“Know Your Onions” is a fantastic sophomore episode for Agents Of SHIELD’s final season. Week two fired on all cylinders, providing fans with great writing, action and set design. There may have been a few weak lines of dialogue here and there and some unimpressive camerawork at times, but these flaws didn’t stop this episode from reaching the top heights of AOS quality.
Last week’s episode, “The New Deal”, brought the team (minus Fitz) team to the 1930s in order to stop the Chronicoms from altering the timeline by “pulling the thread”.
The “thread” in question turned out to be Wilfred Malick, father of Gideon Malick, one of the heads of Hydra. Malick was going to deliver the final ingredient for what would become Red Skull’s super soldier serum to other Hydra operatives, and he was disguising his operations through a bootlegging facade.
Agents of SHIELD Deals With The Time Travel Dilemma
The Agents are on separate missions when Malick’s secret is revealed, therefore learning the truth at different points in the show. Patton Oswalt’s Ernest Koenig shed some light on Malick’s backstory, explaining that his father killed himself after the stock market crash. This would lead to Malick’s mother snapping mentally and entering a constant state of silence. While Malick’s future acts of evil are not forgiven by this revelation, his reason for journeying down such a dark path is more understandable now.
Morality is dissected beautifully in this incredibly thought provoking episode. How are we as viewers supposed to feel about a character who behaves like a relatively kind and decent person with a deeply troubled past when we know their future sins? Is it ethical of Quake to command Deke to kill Malick? Is Director Mackenzie in the right when he orders Deke to stand down? Either the timeline is drastically altered or a super-powered Nazi regime rises; There are no happy endings this time.
This powerful and emotional narrative is further bolstered by action sequences that, while not The Winter Soldier good, are highly engaging and energetic all the same. A revived Agent May throws down with everyone’s favorite Chronicom, Enoch, and the third act nears its end with a shootout. LMD Coulson’s rather impressive with a tommy gun, and Mack is damn near Asgardian in hand to hand combat. Hopefully the series can maintain or improve on the fight scenes in it’s final eleven episodes.
On top of that, this week altered the status quo by introducing us to new rules regarding the Zephyr’s time travel capabilities, rules which tragically saw a beloved synthetic hero left in the 1930’s with no guarantee of rescue. I can’t wait to see where in the timeline our heroes end up next week, and I can’t wait to see more development on LMD Coulson and Agent May’s relationship. I’m proud to say that the first two episodes of season seven have been top notch Agents Of SHIELD, at least in my humble opinion.
What did you think of “Know Your Onions”? Will the Agents come back for Enoch before the series finale? Are you excited for Sousa to show up in next week’s episode? Share your thoughts with us in the comments or on social media!