Agents of SHIELD Season 4 Finale Ghost Rider

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 4 Premiere Recap: Hot Wheels

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. opened Season 4 with the introduction of a well-publicized new threat — the hot-headed, vengeance-seeking Ghost Rider — but closed its premiere with a second, equally ominous twist.

Picking up six weeks after the May finale’s six-month time jump, Daisy — working solo and known to the public as Quake — is tracking a white supremacist group when she witnesses them being methodically killed by a mysterious figure driving a ’69 Dodge Charger that becomes engulfed in demonic flame. One surviving supremacist is taken into police custody, while the other is captured by the car’s driver — Ghost Rider.

Meanwhile at S.H.I.E.L.D. — which is now fully staffed but operating independently from the government — Coulson and Mack have been trying to intercept Daisy and bring her back into the fold, May is training her own strike team and a promoted Simmons (now the “S.A.D.I.S.T.”) reports directly to the unseen, unnamed new Director. When May shares intel that Daisy has been spotted in Los Angeles, Coulson and Mack — though pulled off the case — set out to find her, but not before Mack has a rather (ahem) warm reunion with Yo-Yo.

While Ghost Rider Agents of SHIELD Season 4ends up killing his uncooperative prisoner, Daisy visits the other supremacist, who had been hospitalized. He, though, seems to know what he was up against and falls dead, after claiming that if the Ghost Rider even wounds you your soul is doomed. Later, we learn that Yo-Yo is meeting covertly providing Daisy with bone-healing meds as well as S.H.I.E.L.D. intel that has helped her stay a step ahead of Coulson and Mack.

Back at the base, when Simmons confronts her about tipping off Coulson, May gives attitude about working so closely with the new Director. Simmons insists she doesn’t like the Director (or his “color-coded” security protocols) either, but is using his trust to keep control of situations and protect her friends. That said, to give the appearance of disciplinary measures, she dispatches May and her strike team to stop Coulson and Mack.

With Simmons (now his full-on sweetheart) busy with her new gig, Fitz hangs with Dr. Radcliffe and discovers the scientist’s very secret — and unauthorized — new project: an ultra-lifelike artificial intelligence in the form of a beautiful female, named Aida. Radcliffe is convinced he’s almost perfected a useful AI for S.H.I.E.L.D.’s use that will not harm humans, dubbed the “Life Model Decoy.” Fitz at first insists that Radcliffe reveal his work to Simmons, but when it becomes evident that Aida — though conceived as a live-saving decoy (or “shield”) — could be turned into a dangerous weapon, they agree to keep mum until the tech is perfected.

Seeking out Ghost Rider, Daisy is led to an auto yard where she meets Robbie Reyes, who is eventually revealed to be the flaming-skulled avenger (with a lowercase “A”). An intense fight ensues between the two, to the point that Daisy eventually invites Ghost Rider to go ahead and kill her, feeling guilty as she does about all the pain she has caused. But Ghost Rider refuses to kill her, leaving the scene instead. Later, Daisy secretly looks on as Robbie Reyes picks up his younger brother, who is paralyzed and uses a wheelchair.

Meanwhile, May’s team intercepts Coulson and Mack just as they’re monitoring from afar the strange exchange of an exotic box, inside of which is the power to bring enhanced people “to their knees.” When the box is opened, some sort of ghostly spirit (a woman?) wafts out, giving some of the thugs a withered, spectral look. The S.H.I.E.L.D. agents wind up recovering the box, but in the episode’s final scene, May is talking to Coulson about the mission when suddenly she sees his face briefly take on the withered spectral aspect that afflicted the thugs earlier, before returning to normal. Is something wrong with May, or is something wrong with Coulson….?

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  1. steven says:

    Anyone notice the two Buffy references? A major female character (Daisy) going dark a la Dark Willow, and somebody builds a female robot.

