It seems like things have been leading to a faceoff between Coulson and Ward for months, and we finally got it — and it took place on an alien planet, to boot.
Spoilers ahead for the midseason finale of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.!
After Ward put a bullet through Rosalind, you knew Coulson would go to the ends of the Earth (or in this case, an alien world) to get vengeance. Coulson tracked Ward and his HYDRA team to the alien planet where Simmons was trapped, and managed to get the drop on the madman, leading fans to think he might bring Ward back to Earth to face justice for his crimes.
But, when push came to shove, Coulson decided to use the force of his robo-hand to dispense some justice of his own. For breaking Coulson’s heart, he (literally) crushed Ward’s in his chest. You have to love the poetry in the moment. Clark Gregg (aka Phil Coulson) chatted with TV Line about the shocking decision, and what it means for his character (and the show) moving forward:
“I didn’t know. I knew that I was going through the portal and that Ward was on the other side. I knew that it was going to be a pretty final showdown, and yet I was not prepared for reading that script. There are a few scripts over the course of the 55 or whatever we’ve done that generate a stunned text [message] thread amongst the cast, and this was one of the most active and shocked text threads. At the same time, I love what they came up with in terms of paying off the showdown in a completely final way, but at the same time leaving us the brilliant Brett Dalton still to play with.
It’s such an interesting moment they wrote, because he couldn’t leave Ward on the planet. It really gets down to the heart of leadership. I think [Coulson] is going to spend some time trying to figure out whether it was an act of vengeance or an act of protecting others, or both. But I don’t think it’s going to sit well…There are a lot of ways in which Ward and Coulson were on very parallel and linked journeys, and in some ways they both undergo very deep transformations in that episode, from which they will never wholly return.”
Of course, as anyone who stuck around for the post-credit scene knows, Ward’s body is still around, having been taken over by the mysterious alien HYDRA was so keen to rescue. So, Brett Dalton’s tenure in the Marvel universe isn’t over just yet.
What’d you think of Coulson’s decision to kill Ward? An earned moment, or out of character for a man who has often been the heart of the MCU?
(Via TV Line)