"Wake Up" is the eleventh episode of the fourth season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D..
May works to uncover the truth about what happened to her; Aida's next move puts everyone's life at risk.
Five days ago, when Agent May ran a routine mission to Dr. Radcliffe's home, Radcliffe had Aida run the "Sunset Protocol" on her, kidnapping her and preparing an LMD to take her place. Four days later, the real Melinda May is trapped inside a scenario designed to keep her calm. The scenario restarts whenever she goes off-script. May eventually realizes something is wrong with her relaxing day at the spa, and violently awakens from the scenario. She tries to escape, but Aida and Dr. Radcliffe sedate her and put her into another scenario. A day later, Aida asks her creator why it is necessary for the original Agent May to be kept alive. Radcliffe, appalled by her suggestion, reminds Aida that May will be returned to S.H.I.E.L.D. once her replacement fulfills her purpose and retrieves the Darkhold.
At the Playground, S.H.I.E.L.D. and Talbot prepare for Daisy to face a Senate hearing about her vigilante activities fighting the Watchdogs. Simmons and Talbot are both worried about what Senator Nadeer has planned for the hearing, but Daisy and the rest of the team are confident that they can handle her. Coulson also plans for himself and Yo-Yo to break into the senator's office and plant devices to keep an eye on her. Talbot strongly advises against this, warning that if they are caught Nadeer will launch a full investigation into them, and will likely take the opportunity to move S.H.I.E.L.D.'s assets into military custody. Mack, meanwhile, chooses to take a personal day. After having sex with Yo-Yo, he gets a text that visibly bothers him. Yo-Yo asks what's wrong, but he leaves without explaining.
The team arrives at the Capitol Building. Mace tries to calm down Daisy's nerves while they wait for the Senate committee to join them. Meanwhile, Coulson and Yo-Yo break into Senator Nadeer's office to plant their bugs. Yo-Yo pesters him to reveal what is bothering Mack, but Coulson says he doesn't know anything more about Mack's history than what is in his file. Yo-Yo opens a drawer in the senator's desk, setting off a device that knocks both of them to their feet and alerts Capitol security. Meanwhile, Daisy has to answer Senator Nadeer's questions about her activities as the vigilante Quake. Shen Daisy denies the senator's accusation that S.H.I.E.L.D. continues to act outside the law, she has Capitol secutiry bring Coulson and Yo-Yo in handcuffs into the room where the hearing is being held. Talbot and Mace meet with Senator Nadeer and the committee chairman in private. While Daisy, Coulson and Yo-Yo wait to hear what deal they reach with the Senate, they realize that Senator Nadeer knew Yo-Yo specifically would be there, meaning that there must be a leak inside S.H.I.E.L.D.. Mace and Talbot come over to them after striking a deal with the senators. They're free to go, but there will be a full investigation into S.H.I.E.L.D.. Talbot admonishes Coulson for letting this happen despite his warning. When Coulson accuses the general of being the leak, Talbot reminds him he is the only reason S.H.I.E.L.D. exists.
Meanwhile, Agent May starts to get free from her restraints. Before she can get out, Aida comes to check on her, and accidentally knocks over a jar of cotton swabs. While she goes to get a dustpan to clean up her mess, May reaches down and grabs a shard of glass to cut herself out of her restraints. She makes a break for it, but Aida again blocks her escape. She fights Aida, and it soon becomes apparent that the LMD is willing to kill her to prevent her from getting out. May grabs a sconce Aida ripped out of the wall and impales her on it. Seemingly in the clear, May continues to run through the apartment building to find a way out. Aida corners her on a higher floor. They fight again, ending with May sending Aida flying over the railing. As she falls, the air seems to rip open and Aida disappears. The LMD reappears behind Agent May, and congratulates her for doing better on this run. May's escape was all another scenario designed to keep her passive, unaware that she was being held captive. As May moves in for another attack, Aida wipes May's memory and re-starts the program.
