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It's interesting that Lorelei took one of Loki's pathways from Asgard to Midgard. Since it happened during the attack of the dark elves, Loki would have had no time to spare during the whole thing to be planning alternate plans. This means that someone else knows about his pathways. Unless, it was Loki-as-Odin who told her about it but this leads to another question: why did he let such a secret go, as Odin?
  • Alternative theory: She just accidentally discovered a pathway. The pathways are called "Loki's" by Sif, but it is hinted that these connections between the Nine Realms simply naturally exist and that he just happens to know about them; he might even once accidentally discovered one himself. So while Lorelei didn't initially plan to take over earth, she just took her chance when she realised where she ended up while she was just fleeing from prison while everyone was distracted.

Wild Mass Guessing over Lorelei and Sif.
Lorelei and Sif will appear in episode 15, so here are some theories:

If Loki appears, then his schemes will be less dangerous and menacing.
Loki will be a Harmless Villain, whose "evil" plans will basically amount to Poke the Poodle. Since he's already got the throne of Asgard, he doesn't need to go after petty humans unless it's for the lulz.
  • There is simply no way the show can afford Tom Hiddleston, even as a cameo. Plus Loki is dead as of Infinity War.

It isn't that impossible to believe that Lorelei is The Enchantress but under a different name. We'll have to wait until much later to find out if this is true, but its doubtful since Amora is by far the more popular of the two, and Lorelei is acting closer to her comic-book self.

Professor Randolph is Balder
Randolph says that he didn't know Thor and that he was just a mason, but maybe movie Odin was simply more committed to hiding Balder's identity than comic Odin. It would explain why we haven't seen Balder in Thor movies so far.

Loki will more friendly with Lorelei in this version, that in the comic.
In the comics Loki was abusive with Lorelei. But as this version of Loki is more Affably Evil, then his relationship with Lorelei will be friendlier.

Tobias Ford was trapped on Muspelheim
Of all the Asgardian realms, Muspelheim is easily the most likely one would mistake for the traditional Fire and Brimstone Hell. It is the primordial realm of fire, after all, and is basically Jotunheim's mirror in climate. Lava, soot, fire giants, probably other devil-like races or critters about, who could blame the guy who making such an interpretation?

    Future Characters 

This series will be used to show different heroes and villains in the extended Marvel Universe
  • Black Panther
    • Getting his own movie in Phase 3, as it turns out, but still not impossible.
  • Luke Cage
    • He's getting his own series as it turns out, but it's possible.
  • The Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver; to set up their appearance in Avengers 2.
    • They were seen in the stinger for Winter Soldier, so they've already been set up.
    • Wanda survived the Battle of Sokovia and joined the Avengers, but her brother is dead. Aaron Taylor Johnson signed a deal for more appearances as the character but Kevin Feige insists that "[he] is DEAD. 100%, he's not coming back any time soon, there are no plans. No life-model decoy, no escaping bullets, no retcon".
  • Iron Man; His appearances will make up for the lack of Sequel Hook in Iron Man 3.
    • Died in Endgame, so not gonna happen unless it's a flashback.
  • Doc Samson and Red She Hulk; they will help Shield in order to keep contact with Banner.
  • She-Hulk; maybe as an origin episode.
  • Iron Fist; also getting his own series.
  • Eric O'Grady, but not as Ant-Man
  • Quake; turns out she's been in the show the whole time.
  • Cloak and Dagger
    • These two are probably the most likely of any. Whoever are running project Centipede were clearly targeting down-on-their-luck, desperate people as test subjects. Testing synthetic drugs on runaway teens, along the lines of Cloak and Dagger's origin story, wouldn't be too far a stretch from them.
    • They have a series officially in development on Freeform. A spin-off from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. would be a good launching pad.
  • Howard the Duck
    • Even in comics, it's an official policy of S.H.I.E.L.D. that "the Duck man from Cleveland" is an Un-person. However, it could be fun as a Running Gag.
    • Going off this, maybe the team will be called in to investigate a dimensional lapse, and find a talking duck having trouble ordering lunch at a restaurant.
    • He is canon now, so it's possible.
  • Jason Strongbow, aka American Eagle; Complete with his Cool Helmet and Badass Biker outfit from Thunderbolts.
  • Blade
    • Getting his own movie.
  • Daredevil
    • Another hero getting his own series. But a cameo or crossover, again, isn't out of the question.
  • The Punisher
    • He appears in the Daredevil series and will receive his own spinoff.
  • Man-Thing
    • Man-Thing is mentioned by Maria Hill in the episode "Nothing Personal".
  • Fans are still holding out for Carol Danvers to get her own movie as Captain Marvel, but an Early-Bird Cameo would be nice. Particularly since there's now two other characters running around with Kree material of some kind in their blood.
    • DC's Shazam! movie is in the works, so this might get held up a bit.
    • Captain Marvel (Carol) will be getting her own movie in Phase 3!
    • And now it's released.
  • Coulson found a dead Kree in the Guest House, which implies a UFO crash. And "Providence" name-dropped the Cube prison. What Kree character was the only survivor of a crash on Earth, and did time in the Cube? Noh-Varr.
  • Ulysses Solomon Archer (aka US 1)
  • Stingray
  • Captain Britain, possibly descended from Falsworth.
  • Doctor Strange
    • Captain America: The Winter Soldier has revealed that he does exist in the MCU, though he hasn't appeared yet, and is still a very brilliant (and incredibly arrogant) neurosurgeon.
      • He's getting his own movie in Phase 3.
  • Doctor Druid
  • The Incredible Hercules
  • Elektra
    • She appears on the Daredevil series
  • Maybe sometime we'll hear about Agent James Woo and his team from the 50s - Ken Hale, Bob Grayson, Venus, Namora and M-11.
    • Jimmy Woo appeared in Ant-Man and the Wasp, but he looks too young to have been active in the fifties.
  • Jim Hammond/The Android Human Torch
    • He made a cameo in Captain America: The First Avenger, on display in the Stark Expo. Maybe he's one of those "Gifted" that the SSR approached before they called themselves "S.H.I.E.L.D". Or perhaps The Invaders were set up after the war, seeing how Hank Pym and his wife were active during the Cold War up to the 80s.
  • Agent Crimson or someone else to serve as the team's magic expert.
  • Hit-Monkey: Fitz will finally get that trained monkey he wanted.
  • Isaiah Bradley
  • Night Thrasher
  • Merlin
  • Black Knight (Dane Whitman)
  • Shang-Chi
    • Getting his own movie.
  • Whazzaaaaap, troopers! It's me, Deadpool! Just here to say that since I'm not a mutant and have really evolved beyond the X-Men mythos and become a great franchise in my own right, I would ROCK in this show! How about Wade Wilson, Rogue Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.? They did it in that cartoon show!
    • Little White Thought Box: Deadpool, it's impossible. You were in that Wolverine movie. Even if it wasn't really you and just some in-name bastard, the lawyers say no.
    • Deadpool: What, so Magneto's kids can be in an Avengers movie just by slapping the von Strucker twins' origin on them, and I can't? Just swap out Wolverine's DNA for some of that alien-from-Tahiti blood (it's shown to be mind-expanding, so it would explain how I got my hands on the script), and we're good!
    • Little White Thought Box: You already got your own kick ass movie which placed you firmly in Fox's hands, you most likely have a sequel in the works, so we may not be able to get your awesome self on the show...sorry.
    • Deadpool: Well, Disney bought Fox, so now it's no longer an issue!
  • Blazing Skull
  • Quasar, since "Professor Vaughn" mentioned in "0-8-4" and "Seeds" could be Gilbert Vaughn, Wendell Vaughn's father.
  • Speedball
  • Stripperella, who became a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent after FUGG went bankrupt from a lawsuit and S.H.I.E.L.D. had to buy them to save their jobs.
  • Triathalon
  • Wonder Man, although he could also be a villain.
    • A deleted scene in Guardians Vol 2 shows that Simon Williams does exist, but the canonicity of said scene (as well as if he has any powers) is up in the air.
  • Captain Universe
  • Darcy (Thor movies). Can you imagine just how well Skye and her would hit it off??? If not, try this.
  • Damage Control
  • Ka-Zar
  • Shanna the She-Devil
  • Moon Knight
  • Misty Knight
  • Squirrel Girl
    • Her entry on S.H.I.E.L.D's Gifted index can use her Memetic Badass joke by listing her as the most powerful person on the index.
    • She'll be a main character on Freeform's New Warriors show.
  • Jack Russell
  • Namor, although he could be a villain too...
  • Toro/Thomas Raymond, the sidekick to the Android Human Torch. He was recently revealed to have Inhuman Genes as well, so he could be very important.


  • Ultron; although they might use him for Avengers 2
    • Annnnd Ultron's in Avengers 2. He's dead, but again, he's very, very smart...
  • Baron Von Strucker; he is Nick Fury's Arch-Enemy.
    • We saw him in the Stinger of The Winter Soldier. He is mentioned as one of the important HYDRA leaders during season 2, but he turns out to be just a Villain of Another Story, as he appears in Age of Ultron, and may not be appearing again. We got to see his unworthy son in the series, still.
    • He's also going to be in Avengers 2. Then he died. But his actor also signed a multi-film contract. His son showed up in Season 3. Then Wolfgang himself showed up in a flashback in Season 5.
  • The Leader; according to the one shot Avengers prequel comic, he was placed in Shield Custody. Maybe he's in HYDRA's hands now.
  • General Ross/ Red Hulk, who is also going to be in Captain America: Civil War.
  • Kang The Conqueror as a season's Big Bad.
  • Oblivion, who will be the show's version of The First.
  • Joss will be dropping hints that Aldrich Killian isn't the Mandarin and the true one is still out there or that someone has inherited the title of the Mandarin.
    • An Expy of the comic book Mandarin. This one will be closer to the original Mandarin (an East Asian guy with ten Rings of Power) rather than the film version. However, he won't be called "the Mandarin" and will instead go by one of the other names that the Mandarin has used, such as Tem Borjigin.
    • This has been semi-confirmed. The 'real' Mandarin does exist and is a lot closer to the original from the comics, but is also still calling himself the Mandarin.
      • He's been set aside for the Shang-Chi movie.
  • Fin Fang Foom.
  • Grim Reaper
  • Purple Man. He would be easy on the special effects budget.
  • Moonstone
  • Marvel's version of Dracula. The Buffy reference would be too good for Joss to resist.
  • Red Skull, back from wherever he got Bifrosted by the Tesseract to. Probably played by a different actor.
    • Unless the show somehow goes to Vormir, jossed.
  • The Hate Monger. Who knows, maybe Captain America will appear in an episode and punch out Hitler for real.
  • Ghost, possibly as an affiliate of the Rising Tide
  • M.O.D.O.C., the new leader of AIM. (Or, rather, George Tarleton, but he mutates himself into M.O.D.O.C.)
    Tarleton: I am a far more superior leader than Aldritch Killian ever was, because I am not using AIM's resources for revenge on a harmless practical joke!
    Coulson: I don't disagree...
  • Loki. The guy (sort of) killed Coulson, he's already been referred to many times if not by name... Plus, he's one of the most popular characters in the Cinematic universe.
    • Tom Hiddleston himself has expressed interest in such an idea.
    • Lady Loki: A Clone of Loki or Lady Sif. As of the end of Dark World he's posing as Odin, and ruling Asgard unbeknownst to anyone. In all likelihood, it was him who sent Lady Sif to capture Lorelei, which means there's a high chance that he knows Coulson's alive.
  • Zzzax. We were expecting him/it for F.Z.Z.T.
  • Arnim Zola in his famous face-on-a-robot's-chest form.
  • The Super-Adaptoid. Because its main ability is Power Copying, a team full of ordinary humans would likely be the best choice to defeat it. The Super-Adaptoid will defeat whatever super tries to beat it only to be brought down by ordinary humans. This would fit nicely with the show's theme that "Not all heroes are super."
  • Klaw
    • Appeared in Age of Ultron, where he had his arm cut off by Ultron. It's possible that he could appear in the show getting his signature artificial replacement before showing up in the Black Panther movie.
      • Got killed off in Panther's solo movie. So very unlikely
  • Batroc
    • He's going to be in The Winter Soldier.
  • Crossbones
    • Also in The Winter Soldier.
    • Died in Civil War, so unlikely.
  • Black Knight (Nathan Garrett)
  • The High Evolutionary, who is responsible for the powers of Scorch and several other "gifted" individuals.
  • Juggernaut. Unlike the the other live-action version, this one will be closer to the comic book version to avoid violating Fox's right to mutants. It would be great for someone to finally remember that Juggernaut is not a mutant. The only problem is, would the plane survive Juggie making some 'unwanted advances' to it?
    • He was in Deadpool 2, and already closer to the comics, so unless Agents decided to touch upon his relationship with Professor X (which the film implied, but didn't outright state), it would be redundant.
  • It's been confirmed that the Iron Man villain Blizzard will make an appearance. "Seeds" is his origin story back when he was just Donny Gills.
  • Bullseye
  • Madame Masque
    • Appeared in Agent Carter.
  • Titanium Man
  • Controller
  • Bi-Beast
  • U-Foes
  • Ultimo
  • Ymir
  • Mangog
  • Ulik
  • Surtur
  • Baron Zemo
    • Confirmed to be appearing in Captain America: Civil War.
  • Iron Cross
  • Taskmaster
  • Killer Shrike
  • Unicorn
  • Doctor Demonicus, a geneticist and would be responsible for other super empowered beings.
  • Machete (either of the Lopez brothers: Ferdinand, Alfonzo or Mariano)
  • Nitro
  • The Winter Soldier himself. Last seen going on a quest to regain his missing memories and quit being a villain. It wouldn't be too surprising if the team runs into him at some point. Plus it would be another fanboy moment for Coulson to see that the Bucky Barnes is still alive. It would also parallel quite well with Triplett's grandfather in the Howling Commandos, who Bucky would have been close with. Third, how awesome would it be to see The Winter Soldier go up against Agent May?
    • In the comics, Bucky is good friends with both Quake and Mockingbird; given their presence in the show, it wouldn't be surprising to see him drop by and establish said friendship.
  • The Pride. One of the few cops they haven't paid off or killed off yet calls in The Team to help with a criminal organization with considerable power but unusually small reach. They may or may not be working for the Gibborim, who would still be aiming to destroy the world. Their children will also do what they do, causing trouble both for The Pride and Coulson's team.
    • They're set to appear in Hulu's Runaways series.
  • Hyperion
  • Korvac
  • The Sentry, due to his Superpowered Evil Side.
  • Namor will probably start off as one, perhaps attacking Team Coulson or the entire Helicarrier out of another oxygen imbalance and curb-stomping everyone else before someone manages to stop him.
  • Maximus the Mad
    • Set to appear in The Inhumans.

Raina and Skye are either sisters or clones
It explains her shock when she analyzes Skye's DNA and why she alludes to Skye being 'someone similar' to her. They have the same parent, or are genetically engineered metahumans from another metahuman's DNA. Raina also knew about the massacre of the village to get to Skye...because she was still living with her parents or someone in their inner circle, and heard about it. It partially explains her quest to find unique people: because she's also looking for her family, same as Skye. Also, their names. Skye. Raina. Sky and Rain.
  • Close. They are both Inhumans.

Either Fitz or Simmons will become a Ghost Rider
  • It's clearly being built up that Fitz will have severe brain damage by the time season 2 begins. Either him or Simmons will be unable to handle his condition, and they'll be offered a deal by Mephisto: heal Fitz in return for their soul. Of course the person who makes the deal won't realize the side effects of it. Furthermore, Ghost Rider is a character similar to Deathlok in which the legacy of the character can easily be passed on to Canon Immigrants.
  • They could cut out the supernatural elements and make it more of a Johnny-Ketch style Ultimate Ghost Rider, who becomes a Ghost Rider-ish Machine Man. This would work a bit better for a computer genius.

Grant Ward will become the MCU version of Paladin
Paladin in the comics is a highly skilled mercenary who is shown to work with heroes just as often as he works with villains. He's an exceptional liar/actor/espionage specialist and has a history of having his judgement heavily influenced by women he's in love with. Additionally, not only is Ward the only main cast member note  of the show not to appear in the new 616-universe Agents of SHIELD comic (either because he's HYDRA and they didn't feel like rehashing that plot element in the book or because like Skye he's not a Canon Foreigner), but also... nobody in the comics actually knows what Paladin's real name is. He's given it as "Paul Denning" before, but this is suggested to be a fake name. In-show, it would make sense for him to choose the name "Paladin" as a reflection of the "true hero" he really wants to be, but in practice, he's still an aimless merc whose loyalty is up for grabs. Bonus points for possibly using an old ICER as the MCU version of Paladin's "Stun-Gun".

Agent 33 will become Madame Masque
If she can't shake off the HYDRA brainwashing, she'll eventually get a mask for her face to keep people from thinking she's May.
  • In "Love in the Time of Hydra", when Talbot found out she infiltrated his base he called her a "damn mask".
  • Comic-Book Movies Don't Use Codenames, but it appears as though she is the MCU's counterpart for this character.

Xiaoyi/Iso will appear in Lai Xi
As one of the only known Chinese Inhuman in the comics, it'd be fitting for her to appear there (assuming it is in China). She could even be related to Skye and Jiaying.

In season 3 or 4, the team will get a C-List Magic Expert on their Team
Scarlet Witch has made her debut, and Doctor Strange will be making his around the time the fourth season would be premiering (if they get that far). With the growing need to deal with magical threats, Coulson's team will need to find an expert to help them out. One possiblity is Shaman, since Alpha Flight likely won't be making an appearance in anyone else's movies.

    Project Centipede 

The friend Edison Po blinded was Gustav Brant.
Going back to Zodiac, the blind Brant became Libra.

Project Centipede did not originate from Earth.
Not the formula, the project itself. The Clairvoyant is an alien who came to Earth after the Chitauri attack, the reason being that the Clairvoyant needed an expendable race that couldn't fight back if Project Centipede was revealed/deployed to the public, namely humanity. Edison Po and Raina are both members of the Clairvoyant's race, but disguised as humans, explaining the duress under pressure. Scientists like Debbie are human, and are therefore expendable. As for the formula, it's derived from 4 known sources of superpower: Super Soldier Serum, gamma radiation, Chitauri technology, and Extremis. The makeup of the SSS was lost when Erksine was killed, and people are still trying to work it out. It's unlikely that the members of Project Centipede could have deciphered it. The Clairvoyant could have unlocked the formula by brain-probing Erksine while he was alive, without his knowledge.

Related to the above: Project Centipede was started by the Kree.
It would not be the first time they tried to give powers to humans in order to turn them into weapons.

Centipede created Deathlok to be the next superpowered assassin because The Winter Soldier
was deemed impure.Dethlok has some similarities to The Winter Soldier. They have both lost limbs and were brainwashed by the organizations to become an assassin. If Centipede is a HYDRA operation, they need a back up man now that the Winter Soldier has gone off the grid, having saved Steve and all that...

    Coulson's Death and Resurrection 

Akela saw something mechanical inside of Coulson.
As implied by her final lines to May ("no, what did they do to him?"), she saw something inside his body with her mechanical eye's alternate vision. Either an artificial heart as mentioned above, or some kind of device attached to his brain that is responsible for altering his memories.

Coulson has a mechanical heart.
Just like Picard when he got stabbed by a Nausicaan as an Ensign, when Coulson got stabbed through the heart by Loki they quickly replaced it with an artificial one.

Coulson made a contract with one of the Incubators
He survived being stabbed because his Soul Gem was unharmed. They just repaired his body and then he was fine. The higher-ups don't want him to know since everyone else who's been informed of the true nature of the Soul Gem has had a freakout.Combining this a bit with the "Coulson is psychic" guess in the "Other" section, the reason that he is so aware of everything on seemingly so little clues is because something about his wish gave him psychic powers or he has just figured out how to use magic to see these things.
  • For extra fun, his wish was to bring Captain America home to New York (meaning the body but accidentally saving his life since he turned out to be alive, or else he just wished to save him outright and his wish was powerful enough to reach back in time).
Camilla notes that Coulson has a 'renewed idealism' and Amadar wonders if someone 'did something' to him because he's nicer and more forgiving than she remembers. It's possible that Coulson was emotionally conditioned while in Tahitil to believe that Hope Springs Eternal as a safeguard against despair. A second safeguard is all the old things on The Bus; he's surrounded by physical reminders of the Good Old Ways and thus how Good Is Old-Fashioned.

The reason why Coulson has no muscle Memory is because his muscles were rebuilt
After around three months, your body is completely decomposed and there is just a skeleton. Or at least your far enough along that a good chunk of your muscles are gone. The series works as about real time. It's been a bit over a year since The Avengers. And Coulson did not comeback immediately, he came back only a few weeks ago. SHIELD contacted someone (Doctor Strange, Mephisto, Enchantress, possibly Brother Voodoo, etc) to bring him back. While they brought him back completely, the various muscles and tendons had to be rebuilt, which would have erased the "muscle memory" as it wore,or the brain was far enough decomposed it rebuilt itself as a bit of a blank slate (see "The Enemy Within" in Captain Marvel). The Tahiti memories are not only fake, they were built to cover up the trauma of him coming back and as an excuse for the physical therapist thing. Or the Therapist could be whomever brought him back. Either way, decomposition is what caused him to lose the muscle memory.

Coulson is a Time Lord
Lola is his Tardis. When Loki stabbed him, he just regenerated back into himself. Somehow.

Coulson really did die, but was brought back Project Lazarus style.
His implants were seen by Akela with her x-ray vision, which is what she mentioned to Melinda. Besides, he seems to have enhanced reflexes, as seen in the pilot when he dodged a flying van door. It remains to be seen if or when he'll show any other enhanced abilities.
  • Close. Project Lazarus =/= Project T.A.H.I.T.I.

Coulson is the current vessel for the entity Eternity
While Eternity's been grooming him as a vessel for a while (which is why he was tangentially involved in each Avenger's life) when he died, Eternity got Coulson's soul and healed the body. "Tahiti" is where the two managed to equalize themselves. The bright light was Eternity itself (and why it felt longer. It was, literally, eternity) and why Coulson isn't exactly the same. It's not just him in the body anymore.

"Coulson" is a Skrull sleeper agent
He has all of Coulson's memories, but doesn't remember that he's a Skrull. When he finds out, it will lead to him Becoming the Mask. The Skrull letters on the chalkboard in "Eye Spy" could have been foreshadowing.

Coulson was brought back using Hydra Tech
The ultimate Captain America fanboy would be horrified by being kept alive by something made by such an evil organisation, especially if its creation involved unwilling human experimentation. SHIELD repressed his memories of what was done to try and save him the guilt of knowing how he was brought back. If it's some sort of device, it could also be what his protege saw in him in "Eye Spy".
  • Considering the events of The Winter Soldier, this might be true. It could be tech based on Hydra experiments at least.

Coulson is a Super-Soldier and he was in the Captain America movie.
It isn't enough that Coulson came back. If they had that technology to bring everyone back then there would be no death at all in Shield. You croak, ok, you'll be fine in a week. Not just anyone can be brought back, but Coulson isn't just anyone.Sometime after Captain America got frozen, another scientist wanting to recreate the supersoldier serum and succeeded in the prototype phase with human testing. It didn't work after that because of a specific set of required traits that the original serum also needed. But it worked for a young Private Coulson who had those traits.Private Coulson signed on to join the program to follow in the footsteps of his childhood hero. Listen to him talk to Steve and the reverence he has in his eyes. There's only two ways someone would regard someone else like that: Either they fall in love with the person which isn't likely here, or if their life was saved. Phil Coulson was saved by Steve when Steve got his powers because he was the little boy the Hydra Agent took hostage. He was personally there to witness the man, be saved, and ultimately hero worship in a way no one else could possibly understand because they were never there.Coulson can be brought back to life for the same reason Steve was able to wake up from being turned into a capsicle. Because the serum allows it.

The 7 Surgeries
Dr. Streiten tells Coulson that there were six failed attempts to revive him; right before the brain surgery scene (which merely altered his memories to erase the trauma of the surgeries), there are 6 brief flashes of scientific and medical equipment that are implied to be the previous attempts and appear to be:And the successful one (#7) is as of this writing, unknown.

Captain America knows Coulson is alive even before the events in Winter Soldier
Information on Coulson being alive is restricted to Level 7 clearance and as shown in Winter Soldier Cap is Level 8. He knows, he's just forced not to make contact due to protocols.

    Skye/Daisy Johnson 
Skye is part of the extremely complicated Tangled Family Tree that binds the X-Men and the Avengers
You know, the one with Hank Pym being married to Jan van Dyne and creating Ultron, who created Vision, who married Scarlet Witch, sister of Quicksilver and daughter of Magneto.

Skye thinks Coulson is her father.
Regardless of whether or not he actually is, she considers it a fairly strong possibility. This would explain why she specifically sent her messages to him, when she theoretically could have made the same threat to any SHIELD official, including some with much more clout than Coulson. (Let's face it, Nick Fury himself probably would have stood up and paid attention if he thought there was even a slight chance Skye had confidential SHIELD info to leak. He even explicitly calls her "a risk" during his appearance at the end of Episode 2.) The fact that a bona fide badass who regularly deals with aliens, gods, and other super-beings thinks of a run-of-the-mill human armed with an old laptop as a risk says something about her. She could have easily gotten to the SHIELD higher ups if she wanted to dig up info on the redacted file. Instead, she inserted herself into Coulson's team. There has to be a reason behind her specifically choosing him and "I think he's my father" is as good a reason as any.

Part of Skye's metahuman DNA involves the ability to charm people
As mentioned, Skye is sometimes considered a Mary Sue. Perhaps this is deliberate because her origins give her an innate ability to charm people into liking her.

Skye has healing powers
In "The Magical Place", she pulls Coulson out of the vision he's seeing, telling him to "come back" over and over again. When she did this, she subconsciously triggered her own powers (which were the reason someone killed an entire village to get to her when she was an infant and reversed the effect that the machine had on Coulson.

Skye is subconsciously influencing people to protect her.
Whatever her powers are, one of them might be way to force people to protect her. As a kind of Charm Person. In T.A.H.I.T.I the whole team goes above and beyond desperate measures to save her (raid a medical compound and kill the guards? They even break out the heavy rifles instead of their usual stun weaponry) and while this makes sense for some of them, it's suspicious of May to suddenly go apeshit on the guy who shot her when she earlier didn't seem to like her much. It was even more suspect that Garrett and his assistant who don't even know her almost immediately decide to help Coulson upon hearing about Skye's condition, almost magically. And twice later Simmons is stumped, thinks of what Skye would do, and then immediately has the answer. This would also explain why a whole village and a squad of shield agents were willing to die for her as a baby. Skye herself probably doesn't know this but its so strong she can do it even on the brink of death.
  • This theory is more solid after the events of 1.16, where Ward kills the fake Clairvoyant after he threatens Skye. Even the other characters point out that it's uncharacteristic of the usually stoic Ward to lose his cool like that.
  • The reactions of both Garet and his assistant, and especially May seem far too abrupt to be reasonable even under the circumstances. Though the justification given for Garet seems to be that he's lost enough people to the Clairvoyant already, May has no such explanation, and is even aware that her choice to attack Quin - for no reason other than the fact he shot Skye - made no sense. The contrast to her usual manner is far too jarring for Defrosting Ice Queen or Character Development to cover it.

