‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Recap: The Agents Are Stuck in a Time Loop Heading Towards Destruction in Season 7, Episode 9 “As I Have Always Been”

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Clark Gregg, Chloe Bennet, Jeff Ward, and Elizabeth Henstridge in Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Image courtesy of ABC.

The team is stuck in a time loop as the Zephyr is hurdling towards destruction in a time storm, but only Daisy and Coulson remember. The two of them try their hardest to find a solution before time runs out and it could prove fatal for one of the agents. Find out what happens in this week’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. “As I Have Always Been,” directed by Elizabeth Henstridge.

Daisy wakes up in her pod and gets out, Sousa just waking up on a chair near her. Daisy asks if they jumped again but Sousa isn’t sure. She meets up with Mack and May as alarms are going off. There’s damage to nearly all systems and May is trying to get a read on their location. She tells Daisy the Time Drive overloaded. Daisy notices they’re flying through a wormhole of some sort and asks if anyone wants to fill her in on that. Yo-Yo comes over a video and says it looks like something just fried the Quinjet’s flight system. Jemma comes over comms, saying that radiation levels are off the charts, they need to get out of this. Deke comes running in, not wanting to alarm anyone but they’re trapped in a time storm. It’s just like what Jemma said, they jumped within a jump and it tore a hole in the space-time. Now they’re being pulled in towards the vortex like they’re circling a drain. And if they go down that drain, they’ll cease to have ever existed or be reduced to the size of an atom. It’s pulling them in and they’re just 94 kilometers away. Suddenly there’s a radiation flare and Mack is in pain, saying he can’t see. Yo-Yo says it shorted out the doors to the Quinjet; she’s trapped inside. Deke leaves to go help her and Daisy and Sousa get Mack to Jemma.

Daisy and Sousa get a literally blind Mack to Jemma and she gets something for the burns. Enoch comes in, wondering if Jemma wants help examining the Time Drive and she says she would but Mack comes first. Through comms, May says they just got hit with another flare. Daisy grabs a fire extinguisher and leaves to take care of it. She’s able to extinguish the fire the Time Drive starts malfunctioning. Just as Daisy asks if that’s supposed to happen, she wakes up in her pod.

Daisy steps out and catches up to Mack and May, alarms blaring. The same dialogue is being repeated and Daisy is trying to make sense of what’s going on. She sees the time storm, not believing what she’s seeing, both outside and inside. Daisy tells Mack, May, and Sousa that something is happening to her. Everything is being repeated and Deke says they’re 91 kilometers away from the vortex. Daisy runs to close the doors just as the flare comes, saving Mack, and Yo-Yo comes over video. Daisy says that Yo-Yo is trapped on the Quinjet, that flare just shorted the doors. Yo-Yo tells them she’s right and Deke leaves to help. “What’s going on with you?” Daisy doesn’t know but she does know that Jemma is working on the Time Drive schematics right now and that’s obviously connected. Sousa follows Daisy and they meet up with Jemma. Daisy thinks she’s time-looping; she’s done this already. Jemma says she’ll see if she can help; Enoch, the flare, the fire, all being repeated. The Time Drive malfunctions again and Daisy wakes up inside her pod.

Daisy finds Coulson, who seems to be the only other one on the Zephyr who knows they’re in a time-loop and powers him on. Coulson tells her that the Time Drive is stuck. Daisy wakes up again in her pod, meeting up with Coulson and continuing their conversation. She asks about flying out but he tells her they tried it. No navigation, radiation fried the controls, and technically, space is irrelevant so they narrowed it down to fixing the drive. They can’t get far enough before everything resets.

Daisy wakes up again in her pod and tells Mack and May they’re in a time storm before Deke has the chance. She asks Deke how far away they are from approaching the drain and it’s 79 kilometers. Daisy meets up with Coulson and he tells her it used to be more than that. Each loop resets them but it also brings the Zephyr a little closer to the vortex and destruction. Daisy says they have to solve the riddle faster. During the next loop, Daisy tells Mack and May they’re repeating time. Daisy copies what Yo-Yo and Jemma say, and predicting what Deke’s going to say.

Deke says they’re 65 kilometers from the vortex already, he doesn’t know how many more loops that means they have. Deke leaves to try to get more information on the Drive and he finds Jemma. He tells her she’s the one with the Time Drive knowledge to fix it. Without that implant in place, they could solve this. Deke wonders if they could just take it out temporarily, without that implant blocking Jemma’s memory… Coulson overhears and Daisy tells her that once they get the answer, the loop will reset, and the implant will be back in place. Jemma reluctantly gives in and tells Daisy they should go before she changes her mind. Jemma is in a separate room while Deke, Daisy, Enoch and Coulson are right outside, watching her through the window. Just as Jemma is about to remove the implant, she starts coughing, not being able to breathe. The door is locked and the others try to get Jemma to open the door, pleading to her. But it’s too late and Jemma is soon laying lifeless on the ground.

In the next loop, Daisy makes sure she goes with Jemma to take the implant out. Jemma starts coughing and soon, Daisy follows. She notices it’s a gas leak and is able to muster up enough strength to open the door, but not before Jemma lies lifeless on the ground again. Enoch checks Jemma and Coulson checks Daisy but it’s too late, they’re dead. Enoch notices a line has been cut, too neat and precise, possibly made with a knife. This was no accident, it was deliberate. Almost as if it was murder.

