‘Agents of SHIELD’ Review – S3 Ep.7 (Chaos Theory)

By Josh Melo

‘Agents of SHIELD’ Review – S3 Ep.7 (Chaos Theory)

Having revealed the human identity of Lash at the end of last week, Chaos Theory wastes little time getting into the how and why behind Andrew’s transformation. Giving us insight into he moment it happened, his psyche ever since the terrigenesis and how he still longs for May. Plus a ton of other important stuff happened.

A revelation as big as Andrew’s deserves it’s own episode and Chaos Theory is more or less it. About 75 percent of the action revolves around Andrew/Lash and it’s awesome. Taking us all the way back to his getaway with May, we get to see the pair truly happy. Soaking in the sun, sipping drinks on the beach and just being with each other, you feel genuinely glad that these two finally get to be alone and normal. Yet all good things must come to and end. It turns out it wasn’t fish oil that turned Andrew, or a lovely lobster with Terrigen dressing. No, it was his loyalty to the job that turned him Inhuman. I love the role reversal here between Andrew and May, the one who always dedicates herself to the job ends up wanting to extend her leave while the guy always telling May to chill goes back to work early.

While I don’t agree with May’s decision to talk to Andrew before letting the rest of her team know what was up I can understand where she was coming from. SHIELD and the ATCU haven’t had the best track record when it comes to Inhumans and sending them after someone so important to her probably wouldn’t end well (which it kind of didn’t anyway). Seeing Andrew plead his irrationality when “lashing” out felt genuine thanks to a fantastic performance but didn’t quite add up when looking at everything that has happened in episodes past. He willingly changed to kill the HYDRA thugs, he actively decided to let Daisy live and he consciously chose to kill his computer buddy. That doesn’t sound like an irrational beast running on instinct. Lash does seem to be going around choosing those who are worthy and killing those who aren’t like his comic counterpart but his explanation was a little iffy on the specifics.

Aside from that small bit of inconsistency I thought his whole storyline was handled extremely well. You could see Andrew fighting back his urge to change in front of May and some of what he said makes you think he can actually be redeemed (once again in huge part to the phenomenal performance by Blair Underwood). Bringing in SHIELD and the ATCU helped reinforce the idea that nobody has a clue as to what should be done with the Inhumans. Stronger and stronger people keep showing up and no one person has an effective answer.

Which ties into the short conversation we heard between Rosalind and Daisy. While I totally back what Daisy is saying about the ATCU being inhumane to the Inhumans I can’t completely fault her for operating the way she has been. Both of them make compelling arguments and the fact that neither way seems to be working efficiently probably calls for a mix of the two approaches.

While both agencies make their way through the building to surround Andrew Lincoln appears offering Mack some juicy intel he just so happened to come across while he was off screen for a few episodes. His inclusion was the only bit I found too coincidental, though I never really liked his character outside of his ability to shoot lightning. It does seem like he is part of the team for real now though, so at least the Secret Warriors are coming together. While speaking to the Secret Warriors, Joey is back! Andrew’s heartless mind murder of Joey was badass but I’m glad he didn’t actually go through with it (because mind sculpting is awesome and SHIELD needs more of it).

Returning to Lash and May for a moment, the final confrontation that saw Lash take on both agencies by himself was more than fitting for such a beast. The carnage he left in his wake, even after saying how much he hated hurting people, was the final straw for May who decided to take things into her own hands. In a moment where the writers could have gone for the classic beauty and the beast moment (or Hulk and Widow) they instead opted for May to mercilessly gun down Andrew in human form. Even though he didn’t actually die from May’s emotional outburst the fact that she was ready to kill the one man she loved was a huge moment for her. As was her decision to freeze him for the next while until SHIELD figures out what the heck is going on.

Now I love me my FitzSimmons, now and forever, but their side story (as well as Bobbi and Hunters) acted only as distractions from the event that was Lash. Of course I’m interested in what is going on with the replica portal and the hunt for HYDRA, but I’m watching a monster hunt write now and it is way cooler than listening to you talk about stuff. If there is one issue AoS is facing this season it is the issue of having too much story (which as far as issues go isn’t all that bad). I can appreciate a fast story pace but if it comes at the cost of glossing over key developments, I’d rather them take a breather. Luckily that hasn’t happened yet. But how can you not tear up after seeing Fitz get emotional over those videos? Even when I dislike Fitz I still love the guy.

And to end things off… goddammit HYDRA

Overall Chaos Theory gets an 8.5/10.