AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Returns With New Faces

When MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. returns for its second season premiere on Sept. 23, there will plenty of new faces helping to rebuild the shattered agency — or tear it right back down again!

Chief among the new allies is former XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESS star Lucy Lawless as Agent Isabelle Hartley, a veteran S.H.I.E.L.D. agent helping to rebuild the organization.
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AGENT CARTER Reporting for Duty on ABC

agentcarterFar from abandoning Marvel’s AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D., ABC is practically doubling-down on the concept by committing to Marvel’s AGENT CARTER, a series that centers on Peggy Carter, Captain America’s love interest in Captain America: The First Avenger.

Hayley Atwell will reprise her role as Peggy in the 13-episode series that will debut at midseason, allowing AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. to take a break and minimize reruns.
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Big AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Tie-In to Movie Universe? Uh, Not So Much…

SifSHIELDRemember 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…
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New S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Reporting for Duty

paxtonPerhaps looking to up the action ante on the plodding spy series, the producers of AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. are importing a veteran field agent in the form of John Garrett, to be played by genre veteran Bill Paxton. Garrett will be working with agents Ward (Brett Dalton) and May (Ming-Na Wen), and that will certainly change the dynamic.

S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producer Jed Whedon described Paxton’s character:

“We wanted to bring in a rough-and-tumble former cohort of Agent Coulson with a little bit of attitude and cigar-smoking swagger.”

Cigar-smoking? Too bad the Marvel movie universe left Dum Dum Dugan back in World War II in Captain America: The First Avenger. Paxton, a veteran of the action classic Aliens, has impeccable comic timing (see also: True Lies), so maybe he can alleviate the audience-alienating problem of AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. taking itself too damn seriously!

Look for Cpl. Hudson Agent Garrett to report for duty in late March or so.

S.H.I.E.L.D. Will Do a Crossover With New Thor Movie

thorlokiAttention, fans of MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D.! Get thee to a cinema forthwith to view Thor: The Dark World, which opens today — because the Nov. 19 episode of AoS is going to pick up on plot threads left over from the movie.

According to Entertainment Weekly, the AoS episode, called “The Well,” most likely will not feature any Thor cast members (barring a surprise cameo), but rather some “connective tissue” in the storyline.

Check out the official synopsis from ABC:

“In the aftermath of the events chronicled in the feature film Marvel’s Thor: The Dark World, Coulson and the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. pick up the pieces – one of which threatens to destroy a member of the team.”

Putting this together with what we’ve all seen in the various trailers, it looks like there will be lots of Asgardian/Elf technology expended in all the fighting, so Agent Phil Coulson’s team most likely comes across something dangerous in some wreckage while cleaning up after the battle.

With a lot of the film’s action set in Greenwich, England, it seems like a natural setup for a crossover with TORCHWOOD, doesn’t it? If only that reconstituted UK team was still in action, that is…

AGENTS OF SHIELD 1.4: “Eye Spy”

shield1The fourth bombastic episode of MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. saw our heroes pitted against a… diamond thief? Er, um… a really good diamond thief. One who stole a whole bunch of diamonds. From guys wearing red masks. On a subway. In Stockholm. Yeah, the Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division took on a jewel thief.

I know the show has a few mandates and guidelines to follow in order to air at 8 p.m. on ABC (curbs on violence, etc.), but I think the show’s producers are aiming a little too low. For a while it was hinted that the thief might have super powers, but no, she just had a camera (and a bomb) installed in her eye.
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AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. 1.3: “The Asset”

DAVID CONRAD, CHLOE BENNETFrom all appearances, this episode of MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. was meant to be a run-of-the-mill, this-is-how-we-do-it story of a regular SHIELD (it’s too much trouble to type all those periods) mission — and thus, it was a bit on the dull side. Solving a kidnapping was just the McGuffin to push Skye into fieldwork before she’s ready — and before anybody, including SHIELD, knows she can be trusted.

It also served to start sketching in a background for Mr. Stuffed Shirt, aka Agent Ward, and pushing the two most conventionally attractive people in the cast together, just as everybody watching expects. But where “The Asset” worked best was in laying the groundwork for SHIELD’s first super-powered adversary.
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