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Five Ways to Inject More Marvel Into ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’

shield logoFollowing ABC’s literally explosive mid-season finale for Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., executive producer Jeffrey Bell promised that the show’s future will feature more mainstay elements of the Marvel Universe. For a show rooted in arguably the most successful big screen superhero adaptations of all time, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been remarkably restrained in exploiting its ties to the Marvel cinematic and comic book universes. Instead, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has focused on building a strong foundation of original characters and concepts – ones that they’re starting to build on.

“The other thing that seems to be happening,” said Bell in an interview with CBR, “just based on the fact that what felt like standalone were in fact for us setting up a lot of different pieces of the puzzle, I think you’re going to feel more momentum from the stories, episode to episode.” Bell also revealed that this storytelling change will strengthen the show’s ties to Marvel.

“I would say, in general, I think fans will experience the episodes as being a bit more ‘Marvel,’” said Bell. “I mean that on several levels. I think we’re always looking to find characters either from the Marvel movie universe or the comic universe that fans would recognize. I think bringing the tension and suspense of the movies is something that we’re looking to do as our characters become more confident.”

With that in mind, here are five things Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. can do to feel even more Marvel as they head into the second half of season one.

Ongoing Plotlines
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s episodic nature has been a big hurdle for Marvel fans to get past, and that’s because Marvel’s comics are serialized, continuous super hero epics. The phrase “to be continued” hadn’t appeared with such regularity in a comic book series until Stan Lee started using it every month in nearly every Marvel comic in the 1960s. One of Marvel’s many selling points in those early days was that every comic was part of a larger story, one that you dare not miss any part of. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has told ten standalone stories, with no obvious connective tissue between them. With the midseason finale, “The Bridge,” it looks like the show has a “To Be Continued” title card ready to roll.

agents of shield clark gregg

Underdogs
Whereas DC Comics made a name for itself with larger than life powerhouses like Superman and Wonder Woman, Marvel found unprecedented success with underdog heroes like Spider-Man and the Fantastic Four. They were regularly outclassed by their villains and oftentimes let their personal problems get in the way. So far, the agents have been a little too good at their jobs. They have yet to face a threat strong enough to survive the end of an episode, and they still have the might of a giant, infinitely funded peacekeeping force backing them. What can’t they win against?

Thankfully, and we’re now heading into spoiler territory for “The Bridge,” that seems to be changing. At the episode’s end, the team has been thoroughly schooled by the antagonistic Centipede organization, which has Coulson in their custody. Without their leader holding them together, we might just see some of Marvel’s trademark teammate infighting happen, hopefully along with the team splitting from their all-powerful S.H.I.E.L.D. bosses.

More Marvel Characters
S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s kept the number of Marvel Comics cameos to a minimum, with just a handful (Nick Fury, Maria Hill, Jasper Sitwell, Victoria Hand) appearing in the first ten episodes. While this was wisely done to keep the focus on the series’ five all-new original characters, it’s time to level up. The Marvel films feel like Marvel films because they have Marvel characters in them; weeks pass without a single Marvel Comics-originated character appearing on S.H.I.E.L.D. In fact, when characters like Mike Peterson and Akela Amadour are used instead of Marvel Comics analogues like Rage and Misty Knight, it feels forced. When it comes to comic book adaptations, nothing will be able to stop fans from searching for Easter eggs – and fans get mad when their baskets stay empty.

Explore the Universe
Just like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has shied away from using Marvel Comics characters, they’ve also been reluctant to show us just what the rest of the Marvel Universe looks like on the small screen. We did get an episode built entirely around Thor’s Norse mythology, and they did introduce one of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s trademark flying cars, but the rest of the episodes have taken us to real world locations and used original ideas. We’re getting Centipede instead of A.I.M., and the series has been reluctant to take us to Marvel-only locales like Wakanda, Madripoor or Transia. There are all sorts of artifacts and locations that make the Marvel Universe feel like the Marvel Universe, and S.H.I.E.L.D. should use some of them.

agents of shield-the well

Realism
While this may sound odd coming after a paragraph imploring the series to use more far-fetched and fictional locations and doodads, but the importance of the realism Marvel brought to superhero comics cannot be denied. This is the comic book company that said that a masked superhero like Spider-Man couldn’t cash checks because the bank couldn’t verify his identity. Agents of S.H.I.E.LD. is a show starring a formerly homeless computer hacker with cover girl ready clothes and makeup. It’s a show set primarily in an airplane that houses six adults full-time – yet the plane is pristine and void of all the messiness that befalls every Real World house. It’s time for this show to start looking lived in.

S.H.I.E.L.D. has started pairing their characters off in interesting ways and exploring different dynamics, like Skye and Simmons’ friendship, as well as May and Ward’s friendship with benefits. Now it’s time for these relationships to get even more real, and it’s time for them to get real complicated. Judging by the midseason finale, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is close to becoming the Marvel Universe show fans wanted it to be from the beginning. Here’s hoping 2014 gives us a more Marvel-ous S.H.I.E.L.D.

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Comments

  • Hypestyles

    There definitely needs to be more sex on the show. Start with the scots woman. Give her some sexy outfits to wear on undercover missions.

  • Andy E. Nystrom

    Agreed about the lack of Marvel characters but there has been one other in the first ten, and in a substantial role: Franklin Hall, who will likely reappear as Graviton. And while this isn’t a character, we have seen a Roxxon gas station. I still want more but Hall in particular is worth noting.

  • The Rising Tide

    They announced 2 new agents joining the team in episode 14 or so. Lets hope they up the scales and introduce more Shield agents from the comics. Even mentioning agent 13 or agent Sam Wilson aka Falcon would be a nice setup for Captain america: TWS. Episode 10 showed signs of improvement, keep it up ABC

  • Chuck777

    We now have a firm foundation to build on, so I hope Marvel actually starts using this show as a vehicle for expanding the Cinematic Universe.

  • Josh Parra

    I stopped watching around episode six, but if it has continued in a similar vein then all the fanservice in the world isn’t going to make up for the uninteresting, charmless characters. They can start by axing Ward and Skye, and making May more than just a tough girl with a mysterious past. Not hating on the actors, but they are not being helped by that writing. Oof.

  • Scratch89

  • Guest

    She’s not Scootish.

  • Rishi Joe Sanu

    She is not Scottish. Also…..Why???!!!

  • Blame Me

    They should take a page out of Arrows play book and bring in costumed heroes and adapted storylines from the comics. They also need to 86 the dull people (which is 2/3rds of the cast) They should replace them with comic lore SHIELD agents like G.W. Bridge, Bobbi Morse, Jimmy Woo etc.

  • Jay

    I agree with everything except the more Marvel characters point. Rage and Misty Knight would have not fit the backstory of those characters, so it’s ridiculous to suggest otherwise. Including both those characters would require massive changes to their origins, abilities, and personalities. Rage in particular doesnt share a whole lot in common with Mike Peterson, aside from obvious thing.

  • Tad Sivana

    I liked seeing the Roxxon sign in the next to last episode, so that’s a step in the right direction. I hope they’ll continue to develop the storyline about Skye’s parentage (I think she’s the daughter of The Fixer, one of the earliest SHIELD foes), and also delve into Coulson’s LMD or whatever status. It wouldn’t hurt to see some more SHIELD characters, either. Why hasn’t Nathan Fillion been on as Clay Quartermain yet?

  • Jozef Kadlub

    ” ten standalone episode with no obvious connective tissue between them”
    Sky’s ties to the rising tied were featured in 1,2 and 5 which led to her probation bracelet with has been featured in all episodes after 5 and her parents storyline which has been featured in 7 and 10
    The centipede stuff which has been featured in 1,4,5 and 10
    The Coulson finding out how he came has been going on for a while
    Featured in 1,6,7,and 10
    Ward and May romance featured in 8,9, and 10
    Mike Peterson in 1 and 10
    No connective tissue my ass

  • andrew11

    Agreed. It was this awful cast of characters that has really kept me from watching past the first few episodes.

  • sackman11

    Interesting dilemma for Marvel as compared to DC.

    Marvel has tried tying their entrance into television by linking it with their highly successful movie universe. However, they are so overly concerned with making a wrong step with any of their super-hero characters, that they refuse to allow any of them to actually appear on the SHIELD show. Even lower-tier heroes and villains that will likely never see the light of day in theaters aren’t given life on television in the SHIELD show. This absolutely kills the show and almost any interest in it that fans of the movie universe have.

