‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Star Says Coulson Explanation is Worth the Wait

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Agents of SHIELD Ratings Dropping Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Star Says Coulson Explanation is Worth the Wait

While the diehard Marvel fans have rallied around Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., everyone banking on the ABC series’ success knows that some work is needed to keep viewers tuning in – and hopefully win back those who’ve left already. ¬†Few points have been more divisive than the mystery of Agent Coulson’s resurrection – and just how slowly the show’s writers have been addressing it.

A mystery is useful in hooking viewers, especially the millions who lined up to see The Avengers, but the lack of any answers has clearly worn thin. According to star Clark Gregg, the second half of the show’s debut season will face that issue head on. First, by answering the question: what exactly happened to Agent Coulson?

Everyone who witnessed Coulson’s death at the hands of Loki (Tom Hiddleston) knew that if Joss Whedon and his team of writers were making the Marvel mainstay the star of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., they must have a darn good explanation for why he’s still alive and kicking. Whedon maintained that the question would be answered, but even now, all that’s been provided are vague teases and a mysterious link to Tahiti (we hear it’s a magical place).

agents of shield episode 6 Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Star Says Coulson Explanation is Worth the Wait

That growing impatience among fans is something that Gregg admits to understanding, and explained in an interview with Zap2It that the mystery of his return being solved won’t just be the climax of the season, but a launching point for all that comes afterwards:

“People have been patient in really wanting to know the true nature of the secrets. … We’re going to get a big fat window at the real truth, and it’s going to be very, very surprising. When I read the sequence, I just stopped and put the script down and went ‘Wow. That was worth waiting for.’”

Gregg’s reaction isn’t entirely surprising, as producer Jed Whedon has promised that the writing team is doing their best to make the reveal surprising, if nothing else – a task made difficult by the hordes of online theorists. So if the answer to Coulson’s escape from death is enough to make the actor’s wait worthwhile, hopefully fans will feel the same way.

Exactly how many fans there will be by the time that happens remains to be seen, as a tie-in episode with Thor: The Dark World, finding a unique voice for the series, and promising more Marvel connections in the future have all been used to help slow the declining ratings. But there’s nothing that will grab headlines and eyeballs like a full-blown reveal of just what happened to Phil Coulson.

agents of shield season 1 mid season finale coulson 2 Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Star Says Coulson Explanation is Worth the Wait

But Gregg explains that the revealed secret won’t be simply checking off a box on a list of nagging questions, but setting the stage for the storyline which brings the show’s first season to a head:

“The way our team has kind of turned the back half of this season into a reveal that uses the mystery of Coulson’s death not just as a standalone reveal but as an integral part of the bigger reveal, which is that this organization Centipede, run by this person the Clairvoyant, has been part of almost everything we’ve done and connects on a deep level to everything going forward. [Centipede] is determined to destroy SHIELD and, to Coulson’s chagrin, has some of the same questions about SHIELD that Coulson himself is starting to evolve.”

“The fact that they’ve already managed to kind of make the reveal of what Coulson’s doing alive [be] the one thing that the Clairvoyant wants is just part of the way the back half of this season is going to be — more exciting and more satisfying than the first half of this season, where so much work had to be done to kind of set up this world of these people and this team, and all these separate pieces get kind of woven together.”

There’s no question that Gregg is determined to play the company man for Marvel, even as Coulson’s loyalty to S.H.I.E.L.D.’s methods is wavering – a plot point that Gregg claims is similarly integral to his character’s arc in the coming episodes. But at this point, most viewers will likely hold off on granting the benefit of the doubt.

agents of shield episode 8 the well team 570x294 Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Star Says Coulson Explanation is Worth the Wait

The showrunners have a lot of work ahead of them, but if the long-awaited answers truly are worth the wait (and truly avoid the most obvious explanations), then they’re off to a good start.

Reinforcements are also on the way in the form of a new supervillain, two new S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, and a potential crossover with Captain America: The Winter Soldier, so if the second half of the season continues to struggle, it will be hard to come up with excuses.

Do Gregg’s comments renew your hopes that the show can be turned around in its second half? Or do your issues with the show lie elsewhere? Share your thoughts in the comments. resurrection


Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1, Part 2 will premiere on ABC on Tuesday January 7, 2014.

Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: Zap2It

Follow Andrew Dyce on Twitter @andrew_dyce
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  1. This show as a whole is irredeemable and needs to be cancelled ASAP! The Coulson character however still has a chance given he’s done well in other Marvel properties. Hopefully they don’t allow this show to tarnish what they’ve already accomplished.

    • I concur.

      The thing the showrunners need to understand about Coulson’s reveal is that I don’t care because I am no longer watching the show because it was horrible.

