Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is the television show that could. The show, canonically part of the Marvel cinematic universe, was originally helmed by the great Joss Whedon and stars Agent Phil Coulson, played by Clark Gregg, after his untimely death in the first Avengers movie (comic books and their adaptations treat death the same way most video games treat death: a minor setback at worst). The show has lasted far longer than anybody could have predicted and achieved enough success to completely pack the Madison Square Garden Theater. The panel was exactly what I had hoped: enjoyable and spoilerific. And it is my pleasure to share some of what I witnessed.
What can I say about the fifth season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? Well, for those of you who didn’t watch the season four finale, the titular agents will take their adventures into space, because space is awesome. Sadly, the panelists (all the main cast members) were tight-lipped about the season’s overarching plot, but they were kind enough to show the audience the first twenty minutes of the first episode, and experiencing a world premier before anyone else is as awesome as it sounds.
The episode sets the tone of the season rather well and introduces several mysteries. The agents are teleported on to a spaceship infested by aliens called “Roaches” by the ship’s crewmembers; the episode has a very Alien feel to it, thanks to the grimy, claustrophobic corridors and the alien menace that mostly sticks to the shadows. At first, I thought the Roaches were going to be the classic Marvel alien species known as the Brood, which would have been awesome, but instead the Roaches are something else entirely. However, even though the Roaches are dangerous, they aren’t why the agents were teleported on to the ship. Apparently, an even greater menace threatens humanity (the Roaches are just an immediate threat), and the agents have to stop it. As for who or what this threat is, I’m personally hoping for either the Shi’ar or Skrulls.
The panel has me hooked and excited for season five of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the first two episodes of which will air Friday, December 1st. If that’s not exciting enough, fans will be pleased to hear that Gregg is directing one of season five’s episodes. I look forward to seeing how he does in the director’s chair. I also look forward the Avengers/Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. crossover fans have been pining for, but right now that’s a pipe dream. Plus, given the direction of the show, the agents will meet the Guardians of the Galaxy or the Nova Corps before they ever join forces with the Avengers.