    DC, while it does not have the well-integrated cross-over movie universe that Marvel sports, does TV differently. It’s not constraining itself at all with concerns over involving primary or secondary characters or villains in their television world. Flash origins being tied to the Green Arrow universe? No problem. Deathstroke, Black Canary and Green Arrow origins being tied together in a TV stew that makes relative sense but has no regard for 4 decades of comic continuity? Full speed ahead. Very different approach.

    Which approach is better? Marvel is being more careful with their stable of characters, but it’s to the detriment of creating entertaining television. No question that it’s the right business decision, as movies make much more than TV. However, it dooms SHIELD to being a milk-toast version of what it should be. If they don’t go beyond making vague references to the Marvel universe, it’ll be over within a year.

  • Kelly

    How about they watch a season of Arrow for some inspiration, because that show is kicking all kinds of ass, including S.H.I.E.L.D.

  • Nissus

    If you mean the Scottish guy, I agree (lol). But the girl is English.

  • todd

    That is a great way to put it. When it comes to TV and animation DC knows what they are doing, except for Teen Titans Go lol. If Smallville could throw a bunch of superheroes into the mix, some being unknown to anyone who doesn’t read comics, Marvel could do the same as well. Characters like Luke Cage, Alias, Mocking Bird, and even Spider-Woman would work in Agents of Shield. If DC can do things like make Doomsday have a human form on Smallville or Deathstroke being part of Green Arrows origin on Arrow then Marvel doesn’t need to be so careful. Although I am sure Marvel thinks that any superhero that appears in Agents of Shield will have to be in Avengers, which isn’t true, but Marvel probably feels that way and they probably don’t want to have to deal with fans asking for all those characters too.

  • Sean

    Make the plane more lived in? WTH. These aren’t frat boys. They’re Special Agents. The only one that might make any kind of mess would be Skye but after living in a van, I’m sure she’s learned that every nook and cranny matters.

  • Chuck777

    So the few hundred people who know who those characters are can lord it over everyone else?

  • Chibi RAWR

    Arrow ep 1-10 in season one did not start out with Flash Superpower guys on drugs Ninjas and Slade as Deathstroke etc . It started out with a big huge teenage love triangle soap opera, a lot more plot holes, and as for Arrow his motivate felt like a rehashed version of Batman’s except worst, He was just killing random thugs on the list and ones he found on his own. No over arching plot nor did the flashbacks tie it together or even fit in the context of said ep. however over 20 + eps this was touched upon and developed up A LOT MORE.

    There is a big difference between Arrow on its 34th ep vs its 10th ep.

    Also Arrow and AOS are nothing alike. Arrow is a show with 100 times more teenage styled romance melodrama akin to Smallville, 100 times more pretty boys who show their 6 packs a lot more, 100 times more big boobie girls with revealing clothing, 100 times more making out scenes, 100 times more people dying violently, and it took 30 eps to get to the heavy comic booky weird science fiction part, meanwhile AOS was doing it since ep 1

  • Chuck777

    They don’t want to front load this show and make it Agents of SHIELD and random hero X every week.

    Luke Cage is getting his own show. Mocking Bird is likely being held back for a possible Avengers/Hawkeye movie. Spider-Woman might fall under the purview of Sony (who is rumored to have the live action TV show rights to Spider-Man).

    Marvel is playing for the long game here. They likely do not want to reboot their cinematic universe any time soon. With that in mind, they do not want to tie their hands with bad writing/concept/actor.

    DC has freer hands because nothing is related. Arrow can screw up what ever it wants because it only affects Arrow, not a billion dollar movie franchise.

  • Chibi RAWR

    SHIELD is not about superheroes and supervillians. SHIELD is about SHIELD. Arrow is a stand alone while AOS isn’t. Arrow is just what Smallville and that failed Wonderwoman show were. Stand alone live action series. Flash GREEN Arrow Black Canary WITH HER META HUMAN powers were in Smallville. However, those 3 characters were not in ep 1-10. It took 30+ eps to build them up. AOS just started. We don’t know what happen in the future just like we didn’t know what would happen in the MCU movies for the future. Now rumors of InHumans is out there and Ant Man is happening for real. It’s only 10 eps in season 1. Patience dude lol. They made it clear everything so far will tie into a bigger picture and it’s obvious it is if you keep on watching AOS. Dr. Hall is still alive. From a writer’s view point, showing him alive like that is a big slap in the face of i will be used again in the future.

