Agents of SHIELD: 315 “Spacetime” Review
Reviewed by Ollie Gregory.
Alright Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, you got me. This episode was clever, I fell for every trick, and I was utterly absorbed throughout. I admit, begrudgingly, that you win (I swear to goodness, next filler episode I’ll get my own back though).
Spacetime was effectively Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D meets Minority Report. At the very start of the episode we meet a man named Charles Hinton (Bjørn Johnson), a cold homeless fellow whose a little to cautious of touching people. As I’m sure you guessed, Charles is an inhuman, and is revealed to have the ability to give himself and others precognitions of someone’s death simply by touching them.
After an encounter leads to her coming into contact with Charles, Daisy has a vision which involves numerous things, such as her being shot by Coulson, Fitz and Simmons holding hands while it snows, Lincoln looking up at her with his face covered in blood, and Charles dying next to her while he whispers ‘I was hoping you could help’. It’s all very unpleasant stuff and Daisy is understandably spooked by it all.
Thus leaving our S.H.I.E.L.D squad in a tough predicament, where they have to find a way to make sure the future doesn’t happen the way Daisy sees it. Fitz is understandably skeptical and, in a fantastic scene, explains how time is actually an illusion due to us living in three dimensions and that if Daisy actually saw the future then there’s nothing they can do to change it. Most of the team, however, isn’t buying it, and Coulson seems to possess logic no one else in time travel movies does, when he suggests Daisy just stay at the base.
So it is decided that May is going to go and rescue Charles from HYDRA (I forgot to mention that they kidnapped him. Oops) so Daisy’s visions cannot come true. In order to make sure that May is fast enough to save Charles, Daisy sets up a mock version of the room she saw in her vision and has the team play the roles of the HYDRA thugs she saw so May would know what was coming. It’s this type of comic book weirdness which I long for in my comic book shows, and they absolutely nailed it this episode.
There really wasn’t a stand out performance this episode, with the whole cast being great, even Lincoln. If I had to mention someone though, I’d have to say Bjørn Johnson. As soon as you meet him you can’t help but feel incredibly sorry for him and as the episode progresses, and you learn more and more about his story, your sympathy for him grows and grows. His scene at the very end of the episode where him and Daisy lay down next to each other was absolutely superb and it is a shame we won’t be seeing more of him.
Another standout performance, but in a totally different way, was that of Brett Dalton (I almost called him Grant Gustin for some reason). I’d been worried that having Hive take over his body was just a way to keep Ward on the show, but everything from the way Dalton talks to the way he carries himself made it clear that this was a completely different character. He also wins the MTV awards (Ooo, topical reference) both for coolest coat and most revolting powers. I feel like I’m finally starting to understand why HYDRA were so desperate to bring this guy to Earth.
One of the most underrated parts of this episode was the return of Andrew. After Fitz had repeatedly said that there was going to be a reason that May couldn’t go on the mission and that Daisy would take her place I found myself anxiously waiting for whatever this reason was going to be, with my anger imminent. Somehow, the show managed to find a reason May couldn’t go on the mission which didn’t infuriate me, and we got some absolutely fantastic emotional scenes between May and Andrew. The revelation that the vaccine didn’t work, as Lash slammed his hand on the door was just one of many great moments, however it does suggest we won’t be seeing much Blair Underwood, which is a shame for everyone.
This episode also had some of the greatest action we’ve ever seen on the show. We got to properly see the sequence Daisy had visions of, and maybe this was just me, but I was grinning the whole time, seeing the HYDRA agents that the team had earlier been imitating. We also got to see everything Daisy saw vision of happen, but not in the way you would imagine. For example, while she thought she saw a vision of Coulson shooting her, he was actually shooting a mirror in front of her. You might think this sounds like a bit of a cop out, but trust me, it was excellent.
The issues were few and far between, but there were some. Mack didn’t turn up, and despite him being a focal point of last week’s episode, I still don’t feel like we see enough of him. He would have fit in this episode perfectly. As well as this, the show seems to not want us to like Lincoln. Why else would they have Lincoln admit to having never watched the original Terminator, or have him threaten to kill Coulson? (Amusingly, Coulson threatens to have him removed from the team for the first comment, but not the second)
Despite these complaints, the episode was about as good as you can ever want a superhero show to be. It comes with my strong recommendation, even if just for the hilarious scene where Lincoln gets telekinetically hit in the face with a fire extinguisher (it’s golden!!!).