Agents of SHIELD Season 7 Episode 3: Alien Commies from the Future! Recap

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There are 4 lights.

Agents of SHIELD visits 1950s era Area 51 in episode 3 and this time, they are the alien invaders. In addition to the Chronicoms, the other alien invaders who want to use a failed SHIELD science project to take over the world. Obviously.

To infiltrate the base, Jemma impersonates Peggy Carter while Coulson impersonates a second agent who’s been abducted by alien invaders the SHIELD agents. It all goes great until Peggy’s old partner, Daniel Sousa (Enver Gjokaj), shows up to supervise the latest experiment.

Recap

It’s time to go back to the future from the past! But we’re not ready to go back to the present yet. First, the Chronicoms make a stop in Groom Lake Nevada, 1955, home of alien conspiracy theory ground zero, Area 51. Zephyr 1 is hot on the Chronicoms trail, so they pop into the Nevada sky soon after, startling a couple of teens who are out stargazing in the desert.

The agents quickly take stock, remembering that Enoch didn’t make it onto the ship and figuring out that they’re still 65 years from home. Coulson reasons that it’s better to be in flight and cloaked when they jump.

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Agents of SHIELD Season 7 Episode 1: The New Deal Recap

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Ok kids, it’s time to head back to the 1930s for the final season of Agents of SHIELD, a show which has traveled the world, moved through space and time, explored how far the human mind and body can be pushed and invented or transformed almost every sort of scifi tech imaginable. This season, they play in what’s probably the only sandbox they’ve left unexplored, the past, specifically SHIELD’s past, which also happens to be the MCU and Avengers’ past as well.

This season begins a few seconds before last season ended, in order to remind viewers of the shocking changes that Jemma Simmons introduced Mack and Daisy to in the final moments of season 6. The Chronicom subplot which played second fiddle to the Sarge/Izel/Shrike war in season 6 now moves to the forefront, having turned into a full blown time war. The Chronicoms hope to wipe out SHIELD so that they can then conquer Earth and turn it into their new homeworld, Chronyca 3.

SHIELD is a formidable adversary in the 21st century, so the Chronicoms decide it would be easier to beat them earlier in SHIELD’s history. The aliens have (probably) used the mindscans they made of Jemma and Fitz in season 6 to develop time travel, which they now use to go to significant points in the 20th century in order to change SHIELD’s history. If episode 1 is any indication, the Chronicoms have dug deep in their examination of history so their targets aren’t necessarily obvious ones, but the connections to old friends sure are fun.

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Agents of Shield Season 6 Episode 3: Fear and Loathing on the Planet of Kitson Recap

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Agents of SHIELD Goes Cyberpunk

In a change of pace, this of episode Agents of SHIELD gives everyone a break from routine and goes full on space cyberpunk neo-noir, complete with robots, neon, hallucinations, breaking glass, existential desperation and the chief investigator’s voiceover narration. As befits a cyberpunk dystopia, irony and gallows humor abound. Because this is Agents of SHIELD and not Blade Runner or Altered Carbon, the result is both deadly serious and tongue in cheek.

Thematically, the episode revolves around friendships and Fitz and Simmons’ deep need to be reunited. The friendship pairings of Fitz and Enoch, and Jemma and Daisy, are closely examined in ways that are overdue. Piper and Davis also get a chance to shine both as individuals and to show their affection for each other as partners, despite their recent grumbles. There’s a glancing nod toward Jaco and Sarge, a fascinating pairing when you consider that Coulson was always drawn to talented outcasts, especially powered people.

Calling it now: Sarge/Fake Coulson is a Chronicom hunter. In episode 1, Benson said that Tinker was cybernetic. Sarge has traveled extensively through time and space and he and his team are clearly hunting for specific targets. This episode went from showing a Chromicon hunter capturing Fitz to Sarge setting off a targeting device in Earth’s sky. Otherwise, Earth wasn’t shown in this episode. That’s a pretty huge hint.

