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Warning: spoilers for last night’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode are ahead!
Betrayal is common on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but last night’s episode, “The Team,” was especially a figurative knife to the back. While rescuing her fellow S.H.I.E.L.D. agents from HYDRA with the Secret Warriors, Daisy Johnson, a.k.a. Quake, was corrupted by Hive’s parasites, turning her into one of his loyal subjects. She subsequently wreaked havoc on the S.H.I.E.L.D. base and fled to join Hive’s side. Her new allegiance will has certainly thrown the show’s status quo for a loop, but this development will also tie into Captain America: Civil War’s themes.
When asked if this development is leading towards a war between S.H.I.E.L.D. and Hive’s Inhumans, Chloe Bennett explained to EW how Daisy being turned and using her powers in dangerous ways factors into the concerns towards enhanced people in Captain America: Civil War. In her words:
There’s going to obviously be a struggle. There’s an aspect of it that was kind of exciting. We get to basically see how powerful Daisy has been and how much she’s been holding back. Without her moral compass working, her powers are so much more powerful than we even thought. You even see it with Malick; the way she kills him is so brutal and not something you’ve ever seen from her before. Moving forward, that will continue to happen. That really ties into the debate in Civil War. You see how an Inhuman in the wrong hands, or manipulated by the wrong person, is incredibly dangerous. You really see how much control Daisy has had up to this point of her powers. Then you see them unleash a little bit.
The Secret Warriors rescue operation seemed to have gone smoothly in the beginning of the episode, but it all went downhill when their prisoner, Gideon Malick, explained just how powerful Hive really is. Looking at HYDRA’s new head as a malevolent god, Malick told Phil Coulson about Hive’s ability to infect other Inhumans with his parasites and take control of them, which was confirmed during the autopsy of Lucio, a.k.a. the Inhuman who could paralyze people with his gaze. Coulson immediately tried to quarantine the Secret Warriors and figure out who had been turned, and after some initial difficulty when the Inhumans discovered what was happening, they were locked down.
Lincoln was originally believed to be the corrupted one, but we soon learned it was actually Daisy, who killed Malick in custody and planted the Kree device that she and Lincoln seized in the last episode in Lincoln’s locker. Before leaving, she took S.H.I.E.L.D.’s supply of Terrigen crystals and used her vibrational powers to damage the base so she couldn’t be followed. Now she’s on her way to Hive, and the team has to deal with one of their allies turning to the dark side, even if it wasn’t her choice.
Although Captain America: Civil War won’t feature any Inhumans or Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. characters, the idea of specially powered or enhanced people being regulated by the government is an idea that plays heavily into the series. With Daisy under Hive’s control, she’ll be using her abilities in dangerous ways, and while it’s likely she’ll eventually revert back to normal, her actions will serve as a reminder of what can happen when power rest in the wrong hands. The upcoming episode, “Emancipation,” will also see the S.H.I.E.L.D. team struggling with whether they should reveal their involvement with Inhumans following Captain America: Civil War’s events.
New episodes of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. air Tuesdays at 9 p.m. EST on ABC.