With the impending release of Avengers: Infinity War, we explore how Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. could reference the Marvel movie - and whether it will. When Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. debuted on ABC in 2013, it was Marvel TV's first spinoff from the larger film universe. Throughout its run, the show has featured both specific tie-in episodes to the Marvel Cinematic Universe films as well as looser connections. For instance, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was greatly impacted by Captain America: The Winter Soldier, which forced the show to reinvent itself. But the series' connection to Doctor Strange was much looser, with S.H.I.E.L.D. exploring magic thanks to the introduction of Ghost Rider.
However, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. hasn't really referenced Marvel Studios' most recent movies, with no explicit ties to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok or Black Panther. Of course, two of those films took place in space and one was set in the isolated nation of Wakanda. Plus, there may be a loose connection between S.H.I.E.L.D. and Black Panther, but it's unconfirmed.
So, Marvel fans are likely wondering if Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will reference the massive events of Avengers: Infinity War. Based on trailers, we know Infinity War will feature Thanos' massive Q-ship hovering over New York City, some kind of superhero fight in the city, and an even bigger battle in Wakanda. But will it affect Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 5's mission to save the world from their own cataclysmic event? We break it down.
How Agents of SHIELD Could Reference Infinity War
As with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s connections to Captain America: Civil War, the show could simply make reference to the goings on of the Avengers by having a character see a news report on TV. Of course, the agents are stuck in the underground bunker of the Lighthouse, so that may be difficult. Still, the show could include some other kind of reference to Thanos or the Avengers. In the past, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has featured Easter eggs related to Marvel's Netflix series. Even something as small as an Easter egg would undoubtedly delight fans.
Plus, arguably one of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s biggest strengths is acting as the piece of the MCU puzzle that ties everything together. The series has included the most references and connections to other MCU properties than any other film or TV show in the universe. It would almost be out of character for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to not include some kind of connection or Easter egg for Infinity War.
Still, though fans may be expecting Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to reference Infinity War, it may not be in the way they think. In fact, perhaps the S.H.I.E.L.D. team's storyline dealing with alien invaders and the potential destruction of the Earth is the show's loose way of paying homage to Infinity War.
Agents of SHIELD May Not Reference Infinity War
In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 5, the agents have plenty to deal with on their own, without having to also worry about the Avengers' battle against Thanos. Considering their trip to the future and back, not to mention all the forces they're working against and their mission to save the planet, the team may be too busy.
Beyond the show's storyline, there's also the fact of the division between Marvel Studios and Marvel TV, which results in a great deal of separation between the MCU films and shows. While Marvel TV head Jeph Loeb likes to say "it's all connected," the television side typically does all the heavy lifting. Further, with Avengers: Infinity War being the most secret project Marvel Studios has produced thus far, it's likely the TV side doesn't want to risk spoiling anything. To avoid even the smallest spoilers, perhaps Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. won't reference Infinity War at all.
It remains to be seen whether Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. actually references Avengers: Infinity War in its April 27 episode, "Option Two" (or a later episode since the movie was originally expected to debut in May). Still, Marvel fans would no doubt appreciate some form of connection between the two MCU properties - especially for such a massive event as Infinity War.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Fridays at 9pm on ABC.
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019