The Agents of SHIELD make their way back to their present finally in “All The Comforts of Home.” The episode doesn’t actually start with them, but rather their opponent General Hale. She has a conversation with a young woman that most parents can probably relate to. I was thinking at the time I was having trouble imagining Hale as a parent. It’s a weird conversation as Hale and Ruby range from skipping class to debating who’s a good guy or not and where SHIELD stands in all of this. Hale is definitely not a fan of the former super-spy group.
Relieving one thing I was worried about, the very next scene shows us that they haven’t split the team up yet again, and everyone makes it back, appearing in the darkened Lighthouse. After a few moments of uncertainty, the team is sure they’re back to when they’re supposed to be. The facility has some automated functions that kick on when Fitz restores power, and they get offered a tour by General Stoner, the first Director of SHIELD in some versions of the comics. Simmons wants to give everyone a checkup, but they don’t have time for that. If nothing else, Daisy is starting to wake up, and she and Coulson have some unresolved issues from his bringing her back very much against her will. As that gets worked out, Fitz and May take a tour led by the holographic General Stoner, who proudly shows off cutting-edge tech… from 1980. Other surprises include Noah, a being much like Enoch, and a few very dangerous items being stored that are quite familiar to the SHIELD agents.
Noah takes them to a very elaborate monitor room, and Noah and May argue about the policy of monitoring but not interfering. If a Spock-like delivery and a steady flow of snark count as arguing, anyway. Noah rattles through a few things they are keeping an eye on, and gets off a beautiful line about how often SHIELD is mentioned, setting up May for, “We have a small but active fan base.” With the intensity of fans of the show and rumors swirling this may be the last season, it was a fun exchange. Aside from an Asgardian in the city (maybe a reference to Thor Ragnarok?), the item that gets their attention is a light from the sky that might be a sign from the Kree, kicking off the future they’re trying to prevent. Coulson mentions Hell on Earth and Mac mutters, “…and we’re back.” They just can’t catch a break, can they?
After some discussion, the team comes up with a way to get out of the Lighthouse and to a small town called River’s End. They need to stay low profile since they’re still wanted from everything that went down just before they took their unplanned trip. Simmons and Mack have very different takes on the concept of hidden tunnels. They end up in a perfectly normal town and find the best transport they can. Daisy stays behind out of fear of her supposed role in the future disaster. The team starts off on their road trip, swapping stories about their pasts. They have an interesting encounter with small town law enforcement and, after they leave, something happens that’s going to make things a lot more complicated for them.
After a scene dealing fairly humorously with the new development, the agents leave their new ride behind and try and deal with the beacon. First, they make a stop and retrieve their cloaked Zephyr, which makes May almost happy, or at least less cranky. Fitz figures out the light from above isn’t quite what they thought, and ties in to another old SHIELD case.
Mack and Yo-yo get a very touching scene in about what they went through from Kasius’ toying with them. Daisy gets made aware of the new development and is going to have to handle it on her own. The main team finally gets where they are going, and meet up with another old ally, much to everyone’s surprise. After a few other things go just the wrong way, General Hale gets an alert about SHIELD popping up.
While Daisy handles the new problem, the team has their issue under control. Or they would, if other things and people weren’t conspiring against them. There are betrayals, fights, surprises, and a tragic injury inflicted by a new mystery enemy. They also learn something strange about the team coming after them. The team mostly manages to get away, although they need some drastic medical help. Nothing is going well for anyone, really. The mystery attacker turns out to be connected to General Hale in a surprising way. The general herself goes to recruit some help in the coming fight, and the team has yet another issue with something in the Lighthouse.
What I liked: I’m glad the team is back, and that they all made it. I was worried they were going to split up Fitz and Simmons again. The team just talking with each other were some of the best scenes. The reveal about the attacker was clever and I didn’t see it coming. The new complication, while I still don’t understand how it happened, was amusing. Hale’s new recruit was an interesting choice.
What I didn’t: I hate what they did to seriously injure that one character. It was really disturbing on many levels. I don’t get why they replaced Enoch with Noah. I know Enoch blew up in the future, but that hasn’t happened yet. Literally. I was disappointed in the betrayal of the team.
It was a good episode and nice welcome back. I’ll give it a 3.5 out of 5.