Deathlok is back on “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD,” and it turns out he hasn’t been as absent from the show as one might think. Though J. August Richards’ character has been MIA since the Season 1 finale, he’s had an important role off-screen.
“Coulson has had Deathlok in his back pocket since we saw him last,” Richards tells Zap2it
and a small group of journalists on a recent set visit. “So he pulls me out of hiding to help him out with this really huge mission that is vital to SHIELD.”
In April 7’s episode, Coulson called on Deathlok — real name Mike Peterson — to help him and Lance Hunter escape the clutches of the “real SHIELD.” According to Richards, his character has changed a lot since the audience last saw him.
“As you can see, I got a lot of upgrades while I’ve been gone. My costume is very different. There are things that are still the same. The character has been evolving since we’ve seen him last. This is like Deathlok 2.0,” he says. “I like to think Mike is now owning Deathlok.”
Fortunately for fans who missed the character, Richards is going to stick around for what he calls “an ongoing storyline.” He also teases that the “unfinished business with the other team members” will be “played out a bit.”
The one certain thing viewers can look forward to is seeing some new Deathlok powers … eventually.
“I think you’ll see them unfold over time,” Richards says. “I mean, at the core he still is who he is. He has a bunch of mechanical parts that do a bunch of interesting things. This arm piece shoots rockets, and he’s still super strong from the Centipede that he got in the first episode. Even in the comics I feel like he’s a character with a thousand powers that constantly unfold. It’s a character with a lot of possibilities.”
Mike’s biggest open-ended story is his fraught relationship with his son. That will be dealt with in Season 2, but Richards feels his character “takes so much personal responsibility from his sins that it would take a lot for him to feel better about himself.”
“Even if he saved the entire world, I don’t know if even then he could face his son,” he says. “I think something really big would need to happen for him to get over everything he feels guilty about.”