Warning: This post contains spoilers for the season 3 finale of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. If you have not yet seen the finale, I advise you to stop reading and come back when you have.
Just a few days ago, the season 3 finale of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. aired and the final ten minutes raised plenty of questions for the future of the series. We recently learned that next season will be pushed back an hour and air at 10 p.m. EST, with the move giving the show a chance to get more mature and have a darker theme. The writers are in the early stages of constructing next season, but by ending with a six month jump forward, they clearly have certain stories in mind. While I am not one of the writers (nor do I want to be) or even remotely know what they have in store for next season, I’m going to act like I do know. Here are my four biggest questions heading into season 4.
What is the state of S.H.I.E.L.D.?
One of the biggest questions is the state of S.H.I.E.L.D. They had ties to the President and although they did end up saving the world from an Inhuman outbreak, things have definitely changed in the brief glimpse we got. For starters, Coulson is no longer the director of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the only other familiar face we see is Mack. Does this mean that Talbot has gone from Head of the A.T.C.U. to Director of S.H.I.E.L.D.? Is it possible that Nick Fury has taken back his organization? Or in a dream scenario, during his underground adventures, Cap and the Secret Avengers discover the truth of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Cap takes the job? That’s definitely unlikely, but Coulson and Mack have been delegated to field agents once again and have other people to answer too.
There is also the mystery of the other S.H.I.E.L.D. members we have come across. We will get to Daisy shortly, but there is no word of May, Yo-Yo, or Joey (who was surprisingly absent from the finale). Dr. Radcliffe quickly mentions that Fitz and Simmons are vacationing and seems to have become close with both, but is he a part of S.H.I.E.L.D. or have the lovely couple left to join him? Anyways, May could be a contender for the new director, but I’m assuming they are still trying to figure that out internally. Six months should be more than enough time for Yo-Yo to recover from her gunshot wound, and if Mack is still there, I would imagine she would stick around too. We will probably get bits and pieces of information that lead up to the real answer during the summer, but there is a good chance an outsider has taken over S.H.I.E.L.D., enforced stricter guidelines, and removed the Secret Warriors team for not complying with The Sokovia Accords.
I would also not be able to forgive myself I did not throw in a quick mention of Bobbi and Hunter. We know that Marvel’s Most Wanted has not been picked up, which means these characters are floating around somewhere on this planet. A new direction for S.H.I.E.L.D. could make it possible to reinstate them, and they do not even need a good reason personally. Just give me more of Adrianne Palicki please.
How has Daisy been affected?
This season, and especially the finale, was not easy on Daisy. However, the future for the character sure is interesting. First off, she seems to have gotten her superhero name from the newspapers, which hopefully means no more calling her Tremors and instead embracing the comic books and calling her Quake. She gets the name because she has left S.H.I.E.L.D., but appears to still be acting like a hero. Following Lincoln sacrificing himself to save her while still dealing with the absence that Hive left inside her, Daisy has definitely changed. She is more in control of her powers, but is she trying to save more people because she feels the guilt of Lincoln’s death and all she did while under Hive’s influence? It is also uncertain why and how she left S.H.I.E.L.D. I would think it is her decision, but is former director Coulson and S.H.I.E.L.D. trying to find her to lock her up or to bring her back within the organization? Only time will tell.
What happened to Blake and the Watchdogs?
During the middle of this season, the show introduced an opposing group to S.H.I.E.L.D. that was anti-Inhuman. The Watchdogs were responsible for destruction and mayhem, and gave Hive the warhead he desired. Run by former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Felix Blake (Titus Welliver), who appeared as a hologram for a single appearance, he and his organization mysterious disappeared. The only further connections were some of the members being used for Hive’s experiments, and later on when Coulson used the same hologram technology against Hive. Hopefully this was a set up for them to be a larger threat in season 4. With them hating Inhumans and S.H.I.E.L.D. formerly trying to help them, both agencies chasing down Daisy and other Inhumans could make for a compelling part of next season.
Who is AIDA?
At the very end of the finale, we go to Dr. Radcliffe’s office, where he immediately starts talking to his own personal A.I. This is not JARVIS, but instead what he calls AIDA. While a new A.I. is not that big of a deal, what Radcliffe does with it is. He has cracked an old S.H.I.E.L.D. experiment and is forming the first Life Model Decoy (LMD). He says AIDA will be the one to inhabit the LMD, and both AIDA and her LMD will provide plenty of interesting possibilities for the show. I should note that back in 1985 in Squadron Supreme #1, a program called AIDA (Artificial Intelligence Data Analyser) was introduced and worked on creating a new body for it’s creator. Something similar to this could take place, but LMDs mean literally anybody can come back. Could a good Grant Ward be born or a new Lincoln most likely without his powers? Anything is possible with LMDs. Also, since AIDA will seemingly be the first LMD, the theories that all the Koenig brothers were actually LMDs are probably not true, bringing even more mystery behind their nature.
Let us know what questions you are left with following the season 3 finale in the comments below!