Welcome to S.H.I.E.L.D. Dossiers, a weekly look back at some of the Easter eggs from ABC's new series Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. If you've read Arrow Annotations, our weekly look at CW's Arrow show, you'll have a basic idea of what this column is about. While this won't be a comprehensive collection of Easter eggs and references to the comics/movies (I'm going to skip some of the more obvious references), I will do my darndest to catch as many as I can.
Here we go!
[Note: I watched this episode at 5 AM this morning, so my observational skills might have been a bit impacted due to tiredness. I've done my best, but I didn't find too much to talk about this week.]
Roxann Dawson - This episode was directed by Roxann Dawson, who Star Trek fans might recognize as B'Elanna Torres from Star Trek: Voyager. She's previously directed episodes of Lost, Heroes and Caprica.
Sergel Square, Stockholm - Marvel's Agents of SHIELD continues to be set in real world locations. Sergel Square is a central public square of Stockholm. Swedes traditionally celebrate at the fountain of Sergel Square after national sports victories.
On a related note, a person on Reddit took a lot of time to explain how the show's depiction of the square was not at all like real life. Because television shows featuring alien technology should really get the details of Swedish train station entrances right.
No ESP - I thought it was interesting that the show went out of its way to eliminate telepathy and ESP from their world, considering the comic books have a Psi-Division consisting solely of telepaths and psychics.
Akela Amador - She's a character specifically created for the TV show. You might recognize her voice if you've played the Grand Theft Auto series, though. She played a DJ in both Grand Theft Auto 4 and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories.
Vanchat: Amador disappeared while raiding one of Vanchat's gulags. This isn't the first time we've heard Vanchat's name in the show. Ward stole a Chitauri nueral link from him in the opening scenes of the pilot episode.
Coulson's Collection - Here's some screenshots of Coulson's collection of stuff. I didn't see anything of note, but maybe you could piece something together. (Thanks to Reddit user Bird_internet for these).
Zhores Alferov - Simmons mentions that Zloda, Belarus (totally made up town, by the way) is close to the birthplace of Zhores Alferov, the father of heterostructure physics and electronics. His work on the heterotransistor revolutionized mobile phones and satellite communication, and also led to the modernization of LED technology and CDs. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2000.
Cybernetic eyes - There are plenty of Marvel characters with cybernetic eyes, including Cable, Revanche and Crossfire.
That weird lettering on the chalkboard - Frankly, this is the only real Easter Egg this episode. That's Skrull lettering, as developed by Chris Eliopoulos for Marvel's Secret Invasion event back in 2009. Here's a full alphabet for the interested. However, don't get too excited about translating the chalkboard. It's all letter sequences (cde, klmn) and gibberish.
Like I said, it's gibberish.
However, this does give us an opportunity to talk about the Skrulls, a longtime foe of the Avengers and general scourge upon the Marvel universe. First introduced in Fantastic Four #2, the Skrulls are a race of shapeshifters that view Earth as a sort of promised land, and have often tried to infiltrate the Earth for their own means. They've faced off against the Kree Empire (which are due to appear in Guardians of the Galaxy) and also have select warriors that can mimic the powers of Earth's superheroes.
The Chitauri (the aliens from The Avengers) were originally conceived in The Ultimates as a modernized version of the Skrulls, so its possible that Whedon is borrowing their langauge as well.
The Englishman - Dominic Burgess, who played the Englishman, previously played a cop in the Narrows in Batman Begins.
And that's all I found this week. On a side note, this was probably the best episode so far, don't you think?
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