    Right now, it just left off in a two part ep. Yes the Bridge was two parts. That was the first part. Second comes out next year. Based on the promo, Victoria hand is back and Couslon’s death is revealed, and based on interviews the people who are making the show said a new character that deals with superpower people like on the Index joins the team and she is female and knows the “old” Coulson better than everyone else on the team + season 1 foremost was meant to lead way into Winter Soldier.

  • MTo

    I think bringing in more of the greater Marvel universe would help. Why isn’t the secret org they’re going against a modern day Hydra? Why can’t they discover an artifact the alludes to the Kree or Skrulls being on Earth? Why can’t they encounter an Inhuman? Because of the shared cinematic universe, it’s hard to introduce certain characters, but you can always hint at their existence. Namor or Black Panther may be better reserved for a movie introducing them, but that doesn’t mean that the SHIELD characters can’t have a run-in with some Atlanteans or Wakandans.

  • Chibi RAWR

    JW said it is not a LMD in response to the online theory

  • Chuck777

    HYDRA is likely reserved for Cap films.

    The Kree and the Skrulls are probably reserved for movies, especially considering how a TV show’s low budget could ruin the look of aliens. The Chitauri are probably too expensive to use regularly, although I wouldn’t mind seeing more of their influence on the world. Some of the Shi’ar species could work well (Babylon 5 proved peacock hairdos are both cheap and visually effective).

    With the recent Inhuman push in the comics, my bet is that the guys overseeing the MCU are probably thinking of ways to make them the mutant analogs that can be used in films.

    Atlanteans could work but they have the same problem as the Kree and Skrulls.

    Wakanda could easily work, especially if you only mention Black Panther (or not at all).

  • Chibi RAWR

    go watch porn. the MCU is not about sex

  • Chibi RAWR

    Yes one is a female who knows about Coulson from the good old days and she is useful for knowing about problems that the Index cause. that = obvious exploration of the Index on a bigger scale now they have somebody who can get down and dirty with it more than the others. rememer Quick Sliver and Scarlet Witch are in Avengers 2. their powers need to be explained without the mutant gene part. Index can easily make that happen like it did to scorch, who was a spin on the real character from canon Earth 616 and yes that mutant was asian and had pyrpower. check out the wiki. Mike Peterson is not dead btw

  • dark owl

    I like this show, it really puts me to sleep. I’ll take Arrow over this boring piece of crap anyday…

  • jadedragon216

    Considering they had a random Asgardian, I highly doubt HYDRA is off limits, maybe certain HYDRA characters are, but I don’t see why they can’t use the org itself.

    The Kree and Skrulls basically look human, just get some blue and green body paints and some prosthetics for the ears and chin. Not to mention Skrulls shapeshift, so a quick cg flash of their true form now and then is easy enough. There are also human-toned Kree. Outside of Namor, I haven’t seen an Atlantean in a while so correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t they basically blue humans with some Atlantean markings and elf ears. There’s been a number of Sci-Fi shows that have regular cast members in some body paint and light prosthetics, so I don’t see why they can’t do it for a few episodes.

    As for the Shi’ar, aren’t they off-limits since they’re so heavily connected to the X-Men.

  • Herostratus356

    The lowest-rated episode of SHIELD still got more viewers than the highest-rated episode of Arrow. SHIELD is still superior to Arrow in the only way that matters.

  • sackman11

    As a comic, SHIELD was anchored by a strong lead character (Nick Fury), a good supporting cast (Dum Dum Duggan) and multiple appearances by Captain America. It lasted roughly 40 issues in Strange Tales and 15 under it’s own title. Even with a legend like Jack Kirby and a visionary like Steranko involved, it didn’t survive very long.

    SHIELD being about SHIELD alone and not involving the broader Marvel universe and at least some of its characters won’t last long. I’d really like it to last, but it needs more than a Colson LMD to entertain. And it needs it soon.

