The Law of Inferno Dynamics: Agents of SHIELD 408 Winter Finale Recap Review
It’s the Winter finale of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD, and we’ll again be left for weeks waiting for more. This episode was sweet enough to tide us over halfway and speculate on what happens next. It’s a bit sad though that this will be the last we’ll see of Ghost Rider, for now.
The episode starts with the Chinese gang reluctant to help Eli Morrow against SHIELD. Who wouldn’t? Eli kills a member who wants more money by making him cough up large diamonds to pay the rest of the gang while he continues to build some sort of large device. The scene transitions to Eli’s area of the city blockaded by SHIELD where a reporter suggests the unknown threat to be Quake while talking about it to Director Mace. Mace gives the reporter a vague blurb but clarifies that Daisy isn’t involved in the operation. Mace later discusses the operation with Coulson and May about how to proceed using Yoyo, Daisy and Robbie as shown in the trailer. They also talk about AIDA and Coulson tells Mace the truth wherein Mace reminds Coulson what happened with Ultron. Mace eventually agrees with using AIDA and tells May to pick her up.
We next go to Robbie and Mac getting ready for the operation, and the two of them seem to have gotten close. Fitz and Simmons meanwhile are in the Zephyr discussing the laws of thermodynamics and how Eli is somehow violating them. They also tell the rest of the team about suspicious small tremors in the area. Robbie, Daisy and Yoyo prepare to enter Eli’s hideout. Yoyo goes to recon the entrance but is met by a fiery trap resulting from the reaction of splashed water to cesium lining the walls. She barely gets out but is okay. Immune to fire, Robbie enters the building himself.
Meanwhile, Mace talks to Radcliffe about AIDA and how she managed to create the dimensional gateway. Mace shows Radcliffe a footage of AIDA reading from the Darkhold which mean that Mace is aware of the book. That knowledge is temporarily set aside as Mace tells Radcliffe of AIDA’s mission. The next scene shows Mack being worried about Yoyo, but Yoyo shrugs it off. We then see Robbie engage Eli’s thugs until he comes upon Eli’s creation which Simmons describes as a larger version of the quantum boxes. Robbie enters the box but experiences pain. Fitz has a suspicion on what Eli built. Eli confronts Robbie and finds out that he’s the Ghost Rider. Before Robbie can transform, Eli impales him with a carbon spike, but Robbie doesn’t die. A large tremor occurs as Daisy prepares to help. She clarifies it wasn’t her. Simmons then tells the others that Eli created a nuclear device which is either a fail-safe or a fuel source.
In the next scene, Eli and Robbie talk about the events that led to Robbie becoming Ghost Rider and why Eli is responsible. Eli explains that his quest for power is a quest for respect, that despite his own talents and brilliance, everyone around him played the race card and views him and his accomplishments with condescension. Robbie again tries to transform, but another spike impales him.
AIDA, Radcliffe and Mace arrive in the Zephyr and discuss the mission. Mace intends to join it to which Coulson shows some skepticism. Fitz confirms that Daisy is not responsible for the quakes after checking her gauntlets. Fitz and Simmons tells Daisy about their unpleasant experiences with Mace while Mack disagrees with Mace’s plan to send Yoyo to grab the plutonium. And while Fitz and Simmons talk to Daisy, Fitz realizes what’s causing the quakes.
Coulson and Mace get candid with each other about their respective secrets. Mace confronts Coulson about Daisy, Robbie and AIDA and Coulson counters with Mace’s deal with Senator Nadeer. Mace explains that Nadeer blackmailed him into helping with the gestating Inhuman she’s been keeping in exchange for her being quiet about Daisy and Robbie’s involvement in the prison mission. Coulson and Daisy begin to understand but asks Mace why he didn’t tell them. Mace lets out his sentiment that the team doesn’t really trust each other despite his motto. They then decide to become one in order to save LA.
Eli is pleased to be able to create water, a step closer to his wish of becoming a god and create lifeforms of his own. Coulson lets himself get captured bringing only a chain, so he can confront Eli. Meanwhile, the rest of the team set up the dimensional arch directly below. Daisy uses her powers to dampen the effects of the quake after discovering earlier that she can feel their arrival. Coulson meanwhile plays at Eli’s sentiments about what he’s doing to Robbie. Robbie, growing weaker from his impalement hints that he’s dying, akin to being pulled back to the other place. Eli asks about that place, and Coulson explains how he’s been stealing or taking quantum energy from that dimension in order to create matter, resulting in dimensional rifts that’s causing the earthquakes.
Daisy and team continue their work as Coulson pleads with Eli to stop. Eli reveals that he actually plans to detonate the plutonium bomb in a mad attempt to recreate life afterwards. Coulson then tells Robbie to get out of the box and for the rest of the team to go as planned. Mace, in combat gear along with the others deal with Morrow’s henchmen while Yoyo tags Eli with a component taken from the Watchdogs’ power dampening device. Eli gets thrown into the box with Robbie as he turns into Ghost Rider.
The team below are met with two henchmen who try to shoot them. AIDA takes the bullets and goes down. Fitz and Simmons dispatch the bad guys. Eli tries to take the device off him, and Coulson throws the chain to Ghost Rider to help him get out of the box. Eli manages to get the device off him, but Ghost Rider grabs him and lets go of the chain. The portal is activated, and Eli, Robbie and the box are transported to another dimension. The team is left with the seeming loss of Robbie Reyes.
Below, AIDA is functional but experiences pain from the wounds. She’s programmed to feel pain in order to make her being a human look authentic. Daisy goes outside in order to release the seismic energy she absorbed. She flies off and lands in the middle of the crowd and media outside. Before she answers the questions thrown at her, Mace explains that she’s been an agent of SHIELD all along on an undercover mission and also in effect, reintegrates her with the agency.
We next see Daisy in the Zephyr with Robbie’s car, saying that it belongs to Gabe. But Coulson tells her Robbie could return from where he is just like a previous Ghost Rider did, meaning he somehow knows the existence of a previous Ghost Rider. Daisy then tells Coulson that she’s okay going back to the team. Meanwhile, Mack confirms his relationship with Yoyo with a kiss and joins everyone else in the common room to celebrate.
Mace makes Radcliffe’s work with AIDA official, but all the materials are to be brought to SHIELD so he can work with full supervision. Mace sent his assistant to pick up Radcliffe’s work. The agent discovers an unconscious Agent May, and he is killed by AIDA. AIDA tends to agent May while a fake Agent May toasts with Coulson as part of their celebration.
So this episode basically caps the show’s Ghost Rider arc and paves the way for the secondary arc which is AIDA. We’re pretty sure Ghost Rider will be back as in a previous article we discussed that talks are underway for a Ghost Rider spinoff. Coulson’s statement about the possibility of Robbie’s escape from the quantum dimension basically confirms Robbie’s return to SHIELD or to his own solo series. Another inevitable development is Daisy’s return to the team. She can’t exactly remain solo to full season now can she? Plus Mack and Yoyo are now officially a thing which complicates things for both characters especially for Mack who still has to find whoever it was in his photo in the previous episode. It would also be interesting on how Daisy and the team will continue to work under Jeffrey “The Patriot” Mace. Can he really be trusted? There’s half a season more to find out.
Lastly, there’s AIDA, another failed experiment on artificial intelligence. Will she be another Ultron? Perhaps, but she’s more subtle about it plus, whatever she read in the Darkhold apart from creating the dimensional arch will come into play in later episodes. What happens to May and will she replace any more members? Also unlike Ultron who was powered by the Mind gem, AIDA is powered by something more insidious. Even through AIDA, SHIELD’s conflict with the supernatural is far from over.