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The Well

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"The Well" is the eighth episode of the ABC/Marvel series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. It premiered on November 19, 2013.


In London, the agents clean up after the destruction that occurred in Thor: The Dark World. Simmons ignores a call from her parents saying she doesn't want to tell them about what has been happening because she is still not sure herself. Grant takes extreme precautions to decontaminate everything.

A couple go hiking on a nature reserve in Norway and, after cutting down a tree, they retrieve a piece of a metallic staff from within it. When to rangers of the nature reserve check out what is happening, the woman has already held it and fights them off in a rage.

Grant comforts Simmons with her new-found fear of heights to climb up the tree to investigate. From the indentation, Simmons discovers that the metal is alien and finds an indentation. Fitz analyzes the data to find out that it is an Asgardian staff. Skye alerts Coulson of a news report of violent attacks led by the couple. The demonstrators set a fire spelling out "We are gods."

Using data, they find out that there are two other pieces to the staff. Coulson informs them that they must keep the other pieces and will consult with Elliott Randolph, the lead expert in Norse mythology.

Coulson presents the 3D model of the staff. The professor identifies it as a Berserker staff belonging to a fierce Asgardian warrior. This staff would put its wielder into a rage. Continuing the story, he says this warrior was a peaceful one who stayed on earth and hid the three staff pieces. He repeats poetry of their whereabouts. They find evidence leading them to Seville, Spain. Grant and Skye take to the catacombs to search for the piece. After a reading on the spectrograph, Fitz directs Ward to the moving target, who is revealed to be Professor Randolph. Ward grabs for the staff, but, when his hand grasps it, he has a flashback of someone sinking in a well. He then passes out

Back on the surface, Randolph sneaks by the couple with their wannabe god friends. They overturn his car and steal the piece. Coulson is not happy to find the teacher without the part of the staff.

Simmons gives Grant a full examination to find the cause of the loss of consciousness. Randolph tells Coulson that he only hunted down the staff piece so he could study it. Watching the feed of Randolph in the interrogation room, his blood pressure and adrenaline rush. Skye attempts to ask him about the memory he relived. However, Grant becomes very angry at Fitz, Simmons, and Skye which leads Jemma to believe that his body chemistry is causing him to be irrationally angry.

Grant takes out his extreme anger on a punching bag, the whole time he has flashbacks of the boy in the well. When May confronts him, she is almost hit by him.

In their hideout, the staff wielders have many other revolutionaries touch the staff and they too become raging and violent.

Grant voices his concerns about his state to Coulson. He says he can't be distracted by his worst childhood memory of the first time he felt hate. Coulson says "By telling me this, I feel I can trust you." Coulson tells Ward to release some of his built-up rage on Randolph. When the professor still maintains that he does not know anything, Grant draws a knife and stabs at Randolph, who blocks it with his hand and bends it easily. Coulson enters, saying he is glad he was right about Elliott Randolph being an Asgardian himself or it might have ended badly.

Coulson confronts Randolph about being the warrior who stayed. May, under Coulson's orders, locks Grant, Coulson, and Randolph into the interrogation room. Trying to get him to tell of the third piece's location, they make him talk. He reveals that the staff "shines a light in your dark places." Coulson threatens to bring the Asgardian's identity to light if he will not divulge the location. He tells them it is in an Irish monastery.

Skye questions if Grant is fit to go out on the mission in his current state. Coulson allows it because Ward is aware of the problem. When he goes to retrieve the final piece one of the revolutionists has gotten it first and stabs Randolph through the chest. Ward pulls the final piece from the Asgardian's chest and attacks his opponent.

Ward uses his superhuman strength to fight the man. Fitz-Simmons has no idea what to do to save the alien, but Coulson plunges his hand in to try to keep him alive. He believes that, since Asgardians regenerate faster than humans, he can heal Randolph if he can keep his heart going long enough. Skye tries to calm Grant down but he tells her to stay away. As he picks up another staff piece, his flashbacks become more vivid. More of the revolutionists appear and he fights them all off.

The full flashback is revealed. Grant wants to help a boy thrown into a well by a bully. The bully threatens to throw Grant in next for helping the forlorn boy. He drops him a rope but is too late as the boy drowns.

Tired, Grant puts the staffs down as the leaders of the revolution enters. May wields the two pieces of the staff and fights the female leader until she knocks the third piece to the floor. She connects the three pieces and deals the final blow to the revolutionist. She then sets the staff down, showing no signs of change. Randolph's body regenerates fast enough to save him.

Simmons finally answers her father's phone call. Grant is curious to how May was able to wield all three pieces to which she replies that she sees it everyday. Coulson contemplates holding the staff to see his memories from Tahiti but Randolph says it will not be the best idea. Randolph also says that he plans to relocate as long as Coulson visits.

Ward and May are forced to stay in a hotel to recuperate. He apologizes to Skye for his rage but she easily forgives him. She assures him that she will always be there if he wants to talk. He goes upstairs and instead of entering his own room, he goes into May's room who left the door open for him to enter.

On a Tahitian beach, Coulson wakes up in the middle of a massage. The masseuse says he is relaxed and says Tahiti is "a magical place." Coulson comes to in his bed on the Bus with a startle and in sweat.

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Season One: "Pilot" | "0-8-4" | "The Asset" | "Eye Spy" | "Girl in the Flower Dress" | "FZZT" | "The Hub" | "The Well" | "Repairs" | "The Bridge" | "The Magical Place" | "Seeds" | "T.R.A.C.K.S." | "T.A.H.I.T.I." | "Yes Men" | "End of the Beginning" | "Turn, Turn, Turn" | "Providence" | "The Only Light in the Darkness" | "Nothing Personal" | "Ragtag" | "Beginning of the End"
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