A key member of the "Real S.H.I.E.L.D.", Robert Gonzales, like colleagues such as Anne Weaver, believes that the rot which released Hydra was endemic to the "cloak and dagger" world which Director Fury's vision and version of the organization sustained. He sees Coulson as stuck in the same rut, and was seemingly one of those who orchestrated the infiltration of the official iteration by Bobbi Morse and Mack, sound intelligence being a prerequisite to a successful campaign. In Scars, Robert was killed by Jiaying when she petrified him using Terrigen Crystals.
Early History Edit
According to Coulson, Gonzales was recruited to join S.H.I.E.L.D. at a young age, but left the organization for awhile after his wife died. He later rejoined S.H.I.E.L.D. and became commander of The Iliad three years later and was considered to be one of the best commanders S.H.I.E.L.D. ever had.
Gonzales was aboard The Iliad when Hydra "came out of the shadows;" Hydra agents were taking over the ship and killing any S.H.I.E.L.D. agents that stood in their way. Agents Hartley and Morse were sent by Director Fury to rescue Gonzales and they found him with an injured leg in the ship's conference room.
Mack and Izzy were going to take Gonzales off the ship while Bobbi stayed behind to complete her second mission which was to insert a disc into the ships server core that would simultaneously detonate every weapon on the ship thereby sinking it. However, Gonzales refused to leave without Bobbi and together the group fought their way to the ship's server core. When they arrived, however, Mack and Izzy had second thoughts about sinking the ship; even though they were outnumbered by Hydra, Gonzales and the others fought with the remaining S.H.I.E.L.D. agents still aboard the ship and, against all odds, successfully took the ship back from Hydra.
Gonzales the went on to form the "real" S.H.E.L.D., making himself part of its' board of directors along with Agents Weaver and Tomas. Coulson spent months looking for Gonzales, but when he didn't find him Coulson assumed Gonzales was dead, when really Gonzales didn't want Coulson to find him.
Gonzales sent Agents Izzy, Bobbi, and Mack undercover in Coulson's version of S.H.I.E.L.D. to gather information on Coulson and see if he could be trusted.
Love in the Time of Hydra Edit
- Main article: Love in the Time of Hydra
After Hunter confronts Mack about the secret him and Bobbi are keeping, Mack has no choice, but to abduct Hunter before he can warn Coulson and the others.
Mack takes Hunter aboard The Iliad, which is now the headquarters of the "real" S.H.I.E.L.D., and takes him to a meeting with Gonzales and the other directors. Gonzales explains to Hunter how Coulson is leading S.H.I.E.L.D. down the same dark path Fury led it down and the GH.325 drug has compromised Coulson's judgment. Furthermore, Gonzales holds Coulson personally responsible for the deaths of Agents Izzy and Trip and Raina's transformation.
After the meeting, Gonzales decides to keep Hunter on the ship until the "Coulson situation" is resolved, but is later informed that Hunters escaped and has stolen one of the ship's mini-submarines. Despite the risk Hunter could expose her, Bobbi volunteers to go back undercover to steal the Toolbox.
One Door Closes Edit
- Main article: One Door Closes
Gonzales and his team release a dendrotoxin gas into the air vents of the Playground thereby knocking out everybody inside the base. Gonzales and his team then easily capture the base and imprison Fitz, Simmons, and Coulson.
Gonzales talks to Coulson in his office, with Coulson in handcuffs, and tries to convince him to join the "real" S.H.I.E.L.D. and unlock Fury's Toolbox for them, but Coulson refuses. Gonzales then comments how Weaver will open the Toolbox for them and then May barges into the room and shoots Gonzales with an ICER and then helps Coulson escape the base.
- Main article: Afterlife
Gonzales tells Bobbi they need to open Fury's Toolbox to learn Coulson's secrets and make sure he can be trusted. He then asks Fitz and Simmons what progress they've made with unlocking it, but so far they haven't made any progress and they comment how as soon as Gonzales lets them they're both leaving.
Gonzales next interviews May, who is imprisoned inside Vault D, he tells May that he's adding both Coulson and Skye's names to the Index and that if she works with them than they can take Coulson alive. However, May refuses to help him and warns Gonzales that Coulson is the one man you can't "put down."