      • Same.

        I’d rather read about it on SR or Wikipedia just so I know what stunt they pulled with it rather than waste my time and sanity watching any more episodes of this dire show.

        I gave up after episode 5 and even then, I thought that plot point was being overly stretched as a carrot to dangle in front of viewers in the hopes they’ll sit through an hour of crap in the hopes of gaining an extra nugget of info about Coulson’s resurrection.

        If they want to carry on with the show, hire better writers and actors and relegate it to a mini episode as a bonus feature on the movie home releases alongside the One Shots.

        • I don’t know I put myself through this show every friday night under the assumption that it has to get better at some point, it’s like watching The Walking Dead Season 1&2 only they never get to the prison (if you know what I mean).

          I still think the show can redeem itself IF part 2 of the first (and hopefully not last) season can have the show get it’s stuff together and finally start putting out some great episodes. Also remember that if it’s cancelled on season 1 given it’s fanbase it’s likely we’ll see a repeat of what happened with Firefly and that’s if it is cancelled,

          Something tells me Disney isn’t too keen to see AOS fail and is going to try and keep it going regardless of ratings.

  2. I’d rather be donkey punched than watch another episode of this.

    • You know Mnemonic, I can make that happen. I promise you, that you wont be able to make another stupid coment like that again when its over.

  3. The only reason I continue watching the show is because of Clark Gregg. I just wonder what they’re gonna do after the big reveal because nothing in the show so far has my slightest bit interest.

  4. reading about it on Screenrant is more exciting then watching the show

  5. I say let it keep going. Fans of the comics don’t have to watch it. But when the Netflix series’ begin a SHIELD show to tie in with could make for good storytelling. I mean there are way worst shows on tv now.

    • Worse shows yes. More disappointing shows, no.

      • I wouldn’t even say there are worse shows, just shows equally as bad as this one that I actively avoid because they don’t hold my interest either. Shows like Mike & Molly, Two Broke Girls, The Big Bang Theory, Grey’s Anatomy and so many others I could name and shame.

        • The Big Bang Theory right, on it’s seventh season with it’s own gigantic fanbase. Why can you just except that despite not liking the show it’s still successful enough to find it’s own audience. I hate Glee and Desperate Housewives and I could say the same about those shows.

        • Talking trash on the BBT? Easily one of the best shows on TV. Not saying those others are good, or even AoS, even though i like AoS, but trashing the BBT makes you look foolish. Its the highest rated comedy on TV in America – thats for a reason.

  6. The only problem I have is that they only play it once throughout the week and never again. and they play it on a night that im always busy. would love to watch it if it wasn’t playing on Tuesday nights

    • Maybe they could play it on a Friday like they do in England and while you guys are asking for a day shift could you ask that ABC allow Channel 4 to air AOS closer to the US release so that I’m not avoiding any US TV Show sites when the episodes launch. (it’s a bad show but still I’d rather not know any spoilers)

  7. This show gets better with every episode. The worst one was Joss’s pilot, but the last 4 or so have been pretty great. But there have been so many hints dropped as to who Coulson actually is (or will become), that if at this point, he doesn’t become Vision, and is seen making out with Scarlett Witch in A2, I’m gonna be pretty disappointed. I hope they’re not gonna at the last moment switch because people guessed it, like they did with the Guardians tease at the end of IM3.

  8. I gave up on this as well. I really expected the best from this and got the worst. Week after boring week. Maybe they should watch a few episodes of Arrow to understand how to do a comic book TV show right.

    • Just our luck in the UK.

      We get AoS returning in the next few weeks but have to wait until February 20th for Arrow to return. It’s like saying “Here’s a casserole made of poop and rotten food, enjoy it because you won’t get that delicious dessert you’ve been waiting for until you’ve suffered with the casserole for a good few weeks first”.

      The way I compare them is by imagining Arrow as the big blockbuster smash hit that does everything right and provides great acting, compelling storylines and a lot of tension while AoS is the cheap ripoff made by The Asylum that fails to hit the mark on all fronts but my god do they keep trying in the hope that someone will give in and start enjoying that crap.

      • I still wanted Justin Hartley to play in Arrow he has played as the Emerald Archer before he was pretty good in that role and besides it is a spin-off of Smallville and the next spin-off is gonna be Gotham but it’s gonna focus on Commissioner Gordon. Dazzler did you ever like watching Smallville the way it went from Superman’s story to forming the Justice League team

  9. i stopped watching after episode 7. then a friend of mine said it got better after that, so i tried watching again. i think i got trolled, it progressively got worse.

  10. Ladies. Relax the hating on the show. It will get better. What a bunch of pansies.

    • How are we pansies for wanting a good show that isn’t?

