A Chinese man named Chan can create fire from nothing, in the palm of his hand.
(Like Doc Ock says in SPIDER-MAN 2, “The power of the sun, in the palm of my hand!”)
Chan is approached by a mysterious woman in a flower dress. She convinces him to take on a superhero-esque name and show off his powers. After all, as she says, no one knows the name Steve Rogers, but everyone recognizes Captain America.
So, Scorch is born. (The girl in the flower dress’s idea).
Apparently becoming a superhero or supervillain is an important lesson in branding.
Before Chan can use his powers to bed the seductive girl in the flower dress, he is captured by men in fireproof suits that answer to the mysterious woman.
S.H.I.E.L.D. has been watching Chan, as well as other ‘exceptional human beings’ that are on a list. A very short list. A list that had to have been hacked, as Chan was told to lay low. Yet still the girl in the flower dress and her people knew exactly where to find Chan aka Scorch.
Coulson and team track down the hacker, Miles, a member of The Crimson Tide, the very organization that Skye was at the heart of in ‘The Pilot.’
Skye tips off Miles and he escapes! Then she meets him at a safe house. Skye is still part of Crimson Tide (as was hinted at in the second episode “0-8-4”)! At least, her boyfriend, Miles, is and she is unhappy that he hacked S.H.I.E.L.D. After all, she is inside the organization already, so he is only putting her infiltration in danger. Is Skye playing both sides for S.H.I.E.L.D.’s benefit like in the episode “Asset”? Or is she real trouble for Agent Coulson’s team?
Of course, Skye is BUSTED by Melinda May, as the whole team is set up in Miles living room. Coulson and Wade are reasonably upset, but Skye insists she too is unhappy that Miles sold the information he hacked from the Chinese division of S.H.I.E.L.D. for a million dollars.
Who paid for the information? Does the organization referred to as ‘The Centipede’ ring any bells? (It should, as this episode ties right back into ‘The Pilot.’)
The girl in the flower dress gives a serum to Scorch (aka Chan) which makes him more powerful than ever! But Chan is quickly taken down and restrained. The serum he was given… just an old doozy known as Extremis.
So returns the doctor from ‘The Pilot’. Scorch’s special abilities allow the Extemis they injected in his system to stabilize.
That’s right, this Centipede organization has done something A.I.M. and even Tony Stark could not, and they need Scorch’s cells to do it. His blood platelets are fire resistant, which is why they are removing them to stabilize Extremis!
S.H.I.E.L.D. catches up to Scorch and the Centipede organization, Scorch burns the scientist from the Pilot alive, and Melinda May sets Scorch to blow (as there is no other option), classic IRON MAN 3 Extremis style…only much bigger! The girl in the flower dress escapes… with a stable extremis!
Coulson is visibly upset that they could not help Chan.
Melinda May: “You can’t save someone from them-self, sir.”
Coulson: “You can if you reach them early enough.”
Climax over, Coulson still wants to know where Skye’s allegiance lies. It turns out, she has infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D. to learn more about her parents! The only file that exists about her parents is redacted by S.H.I.E.L.D.
Where they agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? Superhumans S.H.I.E.L.D tracked?
Coulson tells Skye she may not like what she will find, but still offers to help.
‘The Girl in the Flower Dress’ ends with said woman visiting a prisoner, telling him that ‘Stage 2’ is nearly complete. She just needs him to touch base with ‘the clairvoyant…’ for info on Stage 3.
The mystery builds! What does Centipede want with a stable Extremis (besides the fact it creates superhumans)? What is phase 3? What is the story behind Skye’s parents? And who is ‘the clairvoyant’?
Like with any good TV show, these layers should unravel slowly throughout the season. So, stay tuned, true believers!