Warning: The following contains major spoilers from tonight’s new episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. If you haven’t tuned in yet, you may want to click away. Consider yourselves warned.
We had a feeling that whatever Hive had up his (their?) sleeve after returning to Earth was going to be pretty major, but we had no idea it was going to literally put all of humanity into jeopardy.
As the team swung into action on tonight’s all-new episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to rescue an infected Daisy (Chloe Bennet)—who was quaking the entire S.H.I.E.L.D. compound apart after revealing she’d been turned when we last saw her—she and Hive (Brett Dalton) embarked on their demented SkyeWard reunion, which also involved collecting more Inhumans to infect and apparently buying a whole damn town.
At first, Hive’s plan sounds beautiful. Admirable, even. “After we’re finished, there will be no more war. No more pain. Especially now that we’re together,” he told Daisy. Who among us doesn’t want to see an end to war and pain? Let’s hear more!
“It’s time we took back this planet,” he continued. “Made it the home Inhumans have always deserved.” Oh. Um. Maybe we should’ve stopped while we were ahead.
Of course, none of this was alarming to Daisy. She’s always wanted a family, a place to belong, and, as Fitz (Iain De Ceastecker) and Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) have discovered, Hive’s parasitic control has her all doped up on pleasure. “It’s like this emptiness I’ve always had is gone,” she says. Hoo boy, this is one habit that’s going to be hard to kick.
That’s not to say that there isn’t a plan to rescue Daisy. The team always has a plan and, tonight, that involved FitzSimmons heading off to Romania to find the disgraced Dr. Holden Radcliffe (John Hannah), a rumored transhumanist (think people who replace body parts with tech a la Coulson’s hand, though not out of necessity, but a desire to become something more than human) who they believe to be their best hope at disinfecting their fallen agent. Little did they know that it was a race to Radcliffe’s lair.
After Daisy and Hive scooped up Alisha (an Inhuman who can send doubles of herself elsewhere) and James (that Australian guy from last week who hadn’t gone through Terrigenesis yet)—as well a mysterious object buried beneath James’ house that Hive only refers to as “the only thing that can destroy me”—they hightail it to Romania and snatch Radcliffe right out from Fitz’s hands. Daisy tries to tell Fitz that she doesn’t want to have to hurt him or Simmons, but it’s a bit of a mixed message because she’s also using her quake powers to nearly choke him to death.
While Fitz was having the life almost squeezed out of him, Simmons was cornered by Hive, allowing her to encounter whatever of Will is actually left inside. Sensing not very much, she fired off three shots into his gut before getting away, but it didn’t do any lasting damage to the insane Inhuman because the episode closed with he and his band of happy host heads, along with the captured Radcliffe, walking down an empty street as Hive revealed even more of his plan.
“We are one organism, seeking change. And with your help we’re gonna redefine humanity, permanently,” he told the doctor. How, you ask? “By recreating the same Kree experiment that was done to me. And this is where it all begins.” And no, not in the house they’re standing outside of. He means the whole freaking town. It might be time for Coulson to call in some of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s friends for help. Where are the Avengers when you need ’em?
Warning: This story contains major spoilers from Tuesday’s episode of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Read at your own risk!
As fast as the Secret Warriors were united they were disbanded, mostly because one of their own was inadvertently working for Hive. Twist!
Remember how Hive could literally infect other Inhumans and they’d suddenly become loyal to him? That’s what happened during Tuesday’s episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., when Daisy (Chloe Bennet) and her ragtag team broke into the Hydra base to save Coulson (Clark Gregg) and the gang.
After capturing Malick (Powers Boothe), the head of Hydra revealed that Hive could infect any Inhuman, putting a target on the Secret Warriors. Initially, Lincoln (Luke Mitchell) was revealed to be the culprit, having stowed the Kree orb away in his locker. But it was all a frame-job as Daisy was ultimately revealed to be infected and blindly loyal to Hive — so much so she destroyed the S.H.I.E.L.D. base on her way out. EW caught up with Bennet to get the scoop:
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So presumably this is what you meant when you teased there was some crazy stuff ahead?
CHLOE BENNET: Oh girl, I wish this was as crazy as it gets. Oh my God, it gets even worse!
When did you know that Daisy was going to be infected by Hive?
We found out a couple months ago, so that sucked. [Laughs.] It was really hard. They brought me into the office. They’re like, “We have some news for you. This next coming episode, you are going to be swayed by Hive, and you are going to basically be under his control, his drug. He’s a parasite, he’s gotten into your brain. He’s able to basically manipulate you and change your motives. You’re still you, you’re still Daisy, you’re still as powerful as Daisy, but your intentions for what you want are completely different, and that’s super dangerous.” I was like, “Nooooo! I can’t!” You just defend your character. I feel like I’m Daisy more than I’m Chloe, so when I found out that was going to happen and I can’t control any part of it, it was a big challenge for me as an actress.
Is this reversible?
I think anything is possible. We brought Clark [Gregg] back to life, so I think yes, I’m sure they can find a way.
This is a fascinating dynamic — she is devoted to Hive, who looks like Ward.
