Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., S3 Ep05 – 4,722 Hours

While last week’s episode concluded with a pretty tragic ending involving the death of Agent May’s ex-husband, we’re going to have to wait until next week to see the aftermath of those events. This week’s episode, entitled “4,722 Hours,” focused entirely on Jemma Simmons and the 4,722 hours she spent on an alien world. As the events on that alien world unravel we begin to learn why she now has to return.

ELIZABETH HENSTRIDGE“4,722 Hours” begins right where last season’s finale left off, as we see Simmons get sucked into the Monolith. From there she is directly transported to a world in a whole other solar system. Her surroundings have a blueish hue to them as there is no sun, but there’s enough light from neighboring planets to see. The first third of this episode relies heavily on Elizabeth Henstridge’s performance as she wanders around not straying far from the area the Monolith took her. She spends a couple of days waiting for Fitz to save her and cursing the fact there is no sun before she gets the idea that she may be on this planet for a while.

Taking matters into her own hands she ends up finding a pond of water and killing some kind of snake monster for food. Henstridge does a good job carrying the first part of this episode on her own, but Simmons soon finds out that she is not alone. The episode takes a turn as she falls into a hole in the ground and is then caged and imprisoned.

She is trapped by a human male named Will who thinks that she isn’t real. It’s here where we begin to see why present-day Simmons needs to return. As the episode progresses, Simmons gains Will’s trust and vice versa. He is able to tell her of the planet and its mysteries and tells her of how he got there. We find out that NASA had the Monolith before S.H.I.E.L.D. and tried to use it as an alternate form of space travel. He had traveled to that planet in 2001 with a full crew who all went mad and eventually died.

There’s a looming threat of monsters out in the sandstorms above them, but we never get a complete idea of what these things are hunting them down. They appear humanoid in appearance, or they are able to trick their prey into seeing a human form. Later in the episode one appears as an astronaut.

By the end of the episode, after one failed attempt at going home through a scheduled portal opening, Simmons and Will have gained full trust of each other, have nightly dinners together, and hint at a romantic relationship as well. It’s at this point we see the flare thrown up by Fitz as he was able to open a new portal to the planet. Simmons makes it, while Will gets left behind, defending her from one of the monsters and getting trapped in a sandstorm.

ELIZABETH HENSTRIDGEThe final conclusion of “4,722 Hours” sees Simmons concluding her story to Fitz and informing him of why she has to go back. Fitz is seemingly angry and possibly jealous at first, knowing that she fell for someone else on that alien world. He storms off away from her and heads to the lab, where we see his anger was mistook for determination. He lays out all of his knowledge of the Monolith and offers to help his friend rescue Will. This helps cement the fact that Fitz truly is a loyal friend to Simmons and will do anything to help her.

“4,722 Hours” was a refreshing episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. It was definitely one of the most unique episodes as it focused entirely on one character rather than jumping back and forth between subplots. We now know more about Simmons and were able to see the character progress and persevere in harsh conditions. There really isn’t anything bad I can say about this episode, except that I couldn’t believe Simmon’s iPhone battery lasted for 6 months with no recharge. We can chock that up to advanced S.H.I.E.L.D. technology, I guess. Overall “4,722 Hours” was very good and a lot of credit has to go to Elizabeth Henstridge for carrying the episode on her own for a good portion of it.

Next week Agent May is out for revenge for the death of her ex-husband. Check out ABC’s official promo for “Among Us Hide…” below and feel free to let us know what you thought of “4,722 Hours” in the comments.