‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Pilot Synopsis & Featurette Hint at Extremis Return?

Published 2 years ago by , Updated June 14th, 2014 at 11:31 am,

Marvel Studios and Disney will be trying to further expand the massive success of their superhero universe this fall, making the jump from big-screen movies to small-screen television with the premiere of ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the new spinoff show that follows the men and women of the Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division, as they try to combat the new threats that arise in an Avengers world, following the team’s milestone battle in New York against the alien Chitauri.

In anticipation of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s premiere in a few weeks, we have a new featurette and synopsis for the pilot episode (which was directed by Avengers helmer Joss Whedon) – both of which are geared toward explaining just where the show fits into the Avengers timeline, and how it will incorporate various other aspects of the Major Marvel Movies.

The featurette gives us behind-the-scenes looks at the show’s action and comedy mix – which seems to be signature “Brand Whedon,” judging from the quick snippets of both (female-oriented) action and slapstick comedy shown in the footage above. Not only has that tone and signature worked for the Marvel movies (see: billion-dollar Avengers), it also happens to have been the same successful blend Whedon applied to his string of cult-hit TV shows like Buffy, Angel and Firefly. The more serious-minded Dollhouse never flew quite as high as the other Whedon shows, so to those fans hoping for a more intense spy drama experience, I say: maybe Whedon keeping things light is a good thing?

Marvels Agents of SHIELD Pilot Synopsis Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Pilot Synopsis & Featurette Hint at Extremis Return?

More interesting, however, is the synopsis for the Pilot episode of the show, which premieres on Tuesday September 24th:

These agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. have a mission: To investigate the new, the strange and the unknown around the globe, protecting the ordinary from the extraordinary.

In the premiere episode, “Pilot,” it’s just after the battle of New York, and now that the existence of super heroes and aliens has become public knowledge, the world is trying to come to grips with this new reality. Agent Phil Coulson is back in action and has his eye on a mysterious group called the Rising Tide. In order to track this unseen, unknown enemy, he has assembled a small, highly select group of Agents from the worldwide law-enforcement organization known as S.H.I.E.L.D. (Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division). The group’s first assignment together as a team finds them trying to track down an ordinary man who has gained extraordinary powers. Powers that could have devastating consequences.

On the surface that seems pretty logical, no? The resurrected Agent Coulson (can’t wait for THAT explanation) assembles his own team of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents to monitor and control world events after a massive game-changer like “The Battle of New York.” Indeed, Marvel has done well at exploring the cause and effect of their fantastical movie universe developments from within a (semi-)real world context – and the question of how the world’s top spies and combat operatives now rank compared to super-powered beings is certainly an interesting one – interesting enough to serve as a suitable hook for an ongoing TV series.

However, the one line in that synopsis that raises eyebrows on the careful observer is the mention that in the pilot the team will track down an “ordinary man who was gained extraordinary powers” – the keyword in that sentence being “gained.” We already know that there are no mutants in Marvel’s universe (thanks to legal snags from Fox’s X-Men rights), but what that synopsis describes is something different than the Marvel One-Shot “Item 47,” in which leftover Chitauri technology was the catalyst for mayhem. The S.H.I.E.L.D. pilot will explore the idea of regular people being able to gain superpowers – the question is: by what method will they do so?

Agents of SHIELD TV Series Pilot Extremis Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Pilot Synopsis & Featurette Hint at Extremis Return?

It seems odd to think that a pilot episode of an ensemble TV show would invest significant time in the origin story of an antagonist – meaning that it doesn’t seem like a super-soldier serum or gamma ray mishap will create a familiar Marvel super villain. Given what the showrunners and Marvel Executives like Kevin Feige have said in the past, it’s more likely that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will be tying itself to the current arc of the Marvel Phase Two movies by introducing Extremis into the mix.

The clues are there:

  1. Feige has indicated that Extremis would return, and that S.H.I.E.L.D.’s absence in Iron Man 3 would be explained. The events of the pilot could accomplish both. 
  2. Extremis was a process that turns “ordinary people” into super-powered beings who could potentially explode – hence, “powers that could have devastating consequence.”
  3. Since Extremis is not specific to any one character or origin story, it gives opportunity for a “freak of the week” format for initial episodes of the TV show.
  4. The villains behind Extremis in IM3 were scientists, arms dealers and hired goons – foes well-suited to battling a covert spy team.

