Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. 1.11 The Magical Place

Episode Summary from

The episode centers around the team’s efforts to rescue Coulson and his captors’ efforts to learn the secret of his resurrection. Victoria Hand is assigned to lead the rescue effort and she notes the amount of effort being used to rescue an single agent is unusually high and speculates Coulson has some unknown value. As part of these efforts, the team captures Vanchat, a dealer of Chitauri artifacts who had recently been in contact with Raina. Ward is able to break Vanchat and get information about Raina. Meanwhile, Skye has been exiled from the team and sets out on her own investigation. Unable to access computers directly, she impersonates May and intimidates Lloyd Rathman, a shady businessman, to assist her in hacking into secure files. Coulson is initially interrogated by Po, who uses torture in an effort to break him. Coulson asks why he is being interrogated when the Clairvoyant should presumably know all the information he could give. Po reveals that the Clairvoyant has been unable to sense Coulson since his resurrection. The Clairvoyant decides that Po’s methods are ineffective and kills Po and replaces him with Raina. Raina succeeds in gaining Coulson’s partial cooperation by appealing to his own desire to know what happened to him. Coulson is able to recall being operated on by Dr Streiten and another doctor and begging to be allowed to die. At this point, the team arrives and rescues Coulson. Coulson says Skye has earned his trust and removes her bracelet. Coulson finds Dr Streiten and asks him what happened during the operation. Streiten tells Coulson he had been dead much longer than he had been told and it took a series of operations to revive him. Coulson had wanted to die and his mind was manipulated to give him false memories and restore his will to live. In the final scene, it’s revealed that Peterson is alive and has had one of the controlling eyes implanted in him.

Episode Recap from

[i]When we last saw Agent Phil Coulson 36 hours ago in “The Bridge,” he had been kidnapped by Raina, aka the “Girl in the Flower Dress.” His team busts in on a meeting being held with a man called Vanchat. The guy tries and fails to escape their pursuit. Agent Victoria Hand lets the captive know that they need his help finding a friend. They want him to lead them to Centipede. Once that happens, they’ll find Coulson. Regarding the other casualty of the kidnapping, agent-in-training Mike Peterson appears to have died in the explosion.

Skye wants to hack into Vanchat’s financials, but Hand wants her booted off the bus. Agent May agrees with this decision. With a little nudge from Ward, Fitz and Simmons, Skye sets off to investigate things on her own. She poses as Agent Melinda May to get information on Vanchat’s financials. Back on the bus, Ward tricks Agent Hand’s interrogator so he can imply his own intense brand of questioning on Vanchat. He gets results that lead to active strikes all over the world. Agent Hand can’t help but wonder why Agent Coulson is so important.

Coulson lets Po know that he’ll die before giving any information. He says that the Clairvoyant is a fraud. Po disagrees, but he does admit that his friend can’t see how Coulson was brought back from the dead. Po will torture him until he finds the answer to this. Coulson manages to escape from his bindings, but he’s trapped in a forgotten town that’s surrounded by nothing but desert. Po continues his torture until a phone call from the Clairvoyant puts an end to it. It also puts an end to Po, as he’s killed via a remote death blow.

Raina is asked to take over where Po left off with Coulson. She wants to know how the super soldiers they are creating can be brought back to life. She offers to help uncover the secret S.H.I.E.L.D. has been keeping. Raina brings up the past love of Coulson’s life. Her heart was broken when S.H.I.E.L.D. told her he was dead. Coulson realizes that he keeps saying that Tahiti is a magical place. He tells Raina to turn on her machine so he can finally find out why.

Ward is caught off guard when he realizes May got Skye kicked off the bus so she’d have more freedom to do her thing. This works out well. Skye gets a sketchy financial guy named Lloyd to access crooked accounts in the Caymans. She’s quite proud of herself when she single-handedly overtakes her patsy’s security guards. She heads out in Lloyd’s sports car once she has the info she needs. She calls the team to tell them where Coulson is being held. Ward tells Agent Hand that he’s taking his team to get him with or without backup.

In the desert town, Raina asks Coulson to think back to his first memory after he died. He was on a sandy beach where Director Fury ordered something done to him. Outside, Skye reunites with the rest of the team as soldiers swarm. Raina desperately tries to get Coulson to describe what he sees. It’s dark. Coulson asked that they let him die back when the doctors were working on him. Skye storms into the room and promptly decks Raina. May pulls the plug on the machine hooked up to Coulson, who is in bad shape but able to recover.

Agent Hand lets Coulson know that Centipede operations have been taken down across the globe. The Clairvoyant is still in the wind though. Coulson thanks Agent Hand for all that was done. He also thanks his team before telling them to get back to work. For Skye, that begins with a removal of the bracelet that’s been limiting her computer hacking abilities. She asks Coulson if he learned anything. Her boss says what was done to him wasn’t real. They were just messing with his head.

