There were sacrifices on both sides in the finale, but the Inhumans were hit hardest.
I understand S.H.I.E.L.D. and Hydra were the same thing to Jiaying, but her villainous turn in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 Episode 21 and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 Episode 22 left Skye without a mother again. Part of me wishes things had gone down differently.
We lost so many interesting characters this week. It appears Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 will be a reboot of sorts.
The finale picked up right where we left off and everyone fell for Jiaying's lie about Gonzales. I'm glad it didn't take long for Coulson to figure out Jiaying's evil plan. The Skye/May fight was fantastic, but I'll be honest, I was surprised she didn't use her powers sooner. May's good, but she's not Inhuman, so the odds were always in Skye's favor.
A ton of attention was paid to Bobbi in the finale, but again, after her "real" S.H.I.E.L.D. betrayal, I never liked the character much. I think that move ruined Mockingbird for me. Honestly, I'm thrilled ABC shelved the spinoff idea because I don't think it would have worked. Besides, we get a second season of Agent Carter and it doesn't get better than that.
For a two-hour finale, the pacing was spot on. Skye went to Raina for answers in the first eight minutes of the installment.
Skye: You knew, didn't you? Your visions, you saw fire, destruction. You knew it would all fall apart.
Raina: I'm afraid so. Everyone thinks flowers are so delicate, but they really are quite resilient.
Skye: I'm not here to talk botany.
Raina: No, you're here to ask questions about what's going to happen next.
Raina: Well that's the tragedy, because even if I were inclined to tell you... you wouldn't believe me.
When Raina started talking history and paths being intertwined, I knew her time was up. Of course, the line, "In fact, we'll never speak to each other again," kind of sealed it. It's a shame she was killed off, because her gift was so damn powerful. Actually, that might be the reason she was written out. Seeing the future put the Inhumans at a huge advantage. The playing field's more even now.
Cal was never more charming than he was this week. Kyle MacLachlan's time on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was wonderful and I'm glad he survived the bloodbath. Sure, he went through the T.A.H.I.T.I-wipe, but that doesn't mean we won't see him again someday. We had been waiting all season to see what Cal turned into. I liked the fact Mr. Hyde was monstrous, but not unrecognizable. That would have been a disservice to an amazing actor. We lost some of Ruth Negga's personality underneath all the makeup.
It was tough watching Jiaying attempt to lie to Skye. I'm glad she saw through the facade and realized what her mother had done.
Skye: She knew I would see this. She said as much. She saw who you really are so you killed her.
Jiaying: Everything I've done, everything I will do is for the protection of our people.
Skye: You killed Gonzales. You want a war.
Jiaying: War was inevitable. I struck first so we would have the advantage.
Skye: He came to make peace.
There were several amazing fight sequences in the finale. Again, the writers finally figured out a formula that works for the series. It wasn't surprising the Inhumans took over the ship, they're too powerful for mere mortals to compete. It makes sense Coulson would establish a "special unit" to deal with the gifted.
It was nice to see Lincoln realize Jiaying wasn't playing with a full deck. He's one of the few new characters this season I liked. I'm glad it seems he'll be around next year, and as one of the good guys. It was amusing when Mack knocked him out mid-sentence.
Though I've mentioned I'm not wild about Bobbi and Hunter, the moment Hunter opened the door and she took the bullet was massive. Perhaps that was a first step in the right direction for her character. I did love the conversation between May and her ex-husband. That's a relationship I can get behind.
Then there was Fitz and Simmons...
Simmons: You'll be careful.
Fitz: I won't be careful, I'll get the job done.
Simmons: Well, watch your back because I just saw Hunter with Bobbi and it made me realize that... It's just that, we never really spoke about what you said to me at the bottom of the ocean.
Fitz: This? Now? You want to talk about this now?
Simmons: No, we don't... it means a lot to me that we're friends again and maybe when you get back we could finally just talk about it.
Fitz: There's nothing to discuss Jemma.
Simmons: Maybe there is.
FitzSimmons went from almost a single entity in the first season, to two completely separate and kick ass agents this year. Sure, it took forever to bring them back together, but the payoff delivered. If the Kree stone didn't completely obliterate her, that is. My theory is that it teleported her somewhere. I don't think she's stuck inside and I doubt the writers would have killed Jemma off like that.
Ultimately, this was a strong closer to the second season. The Jemma twist was just one of several hints at what's coming in Season 3. The Terrigen Crystals fell into the ocean and we watched them get packaged as fish oil pills. Will a major infection spread or will S.H.I.E.L.D. stop it? Coulson lost an arm; can you believe it? Will he get a mechanical one or will the tech from Avengers: Age of Ultron be used?
It was sad, yet appropriate that Cal finished Jiaying off. He brought this damaged version of her back, after all. Again, I loved that he was spared and I hope we see him again. May deserved a little vacation. I think that will do her some good. Ward is full-on bad guy, and that's how I like him best. I'm curious to see where he's taken next year.
What did you think of "S.O.S"? Is Jemma gone for good? Will people start getting sick from the fish oil pills? Or will more Inhumans begin to pop up? What do you think of Skye's "gifted" team? You're up, go ahead and sound off on the finale and the season overall in the comments below. Look for our Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. round table later this week.
Don't forget, you can watch Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. online via TV Fanatic if you need to catch up or simply want to start from the top.