the others. He made Aida 1 based on a similar concept but with his own improvements. The Darkhold then allowed him to advance to brains of light in his own LMD/Maybot and the framework etc.
Thanks for clearing that up for me.
This was the best episode of the season so far, IMO. This season has really started working for me with this LMD arc.
Now if the third arc is really as amazing as Chloe Bennet claims, this season may end up being awesome after all. So far, other than season 2, AoS seasons tend to improve and get amazing towards the end of the season.
@NYPinTA: "That guy is amazingly not crazy for reading the crazy making book... hmm."
Or maybe he was already batshit crazy to begin with, so it can't have much of an effect on him.

@Grack21: Every AoS season has had some sort of memory manipulation/memory stealing as a plot point. Dollhouse comparisons are inevitable. Season 1 even had a direct Dollhouse homage.

@Dusk: When did Radcliffe work with the Inhumans? As far as I know, the only thing he ever did that had to do with them was when he was kidnapped by "previous benefactor" Hive and made to make humans into Inhumans.
I just like that the show gave us the situation of a human discussing the "uncanny valley" with an android who knew all about it.
OK, well, I also like that the show gave that wonderful actress a chance to show so much more of her range than the Aida role allowed her to have. I think these writers are very good to their actors and actresses.
That's what I meant. Radcliffe was fascinated and semi-willing to to work for Hive; an ancient Inhuman that should have died several times over. Now we know where that fascination comes from.
@mozzarellademon: That's true. At least 6 actors billed as the main cast, plus Mellory Jensen, who is practically a regular this season, have gotten to play multiple characters on the show. (Before the LMD arc is over, we may see more of them get that opportunity.) And beyond that, they've all gotten to play different versions of themselves as their characters change or undergo trauma, like Fitz' brain damage.

Is Mellory Jensen this season"s MVP as far as the cast is concerned, or what?

On the downside, unlike the amazing stuff that she and John Hannah get to do during this LMD arc, the majority of the main characters we've spent a lot of time with aren't getting very interesting character material at the moment. I hope the remaining episodes give Daisy, Fitz and Simmons some more character development. At the moment, it feels like I'm watching a less lighthearted version of the first few episodes of season 1, with a more adult and sexier Fitz and Simmons either spouting technobabble or worrying about each other, and Daisy as a female Ward with superpowers, stone-cold field operative beating up the bad guys with a lot of grumpy brooding and occasional snark.

[ edited by TimeTravellingBunny on 2017-02-09 05:57 ]
Is it me or did Simmons' line asking Fitz to stop putting himself in danger seem like foreshadowing? We're expecting Mace to take one for the team, but what if something bad happened to Fitz instead?
Right now, Mace has such a target on his chest that it would kind of surprise me if they do go ahead and kill him off.

Fitz and Simmons are safe as long as they keep having arguments. Only when Fitz proposes marriage or something will one of them die.
@Andrew Crossett: Then again, last season the show kept trolling the viewers exactly by playing with those expectations - Fitz and Simmons talking about going on vacation, while there was the "who's going to die?" thing going on, was deliberate trolling. We kept being terrified that one of them would die now that they've finally gotten together, and they subverted that expectation.
Killing off a supporting character typically serves the purpose of motivating a leading character to do something in response (e.g. the death of Tara motivating Willow). I'm not sure the death of either Fitz or Simmons would help the writers accomplish anything of that nature, since they are both supporting characters. Killing off both of them might motivate the rest of the team, but that seems an extreme step to take.
@tomg: Fitz and Simmons are both among the main characters. "Supporting characters" would be people like Mace or Elena. And it's not like the show has not had things done to them mostly to motive one or the other. For instance, Simmons on Maveth, which produced an entire episode entirely devoted to her (I don't think you normally do that with "supporting characters"), while also giving Fitz motivation for most of his actions in the early part of season 3.

Each of them also could die as a conclusion to their own arc and in some kind of a heroic sacrifice, rather than to motivate anyone else. That also can happen to characters that are arguably not main characters. Lincoln fit the supporting character designation much more, but he got to be the hero and save the day sacrificing himself in the season 3 finale. It also served to make Daisy feel terrible and further her character development, and I guess motivate her to be away from SHIELD for the first part of season 4, but that was not the main effect of it. There were also instances when prominent recurring/supporting characters got to play the roles that you would usually expect the protagonist to play, like Mike Peterson killing the season 1 Big Bad Garrett (I don't care that they resurrected Garrett for 2 minutes just so Coulson could humorously kill him again, that barely counts) or Cal killing Jiaying - the season 2 Big Bad - to save Daisy in the season 2 finale.
YMMV, but I consider Coulson and Skye/Daisy the main characters.
"But once Agnes is dead is it her consciousness that's living on, or just a recording?"

This ! It's the Dollhouse dilemma all over again. You die, but the copy of you that continues to exist is happy to live its life (if it's without awareness of how it came to be), or at least feels lucky to be alive (if it's aware of its origin) and perhaps a little resentful about not being the original.

I know Agnes didn't have long to live, but she trusted Radcliffe way too easily and HAD to have been aware that she just committed suicide. A copy of her thought patterns (fine, "consciousness", if you like) may continue to "live" on within a program.
The show's definitely an ensemble, but at the outset, it felt like Coulson was lead and Skye was second (I wouldn't be surprised in Clark Greg was listed as #1 on the show's callsheets, then #2 was probably Chloe Bennet or possibly Ming-Na Wen, then I dunno who would've been the fourth, fifth, and sixth spots between Brett Dalton, Ian, and Elizabeth Mitchell). It's since evolved. FitzSimmons are arguably just as prominent as Coulson and Skye/Daisy. Whether the show (its writers) will treat them as being as important as Coulson and Daisy in the end, though...I'm guessing not. They're unlikely to get that final moment in the series (unless it's an ensemble scene), unless there's a poignant reason for them to get it or if the showrunners go after the fan-favorite characters.

Unless one of them dies before the series finale, the final scene of the series is likely to be a father/daughter, mentor/student moment between Coulson and Daisy. Unless the final acene is an action setpiece involving the entire team. Maybe they all die. They are agents protecting the public -- the movies don't spare a second thought over killing these kinds of characters (well, they haven't unceremoniously killed off anyone with powers like Daisy yet).

And huh, I hadn't thought of that, whoever brought it up a number of posts ago -- that now with Agnes introduced to us and the revelation back in an earlier ep that Radcliffe is trying to eradicate the worry of death, it colours his working with Hive with more interesting strokes. Hive was an immortal, self-healing creature, so of course Radcliffe's fascination of and opportunity to get the chance to work with (and possibly on) Hive would override his fear of being killed by him.

[ edited by Kris on 2017-02-11 22:54 ]

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