Is Raina Naja On 'Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.'? A New Teaser Poster May Give Some Clues
Can you believe that after a nearly four-month hiatus, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is officially back in business? Sure, Agent Carter basically blew everyone out of the water, but there's still no denying the fact that S.H.I.E.L.D. left us hanging in a major way: I mean, there's Ward and Agent 33, Skye and her newfound superpowers (not to mention the newfound identity and newfound father), and the whole Mack and Bobbi situation. But the biggest mystery of all going into Season 2B of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is what Raina became after being exposed to the Terrigen mist. After all, we know next to nothing about her: No name, no backstory, no nothing. Just a spare glimpse at a creepy yellow eye, and what appear to be spines on her face.
Until recently, that is. On Friday, ABC teased us even further with a brief glimpse of what's to come for everyone's favorite morally gray, floral dress-wearer. Like last year, AOS is doing a series of episode posters created by various comic book artists, and the first of the series (gorgeously illustrated by Gabriele Dell’Otto) happened to feature a peek at post-Terrigen mist Raina... and the results are scarier than you might expect.
I was expecting something drastic, but not to the point of Voldemort-style no nose and honest-to-god monster hands! Of course, it's important to remember that this episode art should be taken with a grain of salt — in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producer Jeff Bell was quick to point out that, "It’s representative, and it’s his interpretation of certain things, and I think certain things here are quite different than how she’ll look. But I think it’s also hinting at the transformation."
So, it's not the end-all, be-all here — it might not be exactly what we're going to be dealing with in the premiere, but there are still certain things we can wring out of it, right? Before the new image hit the stands, most of the Raina theories were cat-based (one of the most popular was the Tigra theory). After all, there was a very feline look to that eye, no?
The new art, on the other hand, gives her a much more reptilian feel, which would likely point to either dinosaur-like Raina (which would be a facepalm-worthy reveal if ever there was one) or possibly the similarly reptilian Naja. Marvel Comics' Raina is classified as a saurid (a bipedal amphibian species) and possesses superhuman strength, speed, durability, and stamina — oh, and there's the fact that she's known to have claws and fangs. Now, Naja, on the other hand, is a nuhuman (which is actually quite similar to an inhuman), who's blessed with the powers of invisibility and flight.
Appearance-wise, out of all the theories I've seen so far, Raina actually looks the closest to Naja (though really, at this point, it's anyone's game. Scary scales and claws or no, Raina could still turn out to be inhuman princess Luna Maximoff).
That said, no matter who Raina ends up being, I have a feeling she's going to go full villain on us. She's always been on the iffy side of morality, and even showrunner Maurissa Tancharoen agrees, going from vain to monstrous has to take a toll on a person.