Tuesday 10:00 PM on ABC (Returning September 20, 2016)

Ding dong, the psychopath is dead!

That's right, in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s ultimate showdown between the villain Clairvoyant, a.k.a. John Garrett, and Agent Coulson, the remnants of S.H.I.E.L.D. came out on top thanks in part to Nick Fury.

After the former S.H.I.E.L.D. director rescued FitzSimmons from the middle of the ocean, Nick showed up to help Coulson take Garrett down. Deathlok was also more than happy to help Coulson and Nick defeat Garrett after Skye saved his son. But it was Coulson who got the last laugh. After Garrett jumped in the machine that fully turned him into the new Deathlok, Coulson quickly obliterated him with the laser from "0-8-4.," and Ward was then arrested. 

But it wouldn't've be a Marvel-esque finale without a few tag scenes that raised new mysteries for Season 2, including the newly named S.H.I.E.L.D. director Coulson mindlessly carving the mysterious alien equation on a wall and Raina telling a man with silver hair (not to mention burns and apparently dripping skin?) that she'd found his daughter... and handing him a picture of Skye.

So, is Garrett really gone? Will Fitz survive his ordeal? And who the heck was that mystery man? You've got questions and we've got answers, courtesy of S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producers Jeffrey Bell and Jeph Loeb:


Nick Fury has named Coulson the new director of S.H.I.E.L.D. and instructed him to rebuild the organization, but I can't imagine it will be that easy. Is rebuilding the goal of the series now?

Jeffrey Bell: God, I hope it's not easy. Right now, there is no S.H.I.E.L.D. They're viewed as a terrorist organization around the world, so I think there's a long route to go. We have no funding, we have an authority, we have no buildings. That seems like a pretty great uphill climb to have to do. It's a good goal to have, whether it takes a season or more, it provides a lot of good stories.


How did Samuel L. Jackson's cameo come together?

Jeph Loeb: Well, Nick Fury is the head of S.H.I.E.L.D., and our show is Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., so with what we knew coming out of Captain America 2, we knew the only way for our show to continue with any tense of authority was to have him and Coulson get together. We just made sure with Marvel that we could make that happen.


When S.H.I.E.L.D. was first picked up to series, the big question was HOW Coulson was alive, but throughout the series, that question shifted to WHY. Was the plan always ultimately to say that he's an Avenger? 

Loeb: I have to give credit to the extraordinary synergy that we have with the movie studio. Our Chief Creative Officer [Joe Quesada] pushed from the beginning to get to this stage in Coulson's life, which will be both challenging and exciting.


We know that the T.A.H.I.T.I. serum does something to people to make them go crazy. Does that tag scene indicate the beginning of Coulson losing it?

Bell: That's a great question. 

Loeb: Just because there's no S.H.I.E.L.D. doesn't mean there's a Level 8. 


Garrett was blown up. Can you definitively say that he's gone for good? What came with that decision not to keep him around?

Bell: This is Marvel, so nobody's definitely gone. 

Loeb: We began our story around a character who died. It's always interesting when people ask us if he's really dead. 

Bell: Our team, particularly Coulson, has had a lot of setbacks this season. He found out that everything he believed in was a lie, a man on his team betrayed him, the whole organization was full of corrupt people. We felt like we needed to bring this season to a certain conclusion and give our team a handful of wins, as much as there are other threads still loose. Wrapping up the Deathlok arc for Mike Peterson and having him wander the earth like Cain, and Skye looking for where she came from and those breadcrumbs are still out there. We thought we needed a couple of wins, so capturing Ward felt like one. We talked a lot about different ways [we could go] with Garrett, and there was something huge, ridiculous, and wonderful about the way he ended that fit with the character. By the way, both Deathlok and Coulson got a victory with Garrett.


Did you ever toss around the idea of killing Ward?

Bell: We love all our actors, so no one is ever casually killed—even Bill, who only came in for six episodes. It was very hard because we love him as an actor and we love the character. It's a big deal to do that. There were so many other ways to create pain, sorrow, and conflict. We love Dark Ward. We love the way Brett Dalton is embodying that character. There's more story for our characters by him being alive than if he had died. 

Loeb: The Winter Soldier has done things that are far more heinous than anything Grant Ward has ever done, as far as we know, and yet, at the end of the movie, you're rooting for him to come back on the side of the angels. There's a tradition in the Marvel Universe of our villains turning out to be heroes at the end of the day. Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch started out as villains and became Avengers on the publishing side. There's also the fun of sometimes your heroes team up with the villain to go after something that's even worse, so there's a lot of story left in Grant Ward, including the ongoing question, which is: Who is Grant Ward? The fact that we're having that conversation, though, is so fascinating to us, because Ward was certainly one of those characters that, at the beginning of the season, people never would've guessed this is where we were going to go. It's that kind of twist that we're going to continue to look for with all of our characters [in Season 2]. What is good? What is evil? What is evolution? Those are all really good questions about where we're going in the future.


