Agents of SHIELD Recap Season 3 Episode 14 “Watchdogs” 3/29/2016
Last week Bobbi and Hunter left SHIELD for good and this week still seems to be in some sort of transition. But it is a transition into something better, so reminiscent of the days when the team was still on that plane.
While Mack is visiting his brother Ruben at home, a hate group opposing the ATCU and super powered people surfaces called the Watchdogs. Lucky for Mack he is the closest one do the Watchdogs’ most recent attack. Posing as an insurance agent, Mack tells his brother that he has to leave for a few hours. The brother is already suspicious, as he should be.
Coulson sends SkyeDaisy and Fitz to the scene as well while Lincoln is left behind who has just returned from his SHIELD assessment. At the site the team realizes the leader of the Watchdogs is actually a former SHIELD agent Felix Blake who was only featured once. Remember season one and when Deathlok was a thing? Good times. What happened to him again? We will probably never know.
Coulson conveniently knows where Blake might be hiding for some reason. He takes Lincoln along even though he does not seemed to be pleased with his SHIELD evaluation.
Mack returns to his brother’s house to find Ruben drunk and working on the bike they had been bonding over. So far Ruben seems on a fast track to Watchdog-dom. His money issues have made him bitter with the government. Even Mack mentions that he sounds like a Watchdog. This is a surprise to no one since Ruben’s reactions have been so heavy handed. It does seem a large leap from mortgage issues to domestic terrorism. Either there is something else going on, or Agents of SHIELD is only dealing in clichés and overused tropes. Though that should not come as a shock.
SkyeDaisy takes Fitz out to shake down on of the Watchdogs followers. Mack already voiced his apprehension about her using her powers as an unfair advantage and sacrificing civil liberties. From the look on Fitz’s face, he is not a fan either about the turn SkyeDaisy is taking either.
Agents of SHIELD forgot that May’s husband Andrew was a thing until this episode. In the first part of the season he became an Inhuman who killed other Inhumans. Now he’s on the run and no one was really concerned that he was out there possibly murdering people. Now May and Jemma are on the lookout for him. Jemma thinks that she can vaccinate Andrew before he finishes his transition and turn him back to normal. May, however, is intent on killing him. Typical May. Having hope that he can be saved would be worse for her.
While Mack, Fitz, and SkyeDaisy are staking out the Watchdogs’ headquarters, Ruben crashes the party on the bike. He does not seem to be able to understand that now is not the time or the place. The real question is how he followed Mack to begin with without them realizing.
The sound of the bike brings out the Watchdogs and Ruben sees Mack shooting his gun. Clearly not an insurance agent. SkyeDaisy uses her powers but the Watchdogs thinks that it was Mack. Ruben takes off on his bike.
Mack tells the team that the mission has been compromised but SkyeDaisy can’t leave without getting to Blake. She doesn’t find him and while she is distracted, Fitz gets tagged with the same solution that imploded the ATCU building. Fitz can slow down the reaction but soon he will have the same fate.
Coulson and Lincoln go to one of Blake’s safehouses only to find a hologram. They stay to gather intel. One of the Watchdogs gives information onto how to disarm Fitz. Mack goes back to the house to talk to Ruben when the Watchdogs break in, wanting to kill who they think is an Inhuman.
Ruben and Mack put aside their differences and fight their way out. There were only five Watchdogs and it doesn’t exactly solve anything except their relationship. After Bobbi and Hunter left, it seems natural to have a Mack-centric episode. But caring about Ruben’s almost seduction to the dark side would have held more weight if the audience actually knew who he was before this.
However, this episode was a return to basics in a very good way. It seems after a season and a half Agents of SHIELD finally realized what was not working for them. Bobbi and Hunter have left indefinitely. Thinning the herd of characters is a step in the right direction. The show was overloaded with too many characters. SkyeDaisy still seems to be a completely different person than she was introduced as, but they are also complicating her character. It seemed in the first season they wanted her to turn towards the dark side. This is a theme that is being brought back. With the inclusion of the DWARVES and ICErs, this episode is almost retro.
With Brett Dalton returning next week, this can only mean good knows. Hopefully.