Season 7 of Agents of SHIELD will be it's last. When Agents of SHIELD began on ABC back in 2014, the belief was the fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe would be treated to an ongoing story on the small screen closely tied to the movies. Clark Gregg returned to star as a resurrected Phil Coulson, but everything changed in the middle of season one when Captain America: The Winter Soldier was released and declared the end of S.H.I.E.L.D. From that point forward, Agents of SHIELD has continued to reinvent itself, diving into time travel, Inhumans, robots, demons, and much more.
After the early struggles of trying to stay connected to the movies, the series has proved to be at its best when it does its own thing, even if that means some inconsistencies with how, when, or if it fits in the MCU timeline. For season six, which is currently just crossed the half-way point of a 13 episode run, Agents of SHIELD is currently dealing with an alien invasion and a Coulson lookalike, with the last episode possibly being the best of the season after a shocking final scene.
Prior to the next episode dropping, the cast and crew of Agents of SHIELD are set to arrive at San Diego Comic-Con for the show's first Hall H panel. Gregg will appear alongside fellow castmates Ming-Na Wen, Chloe Bennet, Elizabeth Henstridge, Iain De Caestecker, Henry Simmons, Natalia Cordova-Buckley, and Jeff Ward, as well as executive producers Maurissa Tancharoen, Jed Whedon, Jeff Bell, and Jeph Loeb. Before the panel though, Deadline has revealed that the series will end with its seventh season. The final season will air sometime in 2020. Here is what Loeb told Deadline about the decision to end Agents of SHIELD now:
When you know that’s what you’re doing, you can take greater risks, of life and death. Those kinds of decisions suddenly now are real on the table because you’re not playing how do we undo this when we get to the next season. You’re playing that this is going to be the end of the story.
Since Agents of SHIELD was the first TV series set within the MCU, it coming to an end is truly an end of an era. In the extensive interview linked before, Loeb is understandably cagey on what season 7 could contain. He leaves the door open for a few surprise appearances after the series' past ability to use Nick Fury, Maria Hill, and Lady Sif in limited capacities. The final season could even be where previous fan-favorite characters like Ghost Rider and Mockingbird could return.
With season 7 of Agents of SHIELD confirmed to arrive sometime in 2020, it remains to be seen when ABC will start airing the final episodes. The season is already in production thanks to ABC previously giving Agents of SHIELD an early renewal, so it could be ready as part of their winter 2020 lineup. But, if they are happy with how the show currently is performing in the summer, then they could hold the final season for close to a year. Either way, the end is on the horizon for these agents.