After a few more loops and Coulson catching Daisy up to speed, he asks if she caught how close they are to the vortex this time around. Daisy thinks Deke said it was 41 kilometers and Coulson says they’re running out of time. And someone there is willing to kill just to keep them from unblocking Jemma’s memory. They round up the three super-obvious suspects; Enoch, Deke, and Jemma. Since Jemma was the one killed, that makes her less of a suspect. They’re all trying to understand. Coulson tells Daisy they’ll get answers elsewhere and to work on the Time Drive. Jemma knows it means removing the implant. “Get it over with before I change my mind.” Coulson tells Mack and May, who also have a hard time understanding. Someone could have been brainwashed, replaced by a Chronicom. Coulson says that bottom line, someone killed Jemma and Daisy, he watched them die. “I don’t want to see that anymore.” Mack suggests Yo-Yo as a solution, maybe she’s fast enough to get the implant out of Jemma before someone can stop her.

During the next loop, Coulson uses a blowtorch to open the doors to the Quinjet just enough so Yo-Yo can get through. There’s another loop and Daisy tells Jemma about what’s going on, convincing her to take the implant out. Sousa finds Daisy and she tells him about the time loop, telling him they just need to get the implant out. Sousa tells her it’s a trap, she said somebody obviously went through the drawer, and Jemma was supposed to get the scanner. Until Daisy told her she was going to do it. Jemma is the one they’re trying to kill, they still need the scanner so if Sousa dies, he’ll just reset, no problem. If Daisy dies, she loses her memories. Sousa grabs the scanner and dies, Daisy waking up in her pod again.

Coulson tells Daisy they are no closer to knowing who’s doing this. “Well, the upside is we’re making progress – thanks to Sousa.” Coulson gets impatient, someone keeps trying to kill their people. Why doesn’t that piss Daisy off? She looks at Coulson speechless and he apologizes. They go back and forth about what it’s been like seeing their friends die. Coulson says he’s a machine now, he has programming which won’t even let him… He interrupts himself, realizing that it’s Enoch. They interrogate him, saying he could have had the power of suggestion programmed into him without his knowledge. And because her memory’s blocked, Jemma wouldn’t remember it either. Deke says that Enoch wouldn’t do that, it doesn’t make any sense. Coulson thinks it’s possible Enoch was programmed with the idea that nothing, not even his friendship with them, should get in the way of protecting humanity. To know for sure, Daisy tests it with the scanner. Before being able to do so, however, Enoch pushes Jemma out of the way, punches Coulson, and strangles Daisy. Jemma pleads with Enoch to stop, she doesn’t want this. Enoch says she programmed him to protect the implant at all costs, even if he had to kill. Daisy manages to push him off.

After a couple of failed attempts because of Enoch, Coulson suggests they try something more direct. He and Daisy meet up with Enoch before he gets to the lab and Daisy tells him they have a situation that they wanted to talk to him about. The plan doesn’t work as they’re both soon beaten up. The next few attempts end up the same way, but involving more of the team. During the following loop, Daisy has Sousa tell Jemma everything. Sousa tells her to stay while he sets up the procedure and Enoch follows him, seemingly setting up a trap. Mack and Sousa have Enoch cornered and May and Yo-Yo come in. Enoch begins to fight them while Daisy, Deke, and Coulson begin to remove the implant from Jemma but it’s too late and Daisy wakes up in her pod.

Daisy successfully removes the implant and Jemma says that Enoch’s the key. He’s been against them but he’s the key. Chronicoms use Electrochron Displacement Mechanism to regulate energy stability. It could do the same for the Time Drive but Jemma says it’s not that simple. Taking it out would kill Enoch. Daisy wakes up in her pod, relieved for the first time.

Daisy tells Jemma she needs her to meet her in the LMD lab and to bring Enoch. Deke tells Daisy they’re less than one kilometer from the vortex and she tells him she needs him to come with her. In the LMD lab, Daisy tells Deke, Jemma, and Enoch the vortex is about to kill them but they’re stuck in a time loop that is keeping them from breaking out. Daisy and Coulson tell them about Enoch’s EDM and there’s a risk, which is why they’re there. Jemma says there has to be another solution, they can’t just expect Enoch to sacrifice himself. However, Enoch removes the EDM from himself. He’ll die and the rest of them will live. “I would like to think Fitz would do the same for me. I would like to think all of you would.” Jemma grabs the EDM and walks away, Deke following her and Enoch soon falls to the ground.

Deke connects the EDM to the Time Drive, making adjustments. Mack tells everyone they should be ready to jump out of the storm any minute. Daisy and Coulson have a moment with Enoch, who tells them even though they will survive, the team will not. He’s seen the future. “Carry on this mission and cherish it, for it will be your last mission together.” They stay with Enoch until his last breath as he talks about Fitz. Over comms, Mack says the jump was successful. They’re safe.

There are just four episodes left of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.! Don’t miss the final season Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET/9 p.m. CT on ABC, streaming the next day on Hulu and On Demand.

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By Megan
Megan has been passionate about writing since she was little and has been passionate about all things pop culture and nerdy since almost as long. Joining Nerds and Beyond in 2019, she also graduated from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh in 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Journalism. Megan is constantly binge-watching shows and finding new things to obsess over. 9-1-1 and Marvel currently reign as the top obsessions. You can find her on Twitter @marvels911s if you ever want to discuss some certain firefighters.
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