Didn’t get enough super hero in your diet this summer? Don’t fret, this week the Joss Whedon produced “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. premiered. I was marginally excited for this new show. I’ve enjoyed the onslaught of Marvel movies the past few years and I think they are generally well written with a good production value. This show seemed like more of the same with some Whedon flavor layered on top.
The premier started by showing a random act of bravery from a hooded hero saving a woman from a burning building. I’m not giving the writers points for originality on that one. We’re also introduced to super hero groupie Skye. She looks to continue the tradition of super attractive half Chinese girls in primetime super hero shows. She’s a member of the Anonymous-like truth group The Rising Tide. I think the whole lets make a thinly veiled commentary on government secrets a bit played out by now, but I suppose it works for a hacker character. Cobie Smulders makes a guest appearance next tying the movie world with the tv world in the absolute cheapest way possible, I guess Sam Jackson would have been too much to ask for but was the logical choice for the character expounding S.H.I.E.L.D.’s mission in this post Battle of New York world. Overall I thought it seemed like a solid cast, although I was expecting some badassery from the women in the show being a Whedon produced joint, but didn’t get a lot of that in that premier.
The actual plot of the first episode revolved around that random hero in the beginning actually being infected with Extremis, the super hero serum that made the bad guy and Pepper Potts all red glowey in IronMan 3. The team is feeling each other out while on their first mission to secure the hooded hero so he can be “contained”. They are led by Agent Coulson who apparently didn’t really die in the Avengers movie, or did he? We are left with some unanswered questions for the show to milk the entire season. Outside of the Extremis we have a lot of name dropping from the Marvel universe and allusions to the past movies. During the commercials we see ads for Thor 2: The Dark World. There is almost an assumption if you’re watching this show you’ve seen all of these lead up movies and are totally onboard with what Marvel is trying to do. Its probably not a bad assumption with the billions of dollars these movies have made in the past 10 years but for me it felt a little forced and I wasn’t getting that same I feel smart vibe when you notice a hint in a Marvel movie. Maybe thats not what they were going for but I really hope the show tries to become its own thing.
Which leads to my last point. I don’t know if this show can stand on its own. Are the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. people we really want to watch every week? Part of the fun of Heroes was it was its own universe with a new story, that quickly went downhill but this show didn’t have quite the same punch at the beginning that Heroes had. I hope I’m wrong because I’m picking this show for one of the new shows I’m watching this Fall and I’ll stick with it for awhile. Show me more Disney, exploding man in a hoodie isn’t going to cut it.