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Agents of SHIELD Season 6 Episode 1: Missing Pieces Recap

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Welcome back, fellow agents! After a year long absence and the loss of Director Coulson, SHIELD has reinvented itself again. This time, they are officially headquartered in the Lighthouse, the scene of much of the action in season 5. Mack has become Director Mackenzie, standing strong and steady as he watches over operations, with Coulson’s insights, projected from Fury’s cube, guiding him.

May and Yo-Yo are at the lighthouse with Mack, along with numerous new agents. It’s been a year in SHIELD’s timeline, as well, and in that time Melinda has buried Coulson and recruited talent, mainly of the muscle/field agent variety. Two in particular stand out: Keller, who has a chiseled jawline, a flirtation with Yo-Yo and a dumb idea about their current case that proves true; and Fox, who is his nerdy sidekick and possibly a single episode red shirt.

The current case is a series of anomalies reality warps distortions [name to be determined later] which have yet to be explained. When one of these events occurs, aliens arrive on Earth through a breach. By the end of the episode, their leader arrives, a character with a very familiar face.

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Agents of Shield Season 5 Episode 20: The One Who Will Save Us All Recap

Welp, tonight we learned that Graviton is on the loose and out of his mind in space, the Confederacy is aware of Infinity War and used the T word multiple times, and Kasius senior is definitely smarter than either of the Kasius juniors. In other words, we’re all gonna die, the only questions are when, and whether it will be Daisy, Graviton, or Thanos who does the honors.

Unless someone breaks the time loop or gets their hands on one of those slippery infinity stones. Tonight Fitz practically quoted Spock’s line from Wrath of Khan about needing to sacrifice a few (or one) because the needs of the many are greater. The decision about who the team is willing to lose, or who’ll choose to sacrifice themselves, is coming down to the wire, and bad decisions continue to tear the team apart.

Talbot begins his reign as Graviton by flying himself and Coulson into space on a piece of the Lighthouse floor. Points for style and resourcefulness, Glenn. And for teaching the kids to recycle.

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Agents of SHIELD Season 5 Episode 17: The Honeymoon Recap

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This week, the Invincible Three learn that invincibility, like magic, comes with a price, as the prophecy/time loop plays out all over again. Ruby’s dreams start coming true along the way, bringing her closer to becoming the Destroyer of Worlds. Deke confesses his feelings for Daisy, which doesn’t bode well for his long term survival, if history is anything to go by. But, hey, Ghost Rider was technically dead before he met Daisy, so he’s just banished to an alternate dimension instead. Maybe the guy from the future will get a creative send off as well.

It’s an action packed episode, with a few laughs, a few revelations and some heartbreak thrown in for good measure. With only five episodes left in the season, and possibly the series, we’re racing toward the big finish. Every episode feels like it’s part of the set up for whatever is coming in the grand finale.

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Agents of SHIELD Season 5 Episode 16: Inside Voices Recap

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This week Agents of SHIELD features two daring prison breaks by two death-defying groups of people who are being treated unfairly by their captors. The captors themselves feel that their prisoners betrayed them and their trust, and that the prisoners aren’t listening to reason, so they feel justified in containing the prisoners indefinitely, while they attend to other matters.

The prisoners also feel like they aren’t being listened to. They seek out unlikely allies and use their wits, skill and reckless bravado to pull off their escapes. Someone almost dies in each escape. Meanwhile, the leaders and seconds in command are distracted with their own plots and plans, so they underestimate their prisoners need to escape and deal with issues. The leaders don’t realize what’s happening until it’s too late to prevent the escapes.

Hale and Daisy are mirrored as soft-spoken leaders who fail to pay attention to what’s happening within their teams, and the HYDRA and SHIELD gangs both rebel as a result. Neither leader has either the history as team leader or the watchful muscle to back her up in order to be able to expect absolute loyalty from her best people. As a result, they lose the control they’re holding so tightly.

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Agents of SHIELD Season 5 Episode 15: Rise and Shine Recap

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Hale HYDRA! Hail the squid-bellied Destroyer of Worlds! Hail the Calamari Mata Hari, and the return of that silver-tongued devil himself, (former) General Talbot!

