The Ninjabot

What the Heck is “The Bridge”? – Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Review

Posted on December 11, 2013 at 9:07 pm by Amanda Andonian

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This week’s episode of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. saw the return of former-Centipede experiment, Michael, as he lends his unique talents to the team while they try to track down the big bad guy. Who is it this time? That guy that Raina was talking to in prison way back in “The Girl in the Flower Dress.” Apparently his name is Edison Po, and he’s a military badass of some sort. Why is he important? Turns out Centipede wants him to train and lead their super-soldiers.

Still don’t care? Yeah, me neither. But apparently, S.H.I.E.L.D. cares a lot, and the team is tasked with tracking Po down and bringing him back to justice.

Despite the fact that the show has been building up Centipede to be the major antagonist of the show, they’re really not all that interesting or sinister when you get down to it. They operate in the shady shadows, and they do kill someone every once in a while, but they mostly stay out of the way. Give me a serious villain who’s actually messing shit up! I think the real problem is that we have no idea what Centipede’s motivations are. Sure, they’re breeding their own super-soldiers, but then what? Wreak havoc? That’s not in the least bit compelling.

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On top of that, Raina and Po as villains were incredibly stiff and lacking in any menace whatsoever. Po was clearly written as a calm, collected man whose every quiet word is supposed to strike fear into the hearts of his underlings. However, he instead comes off as whiny and high-maintenance, refusing to rise from his chair until a soldier calls him “sir.” Raina is worse, if that’s possible, and her blatantly obvious attempts at seducing Po are awkward and embarrassing.

Not even May and Ward’s weird colleagues-with-benefits dynamic has managed to stay interesting. Part of that may have to do with the fact that Ward himself is boring, but the show is also just treading over the same well-worn interoffice romance conflicts we’ve seen so many times before. Ward gets a little too flirty in the office! May gets annoyed. Ward tries to protect her in a fight! May takes him to task for not keeping his head in the game. Been there, done that.

As each subsequent episode comes and goes, I’m more and more convinced that Fitz and Simmons are the only part of the show that’s worth watching. Where Ward’s “he’s standing right behind me, isn’t he?” joke is clichéd, and Po’s faux tough-guy-ness just comes off as petulant, every single line that Fitz-Simmons said delighted me in some way. Their interactions with Michael in the lab were particularly wonderful, actually eliciting an audible laugh from me. Everything else, however, was just blah blah blah.

Last, and most certainly least, Skye’s crusade to find her parents still fails to be engaging. When May tells her off for spending too much time digging into it, there’s no feeling of indignation for Skye being treated so badly. Still the most annoying member of the team, I’d count it a blessing if Skye were kicked off the plane. All she does is Google shit anyway!

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. continues to be a rather banal hour of television. We’re halfway through the season, and the characters are only marginally more fleshed out than they were at the start. Perhaps it’s expecting too much, but with such a rich world as the Marvel Universe at their disposal, I sort of expect to see a little more from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Oh, and it’s called “The Bridge” because the denouement happens on a bridge. Real clever, guys.

The Bridge – C

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Season 1 Episode 10, “The Bridge,” aired on ABC December 10th, 2013 at 8/9c.

You can follow Amanda on Twitter at @reiko516.

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