S3 E02 Purpose in the Machine

10/06/15 | TV-PG | CC

Gloucestershire, England - 1839: A secret society of nobleman selects one of their ranks to embark on a journey of no return, which means…entering the stone monolith that swallowed Simmons in the Season 2 finale.

In the present day, we pickup where we left off last episode: our Agents find Fitz pounding on the monolith in frustration. The Agents pull Fitz to safety, and he discovers sand on his fingers, proof that the rock is a portal to a much older planet somewhere in the universe. The team is convinced; Simmons is out there.

Meanwhile, Ward and his henchman Kebo are on a mission to build a better Hydra. Ward straps an old Hydra leader to a car hood and speeds around until he discloses the location of a college kid named Alexander Braun.

Coulson, Bobbi, and Fitz go in search of an expert on portal travel and find a familiar friend: Professor Elliot Randolph, an Asgardian on earth hiding among humans. Coulson persuades Randolph to help S.H.I.E.L.D. unlock the mystery of the monolith. 

Dr. Andrew Garner arrives at HQ to evaluate Joey Gutierrez, an Inhuman candidate for a new team -- Coulson’s Secret Warriors. Daisy asks him why he and May are not together, but he doesn’t divulge.

Speaking of May, we find her with her elderly father, Charlie, in Sun City, Arizona. Charlie doesn’t believe that May is visiting him simply because he is recovering from a hit and run car accident. 

Ward kidnaps Alexander Braun from his private yacht in Ibiza and takes him to the Hydra warehouse, where Kebo tries to forcibly extract banking data from him.  

Randolph leads the Agents to the ruins of a castle in Gloucestershire -- the same location from the beginning of the episode. Randolph says the key to unlocking the monolith lies within the chamber, which contains a machine that somehow controls the portal.

Back in Sun City, May brutally attacks an intruder lurking outside her father’s home, but realizes it’s…Hunter?! Hunter tries to convince May to go on the offensive and kill Ward. She refuses; she’d rather protect family than rejoin S.H.I.E.L.D. Hunter warns that she’ll never stop worrying about Ward until he is neutralized. 

Mack and Daisy deliver the monolith to the castle chamber, and the team tests the machinery. The portal liquefies briefly...but the machinery falls apart but not before emitting a sound that only Daisy could hear, causing her to pass out.

Back at Hydra, Alexander knocks out Kebo and reveals his true identity: Werner Von Strucker, the son of Baron Wolfgang Von Strucker, one of Hydra’s greatest leaders. Delighted, Ward tells Werner it’s time he earn the respect befitting a Von Strucker.

Daisy realizes that the machine opened the portal by emitting a frequency. Not only can she hear that frequency, she can replicate it long enough for Fitz to send a probe through the portal.  

Elsewhere, Hunter singlehandedly thwarts a ring of gun smugglers. Afterwards, May joins Hunter in his quest to stop Ward.

Back at the castle, Daisy opens the portal, but Fitz doesn’t just throw in a probe ---he jumps in! Fitz finds himself in a sandstorm in another world. He hears Simmons’ voice calling and pulls her to safety just before Daisy shuts the portal. Simmons is safe! Exhausted, Simmons returns to base but has a nightmare –something traumatic must have happened on the other side of that portal.  

Finally, we find that Werner Von Strucker has enrolled as a student in Dr. Andrew Garner’s class. This is all part of Ward’s twisted plan… 

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