  • dregj

    this article had me right up until you used the non word “oftentimes”
    oh dear

  • JayBezz

    That’s the point.. they made this whole backstory for Akela Amadour when they should have used a Misty Knight backstory. In the end Akela Amadour is the bad storytelling

  • Brian H

    I agree. It was obvious that the characters were intended to be Luke Cage and Storm. But since they are spoken for, they are probably intended to be stand-ins for Night Thrasher and Photon/Capt. Marvel/Monica Rambeau.

  • khackett

    Let’s be honest here. This is a network television show. You start to make it too clever, and it doesn’t get the ratings. With that in mind, it’s perfect as it is; Not too clever, not too run-of-the-mill. It’s just pleasant enough to watch. That’s all too often the formula for success unless it’s on cable.

  • Jay

    That’s the problem. The only thing that Akela and Misty have in common is that they are both black. Misty was police officer, not a SHIELD agent. Akela might be bad storytelling, but transplanting the name Misty Knight would not make it better. That characters has no similarities to Misty Knight other than her skin color. If they used a Misty Knight backstory, then it would be a whole different backstory. You can ask for introduction for Misty Knight on the show, but don’t pretend you can just switch one black character for another black character.

  • Jay

    Mike Peterson has nothing in common with Luke Cage. Night Thrasher, or Rage. Rage, the name used in the article, is a little boy who transform into a large man. The only thing Akela and Mike have in common with the characters they are supposed to be stand-ins for is they are black.

    How could Rage be a little boy who is a father like Mike Peterson. Akela has a completely different origin and powerset than Storm and Photon. Black people/characters are not interchangeable as this story suggests.

  • dswynne

    You do know that the cinematic Marvel-verse and the non-cinematic Marvel-verse are two different settings, right? Not every element from one venue to another is directly transferable, but, more importantly, the producers of AoS may be taken orders directly from Marvel Studios, as to what is permissible. Ergo, some things will change (like Ultron’s origins for the next Avengers film). Also, and this is a theory of mine, I would not have been surprised that the character Luke Cage was suppose to be introduced in AoS, but that plan got nixed at the last minute by higher-ups, in order to set up the Marvel Knights live-action film line. Silly to me, but, whatever…

  • bryan David Woodbury

    Here is a idea for the 3rd season. Who is the Oracle? Here is a great idea.

    Make it Moondragon! Making her a powerful alien telepath that had fallen through the portal in Avengers escaping Thanos. She was caught by Centipede super soldier agents that were at the battle of NY collecting alien tech and has been manipulated by Centipede (turns out to be the Masters of Evil). You mention Thanos again a few times through the series as Moondragon is rescued & becomes part of the team. Maybe you give her a mohawk or keep her bald and hope an actress would do that for a role. The guy who was in jail and was the Tinkerer, in it for the tech and works for Baron Zemo, head of Masters of Evil. There is your Cap 2 villain, against Zemo and maybe Mr. Hyde? Have the HUGE finale having the team track down Klaw to Wakanda mining the Vibranium without the Kings consent. 2 part finale, T’Challa is introduced allies with Sheild and goes to confront Klaw who has alien weaponry and super soldiers. This is where you see him suit up and just take the whole base out with the team behind him. Last shot is Coulson signalling Fury. He just says, “Sir, I found you an Avenger”

  • Dalarsco

    I’m hoping for Carol Danvers so we can get some development of her as a pure human before she gets her powers in her own movie.

  • Jay

    There’s a different between change the origin for a character for the sake of streamlining or whatnot, and having two characters that are similar only in the color of their skin. Mike Peterson has a completely different origin that Luke Cage, and Luke Cage doesn’t have a son. It’s clear it was never Luke Cage since Luke Cage is getting his own netflix series. You realize it takes months and possible years of development to get a television show through, right?

    Any fan who thinks Mike Peterson was supposed to be Luke Cage needs to check themselves a bit, because they think black characters are a little too interchangeable.

  • cynic000

    Yeah, that was a stupid suggestion. Nobody except the writer of this article wants to see the inside of the Bus looking like a pig sty.

    Although it isn’t shown, that C-17 Globemaster III is a military aircraft maintained and cleaned regularly by SHIELD ground crews whenever it lands at a secure airfield. The service crews would never allow it to become dirty or “lived-in” because they would scrub it from top to bottom routinely. The plane often carries contaminated cargo or persons, so allowing it to get filthy would pose an extreme hazard to the occupants. No one will be hanging wet undies off the railings or leaving plates and dishes around the place because those things would become safety hazards during flight operations.

