Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Round Table: Frozen Over

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Donnie Gill (aka Blizzard) returned this week for a frosty fun time on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 Episode 3.

Join staff writers Jim Garner, Allison Nichols, Kathleen Wiedel, Christine Orlando and Henry A. Otero - plus Helicarrier Podcast's Andy Behbakht - in a discussion touching on everything from Simmons working for HYDRA... to the fate of Donnie Gill... to the Fitz and Ward's face off. And plenty more.

As always, we appreciate your participation so pull up a virtual chair and let's talk about the latest episode of S.H.I.E.L.D.!

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Did you have a feeling Simmons was undercover at HYDRA? Or did you believe she was a traitor?

Kathleen: Not even for a second did I believe that Simmons was actually HYDRA. She blames HYDRA for what happened to Fitz, her best friend in the whole world, whose life will never be the same after the brain damage he suffered. She has some serious motivation to do as much damage to them as possible. Infiltrating HYDRA gives her that opportunity.

Allison: I figured that there had to be something else going on. I mean the preview gave it away. It's still weird for me to picture Simmons undercover, especially after the numerous times last season where we saw just how terrible Simmons is at lying.

Jim: Simmons is way too perky to actually be HYDRA. Though her excuse that it allows her to do the research she wants is so well grounded in reality, I almost believe it myself.

Christine:  I certainly hoped not. My first guess was that she was undercover but as Skye pointed out, Simmons is normally a horrible liar. The demise of SHIELD and what happened to Fitz have definitely changed her.

Andy: Seeing the promo made me doubt, but this is Marvel and this is SHIELD so I kinda guessed that Simmons has gone in there to gather information from HYDRA for Coulson & Co.

Hank: Yeah ABC's teaser ruined it for me too. Can you imagine if they had spoiled the Ward reveal in a promo last season? I'm with Kathleen, after what happened to Fitz I think Simmons wants nothing more than to bring HYDRA down.

What did you think of Donnie Gill this time around? Is he gone for good or did he survive?

Kathleen: Hah. They clearly left the door open for a possible return with the manner of his exit. And this is a comic book show - you can never really count someone out forever. Look at Coulson!

Allison: I would hope he is alive and that the writers didn't bring him back just to kill him off. We didn't spend a lot of time with Donnie. It was like oh yeah it's him, and then he died. Well, there was some other stuff, but you get my point.

Jim: I thought they did a good job of advancing Donnie since the last time we saw him. For those that don't know, in the comics Donnie Gill is known as "Blizzard". So, I suspect we may see him again as he should be immune to his own ice.

Christine:  Ooh. Good to know Jim. Although I've never read the comic books I would assume that someone who can control ice can also survive within it so I'd expect Donnie to be back at some point this season.

Andy: I liked him a lot better and therefore hope that he didn't die in that final scene. He wasn't the kid friendly and mislead Donnie we saw last season but was instead a lot darker so I hope we will see him again in the series.

Hank: My first thought was "he's freezing over like Captain America." I agree, chances are he's in a state of suspended animation and will be found at some point. He's going to be one pretty pissed off super-villain too.

How did you feel about Ward this week? Share your thoughts on his talks with both Skye and Fitz.

Kathleen: Ward remains untrustworthy. Part of the problem is that it's still unclear what his true motivations are at this point. One major point of confusion is whether he was telling the truth about Skye's father. If so, how did he come by this information, since Dear Old Dad doesn't seem to be aligned with HYDRA? There are too many unanswered questions remaining. I loved the confrontation between Ward and Fitz, though. It was a very powerful scene. I do believe that Ward was trying to avoid killing Fitz and Simmons when he ejected them into the ocean. Maybe he does indeed feel guilt over the consequences Fitz is suffering...

Allison: I always enjoy when Ward appears on screen. I loved that Ward got to explain himself to Fitz. This is something that fans have debated about - whether or not Ward was saving or killing FitzSimmons. Ward and Fitz talking was heartbreaking and just fantastic. All we have seen is Ward and Skye, and so it is interesting to see how Ward changes whenever Fitz appears. Ward is fighting to earn back Skye's and Fitz's trust, but Ward hurt Fitz is a much worse way. It wasn't just a betrayal of trust. Ward sent Fitz to his death and is responsible for Fitz's struggles. Switching gears to Skye, I'm glad that Ward finally let slip that he knows Skye's dad. It will be interesting to see if she takes him up on his offer.

Jim: Well, now we know his end-game, or at least part of it - to take Skye to her father. Though I will admit that a small part of me wishes Fitz had made him suffer just a little more.

Christine: Go Fitz! I was proud of Fitz. Despite his diminished ability to communicate he managed to get his anger towards Ward across in a very powerful way. Like Jim, I wish he had tortured him a bit more. Ward definitely deserved it.

