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In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Phil Coulson clearly shows great favor to Daisy Johnson, something noted as suspicious by the "Real S.H.I.E.L.D." faction. The T.A.H.I.T.I. treatment did introduce some specific compulsions in Coulson, and it strikes me as possible that it might have similarly affected his behavior towards Daisy, predisposing him to protect her, possibly to the point of neglecting his other duties. On the flip side of things, it's also clear that he sees himself as a father figure to her, so his extreme protectiveness might be ascribed to that, and he's incredibly protective of all of his team, to the point of risking a major diplomatic incident when Bobbi and Hunter get in trouble with Russia until they tell him to stand down, that they wish to accept their punishment.

Is there any evidence in the show, or the behind-the-scenes lore, that Coulson's actions are being motivated by the T.A.H.I.T.I. treatment rather than his own personal judgment?

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I don't recall them ever mentioning T.A.H.I.T.I. caused some sort of personality change in Coulson. It's just part of who Coulson's character is. He would have been that way before T.A.H.I.T.I and he was that way when he was brought back as a robot or whatever. He's just a fatherly figure/mentor who feels responsible for the team and he truly thinks Daisy will be a leader/superhero, because of her judgement and conscience.

I will add since @Fuzzyboots brought it up. Though he starts etching crazy symbols and begins pushing people away. I still don't think there are long term permanent personality changes resulting from T.A.H.I.T.I.

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  • One of the noted effects of T.A.H.I.T.I. is that obsessive drawing of the Kree installation that eventually leads to Daisy and Reina getting hit by the Terrigen mists, which the "other S.H.I.E.L.D." call out specifically that Coulson seems to be obsessively pursuing that alien city and that they believe he was contaminated by the blood (other people in T.A.H.I.T.I. exhibited that and other personality changes before their memory wipe).
    – FuzzyBoots
    Sep 9, 2021 at 18:23
  • I'm only in the fourth season, so I figured that any further evidence might not have come up, or that there might be a Series Bible entry along the lines of that they'd planned on a reveal, but scrapped it, where Coulson comes to realize that his actions do suggest he's being influenced, maybe with the Kree blood having tagged him as a "guardian" for the Inhuman race and/or leaders.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Sep 9, 2021 at 18:24
  • I don't consider that a personality change. It was more like an irrational calling, but once finished it didn't really change Coulson's core character traits.
    – Villan
    Sep 9, 2021 at 18:28

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