Gonzales takes May aboard The Iliad and offers May a seat on the "real" S.H.I.E.L.D.'s board of directors as they're going to catch Coulson eventually and when they do he'll need an advocate.
The Dirty Half Dozen Edit
- Main article: The Dirty Half Dozen
Coulson explains to Gonzales how he's discovered a Hydra base in the arctic where they've been experimenting on powered people, but Gonzales says he can't trust him. Coulson offers to open the Toolbox for him if he helps him take down their common enemy, Hydra. Coulson then explains his plan is to send in a small infiltration unit into the base to rescue the people Hydra is holding prisoner and to disable the base’s missile defense system so a large S.H.I.E.L.D. strike force can destroy the base.
Back at the base, Coulson explains his plan to the rest of board of directors who then take a vote on whether they should or shouldn't go through with Coulson's plan. Agents Weaver and Oliver vote against Coulson's plan as they believe it's too risky while Coulson, Gonzales, and May all vote for the plan thus they go through with Coulson's plan.
May, later, contacts Gonzales to tell him their mission was a success and they're leaving the base with the prisoners. Gonzales then tells Weaver that their jets can fire on the base as soon as they're in position. Coulson then keeps his promise and unlocks the Toolbox for him.
- Main article: Scars
In Avengers: Age of Ultron, it's revealed that "theta protocol", which was one of the secrets Coulson was keeping, was a secret helicarrier that Fury used to safely evacuate the city Ultron was going to destroy. Gonzales now trusts Coulson as if hadn't been for his "theta protocol" Ultron would've killed thousands of people.
At the beginning of the episode, Coulson proposes that their two organizations come together as one S.H.I.E.L.D. with Coulson serving as director and Gonzales as his adviser, similar to how the World Council watched over Fury in the old S.H.I.E.L.D.
After Gordon teleports aboard The Iliad, Weaver is able to track him to Afterlife and Gonzales suggests that they launch a preemptive strike against the inhumans. However, Coulson says they should meet with Jiaying first to see if she's friend or foe. Gonzales suggests that he be the one to go as Coulson is too close to Skye for him to be objective.
Gonzales meets with Jiaying at Afterlife and, as a gift, Gonzales gives Jiaying back the necklace Dr. Whitehall stole from her that S.H.I.E.L.D. recovered after Coulson killed him. Jiaying then gives Gonzales a gift in return, a terrigen crystal, however, Jiaying breaks the crystal thereby releasing the mist. As soon as the mist touches Gonzales, his body turns to stone and Jiaying then takes his gun and shoots herself with it. Jiaying then announces S.H.I.E.L.D. has betrayed them and she killed Gonzales in self-defense.
According to Phil Coulson, Gonzales was someone who dedicated his life to S.H.I.E.L.D. This was proven by his actions to make sure the organization stands tall no matter the action. Combined with his tactical skills, this makes him a great asset to S.H.I.E.L.D.
However, Gonzales was quite hypocritical and short-sighted; he blames Nick Fury and Project Insight entirely for the fall of S.H.I.E.L.D., somewhat forgetting that HYDRA's infiltration was what caused it in the first place. He also points out how S.H.I.E.L.D. should not stand divided, despite his own refusal to cooperate with Coulson. Noticeably, Gonzales constantly refers to Skye as an "it" due to her new-found status as an Inhuman. Despite believing himself to be objective about Skye, he blamed her for injuring several agents, even though she was only defending herself from Calderon. He also calls Coulson untrustworthy for acting like a fugitive, when he himself made Coulson a fugitive in the first place. Also, while he stated that he believed in the transparency of S.H.I.E.L.D., Gonzales himself had secrets and had practiced deception, as evidenced by his keeping the existence of the cargo on his ship a secret as well as putting moles in the Playground to spy on Coulson and gather intelligence. Even after agreeing to work with Coulson to attack HYDRA, he pulled Bobbi Morse from the mission because he didn't want to risk any of his people, viewing Coulson and his team as an acceptable sacrifice, describing it as "for the greater good".
- Although never stated, it would seem plausible that his birth name was Roberto, Anglicized as Robert.