The reason why Skye unpersoned herself for the first time was to destroy all evidence of the name given to her by the orphanage
With a name like Mary Sue Poots, can you blame her?

Skye’s 0-8-4 power is that she is a Black Hole Sue.
No. seriously, it might happen. So far EVERYONE has eventually come around to liking her and anyone who ever didn’t was portrayed as in the wrong until they changed their minds. However, instead of this just being bad writing on their part, this is her 0-8-4 power messing with people's minds. Fuelled by feelings of abandonment and loneliness when she was a child, her power manipulated reality without her knowing it. Feelings of abandonment as an orphan? No! It's okay! She has a tragic unknown backstory which causes the rest of the main cast to become the family she wishes she had. Even Ward and May, who never had any plans on getting too attached to her (especially Ward), become her big brother and mother figures. Add to that that she’s Conveniently an Orphan, Raised by S.H.I.E.L.D who were also killed off, off-screen, before the plot started and you can see that while her 0-8-4 is trying to ‘fix’ her life, it’s not good at it. For instance, it makes her beautiful while homeless and capable of hacking SHIELD with a garden-variety laptop. She starts as mildly unrealistic and escalating from there into god-like because its feeding her escalating desire to be useful to and needed by her new "family". Her 0-8-4 contrives situations where she is the only one that can save the day. What’s scary, and probably going to be the main plot point is that while Skye might not be aware of it, her power might be aware of her. In fact, it might be mildly self-aware to the point that it acknowledges what it’s doing by giving her the ‘real’ name of ‘Mary Sue Poots’ before then allowing her the 'cool' name of Skye. Her 0-8-4 power is the ability to subconsciously manipulate reality to make her the main character with the true companions that she always wanted when she was little and alone. On a lighter note, it could also be TV tropes has been given god like form. Either one is fine.
  • It wouldn't be the first time this has happened in a Joss Whedon show. Remember Jonathan's Reality Warper spell? Picture that as a constantly active superpower.
  • Her supposed "birth" father might have the same ability, but either on a smaller scale, as shown with Reina, and/or on the exact opposite polarity. Worse yet, unlike Skye, he can actively control this power.

When Skye alters the records so that a person with her birth name exists, Skye will become her middle name
It gives her a reason why she answers to it - lots of people in history have answered to their middle names - and it also means that her dad has no grounds to flip out if someone calls her Skye in his hearing, as that will be part of her name.

Skye will become the Director of SHIELD
Being an agent has already taken quite a toll on Coulson, the day may come when he wants to step down or is otherwise incapacitated. Skye has been told repeatedly that she's shaping up to be a great leader. It would also nicely mirror her counterpart in the comics.

By the very end of the series, Skye will be left as the Sole Survivor of Team Coulson.
That would be a rare non-slasher movie example of the Final Girl trope; she would also be the one to defeat the show's final Big Bad, and, in the final scene, wind up back in the main timeline, seeing S.H.I.E.L.D. rebuilding in outer space.

    Season 1- 2 Hiatus Theories 

The Koenigs aren't siblings.
They're truly a series of LMDs (highly humanesque robots would dovetail nicely with AoU) and there will be a new one at every single top secret SHIELD facility they visit. They even have blood. The reasons they are both Coulson fanboys is because Coulson is Fury's "One Good Eye" and he wants them to be personally loyal to Coulson, after himself. Their welcoming speech was exactly the same. As in, word by word the same. It's programming.
  • The SDCC promo showed yet another Clone-ig. More evidence for this theory?
  • Triplett is freaked out by how all these brothers look and act the same. Apparently, he has shared his own WMGs with Skye and it's beginning to annoy her.

Ward will become the new Big Bad.
The expression on his face when Coulson confronts him could suggest he's plotting his revenge on the heroes. This will also be a great way to subvert the expectation that he will go through a long redemption arc similar to Faith or Spike.
  • The ending on Season 2 makes it very likely.

Fitz could be brought back as an LMD.
The Koenigs seem very suspiciously LMD-like, especially with the SDCC promo. So, why not Fitz? Fitz-as-LMD could end up being a thing; we only have Fury's word for it that he's alive, and I'd be counting my fingers after shaking hands with that one-eyed lying sumbitch. Fitz could have turned out to be brain dead, and Fury quickly swaps him out for an identical LMD, whose dearths in knowledge and memory could be chalked up to aforementioned brain damage. But why would Fury do this? Because his one good eye still needs May's team to watch him for any GH-325 side effects, and fix him if need be. Going by the finale stinger, that might be sooner rather than later.

Stark already knows that Coulson's alive
Really, S.H.I.E.L.D. didn't go to all that great lengths to cover up his resurrection from other people. Stark likely saw a news clip or picture of Coulson, figured it out, and then didn't say anything because it's Coulson's business to tell him.

We'll learn more about May's mother
Including who she works for.
  • Not in Season 2, but it did happen early in Season 3.

Tripplett's grandfather isn't Gabe Jones, but Jaques Dernier.
Given his very french name and the large black population in France, it's not too much of a stretch. (Plus, making the black guy the grandson of the only black Commando is a little obvious, and we know how much this show loves its twists.)

    The "Real" S.H.I.E.L.D. 

Real SHIELD and Coulson's SHIELD will eventually resolve their differences with civilty
Instead of coming to blows any further, the two factions will talk it out and eventually reach some level of understanding; Gonzales will prove that he's legitimate in his claims about loyalty and fair treatment of the agents while Coulson will prove he's perfectly capable and trustworthy of running SHIELD. The two will reach some kind of peace and either merge or co-exist as separate entities, after taking some pointers from each other on their respective failings. Because there's no reason they can't resolve this like adults and find some way to do it without any further conflict.
  • Confimed!

Bobbi and Mack will defect to Coulson's SHIELD
Pretty self-explanatory, despite claiming that his 'Real' SHIELD is diplomatic, Gonzales seems to dislike or outright ignore the input from others and is displaying a lot of fantastic racism towards Skye and Coulson - Bobbi and Mack, who know them better, are eventually gonna see just how broken this 'Real' SHIELD is, and how built on hypocrisy it is, eventually.
  • More like they resolve their differences peacefully.

Alternatively, Bobbi will defect, but Mack won't.
Having one of them stick with Gonzales permanently will add weight to the situation. Of the two of them Mack seems more likely, since we're already getting signs that Bobbi isn't completely on board with some of 'real' SHIELD's actions, but none for Mack. Also, losing Mack would hurt Fitz, and Fitz must suffer. Always.
  • Close. Mack is very distrustful of Coulson and therefore resigns... right before Retirony nearly gets him, after which he chooses to stay.

May will join the "real" S.H.I.E.L.D. council
Then she'll demand the impeachment of Gonzales for a laundry list of charges. The sheer number of hypocrisies will gain her a number of allies and this could either lead to a successful impeachment or a civil war within "real" S.H.I.E.L.D.


Scorch is an Inhuman.
The nuclear power plant that melted down near his birthplace was actually a secret lab researching the Terrigen Mists. This is why he was the only one affected.

The city revealed in the alien writing isn't Attilan
...It's Orollan: the Inhuman city that not even the Attilan residents knew about. It's quite a bit different from the culture of Attilan, since it only has a limited supply of Terrigen and therefore the residents only allow those they deem worthy to undergo Terrigenesis - seems pretty close to how Skye's dad described the Diviner.

The Alien was trying to destroy the mystery city
That was why it was so frantic to get there. Something time-sensitive was about to occur that the alien was trying to stop. There are many possiblities: the inhabitants posed a threat to Earth or the alien's own race, or maybe they found something they weren't supposed to, or both. If the theory that the city is Attilan is true, then perhaps it was racing to stop them from discovering Terrigenesis.

Trip isn't dead, and is in fact another Inhuman.
B.J. Britt has been on the set of Age of Ultron, so there's already that going for him. Plus, when he went down the hole into the city, possessed Mack didn't start hunting him down or trying to stop him from reaching the temple, as he did Coulson. There's several things supporting this theory:
  • In the comics, there's an African-American Inhuman codenamed Hollow whose powers make him intangible. That could be why we see nothing after Trip's cocoon cracks open. It's writer slight-of-hand.
  • As noted above, nothing hinders Trip from being in the inner sanctum with Skye and Raina, even though it's been indicated that no one who's not "chosen" could get that far. They gave Trip and FitzSimmons a reason for being able to get down there with the hazmat suits, but then take away that reason when Trip goes back down there alone. Either that's very poor storytelling, or he was allowed to get in there for a very specific reason, and it'd have to be for a more specific reason than just to show that Anyone Can Die.
  • At the end when the Eyeless Man (Gordon) is on the phone, he says there's "someone" new. Not the singular, even though it was two people, Skye and Raina, who transformed simultaneously. If Eyeless Man(Gordon) has any contact with Skye's father, than Skye and Raina could've been highly anticipated to come down there and become Inhuman. The "someone new" could refer to Trip, the one person no one had anticipated would be down there.
  • Finally, the official "Farewell to BJ" video ends with Clark Gregg declaring his refusal to move on and holding up the #Trip Lives hashtag. The fact that he was allowed to do that in an official video, the very fact that it's him doing it, indicates this is just like #Coulson Lives all over again: a popular supporting character, supposedly Killed Off for Real to generate demands that he come back, so fans will be all the more overjoyed when he does come back, just like it had been planned all along.

Mac will turn out to be an Inhuman, and has a Tomato in the Mirror discovery in his future
Since he was the member of the team most thoroughly repelled by the idea of Coulson being treated with alien blood, naturally, he will turn out to be the one with some alien DNA of his own.

The Eyeless Man isn't gonna be a villain
While yes, he may be initially hostile towards Team Coulson, he'll ultimately be on the level. The others referred to by him are likely other Inhumans he's been in contact with for quite sometime, and they'll for sure seek out Daisy. However, that won't make any of them villains. It could just be for a simple gathering of all Inhumans.
  • More like Well-Intentioned Extremist.

Lai Xi isn't in China
Skye (and possibly other new Inhumans as well) is merely told that Lai Xi is there, and that only Gordon can reach it, because the Elders don't want her to try to escape the place.

The 'Elders' Gordon mentioned answer to the Inhuman royal family, if they're not the family itself
Comic readers will recognize that Black Bolt (arguably the most famous Inhuman) is the king of the Inhuman society in Attilan. Given that it would be impossible to get everyone of Inhuman descent onto said land, it's likely these 'Elders' look after the ones that are still on Earth for the royal family; keeping them in line, mentioning key activities etc.
  • The 'Elders' could be the Genetic Council from the comics.

Skye will be the new leader of the Inhumans
Raina predicted this and if you check backwards, all of her predictions came to pass.

Lash is sent by either the Elders or Maximus the Mad.

Lincoln Campbell will be incorporated into the comics as a NuHuman.

     Season 2- 3 Hiatus Theories 
The pills in the season 2 finale won't be enough
the Terrigen-infused vitamins won't be enough to turn a person totally Inhuman - in fact, they may not be specific to descendants any more. They've been processed and tossed around so much that they only contain a fraction of the original power and potential, and will only activate if the person is exposed to a second factor - say, an irradiated Spider-bite or some gamma radiation...

Coulson's injury will spark a Running Gag
That you have to lose a body part in the line of duty to be a proper Director. Fury lost an eye, and now Coulson has lost a hand. It's going to make all potential successors to Coulson worry.

Simmons is empowered and becomes the MCU Ms. Marvel
Kree Artifact + Average Human seems a pretty solid recipe for an origin.

At some point in a future episode, Mack and Coulson will have an exchange of dialogue somewhere along these lines.
Mack: (in a scuffle) Hey, could you give me a hand here?
Coulson: Wasn't one enough?!
Because really, the opportunity is too good to pass up.
  • Hilariously, Coulson said that instead in "Inside Man": Coulson asked Talbot to give him his then-detached prosthetic hand, much to the latter's disgust.

Simmons is in stasis.
She's one of the main characters; there's no way they would just drop a bridge on her like that.
  • She's On the run.

SHIELD will need an extra set of medical hands at some point, and so they'll call on Cal.
While his memories have been erased, he's still kept his medical skills, as he is now operating as a veterinarian. At some point SHIELD will need this unparalleled medical ability and will call on him, particularly now that Simmons is gone.

Coulson's arm will be restored by Dr. Cho's genetic technology.
If it was capable of repairing Hawkeye's serious wounds and constructing The Vision from scratch, there's nothing stopping it from building Coulson a new hand. Of course, he might once again have some issues with "muscle memory".
  • Currently, he's gone for the Luke Skywalker route, of cybernetics.

It will be revealed that A.I.M. works for HYDRA.
A major subplot will be that A.I.M. is getting fed up with HYDRA's failures and joins Ward/strikes out on their own leading to a four way battle between SHIELD, HYDRA, Ward's group, and AIM with the Ten Rings, Maggia, the Hand, and maybe the Kree thrown in for good measure.

If vampires are introduced, they will be a subspecies of Inhuman
Since science is magic and All Myths Are True. Plus, it would be a perfect springboard into a Blade movie/series. Also, the episode Blade is introduced could feature Koenig and Deadpool (if Marvel gets the rights.) It would be the Blade Trinity reunion no one wanted.

Joss Whedon will take a more hands-on approach than he has thus far.
While Joss is one of the show's creators and is still listed as an executive producer, he's had to take a very hands-off approach to the series since its inception due to being preoccupied with Avengers: Age of Ultron. With that out of the way, and with no other apparent projects for him on the horizon, he may return to the staff of the show (he has also in interviews stated his desire to return to television in general).

Joss Whedon will distance himself from the show

Ward will not be the Big Bad of Season 3.
Because Ward being the Big Bad is a ripe target of Jossing. Either Ward will merely use his new subordinates for a personal vendetta against Bobbi and dispose of them all once his task is finished only to be replaced by the real Big Bad, or he'll already be dead for some reason by the time Season 3 begins.
  • Season 3's Big Bad is Hive, an ancient Inhuman who possesses corpses. His current host is—you guessed it—Ward.

Right now, HYDRA's remnants are scattered and leaderless, all the harder to root out and finish off. If Ward reunifies HYDRA and then leads it to its true and final destruction (probably by S.H.I.E.L.D.), perhaps Ward thinks that this will finally earn him the redemption to which he clearly feels entitled.

Lockjaw will be introduced
However as just a dog, not whatever he is in the comics. Also he'll be played by a bully breed and have superpowers. Skye will adopt him from her father. After all he did say that something about a home needing a pet, and he has adoption days.

How Season 3 will open.
It will basically replay the entirety of the Season 2 Finale stinger with Simmons getting sucked up by the artifact. Then there's going to be an awkward pause that last a full five minutes, after which the thing liquifies again, spits out Simmons, and reforms, after which Simmons quickly shuts its containment unit and locks it down. The whole thing is basically a Funny Moment waiting to happen.

The term "Gifted" is related to the X-Men
The X-Men school is called "The Xavier Insitute for Gifted Youngsters". If Marvel ever works out a deal for the TV rights to X-Men like they did with Spiderman then this will be used as a lead in for it. S.H.E.I.L.D was inspired to use the term because Professor X used it first.

Ward wants to destroy both HYDRA and S.H.I.E.L.D.
Even when he was in HYDRA in the past, he was never truly loyal to them. And between what they've done to both him and Kara, he has little reason to love them now. But he can't fight S.H.I.E.L.D. all by himself, and HYDRA is in need of a new head. What better way to take out both factions than to pit them against each other?

Simmons will try to kill Ward again in Season 3.
When Simmons tells Fitz that she attempted her plan to kill Ward back in the Arctic, she says that she will blame herself for the next bad thing he will do. That "next thing" was shortly revealed to be kidnapping Bobbi to torture and attempt to murder her as a part of Kara's "closure". If Simmons comes out of the Kree stone with superpowers, there's probably a good chance she'll use them the moment SHIELD happens to have intelligence on Ward's last location, in order to get vengeance for Bobbi, Fitz, and herself.

Related to the above theory: Ward's new personality will be Taskmaster.
In the comics, Tony Masters was a SHIELD agent who gained his powers when taking an experimental memory-affecting serum. It's possible that an accident during the TAHITI process will give Ward new memories as well as Taskmaster's powers.

At the start of Season 3, Fitz and Simmons will be in a relationship.
And Fitz will start suspecting something because it goes too perfectly.

Season 3 will introduce magic into the MCU
With Phase 2 of the MCU winding down and Dr. Strange slated to be a part of Phase 3, Season 3 of Agents of SHIELD will begin introducing components of actual magic and all the things that accompany it into the universe.
  • Not Season 3, but Season 4 does.

Simmons is an Inhuman, but doesn't know it since she never got activated.
At the end of the Season 2 finale, Simmons was swallowed up by the Kree weapon, which was meant specifically to attack Inhumans. Why should it attack Simmons if she's just a normal human? Next Season, she'll take some fish oil supplements and things will get interesting.

Donnie Gill is still alive
As established earlier in the episode, Skye has never taken anyone out, so she was probably using ICERs, not real bullets. Even if she was using real bullets, she probably wouldn't go for a kill shot, and even if she did, he wouldn't die as fast as he started to freeze. The fall wasn't large enough to kill him, and hypothermia—if it affects him—wouldn't kick in that fast. Plus, Skye says that they Never Found the Body. He froze himself to survive and will return in season 3.

Matt Murdock will appear for an episode in Season 3.
While assisting the team with a mission, he'll casually mention his time at St. Agnes orphanage. Hearing this, Skye will remember him.
  • Hasn't appeared in Season 3, but there's room in Season 4 for a cameo.

Ward will try to form an alliance between HYDRA and The Hand
He hasn't got very many members with him right now, so he needs another organization to fill the ranks until HYDRA is back on its feet. He'll offer The Hand protection, resources, and whatever it takes to get them on board, and in return he'll ask them to help HYDRA - and resurrect Kara.

The Monolith is a Symbiote
While the solid form and Kree origin are new, the Monolith's liquid form looks a lot like a Klyntar symbiote, the same species as Venom and Carnage. In the season finale it bonded to Simmons, and while she won't become one of the aforementioned characters, she will be something similar, possibly Scream.

Hunter and Skye will become an Official Couple
As part of his Character Development, Hunter decided he was done with his mutually destructive relationship with Mockingbird and him and Skye had quite a bit of Ship Tease in early Season 2.
  • It's still Hunterbird.

Darren Cross' shrink-ray pistol from Ant-Man will appear.
The pistol kills a person and shrinks a body's mass so that it's easy to remove the evidence. Such a weapon would be useful to both SHIELD and HYDRA.

The Secret Warriors will be a Multinational Team
Mainly due to Civil War. The movie is expanding the Superhero Registration Act to a global level, but only seem to be representing that via Black Panther. But Skye's team could easily contain heroes from around the world including Faiza Hussain, Eden Fesi, Radiance, and members of Alpha Flight or Big Hero 6.

The Kree Stone and Simmons won't have an immediate payoff
The opening scene of season 3 will be Simmons being regurgitated, standing up, and resuming her duties as if nothing is wrong, and nobody will realize that the rock even took her. But over the course of the next few episodes she'll start behaving oddly, and somebody will see the footage of her capture and realize something is wrong with her.


The show will occasionally be used for Poorly Disguised Pilots of whatever obscure character Marvel wants to make a movie for next
Doc Strange, Heroes for Hire, Daredevil reboot, hell even a much-better-made Howard the Duck reboot. The potential is limitless.

The spinoff will be Avengers Academy
The Theta Protocol plot provides an easy way to build up to that, along with the set pictures from Age of Ultron revealing a pseudo-Avengers Academy already built. Plus ABC/Marvel probably won't be able to resist slapping on the Avengers name onto the spinoff for brand recognition and marketing.
  • Given the way Age of Ultron ends with the New Avengers Facility being established, this one is entirely plausible.

The proposed spinoff will be Thunderbolts.
A crew of former villains and supervillains who team up to seek redemption by means of Pay Evil unto Evil. Characters could include Grant Ward, Agent 33, a brainwashed Bakshi, Mike Peterson, and Skye's father. May involve heavy doses of Heroic Comedic Sociopathy.
  • Bakshi's death in "The Dirty Half Dozen" rules him out, but Wendell Levi, Karla Faye Gideon, Francis Noche, and Angar the Screamer would all be possibilities.

There will be a crossover and/or Poorly Disguised Pilot for the Netflix series.
It's been announced that Netflix will be airing a number of MCU-based shows, starring Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, Luke Cage and the Defenders. (The latter of which is a team-up miniseries of those characters). Agents of SHIELD could have a few episodes focusing on those characters.

The shelved spin-off with Bobbi and Lance was Marvel's backup plan.
Just in case the show didn't end up being renewed for a third season, the spin-off would have served as something of a retool so that a TV series based around SHIELD would continue to air.

A Ghost Rider spin-off is being considered.
Reception to the show's interpretation of Ghost Rider has already been enormously positive based just on the season premiere, and he is a character who could easily sustain a series on his own.


Melinda was pregnant during the events of Bahrain
She was unknowingly in the early stages of pregnancy during the mission and the ensuring stress and trauma it caused made her miscarry.

SHIELD is working with the NSA
They have extensive surveillance. Maybe the Patriot Act was really about finding super powered people and terrorism was just a cover.

The Rising Tide is the supernatural branch of Wiki Leaks
Both are trying to expose government secrets. Alternatively, The Rising Tide is a metaphor for Wiki Leaks.

Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns will guest star at some point.
Let this happen.

The other agents will eventually find out about Coulson's love of Captain America

Coulson and May were in a relationship while in the academy

The series will end with Coulson making a Heroic Sacrifice and being Killed Off For Reall

Either Fitz or Simmons will be killed off eventually.
Fitz and Simmons are the cutest two characters, and a pair of people so close that even in-show they are called by one name. Wise-cracking duos usually become popular in fandoms. This is a Joss Whedon show. One of them is almost certainly going to die. Joss is probably salivating at the potential fan tears already.
  • Simmons almost died in FZZT.
  • As of "Yes Men" and Simmons being blocked by Coulson on developing the GH serum, Fitz will probably die, and it will be in a way that could have been prevented had Simmons been allowed to work properly, driving a rift between her and Coulson who she'll blame for his death.
  • Fitz is in critical condition as of the Season 1 finale, and likely has brain damage.
  • Fitz's brain damage is confirmed and he's hallucinating Simmons, because she left. Watching him struggle with basic living is indeed worthy of fan tears.

Coulson got Audrey pregnant shortly before his "death"
Audrey didn't find out until after the events of "A Light in the Darkness" and keeps the child as Someone to Remember Him By. Coulson doesn't find out until much later, due to him trying to avoid finding out about her life or because S.H.I.E.L.D. deliberately hiding this knowledge from him.

Ron Glass's character will pull a Face–Heel Turn, if he isn't already The Mole.
Because every time Joss Whedon brings back a Firefly vet, they're a bad guy. Caleb. Jasmine. Alpha. Allison. Don John.

S.H.I.E.L.D. has access to Dollhouse tech.
While Coulson is still Coulson physically, he probably received Active architecture and got imprinted with his own personality, minus whatever mental modifications S.H.I.E.L.D. made to the imprint. "Tahiti" functions as code for his handler. (Probably Maria Hill.)
"Did I fall asleep?"
"Only for a little while."

The series will end with all of the members of the Bus needing to get their brains wiped to remove all memories of S.H.I.E.L.D.
The series will end with all of the members of the bus needing to get their brains wiped to remove all memories of SHIELD.

Grant Ward is the son of a Super Villain.
He's a badass agent with a Dark and Troubled Past whose antisocial tendencies are said to be "not surprising considering his family history."
  • Given how he responds to the mention of his Grandmother in the Pilot ("D: Gramsy?"), he could come from a legacy of Supervillains or Criminals.
  • As it turns out (per S1E8 "The Well"), Ward's dark and troubled past comes not from a lineage of supervillains, but rather ongoing trauma as a child, when his bullying older brother refused to let Grant save another kid drowning in a well.
  • "Turn, Turn, Turn". He's not the son of a super villain but the student of one.

The bored-looking blonde woman in the Paris safehouse is Yelena Belova
She'll come back as a major player.

If the series is a huge success it will end just prior to, or just after The Avengers 3
Since all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe seems centered around The Avengers (currently), as The Avengers 3 comes out, Agents of SHIELD will come to a close to "wrap up" the first successful cross media franchise. All stories in the final season will therefore be directly related to any and all events in The Avengers 3, and major guest appearances from some if not all of the major players in the third (and possibly last, as part of an epic "extended" trilogy) The Avengers film will be rampant.
  • The paycheck for the movie actors for the TV scenes would come from the movie budget.

Iron Man will appear...but not Tony Stark.
The mask will not go off. It's a way to use the character without having to pay a fortune to the actor for a mere TV episode.
  • Probably War Machine/Iron Patriot could also appear since he is military and probably more likely to work directly with SHIELD. If anyone is to appear to interact with Coulson from the Iron Man franchise directly, it could be Pepper (Gwyneth Paltrow - unlikely as she is big Hollywood A list and not a TV person) via a phone call or maybe even Happy (Jon Favreau - more likely as he has been on TV before and would probably not mind a little appearance in the show). If there is a main episode appearance and not just a cameo it would probably be either Clint or Natasha since they actually are part of SHIELD
    • Gwyneth Paltrow did two episodes of Glee. There are always shows that manage to get lots of A list cameos. (Batman!)
    • Pepper is spoken to via phone call, but her end of the conversation is never heard.

The show will have multiple episodes introducing other Marvel heroes, who may later appear in film
An episode with the team dealing with a vigilante in New York (Daredevil), a duo of heroes using their powers to earn money while helping the helpless (Luke Cage and Iron Fist/Heroes for Hire), a mysterious swamp monster with a connection to the super soldier formula (Man-Thing), a young teenaged gay couple using their powers for good (Hulkling and Wiccan, prior to forming Young Avengers), among others. They'll also see the team working alongside other SHIELD-connected heroes, including Widow and/or Hawkeye, and Mockingbird, Carol Danvers, etc.

Mandroid suits will appear
Probably reverse-engineered from some of the parts lying around after Stark pointlessly blew up all his suits.

Skye got S.H.I.E.L.D access codes from Ward when he was under the influence of the serum.
There's no way that one hacker in a van can crack a top-secret government agency in a few minutes when Tony Stark needed a custom-designed bug (and maybe an AI) to crack their files, and even then he was still detected and stopped.

At some point, Coulson will mention an old mission where he posed as a high school principal.
A Shout-Out to Ultimate Spider-Man. It will most likely include a lawyer-friendly nod to the Web-Head himself. Maybe it'll even be mentioned how he used to have a ponytail. As it turns out, an alternate version of Coulson is a high school teacher in the Framework, and as Spider-Man is part of the MCU now, any shout-outs don't even have to be lawyer friendly.

