We’re at 30,000 feet and the team on The Bus is in trouble! May spits out orders as Hydra QuinJets return to blow them out of the air. The plane heads into clouds as the QuinJets fire, then drops decoys and cloaks as the missiles go all explody. Fake out! Hydra thinks the plane really exploded and peels off, while we make another note about how #$%& awesome May is, and the Bus heads back to the Playground to pick up the rest of the team.
Once there, Coulson, FitzSimmons and Bobbi hop on the Bus, and everyone heads back to San Juan to head off Hydra from getting into the tunnels that lead to the secret alien city with the temple that will do something bad once the Diviner is placed in it. Whew, got all that? Trip brings out some of his granddad’s old Howling Commandos explosives, since they don’t need electronics to work and the tunnels kill electrical devices. FitzSimmons are considering what happened to Mac as being taken over. They figure out that he’s likely been co-opted by the mysterious city and thus might not be dead. Hurray!
Hunter finds Bobbi in Mac’s garage. What’s Bobbie doing in there, rifling through Mac’s things? Oh, it’s a thumb drive she doesn’t want Hunter to know about. No luck, he figures it out, but decides to trust the master spy and interrogator, ’cause love people! Possibly sex too!
Cut to Coulson and May loading weapons for the upcoming fun. May’s second guessing herself about letting Ward take Skye off the plane, but Coulson reminds her that the team and Bus are still alive because of her actions, so that has to count for something. He’s thinking of the big picture, just like a Director should!
Ward leads a handcuffed Skye through Hydra headquarters, complimenting her on her growth as a agent. She’d like to test her marksmanship skills on him. Not so fast Skye, he’s leading you to a face to face meeting with your dad!
Awkward family reunion time! He’s a bit touchy and sweaty, swings from high to low moods, struggling to keep his anger problems in control. Skye isn’t too keen on the moment, what with being kidnapped by her murdering psycho of dad working for a terrorist organization. Perhaps if he had brought almond cookies and stopped sweating so profusely? Like seriously, I expect the sweat to pool and form a monster!
He tells her his name is Cal. He and Skye’s mother were originally a happy couple, delighted with Skye’s birth. But then Hydra agents, working within SHIELD, kidnapped Mom. Cal left Skye in the care of people he trusted and went looking for mom. He found her too late, shortly after Whitehall had finished torturing and killing her, in order to steal her non-aging powers.
Then Cal went on rampage (killing the entire village they were living in?), determined to avenge her death by killing Whitehall. It’s taken him decades to find him. In the meantime, Skye was stolen away (SHIELD) and placed at an orphanage, due to Cal’s grief stricken unstable behavior. Or possibly all the sweating, which just doesn’t look good! Maybe if we had a bucket to collect the sweat…
Skye gets a bit emotional about the back-story, but demands that he let her go. Cal refuses (like he’s in charge), saying it’s her destiny to be where she is and go into the tunnels and realize how special she is. Her mom was special also, from a long line of people who were also special. Isn’t that special?! Cal wants Skye to receive her birthright gift, which involves being transformed into something (googles synonyms) exceptional.
After dropping that bombshell, he begins humming a tune, in what will surely be one of the Top Five Creepiest scenes of the year. Skye recognizes it and Cal says her mom used to hum it to her. But then there’s a knock on the door and a Hydra lackey#242 announces that Whitehall wants to see Cal. He continues humming the tune while sauntering out the door.
Bobbi and Hunter are in San Juan, working with her local contact that allowed SHIELD access to the tunnels to the hidden city. But Hydra is there now, working with the same contact, who thankfully leads them elsewhere while dropping off a note with an address to Bobbi. Who was busy kissing Hunter in an alley to divert suspicion from themselves! Because a couple kissing in an empty alley doesn’t look odd at all!
The rest of the team arrives in San Juan, and saddles up. Trip, Coulson and May are heading into the creepy dark tunnels to plant bombs, while FitzSimmons oversees things from the tunnel entrance. They’ll be wearing hazmats suits ’cause FitzSimmons believes the alien city full of advanced technology won’t recognize intruders who are wearing suits. Righto! Keep your human DNA to yourself folks!
Trip pauses to ask Sam Koenig (the shorter one!) where his twin brother is. Sam responds that his cooling system blew in all the excitement, so he recharging his batteries! Trip fixes him with a look, one shared by me. The producers are just blatantly trolling us now and it’s delightful!
As Trip leaves, Coulson tells Sam that if things go bad, he’s to implement the Theta Protocol. Theta is the eighth letter of the Greek alphabet, so this is pretty heavy duty if we’re going to skip right past seven other protocols! Sam protests, but Coulson is firm and Sam reluctantly agrees.
BEEP BEEP! It’s Bobbi on Coulson’s phone! She and Hunter are at the address that her contact slipped her. It’s where Hydra agents have nested (get it? SNAKES!). The team quickly realizes the Hydra is directly over the super special temple and has SHIELD tools to quickly drill down to it. So much for the tunnel route!