This theory makes the most amount of sense – as indicated above – and would essentially make companion pieces out of the first two chapters in Marvel’s “Phase Two” story arc (IM3 and AoS). In fact, if it IS Extremis at the center of all this, it would raise some interesting questions as to where IM3 and AoS fall in relation to one another on the Marvel Phase Two timeline. Care to venture any guesses?

Finally, if you want to know some of the more technical info – like who is starring in, writing, and/or producing the show, check out the rest of the synopsis, below:

“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” stars Clark Gregg as Agent Phil Coulson, Ming-Na Wen as Agent Melinda May, Brett Dalton as Agent Grant Ward, Chloe Bennet as Skye, Iain De Caestecker as Agent Leo Fitz and Elizabeth Henstridge as Agent Jemma Simmons.

Guest starring are J. August Richards as Mike, Shannon Lucio as Debbie, Ron Glass as Dr. Streiten and Bob Stephenson as Gary, with special guest star Cobie Smulders as Agent Maria Hill.

”Pilot” was written by Joss Whedon & Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen and directed by Joss Whedon.

“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” Marvel’s first television series, was co-created by Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen (“Dollhouse,” “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog”), who also serve as executive producers along with Jeph Loeb (“Smallville,” “Lost,” “Heroes”) and Jeffrey Bell (“Angel,” “Alias”). “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is produced by ABC Studios and Marvel Television.


Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. premieres on Tuesday, September 24 @8pm EST on ABC.

Source: Marvel

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  1. ..I really wish I cared about this show. But I just can’t.

    • I kinda agree, I love the marvel movies but this looks like an avengers cash in that is never gonna deliver like it should. If ratings bomb after the first episode i bet we’ll see RDJ or cris evans show up

      • It’s gunna be basically “CSI: Marvel” with more attention to the tracking of superhumans than actually full on serious superhuman feats.
        But for the love of The One Above All pleeaaase no more Extremis.
        That’s just my opinion.


    • Wow as much as I love the movies I have to agree with you the show just isn’t sparking much interest but I’ll be watching

    • whoa i thought i was the only :D when i first saw some info about this show happening, i had the same feeling. i dont really know why. i love the recent Marvel movies, but a series sounded unappealing and boring to me. hmmm. maybe its because of the characters? i dont know.

      • *only one.

  2. I wonder if there will be any mention of the events of Thor TDW once that hits theaters. Just a subtle mention could be kind of fun.

    • I think they said this show will tie in the upcoming movies. Obviously they are referencing IM3, but maybe they will segue into Thor TDW.

  3. I’ve always needed a Tues show other than Tosh. Hope this delivers.

    • Person of Interest moves to Tuesdays. So that’ll be two Tuesday shows for me.

      • Person of Interest lost my interest quite awhile ago.

      • +1

        • -1

  4. This maybe a good series but I don’t think its needed as this spin off is just trying to make some cash off the back of The Avengers. Will have a look at this and see which characters they introduce.

  5. I hope it’s a real tv show with a real long story like Heroes, Lost or 24, not a “one bad guy per episode” tv show like Arrow (whish looks cheap and lame)

    • Arrow moved away from that format in the second half of its season. There were maybe one or two there but it mostly focused on the main bad guy.

    • Many TV shows have both, a threat or monster of the week, while there is an overall story-arc that expands as the season(s) move forward. I like that format, because we have interesting things happening, while the big stuff is slowly revealed by giving us clues and information every week, building up to something bigger.

  6. Mike? You guys mispelled Luke Cage.

  7. @JustSomeGuy – actually, he isn’t Luke Cage. He is Mike Peterson, a minor character with ties to the hero Slapstick (who in turn has ties to the New Warriors). And yes, his powers do come from Extremis in the show. (He doesn’t have any in the comics).

  8. Well, i hate freak of the week shows. Hence why arrow fell short for me pretty quickly. Also you cant just throw extremis in there, wasnt it explained that killian targeted amputees? Is there that many amputees that killian would use? Sounds like connected the two for a whole series may be tough. For the pilot sure why not

    • Arrow moved away from that in the latter half of the season. They focused more on what was later dubbed The Undertaking.

      As for Extremis, was anything really explained? Even their abilities were inconsistent. Perhaps more AIM, instead?

  9. lets hope Pepper doesn’t show up for every episode!

    • I doubt Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) is going to show up in any episodes.

