|“||I know what you're doing Agent Morse, and it's not going to work. Grant's already told me everything. Everything. About his abusive family, about John Garrett, about having to kill Victoria Hand. But in the end, he overcame his family and the pain Garrett put him through. He remade himself. That's why I love him, and why no matter what he does, I will always stand with Ward.||„|
|~ Palamas declaring her newfound allegiance to Grant Ward.|
Kara Lynn Palamas, also more commonly known as Agent 33, was a supporting antagonist in Season Two of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., serving as a supporting antagonist in the first half and a major antagonist in the second half.
She was a former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent who was brainwashed by HYDRA leader, Daniel Whitehall, and following his death, she became the lover and accomplice of Grant Ward while also seeking revenge against the ones responsible for her predicament.
She was primarily portrayed by Maya Stojan, who later portrayed Meredith Regan, Ming-Na Wen while disguising as Melinda May, and Chloe Bennet while briefly disguising as Skye.
Kidnapped and Brainwashed
Prior to being captured by Whitehall, Kara Palamas joined S.H.I.E.L.D. and became a loyal agent while also gaining the nickname "Agent 33". During this time, she met Bobbi Morse who developed a strong respect for her. Following HYDRA's infiltration, Kara hid out in a safehouse, where unfortunately, an undercover Bobbi Morse gave away the location of the safehouse and unintentionally sold her out. Thus, Sunil Bakshi dragged her out and prepped her for Whitehall.
Upon being brought to Whitehall, Kara was subjected to the Faustus method and, although she fought hard to resist the effects and also escape, she eventually succumbed and surrendered to his power, thus becoming blindly loyal to HYDRA and also as an assassin and secretary to Whitehall.
Working for Whitehall
Now under the influence of the Faustus method, Agent 33 assisted Sunil Bakshi in the mission to steal the painting marked with the Words of Creation. After May found the apartment where they were hiding out in, 33 and Bakshi subdued her before using a nano-mask to assume her identity. Now disguised as May, 33 travelled to the Bus and tricked Coulson that Glenn Talbot, whom Bakshi was disguised as, was honest when asking for assistance. Tricking Coulson into the hotel room for an ambush, 33 planted a virus on the Bus in an attempt to destroy it. However, after arriving there, 33 was compromised and fought Coulson, only for the real May to intervene. The two of them then fought throughout the hotel room, ending with May electrocuting her in the face, permanently scarring the mask to her face.
Weeks later, 33 was sent to collect Raina. However, after a fierce fight with Skye, Lance Hunter knocked her out and they escaped. 33 then told Whitehall of this and the tracker that Coulson placed in Raina. Later, 33 notified Whitehall of Ward's mission and how he took Skye hostage and let the plane live. Whitehall then ordered her to have it shot down.
The next day in Puerto Rico, 33 oversees Ward, Calvin Zabo and Skye try and get the upper-hand on HYDRA, only to fail. 33 then exchanged banter with a captive Ward regarding her disfigured face. After S.H.I.E.L.D. raided the building, 33 enters the shootout and tries to kill Coulson and Zabo, only to find that Whitehall was killed. Having lost any sense of what her objectives were with Whitehall now dead, 33 turned to a wounded Ward and informed him of his death. Ward then offered to help her and they escape the building together.
Following the battle at Puerto Rico, 33 spent weeks nursing Ward back to full health and developed a mutual attraction towards him. The two of them kidnapped the inventor of the nano-mask and forced him to try and fix the mask on her face. Although he was able to repair it and give it a small update, he was unable to remove it. 33 also felt insecure about her true scarred face, not wanting to see it. Afterwards, they kill him so he wouldn't talk. After Ward left to get ready for the "next phase", wanting to have a relationship with him, 33 disguised herself as Skye and tried to seduce him, only for him to reject it due to having lost his feelings for Skye when she shot and left him for dead.
Although he considered to have a possible life together with the real her, she angrily claimed that Whitehall destroyed that. She was then comforted by Ward, who explained to her about what his abusive family and John Garrett made him into, and how he found a way to move past it. Inspired by this, the two of them broke into a military base led by Talbot and broke out Sunil Bakshi, while also demonstrating how her brainwash programming stopped working. Back at their hotel room, Bakshi was successfully subjected to the Faustus method, and also explained to them about 33's civilian life and what Bobbi did.
