Warning: This story contains major spoilers from this week’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. scored a new team member during Tuesday’s episode—but she almost came at a steep price.
Determined to get the obelisk back from Skye’s father (Kyle MacLachlan), Raina (Ruth Negga) attempted to blackmail Coulson (Clark Gregg). Unless he handed over Skye (Chloe Bennet), she’d send an email ousting Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) as a S.H.I.E.L.D. mole within Hydra. Coulson called her bluff because he had a backup plan: The very Hydra security agent tasked with finding the mole was actually another S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, Bobbi Morse (Adrianne Palicki), otherwise known as Mockingbird. Unlike the comics, in which Mockingbird was the wife of Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), this version is the ex-wife of newcomer Lance Hunter (Nick Blood). What’s in store for the newest member of S.H.I.E.L.D.? EW tracked down Palicki to find out.
How did you end up on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.?
They approached me and were interested in me for the role. Of course, I’m a huge comic book fan and have been forever. My brother’s a comic book writer. Playing an action hero is always exciting, but it was scary, because I was like, “I will never be able to play another Marvel character if I go forward in this role.” There was a lot of questions and a lot of weighing the options. The showrunners were very convincing. I’m glad that we all came together and I got to be this character.
Is there a possibility you could play Bobbi Morse in one of the Marvel films?
Absolutely. That’s the nice thing. It’s the first Marvel show that’s been on television and the crossovers have happened multiple times. I hope there is that potential for the character. Anything is possible in that world, which is wonderful.
Did you know right away that she wasn’t really a member of Hydra?
They explained to me what they were going to do in the first episode, which also worked for the dark hair situation. We used it to our advantage. I was so excited to see the arc. They explained to me a little bit of what’s down the line. It’s an exciting character.
We only got a brief glimpse into what kind of person Bobbi Morse is outside of being undercover at Hydra. What can you tell us about her?
Bobbi uses her sexuality and her confidence to get whatever it is she wants. She’s also very able to adapt to situations very, very quickly, which is part of her power in manipulation. At the end of the day, she’s a really cool, funny, sweet character. She’s just a badass, ultimately.
There are a lot of badass women on Coulson’s team right now. How does she get along with these other women?
She gets along wonderfully with them. I got to work with Elizabeth pretty much the entire first episode I was in, and she’s one of my favorite people. I have to give these writers and producers so much credit, because in a world where it’s scarce to see female characters like this, they’ve brought in multiple strong female characters in one setting. It’s such an awesome thing for young women everywhere. You have every level: The one that kicks ass, the one that’s the brains. They’re all strong in different ways.
Did you have to go through fight training for this?
Yeah, I had to definitely do a bit of training with the sticks. I’ve had martial arts training now and fight training, but bringing in a weapon is very different, especially since I’m used to using guns now. It’s been fun. It’s part of the excitement. I actually really like doing the stunts and learning new techniques and things of that nature. That’s part of the excitement of the character as well.
She seemed to have a similar technique to Black Widow. Were you inspired by Scarlett Johansson’s style?
That’s the thing that’s very similar about the two characters: They come from a martial arts background. They’re not necessarily superheroes, but they’re a part of the Avengers team. In that sense, they’re very similar, strong females. I love her as Natasha, a.k.a. Black Widow. There’s definitely a similarity between the two characters.
Mockingbird’s cover was blown, and she was asked to join the team. What role will she play moving forward, and how long will you be sticking around on the show?
That is up in the air still. She is part of the S.H.I.E.L.D. team. In episode 206, the world turns on S.H.I.E.L.D. because Hydra poses as them and attacks the U.N. All those story lines are still going; she’s just now a part of that world.
Bobbi used to be married to Lance. What is their relationship like moving forward?
There’s going to be a fun dynamic. A little bit like a Mr. and Mrs. Smith-type thing happening. It adds a little bit of levity and comedy to some very intense situations down the line. It’s fun. Getting to play with Nick is just so entertaining. It adds a little bit of a different dynamic to the show.
She also seemed to have some chemistry with Tripp (B.J. Britt). Is there something going on there?
I think anything is possible with the past. It’s like that moment she has with Mack (Henry Simmons). They used to work together. They’re really old friends. What it is more than anything is to show she’s had a relationship with these people for a very long time.
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.