I’m a fan of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., have been since the first season. I think it’s the old school Buffy/Angel reviewer in me that was just happy to have any Whedon presence back on the small screen. This season, they’ve been hitting it right out of the park. Last night was no exception.
But rather than bore you with a recap, I’ll drop the one nerdy bit that’s kept coming back to me all day. As the show opened, Sam Koenig, the seemingly omnipresent S.H.I.E.L.D. executive admin, lies in bed while the song “Robot Tourist” plays in the background.
Why does this nerd me out? (Warning, major nerd theorizing ahead – turn back now before your eyes roll straight back)
A. In the TV show, the Koenig brothers are everywhere, installed in every single S.H.I.E.L.D. safe house, secret base, and bolt hole. And they’re all played by the same actor, Patton Oswalt.
B. In the comics, S.H.I.E.L.D. mythology is rife with instances of people being killed and popping back up or simply appearing in multiple places at the same time, due to something called Life Model Decoys (or LMDs). They’re the ultimate plot loophole where sophisticated robots or clones take the place of the original (Nick Fury had an army of younger versions of himself defending him recently in the comics).
C. Back on the show, they haven’t yet admitted that Koenig and his kin are, in fact, LMDs. The production staff has gone out of their way to ignore the fact that the characters on the show think it’s pretty damn odd that there’s a platoon of identical agents.
Which brings us back to last night. Notice I said that Sam was lying in bed, not sleeping? His passive stare and the song itself pointed some big honking arrows at the fact that the Koenig brothers may not be all that they appear to be. Will there ever be a definitive answer to whether or not LMDs populate the Marvel Cinematic and TV universe? Maybe. But I kind of hope that there isn’t. Last night was a great tip of the hat to us Marvel nerds out there, the production staff saying, “Don’t worry, we got this.” And there’s nothing I appreciate more in comic shows than knowing those running the show are just as geeky as I am.