Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. S05E21 The Force of Gravity review
Airing Fridays in the US on ABC
Director: Kevin Tancharoen
Writer: Drew Z Greenberg and Craig Titley
Essential Plot Points:
- Kree lord Taryan Kasius has plans for Quake. But Daisy has no desire to be his prisoner and cracks the device keeping her mentally sedated.
- Talbot needs more gravitonium to increase his powers. He gets Creel to touch him and become the substance, so he can absorb him.
- The S.H.I.E.L.D. team escape from the Remorath ship and try to figure out how to stop super Talbot.
Here we are at the business end of season five, and there’s something more pressing hanging over the team than the instability of super Talbot: will Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. be cancelled? Next week’s episode, which is the season finale, is ominously titled The End. Hopefully, that’s not too on the nose.
Although viewing figures are low for the show, they’re better than the already cancelled Marvel’s Inhumans, and the show has a large repeat viewership who don’t watch it live. Disney also needs content for its upcoming streaming service, and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – which crosses over Marvel’s TV and movie output – seems perfect for that. Given the big themes that have been entertainingly explored this season, it’d also be a crime to see it go now.
Speaking of which, General Talbot (now a hugely powerful inhuman thanks to the effects of the gravitonium) continues to take steps that point to him being the literal “destroyer of worlds” spoken of so often this series. The final sting confirms his plans to crack open the Earth and find more of the substance, surely making him the cause of the planetary destruction the team witnessed in the future.
We’ve previously surmised that breaking this time loop might require something extraordinary, such as the death of a major character. Most likely, we believed, this would be one of the “unkillables” (those people who we know make it to that cracked-Earth future, so believe they can’t die until that destiny is fulfilled). However, some good writing has brought two separate plotlines together, merging them into a tough choice for the team. Either they can save Coulson using the last dose of centipede serum, or they can infect it with the odium and use it to destroy Talbot?
Who will survive? If ABC and Disney hit the cancellation button, will we even care?
- Daisy’s dropped jaw as she sees Coulson and May making out is priceless.
- Agent Davis’s slow introduction as a more major part of the team is interesting (even if we fear for his life a little, having lost agent Kim this week).
- As soon as Qovas explains how the Remorath rise through the ranks – as warriors they fight their way to leadership – we want to see him go toe-to-toe with May. Wish rewarded!
- Creel’s been a great recurring character and his powers, which initially seemed one note (he becomes a material he absorbs) were proved to be pretty useful in numerous ways (like merging with a door to open it). We’re really sad to see him go, especially in such a way as being absorbed by super Talbot and the gravitonium.
It’s hard to intimidate Coulson at this point:
“You’re just the villain of the month and you’ll go down like all the rest.”
Nice way for Fitz and Simmons to info dump what the science team are doing with the centipede serum and DNA harvested from Daisy’s mom’s skeleton:
“Let’s walk through the simulation one more time.”
“So we either save Coulson…” “…or we save the world.”
May and Yo-yo’s summing up of the situation, which has been foretold by future Yo-yo, is spot on.
Review by Matt Chapman