Agents of SHIELD comes back with a strong start, but does the comic television darling have what it takes to succeed in it’s third year?

“Laws of Nature” picks up some point after the events of the Season 2 finale and right away, we see some of the aftermath of the Terrigen contaminated ecology, with poor newly formed inhuman Joey Gutierrez (Juan Pablo Raba) and his out of control melty powers.

Right away, the show pulls the viewers into this new world of super powers without any waste of time towards revisiting the various Marvel Cinematic Universe threads that hamstrung previous seasons. There was no discussion on Skye/Daisy’s accent to the leader of the Inhuman team. There was no annoying dalliance with ex members of Hydra. We just go straight to the action and in return we get a greatly cinematic feel to it.

Understandably, Joey is as confused but all these changes as a new viewer may be, and of course he serves as the sounding board for plot review. Daisy’s “short version” explanation of why everything is happening works out well with a funny nod to the “long version” that involves watching the whole series if not the entire MCU collection.

MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – “Laws of Nature” (ABC/Kelsey McNeal) CONSTANCE ZIMMER

MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – “Laws of Nature” (ABC/Kelsey McNeal)
CONSTANCE ZIMMER

One of the new forces introduced in the premier is the Advanced Threat Containment Unit, or the ATCU, headed by Rosalind Price (Constance Zimmer). While not exactly “evil” they are quite the antagonist towards Coulson and SHIELD, with similar skills, philosophy, and mindset. Some of the best interactions between enemies in the series occurs right off the bat during Coulson and Price’s subway meeting.

As a government agency, you can’t help but wonder if it’s a slight lead into the upcoming Captain America: Civil War saga. Now that President Ellis (reprised by William Sadler), is publicly addressing the alien threat, the ideas of Inhuman registrations are sure to follow. The question is which side of the civil war will SHEILD and the ATCU fall upon?

MARVEL'S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. - "Laws of Nature"  (ABC/Kelsey McNeal) CHLOE BENNET, LUKE MITCHELL, HENRY SIMMONS

MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – “Laws of Nature” (ABC/Kelsey McNeal)
CHLOE BENNET, LUKE MITCHELL, HENRY SIMMONS

One thing we do know is that there is a new enemy to everyone in town, Lash (Matthew Willig), the should sucking Inhuman bent out on absorbing all the essences of any Inhuman he can find. I particularly enjoy the fact that with their success, the effects department has an expanded budget to give us some great looking prosthetics around Lash’s look, as opposed to the cheap caveman look of Mr. Hyde.

Speaking of prosthetics, after last season’s run in with the Terrigen crystal, Coulson now sports a nifty robotic hand. We haven’t seen anything special he can do with it yet (a la Mega-man), but I’m sure the show writers have plenty of gags in store for us involving the removable appendage. It’s already proven handy in escaping out of handcuffs. (Why did they not consider his mechanical hand was removable?)

“Laws of Nature” doesn’t overwhelm the viewer by cramming too many distinct storylines other than merely referencing them for a later date. For a show opening, it would work really well as a cinematic open, which is absolutely what the show looks to do as continues to one up it’s theatre based big brothers.

Other Observations

  • Coulson’s hand is still around. Maybe they can cure it
  • Simmons is wandering around on some Alien planet. How has she been able to eat and drink though?
  • Hunter and Bobbi are still a thing, but I’ll never complain about seeing more Adrianne Palicki.
  • A couple of references to Age of Ultron and Ant Man
  • The “are you kidding me?” look on Hunter’s face as they are captured by Rosalind.
  • Bobbi just test fires a gun in the middle of the lab. I’m not sure OSHA would approve.
  • Based on the simulations, at this point, Terrigen contamination will basically spread to the entire world.
  • On Coulson’s new plane. “You love your new toy don’t you?” “I love my new toy.”