The team heads to Colorado after a S.H.I.E.L.D. transport is attacked by an invisible electrostatic field, allowing an armed group to kidnap a Priority Red asset: Canadian physicist Franklin Hall (Ian Hart). Tracing the equipment used in the attack leads the team to Ian Quinn (David Conrad) who offers the scientist, an old friend and rival, a chance to work on his long theorized Gravitonium-powered gravity-shifting device which, as the hijack shows, is no longer quite so theoretical.
Heavily protected in Malta, safe from S.H.I.E.L.D. and international law, the team decides to send the untrained Skye (Chloe Bennet) in as their inside man against the objections of Grant Ward (Brett Dalton) who knows the hacker is not ready for what they team is asking of her, nor is he completely sure they can trust her loyalties. Despite initial appearances the team doesn’t have to worry about Skye, but their kidnapped scientist is another matter when they discover he planned his own abduction to finish the invention and destroy Quinn’s facility and the Gravitonium.
Given what we’ve already seen from the character, and the tease we got from the last epilogue, “The Asset” makes the best use of Skye’s questionable loyalties to throw-in the red herring of her betrayal for maximum effect. The results of the episode makes the hacker determined to take her training seriously as well as open up with her troubled past with Ward. Coulson (Clark Gregg) putting himself in danger (in an interesting gravity-bending fight/debate sequence) also forces Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen) out of her role as just the team’s pilot and agree to return to the team’s second full-combat field agent. The episode’s epilogue also suggests we haven’t seen the last of the super-villain formerly known as Franklin Hall.