—> SPOILERS ARE IN HERE <—
Season 6 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. opens up with a 2-minute refresh of previous events that serve as a platform for what’s to come in the 13 episode season. Yes, 13 episodes this season. The shortened season was a topic I talked about with producer’s at WonderCon earlier this year, and you know what? This opening episode already has me wishing it a typical 20+ episode season. At least we can all sleep at night knowing season 7 is confirmed. The direction of a shortened season could be a double-edged sword, so I’m hoping it’s for the better. In theory, if season 7 is also shortened, I can just imagine this is a regular sized season that takes over a year to air.
“Missing Pieces” kicks off with the team split up on earth and in space. Daisy and Jemma are the space team looking for Fitz. In fact, we get a look at frozen Fitz in a pod while Enoch watches over him during space travel. The spaceship they’re on gets blown up, which leads to Enoch dying.. again (questionable). Back on earth we have Mack settling in his new role as Director of SHIELD, which will probably take all season to see him somewhat comfortable. There’s a little team meeting about a situation — Mack is kind of clueless until an agent provides a comedic solution. Must be stressful for the new Director since he hides in his office to watch a hologram recording of Coulson prepping him for the job. Yo-Yo and May adjust to the transition without Coulson around. Oh, Mack and Yo-Yo? They aren’t really a thing, apparently, since she is secretly seeing that new agent mentioned earlier.
Coulson is physically gone, but what is Clark Gregg still doing in the main cast? Well our introduction to his new character is with a blast. “Sarge” is the name, and he is recognized by SHIELD folk as Coulson, but Gregg’s new character has no idea about that. It will be interesting to see where Sarge’s path goes in the following episodes. It’ll be really good when the others get a look at him. Wouldn’t surprise me if this Sarge relates to conflicts Daisy and Jemma come across.
Other things to note.. Fitz has a little scene at the end that looks space-based, and perhaps he’s unknowingly in cahoots with Sarge. Now I’m just speculating with logic. Woops. Jemma does something not Jemma-like, and it lowkey annoyed me. However, she finds something useful in the pod Fitz was stored in, and she’ll do anything to get Fitz back. Barry Shabaka Henley also makes his debut as Dr. Benson. I get this vibe Benson will be swayed toward evil later in the season. Brooke Williams (12 Monkeys, Spartacus) has a role in this show now?!
I feel, overall, the mold of these main characters you grew to know over the seasons is different after last season. What they went through in season 5 changed as much as what they changed in their main timeline history. The only constant is that Fitz and Simmons belong together at all costs. It was said in Avengers: Endgame that if you mess with time, time tends to mess back. That was probably never intended to reflect on this show, but it sort of, in a way, seems applicable.
A lot of groundwork gets planted during this episode. Recurring characters like Piper and Davis get more screen time and speaking lines! I think that’s great since we’ve seen those characters appear for several seasons now. The most interesting part of this season will obviously revolve around Sarge, and rightfully so since the show thrives off Gregg’s acting finesse. Let’s also take note that this episode is directed by Clark Gregg, so he technically is still a director of something with SHIELD. :)
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. “Missing Pieces” premieres this Friday at 8pm PST on ABC.