As the episode opens, we see a hooded Coulson being dragged in an underground facility. We see that he is about to be tortured by a man called the Interrogator. Just when we think this is one of those episodes that will flashback to 12 hours earlier or the like, we actually are seeing a tail end of a mission in Siberia where Coulson, Melinda and Shaw were extracting an Agent Shaw.
On the bus, Simmons extracts the info that Shwa got through his nose. Coulson tells his team that they are going the Hub (location classified) to see what Shaw has extracted. Skye wants to know why can’t Coulson tell them. He replies that the information requires Level 8 clearance, which no one on the Bus has but him.
In the Hub, we meet Agent Victoria Hand (Saffron Burrows), who in a meeting with Coulson, Melinda and Ward learn that the intel was about a device that separatist group from South Orretia or something like that, a former Soviet state, has stolen a device called the Overkill that can trigger any weapon within its range to fire off.
She says that the mission is for two agents to infiltrate to facility where the Overkill device is housed and turn it off. Melinda and Ward assume it will be them but Hands says they need someone who knows how to disarm it. That lucky SHIELD agent is Fitz.
As he is packing for this mission, Simmons is worried about him but gives him is favorite sandwhich as comfort food while he is on the mission. These two crazy kids need to admit that they like each other. You can see it all over their faces.
Anyways, Skye is a bit mad that she doesn’t know what is going to happen Ward and Fitz so she wants to break into the Hub servers to learn more about this classified mission.
As Ward and Fitx undertake their mission, a little hiccup happens when they try and make contact with one of Fitz’s contacts at a Russian border bar. These people don’t take kindly to Fitz and Ward and tie them up at the back of the bar. Thanks to some ingenuity by Fitz, he actually manages to win the people over with his engineering skills to restore power to the bar (which he took out) that allows people to watch a critical soccer match.
On the transport truck that will take them across the border and then to the facility, they get hijacked but they escape to a drain pipe. When Fitz goes to eat the sandwich that Simmons lovingly made for him, Ward tosses it out for fear of them being found out. In the morning, Fitz is still mad at Ward for tossing out his food but they go back on the mission when another truck passes by and they manage to sneak on it via its under carriage (they used some cool looking camoflauge sleeping bag to hook a ride).
Back at the Hub, Skye enlists Simmons help in getting to an access panel so Skye can use her hacking skills to find out more about the mission. Simmons gets caught by Agent Sitwell (The Americans’ Maximiliano Hernández) but she is really bad at trying to get out of the situation that she ends up using the night night gun to knock him out. Skye starts looking for files to tell her more about Ward and Fitz’s mission but also comes across the redacted files of the orphanage where she was dropped off. She is tempted to find the original file (Coulson earlier in the episode promised Skye to look into this) but as she has a limited amount of time to look for the files, she decides to find out about Fitz and Ward. What she learns is that their mission is a suicide mission as there is no extraction plan for them. Once the device is rendered neutral, SHIELD is going to bomb the facilty.
Coulson catches Skye in the act and the two have an argument about breaching the Hub’s servers and Skye rips into him saying that he sent two of their own to die and did he know about it. Coulson says that is classified information. However, Coulson didn’t know and confronts Hands about it. I don’t really remember what she says in return but I don’t it is not that important.
Melinda, Skye and Simmons decide that they should act as the extraction team and Coulson wants in too.
At the facility, Fitz uses this cool device that acts as a window into the facility that allows him to see what they are up against. Once again, this show has pretty cool devices/gadgets. When he tells Ward this, he notices that Ward has taken out the security guards.
The two men find the Overkill device and Ward tries to get Fitz to leave as he realizes that their is no extraction plan. But Fitz insists on staying and that he is no coward. He manages to turn off the device. He ends up taking a part of the device as guards descend upon them and Ward lets SHIELD know they completed their mission. Hands sends in the troops as the facility starts to shake.
To ward off the guards, Fitz has repurposed a bit of the Overkill device to short circuit their weapons. When all the guards are down for the count, they leave but then get outmanned. However, the Bus appears and does it thing to take down some more guards and Ward and Fitz are rescued.
FitzSimmons have an awkward reunion where Fitz tells Simmons that her sandwich was delicious and I once again says that these two need to get together. Skye also welcomes back Ward.
Later, Coulson visits Skye and tells her that he has found the original documents. The only thing that it says that an unknown female SHIELD agent dropped her off (unknown if she is her mother or someone that just found her) and that is all he knows. However, in a later conversation with Melinda, it seems there is more to this story. I was hoping that it would be revealed that Melinda was the agent that dropped her offand that she is Skye’s mom. Alas, that reveal has yet to come (I still think Melinda is Skye’s mom). Coulson asks Melinda for her help in finding out the truth. Melinda says she will try and see her looking at a photo of a woman lying dead in a pool of blood.
The end credit scene involves Coulson calling in to the Company and wanting to know about a death and recovery file. After some passwords are bandied about, Coulson is seeking information about his recovery in Tahiti (which he did talk briefly about with Hands). We learn that this information is Level 8 and that Coulson is no longer Level 8. Did his extraction mission cause Fury to remove that Level 8 clearance from him? Not too sure.
My problem with SHIELD is that answers aren’t coming fast enough. I think it would be nice to know what happened to Coulson way before the season 1 finale and I want us to know about Skye’s parentage too in short order. Anyways, looks like next week is the cross-over episode with Thor: The Dark World. I guess I know what I am doing this weekend.