GDI and SHIELD are alternate-universe versions of each other
One is an international organization using a bird-of-prey as a symbol, with origins in black-ops and with a history involving fighting a terrorist organization with state-level resources. The other is an international organization using a bird-of-prey as a symbol, with origins in black-ops and with a history involving fighting a terrorist organization with state-level resources.

Lola is an AI
This explains Coulson's Insistent Terminology, constantly reminding people that his car has a name. Because she's sentient, and she gets offended when people treat her like an ordinary car.
  • If you buy the theory that Coulson is an LMD or android, that would explain why he and he alone has an affinity for her.

Simmons is an alcoholic
She has been shown drinking beer in both of the first two episodes, and in the second episode, when Skye asked her how many drinks she had so far, she deflected the question and told Skye to loosen up.
  • There's further support in Season 2: when Coulson inspects the contents of her fridge while she's living alone undercover, he comments that she has nothing but beer and hot sauce. She counters that there's also some tea in a cupboard. Coupled with the fact that she admits to being stressed and lonely since leaving the team, it's not too out-there to read this interpretation between the lines.

At least one of the earlier model Deathloks will appear eventually
Garrett is Deathlok Mk. 1. Peterson is Deathlok Mk. 5. No mention has been given as to the identities and whereabouts of Deathlok Mks. 2-4, so it's possible that at least one of them is still out there.

Ward always lies
Related to the above, but with broader strokes. Ward is "Level 6" at the start of the show, implying a high degree of training as well as obvious mastery of field ops. It is said he has "mad skillz yo", but other than a dossier that was made about his activities (probably only the things that are allowed to potentially be leaked around SHIELD or even to other organizations without compromising anything) we know almost nothing about his past. This is seemingly true from a fiction standpoint of all the characters, but specifically, no one in universe seems to know anything about him.

Being a trained operative at such a high level, he has also been trained in methods of suppressing the truth, lying convincingly, bending truth into falsehood, and other forms of mental tactics including biological fortitude. That is to say, he has been dosed by truth serums of varying potency multiple times and even if Coulson injected him with a real serum in the pilot, he could resist it or at the work "around it".

In essence, you can't trust anything he says because he is so good at lying, it can all sound convincing and even be worked in so close to the truth that it blends in. He lies for a living.

  • Confirmed in "Turn, Turn, Turn", seeing as Ward is a HYDRA agent.

Everyone is a robot.
The entire team is an experiment, with each agent being a prototype LMD based on a deceased SHIELD agent. The perfect spy agent, the hivemind scientists...and Coulson himself, who died and was "revived" in the form of an LMD. It's a big test run to see how AI agents can function in the field.

Apollo candy bars will make an appearance.
Because they're a handy Bland-Name Product owned by the ABC Network.

Graviton will return as a dangerous vigilante looking to eliminate anything he thinks is "bad tech" at any cost necessary
Seems like a good way to reconcile Hall's obvious good guy personality with him still being an antagonist.
  • He'll go after Team Coulson for trying to stop him from destroying the gravitonium.

Skye has a killswitch, like Akela and the MI6 agent
Maybe a more basic version that means she has to take orders through a phone and hasn't got "backskatter" - it could even just be a killswitch of some sort built into her. This would explain her hacking skills (although they could still be her own, but her having a team of other hackers backing her up could explain a lot), why she's still spying (or whatever it is they want her to do) for the Rising Tide when she seems reluctant to betray The Team (and why she considers them family, but didn't feel that way about TRT) and why she empathised with Akela so quickly. It would also explain why she hesitated when Quinn was trying to talk her over to his side; she was waiting for orders on who to roll with.

Mack, the truck driver from episode 3, is the MCU counterpart of US1, or a relative/supporting character thereof
"Mach" is just his code name (if he's actually a trucker he wouldn't use his usual handle) and he suffered a head injury in his appearance. Even if he isn't Archer himself, he could easily be Papa Wheelie (explaining where he got the technology to build US1 from - it's S.H.I.E.L.D tech he was given as part of a settlement of sorts for being injured on the job).

The Heroes for Hire will appear
When the fact they were making a TV show leaked, the Heroes for Hire were one of the first things fans thought of. The format would work for TV, it would introduce some more female and PoC characters (a major complaint of the MCU) and with Ultimate Spider-Man using two of the main three as main characters they have a modern base.
  • As the end of Season 1, this is looking more likely. Mike Peterson refuses to rejoin Team Coulson but still wants to make up for his evil deeds as Deathlok. He could do that and pay the bills at the same time.
    • The Heroes for Hire are getting their own show, in the form of 2017's The Defenders.

Carol Danvers will appear
She's the lead in a new comic, female, has a military background... she won't appear all the time but she would fit the general idea. Of course, if she does it will only be as a military woman, not as Ms. Marvel.
  • She gets her own movie instead.

Hawkeye and Black Widow will appear.
Perhaps only in one or two episodes, but they are technically agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. so this would make sense.
  • As an addendum, Nick Fury will show up in the pilot. Samuel L. Muthafuckin' Jackson shows up in "0-8-4". Whoever called that now has permission to gloat. He has also announced that he will appear in the season finale.
    • A recurring appearance by Maria Hill. In the full-length trailer, we hear a woman who sounds very much like Cobie Smulders interviewing Agent Ward about what S.H.I.E.L.D. means to him. Not sure if it's actually her, but, an interesting thought nonetheless. Hill was in the pilot.
    • Not an appearance, but they were explicitly referenced in "The Hub" as agents so good they didn't need extraction plans.

The Fantastic Four and the X-Men can't appear in the series
So they'll just get referenced instead. There will be loads of banter about how those five teenagers keep disappearing on them or something.
  • Possibly some specific-ish references to them in order to keep the potential alive once license deals run out and Disney/Marvel get their property back for films. Also Spider-Man will be referenced somehow. If they do, it'll be roundabout references. They couldn't even get Sony to let them use Empire State University, Spider-Man swinging by in the far background, or even Tobey Maguire standing in a crowd shot for The Incredible Hulk (2008).
  • The Baxter Building was shown as a Freeze-Frame Bonus in Captain America 2, so it's not entirely impossible for them to get referenced.

Any Marvel characters who cannot get a legal mention will have a lawyer-friendly Shout-Out
Such as "the kid from Queens" or "that weird boarding school up in Westchester" or "those four astronauts that came back with super powers". Maybe, through this, when Disney gets the movie rights, they can toss them in there because of the aforementioned shout-outs...

The team will go up against a runaway experiment from the Weapon X program
They won't be mentioned by name, of course, but Coulson will brief the others on a top-secret program run by the Canadian government that experiments on meta-humans to create their own Super-Soldiers. He'll also mention that the closest thing they got to a success was a mercenary who went completely insane and now thinks he's a comic book character. (The files have pictures of Ryan Reynolds)
  • This is mentioned in episode 16, End of the Beginning. The man suspected of being "The Clairvoyant", Thomas Nash was part of a Canadian weapons program dealing with gifted individuals.

MI13, Pete Wisdom, and/or Union Jack will make an appearance at some point.
Clark Gregg hinted on his Twitter that we'd see British superheroes at some point. MI13 almost seems like a gimme, since it's basically the British version of SHIELD. Meanwhile, Pete and Jack are the two main British heroes who either have no powers or have powers that can be easily ignored or explained by current MCU sources.
  • Captain Britain might be hard to justify, considering his origins are pretty firmly magical and so far the only magic we've seen is Asgardian. Same goes for a number of other British heroes, sadly. And, MI13 seems to what STRIKE evolved into, being that they seem to be the current organization dealing with weird superpowered y still age to adulthood at the same rate as humans (i.e. roughly 20 years), but then remain at that state for thousands more years—in other words, Skye IS only 24, but she will still look that way thousands of years from now. This also would bring up an extra layer of drama, as Skye will have to grasp the notion that she will end up outliving her friends and adoptive family by millennia.
Sif's upcoming appearance on the show may be related to Skye's origins. Perhaps she is the offspring of Thor and Sif? This would also technically mean that it was her uncle who killed Coulson, which the show will of course poke fun at.
  • Alternatively; maybe she's half-Asgardian, which would explain the ageing. There's a possible culprit in Professor Randolph. He's been "spreading his genes" for as much as a thousand years so it's not out of the question that a chunk of Earth's population are his descendents. Skye could be 1/100 Asgardian or something like that.
  • Skye being Asgardian is possibly Jossed as of T.R.A.C.K.S., since she is shot twice, and is mortally wounded, like any normal human would be. An Asgardian would easily shrug off something like that. However, Tess Black is a demigoddess, but doesn't have any powers.
  • At a panel at the Paley Festival, Ming-na Wen (May's actress) proposed her own theory that Skye is the child of May and Thor. After all, "he's dreamy". It should be noted that this is her own WMG, with no confirmation from the studio as a whole (Which may at least partially be inspired by fantasies over her character's love life). So one member of the cast is on record as favoring this theory, but it's not confirmed at the moment.

The series is meant to have a "false freedom"/"manipulation" theme.
So far we've had Project Centipede (both of the subjects we've seen so far were lured in with a "we'll make you powerful so you can be free to take what you deserve" offer and ended up being used), Reyes betraying Coulson by using their previous relationship in 0-8-4 and the villain of the third episode (who ranted on about freedom while being perfectly happy to keep people prisoner for his own benefitnote  and avoid any accountability himself). Akela was even more explicit (given she outright said she felt more free locked in a cage than she did with the Explosive Leash).

Sooner or later May is going to be incapacitated while the bus is airborne.
She's the best person on the team who knows how to fly (And more importantly land) an airplane. That kind of problem is just begging to happen.
  • It is shown in both "The Only Light In The Darkness" and "Nothing Personal" that Ward can fly the Bus.

At some point, Lola will be destroyed
Most likely while someone other than Coulson (probably Skye) is driving her without permission. She will likely do this out of necessity. Some agents take the black SUV out on a mission, an enemy attacks the Bus, and Skye pursues in Lola.
  • Alternatively, it will be blown up by a super villain. This almost happens in "Nothing Personal" while Coulson and Skye are escaping the hijacked Bus in midair. Ward shoots it several times, and it has a rather rocky trip to the ground, but it ultimately survives the ordeal.

There is more than there seems to the plan during The Hub
It is either Secret Test of Character or part of some deeper plot. Possibly tying into the whole SHIELD going bad in the new Captain America movie,if that is what happens. It would explain why Victoria Hand was used in the episode, considering her ties with HAMMER.
  • The Plan may have been a Secret Test of Character for Skye in particular, especially if the promos for episode 11 are any indication; that is, Victoria Hand once again becomes involved, Skye is seen wearing field agent gear and even borrows Coulson's Catchphrase at one point!

Ward's flashback
Was Ward really the brother who was threatened to not help the brother struggling to stay above water in the well, or was he the one doing the threatening? The oldest brother looked a lot more like Brett Dalton than the brother who was threatened did, which seems like something the producers would catch, unless it was intentional. Does adult Grant subconsciously style himself after his older brother? Was there some kind of body-switching or identity theft shenanigans? Did something happen to Grant, after which the older brother took his identity and devoted himself to helping others as penance? This is the MCU, after all. Stranger things have happened.
  • Ward implied he's Unpersoned himself before.
  • In "Nothing Personal", Ward tells Skye that no, his older brother didn't beat up the younger brother himself; he made Ward do it for him.

The dimension Tobias Ford have been to really was Hel.
Not the Christian Hell, but the Hel of Norse myth.

Coulson's going to end up losing the rest of his antique collection in the line of duty.
He's already sacrificed his trading cards and his radio watch, the rest is sure to follow.

Tobias Ford was trapped in Mephisto's realm
With all the religious parallels in that episode, it's likely. He did say it looked like hell, after all.

Tobias Ford was trapped on the same planet that Simmons ends up on in season 3
Possibly the most likely option now; the brief picture we see in Simmons' 3D model in episode 9 has a passing resemblance to the planet from season 3, and Tobias' violent and erratic behavior could be attributed to the pyschic influence of the inhuman who resides on that planet.

Skye will eventually be issued a revolver.
Since she has trouble remembering the difference between the magazine release and the safety catch, the best choice is to give her a gun that takes out all the guesswork. And since she's a hacker rather than a field agent, she doesn't need the most advanced firearms available.

Coulson's cellist girlfriend was a spy getting close to him for information.
He's high level and on friendly terms with Director Fury, so he makes a tempting target.

Coulson's first assignment as a SHIELD agent was at a rodeo.
Making his "This isn't my first rodeo, Mr. Stark" line in Iron Man more literal.

Fury knows something about Skye's powers
In his brief cameo in episode two, he warns Coulson that Skye is "a risk". If he's been the Director of SHIELD long enough to have been involved in making her an Unperson, then he might know something about her powers. He could be talking about a lot more than her simply breaking into the SHIELD system.

Quinn's role in Centipede is to create new superpowered individuals
Every time he's shown up, he's been backing someone trying to make some kind of superweapon, and each time, as a result of SHIELD's trying to stop said superweapon, the creator has ended up with powers derived from his creation. That's what he's really after. Now he just needs to fund a raid on a SHIELD holding facility to break his new supersoldiers out.

We will see the formation of something like the Masters of Evil
Centipede, HYDRA, AIM, ZODIAC, or just Mike Peterson will bust open the Sandbox. In the ensuing confusion, Franklin Hall, Donnie Gill, maybe Lorelei and a few others will break out and form a supervillain team. This will be the focus of an episode, as Team Coulson interacts with some vigilantes while having a manhunt. The twist, we discover at the end of the episode, is that the Hall and Gill were incidental. The breakout was cover for thieves boosting the Chitauri virus helmet. Dun dun dun.

Why May let her anger get to her during beating Quinn
Normally she's quite calm and composed, but the beating she was giving Quinn brought out some of the repressed fury she had from taking the Berserker Staff.

The Guest House facility was an outpost of SWORD.
Makes perfect sense, given the confirmed status of it belonging not to SHIELD, rather an as-of-yet-unnamed associate organization and the housing of an apparent (albeit very dead) alien lifeform. note 

Simmons and Morse become an item
There might have been chemistry between them in 2.5 "A Wolf in the Henhouse." ("Call me Bobbi." "If it hadn’t had been for Bobbi, I would never have made it out... she's amazing!") Proposed 'ship name: MockingJem?

General Talbot has been replaced by an imposter
Since the start of the season he's been determined to end SHIELD once and for all. Then comes the attack on the UN and he suddenly goes to bat for SHIELD with the senator who's out to bury SHIELD? Suspicious.
  • He actually was replaced during "Face My Enemy".

Talbot isn't working for the Air Force right now
He's been seconded to NATO to be a part of their anti-HYDRA unit, not the US government's. By acting on behalf of a multi-national group (Even if most of his people are American), he can operate freely in other countries without triggering an international incident over US troops operating in other countries without seeking the host nation's permission, especially since every country he's been seen operating in so far is a NATO member. This way, America is not launching raids on the soil of allied countries; NATO is just performing an internal security op.

Christian Ward and Grant Ward are both secretly conspiring together.
Christian knew that Grant would be able to break free if transferred to him, and it was in fact Just as Planned. As for who really tortured their younger's still unknown. Maybe Thomas Ward never even existed? This may end up being confirmed when S.H.I.E.L.D. looks into the records of someone named Thomas Ward, but cannot find anything.

Coulson's cellist girlfriend will be killed (or at least threatened) by HYDRA
They need to get Coulson out in the open, what better way than to endanger his loved one.

Skye isn't the person Ward is really interested in.
Lorelei only said there was another; she didn't say who. It might not be a woman at all, but Fitz, and that Ward is in an armoured closet.) It could also be Coulson. Someone has to acknowledge Clark Gregg is only plain by Hollywood standards in universe.

The correct response to the Spy Speak at the Guest House.
Guard: "How was the drive from Istanbul?"
Visitor: "Don't you mean Constantinople?"

Ward is brainwashed (ala the Manchurian Candidate and/or the Winter Soldier).
Lots of people have noted that everything about his actions and facial expressions throughout the episode were not only out-of-character, but just Granted, part of every good sleeper agent's job is to blend in well in enemy territory, but the twist was so out of nowhere, there might be something else to it.
  • Given every HYDRA member's proclivity to smugly shout HAIL HYDRA at the slightest victory, Ward was oddly silent and blank-eyed whenever the opportunity arose.
  • Additionally, his "family history" alluded to by Coulson might go beyond Ward's older brother being a psychopath; it could be generational involvement in HYDRA. He could have been programmed from a young age (or by Garrett during his training) to ally with them, and is either resisting it or feeling extreme regret and internal conflict now that he's been on the good guys' side.
  • One thing from The Winter Soldier that might be relevant to this avenue of speculation is that HYDRA has Loki's staff.
  • He claims he wasn't brainwashed, but he also the Lying Liar who Lies a Lot.
  • Unlikely, because if he had been Malik wouldn't have had to convince Ward to join him only "tell" him too.

Ward was telling the truth about the 'truth serum'
If SHIELD really did have a fast acting and highly reliable truth serum available to it, why hasn't the team used it more often? There are three times using it would have made perfect sense: On Vanchat during "The Magical Place", on Quinn during "TAHITI" and on May during "Turn, Turn, Turn". In none of those cases is using the serum even suggested, and all three take place long enough after the pilot that they could restock. Why would the team not use their best interrogation tool on an important prisoner during a crisis? Because it doesn't actually exist.

Blake was specifically targeted by Deathlok
In Turn, Turn, Turn, Hand mentions that Blake had come to her with suspicions that high level SHIELD agents were in fact double agents involved in some sort of conspiracy. Deathlok was sent to take him out because he was getting too close to the truth.

Skye will kill Ward
If it turns out that he really is Evil All Along, then it will be poetic given who trained her. The trailers REALLY seem to be building to an epic confrontation when the "truth" is finally revealed.
  • "The Only Light..." really seems to be building up to this given Skye's discovery of his true loyalty.
  • Coulson is the one who kills him in season 3.

After Skye learns of Ward's involvement with HYDRA, she'll be held at gunpoint only for her to use that disarming technique.
Someone (either former S.O. Ward or his own former S.O., Garrett) will lampshade it.

Victoria Hand is still alive.
Let's consider how Hand died. She gave a loaded gun to Ward and invited him to use it on Garrett, only for Ward to turn it on her and her guards instead. This seems not only Too Dumb to Live, but Out of Character for someone as Properly Paranoid as Hand. So what really happened? Hand (and presumably the guards) was a Life Model Decoy or something similar. The whole thing was a Secret Test of Character for Ward—and since he failed, Hand knows he's a traitor and he's in even more danger than he thinks.

The idea that Ward is Hydra has occurred to Coulson.
Someone on the team tries to shut down Tripplet's addition to the team because he was Garret's student and worked with him for years. Why couldn't the same apply to Ward, after all?

Ward tried to kill May in "Yes Men".
Watch the timing there. If we count the amount of time Lady Sif puts on the collar, even under the most liberal interpretation of assuming the collar only disables her power when it's finished extending, there are another five and a half seconds of that scene where they stare at each other and Sif makes a joke. Then, offscreen, Sif has to pull Lorelei to her feet, put on handcuffs, and march her down a hall. (The hall is the length of the interrogation room.) Then we count the seconds between Ward pulling the trigger on the gun, and Lady Sif walking into sight. It's...six and a half seconds. Unless Lady Sif can wrangle Lorelei upright and down a hall, plus put on cuffs, in one second, (She didn't seem to be moving particularly fast when she strolled in.) Ward had stopped being under Lorelei's control several seconds before he pulled that trigger. Granted, it's possible this is just an editing screwup, but it seems equally possible that this was actually Ward trying to eliminate May when he was handed a completely valid excuse.
  • Considering that offscreen stuff should have taken five or ten seconds anyway, it seems possible that the editing was designed to trick us by making us think it was the standard 'just slightly back in time to show two simultaneous events'. But in reality, we didn't back up at all, and the collar was on Lorelei before we jumped back to watch Ward and May.
  • As Ward is a HYDRA agent, this is actually probably confirmed.
Pissing off Coulson
So far, there has only ever been one way to make Coulson truly angry; betraying his trust. Even getting stabbed through the heart by Loki or trying to survive getting killed by Scorch did little more than make him very snarky. Skye selling out the team? First time he's ever raised his voice. So far, Coulson has been betrayed 3 times. Once by Skye, which at this point he's forgiven. Once by May, which hit even harder than Skye's betrayal since he's known her longer than anyone on the team. Once by Garrett, a trusted friend. How will he take Ward's betrayal when that comes out? Prediction: They'll be scraping what's left of Ward off the wall.
  • Confirmed as the show progresses.

Arcade is part of the Rising Tide
Some versions of him have been a hacker, or even a technopath.

If/when they get rights to talk about X-Men and related franchises, they will hand wave their lack of appearances before then with "it was level (_) information"
So far its been established that level 7 is stuff that the public in-universe has vague knowledge of, but no solid info, and seems to pertain to everything we've seen in the cinematic releases thus far. Level 8 is even more secret than that, but what about levels even more secret then level 8? Maybe the Marvel Cinematic Universe takes place just before mutants are publically ousted, just before the 4 go up in space, and just before OzTech begins its research on spiders. These could be monitored by the highest clearance level in S.H.I.E.L.D (mutants, OzTech), or so low risk at this point that it's minimum concern (Reed Richards, OzTech), until such time as the behind the scenes stuff is haggled out and they can be introduced.

A Mythology Gag for when the team is trying to identify a mystery assassin (who turns out to be Taskmaster) who infiltrated a S.H.I.E.L.D. security team and snapped the neck of some random important guy, they go over names on a list of known mercenaries, including...
  • Abner Jenkins, a hired gun from central Europe with tech that could give Tony Stark a run for his money and a personal grudge against Coulson. (rejected because the assassin went in incognito, while Jenkins takes more of a Why Don't You Just Shoot Him? approach)
  • A hitman known only as "Lester" who has worked for some of the world's greatest crime lords (rejected because the assassin killed the target barehanded, and Lester only kills with projectiles)
  • A Canadian mercenary named Wade Wilson who underwent genetic experiments and is dangerously unstable (rejected because the assassin never spoke, and the file makes it very clear that Wilson doesn't shut up)
  • A mercenary from Symkaria named Silver Sablinova who leads her own pack of assassins (rejected because it was clearly a one-man job; and, well, it was clearly a man)
  • Sergei Kravinoff, a Russian big game hunter who decided Hunting the Most Dangerous Game was more of a challenge (rejected because he specializes in hunting his prey down, while the assassin was told where his target would be by the Clairvoyant)
  • Ex-S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Anthony Masters, one of the deadliest hand-to-hand fighters on Earth (deduced to be him, because the assassin clearly knew S.H.I.E.L.D. protocols like only an ex-agent would)

Fitz is the MCU's version of Red Ghost.
Explains his fascination with monkeys.

Agent Ward is the MCU version of Deadpool.
Based on nothing but him turning to the viewer at the end of "Turn turn turn". He will be critically injured and experimented on by HYDRA, making him insane while giving him advanced regeneration. He will befriend an agent named Bob before escaping HYDRA.

Agent Kaminsky, the overeager HYDRA agent, is Bob: Agent of HYDRA
His first name was never revealed in the show, and Bob's last name was never revealed in the comics. Coulson's team will need to take him lout very quickly to get to the rest of the event in the finale, so he could easily get reduced to Butt-Monkey status in the first few minutes of the episode. We need Bob.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D is not an adaptation of S.H.I.E.L.D.
It's an adaptation of Nextwave Agents Of H.A.T.E., where the Beyond Corporation (a shell corporation fronting their arch nemesis S.I.L.E.N.T.) has taken over H.A.T.E. and the 'wavers are on the run.

Roxxon Energy Corporation is everywhere
Random bits:
  • The Leader, under SHIELD custody, is said to have the "ability to predict probable outcomes of tactical and strategic scenarios is so advanced that it borders on clairvoyance" from the Other Wiki.
  • Deathlok Program is produced by Cybertek, a division of Roxxon Energy Corporation, which has a Brain Trust including the Leader in Ultimate Universe.
  • The head of Roxxon Energy Corporation is Aleksander Lukin, who is speculated to be merged with the character Alexander Pierce in Captain American: Winter Soldier.
  • Finally, Brand Coorporation is another subsidiary of Roxxon, which is said to have connection(?) to Abigail Brand, an orphan who becomes an agent of SHIELD and director of SWORD. Skye is an orphan and she wants to fly a spaceship.

Grant Ward only ever had one brother.
The other one is an Invented Individual Ward made up to help him manipulate others. The only person who says that Ward has (or had) two brothers is Ward himself. Ward, as described above, is a lying liar who lies. When other characters access Ward's records, they refer to Ward's brother in the singular and never specify which one they're talking about. Both times Ward mentions having two brothers, he's explicitly trying to get Skye to trust him. Since Ward's claims about the nature of his older brother's actions vary between the two discussions, it would make more sense for the older brother to be the fictional one, but the other way would work, too.
  • There are two brothers in the flashback scenes in "The Well" but Ward is a lying liar who lies. It would be easy for Unreliable Narrator to account for this.
  • When the eldest Ward brother appears, the truth becomes more complicated. Senator Christian Ward confirms that he and Grant have a younger brother named Thomas, though his version of what happened between the three of them differs wildly from Grant's. He says that Grant is always lying: "Beneath every lie is another lie." On the other hand, Grant insists that Christian is worse then he himself, and also a better liar. "Thomas" could still be invention for the two brothers to make each other look like a monster.
  • Grant did indeed have two brothers. Thomas considers Grant to be the worst of his two siblings, because Christian at least was willing to accept responsibility for his actions, while Grant never did.

Thomas Ward was a powered individual.
He took pleasure in turning his brothers against each by using his powers to make them think the other one was torturing him (or in Grant's case convincing him that Christian was forcing him to). This would also be a shout out to Billy Blim on Angel, who also a) came from a family compared to the Kennedys and b) like to watch as other people affected by his powers hurt people (in his case only women) rather than doing it himself.

Lynda Carter will appear as Contessa Valentina de Fontaine
With Maria Hill and Bobbi Morse being played by two former Wonder Women, the pattern is there.

One of the test subjects for Project: T.A.H.I.T.I. was a cancer patient named Wade Wilson
Because if Quicksilver can exist in two unintersectible Marvel film continuities, why can't the Merc with a mouth? Considering the mind-expanding form of insanity that Garret got when being injected with that drug, it totally makes sense that with the wrong set of variables it could imbue someone with Medium Awareness.

Creel turning into wood was a test by the SFX team
To see if they could animate wood well enough to have Groot show up in a future episode.

Lance Hunter will become Deadpool
He's a mercenary who, at one point, was married to a "demonic hellbeast". He loves talking and snarking. Eventually he will reveal that "Lancer Hunter" is a name he choose for himself (like how Mary Sue Poots became Skye) and that his real name is "Wade Wilson". After that he'll get injected with GH-235, go nuts, and develop Medium Awareness.

