This Week In Superhero TV: 10/20 – 10/21
Another short week before Constantine’s pilot comes out at the end of this week and I have no idea when I’m going to get around to watching it. I am also running behind on watching Tales From the Crypt season 3 so it won’t be up tomorrow, though I hope I will be able to finish it by the end of Saturday. Anyway on to the actual television episodes that I will be talking about here. After a good showing by Gotham last week, it’s back down into the dumps again, but Flash and S.H.I.E.L.D. are both going very strong. Flash is really starting to remind me of a more superheroic version of Buffy which is funny because S.H.I.E.L.D. is the one that’s helmed by Buffy alums, or at least Whedon team members. Still, overall it was a good week and I’m interested in seeing what Constantine has to offer tomorrow and if I can keep up with watching four shows a week and still have time to watch movies. Here goes!
After last weeks episode that I actually quite enjoyed, it went back downhill hard. Where I liked the setup of the war between the crime lords in Gotham last week, it somehow had the air knocked out of it this week. Instead of having an air of intrigue to the situation, it had all the subtlety of a sack of bricks. Maroni ends up looking more like a punk thug who just wants a piece of the action, and Fish Mooney… Honestly, I don’t know what’s going on with Fish Mooney. One minute Jada Pinkett sounds like she’s doing her best Eartha Kitt impression, the next minute she’s acting like a psychopath, the next she’s acting like a caring mother to her singing secret weapon. I will say that I did like some of the seeds planted on the scheming front as we see that she is working with one of Falcone’s other lieutenants against him, and the secret weapon singer she picked up last episode and was grooming this episode is to become an inside man, so to speak, into Falcone’s intimate side. But the rest of the episode did not work at all, with little Bruce playing at detective and digging into the Wayne Corporation’s books to find all the off-book deals was just ridiculous. The Viper subplot was another way too on the nose reference to Batman when they casually mention that Venom has already been perfected. And Penguin spills the beans to Maroni in order to become his inside man, but almost dies for it and gets Gordon neck deep in Maroni’s dealings as well. It’s just all too convoluted for me, and where there were a lot of great looking shots last week, there was nothing on par this week. It’s just too up and down for me at this point.
Episode: Things You Can’t Outrun
This episode gets into a lot of the Star Labs team’s backstories, specifically the day of the reactor explosion. Something that I realized I didn’t talk about in last week’s episode was the final scenes with Dr. Wells. The first one shows that he has knowledge and is quite possibly from the future though his motives are ambiguous, the second one shows without a doubt that he has a much darker side, and here it shows that he actually orchestrated the particle accelerator explosion in order to create the Flash. I’m very curious to know what part he will actually play as the show goes forward, though I’m not curious enough to look through analysis from people more knowledgeable about the comics that may already have some theories that hold weight. Aside from that point, there is a lot of forward momentum with all of the characters. The freak of the week was fairly mediocre, but he wasn’t a very large part of the episode to tell the truth. We get a lot of moments where the characters have to face their truths. Iris faces the truth of her relationship with her dad’s partner and finally comes clean with her dad, who of course already knew. Caitlin Snow faces the truth of her fiance’s death during the particle accelerator explosion where she originally blamed herself as he wouldn’t have been there if she wasn’t there, but in the end he died a hero. And though the show doesn’t support this theory, since there are many meta-humans who were thought to be dead, there’s always a chance that he will show up later in the show as a meta-human himself. And Joe faces the truth of his old friend Henry Allan who he thought had killed his wife all these years and now realizes that he made a horrible mistake and essentially asks forgiveness. This is the kind of thing that makes a great series and why I have high hopes for this show, it takes something like a superhero and it makes it relate-able on a more human level as a metaphor. It reminds me of Buffy on its best days, it has already made some great relationships between the characters, and it shows much more subtlety than Gotham. It’s quickly becoming my favorite show of the season.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Episode: Hen in the Wolfhouse
An episode full of intrigue and misdirections as the different elements start coming together in interesting ways. While I’m a little bit disappointed that Simmons’ stint as a Hydra double agent has ended, it certainly ended with a bang. And the very short lived Wonder Woman is the one who gets to save her. Adrianne Palicki was a nice addition to the team, though it’s really starting to feel like the team is getting a little bit too big and spread out. The only member of the team that has gone was Ward and even he’s not completely out of the picture, and now there are three new agents added to the team, and there’s even a slight chance that Rayna might end up playing ball as well. At least the show has held up the fact that it’s nearly the only superhero show out there that has so many strong female characters and it has a good chance to add two more to the team in the near future. I will say that I enjoyed the extra surprise that she was the ex that Agent Hunter has been talking about. And finally I have to mention Skye’s father. He’s a bit of a wildcard at the moment, he’s possibly part or all alien, he’s a bit of a psycho, and at the end of the episode he decides to work with Hydra in order to kill Director Coulson. That is really the one aspect of this season that I’m not entirely sold on yet. The way Hydra is playing out has been interesting, including the double agents and the technology, but I’m not entirely buying this father who just wants his daughter back. Only now he doesn’t really want her back because she thinks he’s a monster? Maybe? Aside from that, it’s still a fine episode and Skye has really come a long way from who she was at the beginning of the first season. I’m also glad that the pulse meter was only there for that one episode. Anyway, I’m looking forward to where this season ends up. Until next time, this has been Bubbawheat for Flights, Tights, and Movie Nights.