Who isn’t Ward and I’m not Skye, but it’s SkyeWard and I know fans are going to love it a little bit, but also be very confused.
Will Hive and Daisy connect on a level similar to what we saw with Ward and Skye since Hive has those memories?
I’ve gotten a lot of questions like that: “Well, is she drawn to him because it’s Ward?” It’s the exact opposite. You’ll see moving forward that they do have a discussion about that, and she’s like, “No, I hate Ward.” It has nothing to do with him being Ward, it really has to do with the fact that she’s under the influence of drugs. That’s what the bosses told me when we were moving forward. They said, “She is basically on a large amount of drugs and not under her control. She didn’t take them, someone gave them to her.” She’s basically been Inhuman-roofied, is how I like to describe it. There’s something that Hive does to her — there’s a void that she’s felt her entire life as someone who is an orphan, who has always wanted to belong. Immediately, that emptiness and that sadness that she’s felt is gone, and that’s a really powerful thing to give someone — the immediate opportunity to belong and have all their insecurities go away. That’s one of the most powerful drugs you could give someone. That’s what we’re dealing with.
Does she really not care that she’s basically left Team S.H.I.E.L.D. to die?
I don’t think she even understands as Daisy. It’s funny to talk about it, because now I sound like the writers, because these were all questions I was asking. “How could she leave S.H.I.E.L.D.? What do you mean?!” It was really frustrating to me. It’s like, “You’re under drugs. You are yourself, but your entire intentions and your entire existence — the meaning of your existence has shifted into something completely different.” That was a weird thing to play and really hard for me as an actress, because you want to defend your character and understand their choices. You have to keep going, “You’re under the influence, you’re intoxicated, so you’re not being yourself,” but you are being yourself, which is why it gets really complicated.
Are we going to see her try to fight this at all?
You’ll see that. You see her getting really frustrated, because she obviously has run-ins with the team in the future, and crazy s— goes down, basically. You can see that there’s an internal struggle happening, but Hive’s power over her will always win.
Out of everyone on the team, who do you think has the best chance of getting through to Daisy?
Obviously it’s Lincoln (Luke Mitchell) and Coulson who have the most influence. She loves Coulson like a dad and she loves Lincoln as her boyfriend and partner. It’s really hard. Basically, I’ve been in a very emotional state for months now.
Hive had her kill Malick and destroy the base. Can you tease what Hive will want her to do in the future?
The dangerous part about that is I don’t think Hive had her kill anyone. It’s confusing. She had that idea on her own, and she goes, “I know something we need.” So it’s really about impressing him and working for him. It’s really tricky. Moving forward, it’s going to be such a weird thing for fans. Obviously fans of SkyeWard are going to be like, “Yay, but this is weird — no!” I can say that, moving forward, the series won’t be the same at all. Nothing about the series will be the same, and the finale is truly one of the most — we’re shooting it now and I’ve just been in stitches for days. The whole show will never be the same again.
Will those terrigen crystals she stole come into play in the finale?
They’ll come into play sooner than the finale.
Are we heading for an all-out war between Hive’s Inhumans and those who are with S.H.I.E.L.D.?
Yeah, it’s not going to be easy. There’s going to obviously be a struggle. There’s an aspect of it that was kind of exciting. We get to basically see how powerful Daisy has been and how much she’s been holding back. Without her moral compass working, her powers are so much more powerful than we even thought. You even see it with Malick; the way she kills him is so brutal and not something you’ve ever seen from her before. Moving forward, that will continue to happen. That really ties into the debate in Civil War. You see how an Inhuman in the wrong hands, or manipulated by the wrong person, is incredibly dangerous. You really see how much control Daisy has had up to this point of her powers. Then you see them unleash a little bit.
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.
I’ve added missing screencaps and stills of Chloe on Agents of the S.H.I.E.L.D. as well as some additions to one of Chloe’s recent appearances. Enjoy.
• March 22 – Celebrating Women Of Power With Marvel Contest Of Champions Mobile Game – recent additions
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• Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – Season 3 On The Set
Four years ago, Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD star Chloe Bennet was known professionally as Chloe Wang, aspiring actress and teenage dabbler in Shanghai pop stardom. In the states, however, Hollywood casting agents were less than welcoming.
At least until she changed her last name.
“Oh, the first audition I went on after I changed my name, I got booked,” Bennet tells The Daily Beast, in an interview timed to Marvel’s Women of Power month. “So that’s a pretty clear little snippet of how Hollywood works.”
That audition was for the role of Hailey, an office assistant on ABC’s Nashville. That same year, Bennet was cast as the lead in Marvel’s first cinematic universe TV show, the Joss Whedon-created SHIELD. Over three seasons, Skye, a headstrong young “hacktivist” who gets recruited by SHIELD and eventually discovers her real identity, the half-Inhuman Daisy Johnson (a.k.a. Quake), has evolved into what is still a rarity on TV: a superhero who happens to be both female and Asian-American.
“I wish people talked about that more,” Bennet says. “I don’t know if it’s good or bad, but when Supergirl came out, people were like, ‘This is the only superhero on TV that’s a female!’ And I was like, ‘Hold on! I’m pretty sure Daisy’s been here.’ And I also happen to be half-Chinese and I’m so proud of that.”
