After a seven-year run, Agents of SHIELD aired its two-part series finale tonight. After the team returned to their original timeline and defeated the Chronicoms, the show jumped to a year later and saw them all reuniting to catch up in a Framework-style setting. During a recent round of interviews with the cast and executive producers, the folks involved with the show were asked about filming the final scene and how it feels for their virtual ending to be so timely...
Natalia Cordova-Buckley (Elena "Yo-Yo" Rodriguez)
I actually remember ... being like, 'Oh, it's so sad that they're not together.' It's so sad that they have to connect now technologically, and they're not in the lab discussing what they're going to do next, or in an office. It's so sad that they are not actually with each other.
Agents of SHIELD always had such a prophet-like way of reflecting what was going to happen later on in life before it did. And here we are, and we can't touch each other, and we can't be with each other, and we're doing our final press the way we did our final scene, which is so interesting.prevnext
Ming-Na Wen (Melinda May)
I mean, it was a tough scene to do because there were moments where we're realizing that it was our final scene together as a group. And then it was tough because then we would have to pause, and one of us leaves and it was like the little... Whatever that game is. I can't remember. But yeah, it was sort of like what happened with season five, the last episode of season five, when we didn't know that we were coming back, and we thought it was the end of the series. Knowing for sure that it was the series finale that we were shooting, yeah, it was very, very bittersweet.prevnext
Henry Simmons (Alphonso "Mack" Mackenzie)
I just remember the immense weight that was in the room, because the way they designed it, we shot everything, and then that was ... the final scene that we all shot together. So I remember the immense weight that we had in knowing that this was it for us together. And people trying to ... You try to have moments of levity in there, the joking around, the connecting, but there's always that pull of this was the end. So that's the one thing I remember.prevnext
Iain De Caestecker (Leo Fitz)
It's scary how much that mirrors where we are just now, but I thought it was really fitting ... I thought that was a really cool thing, I thought when I read it, I thought they gave everybody a very satisfying end. And I also think ... having people that have stuck with the show for that long through seven seasons, it felt like a very satisfying end, and I hope for all of them, too.prevnext
Elizabeth Henstridge (Jemma Simmons)
And an authentic tone of that scene, that there's an awkwardness to it. And people don't quite know what to say and when to say, and part of that is it's virtual like trying to have a group Zoom conversation.
It was also fun to see how everybody had their little make-over of what they would look like in a year.prevnext
Clark Gregg (Phil Coulson)
That final scene - being together, but not being together, attempting to stay connected, but actually being in different spaces - was a kind of sci-fi version of the Zoom nightmare/reality that we're all living in now. So much of the show felt like life and art bled back and forth.
Certainly saying goodbye to people you'd been working with, some for two years, some for seven. Checking in with them and knowing that your lives were taking these different paths and doing so in a way that... Thank God for technology because you got to even do it, but on the other hand, there's a real limitation to technology that you're not there hugging, you're not there in the ways that you might like to be. It felt prescient and appropriate.prevnext
Chloe Bennet (Daisy "Quake" Johnson)
It eerily mirrored our future. It's weird to think about that now because I remember being like, 'Did we end on a video call?' That's crazy. And now...
It's weird how normal that is now and how people are going to watch tha t... Everyone [in] different places now after a year. It's weird how much of a foreshadow it is ... that we're living now. It didn't feel like we finished shooting SHIELD yet. This is just second framework, surprise. Season eight is actually a crazy, real-life ride.prevnext
Maurissa Tancharoen (Executive Producer)
Firstly, we had no idea that we'd be predicting the future of this moment right now on Zoom.
But the year jump amplifies the nostalgia of the moment as well, because you're aware that they are now established in their new lives that are separate from one another. So, it hits harder that they have essentially moved on, but then there's this longing for one another, not only just emotionally and what you feel in the room, but the fact that they're not in the same room with one another and they cannot touch one another.
A lot of thought went into the order that they... The idea that Daisy's the last because she's the one who clings to it the most. She's the one that cried at Mack saying, "I don't know who I am without you," and that she misses it the most, but she's okay.prevnext
Jed Whedon (Executive Producer)
You know, I think one of the things was that we knew what the feeling we wanted to have was, which was the feeling that we were having in creating this last season, right? ... You've spent all this time with people and you're not saying the show's ending. It's not like we're breaking up. I just used to see [Jeffrey] Bell every morning and we would powwow for at least a half-hour every day for seven years, that's going to end.0comments
And so that feeling that everybody was having, the actors, production, our last production meeting, our last prop meeting. We knew we wanted to hit that idea that life moves on and that as you grow up and these characters who started with their puppy love and their wide eyes are now seasoned veterans. And that you go through life, as Mack says, "Yeah, it'll be different, but that's okay." We knew what we wanted that feeling to be. So the whole game in the writer's room was how to capture that. The year jump was an early idea. I think it was one of the Zuckerman sisters who came up with the concept that it's actually virtual because we were trying to figure out this puzzle of, how do we get them there but keep that feeling?
It's just the emotional experience that we all had, as writers and as people making the show, is definitely the emotional context of that final scene. We're not saying goodbye. We're just not going to be together. It's just going to be different and we'll always have this experience that will bond us forever.prev