A few weeks later, the two of them developed a relationship and continued to hide from S.H.I.E.L.D. in Mexico, while Kara also found an old photo of her to conceal her scarred face. Kara was then ambushed and taken hostage by Coulson and Deathlok to lure in Ward, where they needed his help in finding Wolfgang von Strucker and Dr. List, in exchange for Ward being mind-wiped and given a new start. Although she was hesitant about Ward being mind-wiped, the two of them agreed and brought Bakshi to them so they can find List. During a meeting between List and Bakshi, the three of them alongside Hunter and Leo Fitz have a stand-off.
After resolving the disagreement, they follow the two of them to a location where they were looking for a teleporter. A firefight broke out between S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA, and Palamas was able to save Coulson's life with her quick reactions. During the battle Lance Hunter was shot in the shoulder and Palamas rescued him; with the threats incoming, Coulson ordered Ward, Hunter and Palamas to escape while he surrendered to the other branch of S.H.I.E.L.D. which was hunting them.
Upon returning to the Playground base, the two of them were given escorts whose orders were to kill them if they tried anything clever. Ward told Palamas that he would be joining Coulson on their mission to attack List's HYDRA base and he wanted her to stay at the Playground to try and reconnect with her past after Whitehall had wiped her memories. Although she protested, wishing to join Ward, he managed to convince her to stay behind. Kara then met Bobbi Morse and the two of them talked their history and about later Ward. After the agents returned, Kara noticed how Ward didn't come back with them. Knowing that the plan is to fool S.H.I.E.L.D. so they can capture Bobbi, she pretended to be disheartened.
Kidnapping Bobbi Morse
Remembering that Bobbi Morse was the one indirectly responsible for her experience, Kara stuck to the plan and slowly began to gain her trust. She was shown to be happy after hearing from Jemma Simmons how the brainwash programming was fully removed from her. Later, she killed the agent watching her before posing as May once more and tricking Bobbi into leaving the base. During the Quinjet flight, the two of them exchanged notes regarding Bobbi's relationship with Hunter. Upon arriving in Spain, Kara revealed herself and the two of them fought, and while Bobbi knocked her out, Ward ambushed and kidnapped her.
Wanting Bobbi to succumb to the same amount of pain Whitehall put her through, Kara and Ward patiently tortured her with needles in her fingers alongside with a parasitic and anaesthetic. However, Bobbi failed to surrender to the pain and tried to overpower them in a fist fight, only for Ward to dislocate her knee. Knowing that Bobbi doesn't regret what she did (as her actions saved twenty-four S.H.I.E.L.D. agents), Ward and Kara decided to have her watch as a rigged sniper rifle shoots someone in front of her. Though neither one tells her whom that someone is, they are hoping that it is Hunter.
After S.H.I.E.L.D. arrives, the two of them crossed off the team. This is partly to make sure that Hunter is the only one available to rescue her so that he can get shot in the process, rather than some other innocent agent. However, May also tricks Kara into disguising herself as the former, which also tricked Ward, who was eager to kill May out of revenge for defeating him months before, into accidentally killing her, leaving Ward heartbroken.
Ward would later blame S.H.I.E.L.D. for Kara's death and every pain that he's endured, and begins his campaign for revenge by taking over the remnants of HYDRA as its new leader. Months later, Ward would have Werner von Strucker try to kill May's ex-husband, Andrew Garner, feeling that it would make the two of them even. Although this failed, he was able to torture a captured Garner regarding his condition. He then later killed Coulson's girlfriend, Rosalind Price, right in front of him, mocking him about how he now knows how it feels. Unfortunately for Ward, this set in motion a chain of events that ultimately led to his own death at Coulson's hands.
- Agent 33's monologue to Bobbi Morse in the two-part Season 2 finale (in which she says, "I will always stand with Ward") is a reference to a the hashtag "#StandWithWard", which was created by a group of supporters known as "Ward Warriors" who supported Grant Ward following the reveal of his allegiance to HYDRA. In this particular campaign, the fans in question were shocked and disappointed by this reveal and vowed to support the character no matter what, with many of them hoping that he would turn back into a hero and rejoin the team. With Ward's death in the following season, however, that chance was made impossible.