Warning: This post contains spoilers for episode 15, “Paradise Lost,” of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. If you are not caught up on the series, I suggest you stop reading now.
Last night’s episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was packed full of story and action, including a single take sequence. The combination of the team discovering “Ward” is back, Lash returning, Daisy seeing the future, and more gave the show plenty to work with. Over the final seven episodes of the season, Executive Producers Jed Wheedon and Maurissa Tancharoen will have their hands full.
The couple sat down with The Hollywood Reporter to discuss what lies ahead for their series and the characters. One of the biggest things that will happen is the team continuing to investigate who or what Ward has become. While we the viewers already know the answer to this, it’ll have a big impact on the rest of the characters.
Whedon: This is going to be the most shocking for Coulson because he did something dark but for a good reason, and now he knows he didn’t achieve much. (Laughs.) Maybe he even did something or created something worse with that act. I think that Coulson’s real feelings about Ward will come to the surface. For everybody else, obviously it’s going to be a very large threat. Simmons lived on that planet and knows a little bit of how evil this thing is and what it’s capable of. There’s a lot of questions and they all have no idea how to handle it.
Tancharoen: Up until this point, Coulson has been coping with what he did to Ward back on Maveth by just pushing forward, not really thinking about it. Now, basically Ward’s face filled the screen in his office and he literally came face-to-face with the person that he killed. And he’s no longer a person, so what is he is still a question. We’ve been alluding to the fact that he’s the ultimate symbol of evil, so that’s not good. (Laughs.) He’s basically Ward times a million.
It has not been clearly stated how much the rest of the team outside of Fitz and Coulson know what exactly Coulson did. However, they may know more than we have been led to believe.
Whedon: I think they know, but maybe they don’t know the details.
Tancharoen: The only one who knows it first hand is Fitz.
Whedon: They share the brutality of the act, all the details. We will be dealing with that a little bit.
During the encounter with Hive, Daisy is on a mission to save fellow Inhuman Charles. When he ends up saving her, she sees a glimpse of the future familiar to us. She sees the flashforward scene that was shown at the beginning of the mid-season premiere, and most likely will not handle it too well.
Whedon: We’ll see that she’s rattled by it. Not only did she see that, but it came to her at a moment when it was confirmed for her that she cannot change the outcome of these visions and the future is the future. We’ll see how she deals with that and whether or not she feels like she should share it or if she should try to take it on.
This vision is not one that will end well for whoever is in the quinjet, and while we do not know who that is, it is possible that Daisy does. She felt that she could change the outcome of the previous vision, but that was proven untrue as well. The future may be set in stone as of right now, but also maybe not.
Tancharoen: There is still that question. We’ve been building this theory behind the Inhumans that each one of them serves a purpose. Lincoln says that they’re all by design and each one of them fills a purpose. They have their own destiny. In this episode, Daisy believes her destiny is to alter this future but it’s right on the heels of us building this arc with Daisy where she has this hubris. She has this sense of Inhuman pride. The fact that she thinks she can stop the future is an example of that pride. When we build something up in a character, we like to take it away, and this is an example of that. Whether or not this is also an indication of what happens later, that is still a question of if she can stop this new vision.
Whedon: I think we’re pretty definitively saying that right now, you can’t change it. So it’s a question of if something changes that allows her to. I think that she’s operating under the notion that she cannot.
Since we see no more than the shoulder of whoever is in the quinjet, as well as a cross necklace similar to Yo-Yo’s, there is no clear indication who is up in space and presumably dying. Just when you think you’ve narrowed down your list of candidates to possible S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, they throw us for a loop saying it could be anyone.
Whedon: Well, is it even a SHIELD agent or did they just borrow someone’s jacket? (Laughs.) We can reveal nothing.
We also saw the final transformation Andrew had to Lash, which means no more Blair Underwood (sheds tear) but a lot more of big purple Inhuman hunter. Before his transformation, he is injected with a version of the prototype serum that prevents Terrigenesis from working. As far as we should be concerned however, this is the end of Andrew.
Whedon: I think so. It’s a goodbye between Andrew and May, and it’s a powerful one. They were both so wonderful in those scenes. Obviously, this is the Marvel universe, so who knows what will happen?
Tancharoen: There’s always the possibility of the serum working.
This transformation was sad for plenty of viewers, but the person that this will effect the toughest is undoubtedly May. Her close but also distant relationship with Andrew gave them plenty of happy and sad moments. When we return to see how May reacts to losing him forever, it will not be easy.
Tancharoen: This might be the ultimate pain for her. Her one and only source of love and happiness is now gone forever and in the form of a monster. There will be an emotional toll.
Whedon: And she wasn’t ready to forgive him. She already lost him when it was revealed that he was Lash. So to then hear him retract some of his words sort of brought up that pain again.
Before Andrew turns for the final time, he reveals that he thinks that Lash has a plan and a cause that he is fighting for. Lash is now in the captivity of S.H.I.E.L.D. for the foreseeable future, and the reasoning behind that is quite simple.
Whedon: Right now we have him because who else are we going to give him to? (Laughs.) But he does say that he thinks that Lash is fighting for a cause that he doesn’t understand yet, just as Ward is revealed to our team. So maybe those two things are tied together in some way.
As more and more Inhumans pop up, their powers will continue to be differentiated and be made for a purpose as Lincoln puts it. There have been plenty of philosophical debates about the good or bad that they do, but those talks are only just beginning.
Whedon: It’s an interesting aspect of the Inhumans. In the comics, these things are made, they’re not random. There’s a lack of something that needs filling and an Inhuman will be created that fills that niche. It’s an interesting concept we like playing with, and that plays into the idea of fate, which with our future visions, we’re hitting pretty hard. We like the idea of people who have been lost in their life, looking for an answer, actually having a direct purpose and trying to find what that is.
The episode ends with Malick being described as being scared like never before, but we were not sure if it was because of Hive or possibly what Charles showed him. The EP’s say it’s the latter, but what he saw remains a mystery.
Tancharoen: He’s glimpsed the future.
Whedon: The Inhuman touched him, so he saw something.
Tancharoen: It’s scared him to the core.
Be sure to tune in to the next episode to find out some of the answers to these stories. Before then, tell us what you want to see from the show in the comments below!
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will air on Tuesday at 9 p.m. EST on ABC.