Season 4 of Agents of SHIELD has been the best of the series’s run especially with its “Agents of HYDRA” arc. It has been almost perfect from the writing to the performances. One fear, however, in a season this good is if they can stick the landing. Well, I’m happy to say that “World’s End” was able to do so (for the most part) in a action-packed episode with a series of twists, turns and a shock or two to boot. Now, go get yourself a nice slice of pie and lets look back at the end of season 4 with the return of a old buddy from the beginning of the season.
RETURN OF THE RIDER
As we saw in the last episode, Ghost Rider is back. Robbie Reyes get back behind the wheel of his car and makes a beeline straight for AIDA and the Darkhold book in her possession. When the Spirit of Vengeance arrives to where Aida and her robot goons are at, Robbie makes short ease of them. You’ll see that as a running theme of this episode, robots getting destroyed. The key part of this battle comes when Ghost Rider’s chain connects with Aida’s arm, giving her one nasty wound. I won’t lie and say I didn’t enjoy it a little. Aida teleports off however leaving Robbie alone.
This leads to a re-connection between Robbie and Daisy, as they still have that chemistry that was evident in the “Ghost Rider” arc of the first half of the season. I think under different circumstances, these two could be some kind of couple. But when you have a darkhold, inhuman-powered newly human maniac running around out there, even the slightest hint of a romantic connection has to wait.
Robbie gives the 411 on his return. Long story short, when Aida made herself human with that Darkhold power, it opened a portal to let Ghost Rider return to our mortal realm. It truly is all connected! Since Aida and the Rider are connected by the darkhold magic, it wants to destroy Aida in the worst way. So basically almost as much as Simmons does. More on that in a second, but first we have to go to a little meeting of international minds.
IT WAS A FRAME JOB!
So as the team is reconnecting with Robbie, they find out that one of the LMD’s the Rider took out is scheduled to be a big-wig meeting of the international minds. Of course this meeting is about the “threat” of SHIELD and our old chum General Talbot is a part of it. Don’t ask me why Talbot still has a job but since it’s America, he’ll probably be promoted to 6-star general in the future.
Well he would have been if not for the shocking one-two punch of The Superior showing up with the Darkhold book. That wasn’t so bad…..what was bad was the LMD Daisy that shoots Talbot right in the head! You think, Talbot’s dead right??? Not exactly, as the bullet only wounds him but it is enough to make everyone once again go against SHIELD as part of AIDA’s plan. The team arrives a little late but Daisy is able to take out The Superior and his other LMD buddy with a big assist by Ghost Rider. It was a beautiful action scene as once again Agents of SHIELD leads the way in stunts and action in the comic-book TV world. Aida disappears again but ends up leaving the Darkhold book behind.
Side note: While Aida’s plan is perfectly fine, I am tired of the “Get the world to distrust SHIELD” storyline. It’s been done countless times. This isn’t the CW, show. We don’t need to keep recycling the same things over and over again. Though at the end of this episode, we might not see the ramifications of this for quite a while…..
So with the book in their possession, Coulson tells the team that it’s time to fight back. It’s time to go back to the base. Phil is the man with the plan!
Earlier in the episode, we got a FitzSimmons scene where things were a little chilly especially with Jemma, as she pointblank asks Leo if he can kill Aida. We never get a answer as it’s interrupted, but I’m also glad we didn’t. Either answer to Jemma’s question is bad, I think. Say Yes and they worry that the cruel bastard that framework Fitz could come out here. Say No and Jemma questions how much Fitz still cares about the former robot.
Well, this all comes to a head back in the base as AIDA pops up while Fitz and Simmons are working on Coulson’s plan. Aida has gone full psycho,crazy super-villain now and captures Jemma in her clutches. This leads to one of the tensest scenes on Agents of SHIELD in some time, and that is saying something. As Fitz is begging and pleading for Aida to let Jemma free, Aida decides “Hey I’ll do the exact opposite and stab Jemma in the chest!” FUCK NOOOOOO!
The haunting part of the scene is Aida playing with Fitz as she digs the blade further into Jemma, as Fitz’s continues to plead for Jemma’s life. The moment alternates between making your stomach turn with worry and goosebumps on your arm at the how good Ian, Elizabeth and Mallory are in this scene. Exceptional work by all three in this last arc. Fitz’s continued pleas for humanity from Aida go to deaf ears as the unthinkable happens.
Aida electrocutes Jemma and shockingly kills her! (Sorry for the unintended pun)
I think we all need a moment to recover from this so lets go to the B-story of the finale– Yo-Yo’s adventure into the framework to rescue Mack.
We go to the framework world as Yo-Yo is still strapped to the gurney in a ravaged Hydra lab. It don’t look good, till Radcliffe arrives to the rescue. He explains that Aida must have pulled the plug and everything inside the framework is fading away into oblivion. That bit of information doesn’t budge Yo-Yo, as her goal is to get Mack back.
Dr. Radcliffe takes Elena to the base where it is pure panic, as people and things are fading out of existence. Mack, though, won’t budge as long as his little girl Hope is there. Even when later, the remaining SHIELD agents disappear off of the bus they are on, there is no budging Mack. So Mack, Hope, Elena and Radcliffe go to Mack’s house where the fear is striking Hope badly. It gets even worse when Radcliffe and Yo-Yo discuss how none of this is real right in front of the girl! Sure she may be a computer creation but she’s one with feelings.
“Daddy, I want to be real!”
