In the fall, it was all about ghosts, other dimensions, and the melding of science and magic. But spring is the time for robots. The Life Model Decoys are here and they aren’t interested in serving humankind anymore.
Picking up not long after the end of the fall season, AIDA gets out of her bloodstained clothes (remember she took a few bullets for the team) and puts on some music for May, who is drugged and unconscious in the closet, essentially. AIDA says she must keep May hidden until her “substitute has served her purpose”… which might very well be getting her robot hands on the Darkhold.
Coulson and Mace are in agreement that the book must be safely disposed of. It’ll be transferred to an agent who specializes in getting rid of these artifacts. To be on the extra safe side, AIDA’s harddrive will also be erased so that she won’t retain any knowledge of the Darkhold. Uh, kind of too late for that.
As we know, AIDA has already taken her “life” into her own hands. She’s even removed her ability to feel pain. When Radcliffe, Fitz, and two agents arrive to reprogram her, she attacks without hesitation and easily escapes. Fitz is knocked right into what I’m pretty sure is the area where May is being held but he, stupidly, doesn’t look around at all. Instead, he and Radcliffe hurry back to the base to regroup. It’s not long before AIDA hacks her way into the base’s system and lets Coulson know she’s after the Darkhold. S.H.I.E.L.D. won’t give it up without a fight, but of course they don’t know that AIDA has someone on the inside.
Robot!May is doing an excellent job of playing her part. While Mack (who perfectly understands my incredulous frustration that anyone believed an A.I. could be trusted) goes off to get reinforcements aka YoYo, she and Coulson attempt to hold off AIDA. They fail spectacularly. Interestingly, robot!May seems to have been programmed to react very much like actual May, even telling AIDA she won’t let her have the Darkhold. Too bad AIDA has robot!May’s controls. And she even implants a video camera in her so when the substitute is locked in a room with Coulson, AIDA is able to learn where the Darkhold is being kept.
By the time Fitz is able to disable AIDA’s control of the system, she already has the book in hand and is headed to the door. Radcliffe and Fitz plead with her to stop but she claims the Darkhold helped her feel both regret and desire, something she was never programmed for. She doesn’t want to give it up. Well too damn bad. From the other side of the door, Mack comes through and slices AIDA’s head off. An expert on robot movies, and keen to point out how they all end, he quips, “Roll credits.”
With all of the robot excitement back at the base, you might expect the side plot this week to be less action-packed. Instead, we have Senator Ellen Nadeer and her brother, Vijay. He’s just recently broken out of his Terrigenesis shell after seven long months. Ellen welcomes him back to the land of the living with his favorite breakfast… and several Watchdogs ready to shoot him. The siblings, who witnessed their mother’s death during the Chitauri invasion, made a vow to one another that if either of them was infected with the alien disease, the other would kill them. Ellen is making good on it. Except Vijay swears he spent those seven months fighting off the Inhuman transformation. He remained human. After a long pause, Ellen believes him, though the Watchdogs aren’t as accepting.
Mace makes tracking down Vijay a top priority, one Daisy and Simmons can get behind. Simmons had already determined Vijay is Senator Nadeer’s brother and now she’s certain the woman is holding him hostage. Once Simmons has gone undercover in Ellen’s office and then subdued an aide that attacked her, they’re able to pin down a location for Vijay. Of course, Ellen isn’t exactly welcoming. She has just shooed S.H.I.E.L.D. away when shots ring out.
The Watchdogs, not content to let any potential Inhuman live, have tried to kill Vijay only to discover his superpower is speed. He easily disarms them. When S.H.I.E.L.D. and his sister come into the room, they each make their case for why he should come with them. Ultimately, Vijay, believing S.H.I.E.L.D. wants him as a weapon, chooses his sister. Wrong decision. On the getaway helicopter, she shoots him herself and tells the Watchdogs to take care of the body, adding, “Never question me again.”
You can’t trust anyone, I guess. Not your own sister, not your friends, not your fellow scientist. Because Radcliffe is behind all of AIDA’s machinations. Speaking to his secret new AIDA model, he says their opportunity to get the Darkhold is slim now. He wants it because he believes it holds the key to living forever. To make his plan work, he’s even behind the robot!May, whose video feed shows Coulson’s characteristic heart eyes. You stop that right now, Phil Coulson!
There’s one glimmer of good news: Vijay may not be dead after all. Even though he’s thrown out of the helicopter into the ocean, his rock cocoon covers him again. Does he have regeneration powers or adaptive powers? I expect we’ll soon find out.
- Is there a reason AIDA getting dressed was made out to be super sensual?
- Simmons calls Mace’s PR lackey Burroughs, “Smithers,” which I find hilariously perfect.
- Mack’s nicknames for AIDA:
- “Bloodthirsty murderbot”
- Radcliffe’s “beautiful, weird science sexbot”
- Mack’s belief in the roboapocalypse isn’t just fun. He has a provision in his life insurance for death by robot.
- Mack: “Have either of you seen a movie in the last 30 years? The robots always attack.”
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