Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD Season 4, Episode 6 Recap: The Good Samaritan


This week’s Agents of SHIELD finally hands us the backstory of our newest addition to the team Robbie Reyes, the Ghost Rider.

This week promised us the backstory of Robbie Reyes. But for those who hoped perhaps we might get a “Blue Planet” episode, set completely in the past, giving us the good behind what made Robbie the way he is, perpare of disappointment. There was nothing like that in a the cards. Instead we got two backstories running in tandem, that of Robbie and that of Eli, including the experiment that first set Lucy Bauer’s team on the path to ghosthood. All that mixed in with present day as well. For those hoping there’s be time for a deep dive, forty-four minutes just wasn’t going to be able to give.

"Fitz: The director hasn’t found you-know-who and yo- know-who yet?Mack: Don’t know what you’re talking about.Fitz: Right, me neither."

Nope, because as much as we’d like the story of Robbie to be one that could take up an hour, the answer seems to be that it can’t. Instead this episode was filled with smaller plotlines, like the fact that things are getting complicated in Robbie’s personal life in present day. I’m not sure I quite buy that the grabbed Robbie’s kid brother Gabe and took him into custody because they thought Lucy Bauer would come after him. It seemed more like a MacGuffin to put the kid on the flying base so that he, Quake and Robbie would be trapped together once Mace showed up and they had to be hidden away and quickly. (After last week’s button seen with Nadeer, we knew Mace would be personally traveling to take down the Ghost Rider himself.)

Image via ABC/Eric McCandless

So the three of them in one containment module means story time, right? But what we didn’t know is that the story of the Ghost Rider was the same story as the one that put Gabe in the wheelchair. And that story really doesn’t take more than a eight minute segment. i mena, good to know that Robbie died that night, and that the Ghost Rider that passed his ability into Robbie broguth him back to life as well. (For those craving continuity, we can assume if that Ghost Rider has a voice, it would have been that of Nicolas Cage.) So he truly believes he sold his soul to the devil. But that’s all we’ll really get of that tale. Because then Mace had to go an interrupt, while making every “stupid director” decision in the book, including ignoring Fitz, pissing off Robbie and making it so the Ghost Rider explodes from inside of him and breaks the containment module. (A module, we should remember that no Inhuman has broken before. perhaps the skull-on-fire is not the only compelling argument.) You know, and I was just starting to like Mace too. Quel dommage.

"Coulson: “The rationalist in me wants to agree. But you have to admit the skull on fire make a pretty compelling argument.”"

The fun really starts when the Ghost Rider and Mace go mano a mano in the middle of the Zephyr. Remember, Mace, being an Inhuman thinks he can take out fire headed friend. Mace is wrong. He’s losing, and badly….until Gabe screams out Robbie’s name and brings him back to himself. Gabe, for the record is intensely disappointed by all this. Jewish Mother level disappointed, and not just by the idea that Robbie is inhabited by the devil. The entire concept of vengeance for him offends him, that somehow Robbie has gone around killing in his name. Like we saw a few weeks back, Gabe thinks of himself as the stable one holding the family together, and being the rock for Robbie Now he sees his brother for the reality–a man gone off the rails, who wants to think of him as a victim. And Gabe ain’t having that.

Image via ABC

Once that’s out of the way, and Gabe is safely back home again, we can get on with this week’s plot. Fitz is allowed to go do his save the world thing, which, it turns out includes call back to Agent Carter‘s second (and last *sob*) season. For those who remember/watched last January, Isodyne was the big bad of the season working with Zero Matter or Dark Matter, which we were promised at the time would connect to Doctor Strange. Now Lucy and Eli are back in Isodyne’s labs trying to un-ghost her, with the Darkhold, which also is connected to Doctor Strange. They also reveal along the way that the “thugs” that night that attacked and caused Gabe to be the chair and Robbie to become the Rider were hired by Joe and Lucy. The threat of the plant exploding from their work manages, (once Mace stops being an idiot and listens Coulson about it), to supersede putting Robbie in prison, or down in general, or whatever it is Mace thinks he’s going to do to someone who can’t be contained by the most unbreakable module they have. The team is back together again, and taking it on the road.

"Lucy: You’re his nephew, Gabriel, like the angel.Robbie: No, I’m the other one."

Of course, by the time SHIELD arrives and Robbie confronts Lucy the Ghost to make her pay for her crimes, the truth is out in the past and in the present. Not about why Lucy and Joe hired the thugs, though we can guess it was to try and do something to get the attention, and perhaps stop the then out-of-control Eli. Yep, it wasn’t Joe who was the big bad back in the day. It was Morrow who was the one to put all those ghosts in the boxes. And now he has the Darkhold, the power and Lucy out of the way. All the work that Robbie, Coulson and Fitz are doing aren’t enough, and back in the Quinjet, Mack and May can’t get back fast enough. By the end of the episode, Coulson Fitz and Robbie have all disappeared (in the boxes and ghostly forms, we presume?) Eli has the power of the Darkhold inside him now. And he knows SHIELD has the book.

Next: Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD Season 4 Episode 5 Recap: “Lockup”

While all this is happening, Simmons got hooded and taken on her own mission. A team that trusts indeed. Can you blame her for telling the director to stuff it? He gets to go in his own Quinjet and she’s being shipped off blindfolded in the name of “working with the Government.” Considering that the last government we saw Mace have contact with was Nadeer, can you blame us (or Fitz, for that matter) for worrying? Sadly, for those hoping for a button scene, or a clue to where she’s gone, not to be. Instead, a clip from the upcoming Doctor Strange took that slot. (And no it didn’t tie into the Darkhold or Zero Matter or Isodyne.) Since Agents of SHIELD is now on hiatus until after Thanksgiving, it’s going to be a long wait for to find out where she went.