TV REVIEW: Agents of SHIELD Season 3, Episode 13 – Parting Shot | FanboysInc

TV REVIEW: Agents of SHIELD Season 3, Episode 13 – Parting Shot

By Jeff Ayers

TV REVIEW: Agents of SHIELD Season 3, Episode 13 - Parting Shot

Well, it has been teased a bunch in the last year, and now we finally see the beginning of Marvel’s newest TV series, ironically titled Marvel’s Most Wanted. “Parting Shot” gives a full episode sendoff to the characters of Bobbie and Hunter. The first question on everyone’s mind has to be: Is this a good idea? Agents of SHIELD has a rough enough time getting ratings and viewership, and now ABC and Marvel thinks they can parlay that into another show, a veritable spinoff? Time will eventually tell if this idea is good or bad.

This episode starts out with both Bobbi and Hunter seemingly captured, and then a bunch of flashbacks to set up how they got into the predicament in they find themselves. Both characters are tasked to stake out the current whereabouts of Malick, who is in Russia seemingly trying to set up an Inhuman “sanctuary”. Hunter aptly points out that it seems like there is a pattern with Coulson’s methods, as he always takes the strange road to apprehending the bad guys, and more often than not, in ends up in trouble or death. Also, the pair haven’t had a break from the spy life in a very long time, and wish they could take a holiday together away from the job.

All this set up is nice, but it is nothing we haven’t heard before, actually multiple times, on this show. The characters of Bobbi and Hunter are pretty fleshed out at this point, and now it seems like the writers are going through the motions. Even the fight sequence in the beginning, which pits Bobbi and Hunter against four Russian guards, isn’t as exciting as this show has been in the past, with much of the fight in the shadows. Bobbi especially is sorely underused on Agents of SHIELD, considering that she is actually a superhero in the comics. (Codename: Mockingbird).

TV REVIEW: Agents of SHIELD Season 3, Episode 13 - Parting Shot

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All that aside, it seems like a lot of the characters are slightly off in “Parting Shot”. Bobbi and Hunter are hot heads for sure, but they are also great spies, they’re great at their job. Yet, they do absolutely terrible in their respective interrogations. Also, Daisy, May and Mack are slightly off their character models with no real explanation, and the rest of the cast is reduced to nothing more than set decorations for much of the episode. This season of Agent of SHIELD has been consistently giving us stellar episodes with increasingly better writing and acting. Unfortunately, this one missed its mark.

TV REVIEW: Agents of SHIELD Season 3, Episode 13 - Parting Shot

Understandably, Marvel and ABC are desperately trying to bolster their brand by adding more programming, and spinning off characters. As May says in probably the best part of dialogue in the episode, “SHIELD is about sacrifice”. Maybe, this episode was needed to further the narrative of Agents of SHIELD, and also set up this new show with Marvel’s Most Wanted. Yet, I truly believe Bobbi and Hunter work well on this show because they are part of the team, part of the ensemble of characters. For fans of another Joss Whedon show, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Bobbi is akin to the Cordelia character, and Hunter to Xander, or even Spike. They work very well on the show with the rest of the cast around them, but take them out of that picture and they aren’t as interesting. (Case in point, Cordelia was pretty awful on the Angel spinoff series, but I digress.)

The episode ended with a long goodbye to the characters, who are now off to have their own adventures, apparently. Peppered into “Parting Shot” was more talk of Inhumans, a Russian coup, and some feigned machinations of Malick and Hydra. All of that really felt like bland storytelling next to the core story of Bobbi and Hunter’s leaving, and it is a shame because most of those story points are why we watch the show in the first place. I do hope I am wrong and Marvel’s Most Wanted turns out to be a quality television program, yet from this starting point, things look rather bleak.

FBI Score: 6.5 out of 10. “Parting Shot” might be the weakest episode of Season 3, and it also stalls out a lot of the current plot threads that have been so engaging on Agents of SHIELD. It is sad to see the characters of Bobbi and Hunter leave, but the farewell was too dragged out, leaving me wishing for next weeks episode to pick up where we left off with Ward/Hive, Lincoln, Malick and the Inhumans.

Jeff Ayers

Both my parents instilled in me at an early age the awesome power and incredible wonder of the written word. My father sat with me when I was four years old and taught me to enjoy reading with classic comic strips like SPIDERMAN, PEANUTS, B.C. and, later, CALVIN AND HOBBES. My mother exposed me to such classics of literature as Poe, Tolkien, Stoker and Doyle, and I started my own comic collection with allowance money from mowing lawns. I liked Wolverine before it was cool, I watched as Superman died and returned, and huddled under the covers as I turned the pages of SANDMAN. Reading is like oxygen to me, and all genres and formats are welcome and devoured equally. I am the co-host of The DW and Incredible Jeff Show, CEO of Permian Productions, and a reviewer at Graphic Novel Reporter. I am 34 and live in scenic Saratoga Springs New York, where I haunt coffee shops and dive bars and the best comic shop anywhere, The Comic Depot.

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