Tonight is a monumental night for Marvel fans bringing the two-part Season 7 finale of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., “The End is At Hand” and “What We’re Fighting For”, bringing Marvel’s debut MCU television series to an epic close in the series finale! When we last left off, multiple S.H.I.E.L.D. bases across the globe were being destroyed by the Chronicoms while Nathaniel Malick and Kora reunite before the final battles of the entire series unfolded.
My overall thoughts on these two episodes is that while it may not have been the absolute best of this season, they set up about as amazing of an ending as I ever could have hoped for. I’ll get into how the entire team fares later on, but this finale was an absolute perfect tribute to the journey that started for fans of this show back on September 24, 2013. It was filled with MCU and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Easter Eggs, little memories from almost every single season of the show, and even though the time travel plot was sort of undone in the end, nearly every main character ended up in a great place for their future.
While this review will mostly focus on the finale, the highlight of “The End is At Hand” came at the very end with S.H.I.E.L.D. agents coming together to bring pieces of a device to the original base from the 1930’s and help set up the finale. With pieces of material from every decade, and even special appearances from past S.H.I.E.L.D. characters like Victoria Hand from Season 1, it set up an exciting task at hand for a clearly struggling Jemma Simmons. Even with her memories in shambles, she was still able to heroically do what needed to be done, and it set up one of the most exciting reveals of the season for the very end of the penultimate episode.
That big reveal of this week was finally getting a big, heavy dose of Iain De Castecker and finally finding out what Leo Fitz has been up to the entire season. It turns out that he was holding down the fort in the original timeline of the show while the rest of the team branched off into another reality to fight the Chronicoms, giving a network-television-style glimpse at what could be coming in the future regarding the MCU Multiverse. He even used the same plot device from Avengers: Endgame, the massive culmination of Marvel Studios’ Infinity Saga, by taking advantage of the Quantum Realm to nullify everything that happened in Season 7 and still save the day. In the end, it really WAS all connected.
Even though this is really my only complaint about the series finale, it still is a bit of a downer that almost everything the team went through meant nothing in the end. They were able to take things right back to the end of Season 6 at the temple battle and still save the entire team like nothing ever happened. However, even with this little easy route to safety, it did almost nothing to tamper down my feelings about the action and story behind this finale.
The villains of this season were all ended in very different fashions, with the S.H.I.E.L.D. team even turning Kora to their side thanks to her being so important to their success. John Garrett once again couldn’t catch a break, both after being betrayed by Malick and helping the heroes escape, unceremoniously being shot in the head and presumably killed while trying to rewrite a better future for himself. (Once again, very well done by James Paxton. It was fun having him continue his father’s legacy in this final run.)
Malick got exactly what he deserved in the end; his rage and need for anarchy were more prevalent than ever and he ended up paying the price for it. In one of the most epic battles of the season, and one of the most fun duels in the entire series, he and Daisy show off every last ounce of their powers against each other before Malick meets his end with Daisy’s selfless act, along with Sibyl and the entire Chronicom fleet. This also helped complete Kora’s turn to hero after the heart-to-heart she had with Daisy in Part 1, and she used her powers to save her sister even after spending most of the finale having them drained out of her.
As for our heroes, while the finale did it’s due diligence to end each character’s story in as meaningful of a way as possible, some of the deepest moments came with the show’s longest running tag-team of Leo Fitz and Jemma Simmons. With Simmons’ implant going haywire and throwing her memories completely out of whack, Fitz stepped in beautifully to help her slowly regain her footing until she was back to being Simmons again. This included even more brilliant acting by Elizabeth Henstridge, who has shined all season, and it gave us some peak moments of the ever-amazing Fitzsimmons.
Along with the reveal that Fitz had been in the original timeline keeping things steady was the moment that assuredly brought tears to most fans of this show (myself undoubtedly included): the revelation that Fitz and Simmons took their time on the Time Drive and HAD THEMSELVES A DAUGHTER! Their relationship came full circle in this episode, going all the way from them being best friends at the start of Season 1 to being married having a daughter together by the end of Season 7. This also helped tie the time travel shenanigans up pretty well by ensuring that Deke still lives when his time comes in the late 21st century.
