Does the ‘Captain America 2′ Trailer Prove ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Has Failed?

Published 1 year ago by , Updated November 13th, 2013 at 4:15 pm,

agents of shield coulson sad 570x294 Does the Captain America 2 Trailer Prove Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Has Failed?

For the past five weeks, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  has been attempting to make the transition from fledgling series into an earnest entry in Marvel’s ever-growing universe. But with the release of the spectacular Captain America: The Winter Solider trailer – while Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is taking a week off -  one must begin to wonder if Marvel has accidentally put the coffin nail in their struggling television counter-part with but a mere trailer reveal.

Let’s get it out of the way now: The Captain America: The Winter Solider trailer – all 2:27 minutes of it – is a better episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. than all the aired episodes of the series combined. Of course, when it comes to watching minutes of a $150+ million production, there’s no way a television show budget can even compare. Not one bit.

This, however, is not what Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. should be worried about.

agents of shield coulson 2 570x294 Does the Captain America 2 Trailer Prove Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Has Failed?Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Throughout the Captain America: The Winter Solider trailer, viewers are finally able to see more of the inner-workings of Marvel’s secret agency which, from the point of view of the television series, has largely consisted of cramped office spaces, a generic computer lab and parking so scarce that Coulson has to park his sports car, Lola, in a plane. On the other hand, the S.H.I.E.L.D. depicted in the trailer is an impressive, awe-inspiring organization whose resources are on full display. Putting the theatrical  vs. TV budgets debate aside, what the newly-released Cap 2 trailer unfortunately does is call into question the purpose of the Aos TV series – even more than audiences already have.

517986061 c 620 439 Does the Captain America 2 Trailer Prove Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Has Failed?

What we have so far is this: Agent Coulson – (formerly) S.H.I.E.L.D.’s top agent – is killed, brought back to life (somehow) and is “stuck” with a cast of misfits who don’t really do all that much and aren’t all that successful. In the 5 episodes of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. that have aired, there have been multiple accounts of inside information being leaked out, 2 supervillains created, 1 new girl leading an “important” mission, and 0 mysteries revealed during those never-ending plane rides. It seems, in part, that Coulson may have been given the most boring division of S.H.I.E.L.D. there is.

With a rag-tag group consisting of the silent one (Melinda May), the generic one (Grant Ward), the new one (Skye) and two “geeks” who are likely too talkative to make it onboard the Helicarrier, Coulson has been traveling the globe for seemingly no reason or purpose. Nothing, as of yet, has really come from any of the missions that they’ve been sent on, and Coulson is still making over-the-top references about how something is a bit off.

captain america 2 agents of shield 570x294 Does the Captain America 2 Trailer Prove Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Has Failed?Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Then comes the Captain America: The Winter Solider trailer, and S.H.I.E.L.D. is shown as the powerful organization that it is – not just by its impressive arsenal of planes, vehicles and a Helicarrier, but by its intense dedication to the protection of the planet. This is what one can simply intuit from the trailer; no mysteries or over-the-top musical accompaniments are needed. Everyone and everything has a purpose, and there isn’t a single person running around wondering what they’re supposed to be doing, or making references to how important a specific mission is. If something is important, audiences – especially in today’s age – will know.

In short, what the Cap 2 trailer lacks in time to fully develop its characters and their story, it makes up with CGI and effects. Don’t know how impressive S.H.I.E.L.D. is? Watch the gigantic Helicarrier crash in to the earth. As a television show, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. cannot keep up in that way – and it isn’t, thankfully. What Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. should be doing is taking the extended time provided – its version of a $150+ million budget – and tell intimate tales worth telling, or that are at least interesting, while actually making us feel like we are embedded in an actual top espionage agency dedicated to protecting the planet.

agents of shield plane 570x294 Does the Captain America 2 Trailer Prove Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Has Failed?Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Right now, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is a series with no soul or purpose, and there’s no number of supervillain origins that will change that. It’s a television show that exists because it need$ to. Instead of stretching the small cast and limited budget to the max with production tricks, viewers are met with unnecessary, over-reaching tales that make it absolutely obvious that you’re watching a superhero(-esque) series on a budget, on ABC at 8pm. But even if S.H.I.E.L.D. makes the necessary tweaks to finally earn its early season renewal, can it survive the upcoming onslaught of the Marvel Cinematic Universe?


NEXT PAGE: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. & Marvel’s Future Plans



James Spader Talks Age of Ultron Does the Captain America 2 Trailer Prove Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Has Failed?

With Marvel already working on a film schedule that reaches far into the future, and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. viewed as a sister-cousin to these tales, audiences are likely going to have a difficult time transitioning from the shock and awe that comes from the films to a television show that may or may not be struggling to find its way for that particular season.

Let’s jump ahead to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. in 2015. The Avengers: Age of Ultron premieres shortly before the season 2 finale airs, but all mentions of what occurred in the film are compacted into a quick, insider mention so as to not turn off those who have not seen it yet. Now entering its third season, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. would not only have to combat all the normal television tropes of an aging series (keeping the story fresh, characters interesting and evolving, etc.), it would also have to incorporate the developments of the film universe in order to stay relevant.

On top of that, Batman vs. Superman will have already hit theaters (pulling attention toward two of the biggest superheroes in existence), and DC’s response to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.Gotham – which will NOT carry the burden of being connected to DC’s Cinematic Universe – will (likely) be on the air as well. If Ben Affleck’s Batman rekindles interest in that character and his world, and Gotham‘s comic book police procedural format is a hit, what would Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. be then but a clear example of a good idea poorly executed?

agents shield tv show joss whedon Does the Captain America 2 Trailer Prove Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Has Failed?

