Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. S1 Ep13 – T.R.A.C.K.S.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. S1 Ep13 - T.R.A.C.K.S.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been doing a poor job keeping viewers interested. So much so that some producers and stars of the show have even come out recently and assured people that the series will improve. Now after a three-week hiatus Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is back with the episode “T.R.A.C.K.S.” and it is definitely a huge improvement. This week’s episode was one of the season’s best episodes so far.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. S1 Ep13 - T.R.A.C.K.S.

Simmons and Coulson undercover

“T.R.A.C.K.S.” places the team in an undercover mission on a train searching for a package that can lead them to Ian Quinn (David Conrad) who in turn has been working for The Clairvoyant. The format for “T.R.A.C.K.S.” is unique in comparison to past episodes as it shows the events of the same time period through the eyes of different characters. This format led to some nice surprises such as when Ward and Coulson find an already hot wired truck after having to jump from a moving train. Later in May’s story we see she was the one who actually hot wired the truck before they got there.

There’s a lot of neat action in this episode. Ward has a good fight scene against some of Quinn’s men on the train and May shows us how awesome she is when she escapes capture and beats up a room full of bad guys. In addition to some cool action, there were a lot of comedic moments in “T.R.A.C.K.S.” We got to see Fitz pull off an impressive American accent for his cover. Simmons goes over the top in her undercover role as Coulson’s estranged daughter. One of the funniest moments, though, was seeing Agents Ward and Coulson try to figure out the how to use the holographic computer interface Fitz and Simmons know so well. It’s scenes like these that I’ve been wanting to see more of in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Marvel Comics icon Stan Lee guest starred in this episode although it wasn’t as “big” as he had led it on to be  weeks ago. It was just another cameo. That being said he did have more lines than his usual Marvel movie role. His dialogue almost felt like meta-subtext on the state of the series itself when he tells Coulson “Now’s your chance to do better!”

The conclusion of the episode saw Skye get shot by Quinn after she discovers the package they were following was Mike Peterson (J. August Richards). While I did feel some sense of anguish for Skye being mortally wounded, it didn’t really hit me until I saw the reaction from her team, especially Simmons. Simmons, with the help of the rest of the team, manages to stabilize Skye until they’re able to get her the medical attention she needs. Simmons stays calm and collective throughout but afterwards finally gives in to her emotions and breaks down crying. It was heartbreaking. Let’s hope that Skye makes a full recovery in the next episode.

The big reveal in “T.R.A.C.K.S.” was the fact that Mike Peterson is now working for The Clairvoyant against his will and has been outfitted with a cybernetic leg. The news broke over a week ago that Peterson would return as the Marvel Comics character Deathlok. Now we get to see Deathlok finally take form.

Overall, this episode was funny, fast-paced, and had a gut-wrenching open ended conclusion. I never felt bored watching it. It was definitely a step in the right direction for the series. “T.R.A.C.K.S.” puts Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. back on track. Pun intended.