I was in tears late in this week’s episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. Mostly over Coulson visiting Mrs. Triplett, and trying to comfort her while still dealing with his own grief, and also visibly hardening, juxtaposed with first May’s speech about Trip, S.H.I.E.L.D., and Hydra, and then what he was causing to happen. This show isn’t just getting angstier, it’s also getting darker still, and not just universe-wise.
We’ve always known, of course, that Coulson can be ruthless when he feels he has to be. But the master manipulation he pulls off here, and the brutal murders he tricks Hydra into doing, takes that to a whole knew level. That he and S.H.I.E.L.D. keep their hands clean of all but one straight clean shooting kill almost makes it feel nastier, especially since they knew Hydra wouldn’t make it clean like that. It makes you wonder how much he’ll do, especially considering everything we know is coming up. Will Skye clearly becoming such a danger to those around her, two of his people running around behind his back and possibly engineering a terrible betrayal indeed, or Skye’s father apparently planning to gather a whole bunch of villains up to attack S.H.I.E.L.D. together push him or someone else with the organization to cross the line?
Simmons might be the biggest candidate there right now. If this week’s episode hit a strange note, it’s probably the extent to which she has suddenly turned so zealously against all things super-related. Although that’s arguably less a problem with the writing in this episode than with the lack of work done with her since she’s come back from Hydra. When one considers the kind of scientists she spent months around, even posed as one of, and how much they no doubt prized new knowledge and discovers over even the safety of the human race at large, it doesn’t seem quite to implausible losing Trip and then seeing Raina turn into a monster and slice up several more people might put her into the deep end. Which makes it all the more tragic, perhaps, that without realizing it she’s starting to stray close to those she infiltrated in her beliefs. It may be painful how she’s clearly heading for a huge breach with Skye as well as Fitz if something doesn’t give, but honestly? If she stays this close-minded person for long, it’ll probably hurt a hell of a lot less than everything else Fitzsimmons in this season has.
But ah, Fitz. I nearly teared up again when it became clear he could accept Skye, he could support her, and he could even lie to the woman he may still be in love with because he knows his friend needed him to. Simmons once said he was the hero, and it’s starting to look like in the second half of this season, he might be more of one than anyone else around him. Maybe starting as early as next week.