Agents of SHIELD, you disappoint me


The first episode of AGENTS OF SHIELD was passable but the followup was downright boring. For one thing, the rebels coming out of the jungle with their machine guns? Dull. If you want me to give a shit about the rebels, they need to be capturing one of the team, hopefully someone that matters. Even better, one of the bad guy soldiers so there’s actual conflict regarding the Mysterious Device. Making it about a coup in a country we don’t know anything about is boring.

But I’m sure the jungle set was limited and the plane set was already there, so they moved the action into the bottle.

Anyway, Coulson continues to be fun and interesting (Note: when punched in the face he bled red blood, so I’m losing hope that he’ll become the Vision).

Here’s a list of things I’m already over:

    Ward insisting he’s a solo operative who blah blah blah.
    May’s secret past and her unwillingness to kung fu a bunch of people even though she totally does.
    Science geeks enthusing about science.
    Anything regarding team dynamics.
    Skye and her secret group.
    The make-believe that Coulson is fooled by Skye’s willingness to work with him. Is there anyone who doesn’t recognize that he’s using her to expose and ruin Rising Tide?
    Destroying powerful resources that would be useful in the next alien invasion, like, say, launching a death ray into the sun.

Things I want more of:

    Conflicts that direct outward. When the stakes of a show are high I don’t want to see squabbling. Fire the squabblers and bring in new people.
    People with superpowers. Pilot ep, yay. Weird device in the second ep, boo.
    A sense of actual changes to the world in the wake of an alien invasion. Politics. Culture. Show me what’s changed.
    Characters from the Marvel Comics setting.

About that last thing: I realize that Whedon has said he’s not going to turn the show into an Easter Egg hunt for fans of the comics. And he’s right not to do that. You don’t build a successful TV show by driving fan discussion into obscure trivia. If your Twitter hashtags are full of people talking about how some minor character in the second act is Jonathon Hart who would later become Jack of Hearts, you’re not getting a second season.

However, that doesn’t mean the show should use generic death rays and villains cribbed from the Marvel U movies. The comics are full of wacky, interesting ideas from five decades. Many of them aren’t appropriate for this setting and many can’t be done in a TV budget, but for god’s sake rummage around in that treasure chest and pull out something good because death rays and South American coups are not making full use of the property and it’s not going to cut it.