Did you go to Comic-Con 2014 in Baltimore, Maryland? Are you going to Comic-Con 2015 in Baltimore? If not, you should. Baltimore is the place to be during the September convention. There are some great names coming such as Neal Adams, Jeremy Bastian, Marty Baumann, John Beatty and Christina Blanch to name just a few.Continue reading
In the last episode, it was determined that a new group calling itself “The Calling” was responsible for recruiting children for jihadist purposes. It looked for kids who were loners, who were unhappy. But oddly, it was led by a young British guy named Daniel Budd with died blond hair who looked very European. But because of his recruiting kids, they refer to him as a twisted Peter Pan, hence the Neverland title to the episode.
They had been buying S bombs on the black market and had set some off in a hotel in Cairo Egypt that had killed agent Dorneget. But they found that was just a test run and the group was planning coordinated attacks around the world.
It turns out Dorneget didn’t want anyone to know that his parents had important government jobs. Now Gibbs is pushed to break one of his rules and let Dorneget’s mother (Joanna Teague) to work on the case. She is an operative for the CIA in the Middle East.
Gibbs Mental State
One thing that isn’t clear is about Gibbs’ state of mind. At the end of the last episode, as Dorneget’s body was brought out of the plane, Gibbs saw Dorneget and other killed agents standing there watching. Fine, that seemed like a nice tribute to them. But in this episode it is like Gibbs has schizophrenia or something because he is seeing and talking to dead people all the time, especially Mike Franks who is giving him grief about his decisions.
Luke in Protective Custody
So to start, they are protecting Luke, whose “friends” killed his adoptive parents when they thought he was turning on them. Joanna tries to buddy up to him since she lost her son and Luke lost his parents.
Luke opens up a little but both the ghost of Mike Franks and Joanna at different times tell Gibbs that Luke is playing him.
Somewhere in here McGee discovers that The Calling is sending songs to all its followers. Luke still had his mp3 player and Gibbs didn’t bother to take it from him. Why? Maybe he felt bad for Luke? Not like Gibbs.
Somehow an older kid who has been tasked by Sadiq Samar, the local honcho of The Calling, to find Luke manages to find Gibbs house and take Luke. The person who was guarding Luke was knocked out. But she was hit in the back of the head. By Luke? At some point video was found of the killing of Luke’s parents. Everyone seems horrified, but we never find out who did it. Luke?
Then Abby discovered that the songs being sent out had messages in Morse code in the base notes of the music. That seemed far fetched to us. You never see Luke carefully writing down things, just listening to music. All these kids are so talented that they can listen to a base line and translate the Morse Code in it? Seems dubious. In any case, Gibbs should have taken the mp3 player.
It turns out that Daniel Budd was a popular DJ in Britain who was popular no longer. Somehow he got kids to follow him and started using them in small crimes. This escalated. It is not clear exactly what Budd is looking to accomplish now.
So Gibbs and the team try to find Luke before anything happens to him. They are looking for Sadiq but can’t find him at first. Then there is a scene where Joanna has used her sources to find him and has him tied up in his trailer and is beating him and interrogating him. She gets some information about where Luke is. There is a knock at the door and you think Joanna is screwed, that some of Sadiq’s people are going to get her. It turns out to be Gibbs.
Gibbs is not happy that Joanna went behind the team’s back, after all they bent the rules to have her take part and he was definitely not happy with her questioning techniques.
Trip to Iraq
They find that they were not able to stop a plane from taking off in time and that Luke was on that plane heading for Iraq. So the team heads for Iraq.
They are walking through the market place and notice a girl with bright tennis shoes and figure she has been brought from the US as well. They follow her and then they find Luke. Gibbs starts talking to him and DiNozzo gets a phone call. It turns out to be Daniel Budd who is watching from a room above. At this point Luke pulls out a gun and shoots Gibbs three times. Not rapidly, but slowly and methodically.
So will Gibbs die? If it had been Duckie it might have you wondering, but many people feel it isn’t much of a cliff hanger because Gibbs is so central to the show.
