Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7 went out on a high note, revisiting some of its greatest hits and promising a happy ending for the majority of its characters.
For a show that was a spin-off of one of the most successful film franchises of all time, the expectations were high from the start.
Thankfully they were able to cement their worthiness as a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, proven by the victory lap they took us on this final season. From HYDRA to the Quantum Realm, it's a season we won't soon forget.
Elizabeth Henstridge's directorial debut on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7 Episode 9 was arguably one of the series' best.
It was essentially a bottle episode as Daisy and Coulson tried to figure a way out of an exasperating time loop; the hour was a fun escape from the usual trouble -- AKA the Chronicoms -- the agents were facing while still managed to move the story forward.
It featured Daisy and Sousa's first kiss, the mysterious dread of Simmons' memories, a crucial talk about morality between Daisy and Coulson, the promise that this would be the team's last mission, and Enoch's unfortunate death.
Plus, there was a hilarious montage of the team trying to stop Enoch from killing all of them. What more could you want from an episode?
I'll start this off by saying that even the worst episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7 is still considered good by overall television show standards.
But if we had to pick one, it would be Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7 Episode 10.
Firstly, it was terrible to see Daisy witness her mother's death again. Hasn't the series tortured her enough?
There was also the fact that there was enough plot in this one episode for at least two. Compared to the time loop hour that preceded it, there was not a lot of room for the tenth episode to breathe and felt a bit rushed at times.
Favorite Returning Character
Since Daniel Sousa had never appeared on an episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. before this season, he'll be excluded from this category. Jiaying's reappearance, however, was a nice surprise that served to further Daisy's story.
Daisy never got to witness who her mother was before Daniel Whitehall experimented on her and forever changed her. The last memory Daisy has of Jiaying is her attempt to kill her.
While it was a bittersweet reunion, Daisy was able to see the light side of her mother, who only wanted to help others.
It was a complete turnaround from when we last saw Jiaying, and it was great that Daisy was able to receive a bit of closure, and a new sister, from this stolen time with her mother.
Most Confusing Storyline
Okay, so was Fitz the one jetting them through time, or was the Zephyr just programmed to follow the Chronicoms?
The science behind their time-traveling adventures remains to be a bit muddled, even with all the explanation we received on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7 Episode 13.
They made it seem as if no time had passed at all for Fitz from when he entered the pod to when he traveled between timelines to meet up with the rest of the team.
If that is true, then why were Sibyl and Nathaniel so worried about Fitz? If someone could explain it to me, please do so in the comments, it would be greatly appreciated.
When you think about it, there was no other way for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to end other than Coulson jetting away with his precious, newly upgraded Lola.
It had been a while since we last saw Coulson's prized possession, but anyone who has seen every episode knows Lola when they see it's shiny red exterior.
Having Lola in the last scene with Coulson was the perfect way to give a little nod to diehard fans while also bringing Coulson's time on the show full circle.
Character We Missed the Most
While this season was near perfect, it was hard to ignore the elephant in the room that was Fitz's absence.
Leopold Fitz has been a fan favorite since Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1, and it was devastating not to have him come along for the majority of the final ride.
Thankfully, his presence was felt throughout with the mystery of where he was and with Simmons, Deke, and Enoch keeping his spirit alive on the Zephyr. But there's nothing like the original.
We were able to see him on the two-part finale and receive closure for his story, but we can't help but be greedy and want more of Fitz.
The agents zipped through time and traveled from decade to decade, but nothing beats the '80s.
Especially when that meant that we got to see Deke form a stereotypical '80s rock band and claim other hits as his own. The Deke Squad's performance of "Don't You (Forget About Me)" will never be anything short of epic.
The show went all out on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7 Episode 7 to embrace the decade with great music, killer robots, and cheesy one-liners.
What more could you want?
We always knew that there was a great probability that not every single member of the team would make it out alive for the final season, and unfortunately, that was the case for Enoch.
Surprisingly, Enoch's demise was the only major one, but that didn't make it hurt any less.
Enoch was the best of the Chronicoms, and the team's inspiration in their final battle against them. He was not always appreciated, but that never stopped him from trying to help them and his best friend, Fitz.
He was a true hero that saved the team a countless amount of times, and he will not soon be forgotten by them all.
