Joss Whedon is coming back to the small screen with ABC’s official announcement that they are bringing Marvel and Joss’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to television this fall. This go-ahead from the network comes as no surprise since the success of the Marvel verse on the big screen and the blockbuster box office of not just The Avengers, but all the Marvel adaptations to the big screen.
The Official press release says:
Clark Gregg reprises his role of Agent Phil Coulson from Marvel’s feature films as he assembles a small, highly select group of Agents from the worldwide law-enforcement organization known as S.H.I.E.L.D. Together they investigate the new, the strange, and the unknown across the globe, protecting the ordinary from the extraordinary. Coulson’s team consists of Agent Grant Ward (Brett Dalton), highly trained in combat and espionage, Agent Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen) expert pilot and martial artist, Agent Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker); brilliant engineer and Agent Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) genius bio-chemist. Joining them on their journey into mystery is new recruit and computer hacker Skye (Chloe Bennet).
From Executive Producers Joss Whedon (“Marvel’s The Avengers,” ”Buffy the Vampire Slayer”); Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen, “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” pilot co-writers (“Dollhouse,” “Dr.Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog”); Jeffrey Bell (“Angel,” “Alias”); and Jeph Loeb (“Smallville,” “Lost,” “Heroes”) comes Marvel’s first TV series. “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is produced by ABC Studios and Marvel Television.
No doubt this will be bittersweet news to Whedon considering his love/hate relationship with television. Out of all his small screen shows, only Buffy the Vampire Slayer went the distance and lasted a full seven seasons. While Angel (the Buffy spin-off series) made it to five; barely.
His other two shows, Firefly and Dollhouse were beset with votes of no confidence by the cable networks who aired the shows. Firefly folded before the first season finished after only eleven of the shows had aired. Dollhouse then faced a short future when during the first season executives insisted that Joss “wrap it up” in the second season.
Whedon, who has a track record of delivering television shows that build an almost rabid fan-base, will have hopefully proven to the television producers and executives that he has the midas touch when it comes to the small screen given his success rate not only on television but on the big screen.
Hopefully having an already built-in fan-base for the Marvel verse and its characters, he won’t face the same type of problems with the current network.
Joss is a veteran in the entertainment industry with a sheet of screen credits for writing, directing and producing as long as it is impressive. With the added bonus of the popular Clark Gregg as agent Phil Coulson and the possibility of having guest appearances from the Whedon stable of fan favourites, this looks like an almost guaranteed success.
But with Joss’s score of two for two in the small world of TV it will be understandable if he doesn’t do cartwheels of joy over the news. I’m sure that his enthusiasm will be tempered with a lot of cynism based on his past dealings with the fickle networks.
By Michael Smith