We're out of the 1940s and back to Team Inhumans on ABC. Coulson and Skye are back, and already in over their heads. Is there a traitor in the midst of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? Ward's secret identity as a Hydra operative came as a surprise last season, but this next twist may be a little bit more of a calculated slow burn. Take a look at the official ABC press release for "Aftershocks," the midseason premiere of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Bobbi and Mack begin the next phase of a plan which seems to have grave repercussions for Coulson and his team, who are unaware that there’s another mysterious force moving against them. And as Hunter is forced to make the biggest choice of his life, Coulson will find his mission threatened by this shocking endgame.
That's pretty forthcoming of ABC, so there must be more to it. The press release for the March 10 episode reports that Bobbi and Mack will still be hiding their plan. What is their secret agenda and why do they need Lance Hunter? If you recall, the three of them all joined Director Coulson's team individually. Mack was brought on as a temporary engineering replacement during Fitz's recovery. Lance Hunter was a mercenary working with a former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent and hung around after his coworkers were killed by Carl "Crusher" Creel, the Absorbing Man. Finally, Bobbi "Mockingbird" Morse was working undercover at Hydra with Simmons and helped extract her when Raina threatened to expose their loyalty. I love a long con, so if the three of them have been planning to team up all along, color me impressed!
We've seen hints of this before. Just before the midseason break, Mack ominously asked Bobbi if she had told Lance about something, and she said that he must never find out. I thought the two of them had hooked up, but is Bobbi ashamed of this new plan? And is Lance Hunter involved or not? Is he going to betray Coulson in another way? The relationship between Bobbi Morse and Lance Hunter really breathed life into the first half of the season while the team was still dealing with Ward's betrayal and Fitz's injuries. I'm excited to see where they push this relationship next.
Also, what is this other "mysterious force"? The team already has the U.S. Government, Hydra, and potentially some Kree and/or Inhuman action that has been awakened by Skye and Raina's transformation. I know I'm still jazzed about the first season of Agent Carter and what a fun ride that was, but could Mack and Bobbi be Leviathan, the Russian bad guys from the ABC prequel series? It would be a huge change to her comic book origin story, but Bobbi does have a similar fighting style to Black Widow and Dottie Underwood. We haven't really had any triple agents on this show.
It's possible, however, the final scene in Agent Carter lead me to believe that in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Leviathan was absorbed by Hydra in that jail cell. Doctor Fenhoff will join Arnim Zola and ultimately start working on Bucky Barnes, the Winter Soldier. Meanwhile, I presume that Dottie will continue the Black Widow Academy. I don't think Leviathan had enough strength in numbers to survive into the 21st Century.
In Marvel Comics, Mockingbird is an Avenger. What if her secret agenda is just a moonlighting gig? Does she have separate orders from Nick Fury? Bobbi Morse also took part in an operation that centered around The Vision, a character we will meet in Avengers: Age of Ultron. Morse ditched Operation: Vigilance when she learned the true agenda. Perhaps this has something to do with her plan on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. On the other hand, Mack in the comics worked with the C.I.A. and wrote a S.H.I.E.L.D. tell-all book. The two of them could have anything up their sleeves.
Images: Kelsey McNeal/ABC; Giphy (3)