‘Agents of SHIELD’ Postmortem: Chloe Bennet on Lash, LGBT Characters and Simmons’ Fate

agents of shield CHLOE BENNET, LUKE
ABC

Spoiler warning: Do not read on unless you’ve seen the Season 3 premiere of “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” titled “Laws of Nature.”

“Agents of SHIELD” crammed plenty of twists into its season premiere, introducing us to Constance Zimmer’s enigmatic Rosalind Price, head of the Advanced Threat Containment Unit, and two new Inhumans — potential ally Joey Gutierrez (Juan Pablo Raba).; and the destructive Lash (Matthew Willig). The episode’s final moments also revealed that Agent Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) is still alive on a mysterious planet after being swallowed up by the Kree Monolith in last season’s finale.

Variety spoke to “SHIELD” star Chloe Bennet (aka Daisy Johnson) about her character’s dynamic with Lincoln (Luke Mitchell), suspicions about Rosalind and what’s ahead in episode 302.

Do you think Daisy is going to be torn between her loyalties to SHIELD and the Inhumans at any point, or is she pretty firmly on the same page as the rest of SHIELD now?

She has a really interesting perspective because she is a SHIELD agent and she’s an Inhuman, and she feels a loyalty to both sides. I think she feels very strongly for both; that’s gonna be the biggest struggle for her this season — at least that’s what I’ve played so far. I think she feels a responsibility because her mom, as crazy as she was, was trying to protect Inhumans and trying to help these people, whether they’re kids or adults who are turning into something that they’re not necessarily ready to be, or they’re automatically turning into something different and society isn’t ready for it. That can be hard. I love how relevant that is now with LGBT rights and people feeling different … and the acceptance of that and learning to be okay with yourself. I think she feels strongly on both sides, so it’ll be an interesting season. Loyalty hasn’t shown more on either side so far, so that’s gonna be up to the writers.

Speaking of LGBT rights, the show introduced its first openly gay character in Joey. He’s struggling with his new Inhuman abilities and obviously has a different perspective from Daisy, but also perhaps some common ground because they’re both used to feeling like outsiders. What can you preview about their dynamic and what he could potentially add to the team?

Joey is the first person that she really feels like could be part of the team; they have to go through a certain level of assessment before that happens. As for him being gay, I was really, really happy to see that, and I am mostly happy to see how nonchalant it was and how subtle it was and how no one made a big deal about it. That’s the kind of reference to someone being gay that I like to see; it doesn’t affect the storyline in any way — it’s subtle, and I thought that was really good on the writers. Just like when people ask what it’s like to play a strong female character and it’s always a little frustrating…

Right, they’re just people.

Yeah, why don’t you ask Clark (Gregg) what it’s like to play a strong male character? I don’t know what that means. It’s just normal, so I like it when it’s subtle like that and they did a really good job.

Lincoln was pretty reluctant to join Daisy and Mack (Henry Simmons) in the premiere — how important is it to her to bring him into the fold?

He is gonna be a tough little cookie; I don’t think it’s gonna be as easy as people think and I’m pretty happy about that because often TV tends to be very easy in how things happen very conveniently. It’s definitely not gonna be convenient getting him on the team or convincing him to work with us. We have different views on what we should do with the Inhumans, he has a different view on what it is after the aftermath of Afterlife; he and I disagree a little bit on it and it’s gonna take a little negotiating on Daisy’s part. But at the same time, I think we like each other, so that will also play a part in him potentially joining the team. We’ll also see a darker side of Lincoln and a bit of who he was before we were introduced to him in Afterlife, so there’ll be a lot of nice layers pulled back on Lincoln. Luke Mitchell plays it so well, so I’m really looking forward to learning more about him and I think everyone else will love it too. Plus I think Daisy deserves a little action, don’t you?

I think so — someone who’s not a homicidal, torturing… 

…Psychopath? Yeah!

Poor Ward (Brett Dalton).

I know, poor Ward.

Or not poor Ward, because he was a torturing psychopath…

I know, people are very adamant, they go “he had a hard childhood!” (Laughs) … But all of the team probably didn’t have an easy childhood either in the show — I don’t think everyone’s had it as easy as you’d think. He’s definitely a murderous sociopath, so I think it’ll be exciting to see him at the head of Hydra and doing his bad thing. He does it very well.

Do you think Daisy has written Ward off, or is there a part of her that would still want to save him despite everything he’s done?

I wouldn’t say she’s completely written him off, no. I think there’s a level of “okay, you’re totally crazy” and she would never say it out loud that she’s not totally written him off, but I like to think that deep, deep, deep down, she doesn’t quite buy this evil s–t.

We also got our first look at Lash in the premiere, which was suitably terrifying. What kind of threat does he pose to the team aside from his physical power?

The Lash situation is going to be one that’s gonna really mess people up. I can’t really say much else, but it’s not what it seems, is what I’ll say.

Rosalind Price doesn’t seem particularly trustworthy, given that she’s also hunting the Inhumans, if not blowing holes in their chests. What’s Daisy’s take on her?

She doesn’t want her as a stepmom, that’s for sure. (Laughs.) It’s a little too convenient; she’s right to feel a little bit of iffiness, she doesn’t trust her — she thinks she has a separate agenda from what she’s saying to Coulson and I think the audience will see pretty quickly what that is. [Daisy’s] just trying to make sure she keeps Coulson in check, like… “don’t go sleeping with the enemy any time soon!” I think it’ll be interesting. We’re only on episode 7 and it’s already pulled all of us around; we don’t know which way it’s gonna go, so I’m excited to see what happens with that.

The final moments of the premiere proved that Simmons is still alive — what can you preview about next week’s episode, which sees the return of Peter MacNicol as the Asgardian warrior formerly known as Elliot Randolph?

