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Recap / Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. S1 E11 "The Magical Place"

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Skye channels her inner May.

Coulson uncovers vital information about the mystery of his death, but with Centipede out for blood, this knowledge may come at the cost of one of the team.


  • Acting Unnatural: When Skye thinks FitzSimmons are giving her a sandwich: "Yes. It is that."
  • And I Must Scream: The secret about Coulson is revealed; after being dead for days, he was brought back using multiple surgeries, all implied to be rather unethical. The seventh has a robot poking at his brain to rewrite his memories while he begs the doctors to let him die.
  • Big Damn Heroes: The dream team comes to Skye's rescue, and together they come to Coulson's.
  • Break the Cutie:
  • Brick Joke: Skye takes note of the car with the Vanity Plate early into breaking into Rathson's place. Eventually she leaves the place in it.
  • Call-Back: An agent is told 'Don't touch Lola', just like what Coulson told another agent in the pilot episode. This time however, the order is given by Skye.
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  • Came Back Wrong: After episodes of implication, this is finally all but outright stated by Dr. Streiten.
    Streiten: We didn't want you to be that... thing.
    Coulson: What did I become, doctor? Tell me.
  • Car Fu: Skye is being chased by one of the Centipede soldiers and gets cornered. Cue May and her SUV saving the day.
  • Cool Car: Rich boy Lloyd Rathson has a garage full of them.
  • Continuity Nod: The Clairvoyant, after speaking to Raina, has her hand the phone back to Po. The phone emits a tone that kills him, similar to Obadiah Stane's paralyzer device in the first Iron Man movie.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Lloyd Rathson, working with Vanchat and other "bad people".
  • Cuffs Off, Rub Wrists: Skye after Coulson removes her tracking bracelet.
  • Cut the Juice: Skye and May find Coulson connected to a machine that is forcing him to relive the highly traumatic operations he was put through to save his life after New York. Skye tries to turn the machine off through the controls. May just unplugs it.
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  • Danger Takes a Backseat: Coulson confronts Streiten this way.
  • Disappeared Dad: Rathson is one to his son. Rathson thinks of himself as a cool dad until Skye-as-May disabuses him of that illusion.
  • Exact Words:
    • Hand asked May if Skye was of any use to them on the plane. May said "No." May answered truthfully, but also set up Skye to be able to search for Coulson unhindered by Hand and SHIELD bureaucracy.
    • Coulson's reassurance to Skye that "they were just messing with [his] head." She assumed he meant Centipede, but he was actually referring to SHIELD operating on his brain.
  • Evil Plan: The Clairvoyant really wants to know how Coulson survived Loki's attack. Raina states this is because he wants super soldiers that will never die. Between the time and effort it takes to reproduce Coulson's resurrection, and the extreme psychological trauma it causes, the process is not practical for said aim.
  • Gallows Humor: Coulson reassures Skye that he's fine and says "they were just messing with my head." It's also an In-Joke, as Skye won't know what he's referring to.
  • Good Cop/Bad Cop: Po as the bad cop with his torture and Raina as good cop with her faux-sympathy.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: Skye when she impersonates May. May even compliments the look.
  • High-Altitude Interrogation: When Vanchat proves uncooperative, Ward takes over the interrogation, straps himself to the wall, then has Fitzsimmons open the ceiling so Vanchat is nearly sucked out of the plane.
  • Irony: During the episode Coulson is being held captive by Raina and the rest of Centipede and being tortured for information. Following the episode's conclusion, it is likely the roles will be reversed.
  • Neck Lift: One of the super-soldiers stops Coulson this way when he is about to attack Po.
  • Not Quite Dead:
    • Mike Peterson didn't die in the explosion. He woke up in a cell-like room to find that his right leg had been cut off and that he has now been implanted with the same eye technology that Akela had.
    • At the end of the episode, Centipede itself, despite Po being dead, Raina being in custody and the global locations shut down one-by-one. This is likely due to the Clairvoyant still being out there.
  • Oh, Crap!: Having seen one of the fake eyes kill one of the super-soldiers when he was about to be captured and been told by the team about Akela's experience, Mike knows how much trouble he's in when he can see instructions on his eye when he looks in the mirror.
  • Spoiler Opening: The opening credits clearly show J. August Richards (Mike Peterson) among the cast.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Coulson pulls this on Streiten.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Both Coulson and Mike.
  • Vanity License Plate: $BLSYAL
    Skye: Dollar bills, y'all.
  • Wham Line:
    Dr. Streiten: You weren't dead for 8 seconds, or 40 seconds, or whatever they put in your file. You were dead for... days.
  • You Have Failed Me: The Clairvoyant has Po killed for his failure in retrieving Coulson's secrets and starts talking directly to Raina.

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