Andy: It was torture to have to see Fitz suffer so much when he learned that Ward had been under his feet this whole time. I was actually happy for a minute when Fitz tortured him in his cell. Ward's meeting with Skye was as always very nerve-wrecking because we don't know if we can trust him, but at least now Skye knows that her father is still out there.

Hank: Funny to hear you say that Jim, I thought the same... get him Fitz! He deserved to suffer more. It's interesting though, Ward is now one of the characters I find myself waiting to see weekly. It's fantastic how the writers took him from cookie-cutter to sympathetic. I'm glad they didn't drag out the Fitz/Ward confrontation and I think that he's going to get to Skye and she will be the one to free him to get to her father. I'm not sure Ward is loyal to HYDRA though, has love really changed him?

What role do you see the mysterious Agent 33 playing? Is she truly brainwashed?

Kathleen: I have a few theories - given that HYDRA's brainwashing technique still seems to have a few kinks to work out, I suspect that Agent 33 might break free at some point and possibly do herself in, possibly to protect Coulson and company.

Allison: I don't know anything about her other than she was brainwashed. I need to know more about her status at S.H.I.E.L.D. and her skill set. At least Coulson is aware that Hydra got to Agent 33, so if she pops up and Coulson tries to recruit her, he will be aware of Hydra and the fact that she was most likely brainwashed. I'm inclined to believe that she is truly brainwashed.

Jim: The fact that the writers specifically chose Agent 33, over just some "random number" makes me feel like there is a bigger story arc there. And as Donnie showed, the brainwashing doesn't always hold.

Christine: Well, Hydra never would have believed her transformation if it were easy. My hope is that she's still loyal to SHIELD and is playing them but perhaps that's wishful thinking. I think they're going to keep us guessing for a while.

Andy: Not a big one, sadly. She is most likely brainwashed, but you never know what might happen in the next episode with her. In the comics she is a very minor S.H.I.E.L.D. character so I don't know if she will actually be given a full character in future episodes.

Hank: I'm with you again Jim, why specifically Agent 33? I Google her and learned Agent 33 is a historian who studied the Greek Demigod Hercules. Nick Fury tasked her with recruiting Hercules to aid S.H.I.E.L.D. in the 1997 comics. As Andy mentioned she's minor, only appearing in 3 issues. Still, makes me wonder why her?

S.H.I.E.L.D. is becoming a problem for HYDRA, will they come after Coulson soon?

Kathleen: The biggest question is how long it will take before HYDRA learns the identity of the new director of SHIELD. How many of them know that Coulson's alive? Coulson was called Fury's "one good eye" and was an expert field agent and logistical miracle worker. If I were HYDRA and knew Coulson was still kicking, he'd probably be my first guess as to who's organizing those pesky SHIELD agents. Agent Sitwell obviously knew Coulson was alive, and he was revealed as HYDRA in The Winter Soldier. That said, it's not clear if Sitwell ever actually told anyone about Coulson before being killed: HYDRA's intelligence clearly seems to be lacking, since they didn't know that Simmons was working directly for Coulson before she come to them. If they had known, they'd have probably either shot her on sight or sent her upstairs to the brainwashing department.

Allison: I don't think Hydra views them really as a problem, maybe more of a concern. They still don't know who is in charge, so that is working to Coulson's advantage, even if he doesn't realize it yet. Maybe once S.H.I.E.L.D. gets a decent sized victory over Hydra, then Hydra will start to get more concerned.

Jim: If they do, Coulson is in real trouble. Right now HYDRA is working out of a really nice office building with dozens of floors of employees and Coulson is hiding in a single bunker. If Coulson doesn't gain some ground (and talent) soon there won't be much to stop HYDRA from wiping them off the map.

Christine: Coulson's in a precarious position. SHIELD is so small at this point that they are flying under the radar (most literally). But once that changes HYDRA will come after him and they are far more powerful right now. Hopefully Coulson's got some contingency plans up his sleeve. He's going to need them.

Andy: The minute they find out that he is leading the new S.H.I.E.L.D., they will totally come after Coulson so he better watch his back.

Hank: Absolutely! As Kathleen says it's just a matter of time. I mentioned in this week's review I'm expecting a captured Coulson and brainwashed Simmons episode.

Your turn fellow Agents! Join our discussion in the comments below. Did we miss something? Please feel free to bring it up and we'll talk about it. See you guys right back here next week for #4.

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 Episode 3 Quotes

Undercover is all about the relationships you make. If you're going to move up in HYDRA you need to make friends.

Coulson

I want to be left alone but you people won't stop coming after me. So I'm done hiding. It's time HYDRA learn once and for all I'm not interested. I'm not afraid. I'm pissed off. And every HYDRA agent they send is going to feel it.

Donnie Gill