'Agents of SHIELD': Fasten Your Seatbelts for a Bumpy Flight (And an Unexpected Cameo)

Skye has officially signed on as a S.H.I.E.L.D. consultant, to Agent Ward's chagrin. Why, she isn't a scientist—she's just a no-good, lousy hacker, with questionable loyalties at that! Harumph. Despite pseudo-Bond's objections, Skye joins the team on the Bus, the swanky plane that Nick Fury gifted Coulson when his injury (i.e., apparent death) knocked him out of commission.

They fly to Peru to track down an "0-8-4," code for an object of unknown origin. (The last one, Coulson winks, was a hammer.) An archaeologist has made an eerie discovery in an ancient Incan temple. Whatever this suspiciously metallic artifact is, it whirs and flies and casts beams of light in a decidedly un-ancient fashion—though the evidence indicates that it's been in place for 1500 years. And, also, that it's German?

Fitz and Simmons banter charmingly about the possibility of encountering a yellow-tailed woolly monkey—which, delightfully, is a thing that exists. Despite her reluctance to engage in any combat, Melinda May proves surprisingly badass during an ambush by the military police. But the conflict is quickly defused when Coulson recognizes their leader as Comandate Camilla Reyes, who happens to be gorgeous, and also his former coworker, and also maybe more than his former coworker? Iiiiiinteresting.

An attack by rebel forces puts a damper on their flirtatious reunion. The agents make it back safely to the Bus, Camilla and company in tow. On board, Fitz determines that the artifact is powered by Tesseract tech and could emit a lethal dose of gamma radiation—making that funky little whatever-it-is everyone's least favorite co-passenger.Nevertheless, the plane takes off, and Ward and Skye take a moment to warm up to each other a little. She explains the collaborative merits of Rising Tide. He shows off the bullet wound he just sustained like it ain't no thing. Okay, that's kind of hot.

Changed from her standard-issue fatigues into a swanky little black dress she apparently had on hand for the occasion, Camilla does her best to seduce Coulson—but her advances are merely a diversion from the coup her men are mounting elsewhere on the plane. Reyes wants to use the weapon, originally designed by Nazi scientists (obviously), to quash the rebel uprising and stabilize her country once and for all.

Remember how we thought Melinda May was badass before? We had no idea what we were talking about. This lady is actually double-badass. She escapes from the ropes that bind her arms by dislocating her wrist, then frees her fellow agents. Though the S.H.I.E.L.D. team spent most of the episode squabbling, they're now ready to band together in the face of a common enemy.

Fitz and Simmons irradiate the device, blasting a hole in the side of the Bus. This, along with running out of ginger ale or complimentary headphones, is one of the very worst things that can happen to a plane. The good guys successfully fight off the bad guys, some of whom get sucked out of cabin, as May reclaims control of the cockpit. Skye resourcefully seals the hole by inflating the on-board life raft.

Back on the ground, the team happily drinks beers as they watch the 0-8-4 get shot into the sun. Reyes is held in a detainment center, Coulson having saved her from a death by suction on the Bus. Now invested in Skye's future as potential agent, Ward agrees to become her supervising officer. But a suspicious text message ("I'm in") shows that Skye still maintains shady ties to Rising Tide.

But that's not all, folks. The end of the episode treats us to the Nick Fury cameo it feels like we've already been waiting forever for. He chews out Coulson for trashing the Bus, and warns him that Skye is a risk. Sam Jackson, is there some way you can be in every episode of this show?

Image via ABC