tek's rating: ½

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., on ABC
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Caution: spoilers!

Season Six
Okay, I guess the first thing I need to say is that last season, Fitz died. That is, the Fitz who had been cryogenically frozen and sent into space by Enoch, to be reawakened in the future that his friends had been transported to via monolith, and later returned with them to the present, died. But, since the team had managed to alter the timeline in the present, the future no longer needed saving, thus the original Fitz was still out in space somewhere. So, part of the team (Simmons, Daisy, Piper, and Davis) took the Zephyr out to look for him. This season picks up one year later, and they still haven't found him. However, they do finally find the remains of the ship he had been on, which had been destroyed by the Confederacy, I guess. Investigating the wreckage, they find the cryopod Fitz had been in, but it was empty. Everyone else wants to return to Earth, but Simmons forces them to make a jump to the planet where the cryopod had been made.

Meanwhile, back on Earth, Mack has spent the past year rebuilding SHIELD. But he had broken up with Yo-Yo, believing he needed to be more focused and objective, as SHIELD's new director. And now Yo-Yo is in a relationship with an agent named Damon Keller. Also, Mack recruits a scientist named Dr. Marcus Benson (Barry Shabaka Henley) to work for SHIELD. They need all the help they can get, figuring out the latest mystery the team will have to deal with. There's a group of people who can travel through portals of some kind, and... do bad stuff. We eventually learn that the leader of this group, a man called "Sarge," looks just like Phil Coulson (and is even an exact genetic match). But he's pretty clearly not Coulson (who died between seasons). His team includes a couple of guys named Jaco and Pax, and a woman called Snowflake. (She can be kind of badass when she needs to be, but most of the time she seems to have a personality somewhere between hippie and psychopath. I really liked her.)

Okay... I'm really not sure how many more specifics I want to divulge. I do have to mention that Fitz and Enoch have been traveling together for awhile, and Enoch has come to think of Fitz as his best friend. But they seem to get themselves into a lot of scrapes from which they barely escape. Meanwhile, Simmons and the others continue to look for Fitz, and have their own share of weird adventures. We also learn that Sarge's team has been traveling to different worlds for a very long time, trying to prevent each world from being destroyed by bat-like creatures called Shrike, and Earth is the most recent world to face this threat. (At one point, a Shrike kills Agent Keller.) So, Sarge's team are sort of good guys, but they're not good at sharing information, nor at playing by any particular rules of conduct; they'll do whatever they need to, to get the job done, even if it means hurting or killing any number of people. So of course, while it would be in both parties' best interests, it takes a long time before Sarge's group and SHIELD stop being enemies and start tentatively trying to work together. Meanwhile, one of the worlds that had been destroyed by the Shrike was the homeworld of Chronicoms like Enoch. So now the surviving Chronicoms want to take over another world to remake as their own. And their sights seem to be set on Earth. Since Enoch is against that plan, he becomes a fugitive from his own people.

Eventually, Fitz and Simmons are reunited, but captured by Chronicoms, while their friends return to Earth on the Zephyr. There's a totally awesome episode in which Fitz and Simmons have to work out some of their pent up feelings of... well, all sorts of unpleasant things. Oh, and on top of everything, Fitz has a lot of trouble adjusting to the revelation that another version of himself had died... and that he had been married to Simmons. Anyway, Enoch eventually rescues them and teleports them away... back to a gambling world where they'd been before. This allows for a guest appearance by Anthony Michael Hall, who puts Fitz and Simmons in a deadly predicament... from which they are rescued by a mysterious woman named Izel. And she plans to take them back to Earth. But... she turns out to be the season's main villain (she controls the Shrike), and she shares a past with Sarge, who really wants to kill her. Meanwhile... I haven't even mentioned Deke! He's now rich, having started a tech company (with technology stolen from SHIELD, as well as some alien tech). He has a girlfriend named Sequoia (played by Maurissa Tancharoen, who is one of Agents of SHIELD's showrunners). But that relationship ends pretty soon after Deke is reintroduced to the show, and ends up rejoining SHIELD. Anyway... he desperately wants to win the approval of his grandfather, Fitz... who of course has no memory of him from the future, since this version of Fitz never got there, and having to deal with the revelation that he has an adult grandson in the present who hasn't even been conceived yet is just one more thing to drive him crazy.

Um... so, there were three monoliths, I guess. Each one had a different power. I never managed to keep track of anything about them, throughout this series, but I guess all three had been destroyed, by this point. And they are what Izel has been looking for. (She calls them Di'Allas.) She wants to recreate them and combine their powers, for a horrible purpose that I don't want to spoil. And there's something else about Izel that I don't want to spoil, but I thought it was pretty cool (and also horrifying). And... I'm sure I've said a lot of things out of order. And a lot more stuff happens throughout the season that I don't want to spoil, but it's all immensely dramatic. And we do finally learn why Sarge looks like Coulson. I will say Izel is eventually defeated, but... there's a major twist ending, which I'll have to reveal next season. Meanwhile, I also need to mention that it's completely unclear where anything that happens this season fits in with the events of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, particularly the Avengers movies "Infinity War" and "Endgame." Which is kind of fine by me, because I am way behind on watching MCU movies. I really hope to catch up on those before season 7 starts... but then again, it may not even matter. It's possible this show moved into an alternate universe when SHIELD changed the timeline in season 5. I guess time will tell. (Hopefully.)


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