Last week’s episode of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., titled 'Melinda,' primarily explored Melinda May’s (Ming Na Wen) history and how she came to be known as “The Cavalry.” Meanwhile, at the secluded Inhumans village, Jaiying (Dichen Lachman) revealed herself to be Skye’s (Chloe Bennet) mother and Lincoln (Luke Mitchell) discovered that Raina’s (Ruth Negga) Terrigenesis-granted powers extend beyond her physical transformation to include precognition.
Other story threads included Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) and May working to discover what Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) has been hiding from them and Robert Gonzalez’s (Edward James Olmos) “real” S.H.I.E.L.D. while Leo Fitz (Iain de Caestecker) attempted to reunite with Coulson and Lance Hunter (Nick Blood).
On this week’s episode, “The Frenemy of My Enemy,” Coulson teams up with Grant Ward (Brett Dalton) and Agent 33 (Maya Stojan) to use Hydra’s knowledge of powered people and track down Skye. At the Inhumans village, Jaiying has decided Skye’s father Cal (Kyle MacLachlan) must go home to Milwaukee, but Skye worries about Cal’s reaction to the news.
1. Tentative Alliances
Coulson and his small team, consisting of Fitz, Hunter and Deathlok (J. August Richards), enlist Ward and Agent 33 to help infiltrate Hydra and learn what the organization knows about the Inhumans. Ward and Agent 33 send Deathlok and the brainwashed Hydra agent Sunil Bakshi (Simon Kassianides) to Dr. List (Henry Goodman), who has worked with Wolfgang von Strucker (Thomas Kretschmann) on powered people - particularly the Maximoff twins (more on this below).
In order to convince Ward to work with him, Coulson offers the former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent a clean slate through the T.A.H.I.T.I. project, which would wipe his memories. However, Ward later reveals to Agent 33 that Coulson will help the pair reach their own end game. Whether Ward and Kara’s goal is to live a simple life (with some nice plants in the windowsill) or something else remains to be seen, but given Ward’s track record, he’ll likely uphold his side of the alliance with Coulson so far as it serves his own needs.
2. Hydra Experiments
During “The Frenemy of My Enemy,” it was revealed that Hydra is continuing to conduct experiments on Inhumans and have discovered a way of tracking Gordon (Jamie Harris) through his power, which they explain as “quantum entanglement.” Hydra’s experiments continue to be deadly to those Inhumans involved, which raises flags to Gordon and Jaiying who notice that a member of their community doesn’t return from his camping trip.
Previously, Hydra’s understanding of the Inhumans surpassed that of S.H.I.E.L.D. since they have been studying their powers for much longer. However, we have since learned the origins of the Inhumans through Skye’s transformation and education in their village. Now that Hydra has captured Lincoln, more may be revealed about their knowledge - or lack thereof - of the Inhumans and what the organization wishes to gain from the powered individuals.
3. Father-Daughter Date
Skye disagrees with Jaiying’s decision to have Gordon leave Cal in Milwaukee without an explanation and asks for permission to go with her father in order to break the news to him gently. Unbeknownst to either Skye or Cal, Jaiying sends Lincoln after them to guard Skye. The outing ends in violence, though, as Hydra - followed by Coulson’s team - attempts to locate Gordon and finds the father and daughter pair instead.
Before it was confirmed, we speculated that Skye and her father could be the characters Daisy Johnson and Calvin Zabo known from Marvel Comics. In the midseason 2 finale, it was revealed that Skye was, in fact, Daisy Johnson, who becomes the seismic-powered Quake. Now, in this episode, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. gave a nod to Cal’s other name and established his last name as “Johnson” (on the door of his office), confirming Skye’s true identity as Daisy Johnson.
4. Meanwhile, at “Real” S.H.I.E.L.D.
May and Simmons are still at the bunker, now run by Gonzalez’s S.H.I.E.L.D., and attempting to discover what Coulson has hidden on Nick Fury’s Toolbox. However, Simmons reveals to May that she switched the box and gave the real one to Fitz. May, in turn, spins the story to Bobbi, claiming Fitz stole it. Additionally in “The Frenemy of My Enemy,” Bobbi points out to Mack (Henry Simmons) that Coulson isn’t the enemy of S.H.I.E.L.D., rather Hydra is.
With trust tentatively being rebuilt between Bobbi, May and Simmons, as well as the reminder that they should be fighting the rogue organization, it seems that this episode is laying the groundwork for Coulson’s S.H.I.E.L.D. and Gonzalez’s S.H.I.E.L.D. to unite against Hydra.
5. Coulson Surrenders
“The Frenemy of My Enemy” ends with Coulson surrendering to Bobbi and Mack, who arrive to investigate Hydra’s attack on the team after Simmons hacked into Deathlok’s system. Coulson’s plan to use Hydra to track Skye has failed as Gordon arrived to take her back to the Inhumans village before they could talk.
With Coulson’s resources exhausted - since forming an alliance with Ward didn’t pan out - he has turned to his last resort: Gonzalez and “real” S.H.I.E.L.D. However, Coulson’s surrender prompts many questions about the trajectory of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as the show heads into its final season 2 episodes. For instance, how will Coulson - and his team - fit into the new organization? Or will they go their separate ways after dealing with Hydra?
A few other observations and notes:
- Fitz and Ward were reunited for the first time since Fitz confronted the former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent earlier this season. The reunion was not friendly, to say the least.
- Previously, Lincoln has mainly demonstrated his powers in front of Skye in benign ways, but in this episode we got to see the Inhuman fight with his static electricity. Hopefully, we’ll see more of the Inhumans in action this season on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Share your thoughts on "The Frenemy of My Enemy" and theories on the upcoming episodes in the comments below!
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns next Tuesday with "The Dirty Half Dozen" @9PM on ABC.
"The Dirty Half Dozen" - Gonzales and Coulson must find a way to put their differences aside and work together against Hydra, even if it means teaming up with someone they don't trust, on "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.," Tuesday, April 28 (9:00-10:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.
"Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." stars Clark Gregg as Director Phil Coulson, Ming-Na Wen as Agent Melinda May, Brett Dalton as Grant Ward, Chloe Bennet as Agent Skye, Iain De Caestecker as Agent Leo Fitz, Elizabeth Henstridge as Agent Jemma Simmons, Nick Blood as Lance Hunter and Adrianne Palicki as Bobbi Morse.
Guest starring are Henry Simmons as Alphonso "Mack" Mackenzie, Ruth Negga as Raina, Henry Goodman as Dr. List, J. August Richards as Deathlok/Mike Peterson, Kyle Maclachlan as Cal, Edward James Olmos as Robert Gonzales, Jamie Harris as Gordon, Christine Adams as Agent Weaver, Mark Allan Stewart as Agent Oliver, Maya Stojan as Kara/Agent 33, Dichen Lachman as Jiaying, Luke Mitchell as Lincoln Campbell and Chad Cleven as Hydra tac agent.
"The Dirty Half Dozen" was written by Brent Fletcher & Drew Z. Greenberg and directed by Kevin Tancharoen.