“Past Life” is the last episode before the Agents of SHIELD take a roughly month-long break. With everything they’ve been through, they need it. But before they get there, a lot of moving pieces have to fall into place, and not everyone makes it to the hiatus. They serve up several cliffhangers before the end rolls around.
The Zephyr finally makes it to the Lighthouse, and Kasius and his troops are ready to storm the ship. It’s a lot less dramatic than he’d hoped, considering there doesn’t seem to be anyone home. An enraged Kasius bellows as the others find their way back to the Lighthouse to set their plan in motion.
Kasius rages as he stands over Sinara’s body, and begins making impossible demands of his staff. He also ends up doing some of the rebels’ work for them as his temper flares. Deke wants to make sure Kasius is killed, and Coulson’s response to that is, at best, noncommital. The good guys split into smaller and smaller groups to try and get everything done. Kasius decides to send all his remaining Inhumans out to stalk SHIELD, and takes some desperate measures with the Trainer.
Mac manages to confuse Flint about the difference between a bike and a motorcycle, and makes the young Inhuman an offer. Flint is plagued with doubts about everything being asked of him, which is fair when you remember he’s had his powers for something like an hour. Fitz and Simmons turn up and offer some help to Flint.
May and Deke manage to free some prisoners from the Kree. Deke is amazingly naive about guns, which is sort of amusing, especially with May’s sardonic commentary. The Trainer shows up and attacks, and he’s hell on wheels after what Kasius did to him. It’s a nasty fight and Daisy makes a fairly accurate crack about PCP in space. Tess and Deke get a happy reunion, and Deke babbles horribly during it. Coulson and Tess compare notes on being resurrected, and they go to work on evacuating the prisoners.
Kasius begins worrying his troops as his grip in reality seems to be slipping faster and faster. While he’s going around the bend, Yoyo scouts around and makes a really horrifying discovery. She has a very long conversation with the ghost of Agents’ past, and it’s a tragic exchange in part about whether or not time can be changed.
Enoch has been in hiding, but the Kree are finally closing in on him. Deke makes a surprising decision, and gets in a few snarky lines to Coulson and Daisy both. Fitz and Simmons are working with Flint to try and get their ride home put together. When some more Kree burst in, Fitz apparently channels his evil, Hydra/Framework self, setting off a trap that shocks Simmons.
While Yoyo’s tragic talk continues, Daisy makes a surprising but understandable decision. There are some surprise reveals about the near future of a few of the Agents, and Coulson does something that is going to affect his relationship with one of his team. Yoyo learns even more horrible things in her conversation and finally leaves.
Flint pulls off a really nasty trick to take out more Kree (how many are on this damn station? They’ve got to be running low on soldiers by now…). Enoch has some problems elsewhere while Mac and the others free some of Kasius’ servitors. Deke runs to Enoch’s rescue, and they find a few more problems with the bare bones of a plan to get the Agents home. Flint uses his power to finish an important part of their plan. Mac runs into Kasius and there are a series of shocks before Kasius does something really desperate and begins a major, ugly, brutal fight with Mac.
Deke proves he’s not a mechanical whiz, and yells at the device he’s trying to repair. He and Enoch finally come up with a way to make their end of the plan work, but it’s going to have a heavy price attached. There’s a rising of tension as the build up to the big trip home starts, but not everyone is where they need to be. In a nice switch, Mac gets saved by Simmons in a clever move. Mac then gets a welcomed but surprising reunion with someone he thought he lost. Among the major cliffhangers are we’re not sure A) if the team made it home or B) if everyone was there when the device was activated. If they split up Fitz and Simmons yet again, I swear I’m going to find some of those writers and slap them. The final scene is Tess and Flint talking about their future… which may be irrelevant if Coulson and company prevent all this from happening in the first place. We’re going to have to wait a while to find out.
What I liked: The banter is always great on this show, and Deke got in some really good lines this go around. The fights were really well done. Yoyo’s long talk was horrifying but really well done. It was nasty and vicious and likely going to cause problems in their relationship, but I liked Fitz’s trap.
What I didn’t: I really, really, really don’t want them to split up Fitz and Simmons again. They’re playing that note a little too often. I’m worried about what they seem to be building up to with Coulson and, on a slightly different front, Daisy. There’s a lot of time travel paradox in this episode and I’m really hoping we’re about done with that.
It was a really good episode. I’ll go a solid 4 out of 5 for this one, and it’s going to be a long wait to see what happens. Although not as long as some of them have been waiting…