Is there really no redemption when it comes to Ward?

Bell: One of the things that Dostoevsky talks about is that no character is too high to fall and no character is too low to be redeemed. Crime and Punishment began with a person going out and consciously becoming a cold-blooded murderer and it took 800 pages and an epilogue before the person finally asked for forgiveness. 

Loeb: If you can believe it, Dostoevsky was Hydra. 

Bell: You just spoiled Season 2. But that's the beauty of it. I really do believe that no one is too pious to fall or too far gone to be redeemed in some way. Jaime Lannister on Game of Thrones did terrible things, and now I feel so bad for him because his sister won't kiss him. Isn't that weird? Does she not love him? He lost a hand! It kills me that I care. We want to do that with Ward; we want him to kiss his sister, metaphorically speaking.


Coulson promised to torture Ward, so will you explore that fine line between justice and vengeance?

Bell: That's always the challenge. When does a hero become an anti-hero? What's too far, and what do you do in the name of right? Those are great story questions.


What came with the decision not to show Fitz when the team reunited in that final scene?

Loeb: So that we could have this conversation. [Laughs] We wanted to leave something there for the audience to speculate in terms of where we're going to go. The fun of what Jeff, Jed [Whedon], and Maurissa [Tancharoen] created in the season finale is that there are some things that are very neatly tied up and there are some things that are left open, so we'll start the next season with a bang and answer some questions and open more doors and windows.


Did you intend to insinuate that doctors may be trying to move heaven and earth to save Fitz?

Bell: Wow, you're paying attention! Awesome.


Let's talk about this mysterious figure who's apparently Skye's father. Is there something in the comics that would point to who this is?

Loeb: When everything is revealed, it will be a tremendous surprise, but at the same time, everyone will go, "Oh, that's the coolest thing ever."


Raina said there was a darkness in Skye. Will that be explored next season?

Bell: I would argue that Raina says a lot of things, but we all have darkness. We don't do anything causally. We're aware of what we're saying. How these things play out and what they mean hopefully are open to interpretation.


Is Skye's father next season's Big Bad?

Bell: That's another good question. 

Loeb: We'd love to have a next season order so we can actually tackle that question. [Editor's note: The show was renewed for a second season after this interview took place.]


You found a great way to keep Patton Oswalt on the show in some capacity after Eric was murdered. You say this is his "brother," but could this be your first hint at Life Model Decoys, and there are Koenigs in every secret bunker?

Loeb: All we can say is that Eric told us that he was playing Call of Duty with his brother and then we met his brother, and that's very exciting to us.


Will we see more of Deathlok on his path to redemption next season?

Bell: We love J, we loved Mike Peterson, so I hope we can find really fun and surprising ways to keep that character alive.


What lessons did you learn from the first season?  

Bell: People like Dark Ward. 

Loeb: It isn't so much the lessons as much as we get to continue telling stories that have momentum and urgency. We always had the plan, which was that we were building toward this unprecedented event of crossing into the major motion picture event, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and our show being irrevocably changed. What we may have learned is that our audience likes to be surprised and our audience likes when our characters are in real full-blown jeopardy. That certainly is something that will continue as we hop into a second season, as Clark Gregg leads Agent Phil Coulson into a world that has no formal S.H.I.E.L.D., Hydra out there and the great unknown. It's so exciting when we're on our own now.


What did you think of the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. finale? Do you have any theories on who Skye's father is? Hit the comments! 


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 5/17/2016

Season 3 : Episode 22

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I am a big Whedon fan so I was going to watch this show no matter what. I gave it a long leash expecting it to get more interesting and boy was I rewarded! It was like a different show after The Winter Soldier tie-in, and the finale really delivered.
It was classic Whedon. I loved the action as well as the clever writing which got several big laughs. I especially loved seeing Coulson reunited with his weapon from the Avengers and also finally going with a head shot to get rid of Garrett with the laser weapon. I was thrilled to see it renewed.
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"The Winter Soldier has done things that are far more heinous than anything Grant Ward has ever done, as far as we know, and yet, at the end of the movie, you're rooting for him to come back on the side of the angels."

That's a pretty dumb comparison. Winter Soldier was brainwashed and had his memory eraised. Ward wasn't. I get what they're trying to say but still.
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So pretty much Loeb and Bell didn't answer anything and didn't provide any new answers. Typical politician responses. They probably have no idea what is going down in season 2. Idiots
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Garrett is dead and should stay dead. I don't want him to return. As for Ward, I don't want to see him be redeemed after all the cold-blooded murders he has committed - it's unforgivable no matter what your excuse or reason is, and I don't think he can ever go back or be accepted by the team.
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So what's going to happen to Ward? Remember, this is a Joss Whedon show, and he loves to take characters to the depths of darkness and then return them to redemption.