Bishop and McGee feel horrible because if they had caught Brad at his house instead of him giving them the slip, he would still be alive. Gibbs sees a boy who runs and Gibbs gives chase but can’t catch him. Ducky sees what looks like a tattoo on Brad’s arm that looks sort of familiar.
Dorneget MTAC and The Calling
At HQ, Dorneget is about to lead his firs MTAC briefing and Tony and McGee are messing with him and trying to get him nervous. But, they fail. Dorneget has found that adopting another persona helps combat nervousness. His is named Gilroy Libbs. Amusing.
They get a call from Paris and Commissioner Girard says there is a guy named Matthew Rousseau involved with the calling in France. They have intercepted and deciphered some messages and The Calling is looking to buy S-mines. These are WWII German mines that when detonated, jump up and spray shrapnel and nails, etc. when they explode, to kill and maim as many people as possible.
They figure Luke is in danger so they use Gibbs house as a safe house and Gibbs tries to bond with him. Ducky meanwhile is going over Luke’s belongings to profile him and finds instructions to destroy anyone close to them unless they are also a believer of The Calling.
Despite not being allowed to talk to Bayar, Gibbs send Tony and Bishop to talk to him anyway and to blackmail him into helping by bringing Bayar’s mother into it and possibly deporting her. Bayar is not happy and wants to meet with Gibbs. He also far prefers Bishop to Tony. In the end he tells them he would have done it anyway without blackmail and without money because kids should not be used this way.
Three weeks ago I thought the story line was good but was frustrated that is was a To be continued… So I figured it would all be wrapped up the following week. But last week, once again, To be continued… So I figured they would wrap it up for the season finale. How stupid of me.
It starts with the Troll episode. Bishop’s husband Jake turns out to be talking to Gibbs on a regular basis. The team is then called to a murder scene. Surprise, surprise. The woman was Navy Ensign Janine Wilt who had her neck slashed. The team can’t find much about her because everything about her seems to be classified.
McGee is having trouble cracking the firewalls in Wilt’s computer. Ned Dorneget of NCIS Cyber is sent over to help. Dorneget thinks the likely culprit is Alfredo Montez, who is out on parole for drug trafficking. He created the cartel’s secure messaging system.
Brad is on a bus with the bomb when it is surrounded by the team. Gibbs gets him to let the passengers off. He has just about convinced him to put the bomb down when the police show up sirens blazing and Brad runs back into the bus and blows himself up.
I refuse to put in all the periods. Too much of a pain to type. Bad enough it is all caps.
Spoiler Alert – If you haven’t seen the show yet, you might not want to read further.
Going back to last week, it made a reference to the movie Avengers: Age of Ultron that had just been released the week before. But the attempt to tie in and make any connection with the movie was weak at best. It looks like they are taking the TV show and the movies in different directions or at least not coordinating them all that much. Kind of disappointing. So have to think of the two as two separate stories and just have to live with it.
Also, was disappointed to learn that Jiaying was not a good person. She had seemed so good up to that point. Good plot twist.
This week, it was a two way struggle. One with Jiaying and the inhumans and the other with Ward and Agent 33. It wrapped up reasonably well but left a few things hanging for next season.
Ward and Agent 33
Agent 33 impersonated Melinda May to fool Bobbi. They met up with Ward and the two of them proceeded to torture Bobbi to try and get her to apologize for handing Agent 33 over to Hydra. Bobbi refused to apologize and pointed out that it was a choice of giving up one person, Agent 33, or getting 12 other agents killed. She would do it again.
There is intercutting between this story line and the inhuman story line but might as well finish up this one. Lance and Fitz figure out she was captured and Lance and Melinda May and some other agents go to rescue Bobbi. Despite still being pissed at Bobbi for not telling him about the second version of SHIELD and kidnapping him, Lance is really worried for her. Ward turns on her cell phone to lure them in and sets up a trap to blow Lance’s head off when he walks through the door.
Ward and Agent 33 take out a couple of agents. Bobbi tries to move when first left alone as bait to try and get to the gun aimed at the door. But she gives up. Then she starts again when she hears Lance coming. Just in time she moves so she takes the bullet in the shoulder. But, why wasn’t she trying to move the whole time. She could have moved enough to re-aim the gun away from the door. Always have little pet peeves about things when plot line doesn’t hold together.
