“Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” recap (2.1): It’s Xena, bitch

Previously on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Agent Coulson was appointed Director Coulson over a teensy-tiny new version of S.H.I.E.L.D. that wasn’t infiltrated by a zillion Hydra spies. This, after: Ward betrayed S.H.I.E.L.D., dropped Fitz and Simmons into the bottom of the ocean, manipulated the shiz out of Skye, murdered his own dog, and was finally beaten the heck down by Malinda May, who chided him for being weak and dumb and a lazy lay. So now S.H.I.E.L.D. is fighting Hydra and running from the U.S. government with only a couple of dollars in their pocket and like a treehouse for HQ.


In the waning days of World War II, Agent Carter(!) and the Howling Commandos busted up a Hydra outpost in Austria, arresting Daniel “Kraken” Whitehall and boxing up all his little supernatural doodads, including an Obelisk that killed all the non-Hydra guys and that blue alien that provided the Jesus Juice that will bring Coulson and Skye back to life in the future. Jim Morita and Dugan are like, “This stuff seems pretty terrifying” and Agent Carter is all, “Hopefully one day there will be a warehouse in Nowhere, South Dakota operated by a lesbian Secret Service agent and her time-traveling girlfriend where all of these artifacts can be kept safe. In the meantime, let’s turn them over to S.H.I.E.L.D.”

The Kraken says if they cut off Hydra’s tentacles, two more will grow in its place, and that’s just fine with Agent Carter because she’s got a TV show coming in 2015 and she needs somebody’s ass to kick.


Present day. Melinda May and Skye (who has traded her doe eyes for bangs and is now 100 percent hardcore) are doing spy stuff in an elevator shaft in a random warehouse while Isabelle “Xena” Hartley and two companions try to buy the only Level 10 0-8-4 in S.H.I.E.L.D.’s inventory from a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent who has defected and is now selling off artifacts willy-nilly to the highest bidder. It’s all haggle-haggle-haggle and then Crusher Creel waltzes up in there and beats the hell out of everybody, absconding with the 0-8-4 secret file. Skye and May swoop in to save Isabelle Hartley from getting shot, so now everyone is out in the open and the package is gone and Absorbing Man is on the loose. Coulson’s solution, from HQ: “Go dark.”


Back at HQ, Billy says Coulson’s only got time for May.

May: You are in charge of the earth’s mightiest heroes, but I’m in charge of you, which means I’m the most powerful woman on the planet. But you already knew that.
Coulson: Sorry I haven’t checked in. I’ve been jetting around the world — in economy, by the way, which is just full of gross people who don’t wear shoes — trying to recruit new S.H.I.E.L.D. helpers.
May: How’s that going?
Coulson: Shitty. Everyone has defected to Hydra or the private sector or they’re too scared to join up. How was it working with Agent Hartley?
May: Whatever, she’s a mercenary. A good guy and a badass, but a mercenary. Creel stole the info on that tech we were trying to buy and also I haven’t been able to procure a cloaking device for the bus.
Coulson: Whoa, this 0-8-4 was the Original 0-8-4. Must have this Precious.
May: Call me “Precious” again and I will break your face.
Coulson: No, I mean “Precious” like from Lord of the Rin—never mind, we need to get our hands on this.