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What If Joss Whedon Made A Marvel TV Show? Some Possibilities…

That Joss Whedon has been signed by Disney/Marvel to write and direct Avengers 2 shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone, given the outrageous success of the first one. But that he’s also going to create a “Marvel-based” series for ABC is the far more interesting news to come from Disney today – and the kind of thing that’s likely to drive speculation for quite some time to come.

Looking at it objectively, it only makes sense that Whedon will work with both ABC and Marvel Television to create a new show; all of the pieces have been out there for some time, whether it’s Whedon’s repeated commentary that he finds that television may be his preferred medium, or reports that ABC was looking for a new television series from Marvel set in Avengers continuity. GIven all of those ingredients, the surprise isn’t that Whedon is creating the new show, but that it actually feels like a surprise at all, And yet, it does; maybe we all expected that Whedon would go off and continue to come up with all-new, all-Whedon projects with his newfound commercial powers, instead.

And yet: Joss Whedon is creating a new Marvel television show! This can only be a good thing, as long as we get the Whedon behind Buffy, Angel and Firefly and not the Whedon who created the confused, uncertain Dollhouse. Presuming, of course, we actually get Whedon at all. “Creating,” after all, doesn’t necessarily guarantee that he’ll be involved on any kind of ongoing basis with the show, and considering that he’ll be busy doing Avengers 2 – something that, hopefully, won’t be created on such a tight deadline as the first movie – he certainly won’t have time to be the series’ showrunner. When Jeph Loeb took on the role of heading up Marvel Television, he mentioned a lot of names in passing when talking about the kind of talent that he’d be interested in pursuing for shows and showrunning positions, and there were definitely some Whedon-connected people in there (Some connected to Whedon and Loeb’s shared past on the developed-but-never-aired Buffy animated series); should we expect to see some familiar names from Buffy et al coming back to head up this new series?

Speaking of familiar names: Who, exactly, could head up the show in terms of lead character? It would make sense considering Whedon’s history to have a female lead, and there have been rumors of ABC looking for a more grounded concept from Marvel for practical reasons (Both budgetary and the need to create something that’ll appeal to ABC’s skewing-older audience). And yet, the network had already knocked back AKA Jessica Jones, Melissa Rosenberg’s adaptation of the Alias series, something that would appear to be exactly the kind of show that they’re looking for. It’s possible that Whedon could end up creating something made to order, featuring all-new characters, which would be a boon to Marvel in two ways; firstly, it’d offer them the chance to advertise the show as being entirely “from the man behind The Avengers,” and secondly, it adds something new to the Marvel IP farm, leaving all the existing toys available for movies or development as additional series.

(About that: With Whedon onboard, there’s almost no way that this won’t be a priority for both Marvel and ABC to rush to air as soon as possible. Assuming that rumors about this new show being set in the movie continuity are true, what if anything does that do to the long-developed, out-of-movie-continuity Hulk series that ABC was reportedly considering from Guillermo Del Toro and David Eick? Then again, Del Toro did say that he was waiting for a writer to become available. What if that’s Whedon…?)

It’s hard to tell how far away we are from the debut of this series – Would Marvel rather Whedon work on the show for a Fall 2013 debut, or Avengers 2 for its inevitable 2015 release date? – but it’s very possible that all of this is as new in reality as it is in announcement, and absolutely no details have been agreed upon just yet. There are a lot of exciting possibilities in the idea of Whedon bringing his top form to television on Marvel’s behalf, and I’m sure that we’re going to imagine every single one between now and whenever concrete details begin to seep out into the world.


  • bmiddleton2

    I would bet that Del Toro’s meeting with Marvel was a “Can we make this Hulk show in continuity?” meeting.

  • Elfap

    Why not Runaways? He wrote it at one point (Marvel, both comics and films, have been very good to him) They are known to be in LA, away from the majority of the Marvel U, strong female characters and it works great for a TV format.

    Get the creator Brian K. Vaughan to write the pilot and you’re golden.

  • Kevinmbarry44

    My thought exactly.

  • JTRobin

    Avengers Academy.  Would be a natural “bridge” to the small screen, a potential follow up to the Avengers 2 movie, and with a Smallville teen vibe to it, and some Marverl B-listers as faculty, you’d have a show appealing to a potentially wide audience…

  • Xaos

    SHIELD seems like a pretty natural, practical fit. They already have most of the sets and CG models that they’d need for the Helicarrier, but could focus on agents in the field and not having super powered leads would presumably be less of a strain on the FX budget,

  • Rollo Tomassi

    Marvel just required the Spider-Man TV rights from Sony. A teenage Peter Parker in high school with a supporting cast of Gwen, Harry, Flash, Liz, etc etc. It’d be like 90210/Glee/O.C. Teen drama set in the Marvel Movieverse. Marvel’s version of Smallville.
    And then slowly expand out the “Street Level” heroes from there. Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Prowler, perhaps even Matt Murdock and Frank Castle eventually.

  • Elmeaux

    I’m thinking something along the lines of Marvels. A man on the street look at the Marvel U. Shield can be part of it, lesser heroes could cameo, it would allow them to go in a lot of different directions.

  • Wiendigo

    Damage Control. It’s the sort of thing right up  Whedon’s alley.

  • Al

    Spider-woman.  A secret agent with mommy issues and a love/hate relationship with her agency… it’ll play like Alias, but with super powers.

  • Will_cory


  • Javiz450

    Um, it’s probably going to be Damage Control. Makes more sense, they come in after the heroes save the day and deal with the aftermath.

  • max

    The Dollhouse found its footing about mid-way through the first season.  People tend to forget how hit or miss Angel was in its early days.

  • Ohmstar

    Brilliant. I think that Runaways would work much better on the small screen than it would on big screen. If given a legitimate chance (i.e. not cancelled before it even starts), Runaways could make a fantastic finite series.

  • Lyle

    Damage Control could be a lot of fun. I think Runaways could have too many special effects, and I think they are trying to make a movie around it. I wonder if he will attach himself to one of the two projects that Marvel had announced they are working on not too long ago: Mockingbird or Cloak and Dagger. Mockingbird could work, since her original idea was that she was a SHIELD agent who found illegal stuff going on within the agency, so she created a super hero identity to fight it. Cloak and Dagger seems less likely, since it does not really have to have any connections with the Avengers movie universe. Still, you have a teenage drama with superpowers, and that in itself could be fun for the creator of Buffy.

  • Praetor

    Secret Avengers series – starring more ‘civilian friendly’, less bombastic superheroes like Luke Cage, Shiang Chi, Iron First, Daredevil (licence rights pending), Doc Strange, Mockingbird, Vision,  Black Panther, Wasp etc etc etc 

    Using “Avenger” in the title would directly tie it to the film series, whilst “Secret” would allow it to be more espionage focused, and therefore smaller in scope/budget compared to a widescreen blockbuster.

  • Richard Casey

    The Whedon who made Dollhouse is THE SAME Whedon who made Buffy, Angel and Firefly. The difference? The studio execs didn’t understand what it was they’d bought until it was too late, forcing him to change the show in ways that resulted in Dollshouse being the confused mess of ideas it turned out to be.

  • nevilleross

    I would like to see a Saturday morning block (on ABC) consisting of Power Pack, The Runaways, Avengers Academy and Avengers Next: Heroes Of Tomorrow. I bet that it will be better than what’s on now.