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‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Season 2 Episode 12 Recap: “Who You Really Are”

agents of shield melinda may skye

Last weekAgents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returned, dark and dreary. With “Who You Really Are,” the fun (mostly) returns, thanks to a couple of alien guest stars, in an episode that has massive MCU implications for Inhumans and beyond.

We begin in Portugal, where the Cult of the S’more (and/or ‘Ham’ Porter) has not yet taken the country by storm. How else are we to take the skepticism coming from a teenager when confronted with the phenomenon in a circle surrounding a fire on the beach? Just before buying tickets to Portugal to take on a new life calling (to spread the S’mores gospel), Lady Sif (Jaimie Alexander) saunters on the beach from the surf. She’s not wearing her shiny Asgardian armor, but she does sport a big honking sword. She demands to know where the “Carver” is. These guys don’t even know what S’mores are, Lady, do you really expect them to know who/what the Carver is? She ends up throwing a dude across the beach, whose crime was to try and hit on a Asgardian goddess, which can happen to the best of us. As she stomps off, a brave S’mores-less soul asks her: “Who are you?” Lady Sif, out of earshot, loses her bluster: “I don’t know.”

That’s right: this episode is all about MEMORY LOSS HIJINKS! And other stuff.

Like Skye, who’s back to training with May, both of them unleashing hellacious moves. But May knows Skye’s holding back, and wants her to stop. She’s fairly confident Skye at full power can’t hurt her…but of course, she doesn’t know that Skye has legitimate power now, and is scared shitless of unleashing it. Fitz interrupts, checking in (because he knows the truth). This pisses off May even more, and the pair of them get back to tussling.

Hunter and Bobbi have just tussled, and by tussled, I mean had steamy passionate intercourse, because they’re both panting post-coitus. The discussion turns to Coulson, which is where my mind turns to after sex. Coulson has offered Hunter a full-time position with S.H.I.E.L.D., and he’s considering it, because he wants to stay on the show. But mostly, because he still wants to have sex with Bobbi. They didn’t work before because she was singularly focused on SHIELD, but this time around it could be simpler, since they’d be on the same team! Unfortunately, Bobbi might not be on the same team, because she has her big sinister secret with Mac. I’d feel bad for Hunter, but he’s still sleeping with Adrianne Palicki.

Coulson and Mac are doing inventory, AKA are given obligatory actions to mask a dialogue heavy scene, because God/Hydra knows inventory-ing isn’t important. The big news is that Coulson wants Mac in the field; considering he beat the crap out of all of them, Coulson thinks he’d be useful. Mac points out that he was being CONTROLLED BY AN ALIEN, which is a fair point, but Coulson responds: “You’re a beast all the time,” implying that big black muscly people automatically know how to fight real good. Mac explains he’s not into violence…a not-so-throwaway line that connects to the episode’s final moments.

The team are called into Portugal to figure out what to do with Sif, who remembers Asgard, but nothing else. Coulson’s on the case, and immediately after he says they’re going to solve it, Skye prances in with a trending online video that shows Sif fighting someone with a hammertruncheon, who actually bests her in combat. This seems like unfortunate news, not the least of which is that we don’t live in a world where an Asgardian fight could pop up on YouTube.

The fearsome foe from the video? He’s BLUE, and uses his truncheon (which is just a great word) on a poor nurse at a hospital. He’s interrogating her for no real reason, but we learn why he’s here: Someone has changed, and he’s here to stop them. It’s obvious he’s referring to Raina and Skye, and since he’s blue, we automatically assume KREE, which is a HUGE moment for this show, as AOS really is moving so much faster on this Inhumans storyline than I could’ve ever imagined, considering the movie comes out in 2018 or whatever. Meet Vin-Tak (Warehouse 13‘s Eddie McClintock).

While the team returns to the docks where Sif had her fight with the guy who’s Kree that we don’t know is Kree yet, there are several let’s have fun with Sif’s lack of memory games., I pretty much loved them all (although she has disturbing Groo from Buffy similarities). Sif is pleased to know that she’s a good warrior, and can’t help but smile when she hears Thor’s name (for obvious reasons to everyone but Coulson). When Sif’s told she knows Odin, she responds “Shut up!” Can Jaimie Alexander get an 8 episode Agent Sif Midseason show next year?

Bobbi and Skye go to the hospital and discover the nurse with no memory, knowing he’s nearby, because he’s there to refuel on Nitrogen. Naturally. They quickly find him (whilst Blue), and he quickly beats up Bobbi. Skye gets unstable, activating earthquake mode, and knocks a shelf on top of herself (smooth), letting the Kree escape fairly easily.

agents of shield sif

After the dust up, they suspect he’s Kree, and then the whole Carver business is revealed: Carver means keys in Kree, Sif explains, who remembers everything but stuff about herself. Convenient.