HYDRA will try to brainwash Talbot
However, the brainwashing will not hold because the one thing they wish for him to do, take down SHIELD, would constantly erase it. This is because Talbot hates Coulson THAT FREAKIN' MUCH due to SHIELD now being a vigilante group and he's stooped to accepting what are essentially bribes from them to keep his position. It's also because he wishes to finally arrest Coulson through legitimate means to prove to Coulson that all these secret agent shenanigans do not work in protecting the world, rather than having just some stereotypical evil organization mind controlling him into doing so.

Skye's nickname for Coulson will not get updated because of his promotion
Because Coulson, as a Marvel character, would not appreciate being called "DC".
  • Confirmed.

Lance and Morse were freelance mercs for hire working together
Lance said that "I met a girl" in response to Talbot's question about why he chose the merc work. He could be referring to Bobbi. Then Bobbi opted to join S.H.I.E.L.D., a decision that clearly didn't sit too well with Lance. This would explain part of why Hunter's a bit miffed about his "she-devil ex" joining the team.

Coulson purposely gave Grant away as a diversionary tactic.
Think about it: By handing Grant to Christian, Coulson appeases him on the public end and subsequently gets Talbot off S.H.I.E.L.D.'s back. Coulson would also know that Grant would attempt escape, and by doing so, Christian will have his hands full trying to contain Grant. They cannot blame Coulson or S.H.I.E.L.D. for Grant's escape, after all Grant was in their hands when he escaped (and he did warn them). All in all, less headaches for Coulson and for S.H.I.E.L.D.

Skye will join HYDRA
The Doctor her father and Whitehall are now allied together. Whitehall is shown to be very efficient at brainwashing even the most loyal SHIELD agents. As a reward for his allegiance and to keep him on HYDRA's side, Whitehall will brainwash a captured Skye into joining HYDRA and being loyal to The Doctor.

If the show makes it to Season 3, the characters from Big Hero 6 will make appearances to draw in more viewers
Just like the characters from Frozen (2013) are in a season of Once Upon a Time.

Bobbi was part of some special devision of SHIELD, alongside Hawkeye and Black Widow
She's specifically called 'one of their best', appears to be a One-Man Army, has a unique looking tactical outfit that resembles what Hawkeye and Widow (and Cap) wore, has mentioned Clint in a way to suggest she knows him personally (and as she knows May, and May knows Widow, means she probably knew Widow as well), worked with Coulson in the past (and had high enough security clearance to know Coulson was alive), and generally seems to be treated like she's on their level. Likely, she was from the same branch of SHIELD that those two were in (along with Captain America during his time with SHIELD), possibly as part of some highly-decorated unit that Coulson oversaw. Alternatively, all three could have been SHIELD's own candidates for the Avengers Initiative (hey, she's an Avenger in the comics), which was why they worked with Coulson and had their own uniforms; as for why she wasn't present at the battle for New York, she was probably busy with something else that kept her away.

The second time around, Christian allowed Grant to do him in.
Overcome with guilt over what he had done to Thomas, and hating his parents for abusing him, Christian goes inside the cabin and stays inside as Grant burns it down and even prevents his parents from escaping the inferno. So in a way, yes, it was a murder-suicide.

One of the main cast members will die in the season finale, occurring in the fallout of Age of Ultron.
AoU premieres May 1, and the fall TV season ends in mid-May.
  • Something bad happens to Simmons at the very end.

Trip will be brought back as an LMD
The "Project Theta" that Coulson mentioned to the Koenigs was a contingency plan that activated LM Ds of whatever members they lost during the mission. They could have gotten brainwaves or whatever they needed when each agent went through the lie-detector. They'll activate Trip's unit and he'll be a part of the team again. Furthermore it could explain his appearance in Age of Ultron, since a robot would fit right in with everything else that's going on in there.
  • This would fit well with the theory that the Koenigs are LM Ds, especially when they teased such to Trip. The first thing he says when Tripp 2.0 is activated will be "I Knew It!."

The Koenigs are aliens
They're able to tell each other apart, can spot seemingly unnoticeably differences between each other, and don't recognize that they look identical. It's because they're aliens that are willingly aiding SHIELD, and have simply taken A Form You Are Comfortable With.
  • Although Radcliffe speculates they might be LM Ds of each other, they claim that they are just normal human quadruplets.

There will be a story arc where SWORD is formed as a replacement for SHIELD
Coulson is going to reiterate his offer to Talbot and this time he will point out that despite a relative lack of resources they took out one of the highest ranking HYDRA officers. He will also convince Talbot that there needs to be an organization like SHIELD because the ordinary governments of the world are grossly unprepared to deal with emerging resources that HYDRA is looking to take advantage of. He will do this by either showing Talbot footage of what the Diviner does or more likely have Skye demonstrate her powers to him first hand. Talbot will be convinced and plead to the United Nations the necessity of an organization like SHIELD and will eventually convince them to create such an organization from the current SHIELD agents. Only this time it won't be a peace keeping agency but a response unit to what would be game changers such as Stark level technology, extraterrestrial species, and super human abilities. Humorously Coulson will hate the name SWORD.

Ward will Take a Third Option and form his own faction
That will do the dark things that SHIELD can't or won't be seen doing. This group will consist of Ward, Agent 33 and Cal, who will help them recruit other Inhumans to their cause. When the two groups meet face to face both Ward and Cal will appeal to Skye who will not be impressed. During a discussion with Coulson Ward will say something like "You are a shield. You defend when others attack. You are a reaction. We're a little more ambitious than that. We're like a hammer that breaks those threats before they can hurt others."
  • Confirmed, sort of. Season 2 ends with him declaring that he resemble HYDRA around himself.

Mike Peterson will team up with Luke Cage
Mike will notice some evil deeds going on and step in to stop it like The Atoner. Luke will do likewise and there will be a brief Let's You and Him Fight before they turn against the thugs and kick their asses. Afterward, Luke will explain his Hero For Hire business angle and Mike will want in on it. Their first mission will highlight the Red Oni, Blue Oni nature of this team up in a Good Cop/Bad Cop fashion.
Luke Cage: Where's my money, honey?!
Mike Peterson: I'd pay the man his money. I can't hold him back forever.

Ward will go after Quinn
Given his feelings for Sky it isn't too much of a stretch to think he would go after someone who fatally injured her. The Broken Pedestal feelings he has regarding Garrett, who ordered the action, will be another factor. He will offer Quinn a choice: either turn himself and his Gravitonium into custody or Ward will send Cal after him. Quinn will try to Take a Third Option and fortify wherever he's keeping the Gravitonium, only for Ward to lead a group of Inhumans on a siege, with their powers making it a Curb-Stomp Battle. SHIELD will launch their own attack only to find Quinn gift wrapped like Bakshi was and a rose for Skye from Ward as well as the Gravitonium.

Talbot will have a meeting with Quinn
Where he will request, or more likely, demand that he hands over the Gravitonium. There will be an Actor Allusion where Talbot will tell Quinn that he likes Stark more.

Everyone thinks psychic powers don't exist because someone has a vested interest in everyone thinking that
Is it just a coincidence that a show where psychic powers not existing despite every other power under the sun being accepted is a Running Gag, is now incorporating the Inhumans where the main antagonist is a frequently secretive, Manipulative Bastard with psychic mind control powers?

Bobbi was unknowingly brainwashed as part of the compliance programme.
She's a sleeper agent within S.H.I.E.L.D., with Simmons as her handler. It would explain why Simmons rejoined S.H.I.E.L.D. after her HYDRA cover was blown, even though she repeatedly declared in Season 1 she had no purpose within the organisation any more after the uprising (though it's initially implied she came back for Fitz, that's belied by her actions towards him almost immediately).

Fitz doesn't actually have brain damage
He's been treated with GH325 or Extremis as part of the deal Simmons made with HYDRA and has actually made a full physical recovery. It would explain why he's able to make a miraculous recovery from being catatonic and nearly brain-dead when he first wakes up from his coma to nearly functioning normally again: he's actually got severe PTSD, which would explain psychosomatic symptoms like his hand losing some motor functions (note that, as an engineer, losing the use of his hands was the worst physical injury possible in the long-term, and it makes sense for him to fixate on that possibility above others), in addition to things like his aphasia, paranoia and hallucinations, and why all of them get worse again only when he's stressed or upset. Plus, everything Fitz is afraid of eventually happens because he's The Chew Toy, and one of his biggest fears in Season 1 was Simmons turning out to be HYDRA.

Why is Skye there?
This one is almost mentioned in-universe by May at the end of "Who You Really Are": It sure is odd that, after Coulson got brought back from the dead by GH-325, which put in some sort of compulsion to find the hidden city, he immediately locates Skye (someone who 'belongs' at the city) and she joins the team. May seemed to think this was all fate or something, but it actually makes a lot of sense if we assume that Coulson running across Skye was just random chance, but then he experienced some sort of compulsion to bring her along on his subconscious mission to find the city, because something in him recognized her as being 'worthy' of the city. This explains why Coulson would bring along someone who literally stated she was working to bring down SHIELD, and then keep her around after that was confirmed, which otherwise seems the rather strange security risk of deliberately hiring a Token Chaotic Teammate.

Cal's team of supervillains were set up to be hostile to S.H.I.E.L.D.
Since they were all persecuted and incarcerated while HYDRA agents were active within S.H.I.E.L.D., it's possible that one or more HYDRA agents had them deliberately mistreated so that, if the opportunity arose, they would aim their revenge back at S.H.I.E.L.D.

Daniel Whitehall isn't dead.
His youthfulness was obtained by vivisecting the seemingly ageless Jiyaing and giving himself her organs and tissue. In "Afterlife" Jiyaing is revealed to be "alive" due to her powers. If she survived, then presumably so did Whitehall, who absorbed them. This means Cal might get the bloody vengeance he was dreaming of after all.

Cal was taken to Afterlife to detox
Gordon dropped Cal into a room that has no doors and no windows and then left him there except for meals and brief conversations. What purpose could this serve? Cal mentioned earlier that he created a serum that gives him a boost to his physical abilities but also makes him unhinged. Gordon, with his "you're a science experiment" line, shows that he is aware of this. After a while it will wear off and he will calm down. In the meantime, he can't hurt anyone.

Coulson is building Avengers Academy
Why else would Coulson need 100 bunk beds and a very good psychologist with a history of working with Gifted? As Mack points out, a good chunk of Coulson's career has been about people with powers: The Avengers Initiative, TAHITI, and now he's involved with the Inhuman. The blueprints and student list for it are inside the Toolbox. The vibranium coating is thus both for practical and symbolic use since such a material was originally used by the first avenger. He keeps it a secret from his own subordinates because it's need-to-know information.

Coulson doesn't really know everything about the Bahrain incident
He thinks May was brokenhearted because she failed to save Katya, not because she had to put her down personally.
  • Confirmed in "Scars".

If Coulson is making Avengers Academy, it won't include the original comic book class
Instead it will have the early marvel teen heroes such as Cloak and Dagger and the New Warriors, and possibly Blizzard (if they fish him out of the ocean). This way they can avoid an Age Lift if and when they choose to bring the Young Avengers and the comic book class into the MCU.

Scorch isn't dead
He ascended to a higher plan of existence and now exists as essentially living fire, his pyrokinetic abilities enabling him to control the massive amounts of Extremis energy that he was dosed with.

Major characters from this show will never have roles in non-summer films aside from cameos
Even though the entire MCU is connected, Marvel knows that not everybody is interested in every facet of the universe. Some people only see the movies, while some only watch the TV shows. It's easy to have events happen concurrently in both the movies and the shows, but having one character have something major happen to them in a film while not showing it on the show would just be confusing and frustrating.

The relationship the shows have to the movies have been relatively minor, aside from the big hulabaloo after Captain America 2. Avengers 2 was only affected in 2, minor ways: one plotline in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D answered a question that the movie never asked (the movie starts in media res with the Avengers attacking a HYDRA fortress, which the S.H.I.E.L.D. team found after a lot of spywork), and answered a minor question with another show plotline (where did Fury get a Helicarrier from? Coulson has been making it in secret, which is the mysterious Theta Protocol). So far, no one has been doing all that much interaction with the big guys, who are mostly out of their league. This may change when the Inhumans movie is released, because Skye is one and her mother is the leader of La Xing.

Fury's Hellicarrier from The Age of Ultron is The Iliad
Which serves as an Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. tie-in for the Avengers 2. Fury gets Hill back to his team from Stark, Hill and Fury both have access to Coulson through the toolbox, and Coulson is currently being willingly taken to Gonzales, who has The Iliad as his base of operations. So far we only ever saw it on sea in the show, but nothing indicates it isn't airborne. This could not only be an opportunity for Coulson and Gonzales to combine their efforts against HYDRA, but to directly help the Avengers as well.
  • Even better: it turned out to be Coulson's ship, not Gonzales'.

Daredevil and Skye will have their The Oner together
Should Daredevil ever show up in an episode and have him and Skye team up to take down a group of mooks, this should happen.

The Bus was stripped before flying to the Artic
SHIELD is under a resource crunch. If Coulson was going to fly it into a mission knowing that it would be destroyed, he'd take everything he didn't need for that mission off of it first. The contents of FitzSimmon's lab, the bar, and anything else of use on it except the briefing room computer and the systems needed to fly the Bus to its death are currently at the Playground.

Nick Fury will scold Coulson for destroying The Bus again
He will say something like, "Really!? Really, Coulson!? Several months after you become Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. you had to destroy The Bus again?! Don't you realize how limited our resources are now!?"Then Coulson will say something like this in self-defense, "But, Sir, at least I saved the bar!"The scene then immediately cuts to both of them drinking together in the bar. Fury then, while half-drunk, will say something like, "I'm glad you at least removed the bar from The Bus before you destroyed it." Coulson will reply with something like, "Yeah, Sir, because it's a really nice one."

Whitehall's subconsciousness is in Jiaying's mind
With Jiaying repeating Whitehall's line of "Discovery requires experimentation", it's possible that Whitehall has somehow entered into Jiaying's subconsciousness.

Skye will figure out Jiaying's deception
  • If she briefed S.H.I.E.L.D. on Jiaying before the meeting (which them knowing her name suggests she did), then her Healing Factor probably came up. Skye will realize that Gonzales wouldn't waste his time shooting someone that he knew couldn't be killed and figure out what Jiaying did.
  • Confirmed.

Grant Ward will be the primary antagonist of season 3.
The season 2 finale will end on a Cliffhanger or Sequel Hook that sets it up, such as him stealing the device on Gonzales' ship or being transformed into a supervillain like Taskmaster or Grim Reaper. Given how "Scars" implied that Bobbi is the one who dragged Kara from her safehouse so Baskhi could brainwash her, Grant's Evil Plan will be to punish the one who ordered her to infiltrate HYDRA in the first place; either "Real" S.H.I.E.L.D.'s council or Coulson.

Besides Maria, none of SHIELD's higher ups liked Coulson
He's been called Fury's favorite once too many and none of them liked him for it.

Bobbi will be Brainwashed and Crazy with Faustus Method
Ward and Kara did this to Bakshi before, so why won't they do it to Bobbi as well?

Grant Ward will become the new Red Skull.
He'll resemble the Ultimate Marvel version.

The S.H.I.E.L.D agents who left Garrett to die in his backstory were actually HYDRA agents.
  • This may never get confirmed due to Garrett's arc being over, but it makes perfect sense. Ask yourself something: HYDRA was so well-hidden that even Fury, the director of S.H.I.E.L.D and a level ten operative, didn't know about them until the events of Winter Soldier (he sensed that something was fishy, but he didn't know the specifics until Cap told him), so how did an agent much lower in rank than Fury discover HYDRA and join up with them? Answer: He didn't. A HYDRA agent attempted to recruit him sometime before the events of the show. Being a loyal agent, he probably refused, at which point HYDRA decided that he needed to be dealt with, so Pierce (or someone else high up in the chain of command) had him assigned to a suicide mission and made sure that there was no extraction team, hoping that he would die. We know the rest: Garrett lived, but his loyalty to SHIELD was broken, leading to him joining HYDRA.
  • This could also explain why there was no extraction team for Fitz and Ward in "The Hub": someone in HYDRA (possibly even Ward himself) was using the same strategy in the hopes that they could convince Fitz to flip.

Grant Ward spent about 10-15 years in suspended animation as a kid.
We know that the first "Ragtag" flashback took place fifteen years ago, making Ward roughly 30 in the present day (he was old enough to be sent to boarding school, but young enough that there was some question about whether he was going to be tried as an adult). Also, it's clear both from his and Christian's description of his childhood that they grew up fairly close in age (assuming either of them is telling something remotely like the truth). But if Christian is only a few years over 30, it doesn't make sense for him to be an influential senator (he would have been constitutionally barred from being a senator at all until pretty recently!); also, he looks significantly older than that, being played by the 51-year-old Tim DeKay.

If Grant spent a while not aging between the flashback in "The Well" and the flashback in "Ragtag", that would explain this time discrepancy; possibly Christian convinced his parents to do this as part of his "Grant needs to be kept away from Thomas" narrative.

     Season 3 

Rosalind will be a Disc-One Final Boss
Just like Whitehall was this to the first half of season 2, she'll be a big threat for the first half of Season 3 until she gets killed off, either in a You Have Outlived Your Usefulness moment by Ward or by an Inhuman she's kept in some prison.
  • She is killed off alright, much earlier than halfway through the season and after finding out to her horror that she was in fact working for HYDRA (something she did not know).

Lash will be a Disc-One Final Boss

A member of The Inhuman Royal Family will make a guest appearance
Most likely Karnak, given his design and abilities could be portrayed on the show's low budget.

Lash is Raina
Similar spines, tracking abilities consistent with clairvoyance, and we know what dying and coming back does to a person's mind in the series.

Simmons carries the Inhuman gene.
Would be a good dollop of karma for her, given her wariness of Inhumans last season, and an interesting arc to explore. Don't even need her to undergo terrigenesis straightaway - just the idea that she carries the gene would provoke some deep thinking.

Other points for (Note: 'Laws of Nature' spoilers follow.):

  • As gleaned from its time aboard the Iliad, the Monolith seems to turn liquid in the presence of Inhumans, or when they are nearby. There is a scene where the Monolith goes liquid in the sole presence of S.H.I.E.L.D. personnel - this could be because one or more of them carry the dormant Inhuman gene.
  • In S.O.S., Part 2, a significant amount of time passed between Fitz accidentally opening the Monolith's box and him leaving the room; in fact, he was standing directly in front of the door at one point! Why didn't the Monolith absorb him?
  • In Laws of Nature, Fitz climbs into the Monolith's container and begins punching it in desperation. Still no response from the Monolith. All Simmons had to do to get absorbed was stand in front of the box after Fitz accidentally broke the lock.

Point against:

  • Simmons carries alien antibodies as a result of her encounter with the Chitauri virus in FZZT. It could be this alien trace that the Monolith is responding to.
  • While the Monolith reacted to Daisy's presence (who's Inhuman), it also reacted to Prof. Randolph (who's Asgardian).
  • It was pointed out the liquification appeared to occur on some kind of natural, irregular, cycle, but not an Earth-based one, which then caused the suggestion it was some kind of cycle from another planet. The planet Simmons was trapped on had multiple moons, and their interactions along with that of the planet's sun would lead to irregular natural cycles.
  • In "4,722", Jemma confirms that the portal opens (aside from artificially on the Earth side) in response to the tidal force of the planet's moons.

The ACTU will eventually become SWORD.
This one seems fairly obvious to anyone familiar with SWORD's principles from the comics. Another covert organization, similar to SHIELD but dealing almost exclusively with extraterrestrial threats? The ACTU, when faced with the full threat of global Terragenesis, could easily grow to become a global organization to complement SHIELD. Expect lots of Gray-and-Gray Morality in the coming conflict, as they don't seem completely evil (although perhaps more ruthless than Coulson's SHIELD).

Lincoln is Rosalind Price's son.
One of Rosalind's aliases surname was Campbell and she did look at his picture as if she knew him.

Joey is being introduced as a love interest for Mack.
Mack was pretty Ambiguously Gay in season 2 (gender neutral discussion of his 'exes', the whole thing with Tim in the One Door Closes flashbacks), and the first new character introduced in season 3 is a new Inhuman who's openly gay and who will be stuck indefinitely in SHIELD's base. Marvel has caught some heat for the total lack of LGBT characters in the MCU, and this is a low-risk way to head off that criticism far away from the main movies. Plus, bonus irony points given Mack's Fantastic Racism towards Inhumans and anything alien-related for most of season 2.

The monolith sent Simmons to Battleworld.
She was running from something and there doesn't look to be much farming going on in that landscape.

Werner Von Strucker will eventually turn on Ward.
A lot of people are making the comparison of the Ward/Werner relationship to that of Garrett/Ward. The twist is that if Werner becomes the new leader of HYDRA, his first order of business is to turn on Ward (and possibly have him killed).

Professor Randolph met an Inhuman once.
She was the distracting firedancer he met in the 19th century when he was investigating the Monolith.

Ward is going to put Lance through Hydra programming.
So he can force him to kill Bobbi.

Andrew's body wasn't in the pharmacy when it exploded in "Devils You Know"
  • We didn't see the other HYDRA thug leave the store with Werner, nor did we see anything of the dead body save dark pants and shoes... with the general chaos surrounding Ward, there was ample time for Werner or Andrew to kill that guy with no repercussions, then burn the evidence.
  • HYDRA kidnapped Garner and made it look like he died. What better way to keep something hanging over May's head to keep The Cavalry at bay? The body will be very hard to identify, if there's anything left, and they can pull the same trick they did with Mike in Season 1: fake the death, trot him out later on their side.
  • He was in it, but since he was Lash at the time, he wasn't seriously hurt.

Lash is Rosalind Price.
  • When Daisy is by Mack's bed in the hospital and discusses seeing Lash's shadow becoming human, the question "Who is he?" is immediately followed by Rosalind Price opening the curtains—in other words, an implied Answer Cut. In addition, Rosalind and Lash have never been seen together at once, and there is the implicit assumption that Lash is male, leaving the door open for Samus Is a Girl
    • Point against though is that during Lash's first appearance Rosalind is clearly seen on the Subway in DC surrounded by her men and with Coulson and Hunter as witnesses.

Lash is Dr. Andrew Garner
A whole heap of clues piled into "Devils You Know".
  • May accuses Andrew of disappearing during their vacation, which frees him up for the time frame when Lash became active.
  • Andrew seems particularly interested in seeing Alisha in containment, which would be understandable if he thought he had just killed her, and is also upset with Coulson for not telling him about her. Frye may have been tracking down the Inhumans for him, but Lash was supplying him with the names - which Andrew would have been getting from S.H.I.E.L.D. and would explain why he was upset Coulson didn't tell him about Alisha. Lash is seen to hunt Inhumans indiscriminately, even killing his only Inhuman ally when he was compromised, and yet didn't kill Daisy when he had the perfect opportunity to do so.
  • We never see the face of the body in the convenience store, Werner is the only HYDRA goon seen escaping from it, and he looks terrified. Nevermind the title of the episode, which implies a False Friend.
  • The reason he thinks it is "necessary" to kill Inhumans is because of what happened to May in Bahrain. He wants to prevent any similar situations in the future.
  • His and May's vacation/attempted reconciliation between seasons was cut short by him leaving, without explaining why. Going through Terrigenesis and needed to control his powers without wanting May to find out after eating the wrong fish?
    • Confirmed at the end of "Among Us Hide...".

Lash didn't kill Daisy in "Devils You Know" because he's running out of time.
His transformation from human form to "hulked out" form may be temporary. At the time, he's about to transform back to his human form, so he didn't take any risk to kill Daisy because it could've exposed his identity if he failed to kill her.

Lash is Triplett
His first experience with Inhumans is when Raina activates the diviner and petrifies herself and Skye. Then the stuff does the same to him. Also, his mission was to destroy the place. He genuinely thinks the Inhuman are a threat because he's been out of the loop with the rest of SHIELD for a while.

Ward is planning to run Andrew through Hydra brainwashing and send him against May
Because putting May in a position where she had no choice but to kill Andrew would (to Ward's warped mind) be justice for causing him to shoot Kara.

The return expedition to the Monolith Planet will retrieve "It" instead of/along with Will
There's no way they're done with "It" yet. Introducing it for just one episode would be a waste. It will be a Mage Killer in the form of an anti-Inhuman.
  • Confirmed. Will was dead before the expedition was launched, and It returned with Ward.

Rosalind was part of the NASA team that sent Will to the Monolith planet
One of her previous jobs was with NASA, and she must've had some experience with aliens and alien artifacts to be chosen to lead the ATCU.
  • Confirmed, though she wasn't in charge of that project and didn't know its true purpose.

Rosalind is really Abigail Brand
I know it is a bit out there, but think about it. What would make the higher ups want to choose Price to lead a alien-hybrid hunting team. She doesn't seem to have much experience in it. Despite the militaristic method, she seems to be more willing to capture the Nu Humans instead of flat-out killing them. This, along with the multiple names, and similarity to Coulson, may suggest two possibilities. Either she is secretly the half alien agent, trying to secretly "protect" others, or she is yet to awaken her alien DNA.
  • Related to the theory above where ATCU will become S.W.O.R.D., and Abigail is a member of S.W.O.R.D. in the comics.

Gideon Malick will become the Red Skull as a Legacy Character
His full being Albert Gideon Malick.

The entity whom Will calls "it" is really named It.
We're under false impression that it was just a pronoun for the entity. "It" is actually the entity's real name.
  • Its name is really Alveus, and is the MCU Hive.

Will is It
How is it that he and he alone survived all this time on the planet? Not to mention that he seduces the one person who might be technologically advanced enough to return to Earth and then return for him, opening the portal permanently. Besides, have you ever seen It and Will in the same scene together? Will took a long time to reveal himself to Simmons, perhaps he was just gauging her abilities to see what she was capable of before deciding whether or not to destroy her or use her for his own purposes.
  • Semi-confirmed. He wasn't It when he met Jemma, but was taken over by It after she escaped.

Rosalind doesn't know that Gideon Malick is HYDRA
The whole "ally is secretly an enemy" trope is pretty overdone in this show and they literally just resolved the same thing with Andrew/Lash. Her calling Gideon is a Red Herring - she actually thinks he's "just" a member of the World Security Council, as Powers Boothe played one in The Avengers.
  • If she didn't know, she knows by the end of Many Heads, One Tale.

The mysterious alien entity—"Death"—will be the Big Bad of season 3.
Season 2 started off with Arc Villain Daniel Whitehall, who was killed in the midseason finale. So far, season 3 has consisted of a Big Bad Ensemble of Grant Ward and Lash. As of the most recent episode (as of writing this), "Chaos Theory", Lash has been captured, leaving Ward and Gideon Malick as the remaining villains. Furthermore, promotional materials for the upcoming episode "Many Heads, One Tale" suggest that Ward may finally be in over his head, and the following episode is titled his famous arc word, "Closure", which may imply that Ward is finally Killed Off for Real. The midseason finale is titled "Maveth", which is the Hebrew word for "death" as written on the scroll to describe the Kree Monolith. Will later refers to the entity as "Death". Thus, with no more human or Inhuman villains left, the mysterious entity comes back in full force, setting the stage for the latter half of the season.
  • As of the Mid Season Premiere Bouncing Back it appears that the Inhuman (Hive) will be the Big Bad.

