I really had no idea this show was going to get good. I’m not even sure why I was watching it, I was just using it to fill space in my eyeballs when I was too tired to watch something interesting, and then WHOOSH.
Stakes are higher. Plots are less predictable. Action is more exciting and more frequent. Editing has tightened to push the viewer from scene to scene. Through-plots have pay-offs. Exposition is not so loud nor so obvious (although this is sometimes still a problem). Dialogue is much better, although not at the level of Whedon’s best. Episodes vary in structure so it’s not all Puzzle of the Week. Characters have shown complexity previously unseen.
Why did this show suck so badly for most of this season, and then get better, and then knock it out of the park in the last four weeks?
I suspect that Marvel’s Big Plan played a hand. Certain plot elements depended upon events in Captain America: Winter Soldier. It seems to me that ABC was left twiddling its thumbs with this show until the Big Blockbuster Movie was released, unable to contradict or reveal the movie’s key elements as related to SHIELD. So Agents of SHIELD was left with too many episodes in which to build too little backstory, all while doing the normal new series floundering for a voice.
Anyway. Two months ago I would not have imagined the show would have been renewed, much less that I would be enthusiastic about it. Surprise!