Skye’s shaky after the incident, and wants to tell Coulson the truth, but Fitz implores her to wait on more of his tests. Lesson to all fictional characters: always tell the truth.

Bobbi has had this epiphany, and wants to bring Hunter in on her and Mac’s secret. To which Mac basically says, “Remember how awful it was when we found out friends were Hydra?”, and doesn’t want Hunter to react as they did. This means that their secret isn’t that they’re Hydra, but that was obvious, since they already had that twist with Ward (WHERE’S WARD?!). Anyhow, Mac’s steadfastly against telling Hunter their dastardly plan, and suggests doing the opposite: push him away so they won’t have to fight him.

Coulson, Sif and May realize they have to go to Chavez, Portugal because Chavez means something in Kree probably, and that the keys refer to the Obelisks. As in plural. Uh oh. Skye, terrified that she’ll break the Richter scale, asks off of the action, claiming that she’s still reeling from the “beatdown” she got from the Kree. Coulson understands, but May looks skeptical, and it reminds me of when I had a very very slight pain while playing basketball when I was a kid, and felt the sudden urge to ask out of the game. My Coach didn’t think anything of it; my Dad didn’t buy it. May is the Dad in this scenario. It wasn’t one of my prouder moments; Skye likely thought the same thing.

Lucky for her, SHIELD captures the Kree INSTANTLY, thanks to a high powered voltage net thing. Simmons has been amping up all of their technology and weapons, because she’s a villainous mustache away from starting a despotic war on people with powers. It works out this time though, as they bring Vin-Tak in.

When Vin-Tak awakens, he turns out to be a chill guy. He wants to earn their trust by gifting Sif her memories back, but needs his truncheon to do it. Truncheon truncheon truncheon. They’re wary to give him his weapon, but he steals it anyway and does what he promised…Sif has returned! Then Vin-Tak explains his mission, delving into some massive backstory that has huge comic book/MCU ramifications. To wage war (against the Skrulls, unless FOX has the rights), the Kree developed terrigenesis, as a way to create soldiers. Vin-Tak admits it’s not a pleasant chapter in their history, but luckily all of the experiments failed, EXCEPT on Earth, where a faction had built a city. The Kree put a stop to it, and scattered the Diviners across the world instead of destroying them. They had been inactive…until NOW. Vin-Tak goes further into the terragenesis, referring to the transformed beings as “abominations” multiple times (though probably not the Abomination). This is like a dagger to Skye. Vin-Tak’s mission is to destroy the diviners; there are enough on Earth to create an army. Unfortunately for him/everyone, all of the obelisks/Diviners are missing from the crate that they uncovered. Who has them? Hydra? Fury? Mysterious Third Party? I’m always picking Mysterious Third Party.

When Vin-Tak and Sif learn that Skye was on hand for the transformation, and the questions come hard and fast, it’s game over: she loses control, an earthquake underway. Melinda May asks Skye: “What’s causing this?” “I am.”

The truth is out, and Sif immediately wants to bring her to Asgard for safekeeping. Vin-Tak wants to do worse, and May quickly shepherds Skye away.

Vin-Tak follows, leading to a Mockingbird/Vin-Tak rematch. This one, as all rematches are on TV, is closer, and thanks to Hunter and a big ass gun we’ve seen before, ends in victory for SHIELD (why not use the big gun more?). They also use Vin-Tak’s truncheon on himself, erasing his memories of this entire ordeal, forgetting about Skye. Easy.

But Sif hasn’t been convinced. Skye is in near meltdown mode, locking herself into Ward’s cube, the base seconds away from being turned to rubble, but Sif’s sword cuts through the block, ready to put an end to it. Instead, Skye shoots herself (I guess in the arm?), knocking herself out.

Coulson argues that she needs to be with the people she loves to truly be protected and safe. Aww. Skye’s sacrifice sways Sif, to a point: “You can’t swim against the tide,” she warns, implying that Coulson and company are trying to combat fate, a power greater than themselves. But she trusts “Son of Coul” and SHIELD to do right by Skye. After she’s gone, we learn that May might agree with Sif, pointing out that the team all came together for Skye in the first place. You mean Marvel has been planning this from the start?! NO WAY.

Simmons can’t believe Fitz lied to her, and she’s not the only one. “We could’ve handled her,” Hunter says. “We need protection from her,” Mac argues. Fitz is the only person standing up for her (and treating her like a person still), so Skye locks herself back up in Ward’s prison, miserable. At first I got Raina suicide vibes, but thankfully that didn’t happen.

This fairly jam-packed episode ends with Hunter FINALLY confronting Mac about this stupid secret, because everything in every episode of every TV show is really just about the lies we tell each other or ourselves. Mac plays coy, but Hunter won’t have it, forcing his hand, which involves Mac putting Hunter in a sleeper hold, dropping him to the deck, a concerned look on his face. The truth will (finally) out next week.