The last ten minutes of the episode finished off the series with an absolutely perfect send-off, happily proving Enoch’s prediction wrong and making sure that the team will always keep in touch and keep their family as strong as ever. The “One Year Later” extended tag was an amazing get-together for all of the core team minus Deke, who bravely sacrificed himself by staying in the past to ensure the team could accomplish their mission. Something tells me he’s handling himself just fine as he enjoys the 80’s and the few decades following.
The Yo-Yo-Mack duo ends up as badass as expected, with Yo-Yo putting her powers to good use as part of a new STRIKE team and Mack serving as Director aboard a refurbished, reborn Helicarrier. Fitz and Simmons have seemingly retired from the S.H.I.E.L.D. life for now in order to spend some much needed off-time together, evolving into likely the best parents ever to young Alya. May has evolved into being even kinder and more giving than she has been in her history on this show by taking up a teaching position at the newly refurbished Coulson Academy, even taking on the time-displaced rock-forming Inhuman Flint (Coy Stewart) as her new apprentice.
Daisy has seemingly taken up a temporary residence on Zephyr THREE in space, alongside her sister Kora and her new man Daniel Sousa, and they all seem to have a bright future ahead of them with endless possibilities to explore off Earth. It also bears mentioning once again how amazing it was to have Enver Gjokaj as a guest star through nearly all of Season 7. Seeing how Sousa adapted to a new team and bigger challenges was such a fun journey to witness, and it’s so refreshing to see both him and Daisy as happy as they deserve to be.
Finally, LMD/Chronicom Phil Coulson is still in his reassessment phase as he figures out what in the world to do with his life. It’s never explicitly stated if he and May are together anymore, but he appears to be taking some time away from S.H.I.E.L.D. to travel the world and live a life that he so richly deserves. He even gets possibly the happiest ending of all as Mack builds him an all new version of his classic 1962 red Corvette, lovingly nicknamed Lola and complete with some of the coolest sci-fi looks and tech that have ever been showcased in this series. The last shot of the series even has the perfect tribute to the original Pilot episode, with Coulson and Lola flying off camera into an unknown new world, aviators and all.
4.8 HAPPY ENDINGS OUT OF 5
This series has had one of the craziest journeys of any comic book show in the modern day era over the past seven years. A series that included the fall of S.H.I.E.L.D. (multiple times), Inhumans, Ghost Rider, the Framework, Chronicoms, the destruction of Earth, time travel and so much more, and through it all, the heart of the entire show was the little team at S.H.I.E.L.D. that became a family.
To the entire core cast, series regulars, guest stars, extras and production crew, the fans thank you for seven incredible years. This was Marvel Studios first foray into network television, and it broke down boundaries for everything that’s on its way in the future. The end of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has finally come after 136 episodes, all of which will live on in all of our memories.
- This finale was filled with some incredible Easter Eggs and connections to nearly every old season, plus tie-ins with the greater MCU. One example of this was the 1-3-6 code for Coulson’s new keys, celebrating 136 episodes of the show from 2013 to 2020.
- Again, the series finale and the series pilot having the same exact ending was pure brilliance. An amazing tribute to fans who have stuck with the show since the beginning.
- The performances in these final episodes by everybody in the main cast were incredible, led spectacularly by the man who started it all: Clark Gregg. His portrayal of Phil Coulson over the last 12 years has been one of the highlights of the MCU, and fans will miss him dearly if he doesn’t find a way to return once again. Of course, anything is possible.
- This episode’s cameos featuring stars from past seasons were so special, specifically those for Flint, Piper (Briana Venskus), Davis (Maximillian Osinski), and Enoch (Joel Stoffer).
- Thanks for spending all season with us at MCU Exchange, thank you to the team behind Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. for everything they’ve given us over the past seven years, and we can’t wait to do this again for the new upcoming min-series premiering on Disney Plus soon!