Aug 17, 2021
Agents of SHIELD Recap: Thank God For Asgard
So last week on Agents of SHIELD, Coulson figured out he might be dead but of course we’re not going to start off this week with it. Instead, we get a tease that this might be another Avengers-related episode as it tells us about Asgard and Thor and maybe it sorta kinda is?
FitzSimmons and Grant are cleaning up debris in Greenwich University in England. This must be post-Thor 2 debris? Oh, hush. That’s not a Thor 2 spoiler. Some things get smashed up in different locations in Thor 2. No big surprise there. They’re sifting through the rubble to make sure nothing alien hung about.
All the puny humans are fussy about cleaning up after Thor because gods leave such a mess.
Now we’re off to a nature preserve in Norway. You guys, we are 3 minutes into this episode and there is nary a SHIELD plane in sight. Is this a record?
Norwegian hikers are doing something mysterious that involves cutting down old growth trees in the forest. Whatever mysterious thing this is, it’s kind of dickish.
Oh. It’s because they’re some sort of Norse alien something-or-other inside it.
Still. Kinda lame. The metal Norse something or other turns the treecutter’s girlfriend into a superhero-strength monster of rage.
Wow. The SHIELDies are in Norway to check out the tree, but we did not get a shot of the plane taking them from England to Norway. Maybe they went by chunnel or train or some other fancy European mode of transport that doesn’t photograph well.
The metal stick in the tree was from Asgard SO WHY ISN’T THOR HERE HMMMM?? Treecutter and girlfriend are now rampaging across Oslo like gods. No, they literally think they are gods. Apparently there’s a big growth in Norse and pagan worship post Asgardians descend unto Earth and all that.
SHIELD personnel have to have a fight as to how the angry treecutters found the magic anger stick, so now it is time to head to Spain to talk to a prof Coulson knows who helped out with figuring out Thor’s magic hammer. Peter MacNicol plays the prof and he’s as soft-voiced and creepy as always.
Looks like the magic stick is the “Berzerker Staff” and it totes does give you super strength, but the treecutters only have a piece of it. MacNicol’s got a handy-dandy book of Norse mythology, which is actually now just Asgard history, that explains that a warrior left it on Earth because he fell in love with the Earth and stayed here, but he broke up the staff so that it couldn’t fall into the wrong hands.
Now we’re off looking for the pieces of the staff. Still no plane shots. They seem to be ON the plane every so often, but we never get an external shot of the thing flying somewhere. Did they run out of stock footage of planes flying?
Looks like Seville is a possible hotbed of Asgardian artifacts, so we’re all just randomly out with flashlights looking about in a cave somewhere. Grant runs across Peter MacNicol, who is holding another piece of the staff. See? Peter MacNicol is going to be creepy, we just know it. When Grant grabs the staff to take it away, instead of getting super rage strength, he gets horrible…premonitions? flashbacks? of someone drowning and then passes out. This part of the staff SUCKS.
MacNicol runs off with the his chunk of the staff and runs – LITERALLY BUMPS INTO – the treecutters of rage. Staff fight, everybody! MacNicol loses his chunk of the staff. Good job, professor. Time for you to get interrogated by Coulson in the weird hexagon room. Professor MacNicol says he had no nefarious purpose in mind but just had to be the first to get to the artifacts. We do not believe you because you are Peter MacNicol.
Apparently Grant is stuck with a big old chemical imbalance thanks to his staff fondling. Basically he’s getting a minor version of Hulked-up, and it’s making him a complete asshole. He keeps flashing back to the drowning thing while he murders a punching bag.
The treecutters have created an angry army to grab some staff and get all filled with rage-strength. They’re in a basement or some sort of other underground space, so it basically looks like fight club with sticks.
Since Grant has gone full-on angerbear Coulson sends him in to interrogate MacNicol and by interrogate we mean “try to stab.” MacNicol stops the blade and twists it into an unrecognizable mess because oh, snap! He’s Asgardian! Look at the plot twist on SHIELD, just like a real teevee show.
So MacNicol is the Asgardian warrior that stayed long ago. You guys, Peter MacNicol does not look like a Norse warrior. Chris Hemsworth looks like a Norse warrior. Tom Hiddleston looks like a Norse warrior. Even Anthony Hopkins looks like a Norse warrior. Weren’t any larger actors available for this part? He says he was a mason – a rockbreaker – back on Asgard so he was a natural fit for a warrior. PETER MACNICOL???
So the staff is a rare metal blah blah blah interacts with whoever is holding it of course. Basically, it brings out the worst in you. MacNicol tells SHIELD where they can find the last piece of the staff in Ireland and BOOM. We finally see the plane. About goddamn time.
Of course the angry treecutter god wannabees have gotten there first, and they stab MacNicol with his own staff, which requires Grant to grab the staff and get full-on maximum Hulk. Grant flings some of the angry wannabe gods around while still having flashbacks to the drowning incident. Looks like young Grant let a friend drown in a well in some sort of childhood initiation type thing. No wonder he’s trying not to think about that.
Now May’s going to get some staff super strength because apparently having everyone tough the thing and deal with their darkest secrets is a great plan.
All the rage gods are dead. MacNicol is alive. Grant and May are bonding over their staff touching. Coulson is busy fighting off the temptation to touch the staff. Coulson notes that MacNicol and he have a lot in common, because they’ve both been stabbed in the heart. STABBED IN THE HEART, PEOPLE. Coulson was killed, maybe. His memory after the incident is blank until he woke up a few months later. He decides not to touch the staff because we have to drag out the “what happened to Coulson” storyline for…what do you think? End of season?
Skye-Grant bonding time. His flashback was about his brother. Dude, you let your own brother drown? That’s some fucked-up shit to have done and some fucked-up shit to just be not thinking about. He bails out on talking to Skye and heads up to talk to May and the enormous bottle of liquor that May is toting around. Good choice.
Coulson’s in some tropical paradise, the Tahiti we’ve heard so much about, getting a massage from a beautiful girl. They agree that it is a magical place, which is what you have to say on this show anytime Tahiti is mentioned and Coulson jerks awake, full-on cold sweat, and end scene.
Coulson you are prolly a robot or you are something even worse so best to take the Grant method and just stop thinking about it. SHIELD, you were actually kinda sorta OK this episode because there was very little Skye and very much Thor/Asgard, so please keep that up kthx. See you next week.