"Out of the Past" is the fourth episode of the seventh season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D..
It was just another average morning on July 22, 1955, when Agent Phil Coulson realized the importance of that day in the S.H.I.E.L.D. history books. With a chip on his shoulder and a genre-bending glitch in his system, he'd set into motion a chain of events that would hopefully preserve the timeline as we know it and ensure those pesky chronicoms get the ending they deserve. What could go wrong?
- Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson LMD
- Ming-Na Wen as Melinda May
- Chloe Bennet as Daisy Johnson/Quake
- Iain De Caestecker as Leo Fitz
- Elizabeth Henstridge as Jemma Simmons
- Henry Simmons as Alphonso Mackenzie
- Natalia Cordova-Buckley as Elena "Yo-Yo" Rodriguez
- Jeff Ward as Deke Shaw
- Joel Stoffer as Enoch
- Tobias Jelinek as Luke
- Neal Bledsoe as Wilfred Malick
- Larry Clarke as Tom
- Enver Gjokaj as Daniel Sousa
- Philip Alexander as Joe
- Stephanie Drapeau as Lana
- Paul Rogan as Concierge
- Tom Simmons as Cop
- Frank Scozzari as Train Conductor (uncredited)
- Unknown Actor as Niles Lindmore (uncredited)
- Darren Barnet as Freddy Malick (archive footage; uncredited)
- John Bishop as Frank (archive footage; uncredited)
Continuity and References to the Marvel Cinematic Universe
- Daniel Sousa appears.
- Enoch appears.
- Luke appears.
- Wilfred Malick appears.
- Howard Stark is mentioned.
- Peggy Carter is mentioned.
- Chester Phillips is mentioned.
- Edwin Jarvis is mentioned.
- Ana Jarvis is mentioned.
- Strategic Scientific Reserve is mentioned.
- Avengers are mentioned.
- I.C.E.R. appears.
- A History of S.H.I.E.L.D appears.
- Wall of Valor appears.
- Healing Pod is mentioned.
- Howard Stark's Estate is mentioned.
- S.H.I.E.L.D. Academy is mentioned.
- Temple of the Forgotten is mentioned.
- Chronyca-2 is mentioned.
- Fear Dimension is mentioned.
- Infiltration into Area 51 from "Alien Commies from the Future!" is mentioned.
- Ambush at Hell's Harbor from "Know Your Onions" is mentioned.
- World War II is mentioned.
- Izel's Campaign is mentioned.
- Battle at the Temple of the Forgotten]] from "New Life" is mentioned.
- The episode seems to be stylized as hard-boiled detective novel, or a moving picture from the film noir genre which was popular in the early part of twentieth century. By definition, film noir (Noir is French for Black) is defined as a style or genre of cinematographic film marked by a mood of pessimism, fatalism, and menace. The term was originally applied (by a group of French critics) to American thriller or detective films made in the period 1944-54 and to the work of directors such as Orson Welles, Fritz Lang, and Billy Wilder.
- Enoch essentially served as a switchboard between the agents on the ground and the Zephyr. He seemed to have used an acoustic coupler to do so. Acoustic coupler were early modems to transmit information over phone lines. The handset was placed on the coupler, and it would convert electric signals from the computing device into an acoustic signal or sound for the phone to send over the network.
- The episode was presented entirely in black-and-white except for the final scene. The plot device that makes this effect diegetic (the telling of a story by a narrator who summarizes events in the plot and comments on the conversations, thoughts, etc., of the characters. the sphere or world in which these narrated events and other elements occur) actually, is Coulson experiencing some "technical difficulties" after last episode's EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse). His experiencing the black and white vision and the inner monologue along with the plot is a nod to the films noir of the 40s and 50s. (The previous ones' themes were bootleggers and gangster stories in the depression era and communist and alien invasion in the Cold War era)
- The song that plays at the end is "No More Mr. Nice Guy" by Alice Cooper. When asked "When are we ?" the answer is 1973, when this song debuted.
- This episode includes an epitaph for Joseph Teague.
- This episode marks Alphonso Mackenzie's 100th appearance on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D..