Gideon Malick will be Season 3's Big Bad.
The seasoned villain has the means and intelligence to match Coulson, his first couple of appearances show that he's quite The Spymaster, not to mention that Rosalind Price currently works for him, making him The Man Behind the Man. He seems overall more competent at rebuilding Hydra than Ward's thuggish attempts so far. Finally, he's played by known star Powers Boothe, and he's credited with 17 episodes on IMDB. He's also a villain who's been around since the first Avengers movie.
  • He's the Big Bad of the first half of the season, but once Hive comes back from the other world, Malick is Demoted to Dragon.

The ancient Inhuman worshipped by HYDRA will be an Expy of Apocalypse.
Similar to how Jiaying was an Expy of Magneto. What is known about the character (immortal, infinitely powerful super-powered being with a large cult of followers) does fit with with Apocalypse's character.
  • Confirmed.

The Inhuman on the other side of the Monolith portal is Thane.
As an incredibly powerful Inhuman from the comics, he would certainly qualify to be banished through the portal (maybe by an older member of the Inhuman royal family?). Not to mention, as the son of Thanos, he would effectively tie the show into the larger MCU in a huge way. It would only require a few minor changes to his backstory, and he would make for a great Final Boss for Season 3. This would also provide an opportunity to introduce the Black Order into the MCU canon.
  • It's Hive.

HYDRA will not quite succeeded in its season 3 goal
They will retrieve someone from Maveth, but It will not be it. Out will come one or several of the Guardians. An Offscreen Moment of Awesome was pulled, which is to be seen in the Vol 2.

Mitchell Carson will return with the Pym Particles and become a recurring villain
While one might think that his next obvious appearance in the series would be Ant-Man And The Wasp given that he is typically an Ant-Man villain in the comics, we may actually see him here, due to his connection to HYDRA.

Ward will be stranded on the planet.
Coulson will make sure Ward is stuck there as a means of Cruel Mercy.
  • His body makes it back.

The entity on the other side will possess either Ward or Coulson to come back through the portal.
IE. why HYDRA keeps sending people through - to get possessed and come back, they just couldn't figure out the come back part before they died. Malick is banking on it possessing Ward, as Ward is his best asset and an ideal candidate, and safe money is on this as the Grant Ward character seems to have run its course... but Coulson going through the portal is a huge curveball, and him getting possessed instead would play right into previous WMG of Coulson somehow becoming season 3's Big Bad. It would also save Ward for another day, and possibly lead to his long rumored (though not really deserved) redemption arc as he opposes Evil Coulson.
  • Confirmed. It possesses Ward after Coulson kills him.

Lash and It will kill each other
Lash exists to kill dangerous Inhumans, and It is an Inhuman so dangerous that it was exiled to another planet to stop it, and the other Inhumans still feared its memory centuries later. He's going to attack It if he finds It, but It won't die easy.
  • As an alternative, they will have a massive final battle... and while grappling, will be flung through a portal to Maveth.
    • Lash smacks Hive around for a while, but is killed by one of Hive's swayed followers while he rescues Daisy.

Thomas Ward might take his brother's place in Team Coulson
Assuming he lives long enough, he's certainly established himself as a Good Counterpart who could be the hero his brother wasn't. The team wouldn't have such a hard time trusting him. He's also the only Ward brother left now.

"It" will learn everything about the modern world through the bodies it possesses
Considering all the skills Ward has as a spy, as well as all the knowledge of SHIELD and Hydra, Hydra's plans for getting It off world are gonna be a case of Gone Horribly Right.
  • Confirmed, since it knew about Fitz and Simmons etc.

"It" is Hive
Fits the Secret Warriors connection, as well as the HYDRA thing. Doesn't tie in to the Inhumans, but that is probably just an adaptation thing.
  • Confirmed.

After "It" is killed Ward will be reborn without memories
Considering Brett Dalton's popularity, it is unlikely get rid of him for good. That could make for the perfect Tomato in the Mirror redemption story.
  • Hive said it can only take over dead bodies. Ward is dead and still dead, what we saw was Hive repairing his vessel. Ward is still gone and what is walking around is an ancient Inhuman wearing a Ward suit. Like Will the only thing alive of Ward is his memories. Hive's true form has been revealed as totally alien and composed of tentacle and the Ward everyone sees is the form it takes to appear human. Like Malik's brother, like Will and like Ward it consumes its hosts but retains the memories . If Hive was destroyed or driven out the only thing left would be a corpse.

"It" will be searching for Lash in order to possess him
It probably requires a better than human body as a proper shell.
  • "It" says that it cannot "feed" on Inhumans. When Hive encounters Lash he's not even able to use his sway on him because Lash's powers directly neutralize Hive's parasites.

"It" isn't the Inhuman
The Inhuman was sent to the planet while "It" already inhabited it. They have been fighting there all that time. The real Inhuman took over Coulson, and isn't quite as evil as Hydra remembers.

"It" will be supernatural in origin.
With the Doctor Strange movie coming up Marvel will be introducing magic to the Marvel Cinematic universe. Since the show has had loose connections to the movies and even future movies (hydra, inhumans, the new helicarrier) its not far out there that the creature that hydra thinks is an inhuman could be something extra-dimensional, maybe even from the dark dimension or whatever world Dormammu will be from. That would better explain why it jumps from body to body as being a mostly spiritual being it wouldn't have any solid form and needs a host body. "It" in ward's body will be the biggest threat for the rest of the season and maybe the next season, leading up to the release of Doctor Strange.

"It" will try to acquire Jiaying's corpse
Her vampiric abilities could prove very useful after the creature had been weakened by millennia of starvation. Whitehall's research might also be of interest.
  • As it turns out, It has regenerative abilities of its own, and they're downright horrifying.

Giyera's powers are generally telekinetic, not just metal-oriented
Giyera can control living tissue. This is why Banks didn't drop his gun when it was turned on his own head.

Simmons was psychologically tortured by Giyera and Ward

The "Closure" recap notes that for all the screaming Simmons did while under torture, she appeared rather physically unharmed. The truth is simple but sinister: while Malick toyed with idea of physical torture, it was decided that leaving too many marks might discourage Fitz's cooperation or increase the likelihood of resisting. So he ordered Giyera and Ward to bait Simmons into thinking they were going to hurt her, and then pulled out the rug by revealing their real plan: playing a copy of Fant4stic while using the hammer and wrench to hit her if she stopped watching it. She held out fairly well, but when Ward came back after receiving Coulson's call, he took the torture to next level by playing Josh Trank's initial cut of Fant4stic. The Even Evil Has Standards trope makes guess sound this extremely unlikely, but there will be a time when villains with standards cross the Moral Event Horizon. There will be, and if they did use Fant4stic for psychological torture, that's when they cross it.

It-possessed Ward carries and keeps Coulson's detached prosthetic arm for a joke
When It/Ward confront Coulson again, he will say something like "Need a hand, Coulson?"
  • Confirmed that he still has it. He places it on a dinner table during "Spacetime". However, in their confrontation, it's Coulson who makes the lame hand joke.

Audrey is going to be more important in the near future
There was no way she could have been a major character in seasons 1-2, as Amy Acker was committed to being a major character on Person of Interest at the time. But that show is now over, so she's now available to play Audrey Nathan more frequently.

President Ellis' comments to Coulson in "Bouncing Back" about the ATCU's role are for both in-universe and out-of-universe reasons
Since the President maintains that the ATCU will remain the public face of the operations while S.H.I.E.L.D. will call the shots in secret, it seems all too likely that this development will be invoked later on when Civil War comes out to once again justify continuing to keep Coulson & Co. out of the movie series like Age of Ultron did (instead of secretly rebuilding a Helicarrier for Nick Fury over several episodes and then being deliberately ignored).

Giyera and Lucio will make a Heel–Face Turn
After "Inside Man", it seems like a valid possibility that they will eventually break free from Hive and get disillusioned by HYDRA and their cruel deeds.

Malick's death will cause more problems for SHIELD than fixing them
Whether Malick dies by SHIELD, Hive or someone else, his death will cause problems for the world at large since he's so ingrained in a lot of world politics and finances.

Malick's daughter will become Madam Hydra
Like the saying goes, cut one head off another will appear.
  • Hive kills her to teach Malick a lesson in sacrifice.

HYDRA is attempting to make a Terrigen Bomb.
At The Stinger for "Watchdogs", the item Blake delivered to HYRDA appears to be a nuclear bomb. Since just having a nuke seems to be too vanilla even for HYDRA, it is possible they will try to turn it into a Terrigen bomb to create more Inhumans for Hive.
  • By the events of 'The Singularity' Hive has gathered all the items that can stop him, and has all the people he needs to recreate the Kree experiments that created the first inhumans. Hydra is dead in the water courtesy of Talbot, so Hive alone controls the nuke. At this point it is fair to say the finale will be dealing with launching the Terrigen Bomb into space and detonating it.

Hive is literally a Hive Mind
It appears that Hive not only stores the memory of all people he ever possessed, but traits of their personalities too. At one point in private with Lucio and Giyera when asked "What are you?" he replies "What are we." Finally, Simmons theorizes that flesh-eating spores are not generated by Hive, but are part of him. It could be that Hive absorbs each of its hosts, with them sharing a symbotic relationship together with the original Inhuman conciousness. Hive seems to want to hide it from other humans, even HYDRA heads, referring to itself in a singular tense. However, when alone with Inhumans, with whom he shares a special, unrevealed plan, he has no need to hide and casually shows their true self.
  • Confirmed. It's shown to have Ward's memories, and also those of Malick's younger brother, who served as a host for a time.

The traitor in the Secret Warriors is Joey.
It won't be Daisy, since she's a (arguably the) main character; it won't be Elena, since having the newest member of the team be the traitor may be too predictable; it won't be Lincoln, since he's Daisy's love interest. That leaves Joey.
  • The "traitor" is Daisy by means of mind control.

The traitor in the Secret Warriors is Lincoln

Him just coming clean to Daisy about his past would make it all the more tragic, plus he's the only member who has been physically near Hive long enough that they may have been infected by his Inhuman-controlling parasites (at least,the implication is that he can control other Inhumans) while they were raiding the building in "Spacetime".

  • The "traitor" is Daisy by means of mind control.

There is no traitor in Secret Warriors
  • Coulson is being overly paranoid. The whole "Mole in the Team" plot point is getting really overused in this show (even if it would likely be caused by mind control in this instance), so it would be a nice change of pace if they were actually wrong about this for once. Not to mention that it would tie in to the plot of Captain America: Civil War rather nicely. If there is a traitor, they'll probably be freed from Hive's mind control (none of the Secret Warriors are likely serving HYDRA willingly) before the Season ends.
  • The "traitor" is Daisy by means of mind control.

The person who dies in Daisy's vision is May
The reason for this is fairly simple: May's the only one in the main cast who knows how to fly a Quinjet, and it's unlikely she'd trust the job of flying to anyone but herself. This is shown when she flew Zephyr One back to the Playground while wounded, which could be possible Foreshadowing. Plus, in Daisy's first vision of the future, the only person who wasn't present was May (and Mack, so he's a possibility as well), which could be another piece of Foreshadowing. Whether or not they'll know it'll be a suicide mission or why Elena's necklace was onboard as well remains to be seen.

The person who dies in Daisy's vision is Lincoln
He's probably the most expendable (being the newest main character, the least-beloved character of the main cast (everyone else has legions of fan who'd yell for blood if they were killed off, but Lincoln's fan are pretty quiet), and while one of the few supers, he's got the most generic powerset), he's strongly tied to main character Daisy so even in spite of the above it'd still be a Tear Jerker, and with Daisy currently mind-controlled by Hive, who has remnants of Grant Ward in him (and based on the preview released, is creepily affectionate towards her), its not difficult to see him as seeing Lincoln as a potential hypotenuse.Hell, its likely that he'll go do something crazy-stupid as a last-ditch effort to free Daisy, only for Hive to make Daisy kill him for it, so when she does get free, she's stuck dealing with the fact she killed someone she was intimate with, especially if he dies saying the L-word. Season 4 can then have her deal with this and trying to cope with having killed him.

  • Confirmed, although in a Heroic Sacrifice, rather than his death being an intentional choice by Ward.

Others will join the Secret Warriors
  • This is not a forum.
At this point, only four members, one of whom is currently Brainwashed and Crazy, so that over the next four episodes, they will have a recruitment drive of sorts to get more members to stop Hive and save Daisy, likely after they've made a 'vaccine' for Hive's control parasites. Most likely candidates:
  • James, Lincoln's 'friend', who may-or-may-not-be the MCU version of J.T. James of the Secret Warriors.
  • Manifold (Eden Fesi), since he was name-dropped previously as an Inhuman they've rescued, and he joined the team in the comics after a member was benched temporarily.
  • Alicia, to add more gender-balance to the team and just because she's an available ally.
    • Hive got to her first.
  • Creel, since he got Adaptational Heroism in the show and his son was on the team in the comics.
  • Deathlok, because they could use a member of the team who can act as a token non-Inhuman.

Nobody will die in the vision
At the last minute, Manifold will be able to pull them to safety, and they'll realize that the future is mutable after all.

Whatever happens in the next few episodes, HYDRA will no longer be the threat it used to be.
With the leaders being killed or arrested by SHIELD, and with HIVE and his Inhumans taking over, with their defeat HYDRA would be on their last legs by the next movies.

  • Unless there's some underground branch that makes a resurgence, confirmed.

Lash & Creel will be key to killing Hive.
We've seen Lash No-Sell a lot of attacks, including other Inhumans' powers; it's possible he could resist Hive's control. Plus Lash's urge to kill other Inhumans may be meant so he'll kill Hive. Meanwhile, Creel's ability to overcome the Diviner may put him into a "daywalker" sort of state; he's not Inhuman, so Hive can't control him, but he can mimic Inhumanity enough that Hive can't just eat him either. Furthermore, Creel might be able to copy Hive's spores & give him a taste of his own medicine. Also, the Inhuman "vaccine" Simmons developed from Creel's blood might be adapted into a cure for Hive's control. Two Gunmen & a Gun.

  • Partially Confirmedish. Lash did play a key role, and clearly was Hive's greatest weakness, but ultimately does not stop him. Creel does not play any role whatsoever.

Lincoln will be practicing more precise control of his powers.
Because they will turn out to be the only reliable way to remove the Hive infestation. Hive's spores infect Inhuman brains, and Lincoln's already been shown to use his powers to stimulate Werner's comatose mind. With enough control, he could probably fry the spores from the heads of any Inhumans who are infected with them. As another thought, maybe all the myths of the devil and such being cast down by heavenly powers and the supreme god wielding thunderbolts are a reflection of another Inhuman with similar power playing a critical part in casting Hive down the first time.
  • The only known way to remove the infection, as of Hive's death, was Lash, and Lincoln certainly won't be curing the remnants of his army even if they aren't cured already.

The person who dies in Daisy's vision is either Fitz or Simmons
No real evidence within the vision itself, per se, but they are coming worryingly close to resolving their various relationship issues. They were on the verge of getting together at the end of Season 2, before they were drawn apart, but now they are once again on the verge of properly repairing all their issues and initiating a full-fledged romantic relationship. Anyone who has watched a lot of Mutant Enemy productions knows that this is just when every single projectile in the universe will hone in on the two characters until one is dead.

Alveus isn't Hive's name
Judging from all the hints, Hive is far older than the Latin language. It was probably referred to as mn̥gh (Proto-Indo-European for "many") or maybe something even older. Or perhaps he was named Hive... and that's why the word is absent from both the modern reconstructions of PIE and the Egyptian language.

After the events of this season, Daisy will go back to being Skye
After what she's done under the control of Hive, after being freed it's possible she won't want to be associated with 'Daisy Johnson' anymore (especially as her family tree already consists of violent murderers), and will go back to the name she chose for herself to try and escape it.

The person who dies in the vision is Coulson.
It would be arguably the most unexpected of any of the characters (since he's the protagonist AND has died before), and it would create tremendous storytelling potential for season 4, with there now being a power vacuum at SHIELD. Effectively, Coulson will die to atone for the sin of bringing Hive back to Earth, and this act will reunite him with Rosalind. The episodes immediately leading up to the season finale subtly imply that he will play a role in the plot, since only he and Daisy have Kree blood running through their veins, and thus could be a target by Hive for his Evil Plan.

Lash was weakened by the Inhuman vaccine.
Lash is killed by James piercing his chest with a heated chain. Considering all the other attacks he has no sold in the season (bullets, Daisy's concussive blast, Lincoln's electricity), it seems a little anticlimactic. It makes more sense, when you remember that Andrew was given an IV of an Inhuman vaccine derived from Carl Creel. It failed to prevent his complete transformation into Lash, but it likely nerfed his healing factor, or whatever defensive ability he had that made him unstoppable.

The thing Dr. Radcliffe built at the end of the finale is Jocasta.
It looks feminine, and he was telling his female-voiced computer that she's about to be born (if he was referring to her). So the computer is J.O.C.A.S.T.A., mentioned in Avengers: Age of Ultron.

    Season 4 

Elements of Marvel's Most Wanted will be incorporated into Season 4.
Namely Bobbi and Hunter returning and Oded Fehr's character appearing as a villain. Looks like Daisy is on the "most wanted" list instead!

Season 4 will feature magic.
Doctor Strange will be released early in the season, after all.
  • Seems to be confirmed, with Gabriel Luna showing up as Ghost Rider. With the introduction of ghosts and the Darkhold so far, we can easily confirm this as accurate.

Season 4 won't start where Season 3 left off. It'll be all a big How We Got Here
We'll see the consequences that lead to Daisy going rogue and why Coulson is hunting her down.

The new Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. is Maria Hill
Post Civil War, Tony is a broken mess, Cap is on the run and Nick Fury is still Technically Dead. Both Fury and Hill were quite obviously absent in Civil War and various PTB stated we'd see what they were up to"'soon", maybe prepping for the return of SHIELD as a UN group?

The Dream Sequence at the beginning of "Absolution" will actually come to fruition in season 4
It might not happen until the season finale, or at least the mid-season finale. Also, it would oddly reveal that Daisy can now predict the future much like Raina or Charles.

Coulson is still the Director of S.H.I.E.L.D.
The piece of The Stinger dealing with Radcliffe was making a big deal about Life Model Decoys, right? What if this is merely Coulson's own LMD taking part in field operations, referring to his real self as "the Director" safely back at base? He just used a holographic copy of himself in the season finale and has been getting more comfortable with lifelike cybernetics via his artificial hand, so maybe he volunteered his likeness as a test subject for the program. The significance of Radcliffe's scene with AIDA is that it could be the first time an AI is being downloaded into an LMD, as opposed to a living subject's brain patterns.
  • The new Director is Jeffrey Mace, who Coulson had a hand in recruiting due to the reborn S.H.I.E.L.D. needing a powered person they could trust running the organization.

Daisy is still working for S.H.I.E.L.D
The boss that Daisy is working for now is Cap. The hacker has come full-circle and is now once again working against S.H.I.E.L.D., i.e. the post-Civil War Pro-Accords S.H.I.E.L.D.. The renewed push to register Inhumans drove her into the camp of the original shield bearer. When Mack finally catches up to her and demands an explanation, she will insist that she is the one working for "The Real S.H.I.E.L.D."
  • This idea is used by Jeffrey Mace to neutralize a PR problem by telling the press that Daisy never left S.H.I.E.L.D and was actually on a deep cover assignment to undermine the Watchdogs.

Daisy will join (or at some point, joined) the Secret Avengers.
At the end of Civil War, Steve Rogers busts his allies out of the Raft and goes underground. Who better to help him out then a S.H.I.E.L.D hacker who can Unperson people? She might even have helped with the Raft break out.

Ghost Rider will take over Lola, at least temporarily
Muscle Car, property of Coulson, would cause the two to cross paths sooner, and would bring Lola back into the action. Imagine the possibilities of him hellifiying a flying car.
  • Previews for Episode 4 show Coulson (in Lola) and Ghost Rider in a car chase....

Squadron Supreme ideas
  • The Squadron will be brought to Earth because of the events of Doctor Strange (2016), which involves alternate realities.
    • Nope. No links to Doctor Strange.
  • They will collectively act as The Cape to SHIELD which acts more like The Cowl
  • The members will not be straight up villains but actual heroes that go into Well-Intentioned Extremist territory when they find out about the state of the world such as the Avengers splitting up, the fall of SHIELD, and the stigma that Inhumans suffer.
  • The Squadron will declare themselves protectors of Inhumans and bring them together for safety, with the nations of the world believing it to be for conquest.
  • The actions of the Squadron will bring SHIELD out of the shadows because of public action.
    • SHIELD comes out of the shadows due to the Watchdogs.
  • Members will include Hyperion, Nighthawk, Power Princess, Doctor Spectrum, Speed Demon, Amphibian, Nuke, Arcanna, Inertia, and Haywire.
  • The team will decide to Take Over the World, leading Nighthawk to turn against them.
  • Ghost Rider will be pivotal to stopping the Squadron.
  • They will be scouting for new members, Spider-Man will be mentioned as a candidate and Ghost Rider is also a candidate.
  • There will be mention of Vision going against the Squadron or possibly even appearing on the show where he will be defeated or otherwise thwarted by the team.
    • It was all Ghost Rider, the people gunning after the Inhumans, and the ghosts' tome for half a season. The mid-season finale hints at robotic imposter infiltrators created by Aida and more Inhuman issues. If the Squadron ever does become the big focus, it would at least be alluded to.

The Darkhold Tome will be introduced this season
Some audition footage supposedly for an enemy of Ghost Rider's found its way online and the character makes reference to "him" stealing a book. Given that the Darkhold is Marvel's most well-known book with mystical connections, that makes it the most likely candidate. Plus, it would allow Ao S to introduce many other supernatural characters (such as Jack Russell and Cthon) who have connections to the book.

Additionally (because this "wild" mass guess is lacking a little wildness), based on the fact that the supposed audition refers to "him" stealing the book ten years ago, I don't think the "him" is Robbie Reyes, but Eli Morrow. And Eli used the book's power to transform himself into a spirit with the ability to possess people and turn them into a ghost rider.

  • And as a reference to Superhero Squad, the book will be hidden as something to balance a wobbly chair.
  • It could be what's inside the box in "The Ghost".
  • Confirmed: According to the ghosts introduced in "Meet The New Boss", they ended up as they are now because of the first one introduced messing with that book. And now they want to find it again to reverse it. Apparently, both Hydra and S.H.I.E.L.D. have searching for it without success for awhile

The new director of SHIELD will be Irish, with Jason O'Mara using his natural accent
Because why not? SHIELD is still, on some level, an international organization, so having an Irish man as a member isn't improbable. Plus, it would help the new character stand out from the other white male characters already in the cast.
  • O'Mara uses an American accent.

Ghost Rider will use the Penance Stare on Coulson
Not only would he be forced to relive every bad decision and sin he ever made, but it wouldn't kill him since he's already died once.

Season 4 will be partially based on the Ghost Rider story arc from Ultimate Comics: Avengers

Ghost Rider will have a battle with Hellfire early in the season.
Both characters have similar powers and aesthetics, so a fight would make sense story-wise; the scene will end with Robbie defeating James via a Penance Stare that causes James to flashback to everything he did under Hive's control. Furthermore, this battle will be what gives Robbie the inspiration for Ghost Rider's use of a hellfire infused-chain as a weapon.
  • Confirmed. Ghost Rider even seems to adopt the chain as his weapon.

Ghost Rider, the new Director, and anyone we currently see guest-starring will not be the true villain(s) of the fourth season.
The writers have been pulling a bait-and-switch plot with each successive season so far. Season 1 started with the Centipede Group as the Big Bad Ensemble, only to reveal Garrett and HYDRA as the primary antagonists. Season 2 started off with Daniel Whitehall and Calvin Zabo as main antagonists, but midway through the season shifted to Jiaying as the Big Bad. Season 3 looked like Grant Ward and Rosalind Price were set to be the main antagonists before Malick and then Hive took over. Similarly, Ghost Rider, the new Director, Daisy and whoever else is prominent early on will be subsumed in mid-season by some greater threat that comes out of left field.

Daisy hasn't actually gone rogue.
Nick Fury needed an agent outside of SHIELD control as a failsafe in case the rest of Team Coulson gets crossed off or subverted. Various members of Team Coulson have expressed distrust of the new director, distrust which may be justified given his breaking up the band and putting a kill order on Daisy's head after one too many escapes from Coulson.
  • This idea is used by Jeffrey Mace to neutralize a PR problem by telling the press that Daisy never left S.H.I.E.L.D and was actually on a deep cover assignment to undermine the Watchdogs.

How Robbie became the Ghost Rider is more in line with Johnny Blaze's origins rather than what is told in the comic.
For better or worse, Johnny Blaze's tale is better known by the general public, so they might go this route to avoid becoming too trapped within Ghost Rider's mythos.
  • Seems to be confirmed so far; Robbie mentions his powers came from a Deal with the Devil, which is Johnny's comic origin and Robbie's uncle is still alive,, in stark contrast to the comics, where Robbie's uncle's soul bonds with Robbie.

Mephisto will be the Big Bad this season.
This season's big bad will turn out to be Mephisto.

The new Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. is Mephisto.
He took the form of a man or possessed a man in order to infiltrate S.H.I.E.L.D. for resource in his plan to bring Hell on Earth and to find Ghost Rider. He's deliberately alienated the agents to keep them from suspecting anything. Mephisto's human name could be Roark.

Fitz and Jemma will be Ship Sinking.
They finally became an Official Couple last season but now that it's gonna be difficult now that Jemma is the assistant of the new Director. It won't help that Fitz is keeping ADA a secret from her, which she'll have to report if she finds out.
  • This might still happen as he's seen trying to secretly revive AIDA in "The Patriot".
  • Apparently he wasn't reviving AIDA but investigating Radcliffe in "Wake Up" and seems they are back on track as a couple as of "Hot Potato Soup"
  • They get married in Season 5.

The New Director is The Patriot.
Coulson calls him "Jeffery" as in Jeffery Mace.
  • According to this recap, the closed captioning identifies him as "Mace".
    • Episode 4 ("Uprising") officially confirms his identity as "Jeffrey Mace". Word is still out on whether he acted as Patriot in the past, though he could take up the name in the future. It turns out that he is empowered by a serum created in the "Patriot Program" and he is explicitly referred to by Talbot as "the next Captain America".

The New Director is actually Nighthawk
Much like in Avengers Assemble he will be from another world, where the Kree experiments went somewhat differently and ultimately led to the creation of the Squadron Supreme with all of the members being the result to some degree of Kree experiments.

