Thursday, November 07, 2013

Son of Coul

Just want to get my meandering thoughts on a Coulson-Asgard connection down in one place before I see THOR 2 sometime this weekend, especially in light of the latest AGENTS OF SHIELD episode. And now… some crazy talk =)

In THE AVENGERS Coulson was speared by Loki, an Asgardian god. He died heroically. In Norse tradition, what happens to a hero when he dies? He is taken to Valhalla! Otherwise, if a Norseman dies an unremarkable death, he might end up in Niflheim (I'm not certain if that's the same as Hel?) he becomes the subject of Hela, Norse goddess of the dead and daughter, somehow, of Loki.

I (want to) believe the Coulson did in fact die from Loki's attack, but because he was killed by an Asgardian, Asgardian death/afterlife protocols rule, and he—or perhaps his soul—is sent to Valhalla or Hel. As Asgardians are not meant to be worshipped as gods anymore by humans, this is something of an unnatural happening, an automatic exploitation of a kind of death loophole, an error that needs to be corrected. And it wouldn't be just Coulson, but any human whose life was taken by Loki (collateral damage in Germany and NYC, along w some SHIELD and Project Pegasus agents).

On Asgard, Odin would be the first to detect this. Actually, he might not need to notice a disturbance in the Asgardian force to know that this has occurred. Remember, Odin's ravens were on Midgard watching everything during THE AVENGERS.

Of course, Hela would no doubt hide/not mention it to any of the other Asgardians, as Coulson would be the first new humans she's welcomed in a long time. On their natural deaths, these humans should be consigned to the afterlives of their belief systems, and not pressed into Hela's service by circumstance beyond their control.

On Earth, Coulson might appear to those he was closest to, as a waking vision *ominous music*, or in dreams. Who that would be that we've already met… Fury? Hill? Pepper? The cellist? May from AGENTS? Or maybe Thor, as the Asgardian with the most quality time w the man.

Perhaps Odin has a way by which these human souls can be returned to Earth, alive (meaning that when they're back on earth, they'd be able to visit their own graves with their actual dead bodies). So, Odin would dispatch Thor to confront Hela and seek their return.

If she is not cooperative, Thor would storm Hel—I'd love to see Cap and Iron Man join him, maybe Loki would be pressed into service as well—and rescue Coulson, along with all of the other humans wrongly killed by Loki in his attacks upon Midgard. Odin should probably wave his hands and close the loophole that allowed for this misfiling of deceased humans, too.

An adjustment to my original thinking, which had Coulson trapped in Hel, providing us with a reason/excuse to have Avengers and SHIELD storm Hela's domain and battle all manner of undead beasties… Now, I think that Odin detects humans in Hel and Thor and the Avengers assume that Coulson must be among them. Once they kick Hel's ass and collect all the human souls there, they find that he's not among them. It's then that Odin talks them thru the rules of the Norse afterlife, specifically, the death of a hero. And then Odin summons a valkyrie (What's Valkyrie's name?) to bring Coulson to them. He offers him the choice of staying or returning to Earth. Coulson explains, "I'm no hero. I'm just a man with a job to do. I'd like to get back to it."

And so, Thor and company and the rescued humans return to Midgard. The humans' memory of their time in Asgard quickly fades, perhaps as a result of Odin's magicks, perhaps in obedience to Asgardian law or the self-preservation of human sanity. Y'know, the usual convenient reasons. Coulson remembers his time as "magical" and is hypnotically or psychically made to believe that it was spent in Tahiti. To shore that up with actual memory, perhaps part of his recuperation time was actually spent there.

I think that the first season of AGENTS OF SHIELD is going to revisit Coulson's post-death time in Asgard. Maybe someone/something hitched a ride back with him—maybe something bad, the Red Skull, maybe something good, Captain Marvel? Perhaps he unwittingly did something that ties him to Asgard, a la Persephone and the pomegranate seeds, requiring him to return so many days each year. Or maybe it was part of the spell or bargain that had to be struck to allow him to return to Midgard as a human, putting him in service of Odin, or Karnilla, or even Hela herself.

Anyhow, they'll encounter some Asgard-related threat that will bring Coulson's after-life misadventure in "Tahiti" to the forefront.

What does Coulson know? He knows that he's different. He's had a medical workup done to see if he's physiologically different. However, nothing seems inconsistent with his expectations. But what would those expectations be? Proper diagnostics for an enhanced LMD (based on Phineas Horton's Human Torch android tech), or the healthy test results of a human being? 

What does everyone else think? May, Fury, and the SHIELD doc all seem to believe that Coulson is somehow not-Coulson. Little jokey remarks from Coulson himself seem to worry May that he may be aware that he's not fully human. The thing is (and the great thing for writing it is) that we don't know if Coulson is consciously teasing his colleagues (and us) or not.

The Coulson-in-Valhalla/Hel scenario can allow for him to return to Earth in his body, cuz hey! Asgardian superscience! However, I'd really really like for that to have been impossible, and that his soul could only return to Earth in a vessel of some sort. I'm thinking an LMD modified with Coulson's DNA for the organic bits. How much would Coulson love taking up residence in the original Human Torch's body, right? =)

Oh, wait. Okay.

Coulson is speared on the helicarrier. He dies.

Fury has his body taken to a secret lab on the carrier where his brain/memories/engrams/whatnot are recorded and saved and saved.

SHIELD docs then use his DNA to create an LMD clone of Coulson at the age of his death (reproducing all of his scars along the way). They then program the LMD's brain with Coulson's recording, adding the magical Tahiti placeholder after his spearing and death.

This is who's running the Agents of SHIELD team. A copy of Coulson. Which is kind of amazing, considering how human, humanely, and compassionately he's been behaving. It is NOT Coulson.

However, a trip to Asgard might allow for this LMD to become the *complete* Coulson, by superscientifically adding the fallen Coulson's ghost to the machinery.

And this artificial LMD body could be capable of harnessing tech and powers and abilities that a normal human body could not, like, let's say, producing and storing energy from solar radiation, the control of the density of its molecules, which would allow for flight, enhanced strength, and intangibility. Doubt it? Hey, did you see this week's ep of AGENTS? Hel-LO! The Chitauri virus does exactly that! Sure in a HUMAN body it ends up killing the host, but how about an LMD and/or the Torch's body? They're giving us the pieces to this puzzle. Coulson would then be The Vision.

Or, wait. No.

Coulson does make it back from Asgard/Valhalla/Hel, in an Odin Force-restored human body. LMD Coulson becomes The Vision. LMD Coulson joins the Avengers roster and human Coulson takes his place as leader of the Agents.

Kinda weird for the Agents, I know, but I like that we get to have both Coulson and Vision at the end of this. Which probably means it's too good to be true/happen.


I hope you enjoyed my crazy talk. =)

If you're interested, check out some earlier, related crazy talk…

Post-AVENGERS crazy talk

Post-AVENGERS crazy talk 2

Setting up for the next AVENGERS…

Keep on keepin on~

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