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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is not about the superheroes

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After the rumours that ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ will feature a number of our favourite superheroes, director Joss Whedon reminds us that it’s all about the ordinary guys.

Ever since the highly anticipated series was picked-up by ABC, Marvel fans have wondered just which superheroes will turn up in this all-new show. But while super-powered cameos might sound like a good idea, it seems that series director Joss Whedon wants to focus on the exploits of our down-to-earth S.H.I.E.L.D. agents.

In an interview with IGN, Joss Whedon explains that ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ will be all about the folks without superpowers.

“The show is about the six people who are in the show,” he explains. “And every week we’ll meet somebody that they have to deal with. Some of those people will be very sympathetic, some of them will be evil, some will be from the Marvel canon, some will reference it – but it’s not an Easter egg hunt. It really is just about the lives of these people as they’re dealing with this super-world.”

Obviously, Marvel fans will be tempted to look out for their favourite superheroes… but the show’s producers are becoming increasingly adamant that this is not what ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ is all about. In fact, executive producer Jeffrey Bell recently quashed rumours that J. August Richards would appear as none other than Power Man himself – Luke Cage. And it seems Joss Whedon is keen to put those rumours to bed.

“You know, he’s just a guy,” he explains. “I mean, the whole point of this show is, they’re just guys. They’re not The Avengers, they’re not the fancy ones. They’re the people that got sort of hit in the blowback of this super-world. So he’s kind of an everyman. He appears to be a very fierce everyman!”

I have to admit… I don’t think Joss Whedon is being entirely truthful with us there. After all, if Marvel’s promo video is anything to go by, Richards’ character is a lot more than an ordinary everyman. Will he play Luke Cage? In my opinion, probably not… but he’s certainly not quite the average citizen either.

Are you looking forward to ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D’? Will you be eagerly awaiting the superhero cameos?

Agent Coulson

‘Agents of SHIELD’: Coulson Return NOT Explained in Premiere; New Story, No Movie Easter Eggs

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Joss Whedon’s penchant for killing characters is well known, so when Agent Phil Coulson – everyman of the Marvel movieverse – got pierced like a tissue on a paper spike in The Avengers, we all knew that, though shocking, it was also quite inevitable. Coulson’s resurrection in ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. though? Not so much.

But alongside that re-birth comes one of the more compelling questions about the new series, like: how did Coulson come back? And: how will S.H.I.E.L.D. tie in to the Marvel Universe? Now, we have some answers.

In a new interview, Clark Gregg is shedding some light on that question, what he thought about being brought back by the man who killed him and Agent Coulson’s appeal.

I kept waiting to see, are we going to shoot a version where [Loki] misses? And they didn’t, so I was really surprised to get that call and I wanted to make sure it didn’t do anything to undermine what we achieved there and when [writer-director Joss Whedon] explained the mystery and how they planned to deal with it, with Agent Coulson being around, I was very sold.

As for when we’ll find out about that burning question concerning how Coulson made his way back to the land of the living, Gregg doesn’t seem to indicate that we’ll get a clear resolution anytime soon.

He’s back. He’s thinks he knows how he’s back. We’ll have to see.

So, why bring Coulson back? What’s his value to a cinematic universe that is chock-full of superheroes and a pool of eerily similar S.H.I.E.L.D. drones from which a replacement could have come?

Agent Coulson represents the people who don’t have superpowers, the guys who actually can be killed — or at least seem to be and yet come back sometimes … Marvel has such a lock on how to do really incredibly visual affects and stunts that we’ve got stuff on our show that I just don’t think we’ve seen on TV before.

Coulson’s relatability also came up during Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. creator Joss Whedon’s address to advertisers and the press at ABC’s upfronts, where Whedon also clarified that the decision to do a S.H.I.E.L.D. show didn’t come from a place of corporate synergy, or tie-ins, and that the show would stand on its own and not merely be a repository for “Easter Eggs”.

What I loved about The Avengers became SHIELD, and there’s no better example of that than Clark Gregg, an actor who so talented that not even I could kill him.

He represented the human side of the superhero world in the Universe, and that’s why we built S.H.I.E.L.D. around him. We didn’t build it because it would work with the movies, or be an Easter Egg to hide things in, or because I grew up reading comic books; we built it because we had a story to tell about what it’s like to be an ordinary person in an increasingly extraordinary and unreal world.”

Coulsoon - Dont touch Lola

Here’s the thing with all of this talk about Coulson’s humanity and how he is a kind of bridge into this amazing world of superpowers: while that was true, it sorta went away when Marvel decided to kill him and then bring him back.

Right now, all we know is that Coulson is back. If Whedon and company want to keep the on-screen reason why a mystery, that is their prerogative, but for as long as it remains a mystery, fans will wonder whether he is a droid, some kind of immortal, another comic book-y twist, or simply a part of a major conspiracy.

