The finale to the fifth season of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was always going to feature the heartbreaking death of a much-loved character. Ominously titled “The End,” the episode was mostly preparing us for Phil Coulson to be the one to meet his maker. That doesn’t actually happen, though, with the fan favourite agent’s fate being left somewhat ambiguous for the now confirmed season 6 to explore further.
Instead, another member of Coulson’s team gave their life to safe the world instead. When Daisy Johnson uses the Centipede Serum to enhance her earth-quaking powers to send Graviton into space, she inadvertently causes the destruction of a nearby building – crushing Fitz inside! The team finds their genius, but troubled, friend still alive but his injuries are too severe and he soon passes away.
This will hit Fitz fans hard, as Iain De Caestecker’s character has had a tough time this season as it is. Due to the stress of attempting to avert an apocalyptic future, he had a breakdown and developed multiple personalities, with his evil persona as The Doctor from the Framework universe (as seen in season 4) making a return. Still, he at least had one good thing that happened to him this year: in the show’s 100th episode, he finally married his longtime love interest Jemma Simmons.
While Fitz is definitely dead for now, he might actually be able to come back… thanks to the gift of time travel. Earlier this season, he elected to go into cryogenic suspension in order to travel to the future the long way around to meet up with his friends who’d been transported to 2091. At the end of the season 5 finale, we see the remaining S.H.I.E.L.D. agents heading into space in order to wake up this version of Fitz and get their friend back.
Unfortunately, this may cause even more drama next season though, as this particular Fitz has yet to marry or even propose to Simmons, which will no doubt bring about a lot of heartache for her. Still, he won’t have developed his multiple personality disorder yet, so perhaps he’ll be a more stable person from now on.
We’ll have to see when Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns for its shortened sixth season in summer 2019.