This week, we get a HYDRA history lesson and a nostalgic visit with some old friends. (RIP, Jasper Sitwell. I will always believe that someone saved you after the Winter Soldier crossed you off in the most spectacular of his on-camera assassinations.) We also discover just how deeply the misogyny ran in HYDRA.

After the Hydra background reveal, Hale takes Coulson on a tour of HYDRA and its goals as it stands today. The two leaders have a surprising amount in common, until Coulson slips and tries to give Hale orders based on his experiences in the future. Hale thinks that he’s just another male authority figure deciding that his gender makes him smarter than her, and shuts down in anger. Did they just bring us one step closer to the end of the world?

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Agents of SHIELD Season 5 Episode 14: The Devil Complex Recap

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This week’s episode confronts levels and layers of fear and loathing, and the ongoing question of when the solution becomes worse than the problem. How far is too far? At what point would it be better to die with your integrity or identity intact, rather than make a deal with the devil that potentially wipes out everything you thought you were or the good you were trying to accomplish?

These questions have been a core part of the show from the beginning, both politically, with the revelation that HYDRA and SHIELD had been interwoven since the beginning, and scientifically, as the question of the appropriateness of the use of the TAHITI protocol to revive Coulson has been reflected on by many characters through all five seasons.

The question of Fitz’ and Simmons’ genius, and when they need to rein it in for the good of the world, rather than following the science to its logical extreme, has also been with the show since the beginning, and explored in a new way each season. Season 4 seemed like it should be the peak of that issue, with Fitz helping Radcliffe create murderous LMDs and perpetrating genocide and mass torture on inhumans inside the Framework as his alter ego The Doctor.

Instead, we come back around to it again this week, in an even more chilling scenario, as Fitz needs to follow the science in order to save the world, but comes close to losing his own humanity while doing so. Cooperation with HYDRA is also on the table again, this time with SHIELD as a willing participant, with the goal of saving the world from a ruthless invading enemy. And, with the appearance of a Kree in the tag, the ethics and science of saving Coulson’s life using TAHITI or another advanced method, with or without his consent, are an issue once again.

This time, Coulson’s made his feelings on the subject very clear to everyone close to him, but he and everyone around him seem to be operating based on fear as much as on logic and reason. Daisy’s powers are also an important piece of the puzzle, with the science vs fear conflict driving her story as well. Fear anomalies continue to arise, and Hale continues to send surprises the team’s way. The situation is building in emotion and suspense and the team has 1/3 of the season left, about the length of the final pod in season 4, to prevent multiple catastrophes.

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Agents of SHIELD Season 5 Episode 13: Principia Recap

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This week, SHIELD goes back to its roots as a spy organization, and does some legwork that the Black Widow would be proud of. It’s a quieter, more light-hearted episode after last week’s emotional roller coaster ride, but family and loss are still themes. Deke figures out who his grandparents are and remembers his beloved mom, while Mack reaffirms that he’s not going to think of Elena as a robot just because she has robot arms. In the run up to Infinity War and Thanos, the show also brings up familial abuse, both as physical abuse and as the abuse of power. Hale becomes a stand-in for Thanos, and her team, especially Ruby, become alternates for Thanos’ children.

And Werner von Strucker is back! He’s still institutionalized, but out of his Ward-induced vegetative state and being threatened with heavy doping via Thorazine. He’s also using his favored alias of Alex Braun, but his therapist seems to know his full history and identity anyway.

His therapist wants Werner to show motivation toward making progress in therapy by revealing as much information about his past as possible, so that Werner can avoid the thorazine. Werner, however, has developed powers after being trapped in a particular memory in the memory recall machine while in a persistent vegetative state, then being shocked out of the memory loop by Lincoln Campbell zapping Werner with inhuman electrokinetic powers.

Now Werner remembers everything that’s ever happened to him, and every detail of his surroundings, no matter how small. He also seems to have enhanced senses, though I’m not sure Werner realizes that yet (or the writers 😉). He read the small type on an envelope in the trash from across the room, and heard the other side of a phone conversation through a wall. That’s not normal hearing or vision, and may be part of why he’s so out of control. Both hypersensitivity and psychic powers have a long tradition of driving people mad until they get a handle on their powers.

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