Television: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., "One of Us"

Are any of us actually worried S.H.I.E.L.D. will, like, do anything to Skye? No? Didn't think so. This sense of "peril" is manufactured and patently false, and therefore not at all compelling.

But I do like Blair Underwood as May's ex. How handy of him to be a psychiatrist and someone who has handled "gifteds" before. (I'm guessing this tangential relationship with S.H.I.E.L.D. is how he and May met?)

Meanwhile, Hunter is not dead, just chained to a bathroom sink in a safehouse. For an inordinate amount of time given that, at the end of the episode, Mac simply hauls Hunter down to yet another random set building and declares that he and Bobbi work for "the real S.H.I.E.L.D." Whatever, dude. I feel like the show is making things needlessly complicated. Like, tension is one thing. But just tossing a bunch of plots in the air and shouting, "Look at all this stuff going on!" is not the same thing as good writing.

Speaking of random, Skye's dad is still roaming around, trying to gather a force of pseudo-freaks who have bones to pick with S.H.I.E.L.D. These are other gifted people who S.H.I.E.L.D. felt the need to curb or clamp down on. Skye's dad lures Coulson to, what, his old high school football stadium? I'll say it again: Whatever, dude. Gordon (aka Reader?) pops in and takes Skye's dad away to what appears to be the room young Gordon was in when Skye's mom was trying to help him after his transformation. "You're not one of us," Gordon tells Skye's dad before leading him away to meet . . . Someone who will decide his fate, I guess. Geez, why didn't they do this earlier and save everyone some trouble?

Based on previews for next week, Edward James Olmos will be on hand as a rival S.H.I.E.L.D. leader. I suppose it's not out of the question that, when it all fell apart, various remnants of S.H.I.E.L.D. started their own chapters or factions or something. And now what? They'll fight one another for supremacy? Sigh.

On the whole, I like this show, but I find it very uneven. Some of it is very good and entertaining, and some of it . . . My mind wanders in the middle of it because it isn't as good or entertaining. They need to do a mite better at making me believe these characters might actually be in danger. It's not like Game of Thrones, where you really do feel anyone could go at any time. But maybe it ought to be. There are so many people to keep track of—maybe it's time to cull.

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