Remember all the hype about how Marvel’s AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. would be set in the same universe as the Marvel movies and we could expect events from the big and small screen to at least have an influence on each other? Well, Marvel is now backing away from that idea.
Take last week’s guest appearance on MAoS by the Lady Sif (Jaimie Alexander), a major player in Thor’s movie series. Like most people, I expected this to be a major event, not merely ratings-bait stunt casting — especially since Sif was to go up against Lorelei, the sister of the Enchantress, who is expected to be one of the baddies in the eventual Thor 3 movie.
Perhaps Enchantress might be angry about her little sister’s treatment on the TV show? Don’t hold your breath…
When Movies.com asked Kevin Feige, president, Marvel Studios, if there would be storyline connections, he replied:
“No, I wouldn’t say that. They very much have to forge their own territory, their own ground on the TV show, and where events can coincide… it’s fun to do that.”
Translation: If recognizable movie characters can goose the TV ratings, we’ll try it, but don’t expect any lasting, long-term effects.
However, while Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) is definitely dealing with the fallout from The Avengers on TV, when asked if Coulson’s tale would dictate terms to Avengers: Age of Ultron, Feige said:
“That is a good question that I probably shouldn’t answer for any number of reasons.”
So, does that mean Coulson’s TV adventures will have an influence on the Avengers sequel — hence answering the question would be a spoiler — or won’t?
This is actually an important question, because if movie continuity ignores what happens on the small screen, does that then imply that the TV show isn’t worth watching because all the episodes are just throwaway stories?
Consider Captain America: The Winter Soldier, which looks like it should have colossal ramifications for all of S.H.I.E.L.D. — but will it affect Coulson’s crew? Feige says the movie was in development well before the TV series. But…?
“They, meaning the people in charge of the show, were well aware of our plans for this movie, so fans of the movie should definitely tune in, in the coming weeks after the film is released.”
It sounds to me like the perspective Marvel now wants us to have is that the movies and the TV show are like offscreen background information for each other — stuff that might be interesting for dedicated fans to know, but not essential information for everyone. And to the extent that one will influence the other, the movies will take precedence.