(NOTE: Spoilers if you've never seen Buffy the Vampire Slayer.)

Take a look at what Whedon did with Angel in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Angel started off as sort-of good, the reverted to his evil Angelus persona in season 2, and actually killed Giles' girlfriend, and many other people, until he was finally sent to hell by Buffy.

But then he came back, and eventually became the hero of his own series.

Also, take a look at Spike. He too started as evil and was eventually transformed. But it isn't a one-way street. Willow started the series as a wallflower nerd, and by season 6 she had gotten so powerful and evil that she almost destroyed the world.

Given all this, I predict that Ward will go through a long journey back to being a good guy. Or not. One thing I have always appreciated about Joss Whedon is that he manages to do the unexpected with his characters.

When Agents of SHIELD first started, it didn't seem to be much like a Joss Whedon series, but it's definitely getting that groove about it lately, so where all the characters end up should be unpredictable, and given how much the series has improved, I looking forward to seeing what they do in season 2.
More+
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Ward and Winter Soldier are two different cases.

Ward was manipulated to become a bad guy but he had his sanity and conscience and memroy and he could back out anytime he wanted. While The Winter Soldier had his memory erased and was being brainwashed and tortured repeatedly. He had no influence over his own fate.
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"'Loeb: When everything is revealed, it will be a tremendous surprise, but at the same time, everyone will go, "Oh, that's the coolest thing ever."

Better be so!
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So where do these articles come from? Because TV Guide ran the same questions and answers.

http://www.tvguide.com/news/agents-shield-season2-spoilers-finale-recap-1081730.aspx

I understand they're probably stock questions/answers that the producers release to dozens of outlets. But when someone says "We got answers," it makes it sound like a personal interview conducted by the "We" in question.
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And its spearheaded by a reporter from TVGuide. Another in a set of articles that spawned recently, some with direct links to another website. So it's a weird cross-over that we're observing. TV.com no longer being happy with its own identity?
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you now what I like about this show ?

A.B.S.O.L.U.T.L.E.Y. N.O.T.H.I.N.G.
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You spent time watching 22 episodes that you considered "absolutely nothing"?

Given all the shows on Tuesday night, that seems an odd way to spend your evening. ;)
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the show is a bridge between various aspects of the overall story, which means I have no choice but to watch, but it would be marvelous [get it] if every episode was like the finale....
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How does what happen in the show play a substantive part in watching and enjoying the movies?
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Personally I loved the finale, with every show I follow rapping up for the season this finale was satisfying. It left me wanting more (MUCH MORE) but also closed the right doors. Finally having them all find out that Fury is in fact alive made me way happier than I thought I would be. I love Coulson having his new director position of his soon to be version of SHIELD but I would be happier if he was working hand in hand with Hill to rebuild it. It would seem more promising that way. I guess only time will tell of Coulsons full potential. May kicking the flageebers out of Ward is my second favorite scene next to Coulson zapping Garret.
CONS: Could they at least tell us that Fitz is okay?! So he might not ever be the same again?? I cant live with that. That was not okay to leave a mystery!
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The only way I want redeemed is after a very long path of major acts of serious contrition...and maybe May kicking in his teeth a few more times. And Garret just needs to stay gone.
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...only way I want Ward redeemed...

They need an edit function on this site!
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Yes! Edit button please!
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Redeem Ward? No he needs to be the head of Hydra. As for the man, I've got no clue. To be honest I'm not as knowledgible on Shield as I am other people in the Marvel Universe. I'm hopeful that Samuel Jackson and other Marvel actors from the film can occasionally cameo on this show. The possibilities are endless. Truthfully with the story arc that was The Winter Soldier now behnd them, the show can now start to blossom. Mae has an interesting back story that needs to be explored. How about utilizing the upcoming Avengers movie for next year. To be honest all the resources available to this show are unfair for it's competition. They could bury their competition.
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Ward doesn't have what it takes to lead Hydra. He's good at hand to hand, but he isn't smart enough, or powerful enough to take on Wolfgang Von Strucker. Not to mention, he doesn't believe in the Hydra ideals. Grant is a follower, not a leader.
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Winter Solider only did heinous things because he was brainwashed. Bucky Barns was one of the good guys and a war hero. Deathlok was forced to kill and kidnap. Ward's case is completely different - he was manipulated but in the end he made his own choices. They can redeem him but it's be a slow process. They could easily keep him around for information on Hydra though.
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At this point the SHIELD team would be absolutely fucktarded to do anything with Ward other than kick his teeth in, so if there is a redemption, it better be through death.
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I haven't read any of the comics, so I don't have any theories about Skye's father. I really hope Garrett is dead. He wasn't a very interesting villain, imo. Please don't bring him back to life!