Without question, some of those things threaten to sever Coulson’s “human” tether completely and the others could run the risk of alienating fans – while also making Coulson into a less likable, less trustworthy character. It might even strip away the “everyman” reputation that has been integral to the audiences’ ability to accept a fantastical world without the familiar heroes from the Marvel Universe – one that the show is, apparently, loosely connected to.

Obviously, there is a benefit to this guessing game – ABC and Marvel need this show to come out of the gate with awe-inspiring ratings, especially if it is truly going to stand alone and not exist as required viewing for movie fans. Ample buzz only helps them in that endeavor, but if fans are kept in the dark for long, one has to wonder if this might be a detriment while making irrelevant all of the good intentions behind the return of a fan favorite character.

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. premieres on ABC this fall.

Source: EW

Cage Luke

‘Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Stars And Producers Speak Up, Luke Cage is Not The Mystery Character

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ABC’s upfront presentation has already made news regarding “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” most notably that the show going to be nice. Access Hollywood and IGN caught up with actors Clark Gregg (Agent Coulson), Ming-Na wen (Agent May) and Elizabeth Henstridge (Agent Simmons), also as producer Jeffrey Bell (“Angel”). The actors were all tight-lipped regarding the series, of course, however the video is still worth watching if solely to visualize just how excited these actors are to enlist with S.H.I.E.L.D. Ming-Na’s even got her boxing equipment out!!

The real juicy bit of information comes from producer Jeffrey Bell, who addressed the rumors that J. August Richards is playing either Luke Cage or Rage.

“[J. August Richards] killed it! He’s so good. He’s so good, because we were looking for this character M– I almost said his name. It’s not the one people are talking about…”

 

“I’m going to say that’s an interesting Marvel character,” says Bell about Luke Cage, “but no. But [J. August Richards ] came in and killed it. Honestly, we were looking for this part, and we just said, ‘look, all our parts are open to all diversity.’ So the fact that we have a black dude who is awesome and it’s J, was just because he was the best actor. It wasn’t like, ‘You know who…!’”

Bell was then asked if we’ll see superpowered characters like Richards’ mystery man every week.

“J’s a guest star in it, and we talk about it like this: If you take all the Marvel movies, really only Captain America and the Hulk are the only real ‘superheroes’ in all those movies. You’ve got an alien god, but in all those movies, there’s been, like, three [superheroes]. So if we trot out a superhero every week, it would be weird. But we’re saying the world is different and things are changing, so we will be finding other people — so whether it’s science or whether it’s a result of [what happened in] New York or whether they’re from somewhere else, we’re open to everything. Whatever makes cool stories.”

Now, I’m still excited for “S.H.I.E.L.D.,” don’t get me wrong. I have faith in Joss, for sure. Everything we’ve seen so far has made me dizzy with excitement; seriously, this much “S.H.I.E.L.D.” excitement this week surely isn’t good for me. But I have a tiny bone to pick with a lot of television’s previous super shows, and these quotes make me worried that “S.H.I.E.L.D.” is going to follow suit.

That picked bone is this: because of budget restraints and the grind of producing 20+ episodes a season, television adaptations of superheroes rarely include actual comic book characters. Most weeks the heroes fight gang members, henchmen for crooked politicians or plan ol’ bullies, or original characters with weird, low-budget powers. From what I’ve heard second-hand, “Smallville” got over this towards the end of it’s run, but I remember watching “Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman” as a kid and being bummed out that there were never any actual DC characters on the show outside of the Daily Planet staff.

I trust Joss and company, so if Richards’ character is totally new for the show then… that’s fine. It won’t make the show horrible or any less of an achievement (the fact that Marvel will have a primetime, major network drama on the air for the first time in over 30 years makes this a success). But why not give fans Luke Cage or Rage? Especially since their powersets are firmly within a TV show’s budget? We already have a cast of completely new characters instead of existing S.H.I.E.L.D. officers, can’t we at least get some cool cameos, especially for characters that make sense to exist in this world? Geez, you can have human Marvel Universe characters like Stevie Hunter or Foggy Nelson on the show for all I care. That’d still be ridiculously cool.

The show will still feel like a Marvel show even if we only get a handful of actual Marvel characters per season, because Whedon’s proven that he knows the feel of the comics inside and out. But I want it to feel like a Marvel show, you know? Give us the goods.

[via Comic Book Movie and IGN]
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10 Characters We all Want to See on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D

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Now that Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has formally been picked up by abc and the first full teaser has publicly debuted, the fan community is awash in speculation, fan theories, and brainstorming about what kind of Marvel characters and storylines would possibly find their way into the show — with speculating centering on the chance that J. August Richard’s presently unnamed character may be Luke Cage or Rage of the New Warriors.

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