  2. mike says:

    awesome chapter why do I get the feeling the new Director is going to be a pain in the ass but what ever infected those guys may have infected May and that is not good

  3. mike says:

    awesome start to the season why do I get the feeling the new Director is going to be a pain in the ass but what ever infected those guys may have infected May and that is not good

  4. Okay…we KNOW our team is going to get back together…it’s not the 1st season they’ve started apart. But I just hope it happens soon. This is a “buddy show” at heart. It just happens to be an edge of your seat, action packed buddy dramedy with sci-fi/fantasy elements. But its true strength lies in character, not plot, and that is what this ep was lacking. Still, it’s nice to have SHIELD back; it will just be better 3 eps or so in when it begins hitting its stride again.

  5. JCPrime1 says:

    The fact that the show didn’t bring Hunter and Bobbi back after Most Wanted was passed on just rubs me the wrong way. I have a hard time caring now about this show.

    • kitsunesaru says:

      They didn’t say they’re never coming back. They are wanted at the moment so they can’t just waltz back to SHIELD. But I’m sure they’ll pop up at some point.

      • laurelnev says:

        Actually, they said to keep them put of jail, Bobbi and Hunter had to agree they’d NEVER work for ANY government-related organization, foreign or domestic, or any kind of diplomatic bodfy, and they most certainly could never ever ever come back to SHIELD. They took to PERMANENT a story line action than was needed for a potential spin off. So yeah, they pretty much wrote them as permanent an exit as Lucy Lawless and Agent Triplett. ;) And I miss them already. But I’m still missing Tripp and Raina too. (Yes, even Raina.)

        • Tom says:

          Just because the stakes are that high doesn’t mean they can’t find a way around it

        • JCPrime1 says:

          It was a dumb move IMO. The pilot being picked up was always a long shot. AOS got rid of two great characters for nothing in the end.

          I agree with Tom that they could easily find a way around it since neither are dead. But it looks like the show doesn’t want to.

          • laurelnev says:

            Well, 1st they have to get around the Sokovia Accords, but really, without a lot of retconning there IS no way around it…except to maybe have them do an arc as their mercenary friends who they rope in to work around the new SHIELD constraints. But alas, I ‘m sure we’ll see another Koenig long before we see Bobbi/Hunter rejoin our team.

          • JCPrime1 says:

            Coulson was dead and they brought him back. The show could easily find a way to write Bobbi and Hunter out of the trouble they are in. But it seems like TPTB have no interest in this couple anymore. Sad.

        • Agent 86 says:

          That was such a waste of Lucy Lawless’ immense talent. Then again, they have recycled actors within the universe before (e.g. Alfre Woodard), so maybe there is a chance that we’ll see Lucy Lawless in a bigger and better role, perhaps as Abigail Brand.

          • laurelnev says:

            Agreed. And SO over-hyped for such a brief cameo. Probably too high budget for a longer arc (kind of like why we never see Fury, although he is often alluded to.)

        • kitsunesaru says:

          That doesn’t mean they couldn’t come back at all. Not to SHIELD the organization maybe, but to SHIELD the show I’m sure thy can find a way.

      • JCPrime1 says:

        There must be some backstage issues. Either the actors feel burned from their pilot not being picked up and didn’t want to return or the show just didn’t want them back for some reason. Especially since AP got a new gig.

        • kitsunesaru says:

          I thought I read an interview from someone with the show saying basically “maybe” they’ll be back in the near future and being all coy about it. Anyway I guess we’ll see!

  6. James D says:

    Awesome. somebody got a bigger CGI budget this year because hot damn (pun totally intended) ghost rider looked freakin awesome. So excited for this season. last scene had me worried though they better not kill off May.

  7. Quinten says:

    Well that was pretty damn entertaining. They did a much better job with Ghost Rider than I was expecting and I like where all the characters are at the moment. Excited to see where this season goes.

  8. Writerpatrick says:

    I was searching around for what possible character was in the box and the only one I could come up with was Witchbreaker. Although it could be a holdover of the Hive.

  9. Hollie says:

    If May tries to kill everyone because of that ghost thing, RIP all the characters. That aside, great episode! CGI budget was great, writing was great (Fitz had some great one liners! In fact Fitz in general was great today, as usual I guess!) it wasn’t quite as epic as Laws of Nature, but SHIELD has found a comfortable groove and it is clearly setting up for another great season. Logically, this will likely be the last season but I really hope it isn’t!!!!