Uh oh, change of plans! Coulson and May will go to the theater and help Bobbie and Hunter find Skye and mess up Hydra while Trip and FitzSimmons head into the tunnels to plant bombs!
Meanwhile, inside the theater, Raina is watching over the superpowered Plasma drill (now backordered on Amazon), until she’s called into a meeting with Whitehall. She enters a room with a number of guards, Ward and Cal. Whitehall strides in and looks around. This isn’t going be about Ward’s expense account!
He begins monologuing by thanking them three of them for their help, but that asks what Skye means to all this. Cue a handcuffed Skye being led in, along with NotMay/brainwashed Agent33 carrying a box holding the Diviner. Whitehall commands her to pick up the alien device known for killing people who touch it. Skye snarks back “You first,” but the Hydra agents with guns pointed at her convince her otherwise and Skye reluctantly reaches for the device. It doesn’t harm her! In fact, it glows all pretty like with the alien symbols Coulson was obsessed with carving. OOOHHH AHHHH.
She quickly presses the Diviner against a guard’s face, killing him, as Cal stabs another one and Ward draws his gun. Too late, NotMay and other guards draw faster and it’s a standoff! Whitehall continues monologuing, talking about how he’s going to experiment on Skye, then orders Cal knocked out and Ward taken into custody, with the hope of brainwashing him. Big plans for the weekend!
NotMay/Agent33 stand guard over Ward and he chats up her. Turns out they have a lot in common, they both mindlessly follow(ed) a leader. Ward’s a bit quicker on the uptake, as he realized his leader went insane, while Agent 33 seems happy to continue complying.
At the other end of an awesome industrial kitchen, Cal wakes up and tries to attack Whitehall. It doesn’t work as he has an electric chip implanted which enables Whitehall to press a button and shock him into submission. Like a dog fence collar! (Target $279) His revenge plan is going downhill!
Whitehall begins monologuing yet again, but ups his daily evil quota by talking more about killing this person, torturing that person. The man has a definite hobby! Having stolen Skye’s mom longevity, he hopes to steal whatever special power Skye has. But what is it?
Up above, Coulson, May, Hunter and Bobbi begin their assault on the guards and super drill. Coulson wishes they had a dozen more soldiers, while May wishes they had 50. Always be on May’s team, she’s a big thinker! The attack breaks up the Hydra guards, and Ward manages to distract one of them long enough for Cal to attack and kill him. Great news!
But Cal doesn’t free either Skye or Ward! Instead he runs off to personally kill Whitehall himself, no doubt leaving a trail of sweat whatever he goes. Maybe we can get Mickey’s magic mop to follow him, it’s got to be a safety hazard, those wet floors!
Down in the tunnels, Trip and FitzSimmons are running around placing bombs. The alien city seems fine with that, as no defense system are triggered. Probably running Windows XP, white suit edition.
Cal confronts Whitehall finally! Music swells as they slowly approach each other, Whitehall raises his gun and…Coulson comes from behind and shoots him! Just like that, one shot and Whitehall goes down. Cal is not grateful! In fact, he’s downright mad and he and Coulson start fighting! I would hate to give this guy a bad Christmas present!
Meanwhile, Ward manages to break free and quickly unties Skye, with the intent of getting them both out of there. Skye has other other plans and when his back is turned she grabs a guard’s gun and shoots Ward! BAM BAM BAM BAM, four times! As he crumples to the floor, she remarks that he taught her “never turn your back on the enemy.” IT’S F-N AWESOME. Skye annoyances redeemed!
Skye makes her way around the theater and discovers Cal literally beating the life out of Coulson. She orders him to stop or she’ll shoot. He reluctantly agrees and then tells her she has to finish this, to go into the tunnels and complete her transformation. Skye says ‘hell no’ and gives him one chance to leave or she’ll shoot. Cal agrees to that too, but as he’s leaving he informs Skye that her real name is Daisy and he’ll be there for her after she changes, because he’ll be the only one who understands. Then he runs off, still trailing sweat. Not dad of the year material!
Skye checks over Coulson, then breaks down in tears over the messed up family reunion. She promises she’ll make things right and heads into the tunnels to stop Raina from using the Diviner. Coulson says no, but she can’t hear him through his blood spattered lips gasping for air.
Agent33, confused and shaken by Whitehall’s death, comes across Ward, who was wearing body armor, so he’ll live. He promises that if she helps him get out of there, he’ll help her figure out what her next move is. As pick up lines go, it beats most of Craigslist!
Skye finds the drill and the empty box that contained the Diviner. So she heads into the tunnels, ’cause…yeah. DRAMA!
Down in the tunnels, Raina comes across Mac, who’s still alive and possessed by the city. She orders him to “Take me there,” and he leads her to the temple.
May and Coulson arrive at the drill and he decides to head down after Skye. Now it’s a party! May protests, but she’s ordered to stand guard and if he isn’t back soon, evacuate. She protests more and Coulson points out that after all the weird carving and chasing around the world, he really wants to know what the hell is going on in the dark, abandoned alien city. Ok then!
