Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD Season 3, Episode 9 Recap And Review – “Closure”


With National Novel Writing Month finally said and done, it’s freeing to be able to work on an Agents of SHIELD recap and not have to think about words per day. The real question is: Did I have to dust off my #NoWardRedemptionArc once more?

Not-So-Short Summary: We open on Coulson and Rosalind on a cute little date, apparently made up after their tiff two weeks ago, though it still feels a little awkward. Coulson says his team discovered that Malick has taken all of the Inhumans the ATCU has collected and smuggled them away.

Until there’s a sniper shot from blocks away by Grant Ward. It hits Rosalind in the neck and she bleeds out. Ward taunts Coulson with a phone call, then sends in hired goons to try to take Coulson out. He jumps out a two-story window to escape and I half-expect Jessica Jones or Luke Cage to be loitering outside.

Coulson is out for Ward’s blood. He wants everyone to give their deepest, darkest secrets about Ward to find and exploit a weakness they may have missed. It comes down to Skye/Daisy and how she fell for him; she understood his motivations because she knew where he came from. She says that he feels too much.

It turns out Coulson has a way to track down Ward, with the help of Bobbi and Hunter. He leaves Mack as acting Director in his absence.

Banks is on the scene at SHIELD HQ to give insight on Distant Star Pathfinder. He says that when he and Rosalind started out with Malick back in 2001, an independent contractor took care of the details, which was funded by Malick. He and FitzSimmons head to the abandoned HQ to see if they find anything. Unfortunately, that telekinetic Inhuman is waiting in the wings to take FitzSimmons to Malick.

They split up Fitz and Simmons. Telekinetic man is tasked with torturing Simmons while Fitz has to listen to Simmons screaming… while Ward taunts him with that.

Coulson and Hunter rob a jewelry store, which is very Butch and Sundance, to get to an employee in the back. Which turns out to be–dun dun dunnnnn–the missing Ward brother Thomas! Coulson gives Ward a call, which turns into a video chat, taunting him with Thomas.

“You better finish him off when you do,” Thomas tells them. He does confirm that they had a messed up childhood, that Christian was years older and didn’t hang out with them, and that he and Ward were best friends.

After a heated phone call between brothers, Coulson announces he’s coming for him, and Hydra is sending another person through the portal. It’s Fitz. He’s volunteered as tribute so Simmons doesn’t have to go again.

Malick takes Ward to the side and says that he wants Ward to lead the men on the other side. But Ward wants to stand over Coulson’s dead body. Except Malick gives a very convincing speech about the thing on the other side being everything they’ve ever wanted.

The portal opens and Fitz and Ward jump in last. Up in the sky, Coulson jumps for it like Captain America, straight into the portal like a freaking badass!

Post-Credits Stinger: On the other planet, everyone wanders around like they know what they’re doing, blinded by the wind and sand. Off in the distance, Coulson tumbles down a hill and smashes his head against a rock, knocking himself out. If there’s any blood drawn, that doesn’t bode well.

Badass Moment of the Week: Coulson skydiving out of the Quinjet directly into the portal. Seriously, holy crap, Captain America would be proud.

Best One-Liner: “I gotta say, I am impressed with this whole Furiosa vibe you have going on,” Ward says to Simmons. Apparently he had the chance to go see Mad Max: Fury Road this year.

Mack as temporary Director is all sorts of fantastic. I don’t really know what else there is to say about it. If Coulson ever dies–again–or doesn’t return from the mystery planet, I would be okay with Mack running the show and May as his right-hand man.

In case it matters for future reference: Malick has five stones extracted from the Monolith. They are the key to everything Hydra’s been marching towards since its conception thousands of years ago, or so he says. If they bring back the thing on the other side we’ll see what he says then.

Have we ever seen Coulson this unhinged? If so, it has been a very long time and it’s almost terrifying. Part of me wonders where our calm, level-headed SHIELD agent who dealt with superheroes on a yearly-basis went. But then I remember everything Agents of SHIELD has put him through and remember he’s not the same.

When Banks was turning the gun on FitzSimmons, was it only me that half-anticipated Kilgrave from Jessica Jones to be off in the shadows? Though I don’t know what he would have gained from any of this.

Next: Agents of SHIELD: Season 3, Episode 8 Recap: Many Heads, One Tale

Next week is the winter finale for Agents of SHIELD, and it looks like the crap is going to hit the fan, just like last season’s winter finale with Triplett dying and Inhumans coming to the surface. I’m still waiting for Ward to become an Inhuman.