Spoilers ahead for the third episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7, called "Alien Commies from the Future!"
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. continued its adventures through time with "Alien Commies from the Future," which sent the heroes from 1931 (where they saved Hydra but lost Enoch) to Area 51 circa 1955. The Chronicoms' goal was to take out the brain trust of S.H.I.E.L.D. (including Agent Carter's Daniel Sousa) in the '50s and therefore prevent it from becoming an organization that could stop them by 2020, and the good guys had to get creative to save the past while also staying alive. In the process, S.H.I.E.L.D. seemingly debunked a theory that would have meant very big things for the final season.
All hands were on deck to stop the Chronicoms from detonating a device that would kill everybody within range and change the course of the future forever, and it fell to Simmons to turn a 1950s-era attempt at an EMP into a device powerful enough to knock out the device and the Chronicoms themselves. Such a strong electromagnetic pulse would short out anything electronic within range, which included Coulson. And, if the Season 7 theory had been correct, that would have also included Simmons. So what happened, and what's next?
Some S.H.I.E.L.D. fans, myself included, came to the conclusion after the first two episodes of Season 7 that something was fishy with Simmons that could easily be explained by a reveal that Simmons is an LMD. After all, S.H.I.E.L.D. revealed that Simmons had been gone for a "considerable" amount of time, with neither Simmons nor Enoch giving an exact number of years.
Simmons seemingly hasn't aged a day other than long enough to grow out her bangs, and she apparently had enough time to help invent time travel, design some medical technology that more or less resurrected May, and for Fitz to redesign the Zephyr to travel through time. She's not being very forthcoming and seemingly drops information on a need-to-know basis.
She has also been very businesslike, not visibly emotional, and surprisingly at peace with the separation from Fitz. It was enough that I was already dreading a reveal that Fitz and Simmons had lived their lives, grown old, and either died after replacing themselves with LMDs or designed a young Simmons LMD to help their pals stop the Chronicoms. This is FitzSimmons we're talking about, okay? Of course I assume something tragic has happened!
The theory that Simmons was an LMD or even a Chronicom stuck with me throughout almost the entire hour of "Alien Commies from the Future." She seemed almost too knowledgeable about history, had some questionable reactions (including an interesting expression when Coulson suggested trying to elicit emotional responses from the Chronicoms), and started rewiring the EMP like an engineer rather than a biochemist.
Sure, the rewiring could have just been that S.H.I.E.L.D. needed somebody to do it and only the biochem half of FitzSimmons was available, and Simmons has spent enough time with Fitz to have picked up some of his tricks, but until I saw her flip the EMP switch without any trepidation for herself or any sign to Daisy that she was going to short out, I was afraid we had Robo-Simmons on our hands.
But Simmons flipped that switch, and S.H.I.E.L.D. showed the lights blowing out, the Chronicoms melting as they self-destructed, and LMD Coulson shorting out and dropping like... well, like a robot that ran out of power. Admittedly, the episode didn't show Simmons immediately after the EMP activated to prove once and for all that she's human, but surely the episode would have ended on the reveal that Simmons shorted herself out with the EMP if that was something that happened!
Can I definitively, absolutely, 100% guarantee that Simmons' EMP proves she's not an LMD or a Chronicom of some sort? Sadly, I cannot, since S.H.I.E.L.D. didn't flash back to Simmons and Daisy after the EMP went off, and the trailer for the next episode doesn't show Simmons at all. Still, it sure seems like S.H.I.E.L.D. just debunked that theory! There are still big questions about Simmons, however, and hopefully answers will be forthcoming sooner rather than later.
Find out what happens next on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. with the next new episode, airing Wednesday, June 17 at 10 p.m. ET on ABC. If you need some non-superhero viewing options, don't forget to check out our 2020 summer premiere schedule!
Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.
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