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TV Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. - Season 2 Ep 19 "The Dirty Half Dozen"

04.29.2015

EPISODE 19: "The Dirty Half Dozen"

SYNOPSIS:  Gonzales and Coulson must find a way to put their differences aside and work together against Hydra, even if it means teaming up with someone they don't trust,

BREAKDOWN: (The following column contains MAJOR SPOILERS, so I don't recommend reading this if you haven't watched this episode).

This week marks the debut of AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON in theaters around the world, so ABC is doing everything they can to market tonight's episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as a tie-in to the theatrical Marvel event. As it turns out, while this is a substantial episode from the series, it really is connected to AGE OF ULTRON aside from the references to HYDRA and The Twins. But, what really makes this episode stand out is that it is the first episode since the first season that reunites the original six team members: Coulson, May, Fitz, Simmons, Skye, and Ward.

With HYDRA having Deathlok and Lincoln in their possession, Coulson lobbies Gonzales and the S.H.I.E.L.D. leadership to allow him to take a small team into HYDRA's Arctic base to save the powered prisoners and destroy their facility once and for all. The vote is split and comes down to May who confronts Coulson about his lies and secret contact with her ex-husband. Coulson refuses to explain what Theta Protocol is but says he will explain everything after the mission and offers to open Nick Fury's Toolbox for Gonzales as well.

So, the team is back together. Ward gives an impassioned speech about regretting what he did to his teammates, but it falls on deaf ears as the team pulls together to complete their mission. They fake a crash of The Bus and infiltrate the base where Bakshi is waiting with the intel they need to proceed. As the team carry out their objectives, we get to witness one of the best Marvel action scenes outside of Daredevil as the team take down HYDRA. Skye demonstrates the new control of her power and even adapts it to serve as a defibrilator to save a flatlining Lincoln.

In other events, as Simmons works to save the injured Deathlok, she takes an opportunity and tries to kill Ward. Bakshi intervenes and ends up disintegrating. Ward holds his gun to Simmons but instead of killing her, he walks away. Coulson's ulterior motives become clear as he downloads files from the HYDRA mainframe and the team escapes with the powered prisoners in hand. Ward leaves on his own and calls Coulson and says Agent 33 deserves a second chance even if he doesn't. Deathlok's injuries are extensive but Fitz and Simmons begin working on new appendages for him. While the destruction of the base was a success, Dr. List escaped, but Coulson gets a call from Maria Hill and informs her of the location of Loki's scepter in Sekovia, the setting for the opening sequence of AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON.

Which ties into Raina's development. We learned in the last episodes that her Inhuman gift appears to be precognition. She uses it to inform Jiayiang and the residents of Afterlife of what is happening next and helps Skye go after Lincoln, but she is causing a rift in the leadership in the safe city. Jiayiang has her hands full with her daughter as well as Cal's outbursts, but when she confronts Raina, it causes a vision of Ultron's destruction and the promise that his actions will change the future forever.

In the end, we learn that Theta Protocol involves The Avengers, but exactly how is unknown. This was a damn good episode with great action and a payoff that makes it seem like a direct prequel to AVENGERS:  AGE OF ULTRON. How the events of the movie will change Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. remains to be seen, but with only two episodes to go and Joss Whedon's blockbuster opening, next week should be a doozy.

MARVEL CINEMATIC UNIVERSE REFERENCES: HYDRA's experimentation on powered people is referenced as is Baron Von Strucker. The Twins (Scarlet Witch and Quiksilver) are name checked as the sole viable results of HYDRA experimentation with Chitauri technology. Maria Hill makes a return appearance, as does Loki's scepter and Von Strucker's location at the start of AGE OF ULTRON. We also learn Theta Protocol involves the reunion of The Avengers.

NEXT ON MARVEL'S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D.:

Episode 20 "Scars" airs May 5th - Skye is torn between her loyalty to S.H.I.E.L.D. and her connection to the Inhumans as tensions rise between the groups — and Coulson reveals a secret he’s been hiding from even those closest to him.

Source: JoBlo.com

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