28th Nov2014

‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 2×05: Hen in the Wolf House’ Review

by ApolloXL5

Written by Brent Fletcher | Directed by Holly Dale

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PLOT:

An undercover Simmons finds herself in a jam when HYDRA begin a security crackdown, led by the beautiful and deadly Bobby Morse. And Raina is also feeling the pressure as she is caught in the grips of both Daniel Whitehall and Skye’s Father.

VERDICT:

Things are certainly heating up with Agents of Shield right now as the tension and stakes continue to rise with each and every episode, which just comes to show how far the series has changed since it’s lacklustre first season (the strong run of final episodes does not save the entire season).

First I have to say that Adrianne Palicki was really good as Bobbi Morse (who in the comics is known as Mockingbird, an agent of Shield and Avenger) and we got to see two sides to her character in her introductory episode. We saw her as the dark and stern Hydra agent and then as her more good natured self after we find out that she too was undercover for Shield. Plus finding out that she was Hunter’s ex-wife was a fun moment (since it was obvious we were going to find out who it was, due to his constant mentioning of her throughout the season thus far), and we also got a very cool (if very Black Widow-like) action scene with her verse some Hydra Agents as well as a roof-top escape where she and Simmons jump onto an invisible Quinjet (it is nice when get some cool looking scenes like that in this show).

We got to see Skye’s Father for more than one scene during this episode (unlike the previous instalments) and I thought Kyle MacLachlan was excellent, playing someone who clearly cares a great deal about his daughter and will do anything to be reunited with her (he also shows his sorrow when he sees Skye’s reaction to the things he has done). And he clearly has a darkness inside of himself that he is having a hard time controlling, like in his scene with Raina or his short but interesting fight with two Hydra guards (Skye’s Father is definitely like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hide, only at the exact same time, no transformation required). MacLachlan definitely has a presence to him (like Reed Diamond as Daniel Whitehall) and when he meets the Hydra Leader at the episode’s end, it is a very tense moment and it will be very interesting to see where this alliance goes from there.

And speaking of Skye, didn’t she have one ’hell of day’ (as Coulson puts it). I mean she finally has a heart to heart with Coulson about the secrets he has been keeping from her (after having another chat with Ward), like his wall carving obsession and the fact that she could go the same way…but hasn’t, which maybe because she might be an alien (that’s a big one). But the biggest moment came when she nearly met her Father, only to believe that he is a monster (characters finding their parents on TV and Film rarely ever turns out to be good, does it).

I also enjoyed the dinner between Coulson and Raina, which was another tense scene because we didn’t know that the Director had an ace up his sleeve when she outed Simmon’s to Hydra right in front of him (unless you know your comic-books of course) as well as spouting little details about Skye, her Father and Hydra too.

Now the only part of the episode that niggled me was Simmon’s being pulled out of Hydra story-wise, I mean didn’t it feel a little soon to be doing so. She doesn’t seem to have done much in the time that she was there (only one episode focused on her mission, the one with Blizzard) and we are only on episode five so far. Plus Fitz just got over his need to talk to his imaginary version of her, since he now has made friends with the others again and become part of the group once more. But now Simmons is back, I hope that won’t make them go back to how they were in season one (just being stuck in the lab together) as the pair have been more interesting to watch now.

****½  4.5/5

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