Agents of SHIELD Episode 404 recap and preview for next week
On her day off, Simmons is apartment hunting for her and Fitz. She got some kind of direct email offer about an apartment, and somehow, her vast secret agent training didn’t tell her to be suspicious. The apartment is open, the lock busted, and the lights are off. Simmons wisely pulls out her gun, but the threat isn’t serious; it is Daisy. She is in bad shape and needs Simmons to patch her up. Simmons does so, as Daisy explained how she tracked Simmons’ search history to figure out a way to get to her. Simmons is cold towards Daisy, mad that she is being used. But it’s about to get worse. Daisy shows her a paper she took off the Watchdogs, with info on a host of Inhumans. Someone has hacked into the SHIELD servers to find their victims, and Daisy wants Simmons to help her hack the servers to figure out who. Simmons declines, so Daisy suggests it isn’t voluntary and pulls a gun.
Daisy has a complex plan about Simmons stealing the ID of agent Albee when she brings updated files to the server, then using it to get inside and plugging in a USB drive that will allow Daisy access to the data. Instead, Simmons simply hands Albee the drive, then explains to Daisy that she is technically Albee’s boss. The ladies wait at the apartment, and the data starts flowing. Albee came through. It looks as though whoever hacked the database is tracking Inhumans based on tracking watches they were issued for their own protection. Daisy recognizes a name high up on the list: James. Daisy is ready to roll out to save him on her own, but Simmons disavows her of that idea. “You can’t have it both ways. We are in this together, so suck it up.”
Of course, James is working at a fireworks store. He is not happy to see Simmons or Daisy, but they are glad to see him safe. They want to protect him, by first making him remove his watch. Daisy quakes it off because he didn’t take to it willingly. They want James to fight with them, but he has pretty much given up on life. Nothing to fight for. Daisy tells him that he has to fight back, in order to move on. He finally agrees and tells them to meet him at the storage place next door, after closing.
James finally arrives at the storage unit and tells them he has some explosives to help them on their mission. When he opens the storage unit, there is a Watchdog inside, his gun pointed at James. Other Watchdogs reveal themselves, all with guns. It was all a setup. James is working with the Watchdogs to hunt down and kill the Inhumans, a “scourge” that he never wanted to be part of. James will be the last Inhuman they kill, and he is okay with that. He doesn’t just hate himself; he hates all Inhumans. Daisy uses her power to quake them back, allowing her and Simmons to hide in another storage unit. Daisy is in really bad shape after that last quake.
Coulson pays a visit to Uncle Eli in jail. He doesn’t beat around the bush, and tells Eli that if he helps him, Coulson will help get him out of prison. He explains that Eli’s colleagues are still alive, but now with superpowers they are using to hurt people. Eli doesn’t want to get involved.
Coulson meets up with Mack outside, not surprised by Eli’s reaction. He isn’t too worried. Robbie drives up, clearly with a plan to talk to Eli. Mack recognizes him, and Robbie speeds off. The agents pursue in a daring car chase that leads them into the reservoir (fun fact: the same place they shot Terminator 2). Robbie is getting away, but Coulson isn’t worried. Suddenly, Robbie’s car slams to a halt, knocking him unconscious. The jet was parked down there, in invisible mode. Robbie hit the jet, but there isn’t a dent to his car. When Robbie wakes, he is in a containment cell on the jet. Coulson is fascinated by him: he only kills people who deserve it, and he isn’t an Inhuman. Robbie says he made a deal with the devil. Coulson considers his options, and lets Robbie out. He wants answers, and he thinks Eli has them. He also thinks that he and Robbie are on the same side, and should help each other. Coulson just wants to listen in on his conversation with Eli.
Robbie agrees and visits Eli. Eli thinks it is suspicious timing, but believes his nephew when he says SHIELD just wants to help. According to Eli, Lucy and Joseph Bauer brought Eli in to build their design, a quantum particle generator that could build matter out of, essentially, nothing. It defied physics, but the machine killed the whole team, everyone except Joseph, who Eli blamed for the whole incident. He snapped, and beat Joseph into a coma, and now he is doing the time. Eli thinks that, if Lucy is alive, she will go after “the book,” the one that gave them the knowledge to build the machine. The whole team was obsessed with it, and Eli believes it is evil. Mack gets an alert that there is a problem with an “asset” (an Inhuman) and Coulson tells Robbie they need to make a detour. It is up to Robbie if he wants to come, but Coulson still plans on keeping his end of the deal.
Ghost Lucy is still obsessed with that book. She goes to her comatose husband and uses her ghostly powers to will him awake and demands the location of the book.
Back at the storage units, James starts rolling exploding fireballs down the hallway until he blows off the door of the unit Simmons and Daisy are hiding in. “Killing you may not bring me peace, but it sure will be fun,” James says as he approaches with a flaming chain. As he whips it behind him, it is caught – by Robbie. This was the alert Mack got, and clearly Robbie decided to help them out. Robbie sends the girls to find Coulson while he deals with James. James is cocky about his chances, until he throws a fireball at Robbie and it literally has no effect on him. Robbie goes full Ghost Rider, and whips James with the flaming chain.
Coulson and Mack kill a few Watchdogs in the fireworks shop when Simmons shows up… and Daisy. Awk-ward. Simmons fills the guys in on James, but doesn’t have much time. Upstairs, Ghost Rider and James are still fighting. In an attempt to free himself, James melts the wall, and both flamers fall into the fireworks warehouse. Coulson makes a witty remark about the fact that it had to end this way, and the four of them run. Outside, they are treated to a wicked fireworks display. Robbie limps out, dragging James behind him. He is alive but unconscious.
On the jet, Daisy makes a weak attempt to thank Coulson for the save. He is cold but glad she is safe. Daisy is ready to get back out there and battle the Watchdogs, but Coulson has more pressing issues, and makes a point out of telling her how they keep everyone safe, not just Inhumans. The book Eli spoke of is The Darkhold. Called by some the Book of Sins or the Book of Spells, it contains infinite knowledge and was something that Daniel Whitehall and Nick Fury both tried – without success – to get their hands on. They need to go see Joseph Bauer – he just woke up. Coulson guilts Daisy and Robbie into joining them.
Fitz goes over to Radcliffe’s house to work on a less severe cure for those who get the “ghost disease.” He is shocked and horrified to discover Aida tending to May. It is a huge risk, but Radcliffe points out that who is better to put Aida through her paces than May? It is the ultimate Turing test, and Fitz cannot deny he is interested in seeing what happens. Despite a couple of close calls, May does not seem to figure out that Aida is an android. Neither does Coulson, when he and Simmons pop in to collect May. Simmons pulls Fitz aside. She new almost instantly that Aida was an android. He wanted to tell her, but didn’t want her to have to lie. Simmons’ next lie detector test (a hazard of the job) is tomorrow… and she is going to have more than a few lies to tell.
You can watch a preview for the next episode below!