Spoilers, Spoilers, Spoilers1 of 12SPOILER WARNING!
Seriously, massive spoilers on the way here for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 2, episode 10 - there will be spoilers throughout this piece. DO NOT READ until you’ve watched the episode. It’s worth experiencing for yourself.
Ready? Spoilers from here on out.
Well, the actors and EPs and basically everyone involved with this show promised the season 2 Fall finale would be a doozy, a game-changer, a “nothing is ever the same” kind of moment, and they were definitely not speaking with hyperbole. We got a lot of answers to tide us over until March (more on that in a bit), as well as plenty of new questions to stew over.
Okay, seriously, SPOILERS.
Yes, Skye’s real name is Daisy. Her father’s name is Cal - and those two names mean a lot to Marvel Comics fans, especially those who’ve paid attention for the last decade or so. While the words “Inhuman” and “Terrigen” were not uttered, there can now be no doubt that is what we’re dealing with here, slightly altering Daisy’s comic book origin and making her way more important to the Marvel Universe. The Inhumans have a feature film coming November 2, 2018, but they became part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe on December 9, 2014.
This could be part of the larger tie-in to Avengers: Age of Ultron in May, too - it’s been confirmed that the show will tie-in somehow to the blockbuster feature, and many have speculated that Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver in this world will be Inhumans.
But that’s enough for an intro - it’s time now to get into the major moments, solved mysteries, and the all-new, all-different questions presented by the most Marvel Cinematic Universe-connected episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. since Captain America: the Winter Soldier premiered.
Meet Daisy "Quake" Johnson and Mister Hyde2 of 12We have full profiles for you of these two characters as they appear in Marvel Comics over here, but let’s talk about how they relate to the show.
The woman we’ve known as Skye is called by her real name by her father, who says she’s Daisy. That’s after introducing himself as Cal.
So far so good - that falls right in line with a pervasive fan theory. Calvin Zabo, Mister Hyde, who has a daughter named Daisy Johnson. Daisy is also known by her codename, Quake.
On the show, Daisy is an inhuman - a special subset of humanity whose genetics were altered by the Kree. Her mother was one, too, with the fairly innocuous unlocked ability of long life. Inhumans need to be exposed to something called Terrigen Mists in order to have their powers activate (more on that in a minute) which is what happened at the end of the episode.
Cal, daddy dearest, meanwhile, goes by the alterego Mister Hyde on the comic book page. His powers were not natural - they were created through a formula in a lab, giving him enhance speed and strength, especially when he gets a little hot under the collar, something we saw demonstrated in earlier episodes. Cal gets away, so we will probably see him more in the future.
Meanwhile, Daisy (that’s going to take some getting used to!) had her powers activated, and it sure looks like they fall in line with the comics, with seismic abilities that brought the house down (sorry, couldn’t escape without one pun).
The Body Count3 of 12Fare thee well, Trip. And we were just getting to know you.
Yes, poor Agent Antoine Triplett bit the big one tonight, after being impaled by a fragment of the Diviner, which shattered after releasing the crystal and the mist into the chamber in the hidden city. The shard of alien metal didn’t kill him with a simple stab wound, though, it turned him into the ashy stone, as it had many times before to other regular humans. If there was any doubt as to his survival, when Daisy’s powers activated, they shook him apart. He’s gone-zo. And just when we were starting to see a nice little love triangle between him, Jemma, and Fitz start to form.
Whitehall sure seemed to die, too, shot through the heart (and Coulson’s to blame). His death was seemingly confirmed by the good Doctor Zabo - being an MD, we would like to think he could identify if there were still life signs. However, it’s important to remember that Daisy’s mother, an Inhuman, had the gift of long life, which was strong enough to turn Whitehall’s own biological clock back about forty years. It’s certainly within the realm of possibility that he survives this thanks to an Inhuman healing factor.
Random Hydra Agent number 6 also died - significant only because Sk-… Daisy (see, hard to get used to!) was the one to kill him, using the Diviner in her bare hands, pressed against him for a little mystical alien stoning. Cal killed a Hydra Agent too.
So, one team member, a couple Hydra randoms, and possibly Whitehall - pretty big for just the 10th episode of a 22 episode season.
Mack, Coulson, May, Simmons, Fitz, Raina, Hunter, Morse, and Daisy are all in various levels of danger at the end of the episode, too, though.
So, About that Crystal (and the Mist)4 of 12Inhumans use a special crystal called Terrigen, processed to release a mist, which then activates their hidden genetic potential. The process is, predictably, called Terrigenesis. That’s what we see emerge from the Diviner, a Terrigen crystal. Thanks to the mechanism of the temple in the hidden city, the crystal releases the mist, and transforms both Daisy and Raina, who had already demonstrated their ability to hold the Diviner previously.
Interestingly, Tripp is not affected by the mist itself - it’s when everything explodes, sending the shard of the Diviner into him, that he’s killed. This falls in-line with current Marvel Comics, wherein if regular humans are exposed to the mist, simply nothing happens. In previous comics, it was poisonous or severely damaging to the average human.
We’ll definitely be seeing these again, possibly with the name of the crystals being used, and some sort of origin. After all, we know there are more out there… (but more on that in a minute).
Mack’s Okay - We Hope5 of 12One guy who it looks like did not die is Agent Mack, who was in dire straights at the end of the last episode. The Temple used Mack as sort of a genetic watchdog - when he touched the floor of the city, he was temporarily possessed, as well as augmented significantly in strength and durability. After surviving a significant fall at the end of the episode, it looked like Mack’s possession left him after the release of the Terrigen Mists. Hopefully that means he’s okay.
