Agents of SHIELD – Mother/Father/Daughter

Alright fellow Nerdom dwellers, I had intended to do one final post on the end of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 2, but the whole damn thing became too long and only really touched on just a few things I wanted to say about each character and ark. So here is what I’m gonna do. I will to do a post per character/ark so that way I will be able fully articulate what in the hell is going on in the show and my hopes for season 3. You can read about Ward/Kara here, enjoy some coffee with Cal here, and relive the drama that is Bobbie and Hunter here.

I am not talking Jiaying, Cal, and Daisy. I want talk about the family dynamic that is May, Coulson, and Skye. I know I said I was going to do Fitz-Simmons next, but I had this one all ready to go and with the rumors Ming Na Wen might leave the show in the middle of season 3, I decided to talk about the family aspect of the show.

Show: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2

Stars: Clark Gregg, Ming-Na Wen, Chloe Bennet, Iain De Caestecker, Elizabeth Henstridge, Brett Dalton, Nick Blood, Henry Simmons, Adrianne Palicki, Ruth Negga, Kyle MacLachlan, Edward James Olmos, Dichen Lachman, Maya Stojan, Luke Mitchell, Jamie Harris

From the beginning of the show, these May, Coulson, and Skye have had a strong family dynamic. There was the older brother aspect Ward provided, and the other sibling’s vibe we got from Fitz-Simmons. But Ward was revealed to be a Hydra spy and Fitz-Simmons grew up into their roles as agents within SHIELD. The other team members starting down their own paths managed to strengthen the familial bond May and Coulson had with Skye because it was going to take the two of them to keep her strong enough to fight for the family. By the end of season 1, Coulson became the director of SHIELD, effectively making him head of household, and May took over as Skye’s SO, molding Skye into her image as mothers tend to do.

The difference in how May and Coulson work to raise Skye is fascinating. Coulson wants nothing more than to protect Skye from her father, from her powers, and from others willing to do her harm. He almost tries to keep her in a bubble, even though he knows she could take care of herself. May in the beginning tried to push her away and keep Skye from forming too close of an attachment. This was May’s way of protecting Skye from feeling disappointment when May would be unable to return any of her sentiment. But when the shit hit the fan and Skye needed a new supervising officer, May stepped up and started to mold her into a SHIELD worthy agent. Instead of throwing herself in front of Skye to keep her safe, she gave her the skills to survive with or without May.

Funny enough, this is how the real dynamics of the mother/father/daughter relationships work. The father wants his daughter to say young, innocent, and safe. The mother wants to teach her daughter the wisdom to stand on her own and be the best woman she can be.

Skye’s real parents came into the picture during season two, but it served strengthen the original family rapport. Cal loves his daughter more than anything, but he is willing to throw her into the fire with no thoughts of consequences because he thinks that is best for her and does not have a plan to help her handle the transformation from human to Inhuman. He became too distracted by the need for revenge that he left her to Coulson and May to clean up his mess. Jiaying also loved her daughter very much, but didn’t do anything to find Skye after Cal put Jiaying back together. She gave her up for lost or dead. She eventually helped to train Skye when she made the transformation, but constantly withheld any emotions from her and resisted developing too much of a maternal bond. May was the same way, but even when she was hurt be Skye’s need for her real mother, May didn’t abandon her. Jiaying became too driven by the need for revenge and domination that she was willing to sacrifice her daughter to get it.

May and Coulson have done nothing but put themselves into the fire to keep Skye safe from harm. After Skye made the transformation, they knew something was up, but they didn’t know what that would be. When Skye chose to hold back from a fight out of fear her powers would manifest and give away what happened to her, Coulson and May confronted her about it. Skye told them everything was okay and she was just nervous about the fight itself. Coulson took what she said at face value because he wanted nothing more than to believe Skye was okay and nothing happened to her. May saw right thru the lie, but holds back from questioning her further. May knows she will get the truth eventually. When the transformation is revealed, they were afraid for her and how her powers will affect her. They were willing to take on two alien creatures that could easily kill them both to keep her safe. Coulson tried to fight them, May tried to get Skye to remember her training to show she was not a threat.

Going forward, there is going to be a lot of Coulson learning how to let go and let Skye/Daisy go and be a grownup. The journey is going to be an emotional one, but it will be fun to watch. For May going forward, the journey is going to be about forgiving Daisy for choosing her real mother over her. She didn’t show too much emotion about it, but she did show enough that you did see the hurt when Daisy fought May to keep her from confronting Jiaying. There will be some strain between them when May continues to help Daisy use her powers to fight.

What did you guys think of the family dynamic created by May, Coulson, and Skye? Did you think Coulson was too much of an overprotective father? Do you think May could have been a more emotionally bonded mother? What are you looking forward to seeing from these three in the next season? Sound off in the comment section. Next time I will get to Fitz-Simmons, I swear.

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About Nerdling

The Nerdling has an unhealthy obsession with books, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and Star Wars. She finds hockey to be the best sport in the world (Go Dallas Stars!) and is working on her first novel, but mostly glowers at a blank screen. You can find her on Twitter @nerdlingstale on Facebook @NerdlingTales or Instagram @nerdling_tales

2 comments on “Agents of SHIELD – Mother/Father/Daughter

    • I really hope Ming-Na Wen stays as well. Despite May not being an outwardly emotional person, she manages to be a big part of the emotional center of the group. Phil is the heart, but she is like the lungs. They don’t function properly without one another.

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