    Seriously, where is the :eyeroll: smiley when you need it?

  • spoon

    COME ON guys! Don’t you see the pattern here? When the AoS people says things like “… fans will experience the episodes as being a bit more Marvel’”. That means just more vague references to the marvel comics, the odd 5 second cameo and so on, nothing with any impact. Any small plot twist related to a major marvel character could influence the marvel movies, this is why they have such loose connection to the marvel universe. And no reboot of the franchise will fix that.

    Bell says: “I mean that on several levels.”
    I’m guessing this is about the standardisation of the VFX, colour scheme etc., Marvel is planning for their TV and movies.

    As soon as Whedon etc. give these small hints/promises about AoS this always backfires (they really need to think about how to market this show), fans read in all sorts of things they hope will happen in the show and rage in disappointment when it’s not happening.

    At best, we can hope for promotion stuff for the movies. They could e.g. use AoS episodes as a kind of promotional tool when “Winter soldier” is released, then we could see a little bit cooler stuff.

  • Brian H

    “Any fan who thinks Mike Peterson was supposed to be Luke Cage needs to check themselves a bit, because they think black characters are a little too interchangeable.”

    Agreed 100%. The same goes for the writer of this article.

  • somethingrandom

    correct me if im wrong. but in one of the episodes at the end the one guy fell into that portal thing and by the way it worked out. it looked like they were creating “the spot”. also they should introduce marc spector A.K.A moon knight. and instead of him being a mercenary. or cia member. he could be a agent of shield

  • toon48

    perhaps the little boy Mike Peterson is the father of is Rage…………………….

  • GillBates

    Yeah i don’t like the idea some people have around here that ” Well this character on the show is black so obviously it’s was supposed to be…” idea.

    Plus as MINOR, insignificant and non-important as he was the Mike Peterson character did appear in comic pages years ago.

    http://www.comicvine.com/michael-peterson/4005-92680/

  • sowat

    I get they might not want to do too much with existing characters since that disturbs what they can or can’t use on film. I doubt directors want the TV show dictating what they can’t do…example, if the show introduces Ms. Marvel, it dictates how Ms. Marvel potentially appears in the movies because it’s the same Universe.

    Other than that my suggestions are:

    - Use existing Cinematic characters to guest appear where it makes sense. More and more people are finding out about Coulson being alive, so bring in team ups with people he trusts, like Black Widow. Show how fun it could be for her to compete against May and Ward. Do the same with Hawkeye. Have War Machine spotlight an episode. Make good consistent use of Victoria Hand, Maria Hill and Jasper Sitwell. Characters set to appear in the movies, like Falcon and later Ant-Man, would have a great spring board on the show as agents before they get their powers or big moment.

    - Use SHIELD Agents from the comics. They don’t need to use just the super heroes, there’s plenty of SHIELD Agents from the comics who may never appear in the movies that could get some spotlight on the show. What if Coulson’s team ended up on a mission opposite GW Bridge’s team? An forced alliance saves the day. I can understand they might not want to use Jessica Drew, but bring in a lower profile character like Eric O’Grady. Use Daisy Johnson, Clay Quartermain and Contessa.

    - Feel more like SHIELD. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I thought a show called Agents of SHIELD would have SHIELD Agents who dress and look like SHIELD Agents and are generally immersed in what it is to be a part of SHIELD. They’re not going to have Sam Jackson regularly appear on the show so I guess they have to write around that, having this “elite” team solves that…but when you see SHIELD and the Hellicarrier in Avengers you know it’s a big organization and force. In the show the focus is on this little team, and it all seems so small and less important compared to what we were already given. Shows on SyFy have a larger, more epic scope than this with the same size cast.

    - Villains…I’m not sure why we have Centipede introduced in the Cinematic U when Hydra is already a thing. In the comics Hydra has many divisions and many leaders…true to it’s namesake, the creature with many heads. Centipede should have been a reemerged Hydra on a quest to make super soldiers, which makes perfect sense since Hydra was introduced in CA:TFA. IM3 introduced AIM to the MCU. The villains were already there for this show and for some reason they completely went around them as Hydra gets a passing reference in episode 2.