  10. Jerri says:

    Niiiiice! Great start to a new season. Way to kick things up a notch! Although, why on Earth did the guy let Quake escape? Is he going to have a thing for her like Ward did? C’mon!

  11. The Kaibosh says:

    Nice connection to Doctor Strange! And really early too. The ghost in the box made everyone’s face look like corpses just like Mads Mikkelsen‘s character, Kaecilius in Doctor Strange.

  12. KayCeeCee says:

    Dr. Radcliffe was so playing Fitz. He probably knew that Simmons wouldn’t have come, so he would be able to convince Fitz to help him finish Aida.

  13. Douglas Anderson says:

    I was really disappointed in the episode. I was hoping for a really smash bang in your face get your attention episode. What we got was the same old crap. A whole new bunch of 4 or 5 sub plots and internal secrets that will blow up in everybody’s face later on. Oh yeah, lets throw in a really hot nude android. How much do you want to bet that it will go berserk and try to kill someone on down the road or be taken over by the bad guys? I am sick to death of Daisy! Since when did the show turn into the Daisy Chronicles? The whole Marvel franchise went down the tubes with the whole civil war theme. Can’t see it recovering. How long will the Ghost Rider thing go on? Piss poor writing. “Oh kill me, I am not worthy” who writes this tripe? If the show lasts past the holiday break, I’ll be surprised. I’ll give it a couple more episodes to see if they recover some semblance of the first couple of shows way back when it well written and at least had a direction to go on.

  14. Joey Padron says:

    Good start to season premiere. I have a feeling the new director will be a pain in the ass for Coulson and the others. Can’t wait for next episode! Happy the show is back!

  15. Joey Padron says:

    I mean good start to new season.

  16. Luis Roman says:

    The show has found it’s rhythm. This was an outstanding premiere episode, establishing SHIELD’s new normal (Jemma’s promotion, Coulson and Mack’s bonding, May’s frustration,) giving us a glimpse into where Daisy is at emotionally and following her on her personal mission, giving Fitz a secret to keep from Jemma even as their relationship deepens, introducing the Life Model Decoy (welcome, Mallory Jansen!) and finally, introducing the Ghost Rider! I appreciate that they didn’t hold back and tease the Rider’s appearance, but gave us a good look, with lots of chemistry between Chloe Bennet and Gabriel Luna! So nice to see Natalia Cordova-Buckley show up as Yo-Yo, and to see her display her personal code of honor, assisting Daisy with SHIELD intel while working as a SHIELD asset – good for her getting under Mack’s skin – I hope they get to some fraternizing soon!
    I can’t love Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson enough – the way he is able to take everything in stride, while still showing concern for Daisy. I really like May’s strike team – I hope we get to see more of them in action. As far as i’m concerned, you can’t have enough John Hannah on screen; I love Radcliffe and Fitz together and look forward to how the LMD experiment unfolds (and eventually goes off the rails!)
    All in all, an A+ debut for “Agents of SHIELD!”

  17. Dominique says:

    it was an okay episode, not the strongest season opener, but still a good one. i like the ghost rider so far. i also hope this season they will go back to being an esemble show, instead of it being the daisy johnson show and everyone else are just supportive characters.

  18. kirads09 says:

    it was a good episode and fantastic introduction of Ghostrider. I just am so tired of the Skye/Daisy/Quake “I deserve to die” guilt ridden gone rogue runaway thing. After ALL THE TIMES Shield literally and figuratively SAVED her. I don’t want that to be a central theme of this season – again. I know Coulson loves her as a daughter, but I think this continued attempt to rescue her and bring her back time and time again is a horrible waste of resources and time. Shield would be better off just going all out and doing an inhuman spinoff with Daisy as lead and different separate missions – IMO. I was surprised they didn’t show Jason O’Mara as the new director yet. I think May was affected by whatever was in that box and that is why she saw Coulson’s face like that. Hope that doesn’t spell bad news for her – or him!