Monday, October 31, 2016

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. #10 Review and *SPOILERS* - Marvel Monday

Back To The Status Quo

Written By: Marc Guggenheim
Art By: Ario Anindito, Rachelle Rosenberg
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: October 26, 2016
Publisher: Marvel

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

So quite a bit has been happening in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. during the Civil War II crossover. Elektra is now in charge of the team, Jemma is being turned into a Deathlok, and Phil Coulson has been fired from S.H.I.E.L.D. However, it would seem that all of those things are going to be wrapped up in some way now that this series is coming to an end. That’s right, issue #10 will be the end of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and I don’t really blame anyone for it. I bought the last four issues because they were tie-ins to Civil War II and probably one of the few books whose tie-in actively was involved in the events or ideas surrounding Civil War II. That said, I doubt many people bought those issues and I’m not at all surprised that the series will not be continuing. However, we still have the final issue to read. Will it be exciting? Will it tie up all the loose ends? Let’s find out.

Our issue begins with Leo Fitz standing over the body of Phil Coulson who clearly has been shot in the chest. He is bleeding and unconscious, possibly dead and a gun lays on the floor. We immediately cut away to a storyline that happened beforehand upon the S.H.I.E.L.D. Battlecarrier. While Deathlok gets Jemma ready for her transformation, Phil Coulson has been captured as we saw in the previous issue. He is interrogated by Maria Hill for a moment when a loud noise shakes the carrier. We then flash forward a little bit and Phil is in a diner with Leo and Daisy. The group decides that they are going to have to deal with some unfinished business with General Strakofsky. Phil has information about Strakofsky’s involvement with the trial of Clint Barton as well as sources claiming that he is selling weapons to the Russians, so the three agree to take him down.

Fitz arrives at the General’s home and talks to him about his little deal with the Russians. Fitz does his spy thing while Daisy and Phil monitor them from outside the house. They get the General to admit his wrongdoing but just then they are confronted by three robots who immediately attack them. We then flashback to the past on the carrier where Phil is still locked up. Turns out the shaking was caused by Jemma who appears to be disoriented and raging because of it. We then cut back to the General’s home where the team is fighting the robots. They are able to defeat them and provide back up for Fitz just in time as the General was about to shoot him.

Back in the past, Elektra attempts to restrain Jemma but her new Deathlok strength proves too strong for her. Maria Hill finally pulls a weapon and plans on killing Jemma if she has to when Phil interrupts them. He has been freed from his cell by Melinda May and he asks that he be allowed to speak with Jemma first. He thinks he can bring her back to reality. Luckily enough, he’s right and Jemma regains her composure and realizes where she is. Back in the present, The General resists his arrest and ends up discharging his firearm into Phil Coulson’s chest. Coulson falls to the floor and Daisy uses her powers to suddenly throw the General across the room.

We return once again to the past where Jemma is completely normal again. She thanks Henry for keeping her alive even though she has been turned into a Deathlok now. Maria Hill returns Phil Coulson to his cell but tells him it will only be for a little while. She tells him that she just plans on holding him until the latest superhero civil war ends. Then she will cut him loose. We finally cut to the present for one last time and Phil Coulson is laying in a hospital bed until he is visited by Commander Carter. They were able to use the recording that Fitz gave to put Strakofsky behind bars and S.H.I.E.L.D. admits that they were wrong in firing Coulson before. They decide that he should be with S.H.I.E.L.D. once again and it seems that the team is back together. This is where the series leaves us.

I’m not sure if the creative team knew this was going to be their last issue or not. On one hand, you have they trying everything they can to get back to the status quo, but at the same time they had so many storylines going that they just had to ignore now. Elektra being the new leader isn’t really addressed and she doesn’t appear in the final team shot. In addition, Grant Ward being back isn’t even mentioned aside from the fact that he was talking to Phil before Maria Hill came up. Then, all the Civil War II debate that was going on earlier is now gone because other stuff has to be wrapped up. It a very rushed issue that ignores a lot of the new stuff that they introduced. That said, I didn’t hate it. It’s not an amazing issue or anything but it’s decent. Probably one of the better issues of this series that I’ve read. Just goes to show you, sometimes less is more.

Bits and Pieces

While the final issue of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. doesn’t address many of the ongoing storylines that have been introduced in the last couple issues, the storytelling aspect of this issue is actually very well handled. It does seem that the creative team learned this was going to be the final issue in their run and just did everything they could to end it as close to the status quo as they could. That is a little frustrating but I understand it. Ultimately, it has a satisfying ending.


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