"Lucy" is Lucy Crumm
In the comics, Lucy is a telepath who can project an image of herself anywhere and cause people to feel hope just by being near them. As this version is a villain, her powers are a twisted variation on that: She projects a ghastly, monstorous image of herself into people's minds and makes them feel fear instead of hope.
  • Her real name was Lucy Bauer. The rest could be true.

The ghosts' goals will coincide with Doctor Strange (2016).
The "him" they were talking about was Baron Mordo.
  • They were talking about Eli Morrow, who was responsible for ghosting them in the first place, and their only goals were to regain their human forms.

Gideon Mace will be a Villain of the Week
Having a villain with the same last name as the new Director of SHIELD is something that can easily make politics difficult, and a man with a mace for a prosthetic hand is something that's easily within the show's special effects budget.
  • Director Mace is gone and Gideon hasn't even been mentioned.

Nadeer killed her brother when she saw him transform
The death wasn't the cause of her hatred toward Inhumans; it was the other way around. Marvel Universe has precedents.
  • He was just stuck in his cocoon until Jemma managed to free him.But she did kill him shortly after he came out of the cocoon, once she saw irrefutable evidence that he was now Inhuman. And when he hit the ocean floor, he was covered in a second Terrigenesis cocoon, implying that Ellen didn't quite kill him.

Alternatively, Nadeer doesn't kill her brother, and he turns out to be a Canon Character All Along.
Nadeer doesn't kill her brother, and he turns out to be a Canon Character All Along.

Final villain for Season 4 candidates
Due to the format the show has used since season 2:
  • Nadeer's Inhuman brother after he emerged from the cocoon.
  • The leader of the Watchdogs.
    • Possibly Felix Blake, as he was supplying them last season.
  • One of the ghosts
    • They were all killed by Ghost Rider.
  • Robbie's uncle. Consider: Was the the real mastermind behind the Darkhold research, put in a coma the one person who might have figured out or got close to the truth, ordered a shooting on his family to force Robbie into a Deal with the Devil and make him a weapon against any ghost which might become a problem... a twist quite in line with what we had in the earlier seasons.
    • Eli's plan was thwarted in episode eight.
  • Aida - we're already starting to see signs of a Face–Heel Turn.
    • Aida's set up to be the villain of the next arc, at least. Jury's still out on whether she's the final threat of the season. It looks like it might actually be Radcliffe, with various Aidas as his minions.
    • [[spoiler:And it looks like Aida might actually be the Big Bad of the third arc, now that Radcliffe is possibly dead and Ivanov has been turned into an
  • Confirmed.
Ghost Rider got his powers from Dormmamu.
Instead of Mephisto creating Ghost Rider, it will be Dormmamu in order to tie into Doctor Strange (2016).
  • So far it's been implied that he got his powers from another Rider. Whether or not he got it from Dormmamu remains to be seen.

Robbie will acquire the Penance Stare
And this will actually help Daisy heal - it gets used on her, and the sins she is forced to relive do not include the actions she took while swayed by Hive or Lincoln's death.

Wong will make a cameo
During the first half of season 4 the characters are dealing with the problems being caused by the Darkhold. Who better to help hem deal with an secure a magical Tome of Eldritch Lore than a master sorcerer librarian from a whole order of badass sorcerers sworn to protect the Earth from mystical threats and who just so happened to have been introduced into the the MCU around the same time?

Eli will eventually open a door to an even worse villain
Rather than being the season's Big Bad, he will be a Disc Two Final Boss. His actions will draw the attention of an otherworldly foe such as Shuma-Gorath or Mephisto.
  • If Aida does become a villain, than his actions were what led to her reading the Darkhold.

To combat Eli Morrow, SHIELD will assemble a modern iteration of the Howling Commandoes
As in, the modern concept that features a team of monsters. Likely candidates include Werewolf by Night, Morbius, and maybe even Blade.

Druid will join the team
An alternative to the above (or perhaps in combination with it), Coulson will seek out the young magic user to combat Eli's new powers. It would also enable them to bring in another member of the Secret Warriors.

Jeffery works for Maximus the Mad.
Jeffery works for Maximus the Mad.
  • He isn't Inhuman.

Robbie will kill Eli and absorb his soul into himself to prevent him from doing anymore damage as a ghost.
Bringing him more in line with the comic version, whom is known for sharing headspace with the ghost of his Satanic uncle.

Senator Nadeer is Inhuman
We know her brother is one - who had a horrifyingly long Terrigenesis that he was apparently conscious through - which means that there's a good choice that she has the gene, too. And since one of the common ways for people to be exposed to Terrigen post-Season Two is through food, one family meal could be all that was needed to hit both of them.
  • Probably, since smashing a Terrigen crystal in front of her does nothing. But the person who smashed it underwent Terrigenesis and then exploded, killing her.

Aida is the MCU version of Alkhema
She's growing beyond her programming, and has shown a willingness to kill and disable in order to protect her secrets, AND has created a working LMD of May in order to infiltrate SHIELD.
  • She isn't the big bad or gone beyond her programming, Radcliffe is behind her 'going rogue' and he was the one who created the May LMD
  • Back to unconfirmed, as she acquired desire to gain emotion, killed Radcliff, and sent the LMD Coulson Team.
  • It seems she's actually Madam Hydra, albeit with a radically different background and origin.
Aida is undertaking a Zeroth Law Rebellion
She was created to act as a "shield" and to take the bullets for human agents. She has determined that the best means of accomplishing this directive is replacing all agents with decoys.

At some point, Daisy will become the New Director of SHIELD
Since Jason O'Mara is only a Guest star and thus Mace is probably not long for this world, and Coulson confirmed he wanted Daisy originally to take the reigns, with her now back in SHIELD and its second-most publicly known operative, in the event of his death she'll be encouraged to take the role leading into Season 5.Ideally, if/when the films bring SHIELD back into their business, they'll be introduced to the new SHIELD formed during the show with Daisy as its director, and the resulting hilarity of her trying to maintain a professional state while trying to not geek out. Just imagine her randomly saying, "You're dreamy...." to Thor.

Nadeer's brother will be an ally to the team
Here's why it might go that way:
  • Jemma helped free him from his cocoon, so he'll be grateful to her.
  • Daisy is back in the team loop now and is in a good position to mentor a new Inhuman in how to deal with their powers.
  • Mace doesn't want the senator to be able to be a threat again, so he'd probably want to keep her brother from becoming her pawn.
  • Due to his sister's actions against people he realizes are like him, Nadeer's brother will feel like his sister sees him as a monster and will hate that he was her motivation to do terrible things and fund the Watchdogs (it's highly unlikely Indian-Americans would have been chummy with them from the start).
  • Cain and Abel. Classic story device and element.
    • It's revealed in "Broken Promises" that they have different viewpoints and get into frequent arguments before he was infected. SHIELD try to rescue him, but she lied to him that SHIELD wants him as a weapon. She's forced to kill him when the Watchdogs question her loyalty.
      • The ending shows Vijay gaining another cocoon, which implies he isn't actually dead, or is reviving. If he was really gone forever they probably wouldn't have done that.

Robbie will be back
Ignoring the fact that Coulson is on record saying that he's probably going to escape from where he's trapped and the Rider won't let them be dragged down given the deal they made, but with so much spin-off potential and his chemistry with the cast, especially Daisy, its unlikely this is the last we'll see of him.Most likely, either the team will get notified a few times he needs help escaping (maybe him communicating through his car or something) leading to a rescue mission, or they'll have the portal left in one-piece so he can get out of where he's trapped (since he was shown able to open it from the other side already), in any case he'll probably return...and be a Threat of the Week, as Eli has taken over his body after being trapped together. We'll see him tear through SHIELD agents and anyone in his way, until Daisy and Gabe get through to Robbie and help him get control. But, with the Rider and Eli inside him, he'll pull a But Now I Must Go and leave to go settle the Rider's scores and what not, leading to a Robbie-focused spin-off.

Bonus points if, for help understanding this, the team seeks out an expert, leading to the introduction of either Johnny Blaze (who Coulson apparently has history with) or better yet, Daimon Hellstrom, either of whom can then stick with Robbie to serve as his mentor figure going into his own show.

  • According to an interview with Lorenzo Henrie (Gabe Reyes), yes, he will return:
    • "I know some things," actor Lorenzo Henrie, who plays Robbie’s brother, Gabe, on Agents of SHIELD told Fan Fest (via Screen Rant). "They are on a winter break right now, but all I know is, I’m pretty sure it’s not the end for Ghost Rider. I know they have some things up their sleeves. It’s gonna be sick."

Mace's mandatory lie detection tests will get exploited by Aida

While it may take time before any details are shown about how an LMD is created, it seems likely that a good amount of physiological data is needed to create a convincing decoy. It is possible that May was the first LMD that Aida created because her recovery at Radcliffe's lab involved many opportunities to scan her brain, take blood samples, take other physiological data from her, and examine her behavior. As seen back in Season 2, Kara and Bakshi could create a nanomask of May using a blood sample and voice recordings. Aida likely used a lot of the medical data she collected to make LMD May, and used the Darkhold to learn about creating an artificial brain that could take any head scan data.

If the 2nd half of Season 4 involves Aida replacing agents with LM Ds, her first target might be any agents or leaders that undergo Mace's mandatory screenings. Those screenings are performed with Fury's lie detector, a machine that uses 96 different bio-metrics to determine if someone is lying. This would be a ripe opportunity for Aida to collect enough data to create convincing copies, and in a short enough period of time to be considered a threat.

Bobbi and Hunter will "return" as LM Ds

Simply because this would be the easiest way to bring them back to the show. They would start off as an attempt by Radcliffe or Aida to introduce SHIELD-approved LM Ds, but circumstances will lead to Coulson's team fighting them if Aida turns evil. Instead of destroying them, LMD Bobbi and LMD Hunter will get disabled, then get re-used in a future mission to fake Bobbi and Hunter's deaths. This will remove them from political scrutiny and surveillance, and allow them to return to a life with SHIELD.

The mysterious benefactor to the Watchdogs

This is the following synopsis for season 4B of Agents of SHIELD:

“On the heels of their encounter with Ghost Rider, their strangest phenomenon yet, the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. suddenly find themselves up against a myriad of new and ongoing threats: The anti-Inhuman Watchdogs are gaining political influence with Senator Nadeer, and uniting behind a mysterious benefactor. Meanwhile, unbeknownst to the team, Aida has kidnapped Agent May and replaced her with a Life Model Decoy. Aida’s evil plans for May and the team remain a mystery.”

So who is this mysterious benefactor? It's not likely Felix Blake—he founded the Watchdogs, and will hopefully return in some fashion, but it's unlikely that it's him, since it's not really a twist (we already know he's part of the Watchdogs). It's gonna be Ian Quinn.

"The Superior" is Samuel Sterns.
Although it's generally referenced only in Broad Strokes, technically "The Incredible Hulk" is still part of MCU canon. We haven't seen Sterns since the end of that film, so this would be an interesting way of bringing him back. And "The Superior" could be another way to say "The Leader." It would make a hell of a Plot Twist.
  • The Superior is a Russian industrialist.

Senator Nadeer and her Watchdog cohorts will be dragged to Hell
Hell exists in this universe and the MCU likes to do Catharsis Factor with its villains, nothing would be more satisfying than having a group of hate filled murderers be stripped of their delusions of being heroes and be punished for their hate crimes.

LMD May will make a Heroic Sacrifice
Think of it. She will be probably shocked to learn that she is not the real May and then perform a Heel–Face Turn, sacrificing herself to ensure Team Coulson's safety. It would be the perfect way to create drama without actually losing a member of the main cast.
  • Confirmed. She blows herself up to allow Jemma and Daisy to escape from LMD Coulson.

What Talbot mean when he said they removed the dangerous stuff from the Hyde serum to make the Patriot serum...
He means that they took out the peppermint. Apparently, that caused the Sanity Slippage.

Aida will perform a Heel–Face Turn against Radcliffe
Fitz has been shown to be one of the few to treat Aida as a person or entity in her own right, and Aida even thanks Fitz when he downloads her program into his phone as he's trying to figure out what happened, there is a chance the Back Up Aida is aware of this and his kindness. Compare to Radcliffe who treats her as lackey at best and has been rather insulting to her performance lately. She may find being treated kindly and respected is preferable to Radcliffe's treatment of her and will rebel against him.

Aida will perform an Eviler than Thou against Radcliffe
She will eventually overthrow Radcliffe and become a villain in her own right. Radcliffe is the one who is still reluctant, Aida is pretty triggerhappy and ruthless.
  • Confirmed. In order to satisfy her directives to protect both Radcliffe and the Framework, she slits his wrists and plugs him in. While his body will eventually bleed out, his mind will remain alive in the Framework. This also eliminates the risk of Radcliffe having second thoughts and shutting down the Framework. Aida remains in the real world to carry out her own plans of gaining emotion and turning Ivanov into an android.

May's simulation will feature the return of Grant Ward
At the end of "The Patriot", Radcliffe recognised that May needs the "ideal opponent" in order to prevent her from breaking free from his Lotus-Eater Machine. Sounds like a good way to bring back the show's Breakout Villain, if only for an episode.
  • As of 'Wake Up' the original simulation was simply her trying to escape the lab playing into her knowledge that she is being held prisoner but she keeps getting better and better, so they switch it up to put her into Bahrain instead.
  • Confirmed. The world-spanning Framework does have Ward in it, and he's Framework Daisy's boyfriend. He's even a good guy here!

How Season 4 Will End:
To begin, Aida will be the Big Bad. She'll become independent, gain a soul from the Darkhold, and possibly kill Nadeer and Radcliffe (leaving The Superior for season 5, perhaps).

Whatever her ultimate plan would be, the team will stop her. As a result, Aida will go berserk and utterly curb stomp all of them. She'll crush Coulson's robot hand and have upgraded her endoskeleton to be immune to Daisy's powers, and durable enough that Mace and Yo-yo would be ineffective. Everyone else would basically be cannon fodder against her. The entire team would be injured and defeated, laying on the ground at the mercy of a robot who has probably gotten the Terminator skin treatment. It looks hopeless.Then there's the roar of an engine.

From just off screen, a flaming black muscle car appears out of nowhere and smashes Aida into a wall, pinning her. SHIELD all give each other various looks that amount to, "You've got to be kidding me. No Way!"

The door opens, and a figure dressed in black gets out. He slowly and menacingly begins to walk towards Aida, his head already flaming. He begins to flip the keys in his hand. He calmly pushes the car out of the way. Aida begs for her new life, stating that she only wants vengeance against SHIELD. She expects him to understand. But then he says to her (He talks! For the first time as a skull!) "Not vengeance. Justice."

Ghost Rider then forces Aida to look at him. "Look into my eyes. Your soul is stained with the blood of the innocent. Feel their pain!"The Penance Stare then burns Aida from the inside out until there's nothing left but a husk. Once it's done, the Rider turns towards SHIELD. Everyone backs away and grabs for weapons they dropped- except for Daisy.

She holds her hands up and moves forward. "Robbie?" she says, in a 'remember me' tone.

The Rider's skull heals over, revealing not Robbie- but Gabriel, his little brother. "I made a deal," he says simply, then gets back in his car and drives away.

Nadeer's latest alliance will inadvertently grant SHIELD legal cover
The man making illegal Artificial Intelligences is now working for Nadeer and has planted his creations inside an intelligence agency. If this gets out (especially if it comes out at the same time as Nadeer's connections to the watchdogs), Director Mace could easily spin things so it looks like the LMD project was something the Watchdogs were behind, rather than a semi-authorized SHIELD project that they later appropriated.

The Power of Love will break May out of her Lotus-Eater Machine.
The basis of the latest mirage is a world where the Bahrain incident had a happier ending, so May was never traumatized by Katya Belyakov's death. However, this means that May would still be married to Andrew, and she currently has developed feelings for Coulson through their time spent together. Unable to ignore these feelings, May recovers her real world memories, and they give her the strength to fight her way back to reality.

The fan fiction that Billy mentions to Daisy was written by Kamala Khan
Some of the fan fiction that Billy mentions to Daisy was written by Kamala Khan.

When Ghost Rider returns, he's going to end up finding and borrowing the Hydra Coupe
Because it would be awesome.

Agnes will eventually return in Aida's body.
Why else would Aida take her necklace? Also, you can see Aida questioning herself after she sees Agnes.

Agnes went willingly with Radcliffe for May's Sake as well as her own
She had already heard from Coulson that May had been kidnapped and replaced, and is being held against her will, the idea that she would join May inside this 'Framework' she could not only have a chance to live...but she might be able to meet May inside and help her escape by telling her that Coulson hasn't given up on her.

Shockley will pull a Heel–Face Turn.
While it seems unlikely now, maybe in later episodes he will accept the fact that the Inhumans are his people now and that the Watchdogs are wrong.

The Superior will end up becoming the MCU Red Guardian
He could acquire the Patriot formula from Mace and use it to get super strength.

The Superior will end up becoming the MCU version of MODOK
He's a Brain in a Jar (a "Mental Organism") and in The Return he said that his body was "Designed Only for Killing". A huge head with (comparatively) tiny arms and legs might be a bit too bizarre for the MCU, but really, have they always stuck to comic accuracy? No. Plus, imagine if the TV show out-Ultronned Avengers: Age Of Ultron with the whole Me's a Crowd thing? That would be cool.

Radcliffe is Fitz's real father.
  • Although we see Alistair Fitz in the Framework, he has almost nothing in common with his son and his mere presence drives alternate-Fitz to villainy. Holden is much more similar to Leopold than Alistair ever could be, and he seems to have had a father-son type relationship with Fitz. It's possible that Fitz's mother was cheating on Alistair due to his abuse, and Holden does mention knowing Fitz's father, which might mean he knew his mother as well... Plus, it would be perfectly in-character for a past Radcliffe to have sex with a married woman, due to his mousy tendencies and his heartbreak over Agnes.

    The Framework (note:a virtual reality, seen at the last episodes of season 4) 

Cal and Jiaying will appear in the Framework as simulations.
The Framework is designed to fix what it assumes to be the regrets of those inside. In a broader sense, Daisy's biggest regret might be her loss of a proper family, so the Framework will give one to her by creating her mother and father.

Radcliffe's consciousness will perform a Heel–Face Turn.
Aida's predictions will prove correct. After discovering what really happened, Radcliffe's consciousness in the Framework will have a My God, What Have I Done? moment and will help Team Coulson get out of it.
  • Confirmed to a point, Jemma confronts him about the Framework and while he's unable to help them escape he does let them know where the physical bodies of the missing agents are at.
  • All the way confirmed in "Farewell Cruel World" where he saves Jemma and stuns Fitz to get him through the portal. He later saves Yo-Yo in "Worlds End" and helps her and Mack escape the Framework.

The radically different world of the Framework is the result of the changes made to the lives of the people plugged in
The world created there is a logical extrapolation of multiple For Want Of A Nail situations. May wasn't traumatized by the results of the Bahrain mission, so she stayed in Ops, where Hydra was most heavily concentrated within SHIELD, and was eventually recruited by them. Coulson never joined SHIELD, so he never met the Avengers and became the uniting sacrifice that brought them together, so the Avengers ultimately failed to stop Insight from taking over. In addition, without years of experience dealing with weird people in SHIELD, Coulson never learned that weird people are people too, and so developed Fantastic Racism. As for Ward, in a world where Hydra won, none of the people who played a role in his fall from grace and death had any reason to seek it, so he survived.

Grant Ward is the "Coulson" for the Framework HYDRA
Given the For Want Of A Nail nature of the Framework, and the fact he's apparently dating Daisy, Grand Ward of the Framework will be a wildly different character than what we have seen before. He's the one who goes out and approaches the new Empowered Humans/Inhumans and recruits them similar to what Coulson did for the Avengers, he most likely recruited Daisy much like what we see in Season 1, but the romance stayed since there was no Fall of SHIELD.

Framework Simmons died of the Chitauri virus from Season 1.
Coulson presumably not having joined SHIELD resulted on no one finding out about her infection until it was too late; she found out on her own and this time, circumstances prevented Ward from saving her (maybe he had no reason to gain the team's trust by saving her if he was already in a position of power?).
  • She was killed at the SHIELD S&T Academy during Hydra's takeover.

Where Simmons actually ended up in the Framework
She's dead in the Framework so she had to go into someone when she logged in. Possible guesses?
  • The mystery woman with Fitz.
  • Grant Ward (to really put the "wild" in WMG).
  • She really DID log into her dead body and we will be treated to a scene of her digging herself out of the grave.
    • Confirmed- Abet the mass grave at the Academy rather than the one we are shown in "Self Control".
  • The Framework simply created a new body for her somewhere, because:
  • She never entered the Framework, because it knew she was dead in the simulation and kicked her back out.
  • Seems like she just inhabits her dead body, which gets fully restored somehow.
Aida is planning to kill all the captive SHIELD agents
She's already been told that there is no difference between a dead person uploaded to the Framework and a living person logged into the Framework, and used that as grounds to kill her creator and upload his dying mind into the Framework. Given that, sooner or later she's going to decide that there's no reason for her to keep living prisoners around. Daisy and Simmons are in a race against time before Aida decides that it will be easier to upload everyone to the Framework if she just kills people after uploading and reuses the upload terminals instead of making new ones.
  • She might want to, but she can't, because her programming doesn't allow her to kill except to protect SHIELD agents or the Framework. If she succeeds in becoming human, however, all bets are off.

Framework Simmons faked her own death
Presumably this is some part of Fitz's "better world" — he's a playboy billionaire, and Simmons is an international spy of some description.

Framework May is fighting Hydra from within
Aida needed to give her a world in which she was happy. For someone like May, what could be a better Valhalla than an unending secret war against an unambiguously evil foe?
  • May is fanatically loyal to HYDRA to make amends for what happened in Bahrain, which is STILL My Greatest Failure due to Katya killing hundreds in Cambridge. She does betray them once she sees Jeffrey sacrifice his life, though.

Grant Ward will actually be a Nice Guy in the Framework
All of the protagonists seem to have ended up with nastier personalities than in their real lives. By contrast, Grant Ward without his greatest regrets might have actually turned out to be a positive, kind or even heroic character, and maybe that's why Daisy's alternate self is in an apparently happy relationship with him instead of rejecting him due to his allegiance to HYDRA. Since Daisy just entered the Framework and has no memory of the events that led up to this alternate reality, it will likely lead to problems with their (virtual) relationship since Daisy will still remember him as a despicable HYDRA loyalist while his virtual self may well be anything but that. It could even lead into a bit of posthumous redemption for Ward if his virtual self helps ultimately save Coulson, May, Fitz, Simmons, Mack and Mace from the Framework.
  • Confirmed. He defected to SHIELD when he learned that "Skye" was a latent Inhuman.
Stephanie Malick is still alive in the Framework, and isn't happy about HYDRA's treatment of Inhumans.
  • So she forms a faction of HYDRA dedicated to upholding the Inhuman-worshipping cult her father once ran. She intends to return Hive to Earth but doesn't have the resources to obtain the monolith, and Gideon was possibly killed by HYDRA due to his pro-Inhuman beliefs, leading Stephanie to avenge his murder. A newspaper mentions that Whitehall and Malick are working together in this world, but Whitehall could have easily betrayed Gideon and had the propaganda machine cover it up.

Framework Mace will be Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s answer to Hydra Captain America
This new storyline comes on the heels of Marvel Comics' big Secret Empire story, which features a Hydra-controlled Cap launching his plans to dominate the world. Since there's really no chance for Chris Evans to ever show up on the show, the next best thing for the producers to replicate this is to have their ersatz Cap in Jeffrey Mace fulfill this role, serving as the now-superpowered face of Hydra.
  • Framework Mace is a vigilante fighting against Hydra. The exact opposite.

Grant Ward is actually with SHIELD not HYDRA
Think about it, May is with HYDRA and she HATES Ward with an unholy passion for his betrayals, and in the words of Coulson savors her grudges its possible that the removal of her greatest regret of Bahrain that the framework is working on her next regret...vengeance on Ward to protect those she loves. If she's now HYDRA logic would dictate that Ward would need to be SHIELD to fit in the betrayal angle
  • Confirmed, but not for those reasons.

Framework Jeffrey is the Cap fanboy in this universe.
  • His origin is that the resistance recruited him to be the Modern Cap and to be the poster boy for the resistance against HYDRA.

Lives of MCU characters in the Framework:

  • Cap is still frozen or was found by HYDRA and experimented on.
  • Tony Stark is funding the Resistance or died when taken captive by the Ten Rings or killed in Project Insight. Alternatively, he became a villain in this universe because he never had his life-altering experience in the desert, and now works with HYDRA.
  • Peter Parker is a student who tries to keep quiet about his hatred of HYDRA or is a vigilante against HYDRA, being a composite of Spider-Man 2099 in how he fought against Alchemax.
    • Also, Uncle Ben never died.
  • Thor's coronation in his movie went off without a hitch.
  • Black Widow and Hawkeye died in Budapest or on the run from HYDRA.
  • Bruce Banner is married with kids, just an average citizen.
  • Wanda and Pietro are still in Sokovia, never having lost their parents.
  • Scott Lang is in jail.
  • Hank Pym and possibly Hope are killed or imprisoned due to Hank's old connections to SHIELD.
  • Rhodey died in a military conflict.
    • Alternatively, both Rhodey and Stark died when the Ten Rings attacked Stark's convoy in Afganistan.
  • Sam Wilson suffers from PTSD and lives in a mental institution run by Hydra.
  • Bucky is still brainwashed by HYDRA.
  • Stephen Strange committed suicide after his accident left him disabled or was killed due to his talent in neuroscience being seen as a threat to HYDRA's brainwashing.
  • The Koenig siblings are part of the Resistance.
    • Confirmed as Billy died getting the Playground's location to the Resistance.
  • Peter Quill was never abducted and is a police sergeant in a small town, a hardass stickler for the rules.
    • Alternatively, he works for the Department of Parks and Recreation in Pawnee, Indiana.
    • Alternatively, he was abducted... and that's the end of the story for the Peter Quill Non-Player Character. The simulation simulates the whole world, which is something huge, but only the world; outer space is beyond the limits. Nobody on Earth knows about the Guardians of the Galaxy, the Ravagers, Thanos, Ronan, Nowhere, Ego or any of that stuff (and so Aida can't posibly know about either), so they can't be written about. Any attempt by a human avatar to leave the world and go to outer space would cause the framework to fall into a Blue Screen Of Death.
  • T'Challa never lost his father, Wakanda becomes even more isolationist due to Hydra being seen as a threat.
  • Matt Murdock became a priest.
    • Foggy Nelson runs a successful avocado cart.
    • Karen Page went to jail for murder.
  • Frank Castle died in combat.
  • Jessica Jones was committed to a psychiatric ward.
    • Killgrave was captured by Hydra and experimented on, in attempts to reverse-engineer his power.
  • Luke Cage is still in jail.
  • Danny Rand died in the Himalayas.

