If you are one of the people who stopped watching, you are overdue to return.

Cast and Crew Information

Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson
Ming-Na Wen as Melinda May
Brett Dalton as Grant Ward
Chloe Benet as Skye
Iain De Caestecker as Leo Fitz
Elizabeth Henstridge as Jemma Simmons
B.J. Britt as Antoine Triplett
Saffron Burrows as Victoria Hand
Maximiliano Hernandez as Jasper Sitwell
Bill Paxton as John Garrett
J. August Richards as Deathlok / Mike Peterson
Titus Welliver as Agent Blake

Written by Paul Zbyszewski
Directed by Bobby Roth

Premise

The hunt for the Clairvoyant intensifies, and several subplots come to a boil.

High Point

The entire last act is intense.

Low Point

Sometimes casting alone spoils a story. Does anyone believe that particular guest star won’t be seen again?

The Review

This is original storytelling in the classic Whedon fashion, if that makes any sense. The audience expectations are accurately predicted and then deliberately defied by going in unpredictable directions. I give it 5 out of 6.

The effects are generally well done. They didn’t “stick the landing” at one point and have a couple of other moments where they have a hard time making the digital equivalent of “blue screen” look right. Given the amount of effects this week and the production time scales involved, it’s hard to do really well. I give it 5 out of 6.

The story was tightly structured. There is no down time, and no logical fallacies that I see. I give it 6 out of 6.

The acting is solid. This cast is pulling together, the guest stars are great, and we have real tension going on. Very effective. I give it 6 out of 6.

The production involved in direction, editing, scoring, and so forth is excellent. I give it 6 out of 6.

The emotional response for “The End of the Beginning” is perfect. This really pulls it all together very, very well. I give it 6 out of 6.

Overall, this is probably the best episode of the season. I give it 6 out of 6.

In total, The End of the Beginning receives 40 out of 42. It’s also the beginning of the end of the season, as we have new episodes every week from now to the end of the season.