Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1, Episode 5: “Girl In A Flower Dress” Recap

marvel's agents of shield skye naked

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. gets hot & steamy in “Girl In A Flower Dress”. Plus Skye’s true motivation is finally revealed.

Continue reading for a spoiler filled discussion of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1, Episode 5.

Hello Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fans and everybody else! This is a brief and very late recap. I won’t be recapping every story beat, but I’ll be happy to discuss the show with you further in the comments section.

Based on the first five episodes, the show could facetiously be retitled ‘Skye and the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’  Skye is our P.O.V character, the person taking us into the inner workings of S.H.I.E.L.D. The writers want her to be the emotional heart of the series and for viewers to see this super human world through her eyes. But’s she’s not resonating in the way the show needs her to be. Not yet.

If you’re a fan of BBC’s Torchwood, you’ll recognize that Gwen Cooper served a similar function as an ‘audience surrogate’. Gwen began as a new agent recruited into a top-secret agency that defends Earth from supernatural and extra-terrestrial threats. Through out the series, Gwen wrestles with what is the moral thing to do as well as balances her normal family life with her work responsibilities.  You know when she’s not battling aliens.

While Gwen Cooper’s conflicting nature is universally relatable and adds depth to her character, Skye is divisive to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s fan base. Beyond detractor’s nitpicks that Skye’s humour is more hammy than witty or she wears fashionable clothes yet lived in a van for two years or even that she doesn’t fit our preconceived notion of what a hacker should look like, her core beliefs are at odds which is a challenge to reconcile.

If Skye believes in freedom of information why would she want to work for an espionage agency? The end of episode two presented an explanation: she’s a double agent. Fair enough, but as a possible mole, an operative that is secretly working against S.H.I.E.L.D.’s agenda, she no longer functions as our audience surrogate. Imbuing Skye with ulterior motives and duplicity makes it harder to identify with and invest in her. If she’s our protagonist, viewers need a compelling reason or an emotional connection to be on her side. 

In a few ways, episode five reframes our perspective of Skye, not so much with revelations but with missing pieces to a puzzle.  We learn that Skye adopted her hacktivist views from a mentor/lover whom she looked up to. Though not necessarily her own intrinsic values, she has to come to terms with them when her mentor who embodies these ideals becomes corrupt.

In the end, Skye takes a stand for the principles she truly believes in when an innocent man’s life is at stake due to classified information ending up in the wrongs hands. This episode depicts Skye rejecting Rising Tide’s way of thinking and while not embracing all of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s methods (can you say body probes?), she sides with Coulson and company.

Like many viewers conjectured, Coulson sensed Skye is hiding something more. Learning the truth that becoming a Rising Tide hackactivist and joining S.H.I.E.L.D is really a pretense for finding info on her birth parents, helps to align the seemingly disparate elements within Skye. 

While this episode might not untangle all the knots (or noose) the writers inadvertently made for themselves with Skye’s initial character arc, it thankfully book ends the Rising Tide ‘not a double agent’ story line. The mystery with what happened to her parents and how it’s connected to S.H.I.E.L.D. will hopefully be a story arc that strengthens her character rather than pull it apart.

Moving forward her function on the team, aside of her computer hacking skills, can be to pull in the reigns when S.H.I.E.L.D.’s shady sense of ethics and justice gets out of control. (What’s the deal with the bracelets?) I hope upcoming episodes will show Skye earning back the confidence of her teammates as well as viewers who have issues with her portrayal so far.


The second half of the episode is by far the stronger half. What I liked about Scorch is how his need for recognition and glory which was hinted at in the opening magic scene became twisted and consuming. I also liked the notion that if S.H.I.E.L.D. took a proactive role in grooming Chan Ho Yin he possibly could have been guided to become a force for the greater good.

At the same time, Chan’s dark character flaw has always been a part of him. Centipede just accelerated his corruption with the super power injections and by taking away the part of him that kept him from combusting. There’s also the underlying allegory of Scorch’s uncontrollable ‘roid rage’ after one too many injections to boost his powers which is effective on a basic storytelling level, albeit is not exactly sosphicated writing.

What is did you like or dislike about “Girl In The Flower Dress”? Who is the clairvoyant? Did you like Raina?

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Posted on November 2, 2013, in Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., Television and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. I’m so behind on watching this as I’ve been so busy! Hmmm, things heated up eh? I’m super curious about Skye’s motivation. I guess I might have to catch up tomorrow!

    • Fortunately, there’s wasn’t a new episode this past week which gives some time for those who are catching up on previous episodes and to me for writing recaps. Yeah, things “heated” up … it’s a play on words that’ll make sense after watching the episode. 🙂 Hope you enjoy it.

      • I finally saw it last night. I enjoyed it! I like that they finally revealed Skye’s background and makes me curious what happens next w/ her in terms of team dynamics. Oh, glad there isn’t a new episode this week though I won’t be able to watch this week’s episode until Wed either.

        • Glad you enjoyed it and that your still sticking with the show! After Skye broke her trust with the team, Mays and Ward didn’t look very pleased to see her and I’m also curious how this effects the team dynamics. I’m behind on many shows but this is the only show on Tuesdays I keep up with.