For that matter, her hands were bolted in cuff to a table. She is left alone for a while and somehow she jumps up and attacks Ward and gives him a pretty good beating before Ward and 33 subdue her. How did she do that?
It turns out that Jiaying was something like Jim Jones and got people to drink the koolaid. She had several who were loyal to her and helped carry out her planned war on SHIELD and had no qualms about killing lots of people. Disappointingly, one of those was Gordon. Others went along with her because of her deceptions.
After killing Gonzales and shooting herself to make it look like Gonzales did it, she has Gordon and a couple of others “jump” onto one of the SHIELD jets, knock out or kill the crew, take it over and fire on the compound. But they only fired a couple of times, and only where Gonzales’ body was to cover up evidence and also to convince the inhumans that SHIELD was bad.
It turned out that one way Jiaying heals really quickly is to suck the life out of another person. While this was happening, Skye was talking to Raina who told Skye that her mother was a problem and that Skye would lead the inhumans.
Raina then goes to talk to Jiaying and tells her that she is an angel and one of an angels jobs is to spread the news and she was going to spread the news about what Jaiying was doing. Jaiying slits Raina’s throat just as Skye walks up to say she was going to join her mother. That of course didn’t happen.
Skye gets taken prisoner and Gordon, Jiaying and a force of inhumans goes to the aircraft carrier and takes it over. Their plan is to kill all the agents with the crystals and to lure agents from all over the world to the same fate.
Mack, who has decided to leave SHIELD but is still on the ship is the only one not rounded up. He getsto Skye and frees her and they work on getting a signal out to Coulsen.
Just before Coulson and Fitz and others leave to go save the aircraft carrier, Fitzimmons, seeing the interaction between Bobbi and Lance decides to talk to Fitz. He says, Now? You choose now to talk to me? Coulson comes in and they leave.
Skye manages to convince Gordon that Jiaying is manipulating people and wants the war. After some more fighting, they finally get control of the ship back. Gordon gets killed in an interesting way. He materializes behind Fitz, but the pole Fitz is holding goes through him completely by accident.
Calvin was given up to SHIELD to wreak havoc on them because of some strength enhancers he took. Coulson traps him and talks to him and makes him realize that both of their primary concerns is Skye/Daisy. He amazingly agrees to help against Jiaying.
In the end, Jiaying and some others are trying to fly off with crystals to rain destruction on the world. Skye goes to stop her bue Jiaying tries to kill her by sucking the life out of her. Skye after almost succumbing blows her back with her power and then pushes the plane off the deck into the ocean. Jiaying and Skye struggle again with their powers when Calvin walks up and says to Skye that he doesn’t want her to live with this the rest of her life and then kills his wife Jiaying.
Bobbi tells Lance she has had enough and wants out of SHIELD. Mack now trusts Coulson enough to stay in SHIELD and Coulson places him in charge of alien technology because Mack distrusts it so much. Melinda May is going to take a break and get away, possibly with her former husband. We see her putting some sexy lingerie in her bag as she packs up her locker. But then she goes back and gets her gun. Calvin was going to jail but Skye visits him with Coulson and Calvin has opened up a veterinary business and he doesn’t remember Skye. He had his mind wiped. Coulson makes Skye in charge of a team of inhumans for SHIELD. So far, just her till they figure it out.
Fitz and Jemma are making plans to go out for dinner. Jemma is alone in the room with the black rock/liquid thing and suddenly it breaks open the door, swallows Jemma up and goes back to being a rock.
Will we see a decrease in sales of food supplements? Last scene. Crystals at the bottom of the ocean dissolving and fish swimming by. Then fish being caught. Then fish being processed and vitamin or fish oil capsules being manufactured and shipped. Interesting set up for next season.
Unbroken is an amazing movie about Louis Zamperini. Great movie. I have heard the book is even better. The movie starts with Zamperini getting beaten up just because he was Italian. I had forgotten that there was just as much animosity to the most recent immigrants then, Italians and Irish, as there is against Mexicans and others now, if not more so.