A short time later, Coulson pays a visit to the doctor who was part of his visions. He says he knows about Tahiti. The doctor says Coulson was dead for days after the battle of New York. Under orders from Director Fury, a team of scientists worked to revive him even there was catastrophic neurological damage. Coulson had wanted to die. He had lost his will to live. The scientists tried to give that back to him. They gave him pleasant memories. The doctor says he’s truly sorry, but Coulson leaves before he can say much more.

Mike Peterson is alive. His substantial injuries from the blast on “The Bridge” include burns as well as the loss of one of his legs. Mike is being held in a secret cell. He has no idea where he is. The only thing he does know is that he is deep trouble. A message like the ones that plagued Akela Amador in “Eye Spy” A camera has been built into his eye along with a failsafe measure that will kill him if he disobeys orders. Mike is devastated as he is now helplessly, mercilessly under someone else’s control.[/i]

Please use this thread to discuss the series’ eleventh overall and first season eleventh episode The Magical Place. Rule: Please keep spoilers limited to those revealed during the series up to this episode only.

Today I did something very strange and unique. Something I’d not done in over half a decade. I think the last time I did this was during BSG’s original run and it wasn’t in the last season or two.

I watched a TV show at the time it was aired, on TV.

Gotta say I enjoyed the episode. What they did to Coulson was pretty horrific, and I’m not talking about the bad guys. Skye talking the rent-a-cop through hacking the guy’s accounts was pretty funny, as was May’s compliment on her Skye’s jacket. I like Fitz’s hard-ass attitude, I hope he keeps it. And I knew whatshisname, superhero with a kid guy, was not dead. Though things aren’t looking all that great for him.

I still can’t unsee or unhear what Fury and “The System” did to Coulson. That was horrific and downright frightening. The question now is will Coulson and accept it and go on to do great and heroic things with his second chance (highly likely) or will he wallow in his forgotten will to live or perhaps even go so far as to take vengeance on Director Fury and “The System” for what it did to him (highly doubtful but a possibility nonetheless)?

Skye is definitely turning into a valuable solo asset. I hope to continue to see her progress AND her wardrobe. Did you like the mock Agent May/Black Widow feet apart stance when she met Mr Rich and douchebag?

Mr Peterson is going to have some tough choices ahead of him. But more importantly with Po and Raina out of the way who is he responding to? The Clairvoyant directly?

Kudos for watching it live! Due to a last minute schedule change I had to watch it 2 hours delayed. I hope I get to watch it live next week. I want to see Skye’s reaction to what Coulson tells her.

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Yeah it was a pretty graphic visual there. You can tell their budget got a shot in the arm. Hope that continues though frankly I won’t mind not seeing on-air laser brain surgery with a weeping patient any more!

Skye is definitely turning into a valuable solo asset. I hope to continue to see her progress AND her wardrobe. Did you like the mock Agent May/Black Widow feet apart stance when she met Mr Rich and douchebag?

Yeah I liked that. I also liked how even after May “betrayed” her, she still obviously looks up to her.

Kudos for watching it live! Due to a last minute schedule change I had to watch it 2 hours delayed. I hope I get to watch it live next week.

Likely the last time for a while. I work 3rd shift so am usually not home when it’s on but I worked Christmas so got some days off.

While I did enjoy the episode (I really did)…so did GF…I was kinda hoping this abduction was going to be more then a two parter, I thought they had more they coulda dove into on this one…

how the team kept together without Phil there to keep them from being at odds (which never happened…but with only 3 days elapsed and them focused on getting Phil back I can see that)
gives them a lil more time to show nibbles of what really happened to Phil (and like you guys…all I can say is…YIKES!!!)

I did love Skye thinking “well crap what would May do here”…and then doing it (and yes yes yes!! on the outfit choice :smiley: )

there’s still a chance that Raina IS the Clairvoyant too…she was getting a LOT of information on the fly about Phil and what was in his head…even with her being next to the other guy when he had his last phone call, if she’s that capable mentally it could be done…

I’d think this show is gonna be due a visit from Mr Fury sooner or later in this season…but good stuff, worth the wait!

I haven’t been able to watch this yet because they changed it to not being available on free Hulu until 8 days after it aired.

Ew! That’s how I normally watch it. I guess I’m gonna be a week behind everybody.

And way to go ABC. Now people can’t even use Hulu to catch the episode if they forget to record it, before the next episode airs. BRILLIANT!

Well I just had to watch the show a second time and lucky for me I did not erase it off of my 2nd DVR. I’ve gone from “It-was-a-good-episode” to totally fan-boying out on it.

