This is another two-fer review. Next week’s episode ties in to “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” which I’ll be seeing and reviewing opening night. I also expect to have a review of the first season of Daredevil’s Netflix series up in a week or two, as well.
Cast and Crew Information
Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson
Ming-Na Wen as Melinda May
Brett Dalton as Grant Ward
Chloe Bennet as Skye
Iain De Caestecker as Leo Fitz
Elizabeth Henstridge as Jemma Simmons
Nick Blood as Lance Hunter
Adrianne Palicki as Bobbi Morse
Kyle MacLachlan as Calvin Zabo
Henry Simmons as Alphonso ‘Mack’ Mackenzie
Dichen Lachman as Jiaying
Jamie Harris as Gordon
Luke Mitchell as Lincoln Campbell
Ruth Negga as Raina
Blair Underwood as Dr. Andrew Garner
Kris Lemche as Ethan
J. August Richards as Mike Peterson / Deathlok
Simon Kassianides as Sunil Bakshi
Maya Stojan as Agent 33
Henry Doogman as Dr. List
Written by Daniel J. Doyle (Melinda) and Monica Breen and Paul Zbyszewski (Frenemy of My Enemy)
Directed by Garry A. Brown (Melinda) and Karen Gaviola (Frenemy of My Enemy)
Melinda: We learn the details of how Agent May came to be known as “The Cavalry,” how her marriage ended, why she hates the nickname, and how it all connects to current events involving the Inhumans.
Frenemy of My Enemy: Coulson teams with Ward to get answers about Hydra, while Skye, May and the other S.H.I.E.L.D. make strange alliances of their own.
Melinda: “Are you in a bathroom with one of those electric hand dryers?” “Yes.” “You’re going to be okay.”
Frenemy of My Enemy: This smells of a feed to “Age of Ultron,” and I’m very happy about that.
Melinda: The psychiatrist can’t figure this out?
Frenemy of My Enemy: Um, yeah, he is a cyborg.
These feel somewhat original. The structure of each episode this season is getting to be a pretty standard structure, but the details consistently add new directions to the plot and change up the status quo. I give it 5 out of 6.
The effects are very well done, with alterations in Wen’s make-up to represent a 7 year gap in time, new applications of powers, and more. I give it 5 out of 6.
The story is well assembled in both episodes. Each is a complete piece of the puzzle and still serves as a part of the bigger picture. I give it 5 out of 6.
The acting is generally well done by the regulars and the new cast of characters that barely feel like guest stars any more. I give it 5 out of 6.
The production is the usual high quality Mutant Enemy stuff. This is a team that really knows their stuff, right down to slight differences in colour palettes that indicate which shots are now and which are from seven years ago in “Melinda.” I give it 6 out of 6.
The emotional response is excellent. Fitz’ reactions, May’s development, Ward’s attitudes and more are all good to see going forward. I give it 5 out of 6.
Overall, this is a good pair of episodes, consistent with the entire season on a spoiler-free review level. I give them 5 out of 6.
In total, Melinda and Frenemy of My Enemy receive 36 out of 42.