Episode 12 – Hot Potato Soup
Avenger references, meta call-outs and emotional pinpricks were at the center of Agents of SHIELD’s Hot Potato Soup. With the return (and introduction) of the Koenigs (Sam, Billy, Thurston, LT… RIP Eric), we were promised an episode with a touch of light-heartedness.
We love the Koenig’s nerdiness, and Patton Oswalt’s personality adds levity to the often emotionally draining plot line. The episode’s humor also helps bridge the storylines, with one being rescuing Billy Koenig and protecting the Darkhold, and the other centering around Fitz, Simmons and Mack picking apart the Radcliffe LMD.
The Koenigs really did steal the show and perhaps the best moments were when older sister LT put her younger brothers in their place.
The storyline was pretty simple and help connected the third arm of threats facing the Inhumans. Anton Ivanov is revealed to be the Superior, or, at least, it is what we are told to believe. The Superior in this episode is a Russian stereotype who glorifies ‘the old way of things.’ His nail on the head typecast leaves some room for him to be a Red Herring, but the connection his position has to the Russian politician that got Bobbi and Hunter ousted and to Senator Nadeer is interesting. Even more, his interest in Coulson is a great retcon. While the first season and half questioned how Coulson was brought bak to life, Ivanov is convinced that Coulson had a hand in bringing all of the aliens to Earth- Thor, the Chitauri, the Kree and the Inhumans.
The other plot line focused on Fitz trying to get information on Radcliffe through the LMD version. Unable to break the code and feeling provoked by LMD Radcliffe’s, Fitz stumbles in getting through. He is even thrown for a loop once LMD Radcliffe mentions knowing Fitz’ father. While we know Fitz grew up without a father as early as the first season, Radcliffe stirs up some bad memories of his tough father. After Jemma gives Fitz a much needed pep talk, Fitz discovers that LMD Radcliffe has a brain of some sorts. The brain was a little hokey looking. The explanation sounds likeit is comprised of Startalk discussions, but it helps Simmons figure out that the May running around with Coulson, the Koenigs and Daisy, is actually an LMD.
Philinda happened. That’s the term for Phil and Melinda as a couple. However, poor Phil got rooked into kissing LMD May. Darn. And another punch to the gut when LMD May begged Radcliffe to take her with him. At the end of the episode, the team burns other LMD’s, except for May, realizing it may be their last connection to her.
This episode handled some deep implications with a soft and witty touch. It was great to see an old face and gives us hope that the show will continue marry the personalities of the first season with the nuanced storytelling in their contemporary iteration. The writing was clever, from Thurston Koenig’s slam poetry gig to the talk about fanfiction.