Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Battle Royale With Cheese

Sometimes I feel like a broken record, but sometimes the facts have a repetitive bias: This show doesn’t brake for no one. A common criticism of those who stopped watching way back in the simpler times of Season One was that the show was too slow. Well, that time was spent building the framework (!!!) for what was to come. Since Turn, Turn, Turn, this show has taken few, if any breaks. SHIELD remained true to form this week with the introduction of a potential spoilery character, Earth(s), and some mysterious beings.

SPOILERS BEYOND THIS POINT! IF YOU KEEP READING, IT’S ALL ON YOU, BUB!

Last week, we all assumed that the white and red monolith transported the team into the future at least 90 years. That idea was reaffirmed by the team’s awesome simultaneous realization that they weren’t just in space, but on the last bits of Earth itself, and Fitz’s handwritten note on the back of a vintage Lake Ontario post cast indicating that he was “working on it.”

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However, that idea got turned on its head with Star Prince (and overall asshole) Deke referenced the Multiverse, an idea that was hinted at in Ant-Man and Dr. Strange, but hadn’t been named in the MCU as of yet. Daisy somewhat brushed it off by smacking him in the face (and gloriously asking which universe that happened in), but I have a feeling he’s on to something.

What if that white and red monolith did not send them forward in space, but rather sideways in dimensions? Last season SHIELD dealt with ancient books and magic and alternate realities, so it makes since that this season would jump right into inter-dimensional travel. We all assumed that it was setting up a futuristic space angle to explain what happens after Thanos comes to town, but maybe they’re setting up a different Thanos angle: Multiple realities. Maybe this is some universe where the timeline is shifted 90 or so years in the future, with other changes we don’t know about. Apparently Deke and Kasius believe Quake, Destroyer of Worlds (fuck yeah) destroyed (this) Earth, and what if they’re right, here?

Maybe this isn’t so much about the team trying to get back to prevent this from happening as it is about the team saving this version of humanity from a darker fate?

1. Apparently there are people on or near the surface of the Earth that were communicating with Virgil. Virgil would travel to “object 616" (MORE MULTIVERSE REFERENCES WOOOOOOO) to listen in, but they weren’t on Object 616, the signal bounced off of Object 616.

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These people knew who the team was, and were broadcasting, asking if Virgil (RIP) had “the delegation.” I assume given the pace of this season that the team will make it to the surface in the next episode. I bet the people stuck on the surface (or in their own bunker system separate from the Kree one) are working with our bald skin-suit delivery guy, and lifted our team to help out in another dimension.

Which leads me to one of the pictures on creep-o’s fridge: The body with multiple bodies in it. Maybe that drawing has something to do with the multiverse, with each body representing a different universe, all within one overreaching Multiverse?

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2. Star Prince Asshole Deke may have been an asshole in this episode, but some of the best lines came from him. From noting that the Earth went from smooth to chunky to completely seriously indicating that the SHOE GUY KNOWS ALL, I was torn between laughing at his wit and wanting to punch his stupid face. By the end of the episode, I knew which way I was leaning, though.

3. Some of the continuity between the shows and movies is pretty impressive, no matter your opinion on how much they overlap. Throughout this episode, humans were called Terrans, which is what humans are called throughout the cosmos in the MCU. Hell, even Star Lord calls himself a Terran, thanks to Yondu and his hungry band of Ravagers. It’s nice to see the little details line up.

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4. Speaking of Yondu, last week, I mentioned a similarity between Yondu’s Yaka Arrow and the Stress Balls (hehe) of Doom fondled by Sinara. Yondu’s arrow was Centaurian technology, and he could control the arrow with his mind, heart, and a catchy tune. Those floaty balls seem to be based on or are similar to the same technology. Given that Jemma’s mute button was installed in her brain with no obvious external indicators, it’s possible that Sinara’s ability to control those balls are embedded deep within, as well.

I noticed another similarity between the show and Yondu this week: Battle slaves. In Guardians of the Galaxy, Yondu reveals that he was abducted as a kid and conscripted as a Kree Battle Slave. Traditionally in the comics, the Kree battle slaves were not just ordinary slaves, but enhanced or powerful beings that the Kree controlled. In SHIELD, Kasius and Lady Basha (more on her in a bit) were talking about the show that was about to begin, and Lady Basha indicated that her fighter had killed a bunch of people in a bunch of sectors. Given his getup before getting Reverse Flashed by Abby, he looked like he could have been a Battle Slave.

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Also, think about the Humans’ Terrans’ predicament: They were experimented on thousands of years ago by the Kree, who created the Inhumans. The Kree were interested in Terrans because, according to the comics, the Celestials had meddled with Terran DNA millions of years in the past, and the Kree noticed that fingerprint. The Inhuman program was shut down when Hive was created and the Inhumans, who were bread to be warriors for the Kree as battle slaves, became more hassle than they were worth. Now, thousands of years later, someone, be it Thanos of Quake, Destroyer of Worlds (I love that), destroyed Earth. The Kree, and specifically Kasius, moved in to take advantage and make some money off of their prior investment. Terrans may be feeble, but Inhumans aren’t.

