Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. wasted no time introducing Ghost Rider in the Season 4 premiere. At the conclusion of Season 3, Daisy/Quake was already on the run. This was six months after Daisy's heart was broken by the death of Lincoln, who sacrificed himself to destroy Hive and save the human race. Although pursued by Coulson and Mack, Daisy was able to escape just before they could capture her. Some things have changed for everyone at SHIELD as Season 4 begins, and throwing Ghost Rider into the mix only adds to the excitement.
NOTE: The following includes spoilers for Season 4, Episode 1 of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., "The Ghost," which originally aired on ABC on September 20.
Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes)Gabriel Luna plays the part of Robbie "Ghost Rider" Reyes in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and like many popular characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, his code of ethics seems questionable. Motivated by vengeance, he strikes fear into everyone he pursues. When confronted by Daisy, Robbie claims that he isn't the one who decides who he kills. As one victim is begging for his life, he claims that he "doesn't deserve to die." After remarking that "everyone says that," Ghost Rider proceeds to kill the white supremacist, who had been hired to deliver illegal weapons. Later, when he has the opportunity to kill Daisy, she tells him to go ahead and do it because she "deserves it." Upon hearing these words, he spares her life.
Unlike the Nicolas Cage/Johnny Blaze incarnation of Ghost Rider, Robbie Reyes elects for a souped-up 1969 Dodge Charger instead of a motorcycle. And as one of his victims tells Daisy just before dying, when the Ghost Rider wounds your body, he also wounds your soul.
Quake (Daisy Johnson)Chloe Bennet returns as Daisy, who is still acting on her own as a fugitive -- and Coulson is still determined to find her. She continues to be one step ahead of SHIELD, however, and seems to be doing alright on her own. Her exploits have been covered by the press, who nicknamed her "Quake." In an attempt to make up for the wrong she feels that she's responsible for, she has taken it upon herself to shut down the Watchdogs, a terrorist group who hate Inhumans.
Fitz And Simmons And The "Life Model Decoy"Both Fitz (Ian De Caestecker) and Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) have received promotions within SHIELD, and their romantic relationship has remained intact since viewers last saw them. However, Jemma's promotion to "Special Advisor to the Director in Science and Technology" (S.A.D.I.S.T.) has made her incredibly busy, which is a complete bummer for Leo Fitz. Her close relationship with the new Director -- whom viewers don't meet in the Season 4 premiere -- makes her seem untrustworthy to some others (specifically May) and gives her authority over some (specifically May) that leaves Simmons at least a little uncomfortable.
Meanwhile, Fitz discovers what many Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fans have been waiting for since the closing scene of Season 3. While visiting with Dr. Radcliffe (John Hannah), he is introduced to Aida, the latest version of the Life Model Decoy. Played by Mallory Jansen, the incredibly lifelike robot is the anthropomorphic iteration of the operating system SHIELD agents like Fitz have already been using. While Fitz is impressed by the experiment, the work was unauthorized and would almost certainly be frowned upon by the new Director. Unable to tell Simmons about it (since she would undoubtedly have to report it to her boss), he tells Radcliffe that he must keep Aida a secret until they have perfected her.
Phil Coulson And Melinda MayAs Season 3 was winding down, Director Coulson (Clark Gregg) was forced to accept a demotion. Now, he's simply "Agent Coulson." The new Director knows that he wants to save Daisy, and so he and Mack have been banned from anything related to her. That's difficult for Coulson to accept, especially when he finds out that orders have been given to kill Quake, if she can be found.
Meanwhile, Ming-Na Wen returns as Melinda May. Unsurprisingly, she doesn't trust the new Director and is willing to help Coulson track down Daisy by feeding him information to which he is not meant to be privy. Her working relationship with Jemma will surely ease up as the season progresses, and she's currently tasked with training the newest SHIELD recruits.
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Mack And Yo-YoAlso returning in the Season 4 premiere of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. are Mack (Henry Simmons) and Elena "Yo-Yo" Rodriguez (Natalia Cordova-Buckley). While sexual tension clearly remains between the two, Mack refuses to break protocol regarding agents fraternizing with assets. If she continues to push his buttons, however, it seems unlikely that he'll be able to resist the temptation.
Next Week On Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.The trailer for next week's episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is titled "Meet the Boss," where viewers will finally see Jason O'Mara make his MCU debut. As the trailer below indicates, it looks like Daisy will learn more about Ghost Rider's origins.
Next Week On Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesday evenings on ABC at 10:00 p.m. EST. Replays of the most recent episodes -- including the Season 4 premiere, "The Ghost" -- can be streamed on-demand the following day through ABC and Hulu. The first three seasons of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. -- which do not include Ghost Rider -- can be streamed on-demand via Netflix.
[Featured image via ABC/Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.]