Now, after taking a looking at where Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is and where it will be required to go in the future, it’s almost impossible to envision that the series will reach big heights without some heavy-handed help from ABC and Disney. And if it could – even with the help – is it worth it? Are the tales being told worth the time and money that’s being invested, from both the viewer and studio? So far, that answer is “no.”

Will that change? Only time will tell – but Coulson might be better off preparing for a retirement with his favorite cellist.


SEE ALSO: Winter Soldier Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Story Connection


Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesday @8pm on ABC

Captain America 2: The Winter Soldier premieres April 4, 2014

« 1 2View All»

Follow Anthony Ocasio on Twitter @anthonyocasio
Get our free email alerts on the topics and author of this article:


Post a Comment

GravatarWant to change your avatar?
Go to and upload your own (we'll wait)!

 Rules: No profanity or personal attacks.
 Use a valid email address or risk being banned from commenting.

If your comment doesn't show up immediately, it may have been flagged for moderation. Please try refreshing the page first, then drop us a note and we'll retrieve it. Keep in mind that we do not allow external links in the comments.

  1. I enjoy the show. It’s far from excellent though, and I doubt too many tears would be shed if it were canceled. The Coulson resurrection would just be explained in one of the movies, and possibly with better execution.

  2. Here’s stating something obvious but perhaps not a view shared by all.

    Coulson is a bland character. There just doesn’t seem to be enough personality on him. The only reason why he has so many fans is because of his recurring appearance in the MCU – quite like Fury who is a more interesting character.

    It still jars me that the death of Coulson in The Avengers was a more uniting factor than the destruction of New York for The Avengers.

    I’m not sure why Marvel have hung their hats (and an entire TV show) on this character.

    • Coulson to me was a straight man and used for exposition in the movies and is like a side dish. When not interacting with more interesting and known characters and slight better to much better actors the characters works well, but carrying weaker characters might be too much to ask.

    • They United after Coulsons death and not the destruction of New York because it hadn’t happened yet. Coulson got stabbed by the Loki Pokey stick, then they united, then the Chitauri attacked and THEN New York was destroyed, or atleast messed up. How could they unite over something that hadn’t happened yet!! Plus Coulson was quite close with Stark, and as he is a big part of the Avengers it pulled them together….

  3. I enjoy the show and it seems lke every article Iread on here is actually counting on it to fail rather than hoping for the best

    • No one wants to hope for the best’ for a turd of a show like this

  4. hopefully during this hiatus they are re-filming/re-shooting to make things more upbeat with more suspense. I do think they do the humor well but not enough introduction of new characters.

  5. Marvel Studios could have produced a S.H.I.E.L.D film trilogy; but for whatever reason, took a sizable risk and choose to produce Guardians of the Galaxy and Inhumans instead.

    As this article states – S.H.I.E.L.D is a big budget high end property. In its infancy, Marvel television swung for the fences and made the unwise decision to capitalize on Marvel Studios decision to pass on the S.H.I.E.L.D franchise by producing a low budget S.H.I.E.L.D ‘knock off’ and possibly an Agent Carter series.

    Marvel Television should have gone the super natural route (as FOX did with Sleepy Hollow) targeted young adults first, then moved into the young female demographic and finally the pre-teen audience.

    For example, start off with a Ted Sallis / Project Sulfur origins story first, it has super soldier serum, shady government shenanigans, spies, and A.I.M harassment – and can be produced weekly on a micro / nano budget.

    Then with the Jennifer Kale tie-in produce a Witches spin-off were Werewolf by night has a recurring role and finally a Howard the Duck spin-off giving Marvel television a foundation for (A)Marvel Zombies and (B)Legion of Monsters franchises.

  6. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. sucks. This isn’t the show I thought we were getting.

    Disney, please kill it ASAP and give us the show we deserve.

    The concept was great, the execution? It looks like a fan made YouTube show.

  7. I agree with this article…and Bobby Boston’s post.

    There are four other Marvel tv shows in various stages of development. Scrap this and do something else.

  8. The show just isn’t what fans wanted to see. People are upset because of what it could be or should be, and that is, much better than what it is.
    There’s no way they can’t do better with the endless amount characters that Marvel has at it’s disposal. With great shows like Arrow, Grimm, and Tomorrow People that’s worth my time, Agents of SHIELD just isn’t making the cut. I think that’s due to the expecations fans had of it.

    • I don’t mind the show using mainly original characters. But yes, Marvel fans had very high expectations of it. But with a trailer like what they released, there was no reason not to.

  9. I totally agree with this article, Coulson is a boring character and should not be a star of a high budget T.V show. What i thought this show was going to do, was set up future avenger movies or build the stepping stones to an Ultimate Alliance movie? If they introduced super heros in episodes that joined them on thier misson then we would have a hit show. For example thier is no reason in the 2nd episode why they couldn’t of introduced the Black Panther? Watch the first scene, they go to an ancient pyramid and find a magic artifact that has a paw on it?

    This show needs touse the current cast as an asset to find superhero’s and add them to the crew. Other wise this show has no purpose and will fade away

  10. Agents of SHIELD: Not terrible, vast room for improvement.

    On another note: Don Cheadle has been confirmed for Avengers 2. My bet is that they’re bringing him on to be killed by Ultron, to make him a more believable threat…


  11. Umm…Coulson parks his car on the Bus so he can bring it with him for when it’s needed, it has nothing to do with the “parking” situation at SHIELD.


    • I love the show personally, I do feel that they have put in all the effort needed, and I would not imagine the show any different than it is. I think ABC surpassed expectations and all!

  12. I’ll bet whoever wrote this post is eating thier words now.

  13. I’ll bet whoever wrote this post is eating their words now. Also, typos are fun.