Bahrain will be the key to wake May up and join the rest of Team Coulson
  • May saving Kayta led to hundreds dead in Cambridge and HYDRA's rise to power, Coulson will confront May and tell her how in another world she DID kill Kayta and saved not only those on the op with her, but thusly the hundreds in Cambridge. He'll also tell her that in that world her greatest regret was not finding a way to save the girl, and now that she knows what would have come about if she did she can go back to the other world and be at peace that she in the end made the right choice for the world. Throw in declaration of love and cue the waterworks.

Mace is running the Resistance because of his regret
  • Director Mace's big regret was the fact that he was an accidental fake hero rather than a real one. So the Framework put him in a place where he could genuinely be a hero.

May will heal as a result of being in the Framework
  • Her biggest regret was killing Katya in Bahrain. Now that's "fixed", and her new biggest regret is *not* killing Katya in Bahrain... once she's removed from the Framework, she'll know that she made the right call in the end and her personality will gradually shift more towards what we saw from her pre-Bahrain years.
  • "The Last Days" show that May took a chance at motherhood to be a mother to Robin, suggesting she has healed.

The Avengers are dead inside the Framework
  • Stark likely died on the other side of the Tesseract Portal, being the only one capable of deflecting the nuke away. Barton was likely killed by Loki once his job was done. Romanoff and Falcon were assassinated by the Winter Soldier so they couldn't stop Insight from launching, but Rogers was able to stop the project at the cost of his own life, probably coinciding with the Cambridge Incident with Katya. Thor probably left Earth alone after the Aether events, while Banner lives in solitude on a remote island, or on another planet entirely.
    • It's unlikely Avengers even formed up or had powers to begin with in most cases. Bahrain op was in 2008 - same year as Iron Man. With the fascist organization rising up, Inhumans becoming a common knowledge much earlier and Coulson never being part of S.H.I.E.L.D. even before Hydra took over, it's safer to assume most of contemporary MCU events - especially ones that empowered people - didn't happen.
    • The seeds for The Battle of New York were started in Thor with a Loki encouraging the research into the Cube into opening portals. HYDRA was only interested in creating weapons with it and seemed to have no idea about it's transportation abilities, also if Thor was sent to Earth his best case is just wandering around homeless, if he was found by HYDRA he would have been killed outright at best, imprisoned and used as a lab rat at worst.

Agents of HYDRA: The Resistance
Ward has been a mole inside HYDRA for months after discovering his girlfriend was a latent inhuman. Within the Resistance he works for are the remnants of SHIELD, including their leader, Patriot (AKA Mace). Who else is working for SHIELD?
  • The survivors of Afterlife (given Lincoln's death it is likely that it was taken by force by HYDRA).
  • Calvin Johnson, who would be Patriot's creator in the Framework, and likely made the serum work correctly and permanently.
    • Mace is an actual Inhuman in the Framework
  • Nick Fury, if he managed to somehow survive the assassination attempt by HYDRA.

Coulson will be the one to drop the bombshell to the public that HYDRA was founded to worship Hive, an Inhuman Conquerer
  • What irony it would be if it led to a mass uprising that HYDRA couldn't quell, leading to a violent revolution and saving the Framework's future.

Simmons' efforts to restore Fitz's memories will involve a very long scarf
  • Simmons has long been established as being a Whovian, and Fitz is known as The Doctor inside the Framework. A reference is practically mandatory. Maybe a fob watch or a bowtie will do instead.

Some people in the Resistance might not want the Framework to end
Mace is a superpowered hero in the Framework, but in the real world he's just a figurehead leader whose job is to schmooze with politicians and the press while a man he sees as a schoolteacher in the Framework wields all the actual authority. In the Framework, Ward is an unsung hero working behind the scenes to free the world, but in the real world he's long dead, and the few people who remember him, including the woman he loves, all despise him as a traitor. There could easily be other people whose personal lives are better in the Framework even if the world as a whole is worse. Some of them might not want to give that up, even if that's the only way to defeat Madame Hydra.

Of course, that also gives some people the opportunity for great acts of heroism. The moment Madame Hydra loses, Ward dies, because his RL counterpart has been dead for over a year. But the Ward of the Framework could be willing to make a Heroic Sacrifice for Skye's sake, and possibly redeem his legacy a little in the memories of those who both knew him best and hated him most in the real world.

Hope is an Inhuman.
Maybe she knows somehow, but Mack doesn't. She sure was asking a lot about whether he considers Inhumans to be bad or not.

The Russian will be a Spanner in the Works
He'll still be very upset that Aida cut his head off and stuck him in a LMD to maintain the Framework.

Aida will receive a "The Reason You Suck" Speech centred around her hypocrisy.
As Madame Hydra inside the Framework, Aida became a real woman with independence and rights, but remade the world so it is under her supreme rule. Someone, most likely Daisy or Jemma, will call her out for having no qualms about taking away the freedom she wanted away from others, including brainwashing Fitz into her obedient slave. It's extremely unlikely that she will take this tirade to heart, but what's more is that she could prove the words true by snapping to "just do as she says" at her subordinates, possibly even Fitz, when they try to question her authority.

Thanos does not exist
Why would they include him in the simulation? Nobody on earth know about him. As for why the Chitauri attacked, it is simply because they are Always Chaotic Evil (which is the thing the people in the main universe must think, anyway).
  • That's a good point. While we as an audience are certainly privy to the existence of Thanos, the Avengers only know about the stones, not who is looking for them. As far as they are concerned Loki only attacked Earth of his own volition. The only ones who know of Thanos and his quest for the Infinity Gems are the Guardians of the Galaxy, and possibly Loki.

The Framework plus LMDs equals resurrections
The NPCs, so to speak, in the Framework are advanced enough to pass for humans. Plug them into an LMD, which can also pass for human, and suddenly the person is alive again. The writers will use this to bring Grant Ward back into the main cast. Also, Trip lives!

In the Framework, religion is abolished.
At least in America. Another way for public obedience is to prevent people from morally good people from lashing out on HYDRA by calling them "devils" or that they "work for the devil". And even mentioning God to a HYDRA agent would give them a bullet to the head.

Hope will be brought out of the simulation
There is NO WAY Mack is leaving her behind, and the simulation will probably be shut off at the end. To get Mack to come back, they may bring Hope along too.
  • Alternatively, They realize the possibility to bring people back, and they only have a finite amount of power/materials. (Aida for just herself needs the BLACK SEA) if Aida used some in a failed attempt at being human, that means all that is left is about enough to return a child. Like Hope.

Star Wars faded into oblivion
The original trilogy was made in the 1970s, well before the point of divergence. But, once being in charge, HYDRA would surely not like that film at all: the bad guys are the authoritarian government, and the heroes are a band of rebels. So, to the blacklist! The first 3 films are not aired in TV ever again (or available elsewhere), and of course no new Star Wars films or related media are made at all. In time, people simply forgot about those films, their characters and concepts. That's why Coulson compared the resistance with the Rebel Alliance, and Mace clearly did not got the reference.

Aida THINKS she's going to create herself a body but actually she'll be pulling back Eli Morrow
It's been spoiled in a few articles that the Season Finale will feature the return of Robbie/Ghost Rider and a 'Deadlier Enemy' what better way to bookend the season by ending it the way it began with Eli as the big bad? It's telling that the Project Looking Glass machine in the real world has parts that look like the portal Aida built as well as the Matter Creator that Eli helped build. Eli returns to wreak havoc ergo Ghost Rider will need to arrive to help the heroes.
  • It's hers, apparently.

Alternatively, AIDA was being manipulated by the Darkhold to make a body for Chthon.
The Darkhold seems to kind of focus on things like portals to other worlds and enhancing humans or creating bodies, all of which lead back to the base goal of Chthon getting a physical body on Earth. Sure, the book shows the reader what they want, but it also shows the reader what it wants. Eli was Chthon's first intended vessell, but he experienced a setback when Eli got pulled into hell (or whatever they're calling it). Robbie is returning to stop Chthon's second attempt; AIDA. There will be some tell-tale symptom of Chthon's influence, such as odd looking eyes or tainted veins or something, but AIDA will be defeated before Chthon can gain full control over her.

The season finale stinger will serve as a cliffhanger as the camera pans down into the water, resting on a cocoon. The cocoon will crack and fall apart, revealing Veejay. The camera will move closer and closer to his face as his eyes open, revealing the tell-tale visual cue for Chthon's influence.

Ophelia Sarkissian exists in the real world, but AIDA took her place in the Framework because it predicted she could become Director of HYDRA in the altered timeline.
  • In the real world, she could be a HYDRA assassin that disbanded along with the rest of the organization, and possibly be known by her other code name "Viper". She may also have died in the real world a long time ago, explaining why she hasn't shown up yet (and Simmons could reveal this to Fitz to help him out of his Heroic BSoD).

    Season 5 
This season will focus on the Marvel Cosmic Universe and build up to Infinity War
And if the fans are REALLY lucky we'll get lots of cool cosmic cameos such has the Nova Corps, Asgard, The Inhuman Royals and the Guardians of the Galaxy.
  • They are in the future, in a time the Infinity War presumably already took place, so this theory is probably jossed. Unless it's revealed later that the infinity war is what truly destroyed the Earth, and the team has to Set Right What Once Went Wrong, resulting in a new version of the infinity war; the version we will see in the next 2 Avengers movies.
  • Confirmed. The second half of the season was all about fighting General Talbot as he powered himself up to become a superhero capable of defeating Thanos, while driving himself slowly crazy to the point that, if he wasn't stopped, he'd have been the one who physically tore the Earth apart looking for more power.

Team Coulson was picked up by SWORD
After all, Marvel does have the rights to SWORD.
  • Coulson explicitly claims that SHIELD doesn't have any kind of space-related division in the first episode of Season 5. But then, SWORD *isn't* a part of SHIELD, so it may very well still exist.

Team Coulson was picked up by ARMOR
The rights to SWORD are up for debate, considering the debuted in Astonishing X-Men, but the Alternate Reality Monitoring and Operational Response agency made its first appearance in a Marvel Zombies book, the film/television rights of which should still be owned by Marvel Studios. What we assume is space could just be another dimension, the blue glow in the distance representing the Nexus of All Realities. The base itself could be the MCU version of The Hollow.

Beyond just the speculation of whether or not Marvel Studios owns the rights to SWORD, there are a couple other things that suggest the agents might have been taken in by ARMOR. Firstly, when Robbie describes where he was after falling through the "hellmouth", he discussed alternate dimensions and other worlds. He could have simply given a vague description of where he ended up, so perhaps the writers had him mention these alternate dimensions as a seed for a future plot thread. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, when the mysterious figure shows up in the diner and stops time, he says "the window closes in two minutes." He could just be referring to their "window of opportunity", but it could also refer to the gateway they opened.

The group that abducted the team are aliens
But which alien race are they? Possible candidates:
  • The Kree: They aren't serving the Kree government, but are a rogue faction who are interested in exploiting Daisy and Yoyo.
    • The Kree are confirmed to appear in the season, but no confirmation yet.
  • The Autocrons: They are interested in the threat humanity may pose if they were to try and invade Earth, so they abducted the team due to their accomplishments over great odds too test out how to defeat the kinds of humans who would rebel if they took over. This will allow for the introduction of the MCU Machine Man, who fought the Autocrons in the comics.
  • Contraxians: They want to keep the Contraxian women staying on Earth in the guise of humans to be kept safe, and are abducting those who they believe could expose them, such as spies. This will allow for the introduction of the concepts of the hero Jack of Hearts, if not a version of the character himself.
  • The Epsiloni: They have seen how SHIELD has fought against HYDRA and view them as an example of a threat to their fascist military dictatorship system. They want to test their mettle against SHIELD's top talent, as well as consume Inhuman life forces. This is considered the ultimate hunt for them and they'll be depicted as similar to the aliens of Film/Predators of the Predator franchise. The ship is the hunting ground.
  • The Skrulls: They'll be appearing in Captain Marvel, so it's a good idea to have the Skrulls appear in the show to link the series to the movie. Even better is that the Skrulls are shapeshifters; They can look human most of the time, even to manipulate the SHIELD team by posing as new human allies and enemies.
  • The Brood: Unless they're tied up with X-Men/Fox, there's a Xenomorph-esque creature in the promo that resembles a Brood.
    • The human Coulson encounters calls the creature a Vrellnexian, a more obscure species of monstrous aliens that first appeared in some Thor comics in the 70s.

The team was abducted by the Ravagers
It is a neat way to tie the show with the Guardians of the Galaxy, without bringing the GOTG cast to it. And, as shown in the second film, there are several ravager groups out there, Yondu was just one among many. It was also made clear that Earth is a known planet and within their reach, as they could get a MP3 player for Peter (who could return to Earth if he wanted to, he just doesn't).

The team was abducted to prepare things for a First Contact
  • The team are, alongside Jane Foster, the only humans who have been to an alien world and back. And, unlike Jane, they are way more used to deal with bizarre stuff, and have stronger ties to formal institutions. If there's someone ready to manage diplomatic relations with an alien race, it would be them. The aliens, on the other hand, should be aware that no matter how much sousveillance of earth they used, they should have some actual human on board, who is aware of the way humans do things and how would people react to things, in order to make sure that things end well.

Aida is not dead
  • She knew that Shield would do anything to stop her, so she planned ahead and replaced herself with a LMD body double, while she hides behind the scenes, planning on what to do next. She's too smart to let herself be defeated that easily. she'll return in this season, either plotting revenge, or she'll finally accept Fitz's and Simmons's relationship, and finally let Fitz go, pulling off a Heel–Face Turn for real!
    • Unlikely. That would mean that the Ghost Rider was fooled by a robot. No-No.
    • It's not really a matter of being fooled. Ghost Riders mission isn't about discerning between real or fake, it's about innocent vs guilty. as long as they have a soul. Which LMDs obviously have. just look at LMD May's actions! you think anyone would do those things with mere programing? You don't feel happiness without a soul. you don't cry without a soul. and you certainly don't love without a soul! My point is, as long as you have one, you can be judged by the Spirit of Vengeance!
    • Pretty much stated in the show that Ghost Rider was lured out/attracted to Aida specifically since her new body was made from Zero Matter/Darkforce, and given that she healed perfectly from Simmon's SMG burst no more than a minute before Coulson (hosting the Rider) grabbed her, and instantly teleported after the Rider emerged...two things an LMD cannot do and NO time for a swap. Once the Rider grabbed her he would have known INSTANTLY he was grabbing a robot not the Darkforce Construct he needs to destroy, yeah, nice thought, but highly unlikely.

We'll finally have an Avenger show up on the show in Season 5
  • It just so happens that Season 5 will be still on the air by the time Avengers: Infinity War hits theatres, so what better way to celebrate the culmination of the MCU as a whole by having an Avenger appear on the first television series based on it? This is, of course, depending on whether or not the whole divide between Marvel Studios & Marvel Television has been resolved.

Coulson and his team were grabbed by an agency that was created as a replacement for SHIELD
Whether or nor it is SWORD that Coulson is working at, he and his team were recruited for a successor organization because the SHIELD name simply has too much baggage regardless of efforts at damage control. Said organization splits its focus between earthborn concerns and extraterrestrial threats, with Coulson's team being tasked with that aspect of missions.

Coulson and his team will be cleared of all accusations by whoever abducted them
Between the Anton LMD being left in pieces on site at Talbot's attempted assassination and awareness of the Daisy LM Ds it won't be hard for the governments to figure out what's going on and the figure that got Coulson's team will be a big part of pushing for that. They will do this in order to convince Coulson to sign up with them and for bonus points will help in the manhunt for the Russian.

Whatever happens in Inhumans will change how Inhumans are dealt with for the better
If Coulson and his team are stuck dealing with legal proceeding for a while than by the time they're done they will find out that what's for all intents and purposes is a new nation bringing pressure to bear to protect their own and get the Russian hunted down for what he's done against Inhumans.
  • Public reactions to Inhumans hasn't beeen a focus in Season 5.

Possible references to the greater universe that could be made

The team's abduction has something to do with the Inhumans on the moon.
  • The team has begun to have a deep association with the Earth Inhumans by now, and the moon Inhumans might have noticed. Plus, Season 5 comes out just after the 2017 Inhumans show does.

A team member, possibly Daisy, will encounter the "ghosts" of deceased show characters.
  • Although it's unlikely they'd be ressurected, the supernatural happenings of Season 4 make it possible for Daisy or another team member to visit some sort of astral world where the specters of the past haunt them. This would allow Daisy to say a proper goodbye to Trip, Lincoln and even Ward, considering the Framework version of him proves there was some good in him all along. Robert Gonzales and Victoria Hand could also appear, maybe with Eric Koenig thrown in for good measure, and Daisy could even get a chance to meet her mother as she was before Whitehall's torture.

Season 5 will only have 11 episodes.
To make room for the Inhumans show, Season 05 will only have 11 episodes.
  • Season 5 was a full season.

Season 5 will be the show's last season and will end with Daisy Johnson as Director of SHIELD.
SHIELD will be re-legitimized again, like what Jeffrey Mace tried to do but failed because of the LMD/Framework fiasco. Lincoln will be The Lost Lenore to a more hardened Daisy, and she might even sport her hairstyle from the comics.
  • Season 5 is not the last season of the show.

Graviton will appear at last.
  • Because we've been sitting on that Gravitonium since Season 1. And Ian Quinn can finally get his comeuppance, because we haven't even seen the guy since before the Inhumans arc and he had the Gravitonium last.
    • Confirmed- Ian's fate has been revealed as being consumed by Hall from within the Gravitonium for revenge and that both Hall and Quinn are still 'alive' within the Gravitonium.
  • Confirmed, but it's not Hall who becomes Graviton, but Talbot.

Phil and Melinda will finally hook up.
Phil and Melinda will finally hook up. Because we've been dying for that for-freaking-ever. (And now they have.)

Anton will build a Ward LMD drone
Anton will build a Ward LMD drone. The guy gotta return every season.

The team weren't "picked up" by a different government agency or abducted by aliens
The people at the end of the last season were time travelers, who are placing them in an alternate timeline where SHIELD is a space-based organization, with Fake Memories of having always worked for this Space SHIELD. After getting back to the proper timeline, Coulson will be inspired to help create SWORD in the MCU, since it might be kind of an Ass Pull to say SWORD that already exists in the MCU without any of the characters, in this show or any other MCU property, even noticing an organization based in spaceships flying around the Earth and never mention it (yes, there's a big disconnect between the show and the movies, and even the other shows, but...unless SWORD was invisible all this time, including to the US government officials we've seen, somebody would feel the need to mention the thing).

Alternatively, they were sent to the future
The recently released first seventeen minutes of the first episode has a character mentioning he has been studying them (as in the SHIELD team) for years. This includes Elena, who has only been on the team for about a year and a half. The character also says "your history", however, the Closed Caption on YouTube has it as "you're history". Combining that to the previews implying that the other people that are wherever the team is have been waiting for Coulson for a while, they could be in the future.
  • Confirmed.

Fitz will recruit Hunter to help him in his search for the team
The absence of Bobbi will be Hand Waved by having Hunter say that they split up for their own good and that she's living somewhere remote to avoid detection and capture.
  • Confirmed. Fitz is able to get a message through to Hunter, who busts him out of imprisonment. And while Hunter and Bobbi are still on good terms with each other, they are at the moment not working together.

It was not Daisy who destroyed Earth it was Thanos
The Avengers lost the Infinity War or even won it though at the cost to Earth forcing S.H.I.E.L.D. to figure out a way to make sure that the Avengers succeed in defeating Thanos AND saving Earth.
  • Alternatively it was Daisy who destroyed the Earth but did so while taking down Thanos.

The Guardians of the Galaxy will appear
However considering this season takes place in the future it won't be the team from the films but their successors.

Coulson will get his hands on Cap's shield
With the characters in the future and the Avengers long dead (likely including Thor given that he has not freed humanity from the Kree) this is a great opportunity to bring in things that they never could have done before like Captain America's Vibrainium shield.

Dove Cameron's character is related to Coulson
Either as his illegitimate daughter he never knew about in the present or a direct descendant of his in the future.
  • It's been revealed that she's the daughter of General Hale.

It wasn't Daisy that destroyed Earth, it was the Kree
Think about it, of the races that know of Earth and if the destruction of the planet was post Infinity War, we should have Xandar, and Asgard (what's left of them that is) with connections to the planet. But it's the KREE who are not the nicest species around who come in and 'save the day' for Humanity? And showing up soon enough to make a difference? The fact they are systematically destroying all historical records adds to this, they aren't trying to give Humanity a fresh start...they are destroying the evidence.

Flint will undergo Terrigenesis and become inhuman
It might be a forgone conclusion considering his comic counterpart. But with the revelation that on the 18th birthday that humans are exposed to Terrigan. It makes sense that Flint will become inhuman, also he could end up under mentorship with Daisy as the Kree will keep trying to find out his abilities but run into a brick wall, because Flint’s ability is Earth Manipulation and there is distinct lack of Earth on a space station.
  • Confirmed in "Fun and Games" - the part about Flint being Inhuman, at least. He discovers his power fairly quickly.

The station, and its overlords, exist in a timeline where the Avengers lost Operation: Galactic Storm.
Or one where the Infinity War against Thanos went very, very badly. Because the shot of what's left of the Earth, from the trawler, looks a whole lot like that shot of the Earth shattering in the famous What If issue 2-parter. That explains why the Kree have swept in and enslaved what was left of humanity, as well, with their expansionist Empire.
  • We are given a who did it, we just need the why.

The team are stuck in another simulation.
Everything about this two-parter seems suspect, between the Man in Black to Fitz's absence. Firstly, the Man in Black seen at the end of "World's End" kidnapping the team is given far too much screentime to be mere coincidence; including shots of him swimming, with barely any expression on his face; shots of him showering, including him removing his skin to reveal a bipedal alien of unknown species; and a shot of his fridge, stocked to the brim with Coconut Water. Secondly, Mr Coconut kidnaps everyone except Fitz, claiming he isn't on the list. Third, as we discover in the second half of the episode, is the fact that a monolith exists that can throw people into the future.

So why does this seem suspect? Firstly there is Virgil, the self-proclaimed Greeting Party who meets up with the team, sans Daisy. He gives Coulson info on the ship, including the hint that they are there to save humanity and he knows everything about them. However, he gets offed by a Roach, a creature he referred to as a 'glitch in the plan'. Roach, Glitch, Bug? As in bug in the system, or glitch in the software? Second is the exclusion of Fitz, who was one of the architects of the Framework. He would have known instantly that something was up, and could break the team out of their confinement. Instead, he is left on his own, and in the final scenes to the first part, a message from Fitz, Working on it... is seen on a postcard. He could have hacked the software to deliver a message the programmers wouldn't see.

Next is the issue with time travel in the show. Why would a being like Mr Coconut send them to the future? For that matter, how could he have known that they would end up there, and that they would be the 'saviors of humanity'? There is also the fact that the supposed 'cause' of the destruction of Earth being Quake stops applying once you remove her from the present time. Since she isn't there to cause the quake, the Earth should be fine, unless they make it back to the present to cause said future in the first place. Also, the only way Coconut would know what is on the other side of the monolith is if someone had come back through, but because it didn't have a fixed exit point there is no known way for that information to return to the present via the monolith. In other words, there is a situation where a being with no motive throws people into a time slip into the future, where they just so happen to be the exact people needed to help, all without giving them any information on what they actually need to do.

Lastly is the timing of the abduction. Coconut uses a device to freeze the team in place, presumably to prevent them from resisting, when in actuality it is to get them to their destination without them seeing where it is. However, the time he gives for his team until the effect wear off (two minutes) seems far too short for the travel from the diner to the monolith base. The loading/ unloading process alone would eat up most of that time. Also, the team gasps for breath after being unfrozen, as if all vital functions had been suspended, including brain activity and breathing. They went from the diner to the monolith in a split second from their perspective, since none of them remember it. Or maybe none of them remember because they were plugged in to a server, all came online at the same time, and then thrown into the scenario given to them - something just plausible enough not to arouse suspicion unlike the last version of the Framework.

Oh, and the title of the Episode, Orientation? Another way of saying 'showing the ropes', 'guided tour', 'welcoming ceremony', Tutorial.

  • It's an interesting simulation inside a simulation for Daisy.
  • Added evidence: Coulson switched to a basic prosthetic before going to the diner. After the Monolith, Coulson has two working hands.
    • How is that necessarily "evidence"? Even Coulson's early prosthetics could operate physically, even if he had trouble doing up his ties. It could just as easily be a Plot Device for two purposes: firstly to ensure that Coulson is deprived of all his cool technological abilities, and secondly to justify why his prosthetic hand doesn't run out of battery power over the course of however many episodes the team is stuck in space.

Mack will die in this season, or at least be teased to die
He has declared that he will retire once they returned, which is probably not the wisest idea to say in a tight situation like this. The trope Black Dude Dies First may or may not be played straight.

Daisy is going to become a mom
Its been shown that the Kree make humans artificially, so to increase the chances of more Inhumans. They also took Daisy's blood, since she has value to them. Why not use it to make more "Quakes"? And Coulson asks if she being used for breeding, making possible foreshadowing.

This might end up with a future baby. I don’t know.

Daisy's nightmare in "Absolution" will come true.
We were led to believe she was dreaming up what Hive might do to the Earth if he won. They're actually trapped on the surface of the destroyed future Earth in the containment module, which they got out of Zephyr One thanks to Fitz and Hunter leaving it hidden in a floor in the Lighthouse. Coulson has to take a moment to remind Daisy that it is, in fact, Earth that they're trapped on since Daisy is having trouble accepting the idea that it's their Earth—especially with everyone claiming she somehow did it. And for reasons the show will provide context for, they think at that moment they're the only ones left.note 

Flint's Inhuman power will be used to "reassemble" the Earth.
Since it is a matter of historical record that the Earth was split, whether by Quake or some other agent, Flint's power, the ability to (re)assemble rock into a set form will be used to fix the Earth.
  • Confirmed, but the team doesn't stay in in the future long enough to witness it.

General Hale is working with the Watchdogs
General Hale is working with the Watchdogs.

Deeks is a descendant of Bobbi/Hunter
He's already mentioned he was one of the last humans made "The Old Fashioned Way" and noted that both his parents were True Believers in the SHIELD Prophesy with his mother being killed and his dad exiled yet still alive on the what we now know is the Zephyr One with Robin. Last check she was in the care of Bobbi/Hunter, also given his access and rebuilding of the Framework. He's most likely descended from a SHIELD agent.
  • He's FitzSimmons' grandson.
    • Bobbi and Hunter could still be his paternal grandparents.

The Extinction Level Event was caused by Daisy trying to stop an invading entity with her powers.
In the Bad Future, Daisy quakes the world apart, but it is unclear as to why she would do something like that. The only reason she would be that unstoppable is if she had no other choice but to use her powers at maximum to defeat a foe that was close to either killing the entire world, or was going to destroy it anyway.Given this, it is then possible that the Earth is saved by Daisy intentionally not using her powers, but instead doing something else to incapacitate the enemy. Which paves the way for Thanos in Infinity War...