Trip and FitzSimmons finish planting the bombs and reach the tunnel entrance and radio in that they’re finished. Then May informs them Skye and Coulson are in the tunnels, so Trip heads back down, against the protests of FitzSimmons, to turn the bombs off. Lots of protesting this episode!
Skye catches up with the Diviner holding Raina in the temple. Raina’s intent on going through with the things, despite Skye asking her not to. Then the Diviner begins floating and places itself on a pedestal and begins glowing, while closing the temple doors.
Trip races around the tunnels, de-activating bombs! Coulson runs through tunnels holding a gun! He runs into Mac, but quickly defeats him! Then Trip arrives in the temple as the doors completely close, with Coulson stuck on the outside, banging on the door, with Mac right behind and looking for round 2.
Inside the temple, the Diviner splits open and strange crystals grow out of it and begin glowing. Then they emit a gas, which knock Trip, Skye and Raina off their feet. Skye and Raina begin to be covered in the black shell that has disintegrated others and they become frozen like statues. Trip looks on in horror as Skye is engulfed, screaming for help. The two become completely covered.
Outside the temple, Mac collapses to his feet, seemingly no longer being controlled. Inside, Trip screams “Nooo” in anguish as tears well in his eyes. Then the black goo begins covering him, radiating out from his chest. All three are frozen.
The statues of Skye and Raina begin to crack, as their bodies begin to move and break free. Skye flexes her body and all of the hardened goo explodes off her body as the temple begins to shake. It looks like she’s causing things to vibrate. Throughout the tunnels, things begin to shake and the subside. And it’s in Slo-mo, so it’s extra cool.
In the tunnel, Skye watches in horror as the statue of Trip is broken apart by the vibrations and crumbles. He’s dead! RIP Trip!
Cut to a darkened room, as we see a man enter a living room and notices a glowing box. He opens it and reaches inside and pulls out another Diviner. It’s glowing with the alien symbols, as the other one did. He quickly pulls out his cellphone and places a call. A woman answers and the man says “Are you seeing this? There’s someone new. Tell the others I’m on it.” It’s only then that we see has no eyes! Where they should be is just smooth skin.
That’s it! See you back in March when the show starts new, but in the meantime, Agent Carter begins on January 6th!
Did we like it?? Well with all the hype we hoped to see a special appearance from Rocket and Groot but alas… On it’s own merits this episode was pretty great. It answered some question, made more questions and dragged our plot and characters kicking and screaming, into the future. It will be interesting to see the changes ensue in the SHIELD team and we look forward to seeing how all this gets tied in with the summer movies.
What is Skye now? The show has been pondering this since the first episode and I’m not longer interested in wondering, especially with her gaining powers. Although she is clearly Special, we look forward to seeing how this integrates into the show that was designed to show off the non-special SHIELD agents. We do wonder how the Diviner would have dealt with Coulson. It looked like it would have left Trip alone, except for the shard of crystal that lodge in his chest when he broke it.
And yes we know that Cal is ‘Hyde’ and Skye/Daisy is ‘Quake’. But so far Agents of SHIELD has not traded on superpower/superhero names. Except for May. ‘Cause the Calvary is awesome and you don’t get in the way of that.
What’s Bobbi up to? No idea. Seriously, not a clue, other than Mac knows about it and…nope, that’s all. No real hints. The two most obvious things seem to be working for Hydra/herself and out for artifacts. Or maybe she’s a Fury ‘spy’ tracking Coulson the way May was last season? Fury is rumored to be a control freak.
Ward’s next move? He has a very compliant follower in NotMay. All bets say he’ll start something of his own that isn’t Hydra or SHIELD related, but able to work with either, depending on what he thinks the benefits are. Can we call it Ward 33 and invite all the crazy ex-agents to that party?
Is Whitehall really dead? We saw him shot several times and the body, but it’s not definite. We still don’t know the extent of his immortality, so it’s possible he’ll be back. No body confirmation, no death certificate!
Is Trip really dead and more important, did Skye and her new powers accidentally kill him by shaking apart his statute? Of course, this will affect Skye and the acceptance of her new powers, ’cause that was a high cost of admission. Will Simmons forgive Skye?
What’s Raina? We didn’t get to see her powers yet, but she’s alive and definitely Special. And although she always switching from team to team, will she now as a stronger Raina, finally be her own team?
Who is no eyed man and his friends? Do they all have Diviners? How many of those are there? Are there some more loose in the world? Did Cal know what they were really for and just lie about them? What will happen to the City and Temple now that SHIELD thinks the Diviner is gone?
New Rules for the Agent Handbook:
Don’t go into the tunnels!
Stay outta rooms with very special people and mysterious devices
Never turn your back on the enemy!!
Always pack a hazmat suit!
Think fast and use cloud cover.
Agent Trip was awesome. We will miss him!