Spoilers follow for the Season 4 winter finale of Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Last night's episode of Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., "Laws Of Inferno Dynamics," will probably be one of the most talked-about episodes for some time. For a season finale, #AgentsOfSHIELD put it all on the table and then some by pardoning Daisy Johnson for her crimes, having Jeffrey Mace suit up, and we can't forget about Aida going dark.
It was a wild ride that wrapped up many plot threads but also developed a few new ones in t last moments, including Robbie Reyes's fate.
Robbie Reyes Vanishes Alongside Eli Morrow
In the closing sequence of the episode, it appears that #RobbieReyes sacrifices himself to put an end to his uncle Eli's evil plans, but appearances aren't everything. #EliMorrow was planning on destroying half of Los Angeles with a nuclear bomb when Robbie and the rest of S.H.I.E.L.D. stop Eli. However, stopping Eli resulted in Robbie disappearing alongside him.
The two were caught in a burst of energy when Robbie (as #GhostRider) began using his penance stare to judge Eli Morrow. Robbie didn't get the opportunity to completely judge Eli and the two wound up vanishing midway through the burning of Eli's soul.
Despite not getting the opportunity to judge Eli for his crimes, Robbie was able to incapacitate Eli in another way: by merging with him.
During the final scene where Eli and Robbie are both still in the machine built by Eli, Robbie's attempt to use the Ghost Rider to judge Eli didn't go as planned. Instead of judging him, the flames around Robbie engulfed both of them. To any reasonable person, it would seem like the fires would have burned Eli to ash — but instead, the flames merely engulfed Eli before he and Robbie disappear.
Did Robbie Merge With Eli In Those Last Moments?
Accounting for Eli not burning up from Ghost Rider's flames, and appearing to merge with Robbie, this happenstance is likely foreshadowing a specific event from the comics taking place. The comic version of Robbie Reyes' Ghost Rider differs a bit from the version depicted on Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.
In the comics, Robbie Reyes is possessed by Eli Morrow's spirit the moment he accepts the Ghost Rider spirit into his body. Robbie doesn't learn of Eli Morrow actually impersonating the Ghost Rider spirit until long after the two are fused within Robbie's body.
In comparison to how Robbie Reyes' Ghost Rider is depicted on Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., Eli Morrow never became a part of Robbie Reyes, even after Robbie took on the Ghost Rider spirit. However, the scene of Robbie and Eli getting caught in a wave of energy together could see them merged, just like their comic-book counterpart in #MarvelComics.
Will The Comics Be More Of An Influence On Robbie Reyes When He Resurfaces?
It's quite possible that when Robbie does return, his other half (the Ghost Rider) will be influenced by Eli Morrow — similar to how Robbie's Ghost Rider is influenced by Eli in the comics. Within the comics, Eli possesses the most control over Robbie when Robbie transforms into the Ghost Rider. If we consider the comics as a reliable layout for what's to come, it's possible that Robbie's return won't be as joyful as we think, seeing as how Eli will probably be manipulating the Ghost Rider spirit within him.
Rather than judging the guilty for their crimes, Eli will probably utilize Ghost Rider's abilities to exact revenge on all those he sees as deserving of vengeance. Although, Eli and Robbie becoming one could see Eli's spirit develop into one with some dignity, but that's highly unlikely since the comics foreshadow a major conflict between Robbie and Eli when they do merge together.
The two are almost guaranteed a return despite appearing to be disintegrated. Agent Coulson himself notes how a "previous" Ghost Rider has come back from similar setbacks, so it shouldn't be too much of a surprise for Robbie Reyes to make his way back to Earth's dimension.
Robbie And Eli Are In Hell — Or At Least A Dimension Like Hell
The last scene, when Robbie and Eli disappear, seems to show them going through a gateway to another dimension rather than being disintegrated. With interdimensional travel becoming commonplace in the Marvel Universe, it's likely that Robbie and Eli were not destroyed. Keeping the comics in mind, if Robbie and Eli have fused together, their journey together has likely lead them to Marvel's version of Hell.
The Hell within the Marvel universe is probably different from the Hell you're thinking of, in the way that Marvel's Hell will likely be presented as a parallel dimension rather than an afterlife of sorts, to remain within the current themes on Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the MCU more broadly, as explored in Doctor Strange.
How Will Robbie Get Out Of Hell?
In terms of how Robbie Reyes will escape from the Hell dimension is up for debate, but he could be freed by a Hell-dwelling spirit that grants him an opportunity to leave. Of course, there'll likely be a cost that Robbie will accept. We'll just have to wait until Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns to find out.
What do you think will happen to Robbie and Eli? And when do you think they will return? Or do you think Johnny Blaze will make his presence known before Robbie Reyes gets an opportunity to come back? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.