The movie implied that one reason Louie became a good runner was it was the best way to keep from getting beaten up by a group of boys. Although this doesn’t mean he was a coward. It also shows him fighting with the boys.
Running and Track
Then his brother, who is on the track team sees Louie take off when he sees the group of boys. His brother starts pushing him and soon he is the star of the high school track team. Unlike now, in this era track was a big deal and a prestigious sport the way football is now.
Running got him a scholarship to the University of Southern California. He decided to try out for the 1936 Olympics in Berlin and made the team. One funny story that wasn’t in the movie was when he took the ship with other athletes to cross the Atlantic. Being in the depression he had never even bought food at a drug store. Apparently the food was included with the price of the ticket and he could eat as much as he wanted, which he did. Most of the athlete’s gained a good bit of weight on the trip. But it wasn’t a bad thing since they had lost so much weight training in intense heat for the Olympic trials in New York.
At the Olympics he beat the American record holder but only came in 8th. However he had the fastest final lap for that event in Olympic history to that point I believe. In college he set the record for the collegiate mile despite being badly cut by the spikes of competitors who were trying to slow him down. It stood for 15 years.
Zamperini enlisted and became a lieutenant and a bombardier on a B-24 in the Pacific. On one run the plane was damaged badly by flak and strafing but they managed to make it back. The plane was useless however and Zamperini and some of the others were reassigned to another plane that had the reputation of being a lemon and rightly so. They were out looking for a crew that had crashed in the water and while looking their engines cut out and they crashed. Only 3 survived the crash. The three of them had 2 life rafts and little food or water.
They survived by catching fish and essentially having sushi. They had to eat them raw. They also caught a couple sea birds and tried to eat them and used them as bait for the fish. As if these problems weren’t enough, they had to deal with sharks that were constantly trying to attack them. Then on top of all that, a Japanese plane strafed them and punctured the rafts. Luckily they were weren’t hit themselves and they were able to plug the leaks and stay afloat.
One thing that bothered me was that Zamperini seemed to maintain a pretty nice goatee during all this time floating in the raft despite losing weight and looking emaciated, his goatee stayed in impressively good shape.
Finally, after one of them has died and the other two are weak and feeble, Zamperini is awakened and says to the other, Well, the good news is we are rescued. The bad news is we are Japanese prisoners. Amazingly, they had survived for 47 days.
Prisoner of War
Louie and the other survivor, Phil were taken to a prison camp on an island and beaten mistreated. Then they were taken to the mainland and separated and went to different prison camps. Zamperini’s run by Watanabe nicknamed “The Bird”. To say the Bird was sadistic might be an understatement. In one scene, he forced every prisoner in the camp to punch Zamperini in the face. There were numerous other beatings and humilities but amazingly Zamperini and many of the others survived.
Incredible story, well worth watching.
Age of Ultron was good, but I liked the first Avengers better. Better banter. But I will have to watch it again because some of the dialogue was going by so fast I might have missed some of the funnier lines.
I will also be curious to see if Quicksilver somehow comes back. I wasn’t sure what kind of powers his sister, Scarlet Witch had. Seemed to involve the mind but then during the movie expanded to a lot more.
I was also surprised to read that the studio wanted to take out most of the scenes at Hawkeye/Jeremy Renner’s farmhouse. It made perfect sense and was a breather in between a lot of action.
I was disappointed by the main plot point – Computer Intelligence gone awry. That has been hashed over so many times. It was done well in War Games and then there was HAL in 2001. You can also include Eagle Eye and I Robot. And then of course there are the Matrix movies. Plus, it wasn’t clear why Ultron was acting the way he was. It seemed to change during the movie, starting with protecting them by eliminating them and then to I just want to dominate.
Also, there seems to be a complete disconnect with the TV show Agents of SHIELD. I saw one interview online where Joss Whedon says for the movies Agent Coulsen is dead and will remain dead. I think he isa bit miffed that as they were getting the TV show off the ground, SHIELD was mostly destroyed in the movies and they had to scramble to have everything make sense in the TV show.
Also, what was that thing that looked like a blue Hulk at the end during the credits?
Hey, I am excited. This is the first post in the new Hiyono website. Look for more content tomorrow!