That one line broke me as much as it did Mack, as after saying that Hope fades away leaving Mack with a empty hole in his heart and soul again. After that, do you blame him for not caring anymore? Yo-Yo still cares about Mack and she stays. We don’t see it often enough (Most because we don’t see them together a lot) but Yo-Yo/Mack’s relationship is a very underrated and beautiful relationship. Both make the other better and happier. We go back to the real world as Yo-Yo wakes up and the fear is real as Mack seems to be gone……well, until he suddenly wakes up.
I am so glad Mack survived but what shape is he in now? He just lost his daughter again. Does he take comfort in the time he got with her in the framework or does it just make him hurt even more? Only time will answer this one. Also we have a little problem called Aida to deal with.
DEALING WITH THE DEVIL
Aida finds Coulson working on the gateway to send Aida into the Darkhold world and we get some taunting. After all, what’s Coulson going to do against a dark powered, inhuman powered maniac? Well as we hear this , suddenly Aida is shot multiple times from behind by a very pissed-off and miraculous alive Jemma Simmons!!! YAY!
See, FitzSimmons was able to pull the old switcharoo on Aida and she just killed a lame LMD that no one will miss. The gunshots do nothing to slow down Aida but feel really good to Jemma. Now I have a couple complaints about this upcoming scene.
- I wish Jemma had been the one take down Aida. After all the shit that robot has put her through: Killing her in the framework, twisting the love of her life into a murderer, stealing the love of her life into her own boyfriend. How sweet it would have been to see Jemma give the final blow to defeat Aida? Pretty darn sweet.
Instead the plan is revealed as Aida turns right into the new Ghost Rider, one Phil Coulson. The Phil Rider grabs onto Aida and after a few teleportations takes her back to the base where we see the end of the former LMD. Burned alive in front of Fitz and Simmons. Now here’s where my second minor complaint comes in.
- It just felt too easy. Sorry, but I was expecting a more grandiose finale to Aida. Instead this just felt too quick to me. I mean, I didn’t hate it. (I hate that Simmons didn’t have any popcorn as she watched Aida burn.) It just felt a little flat for such a big-time villain of the season.
So, goodbye Mallory Jensen, and thank you for your exceptional performance this season on Agents of SHIELD. Loved her work on Galavant and on here she was even better.
Goodbye AIDA. I’m not going to miss you at all for all the crap you did to ruin my ship: FItzSimmons.
So the battle over, the Rider goes back to Robbie as he and Coulson discuss their moments with the spirit. Phil paid a price to take the demon as Robbie tells someone for the first time in along time “I don’t envy you.”
What price has Phil paid to take down Aida? My early guess is his soul because that’s what you usually bargain in these situations. The question is now – when will the team find out about the deal Coulson made? And how will they, especially May take it? After a little chain magic and a nod to Daisy, Ghost Rider and the Darkhold book disappear into a whole different dimension. Does this mean we have seen the last of Robbie Reyes? It feels like the answer is yes, but as with all things Agents of SHIELD…..you never know.
Also how will the team handle all that has happened now? Fitz wants to take the blame for everything, the LMDs, Aida. However, Daisy tells him that that way is not the one to go. She knows from experience that standing with your team, your friends, your family is the way to go. After all , how can we not talk family when family is all we got? So after all that , Phil suggest that it’s time to get something to eat as they haven’t eaten since……………I have no clue? It’s been days right? They had to have snacked on a protein bar at least, right?
Ah well, the team is all together again at a quaint little diner about to order some nice pie.
Some thoughts on what type of pie a few team members would eat
Fitz – SHEPHERD
Daisy – CHOCOLATE
But as they are about to order, the diner’s power goes off and the team is captured by what looks to be some government officials. Except they pull the old freezing them in place trick.
Our end tag to season 4 leads to Phil waking up in some sort of simple room. After a second of stretching, he opens the window to reveal asteroids and the team is in space.
THE TEAM IS IN SPACE. OH BOY.
So now the questions are : What are they doing in space? Is this SWORD (From the X-Men, Captain Marvel comics)? Will this have something to do with the new Inhumans series? Or are we going to meet the Nova Corps? Season 5 is going to be a lot of fun, I expect.
And now, a quick word on season 4. Going into the season I don’t know what my expectations were for the season. All I knew is that whatever they were, they were exceeded beyond my hopes and dreams. Not only did we get awesome performances in all 3 arcs (Ghost Rider, LMD, HYDRA) but we got great performances to mix with all the fantastic action. We got to see a few old friends one more time and Skyeward, Philinda and FitzSimmons fans were all given all the FEELS at times. So season 4 in the books, I can safely say it was the best one of the series.
Now let’s hope season 5 can top it!
- May and Phil again confront their “relationship” and what happened with LMD May. I think May now knows and she actually acknowledges that those feelings are somewhat hers too. So they agree that after the battle, they will open up a new bottle to mourn the old one. Except now in space, I suppose it will have to be alien booze….
- “I smell a lot of L.Ron Horsecrap”
- I have lost count of how many times this TV season I have seen Zach McGowan-played characters get killed. He is now TV’s Sean Bean.
- We have also seen the last of Dr. Radcliffe as he is last moment in the framework is drinking on the beach while thinking of lost love. He may have screwed up but I’ll miss the man.
- Also goodbye Framework Trip and Ward. I hope someone is writing some wonderful fan-fiction adventures about you guys as we speak.
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D is currently on hiatus.