Warning: this review contains spoilers. You can find all of my Agents of SHIELD reviews here.
It’s a shame that Agents of SHIELD‘s new time slot has cost it some viewers, because it has been delivering quality episodes every week. And “Let Me Stand Next to Your Fire” might be the best one yet this season.
As I noted in my earlier reviews, I’ve been waiting for the season’s different storylines to converge, and they just did.
The focus of “Let Me Stand Next to Your Fire” was Daisy, who sought the help of Simmons with both her injuries and her hunt for the Watchdogs. This proved to be a fun pairing, as those two characters have always worked well together. And yet both have grown and changed so much since Season 1. That shared history and evolution made their team-up even more interesting.
Their investigation brought them to James, aka Hellfire, a welcome return of a familiar character. Yet even this once-charismatic Inhuman has changed after the events with Hive. James betraying Daisy may not have been too surprising, but his self-loathing was a fascinating addition to his character. His betrayal is only disappointing in that he would have been a fun supporting character to have down the line, but it did lead to a Hellfire vs. Ghost Rider showdown.
Which brings us to the other main storyline of “Let Me Stand Next to Your Fire”. Robbie’s investigation into Momentum Labs led to him crossing paths with Coulson and Mack, who were after the same information. When I say “crossing paths”, I mean “awesome car chase”. As far as action goes, you can’t ask for much better than that breathtaking sequence of Lola chasing down the Hell Charger. Well done, Agents of SHIELD.
You can already see how the episode gradually brought characters together one pair at a time. This culminated in the climactic sequence where Coulson, Mack, and Robbie came to the rescue of Daisy and Simmons after James’s tracker went offline. And the aforementioned Ghost Rider vs. Hellfire fight, which was kept mostly offscreen for budgetary reasons, but was super cool anyway.
The only subplot that remained off to the side was Fitz and Dr. Radcliffe running “tests” on May—or more precisely, Aida. Those were fun scenes, mostly thanks to Fitz’s panicking and May’s obliviousness about Aida’s true nature. But even this tangential plot thread was brought in neatly in the final scene, when Aida met Coulson and Simmons, and the latter instantly deduced that Aida was an android. And I must say, it was refreshing that she wasn’t upset with Fitz for keeping it a secret. I can tell Agents of SHIELD is setting up something interesting for Aida down the line, and I look forward to seeing those seeds blossom in time.