Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Episode 1×07 “The Hub” Review


“The Hub” was no dud. – Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Ah, “The Hub” was… just good.  I like to judge how I feel about an episode by waking up the next morning and seeing how much I can actually recall.  The general gist of this installment’s aims was clear, but proved to be a bit jumbled at points.  Perhaps there was too much going on, or maybe the flow of “The Hub” just didn’t sit right with me.  It’s difficult to pinpoint, but something was lacking.  Last week’s episode had a brilliance about it, so by comparison “The Hub” wasn’t nearly as polished and pretty.  There were some first-class aspects, however!  I found no issue with the character development.  Fitz and Simmons retained their progress.  As you all know, this makes for a happy Kelly.  So, let’s talk about what went right and wrong, shall we?  I’ll divide it into sections: the infiltration mission, The Hub, and the overall course of events to finish it up.

A budding bromance?  Not just yet…

Fitz and WardThis area on the episode map centered around The Overkill Device and the dynamic between two very different men.  My heart was calling for them to bond like the brothers they could potentially be, but Ward thought otherwise.  REALLY?  Did we have to throw the sandwich away?  Was it completely necessary?  Don’t we possess some sort of S.H.I.E.L.D. technology with scent-blocking capabilities?  I stressed out with Fitz over the wrongful disposal of a perfectly good sandwich.  So, sue me.  Anyway, back to my point, I wish they had gotten a tad closer as friends, but I guess we can only expect so much from Ward.  He tries to be an emotionless fortress of solitude, but we know better!  There’s a teddy bear in there somewhere, I know it!  And Fitz has really had the chance to shine in these past two episodes.  He’s no puppy.  Ward is a Doberman Pinscher, and Fitz is more of a Labrador Retriever.  Maybe he’s not the most intimidating pooch on the block, but he’s reliable and loyal.  These two canines worked surprisingly well together, and I feel they’ve developed a mutual respect.  This gave us a chance to see how the characters behave when isolated from one another.  They can’t all be on the plane all the time.  Events will pull them apart, and “The Hub” proved that they have marvelous stand-alone abilities that complement each other.  Ward can still operate like the well-oiled machine he is, and Fitz can play with the big dogs (though often underestimated).

“It’s the extraction team.” ~ Fitz

“Better.  It’s the cavalry.” ~ Ward

Nothing like team shenanigans…

Fitz and SimmonsThe Hub is a bustling place of business, and amidst all of that business, we had Skye and Simmons causing a delightful ruckus.  Between Skye searching for secret files and Simmons showing off her slightly more rebellious side (she finds it to be a bit thrilling), there was a lot going on.  If we’re sticking with the dog metaphor, May and Coulson were letting their puppies run amok.  Yes, they’re THEIR puppies.  I mean to imply that they’re parents TOGETHER (so sweet).  Indeed, Joss continues to baffle me.  I thought that they were possibly going to veer back to the brother-sister relationship, but there is definitely something romantic between Fitz and Simmons.  Are they all being paired up so expectedly (Ward and Skye, Fitz and Simmons, Coulson and May)?  I don’t know how I feel about it, but it’s not like they’re going to come to me for story arc advice.  On another note, it’s good to see Coulson trusting Skye again.  Even though she breaks the rules and considers accessing the forbidden documents for a moment, he doesn’t truly hold it against her.  In fact, by the end of the episode, both May and Coulson have a great deal of sympathy for her.  So, WHAT IS THE DEAL?  Tell me the tale of Skye’s parental units, Joss Whedon!

“I like men that are about my height but heavier than me.” ~ Simmons

Quite the busy puzzle…

May and WardTo make things perfectly clear, I had zero problems with the actors’ performances.  The dialogue was enlightening and the character growth apparent.  My concern was this: I felt like I was on a plane that had just hit some turbulence.  The juxtaposition between The Hub and what was happening in the trenches just didn’t gel for me.  Everything that went down made for an exciting episode, but it didn’t stick.  Maybe if they hadn’t chopped it up so much and had chosen instead to give equal, but larger hunks of time for both The Hub and the boys, it would have created a more cohesive episode.  The writers quickly pieced the puzzle together.  Of course, we had all of the parts and they were well made.  It simply felt a bit rushed.

“Did you know there was no extraction plan for Ward and Fitz?” ~ Skye

“That’s classified.” ~ Coulson

Really, this was an enjoyable episode.  It could have been a smoother ride, but maybe that’s merely the nature of “The Hub.”  It may well have been the vibe the writers were going for.  This chapter had lots of different pots on the stove all at once.  It didn’t necessarily jive with me, but that’s not to say it didn’t work for others.  What did you think, Marvelites?