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Old October 24 2013, 12:20 AM   #1126
Christopher
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Venardhi wrote: View Post
He had been given little incentive to learn to use it better. Surely SHIELD could have made a project of him and found a way to enhance his natural ability much like the Extremis did.
I'm with Mixer on this. SHIELD probably recognized that Chan's personality didn't lend itself to handling power well, and that it was safer for everyone to encourage him to restrain his power. Raina and her Centipede cohorts didn't care how much damage he did to himself or others; they were just using him.


Why was it necessary for May to inject him with the Extremis then? It was her double-dose that set him off.
He was already starting to burn up, but he could've killed Coulson or others before he died. May just accelerated the process, in order to incapacitate him so he couldn't do further harm.



He is a human who is both fireproof and able to create (and control) flame from his hands. Limited or not that isn't someone you let walk around unutilized in a world where Captain America, Hawkeye and Black Widow are considered superheroes.
Remember what Coulson said to Mike at the climax of the pilot. What makes those people heroes isn't their power, but their character, who they are inside. Just because Chan had a superpower, that doesn't mean he could've been a superhero. As we clearly saw here, offering him a heroic role and a power boost just went to his head and made him more dangerous.

Indeed, the show seems to be doing something rather subversive here. Between Mike and Chan, we've seen two instances where the fantasy of being a superhero has been a corrupting influence or a dangerous delusion. It led Mike to nearly kill his boss when he decided the man was a "villain," and here it fired up Chan's ego and ambition to dangerous degrees. This isn't surprising, given how most of Whedon's ouevre has been about questioning or deconstructing conventional ideas of good and evil.


Who says Extremis was even the reason he was able to perform at that level?
Umm, the script? There's nothing saying otherwise except your wishes, and wishing doesn't make it so.

How would they even know that his powers would be enhanced?
Why wouldn't they? It enhanced Mike's abilities, making him stronger, faster, quicker-healing, etc. And remember, the Centipede formula isn't just Extremis, but a mix of that, a gamma radiation source, and a knockoff of Erskine's supersoldier serum. It enhances normal abilities, so why wouldn't it enhance a paranormal one?

And heck, they didn't really care whether it did enhance his abilities or not. They just wanted to lure him in to harvest his platelets. If the injection hadn't boosted his powers, they would've still found an excuse to harvest his blood.


This is the most powerful naturally occurring (not engineered or the result of an experiment gone wrong) meta-human ability we have seen in the MCU.
Actually they did say something about him being near a fire at a nuclear power plant, so it's not an innate power.
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Old October 24 2013, 12:58 AM   #1127
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Unless the population of Fukushima is suddenly going to develop water powers in the MCU, that throwaway line really doesn't hold up. Radiation doesn't rewrite genetics, it may have triggered inactive genes, but being the root cause is completely off the reservation.

The simplistic cartoon logic of the science at play here is distracting to me, but clearly my problems with the background story and resolution aren't shared by everyone, that is fine. I'm happy you enjoyed it all more than I was able to.

Hopefully the next one is more satisfying.
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Old October 24 2013, 01:22 AM   #1128
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

You're seriously questioning the science of a Marvel superpower origin story? It's clearly a world where gamma radiation, cosmic rays, etc. cause superpowers. Radiation has always given superpowers in this universe. It's clearly just building on that folklore.
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Old October 24 2013, 01:35 AM   #1129
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Alidar Jarok wrote: View Post
You're seriously questioning the science of a Marvel superpower origin story? It's clearly a world where gamma radiation, cosmic rays, etc. cause superpowers. Radiation has always given superpowers in this universe. It's clearly just building on that folklore.
Heh, I was about to say almost the same thing.

Almost every Marvel hero gains his powers through a form of radiation, the line about (Basically) an accident at a power plant was true to type. I actually loved that throwaway line. It felt very Marvel.
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Old October 24 2013, 01:40 AM   #1130
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

I'd also guess it was done deliberately to make clear that he wasn't a mutant. People get powers in traditional Marvel fashion for others besides the X-Men.
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Old October 24 2013, 01:42 AM   #1131
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

The SHIELD Science Directorate has determined that cosmic rays are not a source of superhuman abilities.

We're FOX's lawyers, and we approve this message.
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Old October 24 2013, 01:54 AM   #1132
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Metahuman, humanplus, posthuman, or homosuperior?
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Old October 24 2013, 01:56 AM   #1133
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Alidar Jarok wrote: View Post
You're seriously questioning the science of a Marvel superpower origin story? It's clearly a world where gamma radiation, cosmic rays, etc. cause superpowers. Radiation has always given superpowers in this universe. It's clearly just building on that folklore.
The MCU is an opportunity to remove some of that cheese. This isn't the 50s and 60s and radiation isn't some mysterious magical force that can do everything and anything in fiction without question anymore. It is a lazy crutch to fall back on such an outdated trope.
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Old October 24 2013, 02:16 AM   #1134
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

That's right, we have nanotechnology to do that now.
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Old October 24 2013, 02:27 AM   #1135
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Alidar Jarok wrote: View Post
You're seriously questioning the science of a Marvel superpower origin story? It's clearly a world where gamma radiation, cosmic rays, etc. cause superpowers. Radiation has always given superpowers in this universe. It's clearly just building on that folklore.
Actually the MCU version of the Hulk got his powers from an attempt to recreate the Erskine supersoldier formula, though gamma irradiation was part of the process (presumably taking the place of Erskine's "vita-rays").

So maybe there was some other factor that Chan was exposed to along with the radiation. The episode was deliberately ambiguous about the source of his powers.
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Old October 24 2013, 03:18 AM   #1136
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

And I'm not convinced that "gamma radiation" in the MCU, or even in Marvel period is the same as "gamma radiation" in our universe. I think it's pretty much like the various "radiations of the week" the various Star Trek series would run into.
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Old October 24 2013, 03:43 AM   #1137
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

^Oh, that's a given. Marvel uses "gamma" as essentially a magic incantation doing whatever the plot requires, although usually something Hulk-related.
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Old October 24 2013, 03:51 AM   #1138
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Christopher wrote: View Post
^Oh, that's a given. Marvel uses "gamma" as essentially a magic incantation doing whatever the plot requires, although usually something Hulk-related.
Yeah, but it's easy to hear "Gamma radiation" and assume that it means, well, Gamma radiation, something that actually exists and not "Gamma radiation" as in, "Eh, stick a Greek-letter or a fancy-sounding word in front of "radiation" and we'll say it can do whatever we need it to do."
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Old October 24 2013, 04:15 AM   #1139
Alidar Jarok
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

Venardhi wrote: View Post
The MCU is an opportunity to remove some of that cheese.
And it appears that they chose not to exercise that opportunity. At least, to the point that davejames' complaint that they're focusing on X-Men style mutants is without merit.
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Old October 24 2013, 09:44 AM   #1140
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Re: Agents of SHIELD. Season 1 Discussion Thread

I'm happy they're not trying to remove the "cheese." The "cheese" is not only inherent to the source material, but it's part of the appeal of the genre. Whenever anybody tries to remove the "cheese" in favor "realism," they only succeed in mainstreaming the magic out of it. Give me creativity and imagination, not dull reality.
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