“I want to be clear because some of my Asian-American fans seem to think I did that [changed last names] because I didn’t want to known as Chinese, but it’s so the opposite,” she adds. “I just wanted to be known as me and let my personality define who I was, rather than my ethnicity.”
Bennet—who is loud and funny and blunt in conversation—then launches into her SHIELD audition story, told with a mixture of endearing self-loathing and pride.
“When we were down to seven girls [up for the role of Skye], it was this completely diverse group of girls I was up against. And it was really about who was right for the part,” she says. “We were testing and we came out of the room and I was up next and Joss Whedon was there and said, ‘Hi.’ I got kind of nervous and looked at him. He just looked really tired. And I was like, ‘You look like shit’—this right before I went in for my last audition.
“He started laughing and was like, ‘Well I am tired,’” she says, groaning at the memory. “And I was like, ‘I mean, you look tired in a good way, like you’re really busy! And accomplished!’ It was so Skye Season 1 that I think he was like, ‘Yup, that’s her.’”
Because of Marvel’s “cinematic universe” design, SHIELD takes place during the events of the comic book movie franchise’s big-screen exploits—meaning that whatever havoc the Avengers wreak in their city-smashing adventures has real-world consequences for the show’s on-the-ground SHIELD agents.
When Captain America: The Winter Soldier revealed that the evil Nazi organization HYDRA had been embedded within SHIELD since shortly after World War II, the show, whose entire first season built up to the events of Winter Soldier, took that and ran with it, spinning out two seasons of intrigue.
But while Marvel’s movies often affect the show, SHIELD’s narrative rarely bears weight on the big-budget blockbusters—even when the stories it’s telling should. In the upcoming Captain America: Civil War, for example, Marvel’s superheroes choose whether to submit to official government oversight, a measure (called the Sokovia Accords, the onscreen version of the comic books’ Superhero Registration Act) pushed on them by a United Nations panel.
Incorporating SHIELD’s ongoing Inhumans storyline would actually raise the stakes of the movie: the presence of hundreds if not thousands of undiscovered Inhumans (people with the ability to develop superpowers) would give governments extra incentive to push the Sokovia Accords on all superhumans. Recent interviews with Civil War directors Joe and Anthony Russo, however, indicate the directing duo are entirely unconcerned with what’s going on in the world of SHIELD.
“I think we’re all on the same page besides them,” Bennet says, sighing at the missed opportunity. “But they’re gonna do what they’re gonna do, and I’m really happy with our little show. We’ve been dealing with the topic of Civil War for a while now—at least, Daisy has. She’s a SHIELD agent but also a human and she’s completely torn.”
If Bennet had her way, of course, Civil War would bring certain SHIELD-specific changes to the Marvel universe: “I would like us to be put in the movie,” she laughs. “That would make sense. I would like the Avengers to find out that Agent Coulson’s still alive. And Daisy’s incredibly powerful. I think you’ll see toward the end of the season her strength as a character and a leader, and her power as a superhero really expands—I’m just saying, the Avengers could use our help, if they just asked.”
Marvel’s TV universe, in the meantime, continues to expand, with street-level heroes like Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist getting their own Netflix shows. With the latter series’s casting announcement—revealing that Game of Thrones actor Finn Jones will be taking on the role of Danny Rand—a familiar refrain decrying the MCU’s lack of diversity reverberated across the Internet again.
When asked if she was among the thousands calling for the traditionally white Danny Rand—a kung fu master—to be played by an Asian actor, Bennet answers without missing a beat.
“One-hundred percent. I actually saw that [casting] news and I can’t lie, I was a little [disappointed],” she says, before breaking into laughter again. “I love Marvel, but…”
“I know they want to stay true to their characters but, you know, every female character in Marvel comics also has, like, triple-Z-sized boobs,” she reasons. “So if they cast actors based on the way characters look on the page, I don’t think even Scarlett Johansson—well, maybe Scarlett Johansson—would be in the movies.”
As for Marvel’s ever-expanding movie arm—which will feature its first character of color in a standalone film in 2018’s Black Panther—Bennet maintains there’s room for improvement there as well.
“I think they could do better,” she says. “You know, there are a lot of white guys named Chris. But I think they will, because it’s important. It’s the right thing to do. Marvel’s a smart company and I think they will represent their fans from around the world. They can take note from the way we’re going on the show, ‘cause we’re doing a pretty good job.”
In terms of gender dynamics, Bennet points out that “90 percent of the rescuing” done in SHIELD is by female characters and “90 percent” of the stunts are performed by women actors as well, including herself. Still, she’s anxiously awaiting her character Daisy’s introduction as a playable character in the Marvel mobile game Contest of Champions in the fall, for the sake of watching Quake in action minus the actual stunt work.
“I’m so stoked. My brother is so jealous,” she laughs. “I’m really excited to get to do all these stunts without actually getting hurt. I’m currently covered in bruises.”
Bruises never stopped a badass lady from rescuing those in need, of course. “[Our characters] don’t need any rescuing from men,” Bennet says. “We can handle ourselves very well, thank you.”