    - Villains… while I’m sure they don’t want to use the large names like Kang who could be saved for the movies, there’s plant of lesser villains to battle. What about Zodiac or the Super Adaptoid? Taskmaster would be a great recurring villain, especially if they use the fact that he trains other villains.

  • Kelly

    Actually, it’s not. Arrow is the superior show and word of mouth is what’s carrying it over SHIELD which continues to shed viewers.
    Arrow will be on its 5th season after SHIELD gets canceled next season.

  • dswynne

    That’s an erroneous assumption on your part. Your statement borders on being prejudice for assuming that it is the responsibility of the fan to differentiate black characters, when, based upon the advertisement of the episode that introduced the Mike Peterson character, there was indications that Luke Cage would make his first appearance on AoS.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuMcTJEQpKQ

    It was not until the actual episode had aired that the clarification was made. And my other point was that it is likely that the producers of AoS would have introduced Luke Cage early on, had it not been the news that the Marvel Knights line was going full bore, in which an actual Luke Cage is to be introduced. So, if you are going to criticize anyone, criticize Marvel Studios for the confusion…among other things.

  • Herostratus356

    Both shows have been on downward trends. SHIELD still has a LONG way to fall before it matches the highest-rated episode of Arrow (the pilot). If Arrow can get a 2nd season then SHIELD definitely will.

  • Jay

    I wasn’t talking about fans who thought prior to the pilot that J. August Richards was Luke Cage. While that turned out not to be true, continuing to say that after the pilot was shown on TV is just wrong. And the speculating was pretty bad, especially considering we had about, what, 5 seconds with the character? And so many people were sure it was Luke Cage?

    Also the idea that Luke Cage was nixed from the pilot is also bad speculating, at best. Setting aside the fact that Marvel was probably in talks with Netflix for sometime, you have to consider the fact that Mike Peterson shares no similarities to Luke Cage other than the generic super strength power and enhanced durability, which, literally hundreds of other characters.

    Luke Cage did not get his start with an offshoot of Extremis. Mike Peterson was not an ex-con. J. August Richards has the wrong build for Luke Cage. Luke Cage never had a son. And Luke Cage has never been affiliated with SHIELD, so there is no reason to suspect he would have made an appearance on the show. The only time he ever was involved with SHIELD is when they forced him to attack Latveria. But that’s it. So your idea that the producers would have introduced him early on without higher up interference is also incorrect.

    Marvel Studios deserves no blame. After the pilot aired, everyone who thought it was going to be Luke Cage should have just admitted they were wrong and moved on. They never said it was going to be Luke Cage. They even deconfirmed way back in May 2013 (on this very site, CBR):
    http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=45510

    So this notion that Marvel higher-up changed it was wrong. I thought it might be Nick Fury Jr (which makes more sense, considering he is actually an agent of SHIELD in the comics), but I admitted I was wrong after watching the pilot and moved on. I suggest anyone barking up the Luke Cage/Rage tree do the same.

  • Brian H

    Wow. If my comments contributed to the direction this has been going then “I apologize if my comments have offended anyone.”
    But color me surprised if no one realizes that I was being snarky. Rather than directly bash the writer and express offense that in 2013 the article has a “we all look alike” vibe, I just threw out a obviously ridiculous comment..
    People, one of my suggestions was STORM. I guess I should have claimed they were ripping off Wise Son and Agent 355 from Milestone and Vertigo, respectively.
    This has seriously brought back flashbacks of the time some old man told me that I reminded him of Al Roker when I was bagging his groceries. We were both fat, black, and bald, but I was taller, at least 50 years younger, and several shades lighter. If he would have said George Foreman, I would have still been offended, but less perplexed.

  • JCCFP

    MAOS has shed more than half the viewers since the pilot episode. Arrow has actually increased its ratings this season. The problem comes in when you attempt to compare viewer numbers across different networks. Arrow, in terms of ratings at the CW, is a smash hit with a much smaller budget. MAOS, in terms of ABC ratings, is a solid returner. Last week’s episode garnered 5.92 million viewers. You might say “That’s pretty good, right?” When you consider the fact it was up against NCIS, which drew in 18.84 million viewers, you’d have to say no. In fact, it was beaten by the Biggest Loser, too.

    I have no doubt the series will be renewed, though.

  • Ed Johnson

    The films are great, and I was looking forward to this show. After watching the first couple of episodes, I discovered it had bad writing, bad acting, convoluted plot lines, and over the top special effects.

