The stars of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. have promised that the hotly-anticipated 100th episode will be an "emotional game-changer."
A 100th episode is a milestone for any show, and for a superhero TV series it's a real achievement. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was launched in 2013, and over the last five seasons has built up a mythology all of its own. That seems to be going to a head in the 100th episode, which will even feature the return of villains such as Hive and Lash.
To celebrate the 100th episode, the cast and creatives held a party - and journalists from TVLine were invited too. They spoke to Marvel insiders, eager to get a sense of what to expect from "The Real Deal." Showrunner Maurissa Tancharoen promised that the episode will be "a little bit of a game-changer... definitely an emotional game-changer."
That was something of a recurring theme. According to Marvel TV chief Jeph Loeb, the episode "resets the table." It will bring resolution to a lot of long-running arcs, some of which have been in the works for seasons. "It also finishes up some stories that perhaps [viewers] didn’t even know we haven’t revealed," Loeb added, a comment that's sure to intrigue S.H.I.E.L.D. fans. Clark Gregg himself echoed the sentiment:
"It’s an episode where a lot of things that have been being built toward — some of them in ways you didn’t even really realize — really come to a head and pay off in ways that change things going forward. Some of those things have building for seasons, and some have been building since the pilot."
In Elizabeth Henstridge's view, this episode is essentially a "thank you" to the fans who've stuck with the show for 100 episodes. She stressed that she believed it would be fairly accessible to new viewers, but there would be "so many, just gorgeous Easter eggs."
Little is known about the plot of the 100th episode, "The Real Deal." The episode will lead on from the shocking twists in "All the Comforts of Home," which saw Yo-Yo horrifically injured by the masked Ruby Hale. It's also confirmed to feature key monsters and villains making their return, including Hive, Lash, and a Vrellnexian. How those returns fit into the overarching narrative of Season 5, which features the S.H.I.E.L.D. team attempting to avert a dystopian future, is uncertain.
One thing's for certain, though; Marvel intends the 100th episode to be a celebration of everything that has made Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. great. Currently Marvel's best-reviewed TV series on Rotten Tomatoes, the last two seasons have seen the show go from strength to strength. Fans await Friday's episode with an eager sense of expectation.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. continues Friday March 9th with its 100th episode, “The Real Deal” at 9pm on ABC.