Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD Thoughts: Season 3 Finale “Absolution” and “Ascension”


By: Casey Johnston (@DarthHockey)

WARNING: There are spoilers ahead for the season 3 finale of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD.

A New Beginning

This finale was definitely a game changer for the whole series. While the show usually managed to be entertaining, it always teetered on the border between fresh and redundant. Hydra stuck around for little too long as did Grant Ward. The writers went through so many logical gymnastics that I was convinced that these two would make a sudden return sooner than we could say, “Hail Hydra” (there was an arc in the comics where the bodies Hive was occupying could be brought back to life). In short, theĀ Agents of SHIELD writers had a Hydra and Grant Ward/Brett Dalton addiction. But they appear ready to move on from that as Hydra was completely taken out a couple of episodes ago (and they need to stay dead) and Hive was shot into the atmosphere and nuked. I don’t care what anyone thinks, you can’t come back from that and be taken seriously as a show.

That brings us to the end of this season. A six month time jump showed us that Daisy is possibly a villainĀ or at least an anti-hero, Coulson may not be the Director of SHIELD now, and Dr. Radcliffe is working for or with SHIELD to create Life-Model Decoys. So many things happened in that short amount of time after Hive was taken out to tell us that this show will not be the same show we’ve been watching for three seasons, and that’s a good thing.


I don’t know what’s going to happen with Daisy. I can’t picture her not being a good character, but if this is the path the writers are taking her down then it makes sense for her development. Think back to season one and how reluctantly she joined SHIELD. While she found a surrogate family in Coulson, May, et. al., she also went through plenty of changes, both emotional and physical, along the way. She even had to eventually fight her own family and then watch as her father killed her mother. This season culminated in her standing by as the man she loved flew a nuke into space and blew himself up, a fate she desperately felt she deserved. After all that, it would require quite a suspension of disbelief to think she still wants to be a SHIELD agent, and it’s certainly not unbelievable to think she might move a little towards the bad side. This is a great twist for her character and I can’t wait to see where it goes next year.

Life-Model Decoys

LMDs are SHIELD robots that perfectly resemble a living person. The person being imitated can control everything the LMD does. I thought maybe these were being teased last season with the Koenig brothers, but that doesn’t appear to be the case now. If this isn’t handled correctly by the writers, it could lead to a lot of confusion and annoyance among viewers (no one will ever believe a character is really dead). But this will also lead to the show becoming even more comic book-y, which is never a bad thing.


Who was Coulson referring to at the end when he mentioned “the Director?” Is he no longer the Director of SHIELD, or maybe he was referring to the Director of the ATCU or another agency? We’ll have to wait until next season, or until the first spoiler is leaked, to find out. This is the type of question I love being left with.

The Secret Warriors

Are the Secret Warriors finished? If so, that was a disappointing arc for them. They were teased going all the way back to the season two finale. So much of the marketing was centered around them and we barely got to see them in action. I don’t know what will happen, but please bring them back in some form next year. We barely got to see their story unfold.


RIP, Lincoln. We barely knew ye.

Thanks for reading!