The episode starts with Fitz in the cryochamber. Enoch is talking to him about a quandary. Then the ship gets cut into two.
One year later, Davis and Piper are “landing” a ship on a hostile planet. They communicate with Daisy when they land. They’ve gotten caught by the hostile aliens, D’Rillians, and are about to be boarded.
When they board, all they find is Daisy. The leader asks her for an authorization code that she doesn’t have. She explains that they needed fuel, so they have to land. They think she’s a princess and until they identify her. Once that happens, she dismantles them. Simmons comes out and tells the currently pinned-down leader that they are looking for someone.
Mack is back at the Lighthouse with a bunch of redshirts. They are tracking readings that Simmons made before she left. May and Yo-Yo are heading strike teams to the location of the readings, which is in a park in Indiana. Some kind of post-apocalyptic biker man comes through a dimensional rift. Another tries to follow him but gets stuck in a concrete wall Fringe style. May’s strike team reaches him, but he shoots the plane instead of surrendering.
Back at the Lighthouse, they need answers. One of the redshirts suggest that the dimensional rifts may lay across laylines. Since this is far more of a sci-fi than a fantasy show, I’m surprised they are going to use that, but ok.
After the spiel, Mack goes into his office and listens to a hologram of Coulson. May enters and they talk. It’s been a year since Coulson died. In honor of that, Mack wants to get moving on a proposal of May’s. May is now in charge of recruiting and they need some brains, not just brawn.
The D’Rillian leader is hanging upside down and Simmons is interrogating him. They found half of Fitz’s ship, a ship that should be untraceable and was cut in two, and they he sold Enoch traceable fuel. He didn’t, but he does have the other half of the ship.
Yo-Yo is training with May. Yo-Yo and Mack broke up and May now gives heart to hearts and relationship advice. This is all kinds of weird. I’m glad that May’s opening up and everything, but I hate that Yo-Yo and Mack haven’t worked through their issues. Anyway, May says that Yo-Yo needs to work on her poker face, because May noticed that Yo-Yo has chemistry with one of the redshirts. If they become important and last more than a couple of episodes, then I will remember their names.
The cryochamber is still in the plane, but Fitz isn’t in it. It’s great that he isn’t dead, but they have no more leads.
May was onto something as Yo-Yo is actually dating the redshirt. The problem is that they don’t want to tell anyone.
May finds Mack in a bar, which he says is one of his “grounding wires,” a term holo-Coulson explained was necessary to the maintaining of sanity. He’s also somehow found a Baptist church in New York. Anyway, May found the department head for her proposal. He’s an older guy with a drinking problem that used to be friends with her ex-husband. His name is Dr. Marcus Benson and they want him to be in charge of rebuilding the S.H.I.E.L.D Academy. He tells them repeatedly that he doesn’t want the job, but they eventually wear him down.
Daisy and Piper are worried about Simmons. Piper thinks that maybe there was an escape pod and Fitz is fine. Daisy wants to go home.
Simmons decides to get into the cryochamber either because she wants to be close to Fitz or she wants to wake up when they find him.
Our post-apocalyptic biker meets up with his friends. They are all waiting on their leader, who is set to come through a museum. Since they can’t have that, they are going to blow it up. Also, one of them makes a really weird reference to butterflies.
Simmons finds something in the cryo-chamber. She can now read the alien language and found an engraving which says, “Low temperature suspension chamber,” and names a planet. That’s where Fitz will be. She knows it. The problem is that they might not have enough fuel to go as deep into space as that planet is and everyone else wants to go home and regroup. Then they suddenly have a new problem: a proximity alarm from the Confederacy, who I totally forgot was still a thing.
Dr. Benson examines the guy fused into concrete, who comes back to life to tell them something is coming and then dies again in the most tropey moment ever. He then drops something which conveniently contains the time and place where the leader is coming through. It’s the Museum of Natural History in Indiana and it’s on a layline.
S.H.I.E.L.D. gets to the museum almost immediately after the bad guys do. The bad guys send the butterfly girl out as a distraction. These are definitely suicide bomber types, but she cuts herself in the head and smiles. She distracts S.H.I.E.L.D. and talks about butterflies while the other bad guys blow up the museum.
After they all regain consciousness, one of the redshirts cuffs the girl. May checks on Yo-Yo, and then, through the rainbow smoke of the dimensional rift, drives a truck, also very Fringe like. Coulson walks out of the truck and shoots the redshirt holding the girl, going full Winter Soldier. May sees him as he drives away with the girl.
The Confederacy has spotted them and they need to jump. They want to jump to Earth, but that isn’t where they are going. Simmons put in the coordinates for the planet and punches it.
Fitz is a mechanic of some sort and is speaking an alien language. He then injects himself with something and his eyes turn green. He works for someone called the Controller, and I’m betting is some kind of alien hash or heroin or something.
Then there is a wonderful tribute to Stan Lee.
I do not need another thing that makes me have nightmares about butterflies. Also, and this may be just how little I trust Marvel, I didn’t think that they’d actually kill Coulson. I thought it was a trick and I’m not sure how I feel about it now. All in all, this looks like a great set up to another season that will rip my heart out and tear it to shreds. 8/10.