I'm looking forward to next season. Can't wait to find out what's going on with Coulson, can't wait to find out what Skye is, and I can't wait to find out how Fitz is doing. Fitz better live!
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Don't bring back Garrett? Honey you must not have read Marvel comics as a kid. Everyone from Dr. Doom, The Green Goblin and Magneto has been resurrected in one way or another. That's part of the fun.
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Honey, I literally said I haven't read any of the comics in the very first sentence of my post.
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i hope ward doesnt get redeemed. he killed innocent people so if they redeem him after he saves one of the main team or something good, i hope they dont forget who he is: yes, he isnt really hydra, but he is a murderer and did those things with free will. I really hope they dont screw it up. label him a bad guy who has to live with his choices.
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Ward killed under orders. May and Coulson have also killed 'under orders' one could argue. Just like they said, "What's too far, and what do you do in the name of right? Those are great story questions... no one is too far gone to be redeemed in some way." Not that he'll ever be trusted again, but he may be an interesting wild card.
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you see coulson and may have killed under orders but im sure within the time we have seen them in each episode, they have never killed innocent people. ward straight out has killed so many cops, the agents on the plane while transporting garrett, killed that shield woman, etc. ward did not question the orders he was given and just killed. what about killing agent koenig in the secret facility. on the question of what do you do in the name of right? he did not question that. was it right to kill off the people he did? no.
ward did all the killing for garrett for what? just because he broke ward out of prison and taught him some jungle survival skills? what about having skye killed? sure he wasnt pleased about that but he didnt really leave garrett's side. to me it really is black or white when it comes to ward.
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Yes, there are 'good' guys, and 'bad' guys which is what makes up the comic book dynamic; and I'm not trying to argue what Ward did wasn't a betrayal, but there's more than a little similarity to the SHIELD agents and the covert Hydra. The larger message of insecurity and hidden political agendas is what makes the Hydra plotline so intriguing.
If you saw the movie (Capt America II), **spoilers** those themes are expanded in killing for the greater good (Hydra was willing to kill thousands, supposedly to save millions). Yes, Hydra was using SHIELD at the highest level to attain their devious plans, but agents within SHIELD were duped for 70 yrs or so into unwittingly carrying out some (not all) of Hydra's agenda. Does that make the good SHIELD agents 'bad' for following orders by covert Hydra agents? I think there's plenty of grey area to be explored.
Again, I'm not questioning that Coulson's team isn't 'good'- and Ward's actions even under orders wasn't 'bad', but to not see the similarities between them is overlooking an important message on the nature of humanity.
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Boring answers as show itself. I know they don't wanna reveal stuff,but writing is on the wall with their answers...you can expect same kind of cheesyiness and cliches as you got from 1st season.
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So I assume you won't watch it like you didn't watch this season.
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I just love when producers try to compare their show with something that has critical acclaim in order to elevate themselves. Let's just not get ahead of ourselves, shall we? I mean, A Song of Ice and Fire?? Dostoyevski??? I don't know, but at least to me, this is the first sign that people have become taking themselves too seriously.

Don't get me wrong, I believe Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is an entertaining show, but it's not really anything more than that. You have some decent actors (I like Clark Gregg increasingly more) and some decent episodes, but not too much more.

Regarding the story hooks - somehow I am not very enthusiastic about them. I get it that Marvel's comics often appear like a daytime soap, with characters suddenly not being dead or having some lost relatives. However, I think the show won't benefit from that approach, as it has the potential of a broader audience than Marvel fans. From what I read, I'd say they'd be lucky to get a third season, if they keep going the same way.
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Indeed, I rolled my eyes at that Dostoyevski reference. And slightly less so at that of GoT. It's almost as if the producers believed they'd achieved some great artistic value with the first season of their show. At least we know they are shooting high... But so far it's just what it is, an alright entertainment. They may have greater ambitions, yet talking about it doesn't make it so.
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Frankly, as a writer, I'm glad that TV producers read something other than coverage. The more you read the better you should become as a writer, producer and a human being. If a producer has a cultural reference that you find too high-falutin' then I don't think the problem is with the producer.
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Perhaps a better word would've been: a comparison. I'm all for high aspirations and smart cultural references. But I'm also going to take certain statements with a grain of salt if they seem out of place.
I'm fine with Bell's take, even if Ward has hardly been crafted as a character of intricate depth and notably conflicting emotions, but Loeb's "Dostoyevsky was Hydra" pitch... what?
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