Agents of SHIELD Season 4 Episode 1: Ghost Rider Doesn’t Disappoint

This season has been heavily advertised as being the season of Ghost Rider. Ghost Rider’s flaming logo was even put under the title card at the end of the episode. And while most of the episode was build up as Daisy tried to track down the mysterious serial killer, when Ghost Rider finally did appear, portrayed by Gabriel Luna, we were all thinking the same thing: Thank God it’s not Nicolas Cage.

But really, Gabriel Luna did a great job in the few scenes he had, and the Ghost Rider special effects were great. It’s clear that AoS is setting up Ghost Rider to be what Punisher was to Daredevil- the morally ambiguous, but undeniably lovable, antihero.

The rest of the crew was also there, including Yoyo who had a beautiful scene where she made Mack feel super uncomfortable. It turns out Yoyo is secretly helping Daisy because those Inhumans have got to stick together.

Agent Coulson (no longer Director) and Mack went around trying to track down Daisy against the new Director’s wishes, with a little help from May’s intel. The Director still hasn’t made an appearance. All we know is that all of the gang hate him as he deliberately split up the fam. Plus he did that weird color-coded hierarchy that’s not a hierarchy thing.

Only Simmons seems to have his trust, though as she reveals to May, in what was a beautiful and semi-frightening tirade, she knows exactly what kind of person the Director is and has only clawed her way to power to protect the gang as much as she can. If Simmons were on Game of Thrones, she’d leave everyone else in the dust.

Meanwhile, Dr. Radcliffe is being super creepy with his female robot. While it made for a funny scene with Fitz not knowing how to respond to a beautiful naked woman, it’s a pretty old trope and only served to solidify that Radcliffe is disgusting. Of course, now Fitz is involved (for the science, I hope) and hiding Radcliffe’s invention from Simmons. This will only end in tears.

Overall this episode was pretty slow and mostly set-up, but worth it for the Daisy v. Ghost Rider fight at the end. At the moment it’s unclear whether this season will have a formal villain, or whether it will follow the superhero movie trend of people trying to do the right thing in different ways that the other party finds morally inexcusable. One thing’s for sure: this season, with its later time slot and already abundant use of fake blood, is set to be a lot darker than the previous seasons.

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