Poor, McCafferty. You were dead the moment you were named. In my review for the season premiere, I discussed how the show seemed to be addressing one of my issues: namely, that for such a big organization, we barely ever met any other Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. besides our core cast. The reappearance of Agent Piper training with May seemed to be a step towards correcting that. Sadly, it looks like the show has just decided to start naming its redshirts before killing them. While Agent Piper is presumably still alive somewhere, Nathanson, McCafferty, and Burrows haven’t fared as well. It’s not a deal breaker by any means, but it’d be nice for this show to flesh out its ancillary ensemble a bit more. And speaking of Nathanson, why isn’t Radcliffe in more trouble?

Back before he joined the team, he was working with Hive. Even after that, he seemed to more or less be on probation given his questionable morals and motives. He almost immediately broke that trust by inventing the LMDs, but when Aida was revealed to Coulson and Mace, he essentially got a slap on the wrist. Last week, we saw his creation “go crazy” and attempt to steal the Darkhold, while also killing a government agent. Though the audience knows more of Radcliffe’s motives than the characters, he still looks pretty suspicious from the outside. If nothing else, he’s dangerously reckless. And yet, all the punishment he seems to have received for his gross negligence is a few days of house arrest. Even that seems to be more of a suggestion than an order. I hope the show addresses this very soon, as I’m worried they’re trying to ignore his culpability until his plan is revealed to our heroes.

May Bound and Drugged in "The Patriot"

I love John Hannah’s work as Radcliffe, so it’ll be sad if he has to leave the show once the jig is up. Now that both May’s are coming to, it doesn’t seem like that will be too far in the future. We know the show will eventually have a third arc separate from LMDs and Ghost Rider, so the next few episodes should see this whole plot start to come to a head. Though LMD May can still kick ass like the original, it was still great to see the real May break free from her bonds and take on Aida and Radcliffe. She couldn’t compete with Aida’s strength, but I don’t think this will be the last time she attempts a breakout. At least, I hope that’s the case. May has had very little agency this whole season thanks to her falling victim to both the Ghost Rider and LMD plot, so it’d be nice if she was able to rescue herself.

And then there’s the Patriot. It’s long been teased that he had a secret, and it seemed fairly obvious that it was him lying about Vienna. The actual truth of it was pretty silly, however. I didn’t see it coming that he wasn’t really an Inhuman, so that was a nice touch. It keeps him intact as a caring person and someone dedicated to the cause. The problem is the episode reveals that he has virtually no skills or qualifications to be the leader of S.H.I.E.L.D. I’m glad Coulson didn’t cave and say he was basically great at his job and should stay, cus he’s pretty terrible and has been from the beginning. He is good at the politics and glad-handing, though, so I’m more than happy with him managing the red tape while Coulson calls the shots but stays active in the field. It’s sort of a win-win for the plot and the viewer, as Coulson is always at his best when he’s mixing it up with the threats and other agents. Like most of this show’s dramatic reveals, it falls pretty flat versus our expectations, but at least it’s out of the way so we can move forward.


4 “Quake Is My Hero” Hoodies out of 5. Seriously, when do those go on sale?


  • According to IMDb, there was an Agent Davis in this episode who’s been in many of the episodes this season, so I guess he’s the exception to my rule. Sadly, I can’t really picture him in the context of any episode, but he does count as a recurring agent with a name. Interestingly, he originally appeared back in the Season 1 episode “Repairs” and then didn’t pop back up until the Season 4 premier.

  • Also, Simmons named her lab helper Agent Crawford so RIP in advance.

  • I guess that Judas bullet is the only Luke Cage reference we’re going to get. Pretty late and odd that they don’t seem to know what it is. Still, interesting to know those are still floating around. Wonder if we’ll ever see them in the movies?

  • Does Quake ever do the super jump in the comics? It’s a good addition to her roster of powers on the show, but I’ve never seen it on the page.

  • I keep getting Nathanson and Burrows mixed up, which made me think the latter was an LMD at first. Guess I won’t have that problem anymore.

  • Russians. Always causing trouble, amirite?

  • “We may have misjudged what it takes to keep Agent May comfortable.”

  • I had a feeling that if I didn’t mention “The Superior” last week, I’d hear about it in the comments. Given how much was going on in the midseason premier, I figured I’d save it until we had something more than the world’s most generic villain name (at least the Clairvoyant implied psychic powers). No news on that front this week, so still nothing to add.

  • Another thing I didn’t bring up last week was the Slingshot miniseries. What did y’all think of it? As a huge Yo-Yo fan, I thought it was a blast, and it looked pretty dang good to boot. I’m excited for Marvel to explore more alternative ways of telling narratives, especially as the real One Shots seem to be dead.