  • Katja

    Misty Knight and Luke Cage don’t really have that much in common with the characters used in the show, though. They could introduce Misty as a heroic police officer who becomes a recurring character or is recruited to SHIELD because she shows how capable she is. And Luke could be introduced via a cameo since he’s getting his own show.

    How about some of the superheroes who are closely connected to SHIELD like Mockingbird, whose introduction to the MCU would have been painfully easy since Simmons’ backstory seems to be partially based off of her and we’ve already seen AIM.

    Spider-Woman, Quake, Monica Chang, the Contessa would work as well. And they could bring Victoria and Maria back. More Sitwell as well. Sharon Carter could guest star. An episode set partially in the past with Peggy doing work that leads to the plot of the episode in the present.

    Use a splinter cell of AIM who decided to branch off into other things. Introduce the concept of a Scientist Supreme. HYDRA still being active.

  • percane

    skrulls are under Fox’s control (fantastic four) which is why they went with chitauri in the avengers. inhumans are also likely linked to the FF as far as rights go.

    captain america is disney/marvel produced, so there is no reason hydra can’t be used in the show. hydra actually SHOULD be used, and i wouldn’t be surprised if eventually centipede is shown to be an offshoot/smokescreen for hydra. OR, given how technologically advanced they are, maybe they’ll turn out to be kree. that would be good, AND they could use that to introduce captain mar-vell and carol danvers

  • percane

    elf ears, and maybe webbing between fingers/toes

  • Hammer

    Let’s go back a bit… I was a HUGE fan of Marvel television shows Spider-Man, Incredible Hulk & Wonder Woman as a kid and I had big hopes for Marvel’s venture back into Television… ..But… From the very 1st Episode it was evident, this would not be good. I, typically, blame the Director when the writing and acting is this terrible, but, I think this time we have to go right after the Producers… If I was in charge, Jeffrey Bell would get his walking papers along with a serious tongue lashing in the writer’s room. It’s great they are looking to improve the show, and realize, I watch this garbage each week, but let me tell you… it is hard to do. I really want this to be good, but it’s just so “Dated” – shall we say… It feels like the trash they served up in 80′s or 90′s… Television and series have changed, go watch some AMC and get back to me Disney!

  • letsfightinglove

    Too little too late

  • dswynne

    If you say so. I’m just making my case based upon how I read the situation, given the fact that a lot of fans had thought that Mike Peterson was going to be Luke Cage, based upon his initial appearance, vis-a-vis the coming attractions ad for AoS. Your stance on this comes after the fact, and all I am saying is that it is unfair to assume that the casual fan would be so prejudicial that they would mistake one character from another, based upon skin color, when it was assumed that AoS would use existing characters for the show. That aspect is the fault of Marvel Studios, and given that the studio is going to change the origin of Ultron for the cinematic world, I’m inclined to believe that the confusion is on THEM, and not on the fans.

    But, whatever. Moving forward, I do hope to see good things coming out of AoS, with the introduction of Victoria Hand.

  • Jay

    yeah my bad. i thought that it was maybe what you meant, but I still gave the full response.

  • Jay

    To tell you the truth, the blame goes more towards writers and articles like this, who confuse the fans into believing such crap. The press should recognize their own biases before spreading it into the fanbase. Considering it was reported on this site that he wasn’t Luke Cage, it’s disingenuous to say what this writer has states.

    My stance comes from hearing people complain for months despite the answer being right there from the words of Jeffrey Bell in May 2013. What could have Marvel Studios done beside say flat out say he wasnt Luke Cage (which they did)?If they had cast Nicholas Brendan (as development suggests) instead of J. August Richards, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. People should always take ownership of their actions. J. August Richards doesn’t look like Luke Cage.

    I said that people need to check themselves. I didn’t say anything about prejudice or anything. I’m sure there was no malice in most fans’ speculating, but it still was based on a very faulty idea.

    I don’t think the show needs more Marvel characters to succeed. It’s more important that we care about the main cast than the appearance of Misty Knight.

  • Sean

    Wonder Woman is DC.

  • JayBezz

    This is its own part of the multiverse. The idea that Misty Knight need the same backstory is a moot point. Marvel Movie-verse should have more leeway than our 616.