There Must Be More To "Death" On 'S.H.I.E.L.D.'

Last week, we finally found out where the Kree portal sent Simmons on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. "4,722 Hours" deftly explained (in a standard hour of television, no less) exactly what she'd been up to for the past six months, covering everything from her first meal (and subsequent satisfying belch), to the fact that she just so happened to start a romance with a shipwrecked astronaut named Will Daniels. But most importantly, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. introduced "Death," the mysterious figure threatening Will and Jemma's survival.

Love story aside (sorry, FitzSimmons 'shippers, this one's gonna hurt), the bulk of the episode saw Simmons and Will get thwarted by a mysterious hooded figure. Simmons only saw it twice (both times, it should be noted, in different forms), but Will had been dealing with the thing for years. "Death," as Will refers to it, had systematically picked off his crew, by "getting inside [their] heads."

His fear of the alien creature loomed large throughout the episode, leaving us to wonder just what Will and Jemma were up against — whatever it was, it seemed mighty sophisticated and powerful, demonstrating everything from weather manipulation, to shapeshifting, to mind control. So, what exactly is this thing? Let's review our options.

A Kree

Well, the portal is of Kree origin, after all, so it would logically follow that there's some kind of Kree presence on the other side. Besides, one of the first things we learned about the monolith was that it was designed as something to wipe out Inhumans — it would actually make sense if there was a Kree stationed on the planet to systematically destroy any infiltrators/potential Inhumans.

An Inhuman

Similarly, given the Inhuman connection (remember how badly Jiaying wanted to get ahold of the thing?), it definitely stands to reason that some Inhumans have traveled through the portal, accidentally or otherwise. Could it be that one of them has been stuck over there for centuries, and gone rogue? The planet's mysterious cloaked figure could be an Inhuman vigilante, not unlike Lash. After all, Inhuman-like abilities could definitely explain "Death's" possible powers of shapeshifting and mind control.

A Skrull

As long as we're talking Kree and Inhumans, it's worth bringing up the Skrulls. As an enemy of the Kree, it stands to reason that they'll show up on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. eventually. Plus, they have the ability to shapeshift, which goes along rather nicely with what we know about Will and Simmons' enigmatic adversary.

A Dire Wraith

I'd never heard of Dire Wraiths before, but Comic Book Resources made a pretty strong case for them possibly being Will and Simmons' co-inhabitants on that sunless alien planet. They're a subset of Skrulls known for their shapeshifting ability, and they can turn into amorphous cloud-like shapes... oh, and they turn into dust when they die. Sound familiar?


Now, I'm not too sold on this theory, but it's worth bringing up, especially since Will and Simmons discussed it (sarcasatically, but still). Will made it very clear that "Death" was very adept at shapeshifting and trickery — heck, he even imprisoned Simmons because he was afraid she was yet another manifestation of it, so we know that whatever it is, it's very manipulative.

Assuming Will was real, though, there could have been some switching going on. Maybe part of the time Simmons was actually with Will, while sometimes she was with an impostor. I'm inclined to believe Will (and their relationship) was real, but if there's one thing "4,722 Hours" made abundantly clear, it's that whatever they were dealing with was quite the crafty adversary — and is capable of just about anything.

Images: Tyler Golden, Eric McCandless, Screengrab/ABC