So here we are, and Kasius, a slave trader, is keeping Terrans around for the sake of harvesting Inhumans. But for what? Underground fight clubs, no doubt. This is a traveling circuit of fights in the shadow of what the Grandmaster is was doing. Maybe the Kree government as a whole no longer considers the Inhumans a threat, (and it’s possible Kasius is running a racket and is keeping them on the down low) but there is money to be made by Kasius.

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3. Lady Basha has to be a Pink or White Kree, right? In the comics, the Blue Kree are the pure Kree, but are a minority nonetheless. Due to genetic fuckery, there are at least two or three different Kree “races,” including Pink. I think these are Pink Kree, who are a majority and in charge. Look at how Kasius bends of backwards to make Lady Basha, who he called “Your Excellency” feel welcome. Kasius might be the big dog on Earth’s chunky parts, but he is just another lower status Kree to Lady Basha.

Maybe that explains the white face for Kasius and Sinara? Are they using White Face to try to fit in with the higher level Pink Kree? Kasius seems to be all about status. How many other Blue Kree on this outpost have White Face?

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Another thing these Pink Kree could be doing is introducing the audience to the idea of different versions of the Kree, for when Captain Marvel comes out. Mar-Vell, who is being played by Jude Law in the movie, was a Pink Kree, and passable as a Caucasian Terran. These Pink Kree along with Lady Basha are mostly passable as Caucasians. #ItsAllConnected.

4. I mentioned Abby in passing earlier, but her powers were pretty cool. Abby could control the molecular density of her body, and become dense or intangible at a whim, once she learned how to control it. Did her powers remind you of anyone? Someone like MOTHER FUCKING VISION???

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It’s cool to see Vision’s powers manifesting in an Inhuman, even if it is 90+ years in the future and in another dimension.

5. Also, speaking of Abby: It was tough watching Jemma realize that she played a part in Abby’s sale by Kasius. If it wasn’t for Jemma, she wouldn’t have been so expensive.

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6. The line (exchange?) of the night was Mack telling the team they looked like a bunch of flailing hungry-hungry hippos, and Coulson saying he thought they looked cooler than that. Tops. I also hope that a running theme this season is Mack just knocking out any new and potentially dangerous people we meet.

7. SHIELD has had some awesome fight scenes throughout the years, and this episode was no different. Daisy taking on two Kree in the elevator after trying to be sneaky was freaking awesome. Last episode we saw Mack having trouble hurting the Kree with fisticuffs, but Daisy has a secret weapon, I believe. I think Daisy uses a bit of Quake power in each kick and hit, which would explain why she was able to do so much hand to hand damage on her own when Mack couldn’t. Hell of a fight scene, though.

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8. Abby wasn’t the only Inhuman we potentially got introduced to this week. We also met Flint, who was crashing in the Trawler until Tess kicked him out. Abby explained that every human gets exposed to Terrigen mist when they turn 18, and it seems like the purpose is to harvest fighters for Kasius’s financial gain. Flint may be too young, but just wait until he gets exposed. I have a feeling his powers are going to be the key to rebuilding Humanity after the team saves the day.

Flint is also known as Jaycen in the comics. Jaycen is an Inhuman with some very relevant powers: He can manipulate the Earth and environment around him, and can even control mountains (remember when Daisy was learning her powers in Afterlife and she controlled a mountain?) Jaycen can also cause fissures and manipulate dirt and soil and rock into specific shapes. He can also create a rock armor around himself, which grants him super strength.

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Jaycen is going to save Humanity, and his powers will be the key to rebuilding (quite literally) the Earth.

9. Why haven’t the Kree found the radio transmission from Earth yet? My guess? They aren’t even looking. Remember, the Kree are way more advanced than Terrans, and I bet they gave up on Radio many thousands of years ago. Also, Kasius doesn’t seem interested in anything beyond the group of Terrans under his control. Even if he found the transmission, would he dare investigate on the surface, where people are sent to die? Even though there is somewhat of an atmosphere, there are enough Vrellnexians, who eat Terrans and Kree alike, to dissuade anyone from venturing there.

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10. Yo Yo was fucking awesome this week, and seems to be the only one practicing “spycraft” on the team. Yo Yo ran around the room enough to convince their new boss that her metric was malfunctioning, and used the few seconds it was removed from her to (1) get a scroll to Daisy and (2) plant a gun on Zev. Mack just had a philosophical smackdown with Tess about murdering Zev, and Yo Yo went and got him killed anyway. Mack might be salty about it, but Yo Yo did two things: Protected the team from certain death, and established the team as trustworthy in LaRoche’s eyes. Now the team should have the access to the Trawler they need to get to the surface.

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