'Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.' Theory Says Mack & Bobbi Are S.T.R.I.K.E. & That'd Actually Be A Good Thing
Last Tuesday's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. befuddled us when Mack revealed that the secret organization he and Bobbi Morse are working for is just another branch of S.H.I.E.L.D., one that I assume formed after the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. I still like my original theory that the two of them are actually CIA, but this revelation opens a new possibility — what if S.T.R.I.K.E. is coming to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.?
Comicbook.com mentions that the term was used in Winter Solider as the name of a small team that turned out to be Hydra Agents, however, if the name was re-appropriated from the comics once, it can be again. In Marvel Comics, S.T.R.I.K.E. is an organization lead by Lance Hunter. They have an even more convoluted acronym once spelled out: "Special Tactical Reserve for International Key Emergencies." They are, for all intents and purposes, the UK branch of S.H.I.E.L.D.
I know what you're thinking. Bobbi and Mack aren't British! They're the least British. Neither is Edward James Olmos, who's new character, Robert Gonzalez, appears to be working with the "real S.H.I.E.L.D." and giving Bobbi and Mack their orders. Here's what I say to that — who cares? What if they were on assignment in England when Hydra struck S.H.I.E.L.D. down?
There are a plethora of agents on Coulson's team, including a few from the other side of the pond. The Marvel Cinematic Universe doesn't have to be so strict and keep S.T.R.I.K.E. exclusively British. Besides, its addition would allow for a fun, new, female superhero, Psylocke, to join the fray. She is a mutant in the comics, but come be presented as an Inhuman to better fit the S.H.I.E.L.D. mythology.
There's only one thing that confuses me about Bobbi and Mack's possible involvement in this group. I'm not even concerned that they were spying on Agent Coulson — he's been through a lot of weird stuff and I'm sure this other organization wants to check him out before making their move. What bothers me is Bobbi's hesitation to tell Lance Hunter about her alliance to this group. If it's just another S.H.I.E.L.D., especially a British S.H.I.E.L.D., why the fuss? It seems like he would love to know.
I wonder if this has something to do with Lucy Lawless' character Isabelle Hartley. We first met Hunter when he was working for Hartley. The two of them seemed incredibly close, though platonic, and there was definitely some story left over with Isabelle's sister Jane. Here's a potential twist — Lawless is set to guest star in two weeks, according to Marvel's description of the episode "One Door Closes." Is this a flashback, or is Hartley still alive? I'm guessing the former. We've seen some miraculous recoveries on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but Hartley died at the hands of the diviner/obelisk and that's hard to come back from, unfortunately.
Was Hartley part of "the real S.H.I.E.L.D." as well? Was part of her mission to plant herself and Lance Hunter on Coulson's team? Perhaps Bobbi doesn't want to reveal to Lance that he was a traitor all along and didn't know it. This is all starting to feel like The Others on Lost. How long has this "real S.H.I.E.L.D." been around and what are they planning with our heroes? S.T.R.I.K.E. would be a recognizable name to give to this group, and it would set Lance Hunter up for a pretty cool new mission on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Images: Patrick Wymore/ABC; Giphy (2)