The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 6 premiere raises new questions about Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) and what he's been up to during the one-year time jump since season 5. The final scene of the season 6 premiere links Fitz with the Marvel Comics character the Controller - which brings about a number of questions.
At the end of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 5, Fitz tried to save Mack (Henry Simmons) and Robin's mother. Unfortunately, Fitz was killed by a falling building. However, there remains a chance for Fitz to be brought back into the fold. In order to reunite with the team in the future, Fitz had to put himself in suspended animation so that he could awaken several decades later and save the team. The team's plan was to change his fate by finding present-day Fitz's cryo-freeze chamber in outer space and waking him up.
The premiere, titled "Missing Pieces", opens with Enoch standing over Fitz's cryo-chamber when a swirling mass of energy cuts their ship in half. Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) later finds Fitz's cryo-pod, but it's empty, which could mean that he escaped. At the end of the episode, Fitz is seen in a workshop speaking to someone in an alien language. Apparently, Fitz is doing work for someone called "The Controller". Fitz then injects himself in the neck with a strange drug that turns his eyes green and also soothes his mind.
In the comics, the Controller is an Avengers and Iron Man villain who uses his technologically advanced helmet to mentally control others. In the past, the Controller has managed to control a number of prominent Marvel superheroes, including Captain America, Namor the Sub-Mariner, and Monica Rambeau with his "slave discs." He was also a one-time minion of Thanos, who gave the Controller a powerful upgrade through the use of alien technology.
Normally, the mention of a "Controller" in a Marvel TV show could simply be regarded as a coincidence, but Fitz injecting himself in the neck bears many similarities to the comic book villain's method of mind control. The Controller's slave discs were typically inserted into the necks of his victims after all. It's possible that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s take on the Controller has the villain using an addictive drug to maintain control of his slaves. This would explain why Fitz is helping him.
The mass of energy that ripped Fitz's ship in half appears to have come from a much larger ship. If the Controller is the one responsible for the destruction of Fitz's ship, then he could have recovered Fitz's cryo-chamber from the wreckage. And since Fitz is a brilliant scientist, it's easy to see why the Controller would want him in his service, willingly or unwillingly. Hopefully, though, the team finds and rescues him at some point in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 6.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 6 airs Fridays on ABC.