I kind of skipped last week so… Double Feature!
Not a ton happening in this episode though it leads right into a set up for Episode 5 and there’s a few good action bits. The first comes right out of the gate with a halfway decent Car chase through LA between Robbie’s Charger and Coulson’s classic Corvette Lola. It’s not quite a movie level chase but it’s more than you usually see on a TV show. The chase ends with Robbie crashing into a cloaked Quinjet and being taken into custody.
Coulson and Robbie chat a bit and Coulson recruits him, somewhat unwillingly to the team.
Meanwhile Daisy has tricked Simmons into meeting with her by manipulating Simmons into visiting an apartment for rent. Daisy is trying to convince Simmons that the Watchdogs have infiltrated SHIELD’s database of Inhuman locations and they discover that next ont he list is our old friend James, the fire powered Inhuman that had been working for Hive in the last season. Turns out he’s been working, somewhat ironically, in a Fireworks shop for a bit now.
He mostly just wants to move on, though he’s not overly happy with his lot in life, or his Inhuman transformation through Terrigenesis.
We also get a bit more insight into Skye’s (sorry DAISY’s) motivation. She and James have a little bonding moment about how Hive’s Sway control kind of f’d up their minds. It kind of helps explain a bit more how she has suddenly done this crazy gothy 180 on SHIELD I suppose. I still feel like it’s a bit extreme, she was under Hive’s control but I don’t recall her doing anything super duper Terrible. James ont he other hand, was pretty much Hive’s fire spewing enforcer. Though he also wasn’t a particularly nice person to start with even before going through Terrigenesis.
Unfortunately, he’s still not a nice person, because he’s working with the Watchdogs to eradicate the Inhumans. Daisy is too injured to be much use against the Watchdogs and Simmons is, Simmons, so they run as best they can and hide. Fortunately, Coulson and his crew show up with the help of Ghost Rider.
What follows is a pretty rad confrontation between Hellfire (James) and Ghost Rider. Rad because they both have a very similar basic power, that is, they burn things and use them as weapons, and are both pretty much immune to fire. Rad also because they are in the middle of a Fireworks shop, with expected results. Ghost Rider captures James and they all head off in the Bus for the next mission…
Episode 5 is considerably more focused on it’s plot, as well as it’s location. So far, most of the episodes have been very scattered in where the player are located, between SHIELD base and Miami, and LA. This episode sees most of the primary players all brought together at last as they infiltrate a Prison to rescue Robbie’s uncle. His Uncle is in prison for beating a man into a coma, a man who, along with the uncle himself, was involved in the accident that created the Ghost characters that we saw earlier in the season. I’m actually getting a little irritated with the mystery around the Ghosts, I like mystery, but so far they are still kind of a complete mystery, not even any real clues as to how it’s all connected.
So retrieving a prisoner would normally be a no brainer for a government agency like SHIELD, except that our friendly Ghost has gotten there first and started infecting people, including the Warden, with the Fear Plague (or whatever you want to call it). This includes several of the prisoners and guards as well. Top it all off with a whole mess of Watchdogs grunts being kept int he prison as well and you have a nice little pile of kindling to spark a real mess of a conflagration (Aye fire puns for Ghost Rider). Conveniently, Fitz has developed an inject-able cure for the Fear, so there isn’t any need to kill anyone else like with Agent May.
Anyway, there is a brief set up but most of the episode is action packed racing and combat in the prison facility. Daisy gets to really strut her stuff this episode against a gang of Watchdogs as well, and interestingly enough, does it without using her powers at all, despite now being equipped with stabilizing gauntlets again to help keep her from breaking her arms. She handles her own but ultimately needs a save from Coulson and May. I’m starting to feel bad for her a bit, she keeps ending up bruised and bloodied either from her own abilities or whomever she is up against. It’s also a routine that’s getting a little old. I miss cheery fun Skye….
Meanwhile Mack and Robbie are working on rescuing Robbie’s Uncle. They face off against a couple of the Ghost people and Mack gets to use the cure on himself to stop himself from going crazy. It will be interesting to see if these previously infected people end up having some other angle come up later, either a relapse or maybe some general immunity.
Robbie ends up abandoning his Uncle to deal with an inmate who was part of the gang responsible for crippling his brother, an obvious boneheaded move that he was warned against doing earlier in the show. And of course the Uncle gets taken by the Ghost and the whole mission ends up blown.
There’s a few unclear moments in this episode that seem to exist entirely to build artificial tension. One, Daisy gets locked in the cafeteria with the Watchdogs, with Coulson and May right on the other side of the door, the door with glass windows. Yet Coulson and May have to go through this elaborate mess of a plan to get in the back door to rescue Daisy. I didn’t really get why they couldn’t just reopen the door, or just blast through it, this is SHIELD, at a minimum Coulson has a robot hand that could surely shatter through the glass door.
Then later when Robbie and Mack are separated, I’m not sure why they split up at all, especially with Mack seeming pretty concerned about trusting Robbie at all. Before the mission there is this big to-do about how Ghost Rider can’t be unleashed in the prison because “everyone deserves vengeance of some kind” in prison (Ghost Rider essentially will only harm bad people). Yet, here we are at a critical junction leaving Robbie alone with the target.
There is also this sub plot about how Simmons is getting uneasy about all of the secret she is being made to keep and how she has to take regular lie detector tests (yet it seems like no one else needs to). Her test gets interrupted by the new Director who wants her to help him out with a TV interview involving the mysterious Anti Inhuman Senator that has been popping up this season. During the interview the Director reveals that he is Inhuman himself. The most interesting, or more, annoying, part here, is that this will be another event that the Movies will ignore, because EVERY THING IS CONNECTED… ONLY NOT. Simmons then blackmails the Director with some sort of bad info on his past into getting out of ever having to take the Lie Detector tests again. Then the Senator also blackmails him using footage of Ghost Rider incinerating that Gang Inmate earlier. This poor Director seems to have all sorts of dirt floating around.
There’s not been any more word on who the Inhuman we saw who was the Senator’s brother. She seems to want to wipe out or lock up the Inhumans, but she also seems to have her brother’s husk just sort of laying around. The Senator has made a return though in force, so hopefully we’ll get more answers on this angle soon.
I’m still holding out for a possible Ward return, either by Ghostly means or by Life Model Decoy means. Robot Ward could be pretty rad and it would sort of fit with him doing these almost 100% transformations each season to return as the villain.
There’s still some questions about the Watchdogs as well. SHIELD hits people with their non-lethal ICER stun bullets, and they’ve surely taken enough Watchdog grunts in that they could have gotten somewhere in interrogating them by now. Protecting Humans and Inhumans is only their entire job after all, they’ve got to be putting a lot of resources into these guys. Especially with their Inhuman director.
Speaking of the Director, what mysteries is he holding in his past anyway?