We’re all gonna be pretty adamant on seeing what happens with Simmons, so the team is gonna go to great lengths to try and get her back.

“Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on ABC.

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  1. Joe Garrett says:

    Why is the Lash situation really going to mess people up? And why did you word it without using a pronoun?

  2. Daisy says:

    Actually Joey isn’t the first gay MCU character, Victoria Hand and Isabelle Hartley who were introduced and then promptly killed in Seasons one and two of AoS respectively, were and are the first MCU Cinemetic gay characters. Both canonly in the show and in the comics. The shows writers eventually went on to say that while they knew the two were gay and a couple, they opted not to explore it very far, if at all, because they didn’t want to be known as the writers that “killed off two gay characters”. I’m very, very glad to see we have another gay character in the MCU but please don’t forget these two ladies!

  3. cubs223425 says:

    “Right, they’re just people.”

    Yeah, except the part where you asked specific questions about the character for being gay. I mean, no doubling of standards there, right?

  4. Simmons is on the side of the moon where there is an atmosphere and where the king of the Inhumans live “Black Bolt”

  5. Asian Guy says:

    Even I think the gay reference was a bit awkward and unnecessary, however subtle it may have been…and I think I have more of a right to say this than anyone. And to be honest, the first episode with its cheesy new monster villain wasn’t that great overall either.

  6. This is a straight world not a gay world try pulling this off over in the far east where the majority of the people reside, this whole LBGT movement is making me sick sorry folks it’s not the norm & never will be men sleeping with men & having anal sex is an abomination, I watch this shows for entertainment value
    not to have some writer/producer get is gay agenda across count me out as a fan.

    • biperson says:

      Scott Daniels, you are an asshole.

      • biperson says:

        And if you’re gonna try to insult LGBT people, then you should at least use proper grammar and know how to spell LGBT. It’s LGBT f***head, not LBGT. And you’re an idiot if you didn’t notice the bright red line under it. See, I’m a girl who goes to school and gets into fights on a daily basis because I’m bi.

  7. marvel agents of shield laws of nature introduces gay agenda, this is why I will no longer watch this series it’s quit evident in what they are trying to do I wouldn’t even call it subtle, your ex boyfriend
    was a health nut, why was that necessary to ad that verbiage other that to get your agenda out
    what about the straight people who are offended by this.

    • biperson says:

      You gotta be f***ing kidding me bro. “What about the straight people who are offended by this.”? Seriously? What about the gay people who are offended by your asshole comments? You should really just f*** off.

  8. Hydrox says:

    They had to make room for a homosexual. Big surprise.

    • Jessica Carlaw says:

      Gay people exist. You do know that….right? If they had mentioned his ex-girlfriend, you wouldn’t have said “They’re trying to draw attention to the fact that he’s straight!”

      Learn how to live in 2015, or stop living in 2015.

      • Craig says:

        Small chance = still a chance
        It would start to get sketchy if there was more than one gay Inhuman.

      • Probabilistic Prognisticator says:

        This guy is the sixth Inhuman they’ve found. (6/7 billion) * .018 = 1.54 x 10(-9) chance that this guy would be gay.

        They found a unique and beautiful unicorn. That or they just threw a…ahem…bone to the LGTBBQ group.

      • Craig says:

        I’m not sure why you even think this is an argument.

        If you’re seeing gay people in every show, then it would logically make sense- since every single show is taking place in a different fictional universe, the percentage is present individually in every show. Naturally, one or two gay people are going to pop up in almost every show which desires to have a place in the ever-changing world. Like someone above said, according to that statistic you value you highly, there would be one gay person (at least) per every 50 characters, so all these shows so far have matched this proportion.

        Also, using unrealistic hyperbole, like “why do I have to see gay people on every single episode of every TV show made?” only further discredits your questionable argument.

      • mascha says:

        Hmz, it’s always so weird how people complain when there ISN’t someone gay or bi or whatever in a show, and once there is this once guest character that’s gay (without making a big deal out of it) it’s suddenly “why do there have to be gay people everywhere?!” Seriously, what do people want?

        If 1.8% of the population is gay, well, there definitely have been 50 people on this show, so it only makes sense that at some point, they come in contact with someone gay.

        I”ll never be able to figure out people, in general XD

      • Massie says:

        I know gay people exist. 1.8 percent of the population, meaning 98.2 percent of the population is NOT gay. So why do I have to see gay people on every single episode of every TV show made?

    • Wally says:

      No surprise as Disney/ABC is trying to rival NBC/Bravo in gaayness. The interview above is fatuous and self-serving. The revelation was hardly subtle; random statements about his boyfriend. And no one “made a big deal about it” because THAT’S HOW THE WRITERS WROTE IT. Interviewer lost objectivity by noting how she loved it. And is an actress on the show (a terrible one at that, but she’s multi-cultural and looks good in a tank top so…) really going to do anything contrary to the LGBT tilt?

      • Anonymous says:

        Instead of bible-thumping preachers and politicians obsessing about what people do in private, it seems like it’s the media that does now – thrilled with all the actors, characters, plot lines, etc. I don’t base my identity around who I do or don’t sleep with, nor do I expect praise for my choices. It’s not phobia, it’s just fatigue.

      • JC says:

        What do people of your ilk really hope to get out of these constant comments that complain about LGBT characters on TV? And please, don’t give an answer that includes the term, “gay agenda,” unless you have a printed copy of this agenda that you can share with all of us.

        Gay people are not going to go away on TV or in real life just because you don’t want to see them.

      • Massie says:

        Excellent post, Wally.

  9. Gary o. says:

    You should go see 90min heaven, you would find out what you will miss. Being gay or bi.or a tv. It show you hate god and the rain bow is the new hate flag.

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