Things Could Change Soon for Marvel TV
While that's the status quo now, change is coming to Marvel TV, regardless of storytelling feasibility. Disney will soon debut their own streaming service, and while it won't have any of the Netflix Marvel shows on it, a new live-action Marvel show will be among the exclusive offerings. Should this be done specifically under the Disney umbrella, it would give this particular Marvel TV project the kind of freedom and resources the ABC and Netflix shows lack (not to mention a bigger budget), and thus the chances of a crossover would be greatly increased.
But that's ignoring everything we've got so far. As it stands, the most realistic way that a crossover between the Marvel movies and the current crop of TV shows would happen is one of cold hard business: Disney would have to bring Perlmutter’s division completely under their control. Even then, though, the simple logistics of lining up the long production of a major motion picture and the relatively sharp turnaround of a weekly television series make doing anything too grand still incredibly complex. We're dealing with a fundamental issue that dates back before Marvel Studios and Entertainment separated.
How We Can Expect Marvel Movies & TV To Work Together
In many ways, it's good for the various Marvel storytellers and show-runners if the two worlds remain separate. Not having to deal with close to 20 films and seven series worth of continuity can be freeing, and shows like those on Netflix have the chance to work with more adult story-lines that wouldn’t fly in the PG-13 trappings of the movies. There is a sense of satisfaction to be found in the possibility of everything tying together neatly and with purpose, but when circumstances prevent that from happening, the options available have their benefits that are worth drawing attention to.
This inescapable situation needn't be the be all and end all. Creatively, there are various options open as to how the TV and movie worlds could meet, they just need to bare minimum of communication. Even without cameos or cinematic crossovers, S.H.I.E.L.D. can still be impacted by Infinity War, while the New York-based Defenders can continue to live in a world affected by what happens on the big screen; Kingpin's rise came directly from the Battle of New York. It just needs the shows to make some considerations.
The fact remains, though, that it's one way. TV can make way for films, but not the other way around; Coulson is returning to the big screen in Captain Marvel, but as it's a prequel it's unlikely to even glance with S.H.I.E.LD. However, while that does beg the questions discussed at the start, it's better than nothing, and pleases the majority; fans who don't watch any Marvel TV aren't clamoring for an Avengers 4 interlude focusing on, say, Melinda May.
The connection between Marvel movies and TV has always been more complicated than the "it's all connected" adage suggested, and with Avengers: Infinity War that illusion is truly being shattered. But given how difficult it would be otherwise, perhaps it's for the best.
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019