Vanchat? I don’t read the comic so I didn’t know much about him. Since this was like the 3rd time (or more) that we’ve seen or heard mention of him I did a cursory internet search and it turns out this bad boy is a MAJOR character in the comic. Which means 1) We’ll more than likely see more of him in the episodes and seasons to come and 2) It was a BIG deal to take him down and capture him at the beginning of this episode and shows how good Coulson’s team really is.

This team WAS NOT going to stop until they found Coulson. With or without Victoria Hand. With or Without SHIELD. We all knew this but it was punctuated by Agent Hand telling Ward that this effort was unprecedented to attempt to find and retrieve a Level 8 agent and that Fury and Hill personally called her about the progress.

May getting Skye thrown off the plane went both ways. In the end both May and Skye knew at heart what each other would be thinking otherwise Ward, Fitz and Simmons wouldn’t have enabled her and Skye wouldn’t have run like she did. Skype proved herself quite capable WITHOUT her hacking skills. She disarmed the local harmless security guards, manipulated Lynch and grabbed some cool new clothes in the process. She found creative ways to deal with her internet nanny including USING her nanny to her advantage. It was fun to watch.

OH! And let’s not forget about Ward’s anger issues. Yes, it might make him a bit of a loose canon but I didn’t really see the rage build up in him like it should. He was channeling and controlling it well in the episode. As was his relationship with May. Will either of this arcs continue into the second half of the season? Probably. But if so both should have been at least touched on in this episode and neither really was. The interrogation of Vanchat was amusing and we found a new capability The Bus has. Keeeewwwwllll. And Ward’s moves to give the night-night pill to the super soldier? Nice.

Coulson’s Secret: The man’s desire to learn what exactly happened to him was overpowering. He didn’t trust the system. And rightfully so. Hopefully it will be for the best for him.

So this episode got me thinking. Why did Fury grant Coulson The Bus and The Team? 1) He’s capable. 2) Fury needed another team out there that was outside of the system. But most importantly 3) Fury was trying to cement in Coulson a REASON TO LIVE. Coulson wanted to die. Fury was trying to give him a purpose and surround him with collectibles which Coulson thinks are important. Fury wanted Coulson back. Is there a bigger reason beyond the fact that Fury was fond of Coulson? I have no idea and I don’t think we’ll ever find out. This is as good of an explanation as any I suppose.

The Clairvoyant. Is Raina The Clairvoyant? I doubt it. But she did seem to have unprecedented access into Coulson’s psyche and thoughts. Did she comes by these before the operation as Coulson was identified as the key to stage three or did she read him on the fly? Since it was implied that Raina was also attending to their other subject - Mr. Peterson - and someone else was operating Mr. Peterson at the end of the episode I’d say that she is NOT the Clairvoyant. Also we learn that Coulson’s mother died and that deeply affected him.

Coulson The Ladies Man or Coulson The Observant or Coulson The Agent? Phil got his Agent On in the episode when he escaped. He also went after the doctor to get the exact answers he wanted. Phil also commented on Raina’s flowers. Was this his observant agent mode or his observant lady’s man mode? Phil is definitely a higher level player than I would ever have given him credit for. Good for him!

I guess I didn’t realize that the Centipede tech was based off of Chitauri metals. But that makes sense now.

The End Of Shield: Po mentions that The Clairvoyant sees the end of SHIELD. Is that a foreshadowing to Captain America: Winter Soldier or something we need to experience in this TV show or both? I tend to think it’s foreshadowing Winter Soldier - just another complexity level to Agents Of Shield.

The Bus: So The Interrogation room can become an instant convertible AND The Bus has cool mid-air VTOL capability PLUS afterburners. I’m liking The Bus more and more over time.

This episode definitely had a multi-faceted sides to be a great episode. I’m sold on it and I hope the rest of the series is as good as this one was.

~Shooter Out

I think we’ve seen some long term arcs in this one. I think it’s going to be much more than a simple two parter. This show just got a WHOLE lot better.

I think that moment was soooo intense it has diverted our attentions from EXACTLY what we saw and heard. I tried to uncover some of that above.

Skye definitely has some skills. So does Fitz now too. They aren’t the noobs they once were, that’s for sure.

True. I’m not going to discount it but supposedly there was someone else on the phone with PO plus SOMEONE is operating Mr. Peterson now.

Yup. I see him coming up before, during and after Winter Soldier to include the season finale. Also it will be nice to see COMMANDER Hill again.

Have you tried the main ABC site?

Well rats! After I said ABC might have it I went to go check. They do but they require cable/satellite provider authentication. And guess what? My cable company hasn’t authorized Watch ABC in my area. Well then. I wonder how that will increase the torrenting for this episode?

I’ve got an antenna only (which is how I watched it this week), but no TV card in any computers else I’d consider finally getting off my but and home cooking a DVR. The problem is, it’s way too much work for one show no matter what show that is. :smiley: