ROUNDTABLE: Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. “Hot Potato Soup”

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Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. aired a new episode of its fourth season on ABC on Tuesday night. It really was a case of Hot Potato Soup with the Koenigs being back on the scene and the fate of the world was in their hands.

Join Roz, Karen and Rueben as we discuss our thoughts on all that went down in the episode:

Patton Oswalt as Thurston Koenig

1. How great was it to see Patton Oswalt back as Sam and Billy (and now Thurston) Koenig; and learning a little more backstory on them and how they got into SHIELD?

Roz: I sort of love the Koenigs and to see them again is always great! The backstory is good too, because I feel like we see too little about the tertiary characters. I mean, why can’t I love Sam fangirling Daisy and talking fanfic?

Karen: LOVE Patton Oswalt. He’s from this area (Northern VA) so there’s a built-in affinity, and it doesn’t hurt that he’s so damn talented. The Koenigs are some of my favorite characters, and I love how he plays them. I was sure they’d be LMDs, but I’m really glad they’re not.

Rueben: He really is great as the brothers Koenig! And I, too, was expecting them to be a part of the LMD-line; and am very happy that they aren’t. It would be cool if they start being included more often in future episodes.

2. Did you see the set-up of the real Radcliffe being tied up in the sub along with the kidnapped Billy before it was revealed? Too obvious? Not obvious enough?

Roz: No I didn’t see Radcliffe being with Billy before it happened, but my poor brain is tired this week to pick up on everything.

Karen: I figured it was a set-up from the get-go. He wants the book, he figured out who has it, he devised a plan to get the info from Billy, and he’s there to listen in. He can’t do the dirty work himself, so he’s essentially bugging the room by pretending to be captured himself. Now that we know the extent to which he’ll go to get his hands on the book, I don’t put anything past him.

Rueben: Yep, I saw it coming, too, because he wants that book so damn much; and I just didn’t buy into him being a prisoner. In fact, Karen said it SO very well that I don’t think I need – or could – say anymore.

3. What is your impression of Anton, the Captain of the submarine, who turned out to be a supposedly uber-wealthy collector of antique machinery? Supposedly he just might be “The Superior” who Nadeer mentioned in the last week’s episode. Just how dangerous do you think this guy is?

Roz: Can I just kill him before he does too much damage? I doubt he’s The Superior, but he’s another part of her plan to get rid of Inhumans.

Karen: I’ve been waiting to see who “the Boss” is that Shockley mentioned several episodes ago, and if Anton is the guy, then… meh. I was kinda hoping it’d be a twisty reveal, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this was a red herring. I mean, he’s a little badass with that whole vodka bottle thing, but again… meh. Methinks he doth flex too much.

Rueben: Again, I can’t say it any better than what Karen just said. He didn’t feel imposing or scary to me in any way, shape or form. If he is indeed “The Superior,” then he’s pretty pathetic. Maybe he’s just the face of whoever is the ultimately “boss” of Nadeer, et al.

NOTE:  Did viewers recognize Anton as actor Zach McGowan from both Black Sails and The 100?

4. Were you able to play along with the game of Hot Potato that Koenigs were playing in order to hide the Darkhold? And were you hoping that the book hidden in the Labyrinth was a fake and not the real thing?

Roz: I so didn’t play along well enough, but I liked that they showed us the Darkhold being passed around. I wish the book had been better protected in the end.

Karen: I didn’t try to follow the book, mostly because I just didn’t think to – I was just along for the ride while I watched. I too wanted the book to be locked down hard – but alas, ’twas not to be. Complacency, thy name is SHIELD.

Rueben: I played along as well as I could, but I did get a little lost in the minutiae of it all; it was fun to watch it all play out, though. I definitely wanted to believe that the Darkhold wasn’t really in that bag and that they had some devious plan to catch Radcliffe – not so much.

5. There’s another Koenig – and it’s a sister to boot? She’s a tough little cookie, huh? Thoughts on whether we’ll see her and the brother Koenig again? After all they wouldn’t have introduced her if not to use her again, right?

NOTE:  Actress Artemis Pebdani played LT Koenig.  Viewers may have recognized her face, but did you know she’s the same actress who played Vice President Susan Ross on Scandal?

Artemis Pebdani as LT Koenig (Left) and Susan Ross on Scandal (Right)

Roz: I want more of LT and maybe a little less of the brothers, but I think that show needs more women that aren’t bad or double-crossing the team.

Karen: Their sister is awesome! I mean, anyone who gave the boys crap growing up gets a gold star from me. You mention she was played beautifully by Artemis Pebdani who’s been in a lot of stuff, but I remember her from an early episode of “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” where she played a psychic/shoe salesman. So funny.

Rueben: I REALLY liked LT a lot and think she’d be a great addition to the team. I agree with Roz that we need more women on the show you are bad-ass not bad or double-crossing the team.

6. Were you kind of rooting for Mack to take out the LMD of Radcliffe? But if he had, they wouldn’t have learned about the brains (plural) that Aida created after her time reading the Darkhold, allowing Simmons to figure out that May wasn’t May. It’s about time, right?

Roz: I always want Mack to kick ass, but I think the news about the LMD brain was too important to lose with death. Yes, it’s about time that the team knows that their May isn’t her.

Karen: Mack hates robots. I await the last LMD episode when he can just line them up and open up on ’em, like they’re tin cans on a picket fence. There’s some trauma there – maybe seeing a movie at an impressionable age? He should really get some therapy about that if he wants to be a SHIELD agent.

Rueben: I was partially rooting for him – that whole Radcliffe LMD was getting a little annoying especially his continually bringing up Fitz’s lam-ass deadbeat dad. But, it was important for that LMD to not be terminated too soon. I was yelling at the TV, “finally” when Simmons said it was May that was the other brain.

LMD Melinda May

7. Let’s talk about the elephant in the room – that kiss between LMD May and Coulson? Do you want them (the real May and Coulson, that is) to even go there? And do you think it’s a good idea that they keep the LMD May around until the real one is found? Isn’t that asking for trouble?

Roz: No, I don’t need to have Coulson and May as a ship. Just no!

Karen: Eh, I don’t watch these shows (comic book related shows) for the romance. I mean, sometimes it works and I end up digging it, but I don’t actively ship their characters. Coulson + May (Cay? Moulson? Coulinda? Philinda? Ugh, they’re all bad) never really occurred to me until the writers blatantly threw in lines about their attraction to each other. I have no opinion either way. I wanted Coulson to be with Rosalind, but they had to go and kill her last season. Now THEY had chemistry. Stupid Wade. I still say that sniper shot was totally impossible.

Rueben: Yeah, I’m with you ladies! A big fat NO on the May-Coulson romance. It’s all fine and well that Coulson cares about her, but definitely not romantically. Move on, writers!! Please!!

8. Anton believes that Coulson is the reason for the Inhumans because he is always the man in the shadows, he’s dead but yet he’s not. What are your thoughts on Anton’s reasoning behind this and how do you see that playing out?

Roz: Well, we know Anton is wrong about Coulson, but I don’t need to see someone else kill Coulson (once was bad enough trust me!) but in the absence of other evidence I can see how he’d reach that conclusion.

Karen: Yeah, I guess I can see the connection he made, mostly because I figure he’s got some screws loose. Either that or he wants rid of Coulson, and he’s weaving a tale to get rid of him by any means necessary. Tying him to the Inhuman influx would get the Watchdogs worked up, so the blood will be on the lackeys’ hands – and he has an army of rabid haters chomping at the bit to get to Coulson now. The episode was full of setup scenarios, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they used this as a bookend storyline – and they’ll tie it up later.

I also want to say that I’m really glad they’ve cottoned on to the May-bot. I didn’t want that to drag on for the whole middle-season stretch. Now they can concentrate on the solves and not be blocked at every step forwards.

Rueben: You have a great point, Roz. Given that Anton doesn’t really have ALL the details, it would seem to make sense that he’s pointing a guilty finger at Coulson for what he perceives are his transgressions. Regardless of that, there isn’t any way this is going to end well at all. If Anton spurs the Russians and the Watchdogs to go after him, it’s gonna get ugly.

The next new episode of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will air on ABC on Tuesday, February 7 at 10/9c.

Here are the details on that episode followed by a trailer for the new episode:

An explosive Inhuman surfaces and the team are tasked with containing it. Elsewhere: Coulson and Mack encounter Radcliffe’s inspiration for Aida.

Using her favorite online handle, Rueben is an East Coast-bred gal who is now a permanent Californian and a lifelong tv-oholic. She watches at least 25 TV shows a week, goes to the movies as often as possible, listens to music every waking moment, reads every day and “plays” on the internet every chance she can. Some of her current favorite TV shows are Outlander, Blindspot, The Blacklist, Killjoys, The Brave, The Shannara Chronicles, Good Witch, When Calls the Heart, The 100, Jane the Virgin, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and The Fosters. Follow her at @ruebenrambling or contact her at