  2. I have to agree that Skye is not connecting. It seems viewers were supposed to feel bad for Skye and the fact she was an orphan, but I was just happy that they resolved the “is she or isn’t she a double agent” question. I don’t dislike her, just not too overtly concerned what happens to her. Will be interested to find out who the clairvoyant is since I’m not familiar enough with Marvel history to even hazard a guess.
    Also read a day or two ago that the tv show will be doing a tie in with the second Thor movie. I understand that the Nov. 19th episode is to continue where the film left off. What that means if you can’t see the movie before the 19th, I don’t know. I’ll guess we’ll see.

    • For the amount screen time given to Skye, I think the writers would have hoped she’d won over more viewers by now. Although I like her, her character alone cannot carry this show and the rest of the cast is getting slow development because the story revolves her at this point. I also don’t feel an immense sympathy for Skye, though I can understand why she would want to know more about her parents and why a sense of belonging is important to her.

      I’m not well versed in Marvel’s comic book stuff either. Who knows, maybe the clairvoyant will be a new character specifically written for the show? I haven’t watched Thor, it’s not out in theatres here yet. I hope they can do the tie in so that viewers who haven’t watched Thor can easily pick up on info like in a SHIELD Headquarters briefing scene. Or a lot of shows like to incorporate TV news reports that give the background info. If I don’t get to watch Thor in time, I at least hope not to feel lost. My guess is that SHIELD agents will handle the background ripple effects of what happens in Thor.

  3. Hey man, I was waiting for your review for AGES! I mean I’m just a bit inconsistent, but you’re always on time so when I didn’t see your review online I was a bit worried. But anyways let’s talk about this episode.

    I thought it was another strong episode for AoS as it gives us a bit more of fleshed out background for Skye while also providing us with a new character, Scorch. I thought Skye was interesting in this episode, even if she was still a bitch double-crossed the good guys. The whole thing with her mentor/lover was nice as it again fleshed her out. but right now I just wish I could like, she seems to be moving to the right side of things but she’s still too dodgy for me to invest in.

    As for Scorch I loved his character, see this is a guy with natural abilities, he just does tricks for fun would like to be recognized on a larger scale. Add to that that he’s a very humble guy who isn’t demented, he just wants a chance to become bigger than he is and those are the reasons why I connected with him and thought he was a creditable character. And like you said because of his ambition you can see it consume him when he becomes very powerful.

    I also liked Coulson’s perceptiveness when it came to Skye and his action scenes. The whole change in scenery in Hong Kong was nice and pretty. I especially like how we’re getting connections back to the first episode with centipede, Raina was super mysterious but at the same time so cool and the fact that Dr. Debbie got wasted in this episode was right surprising but at the same time pretty satisfying too. Just makes me wonder what is going on behind the scenes with that organization and whether they’ll become a massive problem for SHIELD further down the line which I personally hope that they will.

    • Hey there! Thanks for waiting for the review haha. I started writing it the day of the episode but I have trouble putting thoughts into words so it kept getting delayed and I lost some motivation. 🙂

      Since episodes are less than one hour, minus the commercials, there needs to be some shortcuts to get from A to B but some little things in the first half I had trouble with (but I didn’t bother to mention it in the review). Luckily I liked the second half more. I liked they wrapped up whether or not Skye is a double agent .Yeah, for a lot of people Skye is too dodgy to invest in. In this episode, she’s trying to protect her mentor but by doing so betrayed her new teammates.

      I also saw Scorch as a guy who isn’t demented, he’s a decent fellow who wants to be recognized and feel empowered. He could have been a good guy on SHIELD’s side. It’s possible he can return because we never saw his body blow up, we only saw the flames and explosion coming out of the building.

      Coulson has a good instinct for his team and knows how to handle Skye. I also thought Melinda Mays had some great moments. She’s has a way of sneaking up on people.

      I was a little disappointed that Dr. Debbie died. If I recall, she’s the one that got saved by the Hooded Hero jumping out the building in the pilot. It would have been cool to build her up as a major thorn in SHIELD’s side. I do like Raina and she solidified her treachery by leaving Dr. Debbie to die a horrible death. Yeah, looks like Centipede is making a super solider. I hope to see more of that story building up over the course of the season.

  4. This is probably the best episode but its incredible self contained. I liked the idea of scorch and the line “Great they’ve given him a name” was hysterical but in the end again he dies and non of it meant anything. And how is Skye still on the team? SHIELD is far too relaxed for me, completly unbelievable 😦

    • I really liked that line as well. It’s funny and perceptive. There was a big fiery explosion but maybe Scorch can still return since he never saw his death?

      I lot of stuff is far fetched. Like how is Skye on the team to begin with?

      Even if Skye’s is trying to prove her innocence while Fitz-Simmons keeps a close eye on her, it’s a stretch for any real law enforcement agency to let a person investigate a case where they are the prime suspect.

  5. I liked this episode, and I still think the show is moving in the right direction, though it’s taking a little longer to do so than I originally hoped. 😦 Skye is a really interesting character. I’d like to see the writers continue working on her development. I think she can click with audiences eventually.

    I also really liked the Fitz-Simmons characters development in tonight’s episode about the alien virus. I think that’s another step in the right direction.

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