      • She can show up and save the day at the end of every episode.

  10. Quit with the f***ing SPAM already!

  11. could Punisher show up? hmmmm

  12. Don’t forget about Zodiac that was hinted in Agent Carter… I think that might pave its way into this tv series as well.

  13. Lol. Freak of the week. Sound familiar to anyone else? Exact same as meteor freaks from Smallville. I like it. I hope it is able to keep it interesting same as Smallville. Make it its own before bringing in big names. Looking forward to this show and it will be good cause it Joss Wheadon.

  14. I dont see why people are complaining, Joss Whedon at the helm of another T.V show? yes please :)

  15. I can see why some people aren’t all that excited for this show; the premise doesn’t sound that interesting, and there aren’t any big names from the Marvel universe making an appearance.

    On the other hand…
    A Joss Whedon show is on TV again what is wrong with you people?!

  16. As long as Coulson I in it, I’m there! That is until it gets lame, which for me that shouldn’t take long! I have not been interested in a T.V. series a very LOOOOOMG time..
    PLUS I can’t remember when the shows air, So after eek 2 I will start forgetting about it.

  17. Pilot episode sounds like will be really good. Hope rest of show will be good. Looking forward to it.

  18. Can’t wait for this, I’m really interested in how they are going to do this week to week.

    I think a lot of good shows spend the first half of their first season doing some sort of “freak of the week” format, but break away mid season when the characters have been established. If The Rising Tide is the group behind things for the majority of the season, at least there can be a running story behind some self contained episodes.

    It’s a Joss Whedon show, so I’m not worried :) (well I am.. hope it doesnt get cancelled after season one….)

    • Also…the Incredible Hulk movie introduced the Leader(Prof Samuel Sterns) a character who is more then capable of creating threats.

  19. If it’s just after The Battle of New York then the Shield Agents can’t exactly find out that AIM are behind this or anything that Tony Stark found out about The Mandarin in Iron Man 3 otherwise it means Shield didn’t let Tony in on what they knew,

    I mean if they find out AIM are behind everything it makes no sense not to go and tell Tony Stark “Hey you know that guy Aldrich Killian that’s been showing up at Stark Industries lately? Yeah his think tank AIM are bad guys so maybe let us know when the guy shows up so we can arrest him!”

  20. I can’t wait for this, but please don’t do a freak of the week thing!

  21. I’m super excited for this show. Can’t wait for the Pilot!

  22. If it’s “just after the battle of New York” I would think the Pilot is set between ‘The Avengers’ (summer 2012) and ‘Iron Man 3′ (Christmas 2012)…

  23. I just Googled that ‘Mike’ guy and it basically said who he is, what his powers are, how he got them and so on, so… yeah. Don’t Google it if you don’t want massive spoilers :P

  24. For the people who aren’t really looking forward to ‘Agents of SHIELD,’ you might be suprised since it is being directed by the one and only Joss Whedon.
    The same guy that brought us Buffy, Firefly, Angel..
    I have a feeling that this is gonna be great.

  25. Extremis and/or AIM involvement? Sure, why not? It’s fair game.
    If the timeline (for at least this season or part of it) is between summer 2012(New York battle) and Christmas 2012 (Iron Man 3) then, by theory, that would work. AIM could be behind Rising Tide (as they claimed to be behind The Ten Rings) and still be a threat. In addition, don’t forget – the country would be in chaos as a Government scandal involving the VP (as seen in IM3) would play out as well.

    There’s also possibilities of if Hulk or Cap gotten scraped and DNA samples were taken (or Chartari, for that matter) and AIM / Tide / Players To Be Named Later might attempt to replicate the samples.

    Yes, I’m going to make a case for Man-Thing again….
    but personally I can see a guest spot for Will Hurt as General Ross and a build up to Red Hulk.

  26. I bet Marvel is kicking themselves for letting the rights to certain properties of theirs go to all these different movie studios

  27. Why is there so many negative doubts here? Just because DC shows suck doesn’t mean Marvel’s will too. LOL But anyway Whedon made Buffy the Vampire Slayer, it was awesome. With Phil cak I really dont’ understand why all the negative comments are published. Sure it’s not gonna be a great and the best show on earth thing, but it could give us insider looks in the BIG movies and maybe give us major plots, I mean, its SHIELD right? They know alot of marvel heroes…com’on peeps