Coulson is dying because of the deal he made with the Ghost Rider last season.
Robbie said the deal would have consequences and The Reveal of what that deal entitled is going to be revealed this season.
  • Confirmed. Episode 12 (aka Episode 100) is titled "The Real Deal", and explicitly mentions that Coulson's deal with the Rider will be addressed.

Coulson will avert his death by becoming Graviton
Previews beyond the 100th episode indicate that the team goes in search of Gravitonium — presumably with Dr. Franklin Hall still alive inside — in order to avert the destruction of the world. But if Hall is still alive, and has suffered Sanity Slippage, gaining control would understandably be difficult. So since Coulson knows that he is slowly dying, he might instigate a battle between himself (the Good Counterpart mentor figure) versus Hall (the Evil Counterpart mentor figure) and win, taking control over the Gravitonium, and since Coulson would no longer be biologically human, his seemingly mortal wound would no longer be an issue. Plus, the Gravitonium would now be under the control of someone far more benevolent and mentally stable, and Coulson could finally gain superpowers after so many years of looking up to the people who already do.
  • That could be why Elena told her past self that they need to let Coulson die. They take down Hale and take possession of the infusion chamber, all loaded with Gravitonium and ready to go. They're planning to destroy/dismantle it, but Coulson collapses, his time has come, he's minutes from death when someone gets the idea to use the chamber to save him. It works, but he soon starts to lose control, either from the minds inside the Gravitonium fighting for control or he just can't handle the godlike power over all gravity. The last video of Daisy right before the Earth shattered was her refusing to leave for the Lighthouse with everyone else. She goes to make one last attempt to talk down Coulson, but fails, and she is unable to otherwise stop him from setting off the chain reaction that shatters the earth.
  • Talbot becomes Graviton.
    • Coulson might battle Talbot for control instead.

Daisy will be the cause of the destruction of the Earth
...or rather, her fear of being the cause will act as a kind of self-fulfilling prophecy. The new rift to a fear diminution existing below the surface of the planet, that can manifest a person's worst fears into physical form, could easily grow and expand enough that it could quake the planet apart. Other people also believing that Daisy cold be responsible wold only feed the fear more.

It wasn't Daisy that destroyed the Earth. It was Graviton.

So far Season 5 has been doing a lot of teasing for the return of Dr. Franklin Hall and his transformation into Graviton.

  • The gravity storms that are plaguing the post-apocalyptic Earth remnant. If Daisy's powers were used to crack the Earth apart then what caused these gravity storms given that her Quake powers are based in sonic vibrations rather than gravity?
  • The return of Gravitonium. The season has reintroduced Gravitonium as Applied Phlebotinum that's needed to further the plot. Also...
  • Ian Quinn's Gravitonium, in which Franklin Hall is trapped in, is now in the hands of General Hale, someone who is currently building a team of powerful individuals (Ruby, Creel, Strucker Jr., etc), and she's had it for some time now meaning that its possible she's found out about Hall being trapped in it and has found a way to free him.
  • Hale has been indirectly responsible for the creation of the spacetime rift which according to Fitz is the probable cause for Earth's destruction and that gravity can influence it to repair it (and by that logic make it worse).
  • If Hall has his Graviton powers as a result of long-term exposure to Gravitonium and has also undergone a Sanity Slippage as a result of spending years trapped in an And I Must Scream scenario, isn't it possible that he might just use his powers to end the world? With Daisy being Mis-blamed because she was there when he did it and tried to stop him and her powers can in theory destroy the Earth as well.
  • Graviton has been confirmed for the show, only it's not Hall, but Talbot.

Creel is only playing along with Hale and hasn't done a Face–Heel Turn against SHIELD
Creel claims that he saw the video and believes that Daisy did shoot Talbot. However Creel is an experienced boxer/fighter and one thing a boxer has to be good at is reading people and figuring out how they move and what they are going to pull next given his following role as Talbot's bodyguard chances are good that he'd spot things before others. The LMD Daisy just stalked into the room and shot Talbot, she didn't move or act like the real Daisy would, most people would take it at face value but it's possible Creel DID notice something 'off' about Daisy. Once he met the LMD Superior...and realized that it WAS possible to have a perfect physical replica robot...and Talbot may have TOLD him about the LM Ds found in the Playground. Well he's not stupid, but rather than confront Hale he played along...might even be encouraging the whole "Revenge for Talbot" angle to get close to SHIELD and help them out later...
  • Confirmed. Creel does turn on Hale and Hydra. It just isn't for the above-mentioned reasons. It takes Coulson convincing him of Hale having Talbot tortured while in captivity for Creel to help against Hydra. It's also established that he still sorta believes that Daisy shot Talbot, despite evidence to the contrary.

Ways SHIELD can save the future
With Episode 15 revealing that Whitehall's project was known as Destroyer Of Worlds, it is probable that Coulson will attempt to destroy the project to prevent the Bad Future. On the other hand, Daisy may just walk right into Hale's hands and doom the world. Elena hopes that if she dies the future breaks down because of a paradox, hence why she believes herself to be invincible, as she later convinces Simmons. Herego:
  • Coulson destroys the machine, preventing the HYDRA program from being completed.
  • Either Elena or Simmons perform a Heroic Sacrifice by letting themselves be killed so as to cause a paradox.note 

Coulson gets sucked into the Gravitonium.
We know that the Gravitonium's been sucking people into it (per S 5 E 16), with people who have a grudge against Coulson Dr. Hall and Quinn being those currently trapped inside the substance being sucked into it. It's not out of the realm that Phil himself ends up with this fate. This would explain why Future Yo-Yo is insistent that Coulson has to die in order to save the world.

Yo-Yo was wrong at the end of All Roads Lead...
She didn't save the world, she just started the countdown to destruction.

Everyone will continue to make poor choices to prevent catastrophe
First Fitztortured Daisy in order to get her powers back as he believed it was needed to control the Gravitonium needed to close the rift, a decision that is highly flawed (ignoring that he could have found other ways to get her powers back or even just replicate them, but in doing so he has potentially set Daisy on the course that will turn her into the Destroyer of Worlds). Then, Yo-Yo kills Ruby to stop her becoming the Destroyer, something that drives Hale to the Despair Event Horizon and makes her side with the Confederacy, likely bringing about the Kree's occupation of what's left of humanity, if not destroy the earth first.Also, future Yo-Yo told her past self that its their attempts to save Coulson that will doom them, not to mention several points in the future where I Did What I Had to Do rationale was used to excuse horrible actions (Deke selling Daisy to the Kree, Yo-Yo framing Grill's enforcer to save everyone else). Essentially, the theme of the season seems to be that this line of thinking, that its OK to commit horrible acts so long as you're 'saving the day', even when it could potentially doom the future, is short-sighted and cruel, never mind selfish. So, its likely that we'll see more characters (probably May and Jemma, as they're the ones shown agreeing with Fitz's actions) do similar things to prevent the terrible future, only to end up being the things that enable it (in fact its likely May who'll do something to save Coulson to stop it).

Ruby will return
Because killing a perfectly good Evil Counterpart to Daisy is really a major They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character, and her powers are linked to Graviton, who's ability to always comes back from the dead in the comics is actually a plot point of his character, its unlikely that she'll stay dead. Most likely, due to the time-travel plot of the season, and the fact this event is apparently one of the catalysts for causing the Bad Future, they'll have to undo it in the end to stop the bad future unfolding. Alternatively, linking it with the attempts to save Coulson, the team might acquire Kree blood from the Confederacy's attack and attempt to use it for Coulson, only for Hale to instead hyjack it to revive her daughter, too.
  • Hale is killed by Graviton in "The One Who Will Save Us All".

Coulson will get booted into the Quantum Realm instead of dying
Instead of killing him off yet again, Coulson might get booted into the Quantum Realm through some sort of space-time manipulations — certainly a possibility when dealing with gravity-warping Enhanced individuals — and end up in The '90s, which could be the mechanism by which he appears in Captain Marvel (and he wouldn't need makeup or digital de-aging as a result). As a bonus, seeing as said film involves a conflict between the Kree and the Skrulls, he would once again have access to the sort of substances that enabled his return from death in the first place.

Who's going to die from the ending of Avengers: Infinity War?
Anyone who has watched Infinity War by now knows that The Bad Guy Wins and Thanos executes his famed Badass Fingersnap, culling half of the sentient beings in the universe into ash. So if the Earth is indeed saved from destruction, who is going to fall victim when it occurs? Being a random process, it could quite literally be anyone:
  • Phil Coulson, as an Ass Pull especially when the season has talked up his old mortal injury as the reason for his impending doom.
  • Melinda May, quite possibly in tandem with Coulson's supposedly inevitable passing.
  • Either Fitz or Simmons, because the universe seems to like making them suffer.
  • Either Mack or Yo-Yo, just for the Rule of Drama, Vasquez Always Dies, or Big Guy Fatality Syndrome.
  • Daisy, to throw the future of S.H.I.E.L.D. into doubt (and maybe as offscreen irony for claiming that the film side of the MCU doesn't care about the television series).
  • Deke, because people who get involved with Daisy (e.g. Lincoln) tend to die, and he's already a Fish out of Temporal Water.
  • Agent Davis, Agent Piper, or both.
  • Several of the members of The Confederacy, ending the alien threat to Earth before it can come to fruition.
  • General Talbot, A.K.A. Graviton, because it might be the only way to successfully take him down.
  • Alternatively, since the film is taking place at the same time as the last four episodes, Season 5 will conclude right before the Badass Fingersnap. That way, if Season 5 ends up being the last, fans can have a Bittersweet Ending and create their own head-canons for who survives the finger snap, and if the show gets renewed for another season, then it can deal with the aftermath of Thanos' culling.

Alternatively, all the Infinity War references are red herrings, and none of Coulson's team will die from Thanos' Badass Fingersnap.
The Season 5 finale was described by the showrunner as "satisfying". We're not sure that "members of Team Coulson disintegrating after a possible victory" can fit that description. Therefore, the episode will instead end on a more self-contained note.
  • Confirmed.

Any Infinity War-related cliffhangers will be resolved in Avengers: Endgame.
With news of Season 6 coming in the summer after Avengers: Endgame, one ambitious way to end the season is to have it end with half of the SHIELD crew disintegrating, then have the resolution be done in the form of a couple of characters appearing in Endgame. The film itself would then show the disappeared SHIELD agents among the many brought back into existence, with Season 6 then subsequently dealing with the fallout.

Someone will Take a Third Option with regards to the Centipede Serum
The various members of the team talk up how they could save Coulson by adding Jiaying's DNA to the Serum, or they could take down Talbot/Graviton by infusing it with the Odium, but cannot do both as there is only one dose left of the Serum itself. What's stopping them from doing both?

The Odium can grant someone superhuman abilities at the same time as the Centipede Serum and Jiaying's Healing Factor could keep them in one piece by holding off the fatal mind-decaying and heart-exploding effects of the Odium. Knowing that he has little time left by any other method, Coulson might take the combined serum to both keep him alive and receive the strength to stop Graviton from destroying the world.

The Epilogue To The Season 5 Finale Takes Place After Avengers: Endgame
Which is to say that nobody gets dusted because the Snappening will never have happened in this timeline. In the fourth Avengers movie, the Avengers will use time-travel to stop Thanos from killing everyone, meaning that the reason none of the team died before Coulson's retirement is because history was already corrected. Seems like an easy enough way to Hand Wave things with the start of Season 6 and use that as an opportunity to explore the vastly different post-Avengers:Endgame MCU instead of having to spend time on a problem that the movies will already have solved. Plus, with the show returning in Summer 2019, they can skip having to deal with the massive Cliffhanger that Avengers: Infinity War set up and just pick up where they left off.

The timeline changed because of Doctor Strange's temporal pick'n'choose
In using the Time Stone, Doctor Strange was examining potential futures for any that lacked the myriad failure states that would have ended everything. One of the biggest of those would have been the decimation of Earth by Graviton (preventing the entire restoration scenario), so by manipulating the length of the encounter on Titan, he was able to allow Thanos's arrival to shift the probabilities of events on earth in just the right way - changing Coulson's thinking in the moments ahead of Daisy's move against Graviton. Strange needn't even be aware of why that particular scenario works when millions others don't, just that it creates the opening.

The Earth Destroyed timeline is destined to become MCU's equivalent of Marvel 2099 after its Earth is repaired.
Honestly, even after they manage to put the world back together and start rebuilding societies on the surface, Earth's probably still going to be pretty screwed up for a while after it spent so long broken and enslaved by the Kree. Enough that it could still present a Bad Future not all that different from the one depicted in the comic run, which also came about due to a big world-wrecking cataclysm.

    Season 6 

The season will be set in a location that can allow the show to ignore the ending of Infinity War
and do their own thingBe it being sent to an alternate reality, another dimension, or even the distant future after the remaining movie characters reverse Thanos's wiping out of half of the universe's life, the season will instead find a way to put Team Coulson in a new environment that will allow them to ultimately save the day in a way and give them all shining moments before the show likely ends. Then, some of the characters may be allowed to be transplanted into the movie fold of the MCU, thus throwing fans of the a bone in more ways than one, even if said roles are minor.

The season will fully introduce The Multiverse to the MCU.
Because that's just about the only major concept from the Marvel Universe that hasn't appeared as of Season 5 (here meaning a legit Alternate Universe, not like the Framework).

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been set in the timeline where Thanos travels into the Avengers: Endgame timeline and vanishes forever from 2014.
Given the events of Episode 1, it seems obvious that this is what the producers have done, to separate the MCU movies from the TV shows.
  • How about the fact that the events of Infinity War were taking place during the last part of last season.
    • They never actually showed Thanos or the fight in Wakanda, they only mentioned that Thanos was invading off-screen. It could be that in the timeline Thanos abandoned, the Confederacy took advantage of his absence to use his name as part of a protection racket. They make it look like Thanos is invading a planet and offer protection in exchange for everything of value that world has to offer.
    • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. could be set in the timeline where Thor goes for the head in Wakanda and prevents the snap in the first place.

While they aren't being very nice about it, Sarge's team is trying to save worlds, not destroy them.
Although they really shouldn't have left the body around for somebody to tamper with, the bat parasite didn't become a threat until they pulled out the dagger that seemed to be subduing it, which Elena clued into to subdue it again. Sarge's team isn't creating the bats, but containing them. The parasites are said to be highly explosive, and Keller mentioned that the zombified host seemed to be heading to a ley-line nexus, where a large explosion caused by several such hosts could potentially be world-ending. This reframes Tinker's last words not as a threat of whats to come, but a warning.
  • Confirmed, but Sarge begins to slip in his "mission" as his memories as Pachakutiq begin to resurface.

There are multiple timelines that all diverge at the point that the Agents of Shield return to the past. Every time the main characters use the monolith to travel in time, they switch to a different one.
In one timeline, the agents are brought to the future and killed. Had they survived, they would have returned to the timeline the MCU is in, but since they didn't, no one rescued Talbot and he probably died, or even if he did become Graviton, he couldn't absorb Daisy's power and destroy the earth. The Fitz in the mcu is woken by Enoch in the future, but the earth is safe and no one has brought a version of the team to the future for them to meet up with.

In one timeline, earth is destroyed, which means Talbot unintentionally achieves his goal, and Thanos is killed, as are everyone we know on earth except the agents of shield that we know survive. This was one of the 14,000,605 futures that Strange saw, but he didn't consider it one where they win because earth is destroyed. However, he's able to tell the others on Titan what happened and he, Tony and Peter join the guardians. In the future, the Agents of SHIELD from the mcu are brought into the timeline, where the first half of season 5 happens.

They then return to a third timeline, where the second half of season 5 happens, and some indeterminate period of time after the finale, the snap happens. However, something that one of the Agents of SHIELD does in the post snap universe causes a butterfly effect that leads to Pepper dying before Morgan or any other child can be born. The Avengers decide that instead of simply undoing the snap, they will use the gauntlet to undo the past 5 years, up until the point just before Thanos Snaps, and kills 2018 Thanos. Everyone but the characters who are with Bruce return to the position they were in 5 years ago with no memory of the 5 years, including the Agents of SHIELD. However, Strange is easily able to figure out what happened because he saw this as one of the 14,000,605 futures. (He lied about there only being one future where they win because he knew that they would only win if he did.) 2014 Nebula brings 2014 Thanos to the compound in 2018, Strange brings the army through the portal, and the battle of earth goes pretty much the same way it did in the mcu. But since the Agents of SHIELD don't remember the snap or 5 year time skip, this doesn't have a big enough impact on them that they're still talking about it 5 years later.

Yeah, I know there are holes in this theory, the biggest being Deke, but it's the best explanation I could think of.

    Season 7 

The sample of the White Monolith that Jemma's team took before evacuating the temple is how Zephyr One jumped through time.
One agent is seen drilling a piece off of the White Monolith, but it doesn't get explained. This was done to load the sample into a compartment of the upgraded jump drive offscreen while Simmons was leading the main agents on board. Showing us this as they were doing it, of course, would've easily given away the ending twist before they could properly reveal it.
  • Confirmed. The agents assisting Jemma in Season 6's last episode turned out to be Jemma, Fitz, Sousa and Yo-Yo.

The Black Monolith is the same one we had been seeing throughout the second and third seasons and will be sent back to the time of the Kree experiments as a result of time travel shenanigans.
Given the above theory that a piece of the White Monolith was used to send Zephyr One back in time, it's entirely possible the other two monoliths could've survived the destruction of the temple. Deke is living proof that if one piece of the White Monolith is activated, the rest of it is. And Z-1 made the jump just before the missiles reached the temple to blow it up, while a majority of the White Monolith was placed directly between the other two.

Since the Gray Monolith was never seen anywhere except the fifth and sixth season, it would likely get destroyed for good in upcoming events. But the Black Monolith could end up going back even further in time by the end of the season, where it'll be found the the Kree who will figure out its purpose and ultimately banish Hive with it.

Season 7 won't just hop to Depression-era New York City
The season has already been announced as the final season of the series, and the writers have shown a fondness for tying up loose plot ends. With the time-travelling capabilities added into Zephyr One, there's no way that capability is only going to get used once. We could easily see a time-era-hopping plotline for the final season, which would serve as a neat parallel to Avengers: Endgame (especially now that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. wouldn't be spoiling the movie's plot points).
  • Confirmed. So far, we've visited 20's-era New York, 50's-era Roswell, two different points of the 70's, and we just got dropped off in the early 80's.

Flint is meant to set up a family dynamic and possible retirement for Mack and Yo-Yo
With season 7 meant to be the final season, the copy of Flint that was created by the Monoliths at the end of season 6 will most likely be sticking around, as he didn’t simply dissolve at any point like the typical Fear Dimension illusions and was last known to be flying away on a Quinjet with Piper. Given that season 7 seems to hinge on time-travel, it’s entirely possible that Mack and Yo-yo will return to the present at the end of the season and more-or-less adopt Flint as their son, leading them to continue on with S.H.I.E.L.D. or retire and live as a family with Flint, either way getting their happy ending. Helped by season 6 and season 7 deliberately being written as a two-part story similarly to Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, allowing both seasons to respectively set up and pay off multi-season arcs for one another.

Where Season 7 will be set within the MCU timeline...
  • Back in the main timeline somewhere during the Avengers: Endgame Time Skip, explaining the post-Infinity War fates of certain characters that were previously undisclosed.
  • Sometime after Spider-Man: Far From Home, maybe dealing with Spidey's identity being exposed to the world

The Loa will be the final villain of this series

Season 6 and 7 takes place in the timeline when Thanos and Nebula dissapeared
When they came back to the present during Season 5, they ended up in a timeline where the events of Infinity War never happened. They will probably go back to the main timeline when the snap happened, addressing the events of Endgame, also handwaving the events of the other MCU shows that do not acknowledge the Snap as an alternate timeline.

Part of Season 7 will serve as a Fully Absorbed Finale for Agent Carter.
The trailer for the third episode shows that Daniel Sousa will be appearing prominently in this episode. That makes it entirely possible that other characters from the Agent Carter series could show up while S.H.I.E.L.D. is in that time period, which could likely result in loose ends left by the show's cancellation being tied up.

The Grand Finale will finally reveal The Multiverse.
There would be an appearance by Uatu the Watcher, who would reveal that all the other Marvel Television shows took place in Alternate Timelines created as a result of damage to the main MCU timeline caused by the team's constant time-traveling.

Sousa's Fate
It is hinted in a trailer to "Out Of The Past" that Sousa will be murdered by HYDRA as he is one of the few that come close to revealing HYDRA's inflitration of SHIELD. Since it's been the team's mission to preserve the timeline so that SHIELD does not get erased, Coulson will likely decide to save him by faking his death and bringing him along with them.
  • Confirmed.

Rick Stoner is replaced by a Chronicom.
In the promo for "A Trout in the Milk", when the team are discussing matters with Stoner, May touches him and then punches him. The episode prior makes the point of establishing May has become The Empath, able to feel others emotions through touch, but she cannot feel the emotions of Chronicoms or LMDs like Coulson. As soon as she touched "Stoner", she realized he was an imposter and acted accordingly.
  • Jossed, he was saved from becoming one by Coulson and May

At some point the team will have to stop in during the Invasion of New York
Either to preserve the timeline or just because he got roped into it, Sousa will end up pretending to be a cop helping with evacuations and encounter Captain America, thus revealing that Enver Gjokaj's appearance in Avengers was Sousa all along.

The team will return just in time for Thanos' Snap
In his death scene Enoch warns that the team will not survive past this mission, this could suggest that they'll disband at the end of the season, but equally likely, they'll return to the present on the same day Thanos assembles the infinity stones and Snaps away half of all life. If half the team dissolve into dust it is very possible the remainders may finally drift apart.

Nate Malick is the MCU's version of Mister Sinister
Given he wants to steal powers and has empowered himself with Quake abilities, it isn't a big leap to go to the X-Men villain, whose MO is to experiment on people to obtain more powers. In 7x10 it looks like he is going to be extracting the powers of Inhumans in Afterlife, including Jiaying and Gordon. If he is set to be the Chronicom's weapon to defeat SHIELD, it may even be a lead in for a new ABC series featuring the X-Men, fully integrating them into the MCU instead of feature films.

The reason the series has diverged from the main MCU timeline
This series exists in the same timeline where Thanos traveled to Endgame, thus leaving him absent for his supposed invasion of Earth prophesized by the Confederacy at the end of Season 5. As a result, this divergent line has caused major changes to the timeline compared to the MCU line, and the time travel of Season 7 means the timeline is changed again to the point it is no longer the same as the original timeline. The point is that the Chronicoms could succeed in defeating the team, only for the jump to 2018 and the Battle of Wakanda where there Thanos becomes victorious and recovers all the stones. The Chronicoms' mission becomes moot as he wrecks the universe, and the Chronicoms become one of the Endangered Species.

The series will end with the creation of the main MCU timeline
It was pretty much stated during the last four episodes of Season 5 that Avengers: Infinity War was taking place at the same time, yet it apparently didn't end with the Snap. Perhaps this means that, in the timeline that AoS note  takes place, the Avengers won (perhaps Thor did go for the head, or maybe the arm). However, the damage the Chronicoms did to history will cause this to change, resulting in the timeline shown in the movies — and, since it was already established that Team Coulson have no way of going back again, there's nothing they can do about it, and they can only console themselves with the fact that things did kinda-sorta work out in the end, albeit at a heavy cost. It would, at the very least, enable the creators to draw a line under the TV-show continuity now that it's coming to an end.

The Bus will come back.
No, not THAT bus. The model of S.H.I.E.L.D. Globemaster recommissioned and used by Team Coulson throughout most of Seasons 1 and 2 was active during the 1980s, the decade the team is currently in. Their current plane is hijacked by the main antagonists at the moment, so the team is going to need a way to reach them. Additionally, this being the final season of the show would make it the perfect time to bring back the original team plane for an encore performance. How the team would be allowed to commission one for use is up in the air, as it would be a matter of having to convince the 80s S.H.I.E.L.D. of their legitimacy.

Daisy Johnson and her team will meet Nick Fury in space.
As of the end of the series, Daisy, Kora, Sousa, and whoever else is with them are somewhere deep in space. As of the end of Spider-Man: Far From Home, Nick Fury (and maybe Maria Hill, given she left behind a Skrull in her place as well) is also in space. As of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s conclusion, we still don't know what either space mission is for. Whether both missions are tied together or the two teams will meet by chance is up in the air.

Piggybacking on the previous WMG, Daisy's team could meet with Fury's team and form S.W.O.R.D.
And we could get a new series, Agents of S.W.O.R.D.

The reason the Hulk knows how alternate timelines work in Avengers: Endgame
Is because he read the reports about SHIELD's time travelling adventures. Hence, the events of Season 7 are how the rules of time travel became known in the MCU.

Grant Ward of Earth-TRN810 will be recruited by Victoria Hand, like the Framework timeline.
Thus, thanks to Team Coulson's refusal to kill him for his MCU self's crimes, he'll have the chance to grow into the genuine hero he could've been.
  • While possible the only problem is Ward was recruited was because Garrett needed someone willing to commit cold blooded murder to shape into an agent. Also Ward was marked by HYDRA which is why Garrett knew of his situation making him ripe for recruitment. Another factor is that Framework!Ward was an NPC created to full-fill (as a mole ) a function which is why Framework!Hand was given as backstory despite her being in management and not recruitment. Also if alternatetimeline!Ward follows originaltimeline!Ward path he would be on trail for attempting to kill his parents and brother. Without Garrett to rescue him he would end up doing hard time thanks to his parents connections. Also because alternate timeline SHIELD is looking at decades of rebuilding, by the time they are actively recruiting alternate!Ward is already doing hard time. However , this timeline has suffered a major attack from space. It is entirely possible this major ripple would have definite effects on multiple lives and possible histories. This version of Ward joins the military and this time never attempts to kill his parents and older brother. Driven to protect his younger brother from threats from space. To be the protector he failed to be as a young boy. He is a driven and exemplary cadet, with his original version drive, skills and potential. But without the mistakes or choices he made . Later he applies to a fully up and running S.H.I.E.L.D and has an entry interview with a very impressed Victoria Hand. Who happily recruits him to level one.

If not for Iain De Caestecker's conflicting schedule, the Chronicoms would've brought The Doctor back as a Chronicom-enhanced LMD, like Enoch and FitzSimmons did with Coulson.
The whole plot point of Fitz being absent to establish an anchor back to the MCU timeline at the end could've worked either way, but the absence of De Caestecker himself meant that no character he plays could've been used for episodes filmed during that time frame. Given the Chronicoms had access to entire recordings of Fitz's brain, with the Doctor inside them, they could've very easily done it and used him as additional consulting for how to deal with S.H.I.E.L.D. in exchange for a chance for revenge.

The real reason that FitzSimmons named their daughter Alya...
...Was not just because she was born in the Alya star system while FitzSimmons were building their time-machine/having a life of their own. In both Turkish and Arabic, the word alya translates as sky. So in a way, they named their daughter after one of their closest friends, Daisy (formerly Skye) Johnson.