Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will always be a proof of concept show - Marvel Television’s chance to prove it can stand on its own without existing source material. In some ways, it works great, but it other ways, it falters. That said, in the end, it’s an enjoyable series, even if there’s one aspect to its business model that continues to annoy viewers.
With season 2 going strong, many are still baffled by the fact that S.H.I.E.L.D. is still not available in an easily accessible SVOD format, especially when both Disney and ABC have respective deals with Netflix already, and most Marvel movies are already available on the service. However, a new report claims that’s all about the change.
According to Variety, Marvel Television and Netflix have finally settled on a roll out date for season 1 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: November 20th.
This deal couldn’t have come any more under the wire as Marvel Television and Netflix are currently hard at work on the first of four new series, Daredevil to be specific, which will be used to launch a new “Defenders Saga” on the service. Since Marvel Television hopes to tie all its entities together the same way the movies are, having all their series available for fans in a single place should be a top priority.
What’s unknown is why it’s taken so long for S.H.I.E.L.D. to hit the digital platform, especially when all other ABC shows currently run a model that see the previous season of a series hit the service just prior to the premiere of the next. One theory could be Marvel was hoping to get more sales out of the DVD and Blu-ray release of the show, as a digital roll-out could dramatically diminish physical disc sales (which run upwards of $50 a pop).
A similar tactic may have been used for The CW's Arrow. Fans of the series were expecting season 2 to be released on Netflix a week prior to season 3. However, on the day of the expected digital premiere, it was revealed that the season 2 release would be pushed for unspecified reasons and wouldn't be available until after the season 3 premiere. It was at that point that many assumed what we are now for S.H.I.E.L.D.: that the delay occurred to a help increase physical disc sales.
Regardless of the why, Marvel fans that have patiently waited to binge on the return of Phil Coulson will now have the opportunity to do so starting this week, just in time for the beginning of holiday breaks.
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesdays @9pm on ABC.