SPOILER WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for "Self Control," the latest episode of "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."
Agent Grant Ward is back -- and perhaps better than ever, seeing as he likely has everything he's ever wished for. In "Self Control," the latest episode of "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.", Daisy "Quake" Johnson and Jemma Simmons uploaded themselves into the Framework and discovered a world of Radcliffe's design. Since Radcliffe created this world to free its inhabitants of pain and regret, that means fundamental aspects of our agents' lives have changed. Unfortunately for Daisy, that also means Brett Dalton's Ward has come back.
The episode didn't quite confirm the return. As Daisy acclimated to the Framework, she received a text telling her to wake her boyfriend up because they had an assignment. With a breathless whisper of "Lincoln," she ran into the bedroom, where a man laid in bed. While the scene doesn't show the man's face, the camera does zoom into a photo of Daisy and Ward together, suggesting that Ward has indeed returned.
Marvel Entertainment went on to confirm Ward's return with a brief video of Brett Dalton. The video opens with a close up on a script titled "Identity and Change." Off-camera, a voice says, "We're ready for you, sir," only for Dalton to lower the script and reveal his face. When he stands, he reveals his chair, which reads, "B.R.E.T.T."
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) February 22, 2017
Ward has been a longtime villain on "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." In the show's first season, he was revealed to be a Hydra mole within S.H.I.E.L.D. Nevertheless, he continued his obsession with Daisy and S.H.I.E.L.D., eventually murdering Coulson's love interest Rosalind "Roz" Price in cold blood. Coulson got his revenge in Season 3 when he killed Ward on the planet Maveth, but that wasn't the end for Brett Dalton. Ward's body became possessed by an ancient Inhuman called Hive, who used his mind-control powers to influence the Inhumans around him. Hive was eventually destroyed, and the threat of Ward appeared over. Nevertheless, it looks like he'll be back for the last several episodes of Season 4 as a creation of the Framework.
Seeing as Ward was a devout Hydra agent, it seems like he'll be thriving in the world of the Framework. The episode closed with an ominous tease of Hydra's resurgence, as May was seen in the Triskelion, which bore the Hydra logo. It's unclear what role Hydra will play, though it's sure to be a big one and Ward will likely be a part of it.
Returning Tuesday, April 4 at 10 pm ET/PT on ABC, “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D” stars Clark Gregg as Agent Phil Coulson, Chloe Bennet as Daisy “Quake” Johnson, Ming-Na Wen as Melinda May, Iain De Caestecker as Leo Fitz, Elizabeth Henstridge as Jemma Simmons, Henry Simmons as Alphonso “Mack” Mackenzie and more.