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Warning: major spoilers ahead for Episode 5 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 5, called "Rewind." If you haven't had the chance to watch yet, you may want to check out some of our non-spoilery articles until you can catch the episode.
Season 5 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. kicked off back in the beginning of December with the majority of the characters mysteriously transported into outer space and more than 70 years in the future. There was one notable absence, however, as Fitz was nowhere to be seen. For the first few episodes of the season, all we had to go on with regard to Fitz was a message that he was "working on it" and a mention in the premiere that he wasn't "on the list" of people to be taken into space. He finally (and inexplicably) turned up in the final moments of last week's episode. Now, "Rewind" finally revealed what exactly happened to him after that killer Season 4 cliffhanger.
As it turns out, Fitz simply blinked back into consciousness after the end of the Season 4 cliffhanger and was shocked to discover that all his friends had mysteriously disappeared. Before he could even begin to figure out what had happened, the authorities barged in to arrest him for all the craziness that resulted from the L.M.D. project and A.I.D.A. The military folks wanted the entire group in custody, and they didn't believe Fitz when he tried to explain that he had no idea what happened. Somehow, all the surveillance cameras blinked out of service for two minutes, during which the agents other than Fitz disappeared.
Anxious to find out what happened to his friends, Fitz agreed to help the military track them down, simply demanding pens, paper, books, and a TV for watching soccer. For a span of six months, Fitz's life consisted of reading, theorizing, working out, and watching soccer. His only contact to the world outside of the military base was letters written to a soccer fan magazine. It was ultimately revealed that the letters were Fitz's way of contacting Hunter for for help, and Hunter eventually turned up to bust Fitz from custody.
The dynamic duo began investigating to figure out what happened to everybody in the diner, and their investigations led them to the home of Enoch, who just so happens to be a 30,000-year-old sentient being from the Cygnus constellation. Although he was sent to Earth to observe and record the evolution of humans, he began interfering with humanity when he came across a "seer" who could predict an extinction-level event. According to the seer -- who is none other than the little girl named Robin from Season 3 who has become an Inhuman -- Coulson, May, Daisy, Jemma, Mack, and Elena were needed on the Lighthouse in the year 2091, but Fitz wasn't part of the prophecy.
Robin did ultimately reveal why Fitz wasn't part of the prophecy to make the initial journey to the Lighthouse: Fitz had to go there in a different way in order to save them all. Enoch had come to Earth in a pod that he claimed could take Fitz to his friends in the future, which meant that Fitz and Hunter had to infiltrate and rob the base from which Fitz had only just escaped. Luckily, with the help of a lot of luck and a couple of ferrets, the two discovered the pod and a ship filled with all the material that had been confiscated from S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters. They simply flew the craft away, now in possession of a whole lot of supplies and the pod.
As it turns out, the pod was not actually a time machine that could take Fitz to the future and his friends. Instead, it was a cryo-freeze chamber. Fitz intended to freeze himself for the next 74 years, then wake up in time to help his friends. He stashed some weapons in the wall of the still-intact Lighthouse, to be retrieved once he made it inside in 2091. Mack's shotgun-axe is one of the weapons, which means that Mack should be doubly glad to see Fitz.
Fitz froze himself, and Enoch went with him into space with the promise to wake him when the time is right. Fortunately for him, Enoch kept himself busy over his seven decades alone to create a plan for how Fitz can infiltrate the Lighthouse, where he will apparently face some of the most ruthless and brutal "mobsters, monsters, and mercenaries in the galaxy." This plan should explain how Fitz gets into the position he was in when he turned up at the end of the previous episode.
All things considered, it's looking like Fitz could indeed be the key to saving the day on the Lighthouse in 2091. At the very least, he'll be able to deliver some very necessary supplies. Hopefully he'll also be able to help Jemma get the deafening device out of her ear and escape the Kree. This wasn't exactly the happiest episode of S.H.I.E.L.D. to date as Fitz was forced to go through a fresh hell -- seriously, I'm starting to think there's something to his theory of a curse -- but Hunter's presence added some humor, even without Bobbi around.
Those two were always fun together, and they even got to reenact a classic scene from the Star Wars saga together before going their separate ways, although probably not the scene many of us would have guessed. As Fitz was about to be cryo-frozen, Hunter said "I love you." Fitz's answer was, in true Empire Strikes Back-era Han Solo style, simply "I know." Aww.
Unfortunately, we'll have to wait a little bit to find out what happens next. "Rewind" was the fall finale of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. The good news is that the hiatus won't be too long, as the show will return on Friday, January 5 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC. For the dates when your other favorite shows will be back on the airwaves in the new year, take a look at our midseason TV premiere schedule and our 2018 Netflix premiere guide. Our rundown of 2017 cancellations can fill you in on the many shows that didn't score any renewals and have come to their ends.