      • No the show is not 100% but your still a bunch of Pansies for making a comment like that.

        • You’re right! I’ll let every human on the planet know that their a pansy for wanting enjoyable entertainment.

          • Yep the only enjoyable entertainment is your wife for the rest of us.

            • I’m not married, see what happens when you make assumptions.

    • Why would I wait for anything when there is so many better forms of entertainment available.
      When it comes to shows, they only thing I will be waiting for is Game of Thrones to return!

  11. I’d rather be sold as a butt slave to a husky Mexican woman with a strap on, than watch an episode of this show again.

    • How do you REALLY feel?

    • Wanna trade places?


  12. Finally got to watch this show and all I have to say is…

    No. No it isn’t.
    This could end up being the best twist since Sixth Sense, Fight Club, Planet of the Apes, Usual Suspects, or Citizen Kane (to go WAY back! Rosebud!) and it wouldn’t make sitting through this bore of a show worth it.

    All the above mentioned movies were good because they were good, the twist just added to the enjoyment, it did not turn an otherwise bore-fest into something suddenly exciting. (See almost every movie M. Night made AFTER Sixth Sense)

    I can only guess that it is because of the popularity of the MMU that this show is still on air. Were it not connected it would be cancelled already.

  13. Excuse me sir, I do believe you meant to write “MCU”

    • Movie… Cinema… Either way it’s a semantic argument.

  14. Although I’m not surprised with all the hate the show is getting I must say it’s sadly getting really old.

    This show is and has been what it always promised to be, a fun, family friendly show based on the Shield organization. I mean come on, its on ABC, a Disney owned channel. Why does everybody expect the most realistic show ever?
    Yes it could be better, yes it has much room to grow, but at the end of the day those who watch show should have the biggest opinion about it and not the other way around. Reading all this comments makes me realize how desperate people are to collectively criticize and put down. Sad.

    • Being on ABC doesn’t mean anything. Shows like Revenge, Scandal, Castle offer more substance in the form of storytelling than AOS does. I watched up to the midseason break to see if it showed that the show was improving. So far there has been 2 episodes that were okay to good. With Arrow, at the midseason break I was already hooked. I saw an improving storyline along with better acting. This show recieves a lot of heat because it is bad. Truth be told, the only reason people continue watching the show is because it’s linked to Marvel. If it wasn’t then it wouldn’t have made it past the 3rd episode. The big Coulson mystery is about as played out as the Governor/prison storyline was for TWD. It’s time for them to rip the bandaid and move on with better substance. I will give it another 2 episodes to see if there is any change and if not, then I will also move on to another show. There are too many great shows now that can take up my Tuesday spot

  15. Im encouraged. but not too much, as I dont want my heart to be broken badly.

  16. Honestly at this point I no longer care at what “direction” they take with the heap known as Agents of SHIELD, I think it was a dumb concept from the start and that furthermore it was executed wrong. I do think Clark Gregg has made himself an asset in Marvel but they are misusing his talents and I think it would have been far better to make him a super somehow, than to make a story up in which he goes rogue. The entire premise of getting the Avengers initiative working was because of how “dedicated to the cause” coulson was, then why would he turn heel? I think this show weekend Wheddon’s credibility and makes me fear for what phase 3 will bring. However I will say I am desperately waiting more news on Netflix show’s agreements with Marvel and what they plan on doing as Netflix original series. I hope we see an “Arrow-esque” Daredevil show, or Blank Panther.

  17. You people are crazy IMO. Shield’s nothing but a fun action show with an attractive and likeable cast. All the plot points seem to be weaving together in fun and interesting ways and there’s the promise of some pretty sweet villians further down the road.

  18. To not be all negative, I will say I am looking forward to giving the same shot to those Marvel NetFlix shows that I gave Shield.

  19. They need to kill off the whole cast, replace them with a bunch of people with low level superpowers, and change the name of the show to Alphas.

    • This show needs to be as good or better than Mutant X.

  20. Like it or not, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will never be cancelled. Disney/Marvel/ABC have something rare in Hollywood. It’s called synergy. If u can keep up fan interest for a multi-billion dollar film universe by spending half a billion dollars on a television series that allows u to fix plot holes, set up new characters for future projects, push theatrical and home video releases and answer questions previously unanswered…….then u go for it.
    AoS will run 5 seasons, ending in April 2018 as a setup for Thanos arrival in Avengers 3. After a “bridge” season (2018-2019) u can expect AoS to evolve into Agents of S.W.O.R.D. for another 5 season run, culminating in 2024 with the release of Avengers 5. Before anyone thinks this is too farfetched keep in mind that the goal of Marvel is to expand. With that in mind S.W.O.R.D. is a natural progression from S.H.I.E.L.D. Plus since Joss Whedon created S.W.O.R.D. it only makes sense. Keeping Whedon in the Marvel stable beyond Avengers 3 may not be an easy thing to do but, given that he gets complete control of his projects, throwing in a new series (that he created) would be a very strong incentive.

