The Agents of SHIELD are under new management.
For two years, Coulson (Clark Gregg) had free rein over SHIELD. The emergence of Hydra sent the organization underground, allowing the Director to operate with minimal oversight. As of Hive's (Brett Dalton) death, however, Coulson's mistakes have caught up with him. Someone has supplanted him as leader of the squad, and, with Daisy (Chloe Bennet) on the run, that change in the pecking order will not sit will with the Avengers hero.
"He's not the director anymore, his destiny is not so much in his own hand as it used to be," Gregg told Entertainment Weekly. "The person he cares about is on the run and seems to be very sought after by the authorities. It's very much changing the game for Coulson. Certainly from that teaser of where we'll be next season, he does not seem to be in good shape."
Coulson's frustration begs the question - who is in charge of SHIELD? From the sounds of it, the new Director isn't someone hailing from Phil's inner circle. If his beautiful mind act didn't induce him to give up the conn, the Inhuman outbreak certainly won't.
Instead, Civil War's Sokovia Accords might have a little something to do with a forced switch up.
"Let's just say that as a result of what's happened, there will be some changes that happened to the organization," executive producer Jeff Loeb told Entertainment Weekly.
For now, viewers will have to glean what they can from the finale flashforward.
"We'll answer all of that in the begining of next season," executive producer Maurissa Tancharoen told The Hollywood Reporter. "But there's a lot you can glean from that flash-forward, even in his appearance. He's worse for wear, he's not wearing suits, he and Mack are holed up in that hotel room, he's obviously been on stakeout for a while."
Find out more when Agents of SHIELD returns to ABC this fall, now Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET.