There's Good & Bad News About 'S.H.I.E.L.D.'s May

by Rosie Narasaki

There were a few key people missing from the rollicking Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 premiere — chief of which were Agents Jemma Simmons and Melinda May. I think we were all expecting Simmons' absence, what with that whole run-in with the Kree monolith, but May's came as a bit more of a surprise. After all, just because we saw her packing a red bikini in preparation for a vacation with dreamy ex-husband Dr. Andrew Garner (aka Blair Underwood), didn't mean she was gone for good, right? Well, as fate would have it, it would seem that Agent May enjoyed her much-needed vacation a little too much... so much, in fact, that she was rather conspicuously absent from the splintered S.H.I.E.L.D. team in which she's long been a mainstay. So, here's the million-dollar question — will Agent May return to S.H.I.E.L.D.? And if so, when?

Luckily for us, it would seem that Agent May's absence is of the temporary variety — after all, actor Ming-Na Wen is still listed as a series regular, and was still included in all the promotion for the new season. Plus, the summary for this week's episode,"Purpose in the Machine," implies that May will be returning to the team. It states, "Agent May is at a crossroads in her personal and professional life," and when it comes to those two lives, I think we all know which May would choose, nine times out of 10.

Wen has also implied as much, and she knows more than anyone else just the level of self-sacrifice May is willing to commit. In an interview with Marvel.com, she had some wise words about her character's love life. When asked about May's relationship with Garner, Wen said "I think they still have a lot of love for each other — that, in a weird way, keeps them apart, more than it keeps them together."

Therein may lie our answer, because based on that response, it looks like May and Garner will be remaining apart, as opposed to together. Which is sad for the couple, sure, but at least it means that our favorite pilot will soon again be crushing it alongside Coulson, right? That said, it won't all be wine and roses.

Wen also mentioned the fact that S.H.I.E.L.D.'s recent shifts (including Coulson "bringing the Inhumans into the fold") gives May some serious pause, so even if she does return to the team, we can definitely expect some turbulence. But let's face it, we wouldn't want May back any other way.

Images: ABC; Giphy