    • Except that they’re trying to keep AOS as far apart from the movies as possible, so people aren’t required to watch the show to understand what’s going on in the MCU.

    • It’s a great concept but unfortunately AOS and the producers are trying to keep AOS as far apart from the movie world as possible. They already came out and said that there will be some tie ins to Cap 2 but that will be the only time they do that because they want a show that is apart from the movie world. “Agents of SHIELD is meant to be a standalone show and will be going forward”.

  21. Why is it that I keep reading that only “die hard” fans are keeping this show going? While I am a big fan of comics and movies based on them, especially Marvel, I must not be a “die hard” fan. I guess die hard fans enjoy bad tv.

  22. This show wont last past 2 seasons unless they do some serious changes. I don’t know if it will last past the first season. I stopped watching after episode 5, they let the show get to the point,noone cares what happen to Coulson. They will have to announce in commercials this is the night it gets answered for people to watch.

    It’s a real let down because this show had so much potential it could have changed the game for CMB tv shows. Now it just seems like a wasted opportunity. Its cool to use new characters but don’t ignore Marvels big roster of characters. They could have fought B villains with high tech weapons or something. They should have went up against Hydra or AIM at least.

    This show is so bad it makes me wonder about watching the netflix shows coming out.

  23. they should use the team agents that were in the compound where thor’s hammer fell.

    and they should use that big guy that thor fought in the mud before trying to get his hammer back.

  24. I agree that the show had a rough start. Many shows, especially those in a sci-fi or fantasy world, have them as actors get used to the characters. Star Trek: TNG was the same back in the day… While still not the greatest show on TV, it has become better and i look forward to what they have coming after the break.

    My guess is that it is being drawn out because of an over all schedule for the universe as a whole. Its the only reason I can think of to have it drawn out so much and all the comments about it being worth the wait and there being a plan in mind.

    My theory is that Coulson is a LMD and that it will tie into the creation of Ultron for the coming Avengers sequel.

  25. I am enjoying this. yes, there are some weak spots that need to be addressed, but overall it is entertaining. It was never meant to be cerebral, nor was it meant to be “tentpole” as some seem to have expected and of course as many would rightfully desire. It was meant to be supplemental to the bigger hero movies like Avengers, etc.; not the main course, just a side-dish, and as this I think it succeeds. The Bobbsey-twins scientists and Skye (cute tho she is in her underwear) do not add much to the show, and Melinda May is too witchy-attitude-wise. Grant should quit messing around with her, and buy a smut mag, which would undoubtably give him more companionship than her. I do like Grant Ward and Coulson, though. I would not be totally surprised if Dr. Strange or Scarlet Witch had a little bit to do with Coulson’s return, although Marvel could go a totally different direction and really surprise the heck out of me. I am OK with any of the above. I will keep watching this to the end, and buy the series on DVD for the collection if and when it comes out.

  26. I’m calling it… Vision!

  27. is the Centiepde organisation a random/new creation specifically for the show? I’m assuming it is.. As such for the life of me I can my understand why it could have been A.I.M or Hydra instead.. Or you know any number of other clandestine organizations or group already existing in the marvel U. Sigh.

    • It still could end up being one of those organizations. Just because that is the name the Team is calling it doesn’t mean that is actually what the organization is calling itself.

    • It could still be AIM or Hydra (although give the science background AIM seems more likely) or it could be a smaller organisation working on behalf of AIM, given what happened in Iron Man 3 it makes sense that AIM would work in a way so that their never out in the open.

      I actually think they should bring George Tarleton into the MCU as the new head of AIM having looked up to Aldrich Killian but thinking that he didn’t go far enough as in if AIM wanted to they could have become a legit threat since let’s fact it in Iron Man 3 AIM wasn’t as big as they were in the comics.

  28. I really tried to like this show, but even I must admit that it’s garbage.

  29. I’m still watching, because despite the clumsy directing, predictable dialogue… I think there’s still potential. Maybe the producers and ABC will open their eyes and ears and fix the issues before the season ends.

    • @Pitt Man – I’m in agreement with you. I feel as if the show has improved after a very lackluster debut, and I feel as if it has the potential to be much better. Plus, some other shows are a lot worse than this one.

      But I believe the Insufferable Deadpool said it best: “Worse shows yes. More disappointing shows, no.”