This is, by far, the funniest line of the season. Thank you, Jeff Ward, for making me pause the episode during my watch for at least ten minutes because I was laughing too hard.
Deke: I'll stay.
Deke: First of all, I'm the one with the scientific knowledge to be able to repatch the power. Danny boy over here is still impressed by a lightbulb.
Sousa: That's not accurate or nice.
Let's face it, Ward is a terrible person, and he will always be a terrible person. Or, at least, in the original timeline.
However, he was a major character in the debut season and the couple that followed it. He was also directly tied to the greatest plot twist the show has ever done, and one of the best ones in television history.
It would have been amazing if Ward reappeared in some fashion on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s last season. There were mentions of him, but we never saw him in person.
Ward is one of the best villains the show has ever developed, and it was a missed opportunity to not feature him in some capacity for the series' final run.
Favorite New Couple
The coupling of Daisy and Sousa was a surprise to all, but they somehow made it work.
Maybe it was through the sheer chemistry between Chloe Bennet and Enver Gjokaj, or the fact that opposites attract came into major play, but we loved to see them fall in love onscreen.
Daisy has quite often struggled in the love department, and Sousa had his own troubles on Marvel's Agent Carter, so it was a relief that they were able to find each other despite the odds stacked against them.
Daisy and Sousa got their happy ending, but now that we've had a little taste of their dynamic, we can't help but want to see even more.
The character of Kora was a shock to all, especially to Daisy, who had no idea she once had a sister. Unfortunately, Nathaniel got to her first and manipulated her into thinking S.H.I.E.L.D. was the enemy.
Kora quickly became a villain who hated her mother and wanted the world to pay for her pain. Her motivation made sense until it didn't.
She quickly went from wanting to destroy S.H.I.E.L.D. to saving her sister's life. Of course, Nathaniel's betrayal was a factor, but her redemption still felt rushed.
It's great that Daisy now has a new sister, but it would've been nice to see Kora and her relationship with Daisy develop more so that her motivations would be more clear.
Villain We Loved to Hate
Oh, Nathaniel. What a manipulative creep he was, and it was so satisfying to see Daisy blow him to pieces.
As a Malick, it was obvious that Nathaniel was going to have at least one evil bone in his body. But it turns out he had a lot more than that.
From taking Daisy's powers to using Kora for his personal gain, Nathaniel was a true villain that everyone loved to hate. Even his mannerisms were off-putting, and seeing him meet his end was something we were waiting for all season.
He was a great villain to introduce for the show's final season since he was new but still familiar because of his family name.
Most Heartwarming Ending
Fitz and Simmons were put through the wringer on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., weren't they?
Their relationship, as Fitz liked to put it, was cursed through and through. From Simmons being sucked up by a Monolith to Fitz being an evil HYDRA agent in the Framework, they have seen it all.
Now they have the cutest little daughter and are retired from their tiring S.H.I.E.L.D. work.
If anyone deserved to have a happy ending after all the tragedy they faced, it was Fitz and Simmons.
When it was announced that Enver Gjokaj would be reprising his role as Daniel Sousa on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s final season, everyone assumed it would be for only one episode.
Well, the joke is on us because he appeared on ten out of the thirteen episodes!
Sousa fit right in with the rest of the team, especially with Daisy, and it was a joy to watch him join the show for its last season. And it was a win for fans who loved him on Marvel's Agent Carter.
Sousa's extended appearance was the best and most welcome surprise of one of the best seasons of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Overall Grade: A+
It's rare for a show, especially one in the superhero genre, to have its last season be arguably its best. And with one of its main and most popular characters missing for the majority of it nonetheless.
These last thirteen episodes showed us why Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. resonated with so many people and kept them watching.
The show excelled at portraying and developing the found family trope, with memorable, complex characters and relationships. And all that and more shined through on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 7.
It was a love letter to the fans, and it was rare in the fact that a mass majority of the characters received happy endings. Other shows, please take notice.
What grade would you give Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s final season?
What are your thoughts on the endings of each individual character? What else would you have liked to see?
And do you want a spin-off as badly as I do?
Let me know in the comments, and do not forget that you can watch Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. online right here via TV Fanatic!
Sarah Little was a staff writer for TV Fanatic.She retired in September 2021.