Steranko on latest S.H.I.E.L.D. ep: 'Intolerably corrupting series' entertainment value’

The latest installment in comic legend Jim Steranko’s weekly Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. reviews has arrived, and it sounds like the former Nick Fury co-creator is coming way down from last week’s creative high.

Though the series continues to struggle in the ratings, the last couple episodes have upped the ante creatively — with last week’s installment “Turn, Turn, Turn” serving as a highlight of the first season’s run. Steranko agreed, but he was none too impressed with this week’s follow-up, “Providence.”

Steranko called the episode a return to mediocrity, arguing the producers failed to pay off on the shocking twist that left viewers with their jaws on the floor last week. Check out a choice excerpt below:

“Unfortunately, the promise forecast by last week’s adventure -- head and shoulders the best of the lot -- was nothing more than that. While the lighting, cinematography and editing were more fluid than that of most others, and the dialogue generally smarter and tighter, with "Providence" the show dropped back to being not driven by the mission, but honed to set up future situations -- a rehash policy I find intolerably corrupting to the series' entertainment value.

What the hell is wrong with telling a solid, entertaining, complete story with ongoing characters that grow exponentially during each offering, such as Law & Order or Dexter or The X-Files? Instead of maintaining the dramatic plateau it captured in the previous couple of weeks, Agents of SHIELD was back to its old tricks last night.”

Ouch. Ouch, ouch, ouch. Steranko’s sometimes-curmudgeonly reviews of the series have been fun to follow over at The Hollywood Reporter, and it’s hard to blame the guy for setting high standards for the series. Marvel has been wowing us for years, and fans expect a certain level of quality from every project now. It’s the double-edged sword of being among the best.

Did you agree with Steranko’s assessment, or is he being too rough on Coulson and the gang?

(Via The Hollywood Reporter)

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