Since Hydra infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D. earlier this year and the show suddenly got amazing, the wait for Season Two of Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been absolutely excruciating – even more excruciating than the first half of Season One, in fact. But now, after this week’s Friday night premiere, it’s hard to believe the show was ever considered a flop.
The first scene of the season opener travels back in time to 1945 where, after the defeat of Red Skull, the Strategic Scientific Reserve (or the S.S.R.) march in, helmed by none other than Agent Peggy Carter, to arrest a group of Hydra operatives and retrieve their weapons and advanced technology. As well as setting up the episode – a present day villain with the ability to absorb what he touches tries to get his hands on one of the weapons, the Obelisk – it may well have created a starting point for Marvel’s next TV project Agent Carter too.
The new, shiny things don’t stop there. Time has passed since the Season One finale and Coulson’s team is expanding and growing more badass by the minute. It now includes Agent Isabelle Hartley (Lucy Lawless), Lance Hunter (Nick Blood) and Idaho (Wilmer Calderon), a few of which may not have made it the full hour to the end of the episode, but it will be fun to find out more about the surviving agents and learn what brought them to be working with what’s left of S.H.I.E.L.D.
The characters left over from the original Team Airbus are also back and better than ever. Skye and May seem to have bonded over their last mission and, as a result, spend most of episode one running around together in full spy kit being awesome. If all goes well, their newfound working relationship could be put to finding out who Skye’s parents were because we can’t wait much longer for that, we really can’t.
Also on top form were Fitz and Simmons, professional gadget makers and full-time heart breakers. Fitz is struggling not only to work but to talk after he almost drowned in Beginning. He forgets simple nouns and adjectives, and feels like the only person who doesn’t secretly pity him for it is Simmons, who stays by his side and is something of a comfort through it all. Honestly, it would be less painful to stick pins in both ventricles and be done with it than to watch Fitz feeling so vulnerable and Simmons being unsure of how to help him.
If S.H.I.E.L.D. continues in the way it’s been going, Season Two is guaranteed to be a blast. But as premiere episodes are often more lacklustre than finales, the only way the series can go is up. Whatever Marvel has in store for us is sure to be awesome.