Sunday, January 10, 2016

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 3.09: "Closure"

“Now you know how it feels, Coulson. To watch someone you care about bleed out right in front of you.”

If the battle between Ward and Coulson wasn’t already personal (it almost certainly was), it certainly becomes so in this episode. I think it was definitely already personal for Ward, but now it is for Coulson too. He makes the decision that Ward needs to go down at all costs, and he makes some rather rash decisions to make that happen. There are also some very rash decisions being made on the FitzSimmons front, and that can all be blamed on Ward, too. I’ve been starting to watch “Jane the Virgin” recently, and when, in the episode I watched last night, Jane’s prick (now ex, thank God) fiancé, Michael created an elaborate romantic set-up involving a police boat to try and win Jane back, I told Sarah I thought Michael should go jump in the bay. After watching this episode, I think Ward needs to jump in a bay too, preferably after going through a great deal of pain.

The episode opens with Coulson and Rosalind having a date night. They’re having their favorite take-out burgers by candlelight at Rosalind’s house, which is kind of adorable. They talk about Rosalind’s plans to return to the ATCU despite the revelation that the organization is actually a puppet of Hydra. Rosalind thinks she can do the most good from the inside, and Coulson eventually acquiesces, even though he thinks it’s a bad idea. It’s a moot point, though, because in the middle of this conversation, Rosalind takes a bullet to the neck. Somebody had been set up in sniper position, and that somebody is Ward. He shot her right through her kitchen window, and she immediately falls to the ground. While Coulson is kneeling over Rosalind’s body, still in shock, Ward calls him to taunt him. Coulson barely has time to text S.H.I.E.L.D. that he needs an extraction before Ward’s men arrive and he has to fight his way out of the house. At one point, he even sets off a mini bomb and jumps out a window.

Mack picks Coulson up in a car and drives him back to S.H.I.E.L.D. HQ, where everyone is in shock over what just happened. Nobody really seems to know what to say. Mack tells Bobbi he has been directed by Coulson to get the interrogation room ready. Meanwhile, Coulson goes into his office and starts destroying things, and everyone else can hear the commotion. Once he has calmed down a bit, Coulson says he wants to interview all the original team members for details about Ward. He starts with May. She doesn’t know much, because as she put it, she and Ward didn’t do much talking. Fitz also makes some interesting comments, considering Ward almost killed him. He says he felt that Ward was using him to replace something missing in his life. Daisy has the most to say, of course. She thinks Ward kills because he feels too much. Cry me a river.

Mack and FitzSimmons ask Banks what he knows about the NASA program that took Will through the portal. They learn that it was called Distant Star Pathfinder, and an independent contractor was involved (Hydra affiliated, no doubt). Meanwhile, Ward returns to Gideon after his rampage. Gideon shows Ward that he has a full set of stones derived from the monolith. The stones were supposed to be divided among the leaders of Hydra, but now Gideon has all of them. They’re close to achieving their goal (bringing the Inhuman back to Earth), and he’s very pissed at Ward for jeopardizing it all for the sake of “closure” with Coulson. Ward has most definitely succeeded in rattling Coulson, though. He attacks Hunter for failing to kill Ward, and Bobbi has to step in and break it up. Coulson is also blaming himself for bringing Ward into the team in the first place. Hunter wants another shot at killing Ward, and Coulson is more than good with that. He wants to join him. They need to go off book to do this, and Bobbi is going to be their pilot. Because he has to go off book, Coulson makes Mack of all people Acting S.H.I.E.L.D. director.

FitzSimmons and Banks take a field trip to a Distant Star facility to see what they can learn. Fitz and Simmons take the opportunity to express their frustration with their current situation. Simmons is starting to think it would be selfish to reopen the portal. She owes Will her life, but not at the expense of the many, many people who could be killed if the monster returns to Earth. Fitz disagrees, and so they continue the mission. Suddenly Banks loses control of himself. His gun starts moving independently, and it shoots him in the head. It’s Mr. Giyera, the Inhuman who has been working for Gideon. Who happens to be played by the same guy who plays the super cheesy Chairman on Iron Chef America. I love it! Anyway, Mr. Giyera says that Gideon is waiting to speak with FitzSimmons. Gideon wants FitzSimmons to tell him out to return from the planet on the other side of the portal. Ward sends in Mr. Giyera to torture Simmons while he talks with Ward. He says Ward always had a puppy dog crush on Simmons and now it’s too late for them. Simmons’ screams can be heard in the background.

Back at S.H.I.E.L.D. HQ, Daisy tells Mack what happened. He’s reluctant to mount a rescue mission, but he puts in a call to Coulson. After that phone conversation, Coulson violently throws his phone. He says his plan to defeat Ward had better work. That plan turns out to be a staged bank robbery that is a cover for capturing Ward’s younger brother, Thomas. After the successful capture, Coulson calls Ward and shows him that he has Thomas. Meanwhile, Bobbi and Hunter try to reassure Thomas that they don’t want to hurt him. Thomas warns them that their plan had better succeed, because Ward needs to be stopped. Bobbi puts a trace on Ward’s phone, and Thomas thinks he can keep Ward talking long enough for it to kick in. He tells Ward that their parents didn’t hide him (Thomas), he changed his name and moved so that Ward couldn’t find him. After the trace is successful, Coulson puts a stop to the call and tells Ward that he’s coming to put him down. It’s Ward’s turn to violently throw his phone, and he also threatens Simmons, which Fitz can hear. His job done, Bobbi lets Thomas go.

Mack’s got a potential idea, and he calls May in to talk about it. He wants to know her opinion of Lincoln. They also look at the plans for the building where Ward, Gideon, and FitzSimmons are holed up. Mack is still unsure of what to do, but May thinks he really does know. Mack ends up putting together a team to provide backup, led by Daisy and including Lincoln. Meanwhile, Gideon has Simmons brought to the portal opening. Soon Fitz joins her. Fitz has offered to go through the portal instead in exchange for Hydra no longer torturing Simmons. Simmons begs Fitz not to go and says he should let Hydra kill her instead. Fitz says he can’t lose her again. Ward and a team are also going to be accompanying Fitz. Coulson’s team can see that the Hydra team has started to go through the portal, and Coulson makes that rash decision I’ve been alluding to. He parachutes in after them, and Hunter tries to follow. The aircraft is under fire, though, so Bobbi needs to get moving. In the episode’s tag, we see that Coulson did indeed make it through the portal, too.

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