The Framework was originally conceived by scientist Holden Radcliffe and his assistant Life Model Decoy AIDA to be a virtual paradise where the human consciousness can live on or enter and be free of their greatest pain and regret. However, it is now a nightmare scenario corrupted by AIDA in which HYDRA holds dominion in the United States and probably the world. So where are the Avengers?
The Avengers were basically formed through the machinations of Nick Fury, Phil Coulson and SHIELD. Unfortunately, several years prior, SHIELD was defeated and disbanded by HYDRA because of an event known as the Cambridge incident. Agent Melinda May, an early test subject for the Framework continues to harbor regrets over her mission in Bahrain years before where she was forced to kill an Inhuman child. The child was responsible for several murders because she underwent terrigenisis without undergoing a test for worthiness from the Inhuman group of Jia Ying, Daisy’s birth mother. In the Framework, that mission succeeded without May having to kill the child. The child however immigrated to the US and was placed in school where she killed dozens of people. The incident cast SHIELD in a bad light before managing to form the Avengers Initiative. Already infiltrated, HYDRA stepped out of the shadows and defeats SHIELD.
Phil Coulson’s greatest regret as revealed by his LMD was actually giving up a normal life by joining SHIELD. That was granted to him in the Framework, and Coulson was an integral part in the forming of the Avengers. Without his intervention, Tony Stark and Pepper Potts would probably have been killed off by Obadiah Stane and Stane neutralized by HYDRA later. Without Phil Coulson to lead the unit in New Mexico, events would have turned out differently, and Odinson wouldn’t have been able to regain Mjolnir and the power of Thor. Loki then rules Asgard unchallenged and events leading to him being found by Thanos never happened.
Nick Fury may have been killed earlier before he could plan the Avengers Initiative and events that led to the recovery of Steve Rogers would never have happened. The same goes for Agent Romanov who was tasked to find Bruce Banner in India so there’s no Hulk. Without Iron Man, Captain America and the Hulk, then, there’s no Avengers. The Hulk would simply be at large. Clint Barton and Agent Romanov are either killed or hunted fugitives.
Can Ward come back as an LMD
One unique thing they did with the Framework arc was to bring back Agent Ward. How he came to be is a mystery. He could be a product of Daisy’s entry into the Framework as one of her regrets that need correcting or as part of Fitz as he and Ward shared a bond. Or he can be just another random agent. Being random however, doesn’t account for his being a double agent. He could have been placed there by AIDA in a soon to be revealed plan.
Radcliffe even called Ward Hive since that’s how he knew Ward at the time when Hive forced him to turn ordinary humans into Inhumans. But Ward’s current personality is intriguing as he seems to be on the side of good this time around. He seems to show a genuine concern and even love for Skye and is on SHIELD’s side having the implicit trust of SHIELD leader Jeffrey Mace. Ward chose to join the resistance in order to shield Daisy from being discovered as a potential Inhuman.
So will ABC bring Ward back somehow after all this is over to shake things up for Daisy? Is Brett Dalton out of work that ABC decided to give him his old job back? I’ll have to admit that Ward’s character is more likable this time and Skyward fans probably agree. So how can he come back? The only possible option for him, since his body was blown up in space would be to come back as an LMD.
It would be interesting to have another powered SHIELD member who’s not an Inhuman like Quake and Yoyo. With LMD technology available, they can prepare a body for Ward and download him from the Framework as a reward for services rendered, as help against AIDA and her forces in the real world or as a general concern for his character who gets ‘killed’ once the Framework is shut off, which can’t be done without totally killing Radcliffe.
Will Fitz become a Villain?
Speaking of getting killed, Fitz killed Agnes Kitsworth, the human AIDA was modeled after. AIDA’s lie about Agnes replacing her may have factored into Fitz decision to kill Agnes outright. Fitz viewed Agnes as a threat to his apparent love for Ophelia or Madame Hydra. Fitz’s actions in the recent episode Identities and Change suggest his false memories do not account for Jemma Simmons being in his life in any way, though AIDA fears otherwise that an image of Jemma might snap Fitz out of her control.
Surprisingly, unlike Mace, Mack and Coulson, Fitz doesn’t seem to have any trace of morality in him and seems to relish his torture of Inhumans. He doesn’t have a problem torturing an old man and a beat-up Inhuman. Does the real Leopold Fitz harbor psychopathic tendencies? Or does he have a tendency to love to the extent of going overboard, that he’s willing to do anything to prove his love for Ophelia?
If it’s the former, then it complicates things for SHIELD in the future after they get out of the Framework. Why? Because things will get less interesting for FitzSimmons if they continue to be together. Their conflict is part of the dynamics that keep the show interesting, and it probably wouldn’t hurt to have Fitz go the villain route for one season. Being too brilliant can sometimes be a drawback as morality takes a backseat when people rely too much on logic.
In Marvel comics, when you pull the right strings, someone like Reed Richards could easily become a villain or a first class ass like what happened in the first Civil War when he created a clone of Thor that killed the hero Goliath resulting in Susan Richards separating herself from him. In Marvel Zombies, Reed became insane and considered zombification as the next step in human evolution and in the Ultimate Universe, he became a villain known as The Maker. It turns out that The Maker is a refugee from that destroyed universe out to make life miserable for Victor Von Doom, the Infamous Iron Man.
The problem with turning Fitz into a villain in a future season is that they’ll have to retire the character after his defeat. Redemption would be difficult for Fitz in case he has to murder again and if there are Skyward fans who recently got their wish, there are also FitzSimmons fans that want Fitz and Jemma to be together. Guess we’ll find out in due time what the showrunners and writers are really up to.
As we reported Thursday, Agents of SHIELD Season 5 is a done deal, so we’ve got plenty to look forward to!