Ward’s Got a New Pal6 of 12In “this can’t be good” developments, Ward ends the episode teamed-up with Agent 33, the female agent wearing May’s face (though it’s damaged), after she flees the scene when Whitehall (her only reason for living) is killed.
Of course how Ward winds up with her is infinitely more interesting. After the character echoed what Brett Dalton told us, that he has no loyalty to Hydra and is only working for himself, he continued to tell Skye that he was just fulfilling his promise to her, not denying it when Raina said he was doing all of this out of his twisted love.
And after helping save and release Skye from captivity… she shot him four times. “Never turn your back on your enemy, you taught me that,” she said adding insult to injury. Whoops. Can his love for her survive four shots to the back and side? Do we have to change it from #SkyeWard to #DaisyWard which doesn’t make nearly as much sense? Am I way overthinking shipping hashtags?
Anyway, looks like Ming-Na Wen will continue pulling double duty for awhile on the show when it resumes in March.
Who did Raina become?7 of 12Now here’s one of our first real mysteries… just who the hell is Raina? Executive Producer Jeff Bell told us of the character and actress, “Ruth Negga who plays Raina – we had no idea we were going to love her so much. So we kept giving her more and more – things like that can evolve.”
That sure sounds like she really wasn’t part of this Inhuman plan initially, but after being exposed to the Terrigen mists, she most certainly went through a change. She’s on screen for just a couple brief flashes, where we see claw like hands, a cat-like eye, and some whiskers; yes, it looks like she’s turned into a literal cat-woman.
So who could she be? There have been a couple of cat-people amongst the Inhumans, but usually as fairly minor and secondary characters. The only female one we could think of off the top of our heads was Minxi, who has appeared in a total of five issues, as far as we can tell.
But you know what Marvel could do, now that they’re introducing Inhumans? Make basically any darn character they please into an Inhuman, instantly simplifying origins across the board. So why not simply make Raina into Tigra? She’s a mid-tier Avengers character (at best) with a convoluted origin as the mystical defender of Cat People - seriously. She has links to Hydra, and a malleable enough background to play with.
Of course, the other glory of the Inhumans is, she could just be someone brand spanking new. We will definitely see much more of Raina in the latter half of the season.
What is the Theta Protocol?8 of 12Now this is interesting. Some of the best mysteries in comic books come from one-off lines that don’t get fully explored until months or even years later.
”If things go south, activate the Theta Protocol. That’s an order, Agent Koenig,” Coulson says to one of the many identical agents played by Patton Oswalt (btw, everyone caught the joke/hint that the Koenigs are all Life Model Decoys, right?).
What the heck is the Theta protocol? Theta is a type of brain wave, and the last time “protocol” was used in the MCU, it was for the activation of every Iron Man suit in Stark’s armory. Is this some kind of massive mind-wipe? Is it about transferring minds into LMDs? We know this much, there is no such thing as a throwaway line in the MCU. Remember, “It’s All Connected,” as Jeph Loeb and Kevin Feige love to say.
What’s the follow-up on Agent Carter?9 of 12Speaking of “It’s All Connected,” we know that Agent Carter, back in the 40s, dealt with several of the 0-8-4s. These items of unknown origin included a Diviner (notice how we didn’t say the Diviner? Keep reading, Marvel faithful!) and the Kree body, and she was the exact person who logged it and investigated it. We think there is no coincidence that Carter has been featured, very prominently, in this first half of the season. It’s not just to promote her 8 episode series; it almost has to be because she will be dealing with this Inhuman stuff - just 70 years in the past.
Either way, her inclusion in this mystery certainly makes the series, running from January through to the end of February, a must-watch for S.H.I.E.L.D. fans.
There are more Diviners/Crystals (and They’re All Connected)10 of 12Speaking of “It’s All Connected…” ba dum ching.
Anyway, in that nifty post credits scene (more on that in a minute - sensing a theme here?), we saw a second Diviner. Now that we know these house Terrigen Crystals, essential for Inhuman ability activation, they’ve become not just even more interesting - they’re essential to the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe!
Even more interesting, when one gets activated, the others glow and pulsate - and yes, we said others plural; while only one was shown, it was heavily implied that it was just one of many.
So, Who’s the Blind Inhuman and Who Did He Call?11 of 12Oh yeah, besides that other Diviner, there was that blind Inhuman. Well blind in the sense that he had no freaking eyes. The adult male, despite his lack of eyes, was holding a book when he first appeared on screen. He made a phone call, and a female voice answered. “Are you seeing this? There’s someone new - tell the others, I’m on it,” he said into the phone. That basically confirmed a few things - there are other Diviners besides the one he had in his possession and the one that Raina and Daisy activated, otherwise, how could whoever he’s calling “be seeing this”? Also, there are others out there. With one line and one little visual, we instantly know there’s a much bigger world of Inhumans out there. It’s a great, big, beautiful tomorrow, to borrow from another Disney property.
So who is the blind guy with the books? Well there’s one prominent, and brand new Inhuman in the current series, who happens to be blind (but can still read) - his name is Reader, and he’s certainly our front runner. Again, there’s every possibility that the other Inhumans, outside of Daisy (who is only being made Inhuman on this show), will all be brand new characters. Still, it’s worth picking up the first few issues of Inhuman to familiarize yourself with the possibilities. Again, we’ll definitely be seeing more of him, and hopefully some of the others, in the second half of the season.
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