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Joss Whedon Calls S.H.I.EL.D. ‘Very Hopeful,’ True to Marvel


ABC Entertainment President Paul Lee has described the S.H.I.E.L.D. pilot as “just very Joss,” explaining last month, “You know how Joss is so high-low? And he’s able to be intense and epic and suddenly funny and silly? He’s just got that ability to be super-entertaining and sort of super-educated.” But how would Whedon himself characterize the highly anticipated Marvel drama?

“I’m excited about the show because it’s a very hopeful show,” he told TVLine over the weekend. “It’s not about murder, and it’s not about crime, and it’s not people looking into their own belly buttons. It’s about people who are trying to help each other, and that’s one of the things I loved about comic books. They had costumes and the villains were cool [but] they stood for something, and I like doing a show that does that. […] We’re trying very hard to be true to [Marvel’s] ethos and also to the structure of their universe. So it is definitely a Marvel show.”

Targeted for ABC’s fall lineup, S.H.I.E.L.D. centers on the global espionage and law-enforcement agency that’s helped to provide the connective tissue between the films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Whedon directed the pilot, which he co-wrote with his brother Jed Whedon and Jed’s wife Maurissa Tancharoen. The project, which stars Clark Gregg as fan-favorite Agent Coulson, Ming-Na as Agent Melina May, Elizabeth Henstridge as Agent Gemma Simmons, Iain De Caestecker as Agent Leo Fitz, Brett Dalton as Agent Grant Ward and Chloe Bennett as Skye. However, as we reported last month, the roster may not end there.

Cobie Smulders, who played S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Maria Hill in The Avengers, indicated there are “definite talks” for her to reprise that role in the television series, although it likely would be only a cameo. Whedon confirmed as much, but cautioned Smulders’ schedule “will permit very little” involvement, “but if we can get a hold of her any time, we will.”

Filming on the S.H.I.E.L.D. pilot wrapped last week, which means we probably won’t have to wait long to learn of the project’s fate.


  • Shaun

    Looking forward to this. But I’m puzzled by a few things. Is Coulson coming back from the dead, or is this show taking place before the events of “The Avengers”? I’m assuming he’s coming back, but does anyone know? I’m curious as to how this is going to work. Is this going to be ordinary human SHIELD agents going up against superhuman badguys, aliens, etc? Can we look forward to cameos from members of the Avengers, maybe even just off-screen? Anyway, it sounds like fun. 

  • David

    The show is 100% confirmed as taking place after The Avengers. Also, we never really saw a body.

  • Jugga Lord

    This has already been answered. SHIELD take place _after_ Avengers. Whedon confirmed long ago that this was the plan from the start. Coulson wasn’t dead. We just don’t know the specifics yet. Maybe Fury played the Avengers so that they’d band together against Loki. Maybe the Coulson who “died” was a LMD. Maybe he did die and, but was quickly revived. This is Marvel we’re talking about. Death is anything but permanent.

  • Perry Constantine

    The Coulson that appears in the show could be an LMD that thinks he’s the real deal. Could make for some really interesting stories and dynamics.

  • Keith Clardy

    What about 

  • Keith Clardy

    I know that “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” is over two years away, but if this series is successful and lasts at least two seasons, I wonder if we’ll see appearances by Emily VanCamp’s Sharon Carter at some point. Unlike Smulders, VanCamp is already the star of a popular ABC series and so it shouldn’t for hard her to be involved at some point, even if only a cameo or two.

  • darthtigris

    The ONLY factual statement is this:  We don’t know yet!

    Gonna have to wait until closer to the show’s (inevitable) green light and premiere hype before we know anything concrete.  Still maybe not then, as they try to keep things close to the vest.  I seriously doubt that, though, as I’m expecting a full pilot screening SDCC.

  • demoncat_4

    can ‘t wait to see if even if now we will only have maria pop up quickly and then due to cobies busy work load. not to mention see if any marvel characters also pop up to cross paths with shield. plus if maybe since we can’t have maria long term also an cameo from time to time by nick fury too.