Simmons and May the LMD try to figure out the source of the leak to Senator Nadeer. Simmons realizes it might have something to do with the project Fitz is obsessed with and has been keeping a secret from her. Simmons grabs his tablet to find that he's been looking into Aida's programming against orders. Radcliffe used Deathlok's eye to help design Aida, so with her head still active, he has had a direct feed to the goings-on at the Playground. May, who's been going through something of an existential crisis since discovering the circuitry under her wound, realizes Radcliffe might be behind this, and leaves on her own to confront him. Radcliffe reveals to her that she is an LMD. The May LMD threatens Dr. Radcliffe, but finds she is completely unable to attack him. He also says she was programmed not to know she was and LMD or to have any reason to reveal she might be an LMD to the members of S.H.I.E.L.D.. Just then, S.H.I.E.L.D. agents swarm his apartment and apprehend Dr. Radcliffe for his role in Aida's attack on the Playground.
Back at the base, Yo-Yo is about to break up with Mack for keeping secrets from her. He tells her that "Hope" is his daughter he had with his ex-girlfriend and who died only a few days after she was born. This would have been Hope's eleventh birthday, and he thought it was right to spend the day with his ex. Fitz confronts Dr. Radcliffe in his cell. He feels particularly betrayed by Radcliffe's actions, as the two of them began to think of each other as father and son. Radcliffe says Nathanson's death was an accident, and that his primary purpose is to preserve life. Fitz grabs the guard's gun and shoots "Radcliffe" in the head, revealing him to be an LMD. The real Dr. Radcliffe is meeting with Senator Nadeer, who promises to help him find the Darkhold if he meets the Superior. Aida and the real Agent May, meanwhile, have been moved to a new location.
Elsewhere, Agent May has been given a new scenario to keep her pacified. She runs through that horrible night in Bahrain where she was attacked by the Katya Belyakovs. This time, however, she gets to save the girl.
- Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson
- Ming-Na Wen as Melinda May and Melinda May (Life Model Decoy)
- Chloe Bennet as Daisy Johnson/Quake
- Iain De Caestecker as Leo Fitz
- Elizabeth Henstridge as Jemma Simmons
- Henry Simmons as Alphonso Mackenzie
- John Hannah as Holden Radcliffe and Holden Radcliffe (Life Model Decoy)
- Natalia Cordova-Buckley as Elena "Yo-Yo" Rodriguez
- Jason O'Mara as Jeffrey Mace
- Mallory Jansen as AIDA
- Adrian Pasdar as Glenn Talbot
- Parminder Nagra as Ellen Nadeer
- Chuck McCollum as Gene Williams
- Sally Shamrell as Maria Nunez
- Mikel Miller as Capitol Police Lt.
- Ava Acres as Katya Belyakov
- Winter Ave Zoli as Eva Belyakov (stock footage)
- Derek Phillips as O'Brien (stock footage)
- Terrell Tilford as Hart (stock footage)
- Blair Underwood as Andrew Garner (stock audio)
- Jonathan Stanley as Attendant
Continuity and References to the Marvel Cinematic Universe
- Elena "Yo-Yo" Rodriguez appears.
- Jeffrey Mace appears.
- AIDA appears.
- Glenn Talbot appears
- Ellen Nadeer appears
- Katya Belyakov returns.
- The Sokovia Accords are mentioned.
- The events from "Melinda" is shown in the Framework.
- Vijay Nadeer is mentioned.
- George Talbot is mentioned.
- Nathanson is mentioned.
- Deathlok is mentioned.
- Nicole is mentioned.
- Hope Mackenzie is mentioned.
- The Superior is mentioned.
- Eva Belyakov appears in the Framework.
- Katya Belyakov appears in the Framework.
- Andrew Garner appears in the Framework.
- Senator Nadeer's office was in the "Stamford Wing". In the Marvel Comics, a battle between super powered individuals at Stamford Connecticut caused the deaths of hundreds of bystanders and was the flashpoint for the Mutant Registration Act which precipitated the Civil War, pitting heroes against heroes.